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Militants Kill Two Hindu Pilgrims in Doda District, Kashmir
Posted on 2002/6/15 1:48:02 ( 620 reads )


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KASHMIR, INDIA, June 15, 2002: Muslim militants attacked a procession of pilgrims, firing indiscriminately and lobbing grenades, killing two of them and injuring two others in Khora-Kanthwara area of Kishtwar Tehsil in Doda district on Saturday afternoon. The area is about 300 miles north of Jammu. The militants fired from a hilltop in the area when the procession was on way to Kud Mata Devi, the police sources said. Two of the four seriously injured pilgrims later succumbed to injuries, they said. Security personnel accompanying the procession retaliated forcing the militants to retreat in the forest area, the sources said, adding reinforcement has been rushed from various towns of Doda district to track down the ultras. Several attacks on Hindus have occured in this area over the last few years.




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Looking at Cloning Through a Hindu Perspective
Posted on 2002/6/15 1:47:02 ( 1291 reads )


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TORONTO, CANADA, May 18, 2002: Many religious North Americans believe the idea of cloning amounts to scientists playing God in a way that's dangerous and sinful. According to this article, such concerns are based on the Biblical concept of God and Creation. The advaita or non-dualism philosophy of Hinduism does not separate God from man. Instead, man is engineering Divine Law alongside the architect. In other words, God is executing his will through humans, including scientists. While researching this issue the author, Ajit Adhopia, came across an interesting Hindu viewpoint. By taking a living cell, a scientist can clone the physical structure of an organism, but the process doesn't necessarily duplicate the soul, which means that the cloned person may not possess the characteristics or personality of its original. From a Hindu perspective, if people with bad karmas were to be cloned, their souls may reincarnate in another body, while their cloned bodies may be assigned the souls of others. According to a report summarizing Hindus spiritual leaders' varied thoughts, submitted to Bill Clinton's National Bioethical Advisory committee, "A cloned body might be useful." "Instructions exist in ancient Indian (Hindu) texts explaining how to conceive a child of a passionless and poised nature, all based on the thoughts and yogic practices of the parents during conception," it says, "If that is true, might not cloning, with its total elimination of human sexuality, provide a physical-emotional home for an advanced soul seeking an earthly passage of solace, needing to live without emotion or powerful desires and sentiments?"




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"How to Become a Hindu" Goes On-Line
Posted on 2002/6/15 1:46:02 ( 734 reads )


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KAUAI, HAWAII, June 15, 2002: The ground-breaking book, "How to Become a Hindu" by Satguru Sivaya Subramuniyaswami, has been posted in its entirety at "source" above. The press release reads, "What is it like to enter an Asian religion fully? And how does a Hindu recharge his faith with deeper meaning and life-guidance? Stories from Americans, Canadians and Europeans recounting their dramatic, sometimes intense, passage from Western faiths to Hinduism vivify and clarify this historic religious pattern. Their pioneering tales will fascinate social and religion readers. Marriage between couples of differing faiths is more and more commonplace in a global world. Indo-Americans who are Hindu are often marrying outside their religion, and eventually face upsetting challenges in their married life, especially when it comes to raising children in a religious way. "How to Become a Hindu" offers honest reflection and recommendations for these couples. For Hindu/yoga leaders--ordained and lay--the book is the first-ever how-to guide, an immensely useful tool explaining each step of the way into Hinduism. The core meaning of Hindu identity and Hindu openness to newcomers is explored with stimulating insight, clear perception and powerful voices from India's great thinkers. The idea of conversion to Hinduism is much debated. As this book gently chronicles, conversion is often balked at by overly-westernized Hindus to the degree that misinformation and disinformation litter the debating field. How to Become a Hindu brings together for the first time the historic and contemporary views from scripture and powerful Hindu thinkers that clearly uphold and celebrate an easy, natural passage to Hinduism. Non-Hindus and Hindus alike will find here insights and knowledge not normally found in conventional Hindu books. Includes a name list and comparison of the beliefs of the world's religions."




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UK Heroin Addicts Get Yoga Lessons
Posted on 2002/6/14 1:49:02 ( 644 reads )


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LONDON, ENGLAND, May 20, 2002: Jailed heroin addicts are being taught yoga and acupuncture as part of a unique rehabilitation program. Many who commit crimes to support drug habits are being given the holistic sessions to relieve stress and wean them off their addictions. Prisoners being rehabilitated back into the community and convicted criminals on probation are taking part in this trial program currently offered in Leicestershire and Rutland. Assistant chief officer of Leicestershire and Rutland Probation Service, Paul Hindson, said the program has proven a great success so far. He said: "I have not come across any other schemes in the country that have the range of interventions that we have. A drug user comes with a multitude of problems and we have a multitude of ways to deal with those problems. Some things we do are standard process across the country, like group sessions and developing life skills. But we also have a number of alternative methods like yoga and acupuncture."




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Development Ruining Bali's Beach Rituals
Posted on 2002/6/14 1:48:02 ( 703 reads )


Source: Jakarta Post





BALI, INDONESIA, June 13, 02: The Balinese consider the sea a holy place that plays a crucial role in their lives, either through religion or culture. They consider the sea as the beginning and the end of one's life cycle. They take tirtha (holy waters) from the sea to be used for purification and rituals. The Balinese people pay homage to the sea and preserve it as a most precious asset. Before many rituals in major Hindu temples or special events, devotees form processions and carry flowers and fruit offerings toward many beaches. Entire beaches and coastlines in Bali were left untouched for centuries, until the province was developed to become Indonesia's most prominent tourist destination in the early 1960s. Investors hunt for beach locations to make way for tourism-related development projects including hotels, villas and golf courses. A former Bali governor, I. B. Oka, issued a decree in the 1990s that allowed investors to develop tourist facilities and manage the coastal areas in front of their properties. The decree also shifted the function of beaches from the social and religious domain to limited and restricted business facilities. Since then, parts of the coastline have been closed to the public. Local Hindus believe the public's right to use, enjoy and to perform religious ceremonies that should be held in beach areas have been denied by government regulation and by developers.




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Youth Meet in California
Posted on 2002/6/14 1:47:02 ( 725 reads )


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SUNNYVALE, CALIFORNIA, June 14, 2002: The Hindu Swayamsevak Sangh of the Greater Bay Area presents the First Annual Summer Hindu Youth Forum on Saturday June 22, 2002 at Serra Park in Sunnyvale, California, from 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM. Hindu youth ages 13 to 20 from all over the San Francisco Bay Area will join together to discuss, and understand Indian culture and Hinduism. The Keynote Speaker will be Colleen B. Wilcox, Ph.D., Santa Clara County Superintendent of Schools. For more information, click "source" above.




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On-Line Video Clip Shows Ancient India Method of Stone Moving
Posted on 2002/6/14 1:46:02 ( 693 reads )


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KAUAI, HAWAII, June 14, 2002: Click "source" above to view a short video clip from the on-going construction of the all-stone Iraivan Temple in Hawaii. It depicts the ancient hand method moving two 4,000 pound stones by just five men.




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First Tamil Bhakti Literature Conference
Posted on 2002/6/14 1:45:02 ( 756 reads )


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CHENNAI, INDIA, June 14, 2002: The World Tamil Elakkiya Bhakti Society will host the First Tamil Bhakti Literature Conference on June 19 to 21 at Narada Gana Sabha, T.T.K Road, Alwarpet, Chennai, 600 018. The event will be attended by spiritual leaders and Tamil scholars. The objective of the conference is to bring a new awareness to the younger generation in bhakti, culture and literature as a way of life. The three days event includes speech, dialog, and music. For further information please contact Kizhambur Sankarasubramanian at "source" above.




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Puri Chariots to Use Recycled Wood
Posted on 2002/6/13 1:49:02 ( 736 reads )


Source: Aajtak Hindi Channel





PURI, ORISSA, INDIA, June 13, 2002: Like every year the construction of chariots is at peak in Puri, this year it is as well. But the change in tradition this year is that this time even old wood is also being used for construction. The government has banned the unrestrained cutting of trees this year. For the rath yatra (chariot procession) three chariots are made and around 3,000 trees are cut every year for this purpose. This cutting of trees is having an adverse affect on the availability of trees in this area. To avoid this, this time forty percent old wood is being used for the construction of the chariots. According to Maharaja Divya Singhdev, chairman of the Puri Temple Management Committee, most of the wood used in building the chariots goes to the temple kitchen. The Orissa government believes that in the times to come there will not be any shortage of wood for the purpose of building the chariots. They have initiated a plan under which trees have been planted for this purpose in an area of 7,000 hectares. A bank has also been floated to preserve the wood gifted by devotees.




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Tamil Nadu Temple Renovations in Question
Posted on 2002/6/13 1:48:02 ( 365 reads )


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RAMESWARAM, TAMIL NADU, June 10, 2002: The ancient Ramanathaswamy temple in Rameswaram, an island on the southernmost tip of Tamil Nadu, stands where Hindu pilgrims from across the country seek to wash away their sins in the 22 wells (teerthas) that dot its corridors. Not many bother to stop by and look at what's happened over the years to the legendary third corridor, the longest in India --1.2 km and 1,212 pillars -- built between 1740 and 1770. Tourism brochures still vouch for the 12th century temple's "magnificent corridors and massive sculptured pillars. Over the years, salty sea breeze had been eating into the limestone pillars. So, its executive officer, a state government employee, simply decided to plaster them with cement. Muthaiah Sthapathi, HR&CE department's official consultant, says he was not aware of this 'Operation Cement.' "Restoration using local masons is unacceptable. Good sculptors/sthapathis must supervise such operations. The whitewashing is also wrong." Sandblasting is the other major threat. Muthaiah is against the use of this technique -- sand at high pressure is directed at the surface in combination with air or water. It destroys the fine details.




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Advani: Two Hundred Policemen Died in Gujarat Riots
Posted on 2002/6/13 1:47:02 ( 822 reads )


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DELHI, INDIA, June 13, 2002: The following is excerpted from an interview in the Asia edition of Time Magazine: "Time talks with Krishna Lal Advani, India's Home Minister and the man tipped by many as the hardline hand behind Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee. TIME: Why do people call you a hardliner? Advani: It's simple. These phrases, hawkish, hardliner, strongman--they make for good copy. TIME: Turning to your own portfolio, are you happy with what happened in Gujarat? [On February 27, a crowd of Muslims burned nearly 60 Hindu devotees alive in a train at Ghodra, an event that led Hindu extremists to riot across the state of Gujarat. Unofficial death tolls count more than 2,000 dead, the overwhelming majority Muslims, and the violence continues to this day.] Advani: Ghodra was horrible, but what happened afterwards was equally reprehensible. We cannot condone either. But it did give me satisfaction that the government took action against the wrongdoers. TIME: Most people would say the opposite, that the police and the state apparatus stood back and let the violence happen, and that nothing has happened to them. Advani: Nearly 200 policemen died, so I do not think there was any complicity from them. And as for [hardline Hindu nationalist Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra] Modi, if there was any evidence of his complicity or being inactive, he would have been punished. He himself offered to resign, and we all said: Why?"




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The Mango, India's National Fruit, Gets Celebrated
Posted on 2002/6/13 1:46:02 ( 656 reads )


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CHENNAI, INDIA, June 10, 2002: A little over 100 varieties of mangoes were on display as south India's biggest mango festival got under way in the Tamil Nadu town of Krishnagiri. The All-India Mango Exhibition, as the show is known, is an annual event that takes place in different parts of India. It showcases mangoes from all corners of the country. At a seminar, experts will present papers on India's national fruit. A music festival has been organized on the occasion. Authorities at Krishnagari, 400 km west of Chennai, have set up a mango park for children where all decorations resemble mangoes.




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Bangladesh Hindus Protest 1972 Constitution
Posted on 2002/6/13 1:45:02 ( 724 reads )


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DHAKA, BANGLADESH, June 10, 2002: Bangladesh Hindu Bouddha Christian Oikkya Parishad observed Black Day all over the country yesterday. On this day in 1988, Islam as the state religion was incorporated in the Constitution of the Republic through its eighth amendment, said a press release of the organization. On the occasion, at the central Shaheed Minar the parishad organized a rally which the demanded restoration of the 72 constitution that enshrines secularism. Speakers at the rally said that secularism was one of the objectives of the Liberation War. They also condemned what they called continued communal riots in the country. Presided over by Neem Chandra Bhowmik, the rally was addressed among others by Siril Sikder, Bashu Dev Dhar and Parimal Dey.




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Forum for Caribbean Hindu Unity
Posted on 2002/6/13 1:44:02 ( 765 reads )


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RICHMOND HILL, NEW YORK, June 13, 2002: The Forum for Caribbean Unity will hold a meeting Saturday, June 22, from 1:00 pm to 8:00 pm at P. S. 161, 101-33 124 Street, Richmond Hill, Queens, NY. The keynote speaker is Pujya Swami Aksharanandaji, a Hindu scholar and monk from Guyana. Other community leaders will speak. As well plans for the Siewdass Sadhu Cultural Centers in Bharat will be explained. For information, agenda and participation call Rajendra Bassit 718-441-5301.




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Short Profile of India's Proposed New President
Posted on 2002/6/12 1:49:02 ( 664 reads )


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DELHI, INDIA, June 11, 2002: In his first attempt, he failed the Indian Air Force pilot test. Today, he's all set to become supreme commander of all the armed forces. Dr A P J Abdul Kalam Azad, age 71, former principal scientific advisor to the prime minister, is a man of few words. His is an amazing story, which begins as a young boy selling newspapers at Rameshwaram station and is now likely to continue in the corridors of Rashtrapati Bhavan. India's missile man is a reluctant interviewee. When Bombay Times caught up with him a few months ago, his first reaction was: "Why me?" The 30-minute drive from the airport to his lecture venue went in persuading him to talk, after which he agreed. The nuclear man is a simple person -- he doesn't have TV at home, refuses to read newspapers and is only accessible via the net. He never fails to tell his host not to pay for his airfare since he can avail of free air travel, thanks to his Bharat Ratna status, a high state honor. The father of the Indian missile program, Kalam has been busy with his new passion -- teaching. "I want to ignite young minds, which are a powerful resource," he says. As a boy, Kalam was enthralled by the skies. "I will fly one day," he told his mother. He was not only the first boy from Rameshwaram to fly, he also took India's defense capability to new heights. "Dream, dream, dream. Dreams are important, dreams work," he told Mumbai students. This dream has surely come true.




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