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Hinduism Today's Latest History Music Video Published


Posted on 2020/9/26 13:50:00 ( 157 reads )

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KAUAI, HAWAII, September 18, 2020: "Indians Love Pilgrimage," just published at "source" above, is the fourteenth song in Hinduism Today's History of Hindu India Music Video series. It is a song for children intended to complement the fifth chapter of our popular History of Hindu India documentaries, "21st Century India." The documentaries and songs neatly supplement the study of India and the Hindu religion in American middle schools. This music video covers the concept of pilgrimage in Hinduism, including descriptions of Amarnath Cave pilgrimage and the 22 purifying wells of Rameshwaram Temple. Throughout Indian history, pilgrimage has been a great unifying factor across the subcontinent.



Four Vedas Organized into Spread Sheet with Translation to Hindi


Posted on 2020/9/26 11:30:00 ( 445 reads )

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INDIA, September 26, 2020 (Veda Kosh): A complete version of the four Vedas in original Sanskrit and Hindi translation has been published as a google doc at "source" above. The same is also available at http://www.VedaKosh.com. The project was begun in 2012.

At the time, Virendra Agarwal (virendra.agarwal@vedicgranth.org), the organizer behind this effort writes: "With immense content, I wish to communicate that round-1 of project: 'Digitisation of Vedas' is now completed after 8 years of team effort. Next, we embark to include translations in other languages as well. The task would not have been possible without the support and blessings of many. "

The VedaKosh site also contains many downloadable e-books.



Daily Inspiration


Posted on 2020/9/26 11:28:39 ( 107 reads )

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Why does a vijnani (enlightened person) keep an attitude of love toward God? The answer is that 'I-conciousness' persists. It disappears in the state of samadhi, no doubt, but it comes back. In the case of ordinary people the 'I' never disappears. You may cut down the ashwattha tree, but the next day sprouts shoot up.
-- Sri Ramakrishna Paramahansa (1836-1886), guru of Swami Vivekananda



Madras High Court Quashes Palani Temple's Move to Appoint Paid Contractors to Clean the Temple Instead of Volunteer Devotees


Posted on 2020/9/25 7:57:06 ( 163 reads )

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CHENNAI, INDIA, September 25, 2020 (Daily Pioneer): The Madurai Bench of the Madras High Court on Wednesday delivered a verdict with respect to the holy shrine of Lord Muruga at Palani Hills in Tamil Nadu by cancelling the tender issued by the executive officer to appoint contractors for providing house keeping services in the temple and establishments attached to the temple.

Justice G. R. Swaminathan, who heard a writ petition filed by T. R. Ramesh, president, Indic Collective, challenging the executive officer's move to float tenders for the same accepted the contention of the petitioner that devotees were authorized with the maintenance and cleaning of the the temple and its premises as per "Uzhavara Pani," an age-old voluntary service ritual. Ramesh also argued that the executive officer by entrusting the cleaning and maintenance works of the temple to outsiders on a commercial basis was infringing on the rights of the devotees. Quoting from Periya Puranam (Great Epic) authored by Sekkizhar, the 12th century saint, the justice pointed out that Shaivism speaks of four modes of worship-charya, kriya, yoga and jnana. "Charya includes physical service (Uzhavara Pani). Housekeeping contract is the commercial counterpart of Uzhavara Pani," ruled the judge.



Neasden Temple Is Built From Over 5,000 Tons of Hand-Carved Stone


Posted on 2020/9/25 7:56:53 ( 187 reads )

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UNITED KINGDOM, September 22, 2020 (Dezeen): The next Open House London documentary offers a glimpse of Neasden Temple, a place of worship in northwest London that was built using ancient Hindu texts and 26,000 pieces of stone. Filmed by Jim Stephenson, the documentary is one of nine videos that will feature on Dezeen throughout Open House London 2020 to shine a light on rarely published places in the capital. Neasden Temple, formally known as BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir, opened in 1995 as the first traditional Hindu temple, or mandir, in Europe. Today it serves as both a place of worship and a center for community outreach activities.

The temple was built with over 5,000 tons of Bulgarian limestone and Italian Carrara marble, hand-carved in India by 1,500 artisans. The 26,000 pieces of finished stone carvings were then sent to the UK to be assembled on-site by more than 3,000 volunteers, without any reinforcing iron or steel. In the video, tour guide and head monk Yogvivekdas Swami explains the story of the temple's design, which was dictated by ancient texts called the Vastu Shastra. The Vastu Shastra, which translates as "science of architecture," is a traditional Indian system of architecture that incorporates traditional Hindu beliefs and has informed the design of mandirs since 1500 BCE. "Ancient Hindu builders envision the mandir not merely as a sacred structure, but as an actual form of God," Swami concluded. "A mandir is such a place where architecture and art come together to provide a divine experience."



Bali's Coronavirus Outbreak Was So Under Control, They Welcomed Tourists. Now Cases Are Exploding.


Posted on 2020/9/25 7:56:40 ( 118 reads )

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BALI, INDONESIA, September 23, 2020 (ABC News): Bebalang village is best known to tourists as a stop on Bali's Eat, Pray, Love tour for fans of Elizabeth Gilbert's famous memoir. But now this small village at Bangli, north-east of Ubud, is the final destination for scores of victims dying from suspected Covid-19. It is a grim turn of events for an island that appeared to have coronavirus under control -- even as it raged in other parts of the archipelago. Bali now has one of the fastest-rising death rates from coronavirus in Indonesia, since the provincial government reopened the island to domestic tourism. Deaths from Covid-19 in Bali have risen five-fold since July 31 and infection rates have more than doubled. Eight of Bali's nine regencies are now classified as high-risk "red zones."

The lack of testing for coronavirus makes it impossible to know the true rate of infection, according to local epidemiologist Dr I Gusti Ngurah Kade Mahardika. Up to 4,000 tourists have arrived in Bali every day since July 31, which has fueled the spread of the virus, according to Dr Mahardika. "Bali's reopening has caused a public euphoria for local residents. They think Bali is open now so they're free to do anything and they flock to tourist destinations," he said. "All the indicators at the time showed the reopening of tourism in Bali should not have been allowed. But they did." Most tourists arriving in Bali are from neighboring Java, where coronavirus infection rates and deaths are Indonesia's highest.




Daily Inspiration


Posted on 2020/9/25 7:56:27 ( 112 reads )

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Hinduism today is a religion of today and tomorrow. It is not just a religion of history books and yesterday. Our religion gives us strength today. It is a religion which worships one Supreme God, with vast scriptures that prescribe the worship and illumine our minds with knowledge about the one Supreme God. Never forget this. Never forsake your Vedic Hindu Dharma, but fulfill it, and you will be rewarded, generation after generation after generation.
-- Satguru Sivaya Subramuniyaswami (1927-2001), founder of Hinduism Today



How Stolen Hindu Statues Were Discovered in UK


Posted on 2020/9/20 11:00:18 ( 255 reads )

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UNITED KINGDOM, September 19, 2020 (BBC): Three bronze sculptures stolen from a southern Indian temple more than 40 years ago were found in the UK and returned to Indian government officials this week. The bronze sculptures represent some of Hinduism's most revered Deities -- Lord Ram, his wife Sita and his brother Lakshman, all part of the same set of statues. They belong to a 15th Century temple built during the Vijayanagara empire, located in Anandamangalam village in Tamil Nadu state, and were stolen in 1978. Vijayanagara was once one of the most important trading centers in the world.

It's taken years of work by a group of art enthusiasts, investigations by police teams in two countries, and efforts from Indian diplomats in the UK, to help bring them back. Four years ago, a photograph of one of the sculptures was spotted on the website of the British Antique Dealers' Association by a member of India Pride Project, which works to bring stolen statues back to India. S. Vijaykumar, who co-founded the project says: "We got leads [which took us] to districts and temples with similar styles, but we could not come up with any firm matches for three years." They restarted their search, and found a crucial piece of the puzzle in the archives of the French Institute of Pondicherry in southern India. A photograph taken on 15 June 1958, showed the full set of statues in the Sri Rajagopala Swamy Temple in Anandamangalam village. Armed with evidence, the group approached the High Commission of India in the UK.

More on this discovery at "source."



Daily Inspiration


Posted on 2020/9/20 11:00:05 ( 180 reads )

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On the pathway of spiritual excellence, words that discourage and those that publicize faults of others are lethal poisons.
-- His Divine Holiness Pramukh Swami Maharaj, spiritual head of Bochasanwasi Shri Akshar Purushottam Swaminarayan Sanstha



Divinity Consultants Bring Spirituality to the Corporation Environment


Posted on 2020/9/19 12:33:47 ( 229 reads )

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UNITED STATES, August 28, 2020 (New York Times): Divinity consultants are designing sacred rituals for corporations and their spiritually depleted employees. Blending the obscure language of the sacred with the also obscure language of management consulting, the agencies provide corporations a range of spiritually inflected services. A new corporate clergy has arisen to formalize the remote work life. They go by different names: ritual consultants, sacred designers, soul-centered advertisers. They have degrees from divinity schools. Their business is borrowing from religious tradition to bring spiritual richness to corporate America.

In simpler times, divinity schools sent their graduates out to lead congregations or conduct academic research. Now there is a more office-bound calling: the spiritual consultant. Those who have chosen this path have founded agencies -- some for-profit, some not -- with similar-sounding names: Sacred Design Lab, Ritual Design Lab, Ritualist. They blend the obscure language of the sacred with the also obscure language of management consulting to provide clients with a range of spiritually inflected services, from architecture to employee training to ritual design. Their larger goal is to soften cruel capitalism, making space for the soul, and to encourage employees to ask if what they are doing is good in a higher sense. Having watched social justice get readily absorbed into corporate culture, they want to see if more American businesses are ready for faith.

For more on this interesting concept, see "source" above.



Remedying Negationism in Indian History - An On-Line Course for Fall 2020


Posted on 2020/9/19 12:33:35 ( 191 reads )

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UNITED STATES, September 18, 2020 (Indology Academy): (HPI note: Wikipedia defines "negationism" as "a distortion of the historical record.") Indology Academy is offering a one credit hour academic equivalent course titled "Rectifying Historiography: Diagnosing and Remedying Holy War Negationism in India". A brief description states: Dr. Koenraad Elst teaches a course focusing on the willful distortions in the recent and contemporary writing of Indian history, specifically pertaining to the whitewashing or denial of crimes and discriminations motivated by religion. You will get a description of the phenomenon of history denial, with some case studies; the story of how and why it started and then was promoted to state policy; how it compares technically and morally with famous cases of the denial of massacres elsewhere; and how it has come to determine India's image worldwide. The question is also pursued how these distortions and their rectification affect the coexistence between victim groups and perpetrator groups today. During the course the students-participants will get an overview of the field of Negationism Studies and its application to the intersection of Indology and History.

For any further information regarding the course, curriculum, program or administration, see "source" above or contact:
Rajiv Varma, rajiv.varma@indologyacademy.org, 1 (832) 736-5643 (Contact via Whatsapp)





Daily Inspiration


Posted on 2020/9/19 12:33:22 ( 244 reads )

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Just as a big banyan tree sprouts from a tiny seed, so the wide universe with names and forms sprouts forth from the heart.
-- Sri Ramana Maharshi (1879-1950), South Indian mystic



Yoga's "Father in the West" Still Defining Our Spirituality and Celebrity 100 Years Later


Posted on 2020/9/17 11:43:50 ( 235 reads )

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UNITED STATES, September 16, 2020 (RNS by Tara I. Burton): One hundred years ago on Sept. 19, the Indian yogi and guru Paramahansa Yogananda arrived in Boston as the Indian delegate for the Unitarian Conference of Religious Liberals. Yogananda's arrival, along with an earlier visit by another Indian teacher, Swami Vivekananda, began yoga's rise on these shores into a major industry, as well as one of the most significant examples of syncretism -- a religious and cultural mashup -- in the history of the West. Yogananda's contribution to the growing diversity of America's religious landscape in the 20th century was to adapt yoga's poses for an American audience. But his deeper influence was to pioneer a vision of wellness in which spirituality and self-help converge.

His Self-Realization Fellowship eventually offered as many as 800 temples, ashrams and retreats in 60 countries. Its blend of traditional Hindu practice with the American self-help culture resulted in the flowering of earlier movements such as transcendentalism and New Thought. Humankind's goal was "knowing in all parts of body, mind, and soul," he wrote, "that you are now in possession of the kingdom of God; that you do not have to pray that it will come to you; that God's omnipresence is your omnipresence; and that all you need to do is improve your knowing." A century on, Yogananda's project of self-realization, this vision of a unifying spiritual force, is more powerful than ever. Indeed, as more and more Americans join the ranks of religiously unaffiliated, or spiritually remixed, it might be our new civil religion.

More at "source."



Hinduism Today's Latest History Music Video Published:


Posted on 2020/9/17 11:43:37 ( 202 reads )

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KAUAI, HAWAII, September 18, 2020: "Six Key Hindu Concepts," just published at "source" above, is the thirteenth song in Hinduism Today's History of Hindu India Music Video series. It is a song for children intended to complement the fifth chapter of our popular History of Hindu India documentaries, "21st Century India." The documentaries and songs neatly supplement the study of India and the Hindu religion in American middle schools. This music video covers six key Hindu concepts that have influenced the world: religious tolerance; God's presence in everyone and everything at all times; ahimsa, nonviolence; profound reverence for the Earth; the law of karma or cause and effect; the goal of life is spiritual liberation.



Daily Inspiration


Posted on 2020/9/17 11:43:23 ( 260 reads )

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The atman in you is that which indwells all things." "Tell me, Yajnavalkya, about this atman that indwells all things." "It is that which transcends hunger and thirst, sorrow and delusion, old age and death."
-- Brihadaranyaka Upanishad III, 5A

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