A Vegan Mahashivaratri celebration held at Siddhivinayak Temple in New Jersey
The Siddhivinayak Temple in Lawrenceville NJ was persuaded by World Vegan Vision, to celebrate MahaShivaratri 2023 in a 100% vegan way. No dairy was used in the ceremonial Puja and the Prasad was entirely vegan, WVV said in a press release.
Describing it as a “pioneering Hindu religious ceremony” WVV said more than 100 devotees attended the MahaShivratri celebration.
“We had been trying hard to convince many Hindu temples in New Jersey to adopt veganism and stop using dairy in their rituals. This would be the most ethical behavior for a Hindu organization,” said WVV in its Feb. 19, press release.
“So far, our requests for meetings with temple managements to discuss this progressive action were ignored. Change is uncomfortable and most people are afraid of change,” WVV added.
The WVV credited the efforts of Nitin Vyas, director of Public Relations at World Vegan Vision, with the Siddhivinayak Temple’s decision to go vegan.
“When some devotees brought their own milk and other dairy we requested them to not use it and they gladly complied,” WVV said. “This also gave us an opportunity to explain why dairy was forbidden.”
“This is a small but important step for Hindus to consider going vegan. This was the first and only public Mahashivartri celebration in a Hindu temple that was entirely vegan,” organizers said.
Only plant based milk, ghee and yogurt were used in the Puja and Prasad.
“We hope that this will inspire and encourage all the members and supporters of World Vegan Vision to work hard on making their organizations and events 100% vegan in the future,” the WVV said.
“Can you consume dairy and still call yourself a true Hindu or a compassionate human,” the WVV asked.