Cidha Dahi Utsava At Ancol Beach, Jakarta, Indonesia
By Hari Narayana Das
That morning the sun rise was so wonderfull. The cool air, the chirp of bird and the wave of the beach came in harmony giving an pleasant atmospher to escape from the rush and crowded of Jakarta city. Festifal beach, one of beaches located in Jakarta gulf, Ancol is the place that attract many visitors to come and enjoy the beauty of the beach with their family or in group As the name of the beach is Festival Beach, it is suittable to do Hare Krishna public festival. H.H. Subhag Swami Maharaj inspired the devotees to do festival in the public area in Jakarta as Srila Prabhupada mention on His letter “…., this combination of book distribution and public festival is very good in bringing the people to an attraction for Krishna consciousness. Go on holding as many festivals as possible.” (SPL to Nrasinga Caitanya, 5th June 1974), that was why the devotees of Jakarta, came the Ancol beach to do cidha dahi utsava festival.
On June 30, 2013 the the devotees did cidha dahi utsava festival at the festival beach. The festival is the first time done by devotees in Jakarta. The committee of the festival, Raghunatha das along with other devotees (Navayouna prbhu, Satya prabhu, Madavendra prabhu, Narotam prabhu, Pada Sevana prabhu, Virabadra prabhu, Subudi Prabhu, Nyoman Sunarta prabhu, Ketut Tribayuna, Olik prbhu) prepared the festival. Many devotees from Bali, Sri Garbha das, Dinanath das, Brajanabha das, and others also came to help for the sucsess of the festival. They prepared the chip rice, cut the fruits, and many other preparations. The committee rented one tend for from the Ancol’s autority for the festival. All the items of the festifal were donated by the devotees.
The devotees started the festival at 10.00 am. The brought Sri Sri gaura-Nitai deities from Sri Nilacala dham temple Jakarta, and from devote’s deities. After finising the arati the deities in parade went to the beach to bath the Lord. Along the way to the beach the visitors who were mostly non Hindu were asthonized seeing the parade. They took picture of the devotees and the ceremonial. the conchshell also blown along the way. The Lord then bathed in the water where many visitors also played in. H.H. Subhag Swami Maharaj personaly presented and blown the conchshell when the Lord was in the water. After returning from the beach, the Lord was then abhisek by H.H. Subhag Swami Mahraj followed by other devotees. Srimati vishaka devi lead the bajan while the Lord was being abhisek. Maharaj gave class while the Deities were dressing. Chidha was offered after the Lord was dress. Then devotees joyfully greatted the Lord. Maharaj Personally mixed the chipe rice and the fruits then the devotees shared to the public people who came to the beach. They accepted and enjoyed the maha prasadam joyfully. The devotees then honoured prasadam. The prasadam was sponsored by grishasta from Cibubur. The devotees also did book distribution at that time.