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Museum Postpones Controversial Films
Posted on 2002/2/9 22:46:02 ( 667 reads )


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NEW YORK, NEW YORK, February 10, 2002: The American Museum of Natural History here has postponed two controversial films on India because of protests from the Hindu community. The films are described on the museum web site at "source" above. The first, "We Are Not Your Monkeys" by Anand Patwardhan, is a five minute video. "The song 'We Are Not Your Monkeys,' composed by Daya Pawar and sung by Sambhaji Bhagat, offers the dalit (lower caste) perspective on the Ramayana epic." The second, "In the Name of God," also by Patwardhan, is a 90 minute documentary. The description is: "This film presents an incisive account of the movement by Hindu nationalists to rally ordinary citizens around the purported birth site of the Hindu god Rama in the north Indian city of Ayodhya. It details the campaign waged in the late 1980s and early 1990s by the militant Vishwa Hindu Parishad (World Hindu Organization) to destroy the 16th-century Babri Mosque and build a temple to Rama. Presenting a range of views, the film highlights how Hindu nationalism and militancy is primarily an upper-caste and middle-class phenomenon." Protesters claim both items reflect the Marxist philosophy of the filmmaker and not the reality of the situation.




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Chinese to Compete in the India Ayurveda Supplements Market
Posted on 2002/2/9 22:45:02 ( 737 reads )


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NEW DELHI, INDIA, February 8, 2002: The $600-million Chinese health care firm Tiangin Tianshi Biological Dev Co Ltd is introducing a range of Chinese herb-based food supplement health products in India. Tianshi's foray is an outcome of Chinese premier Zhu Rongji's recent visit to India, promising greater business between the two countries. In the first phase, Tianshi's Indian branch will import and market eleven health food supplements in the areas of cardiac system, energy, calcium supplements, weight management, essential systems like kidney, dietary fibre and zinc supplements, internal body cleaners, body vitalisers and so on. It will market items both from traditional Chinese medicine and Ayurveda.




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Karnataka State to Open 300 English-Median Schools to Offset Christian Schools
Posted on 2002/2/9 22:44:02 ( 576 reads )


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BANGALORE, INDIA, February 7, 2002: Primary and Secondary Education Minister H Vishwanath today said the State government had given permission for opening of 300 English medium schools, including 150 schools in Bangalore City alone, in the current academic year. The schools would have classes from standard 5 to 10. Speaking to reporters here, the Minister said the Government permitted establishment of new schools to help reduce demand for seats in prestigious English convents in cities. "If there are more schools, then the rush for select hi-profile schools will naturally reduce," he argued.




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Greeting Card Company Sues Hindu Organizations
Posted on 2002/2/8 22:49:02 ( 681 reads )


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NEW DELHI, INDIA, FEBRUARY 5, 2002: Archies Greetings and Gifts Ltd. has filed a suit in the Delhi High Court for a permanent injunction to restrain the Shiv Sena and some other organizations from "interfering in the Valentine's Day celebrations and sales promotions." Justice Sharda Aggarwan on Tuesday issued notices to the Shiv Sena and other Hindu organizations including the VHP and Bajrang Dal, and also the Commissioner of Delhi Police. The Archies petition accuses the Shiv Sena, VHP and Bajrang Dal of playing moral police and threatening the company and the public against celebrating Valentine's Day. Archies states these organizations have warned of "dire consequences, including physical harm" and that its right to conduct business cannot be restricted by these organizations. Archies has sought an injunction to restrain these organizations from "holding violent demonstrations, shouting vulgar slogans, intimidating employees and general public" at its establishments and obstructing "the ingress and egress of employees, customers and general public and using any violent means or assaulting its employees and the general public on and around Valentine's Day". One can read about the origins of Valentine's Day at http://www.bright.net/~magates/Valentine/. The site says in part, "The one thing we can be sure of is that at least one person by the name of Valentine did live and that he was killed for being a Christian."




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Bali Culture Exhibition in Switzerland
Posted on 2002/2/8 22:48:02 ( 705 reads )


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BASEL, SWITZERLAND, FEBRUARY 8, 2002: Basel's Museum of culture is staging an exhibition of the most important permanent collection of Balinese cultural artifacts outside Bali. For most tourists who go there there every year, Bali is known as "the last paradise" because of its beaches and tropical scenery. But to the inhabitants of the small Indonesian province it's the "Island of the Gods," and that's the title of the Basel exhibition. The links between Basel and Bali go back to 1919, when Basel ethnologist Paul Wirz began conducting research and documentation of Balinese culture and it was through him that the collection took shape. Artists, musicians and other enthnologists from Basel followed up his work, and since 1972 their findings have been meticulously documented by the curator of the current exhibition, Urs Ramseyer. "Fundamentally Bali is a culture moved by the motor of religion," says Ramseyer. "Religion is still very important in Balinese thinking and is even part of everyday life, and as long as the ceremonies connected to people and nature are needed in Bali, we will continue to have the opportunity to see a very living culture."




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Petition to Protest Museum Film Showing
Posted on 2002/2/8 22:47:02 ( 779 reads )


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NEW YORK, NEW YORK, February 8, Concerned Hindus may sign a petition protesting two movies being showing as part of the American Museum of National History's exhibition on Hindus at "source" above. The site contains more information about the films and the reasons for the protest.




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Sri Swami Dayanandaji Maharaj Attains Mahasamadhi
Posted on 2002/2/8 22:46:02 ( 670 reads )


Source: Press Reports





INDIA, February 4, 2002: His Holiness, Sri Swami Dayanandaji Maharaj attained Mahasamadhi today. Born in Bhimavaram, Andhra Pradesh, in 1923 to prosperous parents, he was known as Ramalinga Raju. When he was studying in college he felt an urge to renounce the world and found himself at the feet of Swami Sivananda. He was initiated into the holy order of Sannyasa in January 1948 and given the monastic name of Swami Dayananda. Swami was an active participant in the work of the Divine Life Society. In 1970 he was appointed as one of the Secretaries of the Divine Life society, in which post he continued until September, 1975 when he was elected by the Board of Trustees as a member of the Trust Board and Treasurer of the Divine Life Society, a position he held until his transition.




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Book Released on Manufacture and Repair of Tabla
Posted on 2002/2/8 22:45:02 ( 815 reads )


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HOUSTON, TEXAS, February 7, 2002: Dr. David Courtney, prominent musicologist and author has released his masterful technical and practical treatise, "Manufacture And Repair Of Tabla." It is his third book in the series "The Complete Reference For Tabla" following the success of "Fundamentals Of Tabla" and "Advanced Theory Of Tabla." The latest covers a wide range of information -- materials, manufacture, repair, physics and the tuning of the tabla. It also deals with the craftsmen and health issues involved in the craft. Arguably the only book of it's kind ever written detailing a specific perspective of the instrument, Courtney has also included illustrations and photographs to guide the reader to better understanding. For more information go to source above or contact the author at david@chandrakantha.com.




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Saints Refuse to Bathe in Polluted Ganga
Posted on 2002/2/7 22:49:02 ( 621 reads )


Source: Times of India





ALLAHABAD, INDIA, February 7, 2002: Resentment has been brewing amongst saints and devotees attending the Magh Mela over the rising levels of pollution in the Ganga. Reports said some sadhus of a particular sect refused to take a dip in the river, besides threatening legal action, if requisite action was not taken to clear the river of effluents. Tridandi Swami Rangra Manujacharya of Durvasa Ashram refrained from taking a dip in the river for the last two days while Hari Chaitanya Brahmachariji, Tikar Mafi, threatened to approach the courts with other sadhus, if the situation did not improve within next few days. Earlier, Tridandi Swami had called upon kalpvasis and sadhus for observing a day-long fast protesting the pollution and threatened to go on a relay fast. These decisions were taken at the sant sammelan at Laxmi Narain camp in Magh Mela area on Wednesday. In his address Swami Nishchalanandji, said that if the river had not at all existed, then what would have had been the fate of human beings, forbidding them to bathe or even irrigating their fields.




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Using Color as Medicine
Posted on 2002/2/7 22:48:02 ( 625 reads )


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UNITED KINGDOM, JANUARY 20, 2002: Speaking of the bright reds and purples painted in a abstract design on the walls in the hydrotherapy room at a London hospital, Jane Duncan, artist in residence at Chelsea and Westminster Hospital, said: "I wanted to use color to achieve a dynamic environment for the patients in the hydrotherapy room, to encourage them to move and exercise. I also wanted them to feel cheerful." But according to researchers at Leeds University, the color's Ms. Duncan used in her mural were exactly the kind of colors they found make people feel dynamic and positive. Only the Leeds researchers used mathematics, with complicated equations and numbers, to describe how people responded positively to different colors. Dr James Nobbs, from the Color Chemistry Department at Leeds University, said: "Until now, how people responded emotionally to color was the domain of artists and designers who could not substantiate their claims in scientific terms. But now it's proven. Color affects our emotions." Dr. Nobbs and his colleagues at Leeds University have been working with scientists in Japan, Hong Kong, and Thailand, to create what they call color emotions scales, a result of analyzing the response people had to different colors through word pairs. Hindu mystics have long held the knowledge of color, especially in regards to the human aura which when seen psychically, is filled with many colors which are reflections of the thoughts and emotions active in the nervous system and change according to one's state of mind.




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Actor Madhavan Caged for Animal Rights
Posted on 2002/2/7 22:47:02 ( 749 reads )


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MADRAS, INDIA, February 4, 2002: R. Madhavan, a popular South Indian movie actor, crammed himself into a tiny cage and gripped its wire mesh to appeal for compassion for chickens as part of a campaign by an international animal rights group. He was posing for the campaign, "Compassion, Not Cages -- Go Veg!" out of personal faith as a vegetarian. The event was organized by the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA). "It's simple, I love animals so I don't eat them," he said. "We've all seen chickens crammed in cages at butcher shops but nobody stops to think about the trauma they go through, never getting to run...they still feel pain just like you and me." The drive by U.S.-based PETA is the latest animal rights campaign it has run in India. Last year, it demanded a boycott of Indian leather to press for more humane slaughter of cows.




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Exam Motivation for Malaysian Students
Posted on 2002/2/7 22:46:02 ( 663 reads )


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MALAYSIA, February 8, 2002: In August 2001, the Malaysia Hindu Sangam in collaboration with M.I.C.'s Yayasan Strategik Sosial and other organizations launched a community service project known as "Action To Mobilize All Hindus" ("ATMAH"). The project has been initially based in and around the Sri Ganggai Aman Temple, Kampung Medan off Jalan Kelang Lama, Kuala Lumpur. About 80 professionals and business entrepreneurs have volunteered and are actively providing services such as educare, medicare, legal aid, human values, sports, culture, community service, business and spiritual. The group providing educare services conduct tuition classes for school going children in both the primary and secondary levels. About a hundred students are at the moment attending these classes. A special Motivation Camp is being organized for students taking the UPSR, PMR and SPM examinations later this year on February 10. Interested parties should contact Vaithilingam at "Source" above.




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Pramukh Swami Maharaj Consecrates Australia Temple
Posted on 2002/2/7 22:45:02 ( 714 reads )


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ROSEHILL, AUSTRALIA, FEBRUARY 3, 2002: The head of the Bochasanwasi Shree Akshar Purushottam Swaminarayan Sanstha (BAPS), Pragat Brahmaswarup Pramukh Swami Maharaj (Swamiji, for short) attended the consecration ceremonies of the newly-installed marble deities at the Rosehill, Australia Temple. Devotees from Britain, the United States and India, joined the estimated 2,000 Sydney-based BAPS followers in worship. The 81-year-old Swamiji holds the world record for the most temples consecrated, with Rosehill Temple marking number 411. BAPS also made it into the Guinness book of Records with the organization's London headquarters, the Shri Swaminarayan Mandir, recognized as the largest Hindu temple in the world outside India.




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Films on Hinduism at NY Exhibit Face VHP Ire in US
Posted on 2002/2/7 22:44:02 ( 713 reads )


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NEW YORK, USA, February 8, 2002: The Vishwa Hindu Parishad of America has protested to the American Museum of National History here for exhibiting two documentaries. They say the films distort the history of Hinduism and India and have asked for their withdrawal. In a letter to Director of Public Affairs of the museum, Elaine Charnov, General Secretary of the Parishad, Gaurag G. Vaishnav says the documentaries "not only mislead the viewer because of gross distortions of facts but also help advance politically motivated Marxist agenda." The letter says in one of the videos, Rama, the main character in the epic "Ramayana," was an Aryan who enslaved Dravidian people and called them his monkeys. In Indian history, it explained, the word "Arya" has never referred to a race but rather to nobility of spirit, thought and deeds.




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Replica of Tirupati Temple Built Near City of Pune
Posted on 2002/2/6 22:49:02 ( 742 reads )


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PUNE, INDIA, January 31, 2002: The famous Tirupati temple in Andra Pradesh now has a replica near the city of Pune. Pilgrims unable to make it to Tirupati to worship Lord Balaji have built the 7,000-square-foot temple in a 19,000 square foot plot on a site near Pashan Lake. Nestled among green hills, the temple formally installed its Deity on February 4, 2002. Costing over US$320,000, the temple was built by architects Ramkrishna Stapathi and his son Meenakshi Sthapati. Honoring a total of 30 deities, the project was funded in part (50%) by devotees from the city of Pune. Also expected to attract Vedic scholars and students, the complex will expand in the future to include a lecture hall, study room and an ashram for religion classes.




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