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Celebrating Children’s Day

Childrens' Day painting by Marguerite Drescher of Halifax

Childrens’ Day painting by Marguerite Drescher of Halifax

Cheerful Seasons Greetings from the Shambhala Times!

In Shambhala we mark the changing seasons with Nyida Days. In our warrior-tradition, we take time to note the changes in our natural environment, and rejoice in the opportunity that we have to enjoy this world.

The December Nyida Day is traditionally celebrated as Children’s Day, a day for family and friends to gather and celebrate the generations in our community with song and festivities. We begin to feel a rhythm to our Shambhala calendar as we look forward to these four seasonal Nyida Day celebrations each year, and how they can develop in each center.

Margaree Group's Children's Day Shrine, Cape Breton Nova Scotia

Margaree Group’s Children’s Day Shrine, Cape Breton Nova Scotia

The shortest day of the year, Saturday, December 21st, is the official Winter Solstice. The use of candlelight in our events is a way to acknowledge this dark day and the chilly season ahead. The celebration might include gathering around a specially crafted Children’s Day shrine, cooking a special meal and exchanging gifts. Sometimes there are performances of a play like Iliana, or some magic tricks by a talented local sangha member.

In Shambhala centers that have children within their community, many host a celebration for the children, with a candlelight ceremony, offering of gifts for children in need, singing, dancing, performances and good food. It is a tradition to have two local members serve as the “King and Queen” for this event, who act as hosts, hand out candy, tell stories and encourage a spirit of fun and liveliness. It is also traditional to create a Children’s Day Shrine, featuring symbols of the King & Queen, plus the four dignities, and offering bright candies and lights.

Cruising around the online social media-sphere of Shambhala, we found these photos and stories to share with you.

Click on the first photo to view the slideshow.

San Antonio, Texas says: “What a wonderful time, the food was great, the band amazing and the
community outstanding!” Click here to see photos.

Ottawa, Ontario, Canada says: “On Saturday, December 20th, 13 children and over 40 adults gathered together at the centre to celebrate Children’s Day and Winter Solstice.” Click here to read more and see photos.

Did we miss your stories and photos? Publish them on your local center’s blog so we can see it on the Shambhala Times!

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1 response to “ Celebrating Children’s Day ”
  1. Susie Cook
    Jan 2, 2015
    Reply

    Thank you for sharing!


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