SAY YES! TO A CONSCIOUS DURGA PUJA CELEBRATION
Durga Puja or Navratri is undoubtedly one of the most important and revered of all Hindu festivals. This festival involves the ceremonial worship of Goddess Durga in nine forms – spread across nine nights – and is celebrated with a grand fervor not only in India but throughout the world.
Heralded as the triumph of good over evil, Durga Puja is the harbinger of hope and brings with itself unmatchable levels of excitement and celebratory spirit. Although community preparations involve shopping for new clothes and gifts for families and friends – truth be told, this festival is not just about celebrating the goddess’s homecoming but a reminder to showcase the power of collective energy - All Gods created Goddess Durga, who then defeated and killed the demon king Mahishasura after ten days of fighting.
It’s about dispelling the demon stemming from our ignorance and outing the blatant disregard we display towards the environment – thus if each one of us takes the responsibility of destroying that demon within, collectively the power of our action can defeat all the monster reasons causing environmental destructions.
It’s time we celebrated Durga Puja responsibly by taking sustainable initiatives and out of harm’s way. Take a look at the easy checklist that we made for you!
1) Be sassy, not trashy.
Durga Puja is a wonderful, joyous, and festive occasion. It’s a time which calls for a celebration so do come, have fun, but please, please clean up after yourself. You wouldn't throw all your trash in your living room so why litter the environment! In that vein, be a role model to others and ensure you use the trash cans provided to dump any used food plates and/or flower decorations you might have.
2) Do the BYO stunt
If you consider yourself a foodie, you simply cannot miss the delicious food on offer at the Durga Puja pandals. From the mouth-watering mangsher chop to the delectable Khichuri bhog, there’s an array of tooth-some dishes on offer. However, the sight of the overflowing trash bins filled with disposable items such as thermocol plates & plastic cutlery is not only an eyesore but more importantly, compounds our problem of waste. Which is why we implore you to consider bringing your own reusable containers & cutlery instead of taking the disposable ones – especially if you plan on taking away leftovers.
3) Sip in style
Here’s an alarming stat – plastic straws are one of the top ten most common items of trash found in the ocean. So if you’re looking to sip on some of the refreshing beverages during the event, get your own all-natural, low-footprint straws.
4) Bid farewell to Plastic
Avoid bottled water or plastic cups at the event. Instead, try carrying your own reusable water bottles and cups to keep yourself hydrated. After all, you will be doing a lot of pandal-hopping and dancing. Also when shopping at the infamous Puja stalls, make sure to hand out your reusable carry bags to the shopkeepers and do away with the unnecessary trash.
5) Promise to protect her family
Durga Maa has pledged to safeguard her family of animals just the way she protects us. Once the festivities are done, and the hoopla has died down, the regular tenants return – the animals. Next time you think about leaving behind the remnants of your exultation, give a thought to all the animals that might step on or swallow your rubbish. Make sure, you don’t let animals become one of the collateral damages during this festival.
The Bottom Line
This Durga Puja, let us all enjoy the spirit of festivities, but let us do so without causing further damage to our surroundings. You do not have to abandon all rules of common decency when it comes to cleaning up after yourself and respecting your surroundings.