Rath in the News
July 27th, 2008

From the Hungarian website for news, cultural events, travel and tourism:

Krishna followers march in Budapest

2008-07-21 08:12

About 1,000 members of the Hungarian Society for Krishna Consciousness held a peaceful march called Rathayatra, or festival of the chariots, in Budapest to popularise a vegetarian way of life on Sunday

Rathayatra is one of the oldest Hindu festivals in the world. Since the late 1960s it has been celebrated annually in cities across the Europe, America and Africa. The march is open to all irrespective of religion, race or ethnic background

The participants walked along Andrassy Avenue to Vorosmarty Square in the city centre where the festival’s programme continues with cultural performances, an open market, free tasting of vegetarian food, traditional Indian music, dance and spiritual lectures

The Hungarian Society for Krishna Consciousness has been a registered religion in Hungary for nearly two decades. The community comprises about 300 priests and monks, and over 20,000 lay devotees

The centre of the community – Somogyvamos in the southwest Hungarian Somogy county – attracts tens of thousands of tourists annually.

One Response to “Rath in the News”

  1. Caitanya Candra das says:

    At the New Vraja-dhama Fair over the weekend we met many ‘first-timers’ who had come down from Budapest after receiving an invite from devotees while walking past the Ratha-Yatra procession.

    Two people I had the chance to meet stick out in my mind:

    One elderly gentleman of around 70 years who drove the 200km in hot weather to be at the fair. He was completely overwhelmed – wandering around all day in a transcendental daze, seeing everything there was to see and ending his day with a round of japa (chanting 108 maha mantra’s) on the Meditation Stepping Stone Path – he was one of the last guests to leave the fair. Committed to become a vegetarian and to take a visit to the Budapest temple.

    The other person was a Traffic Policeman who was on duty alongside the Budapest Ratha-Yatra. When I showed him and his family and friends around the temple I spoke a little about Ratha-Yatra as there was a picture of the Puri festival on the wall, I mentioned there was last weekend the very same festival in Budapest, and he grinned to himself not saying anything – later it emerged that he was on duty at Ratha-Yatra and got a flyer for the Fair and brought his family and friends down. They came very late in the day..actually after the festival had finished, around 6:30 pm, but they got to see the devotees chanting in ecstasy in the temple in front of Radhe Syamasundara, and at the Goshala they took prasadam with the cowherd boys… on leaving at nearly 10pm after all of them asking so many questions they all said that it was the most enjoyable evening and that they will never forget it as long as they live. He asked me at the end of the evening, “do you have a festival like Christmas?”…. “wasn’t the festival in Budapest like Christmas?… and this evening?… this is how the devotees of Krishna live… life is one big Christmas one day after the next!!”

    Jaya Prabhupada!
    Jaya Sri Sri Radhe Syam!