On Friday 27 October 2023 the community at Shree Swaminarayan Mandir Kingsbury celebrated the Sharad Purnima festival.
Hundreds of disciples gathered in Purushottam Mahal within which a splendid display of steel utensils was arranged in a multi-tier ornament, at the centre of which presided Lord Swaminarayanbapa Swamibapa. The sabha commenced with the divine blessings of Shree Muktajeevan Swamibapa who explained the relevance of Sharad Purnima.
Although Sharad Purnima is celebrated as a harvest festival, marking the first full moon after the end of the Monsoon season and representing the healing and nourishing powers of the moons rays, for the Swaminarayan Sampraday, the festival takes on a spiritual purpose.
On Sharad Purnima, disciples must be alert that the mundane worldly desires of passion, lust, anger, greed and other internal enemies do not enter within us but are reflected back. Just as the silver reflects the lustre of the moon, we too must be vigilant to be faithful to and true reflections of the Lord's wish and abide by His commands. But, if the silver plates are tainted, the light cannot be reflected. Similarly, if our minds and hearts are marred, the Lord's commands cannot be abided by. Just as the moon is pure, our hearts must remain pure for the Lord to reside there. Shree Muktajeevan Swamibapa says that this is the time to be truthful and honest with oneself and consider truly how faithful we are to the Lord's will.
Disciples subsequently took part in samuh raas to please the Lord as an array of devotional songs were performed by members of Swamibapa Orchestra.
The celebrations concluded with the offering of divine prasad of the Lord in the courtyard.