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Graduate Theological Union Announces New MA and Certificate Options in Hindu Studies; Lecture by Anantanand Rambachan
Posted on 2015/3/28 17:32:38 ( 272 reads )

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BERKELEY, CALIFORNIA, March 3, 2015 (Press Release): The Graduate Theological Union has introduced new degree options in Hindu Studies and Interreligious Studies for its Master of Arts program, and has extended the application deadline through July 1, 2015, for students seeking to enroll in these programs for the Fall 2015 semester.

The Master of Arts with an area of concentration in Hindu Studies will be offered in connection with the GTU's newly established Hindu Studies Initiative. The primary foci for the program will be the study of Hindu philosophy of religion, theology, art, and sacred texts; Hinduism and world engagement in consideration of its historical and cultural contexts; and the interrelationships of Hinduism with other Indic Dharma faiths--particularly Jainism and Indian Buddhism. In accordance with the interreligious environment of the GTU, the Hindu ethos will be studied in dialogue with other religious traditions, in order to deepen understanding and relationships amongst cultures and faiths while honoring the distinctiveness of each religion. With this new degree option, the GTU becomes one of the first masters programs in North America with a clear focus on Hindu Philosophy of Religion and Theology (which integrates art and music), as well as engaged Hinduism.

GTU will also offer a Certificate in Hindu Studies which can count toward later graduate studies.

The most important Endowed Lectureship of the GTU Berkeley is the Singh Lecture Series in Comparative Religious Thought. It is known as the "Flagship" GTU lecture. This is an annual lecture delivered by an invited eminent scholar. Renowned authors, poets, professors and public intellectuals have given this lecture, which is shared across the academy.

The 2015 GTU "Flagship" lecture will be delivered by a Hindu scholar to promote and announce the groundbreaking Hindu Studies initiative at the GTU, on April 10th, 2015 at the Doug Adams Gallery in Berkeley. Professor Anantanand Rambachan, an expert in Vedanta, and Indian Philosophy of Religion will deliver the GTU 2015 Singh lecture to celebrate the development of the world's most ancient and vibrant spiritual tradition at the nation's singular and eminent interreligious graduate university. See http://gtu.edu/events/2015-surjit-singh-lecture for details.

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Input Requested for Proposed Directory of Indian Spiritual Organisations Functioning Abroad
Posted on 2015/3/28 17:32:23 ( 263 reads )

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MARCH 27, 2015 (DISOA):The booklet titled "The Global Vision and Mission of Swami Vivekananda, and how it inspired the Indian Spiritual Thrust World-wide" (downloadable online at http://tinyurl.com/nta7ocy) highlights the need for a DIRECTORY OF INDIAN SPIRITUAL ORGANISATIONS FUNCTIONING ABROAD, and presents the details of the Project. It also contains an appeal from the President of Vivekananda Kendra, Kanyakumari, the Convener of the Project, who has undertaken it with the blessings and support of the leading spiritual institutions of Bharath. Given at the end of the booklet are details about the particulars required for the Directory, the guidelines for submission online at www.disoa.org , categories of participating institutions, their various particulars to be incorporated in the proposed Directory, and the future plan.

More information at source.

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3,500 People Leave the Christian Church in America Every Day
Posted on 2015/3/28 17:32:17 ( 385 reads )

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March, 27, 2015, USA (tfwm.com): There is an ongoing silent migration away from the church of an estimated 3,500 individuals each and every day. A 2014 study indicated that over 1.2 million people will leave the church in the next year. Several factors are contributing to this trend, but the majority of individuals who are leaving the church report that they no longer feel connected. This movement away from the church has been ongoing for several decades. The number of churches that are closing their doors every year is leading to an overall decline in church attendance. In 2015, it is estimated that over 10,000 churches will close their doors.

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Daily Inspiration
Posted on 2015/3/28 17:32:11 ( 221 reads )

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The moment I have realized God sitting in the temple of every human body, the moment I stand in reverence before every human being and see God in him--that moment I am free from bondage, everything that binds vanishes, and I am free.
-- Swami Vivekananda (1863-1902)

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Protest as Hindu Festival Delayed in Yangon, Myanmar
Posted on 2015/3/25 18:37:14 ( 717 reads )

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YANGON, MYANMAR, March 26, 2015 (by Myint Thi, The Myanmar Times): An internal dispute has caused confusion among worshippers looking forward to the Sarimari Yaman Hindu Temple festival. The original dates fixed by the temple's religious authority were March 20-29, but the All Myanmar Hindu Central Council wants it to run from March 27 to April 5, citing a one-day clash with matriculation exams. "I know the brahmin said the festival should start on March 20. But the God won't punish us if we hold it a bit later," said U Maung Shwe, president of the All Myanmar Hindu Central Council."This is the matriculation exam period, and I'm worried there may be violence so I decided to postpone the festival," he said, declining to elaborate as to why violence could be a concern.

Worshipers, however, say the council has no authority to reschedule the event. The temple's rules, which have been in force since 1914, state the festival must be conducted.They dismissed the concern of violence, saying there had been no conflict during previous festivals. "I think they want to topple the current trustees. This is the only reason the council has interfered with the temple's activities," said temple patron SP Naathal. This year was to mark the 135th festival of the Sarimari Yaman, a Hindu temple for about 20,000 Tamil Hindu worshippers. It is now unclear when the festival will go ahead.

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