SLIDESHOW: Nine days of music, dance and prayer
Hundreds of revellers enjoyed nine days of music, dance and prayer at the Apple Tree Centre as Hindus celebrated the festival of Navratri.
The centre, in Ifield Avenue, was a kaleidoscope ofbright colours during celebrations in honour of the goddess Durga.
One of the highlights of the festival was the Raasgarba, a traditional stick dance, which was performed by some 140 local youngsters, many coming from Holy Trinity and Hazelwick schools.
Navratri is celebrated twice a year to worship the many forms of the goddess – know as the Divine Mother - once in the month of Chaitra (April-May) and again in the month of Ashwin (September-October).
During the Ashwin celebrations, the main ritual consists of placing images of the goddess in homes and temples. A Yagna - sacrifice offered to fire – is performed on day eight and nine to honour the Divine Mother and bid her farewell before the idol is immersed in water.
A spokesman for the Gurjar Hindu Union said: “In Crawley, Navratri is a community event, where people perform devotional songs and dances that are popular.
“There is just one feeling all over that of joy and happiness.
“It is the time for dance, music and devotion. A festival when young hearts throb with excitement and energy and the older generation is full of devotion.”
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Weather for Crawley
Tuesday 18 June 2013
Temperature: 14 C to 22 C
Wind Speed: 15 mph
Wind direction: North
Temperature: 15 C to 27 C
Wind Speed: 10 mph
Wind direction: North