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Daily Inspiration


Posted on 2016/11/19 17:28:45 ( 359 reads )

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It is my ambition to conquer the world by Hindu thought.
-- Swami Vivekananda (1863-1902)



The Indian Subcontinent Partition Documentation Project


Posted on 2016/11/18 19:06:12 ( 498 reads )

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NEW YORK, NEW YORK, November 18, 2016 (ISPaD, Sachi G. Dastidar): Several Bengali-Americans in New York, individuals whose families were victims of Partition in the Indian Subcontinent - especially in Bengal - formed a partition documentation project called ISPaD or Indian Subcontinent Partition Documentation Project to save the history and experiences of lost and displaced individuals and families, their villages, their life, and that of survivors and protectors.

ISPaD's purposes include: a. Collection of personal stories of victims of partition of Indian Subcontinent, and that of survivors and protectors; b. Collection of historical records related to Indian Subcontinent partition; c. Study and documentation of partition-related demographic and social changes; d. To publish, disseminate, share stories and documents for readers in New York and beyond; e. To create bridges among partition victims and non-victims in the Subcontinent and in other countries including the U.S.; f. Organize meetings, seminars, scholarly research; g. Collaborate with established academic studies of displacement and genocide; h. To provide funds for partition documentation projects.



Hindu Temples Along Jalan Timah Vandalized


Posted on 2016/11/18 19:03:36 ( 481 reads )

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GEORGE TOWN, MALAYSIA, November 15, 2016 (The Sun Daily): Several statues of Hindu deities at a Hindu temple in Jalan Timah here were found vandalized on Monday evening. Sri Raja Madurai Veeram Temple chairman Michael Anthony said he found the desecration about 6pm when he went to pray at the 180-year-old temple. "I was shocked to see a statue of Ganesh and Madurai damaged with the debris scattered all over the temple floor," he said, adding that volunteers helped clean up the premises which were in a mess with broken pieces everywhere.

Komtar assemblyman Teh Lai Heng, who visited the site, said this was first such incident in his constituency. and hoped police will nab those responsible. He said he will personally contribute US$455 toward the repair works. Northeast district police chief ACP Mior Faridalatrash Wahid said investigations will be carried out under the Penal Code for injuring or defiling a place of worship with intent to insult the religion of any class.



Local Organization Highlighting a Trend in Hindu American Community Service


Posted on 2016/11/18 19:03:15 ( 441 reads )

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USA, November 17, 2016 (by Murali Balaji, HAF): Hindu American Community Services Inc. (HACSI) is a relatively new organization, having started seven years ago as an independent offshoot of the Sri Siva Vishnu Temple in Lanham, Maryland. However, in that time, HACSI has become a force in fighting hunger and homelessness, while providing education and employment opportunities for low-income groups, including the Bhutanese Hindu refugee population. HACSI co-founder Ram Nagula notes that the group's effectiveness and growth in such a short time is due to its volunteers, since it is a solely volunteer-run organization. While HACSI started as a way of helping the homeless and providing resettlement services for the roughly 1750 or so Bhutanese Hindu refugees living in the Baltimore-DC region, Nagula notes that its scope has expanded. He credits the organization's growth to its ability to mobilize volunteers.

Such coordination has been critical in engaging American born Hindus in the DC area, especially those who are not regular attendees at temples. Instead, the practice of selfless service, or seva, has helped HACSI draw from a large volunteer pool. Nagula said this has become critical for Hindu Americans to become integrated into their larger communities, and for Hindu organizations to become more viable as first points of call and assistance. "This is a positive phenomenon among Hindu Americans who are enthused about providing seva," he said. "It is much more so among the young and second generation Hindu Americans.

HACSI has been recognized by the local interfaith community for its work in helping others. The Interfaith Conference of Metropolitan DC awarded them with their prestigious Bridgebuilder Award in 2013.




Daily Inspiration


Posted on 2016/11/18 19:03:04 ( 293 reads )

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Hinduism is an orthodox religion, conservative in its ways and yet pliant and understanding. It is simultaneously the most demanding spiritual path and the most forgiving.
-- Satguru Sivaya Subramuniyaswami (1927-2001), founder of Hinduism Today



Hindu Americans Deeply Concerned About Post-Election Violence and Bias Crime Spike


Posted on 2016/11/16 19:00:00 ( 619 reads )

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WASHINGTON DC, November 16, 2016 (HAF):Leaders of the Hindu American Foundation are deeply concerned about recent incidents of bias-motivated violence and harassment, as well as violence at protests, following the Presidential election. Over the past several days, the Southern Poverty Law Center noted a "big uptick in incidents of vandalism, threats, intimidation spurred by the rhetoric surrounding the recent election." Nazi symbols have been spray-painted in dorms, on walls, and the ground in attempts to intimidate non-whites. There have been numerous incidents of verbal abuse of non-whites across the country, as well as incidents of Muslim women having their hijab pulled, while being verbally harassed. Here at HAF, US-born friends of a Board member were recently told, "Go back to your country." And a member of HAF's National Leadership Council was spat at and chased down a street by a person making obscene gestures.

"While feelings surrounding the election may understandably be running high, incidents of hate and violence are unacceptable in a pluralistic, democratic nation operating under the rule of law," said Suhag Shukla, Esq., the Foundation's Executive Director. If you or someone you know has been harassed, assaulted or threatened with harm, HAF urges that you not stay silent, and report such acts and threats of violence to law enforcement immediately. We also ask that that you help us in tracking incidents of identity-based or bias-motivated intimidation, threats, harassment, and violence being experienced in our communities by filling out this form. To this end, please share this form widely with your networks. Also, if you or someone you know believe like you have been or are being discriminated against on religious grounds, HAF's Know Your Rights provides information about fundamental rights in simple, straightforward terms.



Indian Students in the US at Record High


Posted on 2016/11/16 18:59:42 ( 357 reads )

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UNITED KINGDOM, November 15, 2016 (BBC): The number of Indian students studying in the US soared by 25% to a record high, figures from 2015-2016 show. The 2016 Open Doors data says Indian students contribute more than $5.5bn to the American economy. It comes against the backdrop of a steep decline in Indian students opting for the UK, with one estimate citing a 50% drop in four years. Analysts say tougher visa rules in the UK and the stabilization of the rupee against the dollar explain the trend.

A total of 165,918 Indians are now studying in the US, up from 132,888 in 2014-15, the report says. It is released by the Institute of International Education (IIE) in collaboration with the US State Department's Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs. The report says India accounted for the largest growth in students in the US for the second year in a row, primarily at the "graduate and optional practical training" levels.



Hindu Students Association Launches Shruti Podcast Series


Posted on 2016/11/16 18:59:21 ( 468 reads )

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UNITED STATES, November 16, 2016 (HSA Press Release): Hindu Students Association is proud to announce the release of the first episode of its new podcast series, Shruti. Shruti aims to bring to light the history of Hinduism and important issues affecting Hindus here in the United States and around the world. Shruti, which means "that which is heard," is named after the set of authoritative scriptures of Hindu philosophy. "It seemed appropriate to use the term Shruti," explained Hari Venkatachalam, Vice-President for the Hindu Students Association. "Most of Hinduism's sacred literature wasn't written down until centuries after they were first composed. The knowledge that was contained in these holy books was passed down from teacher to student through recitation and memorization. Our sacred words were first heard, not written. We're hoping that we can share the Hindu experience in the same way, recreating how Hinduism has been passed from generation to generation for millennia."

The first episode in the series "Arrival in the West: Finding a Place in the New Land" is hosted by the national officers of Hindu Students Association. It focuses on the movement of Hinduism to the Americas, and the unique challenges early Hindu immigrants faced as they sought to practice their religion in a foreign land. To listen to the podcast, visit www.hindustudentsassociation.org/podcast. You can subscribe to the Shruti podcast series through Apple iTunes and Google Play, at the links listed below.

Google Play Link: https://play.google.com/music/m/Izfzvn ... oryq6sttnmh3mowi?t=Shruti
Apple iTunes Link: https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/shruti/id1168861683



Daily Inspiration


Posted on 2016/11/16 18:59:11 ( 276 reads )

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Who there be who, like our Lord, knows the great and the small, the difficult and the facile? Only they who, like a tortoise, withdraw the five senses under their shell. They hear and see the here and the beyond, and have all impurities dispelled.
-- Tirumantiram, verse 133



Demonetization of High Rupee Notes Hits Tirumala Temple Pilgrims Hard


Posted on 2016/11/14 19:25:40 ( 666 reads )

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TIRUPATI, INDIA, November 11, 2016 (Sakshi Post): Devotees visiting the Lord Venkateswara temple in Tirumala were hit hard on Wednesday as taxi drivers and owners of hotels and shops refused to accept Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 (US$7.50-15.00) denomination currency notes after the government's sudden move to demonetize them.

The pilgrims, who flock from all over the country to the temple town, had a tough time buying food and other essential items of daily use. Some were facing difficulties even in buying milk for their children. "After reaching at the railway station on Wednesday morning, we learnt that Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes are no longer valid. Since we were travelling, we are carrying only high denomination currency notes," said G. Rammohan, a devotee from Visakhapatnam.

The TTD accepted Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes for darshan tickets. Arrangements were also made to enable devotees swipe their credit and debit cards for accommodation and other services provided by the TTD. With banks and ATMs closed for the day, the pilgrims and visitors had no option but to borrow or buy on credit, or to rough it out. Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanam (TTD), which runs the affairs of the hill shrine - the richest in the country - intervened to provide some succor to the pilgrims. It arranged for free food, snacks and milk for all pilgrims.



Religion Data of Census 2011: 32nd Note-- Arunachal Pradesh Scheduled Tribes


Posted on 2016/11/14 19:25:29 ( 514 reads )

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INDIA, November 13, 2016 (Center for Policy Studies by Anjaneya Bajaj): This thirty-second note on the Religion Data of Census 2011 concerns the Christianisation of many of the very numerous tribes of Arunachal Pradesh. One of the main stories of the Religion Data of Census 2011 is about the Christian penetration into Arunachal Pradesh, a State that had largely escaped Christianisation until recently. We have discussed the issue in our earlier note, Arunachal Joins the Christian Northeast. Now we present the religious profile of individual tribes of the State; this data for 2011 has been released only recently.

Discussion of the individual tribes of Arunachal Pradesh is highly complicated because of the great multiplicity of tribes listed in the Census tabulations. In 2011, the Census lists as many as 105 individual tribes in Arunachal Pradesh; the number was 100 in 2001. This numerousness of the tribes counted in the State has become possible because of the ambiguous language of the Constitutional Order listing the tribes to be included in the Schedule. The Order names only 16 tribes, but says that all tribes of the State including these 16 would be part of the Schedule. This has made the list open-ended.

Many of the tribes listed in the Census are divisions and subdivisions of the same tribe. We have tried to group the numerous tribes into a few groups that are ethnically distinct and inhabit distinct geographical regions of the State. The religion data for these groups indicates that some of the major tribal groups have been fully or largely Christianized, while many of the Buddhist and Hindu tribes have continued to retain their identity.

More at "source" above.



Hindu American Foundation Hiring Two Fulltime Staff Positions: California Regional Associate Director and Associate Director of Membership


Posted on 2016/11/14 19:25:18 ( 465 reads )

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USA, November 14, 2016 (HAF): The Hindu American Foundation seeks applicants for two full time positions.

The position of California Regional Associate Director will develop and expand HAF's presence throughout all parts of the state, including Northern, Central, and Southern California, as well as bordering states in the Western region. This will include designing and implementing advocacy and programmatic initiatives; increasing HAF's fundraising capacity; and building relationships with key local, state, and federal policy makers, interfaith, civil rights, and community leaders, in order to educate them on important issues of concern to the Hindu American community. This position is new to the organization so the Associate Director will have some opportunity to build and carry forward his or her vision and function. This role requires an outgoing, highly energetic individual with excellent communication, research/writing, and organizational skills.

The position of Associate Director of Membership will develop and coordinate community awareness events and membership fundraising drives, and develop and distribute member communication and marketing materials in coordination with other staff. This position is new to the organization so the Associate Director will have some opportunity to build and carry forward his or her vision and function.
For details on how to apply, go to source above. Applicants must be based in the US.

Hinduism Today magazine highly encourages qualified individuals to apply for these important posts in America's foremost advocacy organization.



Daily Inspiration


Posted on 2016/11/14 19:25:08 ( 306 reads )

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A quiet mind is all you need. All else will happen rightly, once your mind is quiet. As the Sun makes the world active with its rays, so does self-awareness change the mind. In its light, energies wake up and work miracles without effort on your part.
-- Nisargadatta Maharaj (1897-1981), Hindu sage



Kerala Takes U-turn in Supreme Court; Favors Women inside Sabarimala Temple


Posted on 2016/11/10 14:34:20 ( 695 reads )

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NEW DELHI, INDIA, November 7, 2016 (New Indian Express): In a U-turn, the Left Democratic Front (LDF) government of Kerala on Monday informed the Supreme Court that it favored the entry of women of all age groups in the historic Sabarimala temple in the state. The counsel for the state government, which had earlier supported the ban on women's entry in the temple in its additional affidavit filed in July this year, told the apex court it will now go by its original response filed in 2007 favoring entry of women in the temple premises.

Initially, the LDF government had taken a progressive stand in 2007 by favoring women's entry in the temple, which was overturned by the Congress-led United Democratic Front dispensation later. However, the UDF, before losing power to the LDF this year, had taken a view that it was against the entry of women of the age group of 10-to-50 years into the temple as such a practice was being followed since time immemorial.

The bench, which has now fixed the matter for hearing on February 13 next year, said the stand of the government is not the final one as it will take a decision after deliberating upon various aspects including the constitutional provisions with regard to gender equality. The apex court had observed that women are conferred rights under the Constitution and it would pass a detailed order in case the matter is referred to a five-judge constitution bench. It had remarked: "a temple is a public religious place. You cannot refuse entry to a woman who comes there ... It violates the rights of women. We understand the seriousness of issue. Every right needs to be balanced but every balancing has its own limitations...".



British PM Theresa May Wears a Saree During India Visit, and Fits Right in.


Posted on 2016/11/10 14:34:09 ( 706 reads )

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INDIA, NOVEMBER 9, 2016 (by Somya Abrol, India Today): British Prime Minister Theresa May visited India for three days to discuss post-Brexit Britain's relations with India, and the way forward. On the final day of her visit, while in Bangalore, May visited the century-old Sri Someshwara Temple clad gracefully in a saree. Taking time off her hectic engagements in the city, May, accompanied by two priests went around the temple at Halasuru, donning a gold and green saree. According to NDTV, May took her temple visit with Hindu priests, who presented her with fruit, a flower garland and a piece of silk, to give as an offering to Lord Shiva.

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