Janmashtami is celebrated to commemorate the day of Lord Kirshna’s earthly appearance. In other words, it is the day when Krishna was born. It is one of the most important religious ceremonies for the people in India, celebrated mostly by the Hindus and the Vaishnavas.
Janmashtami is also celebrated globally and worshippers of Lord Krishna live in all parts of the world. Statistics suggest that it is among the biggest religious festivals of the world; a recently conducted study has revealed that around 950 million people in the world celebrate Janmashtami; out of them 2 million people resides in the United States. India, being the birth country of Krishna of course has maximum number of people taking part in the celebration of his earthy appearance.
Janmashtami is celebration by Hindus and Vaishnavas has several similarities and dissimilarities. In Vaishnava temples the celebrations begin much before dawn and continues all through the day until it’s midnight. Special rituals are performed on the exact moment of Lord Krishna’s appearance. Some of the events that take place on Janmashtami include kirtan (singing, dancing and playing of different indigenous instruments, primarily percussions), japa (intimate and private players) etc. Devotees spend the entire day decorating the idol of Radha Krishna (Krishna is worshipped along with Radha in the majority of the Hindu temples), Gopala (in many Hindu temples Krishna’s is worshipped as kid called Gopala) or Krishna with new clothes, ornaments, garlands made from fresh flower etc.
Devotees of Lord Krishna flock to the Vaishnava and Hindu Temples where Janmashtami is celebrated from different corners of the globe. All these devotees are greeted with Prasada (holy food believes to have the blessings of the Lord).
The Vaishnava institutions like Iskcon celebrate the birth anniversary of Lord Krishna is an extremely grand manner. Celebrations are also pretty big in the homeland and birthplace of Krishna, Dwarka. Dwarka is located in the Devbhoomi district of the Indian state of Gujarat.