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Indonesian Locals Preserves Hindu Culture

Posted on 2019/6/22 11:07:23 ( 318 reads )


YOGYAKARTA, INDONESIA, June 21, 2019 (Deccan Chronicle): It is widely known that Indonesia was once ruled by a Hindu kingdom. However, centuries after the fall of that kingdom, the values of Hinduism are still being preserved by locals in the region. In many parts of the country which has a predominant Muslim (approximately 83 per cent) population, Hindu temples, scriptures, murals and sculptures of Hindu Gods and Goddesses are still preserved.

In an interaction with ANI, officials from the Ministry of Tourism said Sanskrit words are weaved into the local language. An example of this, an official said, is the motto of the Indonesian Navy - "Jalasyeva Jayamahe" ("On the sea we are victorious") - which is coined from Sanskrit. Another major attraction in Yogyakarta city for locals and tourists alike is the musical rendition of the epic tale Ramayana that is performed at regular intervals at the historic 9th century Prambanan temple, which is now a UNESCO world cultural heritage. By establishing a connection with Hinduism, officials believe that tourism and an exchange of culture between India and Indonesia can largely flourish.

Yoga's Share in the Multi-Billion Dollar Fitness Industry

Posted on 2019/6/22 11:07:05 ( 275 reads )


UNITED STATES, June 21, 2019 (Industry Leaders Magazine): Yoga's share in the fitness industry becomes apparent in the sheer number of yoga practitioners around the world. According to a 2016 research by Yoga Alliance, there are 300 million Yoga practitioners around the world with 36 million practitioners in the US alone. Yoga Alliance also noted that in 2016, there were more than 6,000 Yoga studios in the US. Yoga's share in the fitness industry - complete with yoga studios, yoga clothing and accessories, and yoga retreats, is surging and all kinds of yoga - power, Vinyasa, hot, cold and even beer yoga and goat yoga, is booming. A study showed that around $80 billion is spent on Yoga worldwide including yoga classes, yoga retreats, clothing, and equipment.

Daily Inspiration

Posted on 2019/6/22 11:06:52 ( 307 reads )


In shallow men the fish of little thoughts cause much commotion. In oceanic minds the whales of inspiration make hardly a ruffle.
-- Swami Sri Yukteswar Giri (1855-1936), guru of Satyananda Giri and Paramahansa Yogananda

Singapore's Key Religious Organisations Affirm Commitment to Religious Harmony

Posted on 2019/6/21 12:04:14 ( 335 reads )


SINGAPORE, June 19, 2019 (Channel News Asia): Representative bodies of Singapore's key religious communities have affirmed their commitment to safeguard religious harmony in the country. More than 250 organisations have put their names to the commitment, including the Catholic Archdiocese, Hindu Advisory Board, Islamic Religious Council of Singapore, National Council of Churches of Singapore, Sikh Advisory Board, Singapore Buddhist Federation, and Taoist Federation. Singapore President Halimah Yacob received a commemorative version of the commitment from Venerable Seck Kwang Phing, the president of the Singapore Buddhist Federation, at the opening ceremony of the International Conference on Cohesive Societies (ICCS) on Wednesday (Jun 19). He presented it on behalf of the National Steering Committee on Racial and Religious Harmony.

The commitment is more than just a pledge, however. In fact, it is seen as an enhancement to the existing Declaration of Religious Harmony, in that it lays out specific ways for Singaporeans to interact with each other. This includes eating together even if there are different religious dietary practices at the table, and attending weddings and funerals even if they are held in a place of worship that is not of one's faith. Culture, Community and Youth Minister Grace Fu emphasized the importance of these people-to-people interactions. "Very important point is that we see that on a day-to-day basis, all of us actually can play a part to promote that trusting relations between people," said Ms. Fu. "So these daily encounters, daily interactions, help to build trust and I think that's an important point about building the resilience and the long lasting peace."

More at "source".

Hindu Students Council Discusses "How to Be a Woke Hindu" at Annual Camp

Posted on 2019/6/21 12:04:01 ( 354 reads )


WALDEN, NEW YORK, June 17, 2019 (Vertical Response): Students and young professionals from the tri-state area and as far as Washington, D.C., Boston and Chicago, came to attend Hindu Students Council (HSC)'s annual camp during the Memorial Day weekend at Shanti Mandir, in Walden, NY. Now in its 29th year, the camp helps young Hindus form a community and learn more about their heritage and culture from experts and from each other. This year's camp was framed around the theme "How to Be a Woke Hindu." "In a nutshell, 'Being a Woke Hindu' means understanding both the issues that face the American Hindu community, along with the issues that face the global community, and how we, as young Hindus, can use the teachings of Hindu Dharma to help make a change for the positive," explained HSC's President Parth Parihar. "Part of the problem our community faces is that we lack young, confident ambassadors. HSC is changing that."

The camp sessions kicked off with a talk by Shanti Mandir's resident-acharya Vivek Desai on Upanishadic wisdom and its relevance to our own lives. Accompanying this were a series of five Tedx-style "lightning talks" given by HSC leaders, each on a core topic--key scriptures, karma, dharma, Hindu symbols, and yoga--that Hindus should know about and be able to articulate to others. Thus, much of Saturday focused on conveying Hindu dharma's core teachings and basic philosophies to attendees so that they could inspire further exploration and changes in their own lives. The camp sessions also empowered attendees to communicate these fundamentals to others. Debopriyo Biswas, a graduating senior from Princeton University and hailing from Bangladesh said, "camp helped me understand aspects of Hindu Dharma on a deep level and how to communicate that with people who are either interested in learning or have misconceptions about my tradition."

More on the camp at "source" above.

Daily Inspiration

Posted on 2019/6/21 12:03:40 ( 344 reads )


Aim high, aim at the highest, and all lower aims are thereby achieved. It is looking below on the stormy sea of differences that makes you sink. Look up, beyond these and see the One Glorious Real, and you are saved.
-- Ramana Maharishi (1879-1950), Indian guru

Colorful Temple on Penang Hill Ready to Draw Devotees and Tourists

Posted on 2019/6/20 12:00:12 ( 369 reads )


GEORGE TOWN, MALAYSIA, June 14, 2019 (Free Malaysia Today): The only Hindu temple on Penang Hill here is set to become a grand tourist attraction after undergoing major restoration work as part of its 12-year consecration ceremony culminating today. The 150-year old Sri Aruloli Thirumurugan temple has been painted a myriad of colors in a unique "mambalabaram" style, the first such attempt outside of India. Over 132 gallons of paint were used to get more than 20 different shades of color, its chief artisan GK Udhaya Shankar Sthabathi said. He said US$48,000 and three years were spent to complete the painting and structural repairs with the help of 31 artisans from India.

The temple is 2,460 feet above sea level, overlooking Penang Hill's northern jungles and the Melaka Strait. The temple began as a small shrine in the 1870s, when Europeans were borne to the top of the hill in sedan chairs by Indian carriers. A proper temple was built in the 1970s as a place of worship for the Indians, who were easily the largest community at the hill resort. They were mostly the helpers of affluent residents staying in posh bungalows. Temple chief Arunasalam "Raja" Marimuthu said today's consecration will be attended by dozens of yogis from India and around the world. He said water collected from the sacred rivers of Kailash and Kasi will be used in the consecration ceremony.

Dominica's Education Minister Says Reading the Bible in Schools Would Clash with Voodoo and Hinduism

Posted on 2019/6/20 11:43:19 ( 363 reads )


SANTO DOMINGO, DOMINICAN REPUBLIC, June 13, 201 (Somos Pueblo, translated from Spanish) Education Minister Antonio Pena Mirabal insisted on his opposition to reading the Bible in schools because there is religious diversity in schools. "In the public schools of this country there are thousands of Haitian students who practice in voodoo. So, what are we going to do with them? Or with another child who, for example, practices Hinduism?" he said. The official explained that although it is in Law 44-00, it violates the Constitution, which establishes freedom of belief.

"The reading of the Bible will not be mandatory in all schools in the country," he said. "That makes no sense. The Bible, which is an eminently spiritual book, you can not impose it in a mandatory way." The Minister of Education said that in the Dominican Republic there are people of different religious beliefs. "Spirituality is a mandatory right of every human being. I am a Catholic, I was born and raised in an eminently Catholic home. Even so, the act of forcing schools to read the Bible does not make any sense."

Daily Inspiration

Posted on 2019/6/20 11:43:06 ( 401 reads )


Realize the truest reality, the real power, that you are; Infinite you are, above all danger and difficulty.
-- Swami Rama Thirtha (1873-1906), Hindu teacher and lecturer

How Bharata Natyam Came to Montreal

Posted on 2019/6/12 11:10:41 ( 701 reads )


QUEBEC, CANADA, May 30, 2019 (The Hindu by Priyamvada Sankar): It has been a saga of 50 years as I adopted the country, which gave back to me generously. Within a few weeks of my arrival in North America, as a new bride, thanks to the contacts of my father Dr. V. Raghavan, I was invited by the Syracuse University and the Colgate University, both situated in upper New York State and renowned for their Music and Dance as well as Sanskrit study departments. My performances -- both lecture-demonstrations and Bharatanatyam were well received by the audience, from the U.S. and Canada. After that there was no looking back, as the cliche goes. A student of legend Balasaraswati, I began in a small way starting a school for Bharatanatyam. Soon I started the Priyamvada Sankar School of Bharata Natyam in Montreal in the Fall of 1968. The first of its kind in Montreal.

The silver jubilee of the Priyamvada Sankar School of Bharata Natyam was celebrated in 1994 with shows at different venues in Greater Montreal. Our school continues to engage with other cultural communities and we are regularly invited by the Jewish schools, African, Italian and Greek communities, Church organizations, Bahai, Buddhist and other religious groups. It is with humility that I have to state here that I'm the longest serving member of the Interfaith Council of Montreal I was humbled when I was conferred Order of Merit by the Brossard City and the National Association for Canadians of Indian Origin (NACOI) honored me as the Outstanding Indo-Canadian. The Government of Quebec awarded the Medal of the National Assembly. It was an honor to be a member of Montreal elite, chosen to meet the Dalai Lama during his visit to Canada.

Much more at "source" above.

Why Koenraad Elst Is Important for Hindutva

Posted on 2019/6/12 11:10:27 ( 685 reads )


U.S., MAY 7, 2019 (Swarajyamag by Aravindan Neelakandan): Belgian Indologist Dr. Koenraad Elst is a dangerous scholar. With a cruel pleasure the establishment media and mediocre scholars bracket him with crackpots and zealots. Interestingly, both the establishment Hindutva side (as far as that exists) as well as the newly emerging Internet Hindutva types are not exactly comfortable with him. Nevertheless, when the dust settles, his books will stand as invaluable testimony and source to express the Hindutva side of things in the most honest manner possible. Blunt but honest. His latest book "Still No Trace of an Aryan Invasion" ( Aryan Books International, 2018) is a significant addition to the Aryan invasion/migration (AIT/AMT) and out-of-India theory (OIT) debates. There are 30 essays in this collection. These include in-depth analyses of issues related to caste, ethnicity and race, and book reviews, and rejoinders.

An in-depth review can be read at "source".

Daily Inspiration

Posted on 2019/6/12 11:10:10 ( 714 reads )


Only two kinds of people can attain self-knowledge: those who are not encumbered at all with learning, that is to say, whose minds are not over-crowded with thoughts borrowed from others; and those who, after studying all the scriptures and sciences, have come to realize that they know nothing.
-- Sri Ramakrishna (1836-1886), famed guru of Swami Vivekananda

Fifth International Conference Mount Kailash Held in Germany

Posted on 2019/6/11 12:22:06 ( 680 reads )


HAMBURG, GERMANY, June 10, 2019 (Universitat Hamburg): Mt. Kailash in the far west of Tibet is one of the holiest mountains in the world, revered by Hindus, Buddhists, Jains and Boenpo. During the last two decades, also Westerners set out for this remote region. Improved infrastructure and more liberal issuing of permits let their number and very much that of Indian pilgrims increase on a large scale. In addition to traditional rules for Tibetan and Indian pilgrims, new regulations to preserve the landscape of Mt. Kailash and neighboring pilgrimage sites were put into force. New observations and explorations in the region of Mt. Kailash and surrounding pilgrimage sites were reported in recent publications and since 2014 discussed in international conferences on the phenomenon of the holy Mt. Kailash.

Another international Kailash conference, the "5th International Conference on the Phenomenon of the Holy Mt. Kailash" with the subtitle "Compilation of Traditional and New Aspects of Mt. Kailash and Surrounding Pilgrimage Sites," will take place at the University of Hamburg, Germany, March 21-22, 2020. The aim of this conference is to compile both traditional and new aspects in the knowledge of the holy Mt. Kailash and surrounding pilgrimage sites, their interpretation and comparison with old scriptures and tantric vision. Data on Mt. Kailash and the holy lakes will be introduced and systemized. The knowledge of this sacred region in Tibet will be shared, cooperation in further scientific investigation discussed.

For more information about the conference see "source" above.

Sri Siva Vishnu Temple Holds Town Hall on Caribbean Hinduism

Posted on 2019/6/11 12:21:53 ( 723 reads )


WASHINGTON, DC, June 5, 2019 (HAF): Lanham, Maryland's Sri Siva Vishnu Temple Center for Dharma Education hosted a town hall Saturday, June 1, on the importance of the Caribbean Hindu community in advancing Hinduism in the Diaspora, as well as some of the challenges many Diasporic Hindus face in the United States. The town hall, "Bhakti in Berbice and Beyond," was co-sponsored by HAF, Indiaspora, HACSI, HMEC, India International School, the Maryland Milan Mandir, and featured nationally renowned Caribbean Hindu activists and advocates. Speakers highlighted key themes in the Caribbean Hindu experience, including the legacy of indentured servitude and slavery from the 19th century; the coerced conversions to Christianity in the West Indies; feelings of exclusion from many East Indians/South Asians; and the importance of Bhakti in carrying on traditions passed down for generations.

Aminta Kilawan-Narine, A New York-based lawyer and columnist, said that unlike some Indian American Hindus, most Caribbean Hindus were proud of their faith, and did not see a conflict between their religious identity and their engagement with social justice spaces. Vijah Ramjattan, the founder of the United Madrassi Association, echoed those comments, adding that the Hindu community needed to put aside territorialism over geography, sects, etc., and emphasize "unity in the community," the United Madrassi Association's motto. All of the speakers agreed that more needs to be done to integrate the experiences of Diasporic Hindus into the larger narrative of Hinduism.

More at "source".

Daily Inspiration

Posted on 2019/6/11 12:21:39 ( 723 reads )


God Siva's all-knowingness is always inside of us. We don't have to do anything for it to be there; that's the important thing. We just have to look in the right place at the right time.
-- Satguru Bodhinatha Veylanswami, publisher of Hinduism Today

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