Manchester Gaura Purnima
Gaura Purnima. The Golden Moon festival. The appearance of Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu. The most important day of the year for Vaisnavas.
This year I went to the Manchester temple for this auspicious event. It was great! The devotees performed a very good play: the story of the Chand Kasi (Maulana Sirajuddina or Habibara Rahamana). A muslim magistrate who about 500 years ago outlawed the chanting of Hare Krishna. Caitanya organized a civil disobedience march to counter the ban. Thousands of devotees chanted in the streets and surrounded the Kasi's house.
The Kasi eventually emerges from his house and discusses the philosophical differences of Islam and Vaisnavism with Lord Caitanya. After debating according the scripture the Kasi admits that the reasons and argument for meat-eating in the Koran is not very sound, but he must accept them nevertheless for the sake of his community (CC Adi 17.170+171). He accepts the Vedas as bona-fide scriptures and passes a law the the chanting of the Maha Mantra must never be impeded.
The ecstatic kirtan after the play confirmed the power and bliss of chanting the Maha Mantra.
The pictures of the day are in the gallery