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NY Temple Wins Place in Hall of Fame

Posted on 2000/11/6 0:48:02 ( 2186 reads )


FLUSHING, NEW YORK: The temple to Lord Ganesha here in Flushing, New York, is entering the "People's Hall of Fame." According to a report in News India, City Lore, who sponsor the hall of fame, says that with 18,000 members of many different nationalities, the ornate temple on Bowne Street, Flushing, is not only the center of New York's Hindu community, but a cultural center that helps to beautify the city with a wide array of cultural and religious arts. The temple was one of the first Hindu temples built in America, and has been very successful since its founding in 1977.

British Airways Stops Using Buddha Images

Posted on 2000/11/6 0:47:02 ( 2284 reads )

Source: The Hindu, Nov 3rd, 2000

COLOMBO, SRI LANKA: British Airways has stopped using images of Buddha to promote its business class following protests from Sri Lankan travellers, airline officials said here today. Sri Lankan expatriates had launched a campaign on the internet to call for a boycott of BA for using Buddha images in advertisements. The airlines has now withdrawn the images.

Government Minister Wants to Tap Religious Tourism in India

Posted on 2000/11/6 0:46:02 ( 2981 reads )

Source: Hinduism Today

DELHI, INDIA: Developing the potential of pilgrim and cultural tourism in India and taking steps for reconstruction of culturally significant cities can contribute as much as Rs 850,000 crores (US$185 billion) to India's gross domestic product and create 33 million jobs by 2020 says Jagmohan, India's minister of urban development and poverty alleviation minister. He spoke today at the inauguration of Annual Travel and Tourism Summit organized by the Associated Chamber of commerce and Industry, on Tourism: Catalyst for Employment and Economic Growth. To give a boost to ethnic tourism, the urban development ministry has begun implementing special schemes to develop culturally significant towns and cities like Varanasi, Madurai and Puri by reconstructing, repairing and sprucing up historical monuments and civic amenities without burdening the public exchequer. He said that a comprehensive blue print for redevelopment of Varanasi city has been drawn up and its implementation initiated. Generally speaking, tourist travel within India is already religious travel, with most destinations being holy sites.

Bihar State Celebrates "Chhath Puja"

Posted on 2000/11/6 0:45:02 ( 2921 reads )

Source: The Hindu, November 3

PATNA, BIHAR, INDIA: Hundreds of thousands of Hindus including the Chief Minister of Bihar, Mrs. Rabri Devi, offered worship to the Sun throughout Bihar yesterday. Devotees took a holy bath in the Ganga, Kosi or Gandak rivers and offered prayers and water to the setting Sun.

Ballon Flights Expected to be Hit of Pushkar Fair

Posted on 2000/11/6 0:44:02 ( 2673 reads )

Source: Source: The Hindu Business Line

RAJASTHAN, INDIA: The famed Pushkar Fair in Ajmer district of Rajashtan begins today, complete with a hot air ballon ready to take one and all across the large fair grounds. The event is a pilgrimage/festival combined with an annual six-day market for camels and cattle. The balloon flight, which will allow a complete view of the Pushkar area, is expected to be very popular. The Rajasthan Tourism Development corporation chairman, Mr. Rajiv Arora, said here that the corporation was setting up a tourist village comprising 32 huts, 250 swiss tents, 75 ordinary tents and two dormitories along with the coffee shops. It will have a dining hall, a bank, post office, phone facilities and handicraft market , he said. There would be a camel safari too, as well as several cultural programs.

Legend of Bagger Vance movie, based on Bhagavad Gita, opens in theatres to mixed reviews

Posted on 2000/11/5 0:49:02 ( 3450 reads )


USA: Robert Redford's latest movie, "The Legend of Bagger Vance," which opened in 2,000 theaters across America this weekend, is based upon the book of the same name. The book is an adaptation of the "Bhagavad Gita" into the story of a 1920's game of golf. Most viewers won't make the connection, and most professional reviewers seem clueless, too, though a few sensed a "Zen" or "Hindu" flavor to the philosophy. For example, Roger Ebert called it the "first Zen movie about golf." The movie's plot centers around a has-been golfer, "Rannulph Junuh" (read "R. Junnuh," as in "Arjuna"), played by Matt Damon, who is advised by a caddy, Bagger Vance (read "Bhagavan," i.e. Lord Krishna), played by Will Smith. Ebert likes the movie, but CNN reviewer Paul Tatara said, "you've certainly seen worse movies, but Redford really blew an opportunity here." Steven Rosen has written a book, "Gita on the Green: The Mystical Tradition Behind Bagger Vance," detailing the novel's derivation from the Bhagavad Gita. It can be advance ordered at Amazon.com.

UK forum calls for state funding for religious organizations to tackle social problems

Posted on 2000/11/5 0:48:02 ( 2770 reads )


LONDON, ENGLAND: In a UK meeting, Conservatives said they would give churches and other faith communities new opportunities to establish their own full-time schools to teach their religious values along with providing a general education. Already the UK has a state-funded Sikh school. Conservative leader William Hague said, "Close to their communities and offering role models that pupils can identify with, they would be one sure way to guarantee diversity, increase standards and give children the values they need."

Trinidad's Hindu PM likely to return to office

Posted on 2000/11/5 0:47:02 ( 2660 reads )

Source: Hinduism Today: Anil Mahabir, Trinidad Correspondent

PORT LOUIS, TRINIDAD: Trinidadians will go to the polls to elect a new government on Monday, December 11, 2000. The two major parties in the race are: the UNC, widely touted as "the Indian/Hindu party" which is led by Basdeo Panday and the PNM, which is seen as the "African/Christian party" led by Patrick Manning. The country is presently run by a Hindu Prime minister in Basdeo Panday. All the recent polls seem to suggest that the incumbent government (the UNC) will return to office, however, it is premature to come to a conclusion. The PNM has vowed to re-visit all the legislation passed "by the Hindu Prime Minister," especially the "blasphemous libel law" which makes it illegal for anyone to publicly criticize any of the world's religions. The PNM only wants it to protect the "Christian faith against the pagans"--as did the original English Common Law version in force up to this year. Things are peaceful in a country which has never seen a single act of election violence even when, in 1995, the country got its first Hindu Prime Minister.

South Africa Hindus act against AIDS

Posted on 2000/11/5 0:46:02 ( 2554 reads )


JOHANNESBURG, SOUTH AFRICA: Yogapragasan Naidoo has organized an AIDS awareness concert with the help of religious, cultural and nongovernment organizations in South Africa. A float procession through Lenasia will be followed by a concert of bhajan and kirtan groups (religious singers) and speakers from various AIDS organizations. "The idea," explained Naidoo, "is part of the schools initiative run by the South Africa National AIDS Council, which requires schools to do something about AIDS education."

Announcement: Yoga conference, Tampa, Florida, December 15 to 19, 2000

Posted on 2000/11/5 0:45:02 ( 2085 reads )


"Yoga for Positive Health", 10th International Conference, will be held in Tampa, Florida in December. The conference is co-sponsored by sVYASA and The Center for Positive Health at the University of South Florida, College of Public Health. The main conference will focus on "Yoga and Consciousness" and "Applications of Yoga for Health and Diseases" with many nationally and internationally known experts.

Temple Wins Local Community Award

Posted on 2000/11/4 0:49:02 ( 2870 reads )


The Hindu Temple Society of North America, which operates the Ganesha Temple in Flushing New York, has been awarded a place in the "People's Hall of Fame" for providing excellent cultural example to the community.

Hindu Festivals Gear Up in India

Posted on 2000/11/1 0:49:02 ( 2500 reads )

Source: The Tribune, November 1, 2000

PATNA, INDIA: The four day festival of Chatth kicks off Wednesday in Bihar State, India. Millions of Hindus are expected to congregate along different rivers and lakes in the state for the do-it-yourself offerings which require no priests. Similar religious festivals involving millions of Hindus--a scale never seen in the West--will occur all over India through the fall, culminating in the once-in-twelve-year Kumbha Mela at Allahabad in January to March. The Mela will be the largest gathering of human beings in one place in history, likely numbering more than 45 million Hindus.

India Government Subsidies Hindu Pilgrims

Posted on 2000/11/1 0:48:02 ( 2644 reads )

Source: Press Trust of India

DELHI, INDIA: Indian Railways announced a special fare for pilgrims from Delhi to the Vaishno Devi Shrine near Jammu, on the border with Kashmir, 500 miles from Delhi. This famed shrine to the Goddess attracts hundreds of thousands of pilgrims every year. Now they can travel by train and bus from Delhi, stay in hotels, have vegetarian meals for just $65/person for a three-day trip.

India Government Subsidies Muslim Pilgrims

Posted on 2000/11/1 0:47:02 ( 2452 reads )

Source: Hindustan Times, October 30

DELHI, INDIA: 72,000 Muslims from India will make the pilgrimage to Mecca this year financed by the Indian government at US$435 each to cover airfare and accommodations to Saudi Arabia. The subsidy, which totals US$32 million, allows poorer Muslims to make the requiste once-in-a-lifetime pilgrimage. The subsidy was increased over last year due to increase in aviation fuel costs.

Norway Envoy Meets Sri Lanka Rebel Leader

Posted on 2000/11/1 0:46:02 ( 3149 reads )


COLOMBO, SRI LANKA: In a remarkable development in the long Sri Lanka civil war, Norwegian special envoy Eric Solheim met the leader of the Tamil Tigers, Velupillai Prabhakaran, in the jungles of Wannai, northern Sri Lanka. Norway has long sought to help mediate the conflict, but during the last state elections it appeared their help was no longer welcome. Now both the government and the rebels are evaluating the Norwegian contribution.

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