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Saturday, September 25, 2021

Hindu Youth initiate New Zealand’s First DharmaFest

Hindu Youth New Zealand is proud to announce New Zealand’s first ever DharmaFest event to be held in Auckland. DharmaFest will bring together many cultural groups, performing arts organisations, meditation and yoga organisations, clothing and jewelry vendors as well as unique ethnic food providers to share the diverse contribution of Dharmic/Hindu culture to New Zealand.

Dharma based traditions, cultures, knowledge systems, understandings and lifestyles have been welcomed throughout the world, for example, yoga and meditation/mindfulness. People often remark that when they come across these communities they see the beautiful diversity, vibrance, colour, festivity, joy and celebration of life. At DharmaFest, you will witness the celebration of ‘Vibhinnatāyām Ekatvam‘ – Unity in Diversity.

DharmaFest will have an official inauguration where leaders of various Dharma based organizations will do their respective prayers to mark the launch of this event. “It will be a real significant moment for New Zealand to witness such a gathering of leaders of Dharma based organizations working together for the betterment of New Zealand society” said Murali Krishna Magesan, Coordinator of DharmaFest. It is completely a youth driven event and many young volunteers from many organizations have come together to bring DharmaFest to New Zealand. As always, these young volunteers have the blessings of the Hindu and Maori Elders.

The aim of Hindu Youth New Zealand, launched in January 2008, is to develop the creativity of youth, and to provide a fun, educational and creative environment for their development and building confidence. This is done through youth festivals in various cities; annual youth leadership training camps; Hindu youth conferences and seminars/workshops. Hindu Youth have been representing Hindu community in youth councils, government agencies and NGOs. For example, three Hindu youth have become ambassadors of Religious Diversity Centre Aotearoa New Zealand; One is a member of the Multiethnic Young Leaders NZ and is one of the chairpersons for the Youth Advisory Panel for Auckland Council.

DharmaFest will be a family-friendly event, open to all, where people can explore various stalls to learn about some of the most ancient diverse cultures, arts, crafts, yoga, meditation and ayurveda. There will be interactive stalls where you can learn how to wear sari and turbans, get mehndi done as well as purchase clothing, jewelry, arts/crafts. And what would diverse cultures be without it’s unique food! There will be multiple food stalls where you can try out the amazing flavours.

There will also be cultural programs running throughout the day ranging from classical/folk dances, singing, cultural performances as well as yoga demonstrations. Select workshops will be running throughout the day which will focus on arts, ayurveda, meditation and more.

The event is a smoke-free, alcohol-free and meat-free event with the intent to celebrate the diverse culture while looking after the well-being of the community as well focusing on sustainability by reducing the impacts of green-house emission attributed to meat.

Many individuals and organisations have been sharing beautiful aspects of Hindu/Dharmic culture with New Zealand, be it through the performing arts, crafts, science, food, clothing, indigenous knowledge systems.

“Our aim is to bring such diverse groups on a same platform so that New Zealand public can have access to that knowledge and also showcase the talents in the society”, said Murali Krishna Magesan. “There is already a lot of interest from people who are keen to come check this unique event out!” he added.

If you or your organisation would like to participate in DharmaFest either with a cultural performance (classical/folk dance/singing) or would like to hold a stall please send an email to [email protected]com with your expression of interest and our team will be in touch soon.  If you are interested in volunteering for DharmaFest please sign up on the link below: https://tinyurl.com/DharmaFestVolunteer

(This press release has been provided by Hindu Youth New Zealand.)


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