November 30, 2015 (Kartik Krushna paksha Panchami, Kaliyug Varsh 5117)
We received several criticisms from local devout Hindus concerning Halloween (Trick or Treat) event planned on Radha Krishna Temple’s premises in Lawrenceville, New Jersey in the month of October 2015.
Upon reviewing the concerns, the FHA team immediately wrote an informal letter to the Radha Krishna Temple’s trustees requesting them to remove the Adharmik event from Temple’s calendar, including its website. In the letter, FHA explained that Hindu Temples are centers of faith and give inspiration to do Sadhana (spiritual practice) however, by involving in Halloween celebrations, a Hindu Temple is sending out a wrong message to the local community that it is acceptable for Hindus to celebrate westernized customs and festivals! In addition, the letter also expressed concerns that celebrating Halloween in a Hindu temple is not only destroying the divine ambiance but also promoting depressing and distressful (Raja-Tama) vibes in the Temple’s surrounding atmosphere!
Forum for Hindu Awakening (FHA) team has not received any response from Radha Krishna Temple’s trustees. The temple’s trustee did not show any courtesy to acknowledge or reply to our email communication regarding this matter. It disheartening to see that in spite of providing humble guidance and request, Hindu temple is not following moral (sadachar) and ethical conduct. Therefore, we request our readers that in future, if they come across any such malpractices at their local temple, please increase awareness by talking to the Temple management and educating them about how to perform the devotional programs and how to celebrate festivals as per Dharma shaastra, and maintain sanctity of the Temple. In current times, Hindu Temples have to rise to the challenge of promoting and protecting the Hindu Dharma and Hindu culture. We also stress that our aim in bringing this up is to educate and ensure that Hinduism gets accurately represented in society.
Please keep us informed at email@example.com about any of the above or any other malpractices carried out at your local Temple.
Please see below the educative letter sent to Radha Krishna Temple’s management.
From: Hindu Awakening <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Thu, Nov 19, 2015 at 10:53 PM
Subject: Regarding Halloween Festival at Hindu Temple
To: email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org
|| Om Om Namo Bhagavate Vasudevaya Om Om ||
Ill Effects of Celebrating Halloween Festival in Hindu Temple
Forum for Hindu Awakening (FHA) is a non-profit organization that strives to awaken society to the unique spiritual science behind Hindu Dharma concepts and practices, to motivate people to live and preserve them, and to facilitate the spiritual progress of humanity. One of the ways we do this is by addressing misrepresentations of Hinduism and curbing the malpractices incidents. For further details please refer to our website http://forumforhinduawakening.org/.
We have reviewed the calendar of events for Radha Krishna Temple in Lawrenceville for the month of October 2015 showing Halloween (Trick or Treat) event planned in the Temple’s premises.
We are sending this appeal to you to bring to your attention a few apprehensions put forward by concerned Hindus. We commend you for your goal to promote useful information about temple’s upcoming events for Hindu devotees. Such information will be definitely useful for devotees of Radha Krishna. However, we would like to bring to your attention that Halloween (Trick or Treat) event listed on October, 2015 calendar on the Temple’s site, is not in accordance with Hindu shaastra (spiritual science).
Hindu Temples are centers of faith and give inspiration to do Sadhana (spiritual practice). A Hindu Temple spreads Shakti, Chaitanya, Anand, Shanti and Sattvikta (spiritually pure vibrations) so that the entire atmosphere around it gets purified. For Hindus living outside India, the Hindu Temple has often been the place where they have been introduced to such Hindu customs, Hindu cultural ceremonies and Hindu spirituality.
However, if a Hindu Temple does not follow Sanatan Dharma and practice sattvik events then how will citizens in the local community look up to the Hindu temple as a place for Hindu worship and teachings? By including Halloween celebrations, a Hindu Temple is sending out a wrong message to the local (and now via Facebook, Twitter, etc. to the global) community that it is acceptable for the Hindus to celebrate westernized festivals! Unfortunately, celebrating Halloween in a Hindu temple is not only destroying the divine ambiance but also promoting negative and distressful energies in the Temple’s surrounding atmosphere.
During the celebration of Halloween, adults and children dress up as ghosts, witches, skeletons, zombies, etc. and walk around the neighborhood, going door-to-door demanding goodies and intimidating those who refuse. This results in increased raja-tama values in the minds of adults and children. Also in places where Halloween is celebrated, the raja-tama components increase substantially in the atmosphere. Sadly, if such activities are promoted and conducted on the premises of a Hindu Temple, it not only attracts a lot of distressing vibrations but also people doing those acts transmit negative energy into the environment. How can then a Hindu Temple remain a source of inspiration to do Sadhana (spiritual practice)?
In accordance with Hindu Shaastra (spiritual science), ‘the word, touch, form, taste, smell and its related energy coexist’. This means where the word ‘God’ is present, God’s attendant divine energy is also present. Similarly where the name and form of ghosts (demons, devils, negative energies, etc.) exist such as on Halloween, their distressing energy is also present. Halloween is a festival which is devoid of any divinity and only infused with negativity.
If you would like to learn more about the effects of celebrating Halloween, we do encourage you to visit this link: http://www.spiritualresearchfoundation.org/meaning-of-halloween.
We urge you to consider the above points and be prudent regarding plans to hold any such events in future to avoid denigration of Hinduism and maintain the sanctity of Hindu traditions. Hinduism has a lot to offer the modern world and we want children and adults alike to be able to understand and study it without being misrepresented. You can take one positive step towards ensuring that Hinduism including Hindu traditions and rituals do not get disrespected.
Please increase awareness by talking and educating to devotee about how to perform the devotional programs and how to celebrate festivals as per Dharma shaastra, and maintain sanctity of the Temple. We stress that our aim in bringing this up is to educate and ensure that Hinduism gets accurately represented in society.
Please keep us informed at email@example.com about any of the above or any other matters carried out at your local Temple.
Forum for Hindu Awakening