Hindu of the Year, 1993
Satguru Sree Mata Amritanandamayi Devi conveys Her affection and prays for the welfare of all of you. She is pleased to accept the honor conferred on her by your esteemed publication as a token of your love and concern for her and her global mission. As Amma does not have a bank account in her name, the monetary award has been credited to the account of Mata Amritanandamayi Math and shall be exclusively utilized for religious and charitable activities. Thank you for your trust and support.
Mata Amritanandamayi Math,
I wish to offer my soulful gratitude to you, Sivaya Subramuniyaswami, and to all of your students for inviting me to your peace-filled ashram. My students and I shall forever treasure the blessingful love and affection which you showered upon us.
From the very moment I arrived at your sacred ashram, I felt the life-breath of our beloved Indian Hinduism growing and glowing most beautifully and most gloriously. The soul-stirring puja ceremony upon our arrival, the slokas chanted during our most delicious banquet and the walk inside your peace-flooded ashram touched the very depths of my gratitude-heart.
Proud in measureless measure you can be of your students who, through your constant blessingful guidance, are so powerfully spreading Hinduism's Universal Oneness-Message to all peoples around the globe. I was also deeply moved by your own divine nobility in calling for suggestions for your unparalleled Hinduism Today.
May our Supreme Lord Shiva proudly, eternally bless you and all your most devoted disciples in your sacred endeavors for His supreme Glory, especially on the most auspicious occasion of your Soul's Day. Happy Birthday, Gurudeva. Congratulations!
Jamaica, New York, USA
It is good marrying early as put forward by Dr. Navachandra Khanduri of Nagpur, India (Dec., 1993). Dr. Khanduri has shown that the age 15-25 for a girl and 20-30 for a boy is suitable, but physically only. We must not, however, forget the emotional and psychological maturity which is much more important. A happy, successful and healthy marriage depends, besides, on other equally important issues like traditional custom, cultural values, religion, etc.
Riviere des Anguilles, Mauritius
Norway's Tamil Center
In Norway we have a Tamil cultural center for children who were born in or who have immigrated to Norway. This center has the following activities: 1) teaching Tamil, 2) teaching religion (Hinduism and Christianity), 3) promoting drama, dance, music and sports.
Unfortunately, the center does not have good enough Hindu cultural books for children in Tamil. Does your news group have any Hindu books for children in Tamil or English language? Please send books by post to the following postal address. Thanking you in advance.
Annai Poopathy Tamil, Cultural Centre
P.O. Box 118, Blindern 9314, Oslo, NORWAY
Since the year 1989, I vowed to become a strict, ethical vegetarian-I would consume no animal products and no products containing so much as a trace of animal parts. From 1989 until 1993 I did quite well, taking comfort in the fact that I had an extensive selection of protein dishes made with cheese-until the day I picked up one of my back issues of Hinduism Today where, clearly stated, was the fact that ethical vegetarians are prohibited from consuming cheeses that are made with animal enzymes. Since all cheese products in restaurants and supermarkets are made with animal enzymes (rennet), I am now virtually with no choices when I dine out and when purchasing prepared food.
I was so grateful to Hinduism Today for alerting me to this unfortunate behavior on my part that I renewed my lapsed subscription for five years!
In appreciation for your "enlightenment" I'd like to make two suggestions that may be of interest to your readers. 1) Cheeses made with vegetable rennet may be purchased at most health food stores. Vegetable rennet itself may also be purchased for use in preparing one's own cheeses. 2) The "light butters" newly on the market contain gelatin which is, of course, an animal product.
Thank you for the knowledge imparted by this invaluable publication.
Gloria J. Betkke,
Russian Tantra Sangha
I am happy to inform you that on December 7, 1993, the Russian government officially recognized our branch in Nizhniy Novgorod.
Let me through this newspaper, in the name of all Russian Shaivites and Tantrikas, as their recognized spiritual leader, thank all those Hindus around the world who sent their contributions of books and items for worship to our Sangha, especially: Sri Jay and Gabriele Mazo from New York, who sent us the whole English Siva Purana; Mrs. Vimala Radhakrishnan and Mr. J. Sharma of Singapore; Mr. G. Govind from London; the Advaita Ashrama of Ramakrishna Mission, Calcutta; the American disciples of Gurudeva Sivaya Subramuniyaswami and many others. May the Great Divine Dancer through His Almighty Shakti bestow His Grace on all of them and give them both bhukti (all enjoyments) and mukti (salvation)!
As a young, non-profit organization, Tantra Sangha is in need of many-sided support from its Hindu brothers and sisters around the world. Those who would like to contribute any Hindu literature (in Sanskrit and English) or items for worship can contact Mr. St. Gorokhov, President, Tantra Sangha, P.O. Box 70, Moscow 103055, Russia.
Swami Sadashivacharya, Moscow, Russia
I wish to thank you all for showing Hindus and non-Hindus alike the possibilities when informed scholarship and devotional attitude are joined with modern information technology. No doubt, the professionalism evident in Hinduism Today is setting the standard for others to follow.
Every copy of Hinduism Today here circulates among educated devotees of Lord Katirkama-Murugan, and like this the information gets around. While, to be frank, I do not always agree with your editorial views and policies, I nevertheless find much to admire in your work, as do many other readers here who cannot afford to buy a subscription. I hope that, through our collective efforts, we may serve as channels for the grace descending from the Supreme Intelligence over this world.
Patrick Harrigan, Kataragama Devotees Trust
Colombo, Sri Lanka
Global 2000 Youth Report
I would like to congratulate Shuba Krishnan for her excellent expose of the [Global 2000 youth] conference [Oct. '93]. It seemed that I was there. I was extremely fascinated. Her style was unique as she brought the story to life.
The interesting thing about the story was that it was coming from a youth who was there and her opinions were candid and frank. I definitely agree with the question of caste. Here, it is a problem of inter-marriage within different linguistic groups. It's slowly changing to an acceptance from the elders.
About singing the American national anthem, she says, "showed our pride of being Americans." Yes, even in S.A. the Hindu youth would sing the new (unofficial) national anthem of the oppressed peoples of South Africa.
Wealth of Hinduism
Hindus are the wealthiest people on earth in culture, civilization, literature, arts, epics and as far as family life is concerned. What has united Hindus since time immemorial, from Kashmir to Kanya Kumari, is the culture. Reciting the following sloka and welcome our sacred rivers to come and purify the water while bathing further unites us. Gange cha Yamune chaiva Godavari Saraswati. Narmade Sindhu Kaveri jalesmin sannidhim kuru.
Hindus remember these sacred seven rivers, which mainly flow and nourish the land of Hindus where many of our holy places are situated, reminding us of our Siva, Ram and Krishna and many heroes and heoines-the list is endless. So, my young and old friends, feel great as a Hindu, feel proud of being Hindu. Remain Hindu and teach the wisdom of Hinduism so that our children remain Hindu.
Dr. Shriharsha Sharma,
Editor: We thank all our readers for all the letters you are sending. We can't answer them all, but please continue to send them in. We love to get them and we read every one.