Jains Observe Most Important Festival Of the Year, Celebrate 24th Lord’s Birthday

Jain 2015 Celebration37

Members of the Jain Center of New Jersey line up Sept. 13 to rock the ceremonial cradle of one of their gods on his birthday.

About 1,500 people gathered Sept.13 at the Jain Center of New Jersey to celebrate the most important festival of the year for the religion, and the birthday of one of its most important gods.

The festival, Paryushan, is celebrated over eight days, and includes fasting, said Paurav Vora, the president of the center located on Cedar Grove Lane.

The celebration also includes the birthday celebration of the Jain Lord Mahavir, the last of the Jain’s 24 gods.

The day included prayers and a procession from the center’s assembly hall into its temple, where a statue representing the baby Mahavir was placed in a gold cradle.

Adherents lined up along the temple’s perimeter for the opportunity to make an offering and rock the cradle.

The festival will last through Sept. 17, Vora said.

The three-year-old center has about 1,800 families, or 4,000 people from across the state, as members, Vora said.

2015 Jain Paryushan Festival



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