The Nepalese Student Association (NSA) celebrated the Dashain festival on Saturday, Oct. 7. The festival commemorates the goddess Durga from Hindu mythology and celebrates the victory of good over evil.
“Dashain is a festival of coming together as a community and merrymaking,” said Nischal Aryal, a sophomore computer science major from Kathmandu, Nepal, and president of the NSA. “Dashain for us means coming together as a community, and today with this program we tried to bring our Troy family together.”
The event was insightful to the guests as they got to learn about the country and its festival. The presentation, song and dance showcased introduced attendees to the Nepalese culture.
“I have never seen much of different cultures before, and I have just been to one other country,” said Trent Russell, a freshman business major from Helena. “But tonight, being here, I felt like I got a taste of Nepal, too.”
Clay Graham, a junior psychology major from Moulton, said that before coming to the event he hadn’t been sure of what to expect.
“I had read a little bit about Dashain before about it being a celebration of good over evil, but I really didn’t know much past that,” Graham said. “But now after this, I have a better understanding of the culture.”
He added that events like these were important for students in order to be able to see and understand each other’s cultures and where they come from.
“The best part of the program was the fellowship, was seeing people enjoying a different culture,” said Joe McCall, a senior lecturer of history.
Traditionally, Dashain is a festival where people receive blessings from their elders, and the guests at Troy’s festival received “tika” on their foreheads, a mixture of vermilion powder and rice.
Guests were served traditional Nepali food of “pulau,” a flavored rice dish, and various curries that encapsulated the Nepalese cooking style.
“I am lightweight with spices, and I have learned that if I combine a little bit of rice and a little bit of the spicy stuff, then I’m good,” McCall said.
“This festival has always been about having fun and eating food with friends and family back at home,” said Smit Shrestha, a sophomore computer science major from Chitwan, Nepal, and vice president of NSA. “Today we had fun with our Trojan family.”