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Beliefnet Filing for Bankruptcy Protection
Posted on 2002/4/13 1:48:02 ( 847 reads )


Source: Religion News Service





USA, April 11, 2002: A co-founder of Beliefnet, a Web site devoted to religion and spirituality, said today that his company intends to file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. A pending sale of the company fell through, and Beliefnet was forced into bankruptcy. It was an innovative concept, putting forward news, resources and discussions for each of the world's major religions, but like many Internet enterprises, was never successful in making money. The venture capitalists funding it backed out. The company has about 5 million e-mail newsletter subscribers, most of whom receive daily inspirational messages, including Bible passages, horoscopes and daily wisdom from Hindu, Buddhist, Jewish and Muslim sources.




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Texas Hindu Students' Council "Best on Campus"
Posted on 2002/4/13 1:47:02 ( 780 reads )


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TEXAS, April 13, 2002: For a second time, the University of Texas Hindu Students' Council has been recognized as the best campus organization. HSC at the University of Texas has done a great job in making the campus aware of Hinduism and the issues affecting Hindus around the world. This year, the organization has put on several programs that have made an impact on campus, including a Diwali Pooja and Navaratri Garba/Raas (which drew over 800 people), a Hindu camp for younger children (to teach children to be proud of their Hindu heritage and culture), movie nights to raise money for Sept 11 victims, SEVA projects, and several programs in support of the Dharma-Life project. HSC has also been part of many cultural programs in coordination with other groups at UT, including ICA (Indian Cultural Association), ISA (Indian Students Association), and TUC (Texas Union Council). For more information on the chapter, contact "source" above.




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Delhi RK Mission Opens New School
Posted on 2002/4/13 1:46:02 ( 768 reads )


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JAHLAKA, INDIA, April 10, 2002: April 4, 2002 was a special day in the life of Swami Gokulanandaji, secretary of Ramakrishna Mission, Delhi. The day marked the inauguration of his "cherished dream project" -- Vivekananda International School at the school campus, Ramakrishna Palli, in Jahlaka village outside Delhi. In his welcome note Debasis Bagchi, president, Vivekananda Trust, said: "It's a red-letter day in the life of everyone who is associated with the trust." Following the welcome note, S.M. Ghosh, principal of the school, spoke about how exultant he was to be a part of this project. "I have been a principal for the past 37 years, but never have I felt so much pride before. I was very happy to know that on the very first day when we started registering students for our first batch, we received 105 applications of which 29 are from states like Bihar," said Ghosh.




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Teacher of Vipassana Meditation to Tour North America
Posted on 2002/4/13 1:45:02 ( 720 reads )


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USA, April 10, 2002: S N Goenka, the internationally known teacher of meditation, will conduct a four-month tour of North America, April to August, 2002. He will teach and speak about the ancient Buddhist meditation practice of Vipassana throughout the United States and Canada. During the tour, Mr. Goenka will give public talks in 35 cities; participate in ten-day meditation courses in Massachusetts, Washington, and British Columbia; teach at numerous one-day meditation courses for returning students, and participate in a special ten-day retreat for leaders and executives. He will speak at the Spirit in Business conference in New York, address the United Nations to mark the Buddha's birth date, and meet with business and government leaders and with corrections officials where Vipassana courses are offered to inmates. For details click on source above.




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Groups Seeks Information on Traditional Indian Games
Posted on 2002/4/13 1:44:02 ( 786 reads )


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GRAND RAPIDS, MICHIGAN, April 13, 2002: The International Forum for India's Heritage was formed in Delhi last November with 151 founding members. One project of the Forum is to collect information on games of Indian origins. It is considered of great importance to recording and preservation of Bhaaratiya culture and history. If you'd like to help with this project, contact Renu Malhotra at "source" above.




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Seven Killed in Terrorist Attack in Udhampur
Posted on 2002/4/10 1:49:02 ( 823 reads )


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JAMMU, INDIA, April 8, 2002: Heavily armed terrorists shot dead seven Hindus, including two women and their daughters, and lobbed grenades on some houses in a village in Udhampur district on Sunday night after a fierce gun battle with the members of the Village Defence Committee (VDC), official sources said on Monday. The slain Hindus have been identified as Shoba Ram, Ganpati Devi and her six-year-old daughter Santosh, Lal Devi and her four-year-old daughter Srishtu Devi, Shanker Dass and Somi Lal. Three more Hindus, including a girl, were injured in the firing. The terrorists later lobbed grenades at some houses as a result of which ten houses were gutted. Though no terrorist outfit has so far claimed responsibility for the attack, intelligence sources said it could be the handiwork of either Jaish-e-Mohammed or Lashker-e-Taiba.




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Plan to Restore Thaipusam 'Spirit in Malaysia
Posted on 2002/4/10 1:48:02 ( 786 reads )


Source: Press Release





KUALA LUMPUR, MALAYSIA, April 7, 2002: The National Hindu Advisory board will be drafting guidelines on proper religious practices during the annual Thaipusam festival, Malaysia Hindu Sangam president A Vaithilingam stated. He said the Malaysia Hindu Sangam had received numerous complaints that the festival, celebrated during the full moon in the month of Thai in the Hindu calendar, has become commercialized rather than a period of spirituality. About one million people, including tourists, converge at the Sri Subramaniam Temple in Batu Caves, while thousands attend the Thaipusam celebrations in temples nationwide. Vaithilingam said there were complaints of high charges for archana (individual prayer ceremony), the carrying of kavadi and milk pots during the festival in Batu Caves, and calls to cut down the number of stalls and restrict them to selling religious paraphernalia. He said that although Hindu devotees or temples were not obligated to follow the guidelines, he hoped they would carry them out in the interest of the religion. The board comprises 15 members including three Hindu swamis. Vaithilingam said the board had been meeting regularly to discuss the proper ways to conduct prayers in temples, following a uniform Hindu calendar, overcoming the shortage of priests and drawing up the guidelines.




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Top US Peace Award for Ela Gandhi
Posted on 2002/4/10 1:47:02 ( 767 reads )


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DURBAN, SOUTH AFRICA, April 7, 2002: Member of Parliament Ela Gandhi will walk in the footsteps of her famous grandfather when she becomes the ninth recipient of a prestigious international prize on Friday. Gandhi, a Hindu, was named as the recipient of the Community of Christ International Peace Award in December last year by the church group, based in Independence, Missouri. She will receive a bronze sculpture and a cash prize of $26,500, to be given to charities of her choice, at the organization's world conference. According to the organization's official website, the award is among the top seven peace awards in the US and one of the top 20 in the world. "The award is special because it is given to me by a Christian organization and I am Hindu. Yet, they have acknowledged the work I have done to promote inter-faith dialogue in South Africa," said Gandhi. The website said she had been recognized for her "non-violent commitment to overthrow apartheid in South Africa, her passion for working to overcome poverty and assist the vulnerable, and her work to build understanding among world religions." On Tuesday, Gandhi will visit the United Nations in New York where she and family members of the late Martin Luther King will present the Gandhi King Non-Violence Award. In Missouri, she will be hosted by several schools and women's groups and will also be honored by the mayor of Kansas City at a special ceremony.




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New Jersey Children to Perform Play in Sanskrit
Posted on 2002/4/10 1:46:02 ( 789 reads )


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EDISON, NEW JERSEY, April 10, 2002: The Edison Balagokulam (children's school) is celebrating second anniversary of monthly Ramayan paat by Ramayan Mahilaa Samiti, New Jersey, on April 20, according to this announcement by Ramachandra Kamath ("source" above). During this celebration there will be a Ramayan play by 33 children, aged between 10 months and 11 years, with dialogues in Sanskrit, songs in Hindi and Sanskrit and narration in English. Please inform your friends and family and join us in encouraging our future generation to preserve our rich and powerful culture. There will be displays related to Ramayana. The event takes place at the Durga Mandir in Kendal, New Jersey. For more information, contact Ramachandra Kamath at "source" above, or phone at 908-822-1335.




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Houston Student 2002 Jefferson Award Winner
Posted on 2002/4/10 1:45:02 ( 902 reads )


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HOUSTON, TEXAS, April, 5, 2002: A Houston Clear Lake High School student from the South Asian community has been recognized for her "outstanding public service" and has won the Jefferson Award for Community Service for the year 2002. Shruti Iyer was nominated for this prestigious award, considered the Nobel Prize of Volunteering, by the Scoliosis Association Inc. of Boca Raton, Florida. She is being honored for her exemplary community service in local, national and international stratas. An exceptionally gifted vocalist and violinist in the Karnatic style of music and a student of Lalgudi G. J. R. Krishnan and Vittal Ramamurthi, Shruti played regularly at hospitals as well as nursing homes, bringing music into the lives of patients. An avid artist, she has had her pastel artwork made into greeting cards benefitting the Scoliosis Association. Shruti has done extensive research in ways of reducing and eliminating musculoskeletal pain in children with idiopathic scoliosis and in those without scoliosis, making a significant impact globally. Shruti has also been profiled by the American Journal of Public Health, which hailed her as public health activist and a global researcher. Shruti is the daughter of Ravi and Hema Iyer.




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Dance Expressions Portray Role Models for South Asian Women
Posted on 2002/4/10 1:44:02 ( 837 reads )


Source: New Straits Times





KUALA LUMPUR, MALAYSIA, April 4, 2002: Trained in the classical dance art forms of Manipuri, Bharatanatyam and Kathakali from a very young age, Dr. Ananya Chatterjea now uses the dance form of Odissi to express strong woman characters with integrity and high self-esteem. " I think societies are generally afraid of women who are confident, intelligent and in charge of their lives. That is why inhuman practices have been instituted against them in societies across the world, " she says. As artistic director of Women in Motion (a performing company of South Asian women artists) in the United States, Ananya has been able to use the Indian classical Odissi dance to perform art centered around contemporary issues such as how women of color despite everyday struggles are able to assert themselves in as dignified manner. In 1978, she directed a hit performance centered around "A Wife's Letter," a suicide note by a young woman living in Hyderabad. Ananya inspired and instilled confidence in women and children from the surrounding community. Dr. Chatterjea has also portrayed women characters from the Hindu epics such as the Ramayana in a different manner. For example, Sita is depicted as a leader in peace movements. By these depictions, Ananya hopes to create images of strong, confident women as role models for South Asian women.




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Beer-Bearing Ganesha Protested in UK
Posted on 2002/4/10 1:43:02 ( 713 reads )


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LONDON, ENGLAND, April 7, 2002: A section of nonresident Indians in the UK are up in arms against the use of the image of Lord Ganesha as a carrier and advertiser of beers. The objectionable photograph appeared under the title "Indian Summer Food and Drink" depicted in the Sunday Observer today shows Lord Ganesha carrying a glass of pale ale in one hand and showing the initials IPA (a beer called "India Pale Ales") in the third of the four-armed image. A spokesman of the Leicester-based Hindu community said the advertisement was bad in taste and affected the religious feelings of Hindus. The write-up under the image said, "As everyone who has stepped inside a pub knows, the hunger created by a few pints can be extinguished only by a meal from the Indian subcontinent."




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18th International Ramayana Conference Announced
Posted on 2002/4/10 1:42:02 ( 859 reads )

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Tiruvannamalai Preparing for Kumbabhishekam
Posted on 2002/4/9 1:49:02 ( 765 reads )


Source: The Hindu





TIRUVANNAMALAI, INDIA, April 3, 2002: With the kumbabhishekam, or rededication blessing, of the Sri Arunachaleswara Temple scheduled for June 27, a major portion of the renovation of the sannadhis (structures housing the individual deities), the gopurams (entrance towers) and the Ayirankal Mandapam (1000-pillared hall) has been completed. The kumbabhishekam, to be performed after a gap of 26 years, will follow the the four-year long renovation project. For the first time, panchavarnam (five-color painting) has been done for all the sannadhis. A Narpathinaalu Kal Mandapam (44-pillared hall) is being constructed in front of the eastern gopuram to replace the Padhinaru Kal Mandapam (16-pillared hall), destroyed in a fire five years ago. The entire work is expected to be completed in another 15 days, according to P Jayaraman, executive officer of the temple.




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Software for Temple Management Launched
Posted on 2002/4/9 1:48:02 ( 824 reads )


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BANGALORE, INDIA, April 6, 2002: Ganati, a temple management software was launched by Sri Raghavendra Seva Samithi and Mediateck on Saturday. Greater responsibilities of religious institutions that function as trusts or government bodies brought about the development of this software. Ganati was developed to bring in efficiency and transparency in various functions of the temple such as administration, transactions, manpower availability, fund flow, etc. At the launch on Saturday, his Holiness Sri Sri Vishwesha Theertha Swamiji of Sri Pejawar Mutt was the chief guest. According to officials at Mediateck, Ganati will specifically address billing and accounting procedures, documentation of hundi collections, inventory management of utility articles to valuable ornaments, as well as stores maintenance to purchases, HR functions and trust affairs as part of the everyday temple procedures. The software has already been implemented at the Sri Raghavendra Swamy Mutt at Sanjaynagar.




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