Thursday, 19 July 2018

Ratha Yarta Hindu festival starts in Prague

17 July 2017

Prague, July 16 (CTK) - A march of dozens of the Hare Krishna movement's followers with an allegorical chariot decorated with flowers and fruit opened the 10th Ratha Yatra (Chariot) Hindu Festival in the centre of Prague today.

The march accompanied by singing matras, rhythmical ringing of small bells and smell of burning incense sticks attracted many tourists and other passers-by.

The festival will be held in Republic Square till the evening.

Visitors can see a traditional dance from an Indian temple, multimedia screenings and theatre performances as well as an exhibition to present the ideas and view of the world of the Hare Krishna followers.

The organisers got people acquainted with traditional Indian medicine, philosophy and martial art as well as vegetarianism and its alleged contribution to the whole world.

Ratha Yatra is one of the oldest spiritual festivals in the world. It has been held in India for hundreds of years. It was founded in the city of Puri in the Odisha Indian state and is connected with the Hindu God Krishna.

Ratha means a chariot and yatra means a pilgrimage or procession in Sanskrit.

The Hare Krishna movement has been the most famous streams based on the Hindu philosophy and religion in Europe.

In the Czech Republic, the Hare Krishna movement became an officially registered religious organisation in 2002.

However, the history of the movement in the country dates back to 1988 when the first unofficial Hare Krishna community was established in Lansperk, east Bohemia. In 1990, another community was formed at a farmstead in Mestecko u Benesova, central Bohemia.

There are several hundred followers of the Hare Krishna movement in the Czech Republic and in Slovakia.

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