Saturday, October 25, 2014


WARMEST WISHES FOR DIWALI - On Wednesday, October 22, 2014, Barack Obama, President of the United States wished a Happy Diwali to all those who celebrate the festival of lights. It is the sixth time that the Obama administration celebrates Diwali. President Obama wished a happy Diwali to Indians around the world, keeping up a tradition of increased cultural and religious awareness that his administration has been practicing since it took office in 2009. Here  is the transcript of the President’s video message: 
“I want to wish a Happy Diwali to all those who are celebrating the festival of lights here in the United States and around the world.  For Hindus, Jains, Sikhs and Buddhists, lighting the lamp - the diya - is a chance to remember, even in the midst of darkness, that light will ultimately prevail.  Knowledge will defeat ignorance, and compassion will triumph over despair.”

Diwali is also a reminder that we must each do our part to achieve that victory, by dedicating ourselves to service to others. If we affirm our commitments to one another and strive to lift each other up, then together, we will continue moving closer to that brighter future we all seek. America is a great and diverse nation, strengthened by the contributions of all our people.  I was proud to host the first Diwali celebration at the White House back in 2009.  Since then, we’ve continued to mark this holiday to honor the rich traditions that define the American family. ” 
And I know Michelle and I will never forget the wonderful time we had celebrating Diwali in Mumbai with food, dancing, and the company of friends.  So, to all the families gathering together this Diwali to reflect on all the blessings of the past year, I wish you a joyous celebration and Saal Mubarak.”

As in previous years, United States President Barack Obama has greeted Indians, especially Hindus, Jains, Sikhs and Buddhists, celebrating Diwali this weekend in the US, India and across the globe. This year President Obama gave his greeting on the Observance of Diwali, saying “lighting the lamp - the diya - is a chance to remember, even in the midst of darkness, that light will ultimately prevail.” This article is an official publication from the White House, written by Kiran Ahuja, Executive Director of the White House Initiative on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders and Ashley Allison, Associate Director at the White House Office of Public Engagement. On October 14, 2009, President Obama expressed, “the Festival of Lights symbolize the victory of light over darkness, and knowledge over ignorance. And while this is a time of rejoicing, it's also a time for reflection, when we remember those who are less fortunate and renew our commitment to reach out to those in need.” And in his last year greetings, President Obama said, “Here in the United States, Diwali also reminds us that our nation is home to many faiths and traditions, and that our diversity makes us stronger.” This marks the sixth time that the Obamas have celebrated Diwali, also known as the Festival of Lights. Our spiritual teachers have taught us that during this holiday season, people clean their homes and wears new clothes, and similarly, we must clear our minds of harmful thoughts, grudges and past hurts, to bring renewed air and new light into our hearts, site within us where the Supreme Lord resides.  (Editor's note).

Diwali also marks the New Year. For some, the day of Diwali itself is the first day of the New Year, and for others the new year's day is the day following Diwali. But for all, this season is one of heralding in the New Year. In the joyous mood of this season, we clean our homes, our offices, our rooms, letting the light of Diwali enter all the corners of our lives. We begin new checkbooks, diaries and calendars.  It is a day of "starting fresh." On this day we clean every room of the house; we dust every corner of the garage, we sweep behind bookshelves, vacuum under beds and empty out cabinets.  But, what about our hearts?  When was the last time we swept out our hearts? When did we last empty them of all the dirt and garbage that has accumulated throughout our lives? That is the real cleaning we must do. That is the real meaning of "starting fresh." We must clean out our hearts, ridding them of darkness and bitterness; we must make them clean and sparkling places for God to live.

Dr Stephen Knapp (Śrīpad Nandanandana dasa) :
“Hindu Festivals”  -

Published by dasavatara das - “Vedic Views on World News”

Wednesday, October 22, 2014


LIGHTS AND HOW IS IT CELEBRATED? What is Diwali? Diwali is the five-day festival of lights, celebrated by millions of Hindus, Sikhs and Jains across the world. The festival, which coincides with the Hindu New Year, celebrates new beginnings and the triumph of good over evil and light over darkness. The actual day of Diwali is traditionally celebrated on the festival's third day, which this year falls on Thursday, October 23. 
The festival usually falls between the middle of October and the middle of November, although this is decided upon by the Hindu lunar calendar. While each faith has its own reason to celebrate the festival, one of the most popular stories told is the legend of Lord Rama and his wife Sita returning to their kingdom in northern India from exile after defeating the demon king Ravanna.

How is Diwali celebrated? The festival is marked by large firework displays, to remember the celebrations which, according to the legend, took place upon Rama's return as locals set off their own version of fireworks. Those celebrating the festival also light traditional earthen diyas (candles) and decorate their houses with colourful rangoli artworks - patterns created on the floor using coloured rice or powder. During Diwali, families and friends share sweets and gifts and there is also a strong belief in giving food and goods to those in need. 
It is also traditional for homes to be cleaned and new clothes to be worn at the time of the festival. The food most closely associated with the festival is Indian sweets, which come in a range of colours and flavours. The celebration however features various rich savoury and sweet dishes, and while eating out is popular, families will mostly prepare food at home for when guests arrive to exchange gifts and watch fireworks. 

India is in the midst of the five-day Diwali festival marking the New Year. The festival is celebrated by Hindus, Sikhs and Jains for a variety of reasons, although the main theme which runs throughout is the triumph of light over darkness and good over evil. Diwali or Deepavali means “row of lamps” in Sanskrit. Clay lamps, or diyas, traditionally filled with mustard oil, are lit and placed around the entrances to Hindu homes on the night before the new moon in the Hindu month of Kartika, which this year falls tomorrow, on Thursday, Oct. 23. To celebrate, houses are decorated with candles and colourful lights and huge firework displays are held while families feast and share gifts. Unlike traditional roast turkey at Christmas, which is eaten in many Western countries, each Hindu family celebrating Diwali will more than likely prepare for the festival the finest vegetarian cooking in the world, such as Gobi pakora, crisp cauliflower fritters jacketed in chickpea flour; Mutter paneer, made from peas and from cubes of fresh paneer curd cheese studding a Garam masala and tomato broth; and of course, many sweets, for example Laddu, Gulab jamun, Coconut burfi, etc. Our spiritual teachers have taught us that the festival celebrates the triumph of light over darkness and the return from exile of Lord Rama to his home, Ayodhya. We should understand that Ayodhya is our heart, and Lord Rama is the Lord of our hearts. Due to being very confused in this material world, we have banished the God of our hearts. So, as we light the earthen lamps during this Diwali, we must also illuminate our hearts with divine love and ward off the darkness of so many negative and evil thoughts that keep us away from our true position as well-wishers children of our Heavenly Father. (Editor's note).

After defeating Ravana, Rama gave back the kingdom to Vibhishna, the brother of Ravana, thus establishing an eternal legacy for the Hindus that they might not usurp any possession that does not belong to them.  Winning a war does not alter this principle.  After winning the war and releasing Sita from the wicked Ravana, the period of fourteen years was over.  It was time to return to Ayodha.  The people of Ayodha were most eagerly waiting for this day.  They welcomed their beloved Rama, along with Sita, Lakshman, and Hanuman, by lighting candles to welcome them. [...] Diwali, or Deepawali, as it is often called, is the Festival of Lights.  Undoubtedly, it is the most popular festival of Hindus. Nearly one billion Hindus celebrate this auspicious event with gusto and religious sentiment in all parts of world. Diwali signifies the return of Lord Rama, after completing his fourteen years of exile in the forest and winning victory over the wicked King Ravana.

Dr. Hiro Badlani:
“Hinduism - Path of the Ancient Wisdom”
Chapter 20 - “Victory of Righteousness over Unrighteousness”
Chapter 54 - “Hindu Festivals”

Published by dasavatara das - “Vedic Views on World News”

Monday, October 20, 2014


EBOLA VIRUS KILLS THOUSANDS? The fear of Ebola has spread faster in America than the virus itself. Ebola has infected the American psyche, forcing us to do risk analysis of a pathogen we know little about. This is different from the flu scares of recent years, because this virus is novel here, and we have no cultural memory of what we are supposed to do, or think, or believe, when Ebola is on the loose. 
People have to wonder: How contagious is this virus - really? Is there something different and more pernicious about this particular strain of Ebola? The experts can’t answer such questions with certainty. Ebola has been known to science only since 1976. As an exotic disease that until this year affected only Africans in rural villages, Ebola hasn’t been studied as closely as, say, influenza or HIV.

The virus has its quirks: Some people infected with Ebola never get sick at all. Some who become sick shed massive amounts of virus - they’re “super-shedders” - but others do not. Fever is typically the first symptom of Ebola virus disease, but sometimes it’s a lagging indicator or never appears at all. The virus is mutating, like all viruses, and could conceivably - this is a very remote possibility - change its mode of transmission, a fact that has been much hyped in recent weeks by those with an alarmist frame of mind. 
Yet for all these uncertainties, the Ebola emergency in the United States has in a key respect played out exactly as epidemiologists would have expected: The people who have gotten infected, both of them at a Dallas hospital, had close contact with an extremely sick person. The incubation period of Ebola, from infection to symptoms, is generally considered to be between two and 21 days.

These days, different websites are saying that the Ebola outbreak is a hoax. They say that all of this is a massive lie and manipulative effort by the US government for ulterior motives. Others even affirm that the illness is being created by the own Red Cross vaccinations. What is the truth? The World Health Organization explains that Ebola virus particles occupy an infected person’s blood and other bodily fluids, which can enter another person through the eyes, mucous membranes, scratches on the skin or from a hypodermic needle — not from from the air or from insects. The bodies of people who have died of the disease are highly infectious. Without protective equipment, being within three feet of a patient for long periods of time is less risky, but not advisable. In small West African villages, the close personal attention given to sick or dead family members can easily spread the disease. According to WHO, officially listing the United States as having three cases (Duncan, Pham and Vinson) and one death (Duncan), while Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea have had 9,191 cases and 4,546 deaths. Being surrounded by daily doubt, deceit, anguish and suffering, we are always afraid of death because we are not sure what we will be or where we will go in the afterlife. We must involve the Supreme Lord in our daily chores, tell others about Him and chant His holy names; in this way we can let go of our fears by trusting that God will take care of us. (Editor's note).

Each life is meant for us to learn more about ourselves, and about who we are. Death is not simply a matter of getting old or sick and then dying. Natural death happens when you have finished doing what you were meant to do in this life. You may have wanted to do more or not, but when you have done what you were meant to do, you will move on. Nature will arrange it that you will leave this realm. Each life is like a classroom wherein you learn a certain amount, and go through a certain number of lessons or tests. Then you graduate to the next class. We can learn willingly or unwillingly. We can cooperate or be uncooperative. We can repeatedly keep going through it until we learn all of the necessary lessons to go on to the next level. That is our choice. And if you have failed any of the tests, don't worry. You'll have the chance to try it again.

Dr Stephen Knapp (Śrīpad Nandanandana dasa) :
“Facing Death: Welcoming the Afterlife”
“Dispelling The Fear of Death”  -

Published by dasavatara das - “Vedic Views on World News”

Friday, October 17, 2014


Arbil, Iraq (Reuters) The Islamic State group said it enslaved families from the minority Yazidi sect after overrunning their villages in northwestern Iraq, in what it praised as the revival of an ancient custom of using women and children as spoils of war. In an article in its English-language online magazine Dabiq, the group provides what it says is religious justification for the enslavement of defeated “idolators”. 
The ancient custom of enslavement had fallen out of use because of deviation from true Islam, but was revived when fighters overran Yazidi villages in Iraq's Sinjar region. “After capture, the Yazidi women and children were then divided according to the Shariah amongst the fighters of the Islamic State who participated in the Sinjar operations, after one fifth of the slaves were transferred to the Islamic State's authority to be divided as khums,” it said.

Khums is a traditional tax on the spoils of war. “This large-scale enslavement of mushrik (idolator) families is probably the first since the abandonment of Shariah law,” it said. Islamic State practices a harsh form of Sunni Islam and has declared its leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi the ruler of the entire Muslim world. Mainstream Sunni scholars around the world have denounced the group and its interpretation of Islam. 
“One should remember that enslaving the families of the (non-believers) and taking their women as concubines is a firmly established aspect of the Shariah,” the article said. The group has hounded ethnic and religious minorities in northern Iraq since seizing the city of Mosul in June, killing and displacing thousands of Christians, Shi'ite Shabaks and Turkmen who lived for centuries in one of the most diverse parts of the Middle East. 

This news released by Reuters news agency, is about a Dabiq article on slavery that unfortunately confirms practices documented by Human Rights Watch, which says Yazidi women and girls were forced to marry Islamic State fighters and shipped out in busloads from Iraq to Syria to be sold off as prizes. Last week, Human Rights Watch said Islamic State was holding hundreds of Yazidis captive in both Iraq and Syria and that the group had systematically separated young women and teenage girls from their families, forcing some into marriage with fighters. The Dabiq article said fighters were reviving a practice of the companions of the Prophet Mohammad by enslaving enemies. Enslaving women and forcing them to become wives reduces sin by protecting men from being tempted into adultery, it said. Yazidis, who follow an ancient religion derived from Zoroastrianism, have faced some of the harshest penalties from Islamic State, which regards them as devil-worshippers. Many of the captives had “willingly” accepted Islam, the group said, “and now race to practice it with evident sincerity after their exit from the darkness of idolatry”. How terrible! A lot of cruelty in the name of religion. Cruelty acts toward women and innocent creatures causes great disturbances in the world. What is worse, when irresponsible men, under the guise of defending a religion, satisfy their uncontrolled desires by raping women and girls. A bonafide religion must teach that we are all spiritually related and, therefore, it should be very easy for believers to find similarities among the essential principles of all religions and ignore their differences. (Editor's note).

Regardless of which religious system you choose, they all have the same purpose, and they all give the same principles. In this way, they are all united in their essential goals, the most important of which is to bring the living beings to the stage of cooperation in love of God. Obviously, our love for God will be shown by how much we cooperate with one another. Unfortunately, before we reach this advanced stage we are in the lower levels of understanding. This immature level of love can take on the characteristics of a blind and fanatical allegiance to a particular process of religious expression rather than attachment to real love for God. In this situation, one may proudly and unnecessarily feel that he is on the highest path, and then will denounce every other process and culture without the proper spiritual understanding of himself or others. This is nothing more than sentimentality and fanaticism. Real love of God, which also displays love for all other living beings, will not develop within a person if he or she harbors such a divisive mentality.

Dr Stephen Knapp (Śrīpad Nandanandana dasa) :
“Toward World Peace: Seeing the Unity Between Us All”  -

Published by dasavatara das - “Vedic Views on World News”

Sunday, October 12, 2014


TO DECLARE RELIGION AS MENTAL ILLNESS - Religion can be a source of comfort that improves well-being. But some kinds of religiosity could be a sign of deeper mental health issues. Seeing their kids more eager to pray than play video games, most parents would shout, “Hallelujah” or whatever their expression of joy. And they should. Research shows that religion can be a positive force in the lives of children, just as can be for adults.
“Religion,” says Bill Hathaway, a clinical psychologist of religion and Dean of the School of Psychology and Counseling at Regent University, “is related to the child having a higher sense of self esteem, better academic adjustment and lower rates of substance abuse and delinquent or criminal behavior.”

So if your child is immersed in scripture after school and prays regularly throughout the day, you may breathe a sigh of relief.  She’s such a good girl. My boy is okay. Or maybe not. Your child’s devotion may be a great thing, but there are some kids whose religious observances require a deeper look. For these children, an overzealous practice of their family faith — or even another faith  — may be a sign of an underlying mental health issue or a coping mechanism for dealing with unaddressed trauma or stress. 
Therapists in private practice report that they are seeing children and teens across a range of faiths whose religious practice can be problematic. Are they doing well at school, playing sports or music, socializing with friends? If so, then their faith is probably a source of strength and resilience.  If, however, the religious practices and rituals seem to be overtaking their daily lives, and displacing their normal activities, experts suggest taking steps to understand what’s triggering the focus on faith.

In a recent article in Time magazine, written by journalist Francine Russo, it was published a vision about the damages that religiosity could cause. The author says, "Children with obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), for example, may rigidly repeat holy verses, say Hail Mary’s or focus on other rituals less out of a deeper sense of faith but more as an expression of their disorder. “It looks positive but could be negative,” says Stephanie Mihalas, a UCLA professor and licensed clinical psychologist. Such ritualistic behavior, she says, may also reflect a child’s way of coping with anxiety, and in reality could be no more spiritual than fanatical hand washing or dreading to walk on cracks." Hmm ... interesting article, right? You may think that the article's headline is sensationalism, since it is NOT claiming that ALL people of faith are mentally ill, as the headline suggests. Also, perhaps it might be too exaggerated to think that someday psychiatrists declare religion as a mental disease; however, this article is showing the very fact that psychiatrists are trying to tie religion into their studies on psychology and it could be dangerous due to the fact that they are materialistic studies which can understand the spiritual domain. And this is alarming because this psychiatric trend to analyze everything according to its materialistic point of view is regrettably increasing. We should read and take advantage of the knowledge that is found in the Bhagavad-gītā as it is a superior knowledge which begins at a point that is beyond materialistic understanding. And not only that, besides to understand that one is not this material body we should engage in the activities of the spiritual world. (Editor's note).

Knowledge begins not from Krishna, but from things which we are accustomed to see every day. [...] There are many scientists, for example, who are soil experts; they can say, by analyzing a particular type of earth, what kind of minerals are there. Somebody seeks out silver, somebody seeks out gold, somebody seeks out mica. This is knowledge of gross things—the earth. [...] Next comes the study of the ethereal: electronics, ethereal transformations from one thing to another. Then, finer still, is the mind—psychology and psychiatry. But for intelligence, rationalism, there is only a little philosophical speculation. And what about the soul? Is there any science of the soul? The materialists have none. Material science has advanced to the study of the ether, or the mind and intelligence, but there is no advancement beyond that. Beyond intelligence, they do not know what exists. But here in the Bhagavad-gītā you can find this.

Śrīla A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda :
“Krsna Consciousness The Topmost”
Chapter Five: “Our Real Life”

Published by dasavatara das - "Vedic Views on World News"

Monday, October 6, 2014


LAUNCHES CLEAN INDIA CAMPAIGN Prime Minister Narendra Modi last Thursday wielded the broom symbolically at a place where Mahatma Gandhi once stayed to launch a unique nationwide campaign that seeks to change Indians’ mindset and clean up India in five years. In a spirited speech near the India Gate monument a short while later, Modi told a huge gathering that Indians had a responsibility of fulfilling Mahatma Gandhi’s dream of ridding the country of dirt and filth by 2019, the 150th birth anniversary of Gandhi.
On his way to Valmiki Colony which Gandhi made his home for 214 days in 1946-47, Modi – known for his unusual workstyle – halted his car, entered the Mandir Marg police station, saw the state of cleanliness and calmly picked up the broom to sweep away the dust.

After a brief visit to the Valmiki temple, the prime minister took up a broom and swept a small area in the company of party colleagues and residents to symbolically launch the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan or Clean India campaign. He used a dust pan to put the small pile of dirt into the dustbin. Modi started the day by visiting Rajghat, the Gandhi memorial on the bank of the Yamuna river. Visitors to India complain about the dirt, the absence of enough dust bins, choked drains, poor state of most public toilets, spitting and urinating in the open as well as the general lack of commitment of the people to keep the country clean. 
In his speech, Modi said India – a country not particularly noted for cleanliness – could be transformed provided the citizens disciplined themselves instead of expecting cleanliness only from municipal sweepers.

Last Thursday marked the 145th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi, who was a strong advocate of cleanliness, and on that day India Prime Minister Narendra Modi symbolically wielded the broom to launch a nationwide campaign that aims to clean up India in five years. “Do citizens have no role in this? We have to change this mindset,” Modi said in his speech. “India can do it, the people of India can do it.” Modi underlined that he should not be the focus of the Clean India campaign – and the campaign should not be viewed from a political prism. “This is not about Modi… Modi is only one of its 1.2 billion people… This is a people’s task.” The prime minister administered a pledge to the gathering to contribute at least two hours a week to keep their surroundings clean. From this humble website we congratulate the Prime Minister Modi for hearing the claims that had been done and for his decision to tackle this big problem: Trash, which affects India and especially its holy places. For several years, various spiritual teachers, individually and through their different missions, as well as private non-governmental groups have insisted that it is necessary to clean dhams not only to benefit the foreign tourists and the local community, but also for the fact that keeping these sites dirty is a great offense to the Divine. Some of the projects that are being made to clean up rivers and sacred sites in India are: Friends of Vrindavan with A Helping Hand For Vrindavan and Mayapur, and Vrindavan Cleaning Fund (VCF) program with their wonderful cleaning projects in joint operations with Vrindavan Municipality; also the Vraj Mandal Parikram and Vrinda Kunja with their projects: Cleaning Sri Mayapur Dham, Cleaning Govardhan, Cleaning Sri Vrindavan Dham, Cleaning the banks of Yamuna, Cleaning of Vamsi Vat Gardens and Gopinath Gardens; etc. Also, for months a request to the Prime Minister of India to clean India is provided in the web. (Editor's note).

This is a request to the Prime Minister of India: Narendra Modi, to clean India as a good strategy in order to increase and improve tourism. 
Every year, ancient culture and sites (such as temples and palaces) all over India, attract many tourists to the country. However, there is a big problem which makes people reconsider returning to India: trash. Trash everywhere, on the roads, streets, bus stations, outside the temples, stores, and even restaurants, etc. represents an unpleasant experience for having a mystic dream. This is not only dangerous for the health of tourists, but also for all the local residents. It is urgent to clean India and create a permanent cleaning culture. A clean India is something not only tourism deserves, but also Indians. Surely, this action will improve both the economy of this country by attracting more tourists every year and also will reduce the mortality and disease rate due to infections. 
Join us and share this request and, like this, we will obtain enough signatures to help our sacred India.
Published by dasavatara das - “Vedic Views on World News”

Friday, October 3, 2014


DUSSEHRA OR VIJAYADASHAMI - Dussehra, also known as Vijayadashmi, is a major Indian festival celebrated on the tenth day of Ashvin month according to the Hindu calendar. This day falls in the month of September or October. The day culminates a 9 day fasting period of Navratri in the Hindu culture. The day also coincides with immersion of the idol of Goddess Durga. The day is celebrated to commemorate the killing of demon Ravana by Lord Rama. The day also celebrates the killing of demon Mahishasur by Goddess Durga.
Dussehra celebration spreads the message of the victory of good over sin. It is believed that the celebration of Dussehra started in the 17th century, when the king of Mysore ordered the celebration of the day on a grand scale.

Ever since, the day is celebrated with great fervor and energy. There are a lot of mythological tales associated with the day. According to Ramayana, demon Ravana was killed by Lord Rama on this day as revenge against the cruel act of kidnapping Goddess Sita by the former. Mythology also has it that Goddess Durga killed demon Mahishasura after a long spell of cruelty and oppression by Mahishasura. Largely, the day is celebrated to commemorate the prevalence of good over evil. The day is celebrated on a large scale in India as well as in Bangladesh. 
The most famous Dussehra celebrations in India are those in the city of Mysore. Goddess Chamundeshwari is worshipped on this day and a grand procession of her idol is taken out across the city. Major buildings are decorated with lights and color across the city.

Today, Friday, 03 October 2014,  is Dussehra (Vijaya Dashami). The Vijayadashami or Dussehra festival is of a tremendous cultural significance in India and it is celebrated with gaiety and love. In Nepal, Dussehra or Dasara is celebrated as Dashain.  After Navaratri, the tenth and final day is Vijayadashami, the day of victory. Vijayadashami or Dussehra festival is celebrated as victory of Lord Rama over Demon Ravana and also triumph of Goddess Durga over the buffalo Demon Mahishasura. There are also other events that mark the celebrations on this day, such as the end of the exile period of Pandavas and their coming back to their kingdom.Other famous Dussehra celebrations in India take place in Kolkata and Orissa, where the festival is preceded by week long celebrations. People visit the Pooja Pandals wearing new clothes, prepare traditional food at home and celebrate the festival with their friends and families. In most other parts of India, plays are organized across cities depicting the story of Ramayana which culminates in the killing of Ravana on this day. Statues of Ravana are burnt everywhere in India on Dussehra and in Delhi, the event is attended by political dignitaries in the Ramlila Maidan, which is a large ground traditionally used for staging the annual Ramlila. In short, it  is a celebration of the victory of good over evil, and when people burn in a huge bonfire the effigy of Ravana, the ten-headed demon, it also represents the destruction of the false ego and the process by which we can purify ourselves of the ten sins, meaning the sins committed by the ten active senses (the senses of perception and organs of action). (Editor's note).

Dussehra Vijaydashtmi is one of the most important Hindu festivals; it celebrates the victory of Lord Rama over wicked Ravana. In many places large effigies of Ravana are burned to symbolize the ultimate victory of goodness over evil. It follows another festival of nine nights of worship of goddess Navratri, culminating in victory on the tenth day. (Vijay means victory, and dashtmi is tenth day.)  [...] The philosophical and symbolic concept of Navaratri points out that the demon Mahishasura is our own ego within, and the goddess to destroy is the all-powerful Shakti of spiritual internal meditation, through which the energy is moved from the lower chakras of violence, lust, and greed to the higher chakras of goodness, knowledge, and charity.

Dr. Hiro Badlani :
“Hinduism - Path of the Ancient Wisdom”
Chapter 54: “Hindu Festivals”

Published by dasavatara das - “Vedic Views on World News”