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Hindraf seeks Urgent Meeting with Chief Minister on Demolition of 100 Temples in Malaysia
Posted on 2015/2/27 18:12:14 ( 1274 reads )

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KUALA LUMPUR MALAYSIA , February 24, 2015 (Freemalaysia Today): Hindraf Makkal Sakthi is seeking an urgent meeting with Selangor Menteri Besar Azmin Ali on a reported 100 Hindu temples in the state which have purportedly been earmarked for demolition.The NGO maintains all these temples in Selangor were legally built. The meeting follows a public admission by Selangor Exco V. Ganapathi Rao that some 100 Hindu temples, older than the recently demolished 60-year-old Sri Kottai Munisvarar Nageswary Temple, would be demolished by the state government. He did not state the reasons for the pending demolitions.

"Rao's statement reminds us of the era of MIC and BN where they kept giving lame excuses for their inefficiency in tackling matters of public interest and concern," said Hindraf vice-president Tamil Selvam. "He's the lone Indian representative in the Exco and clearly outnumbered by the others." His helplessness, pointed out Tamil Selvam, stems from the fact he has not been given the mandate to handle the issue. "The temples, he added, originated from plantations which were subsequently acquired by the government or sold to private developers. "Just because the plantations where the temples sit have been acquired by the government and developers, it does not mean that they can go on a demolition spree."

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Why, to Many Critics, Mother Teresa is Still no Saint
Posted on 2015/2/27 18:12:08 ( 1279 reads )

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INDIA, February 26, 2015 (by Adam Taylor, Washington Post): Mother Teresa, the Roman Catholic missionary who became an international icon for her charitable work, has been dropped into modern India's religious debate after the head of the Hindu nationalist group Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) criticized the intentions behind her work. "It's good to work for a cause with selfless intentions. But Mother Teresa's work had ulterior motive, which was to convert the person who was being served to Christianity," RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat said at the opening of an orphanage in Rajasthan state on Monday, the Times of India reports. "In the name of service, religious conversions were made. This was followed by other institutes, too." Bhagwat's comments caused a storm among opposition politicians, angered by the implication that a woman who won a Nobel Peace Prize for her work in India would have had ulterior motives.

This controversy about Mother Teresa, who died in 1997, is far from her first. Her saintly reputation was gained for aiding Calcutta's poorest of the poor, yet it was undercut by persistent allegations of misuse of funds, poor medical treatments and religious evangelicalism in the institutions she founded. Many who support Mother Teresa dispute these accounts, of course, but they exist and are frequently debated. In fact, when compared to the criticism that already exists about Mother Teresa and the Missionaries of Charity, Bhagwat's words look relatively meek: Multiple accounts say that Mother Teresa's nuns would baptize the dying and she had a reputation for proselytizing.

A good video accompanies this article.

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New Jersey Schools to Close for Diwali
Posted on 2015/2/27 18:12:02 ( 1214 reads )

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GLEN ROCK, NEW JERSEY , February 24, 2015 (by Chris Harris, NorthJersey.com): Schools in the borough will be closed on Nov. 11, since the Board of Education voted to add Diwali, a Hindu holy day, to the district's calendar. District officials claim Glen Rock, which has a burgeoning Indian community, is the first district in Bergen County to formally recognize Diwali with an instruction-free day.

Rona McNabola, the board's president, said she hopes Monday's vote "sends a message to other communities" with growing Indian populations to at least consider recognizing Diwali with a day off. The school board's move Monday night followed a formal request from a group of parents late last year that schools be closed on Diwali to make it easier for Hindu families to observe the holiday. Sanjiv Ohri, the school board's vice president, said that Glen Rock's "Indian community is very happy that the school has recognized the change and addressed the need of a growing community."


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Daily Inspiration
Posted on 2015/2/27 18:11:55 ( 1097 reads )

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Parents must teach children to appreciate those who are different, those who believe differently; teach them the openness that they need to live in a pluralistic world where others have their unique ways, their life and culture; teach them the value of human diversity and the narrow-mindedness of a provincial outlook; give them the tools to live in a world of differences without feeling threatened, without forcing their ways or their will on others; teach them that it never helps to hurt another of our brothers or sisters.
-- Satguru Sivaya Subramuniyaswami (1927-2001), founder of Hinduism Today

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Indians Knew Small Pox Inoculation Before Jenner invented Vaccine
Posted on 2015/2/23 15:54:11 ( 1519 reads )

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NEW DELHI, INDIA, February 23, 2015 (NDTV): Union Science and Technology Minister Harsh Vardhan today claimed that modern medicine originated in India and that Indians had practiced inoculation against smallpox even before the vaccine for the disease was invented by Edward Jenner. Dr Vardhan, who is himself an ENT surgeon, said that most of what is taken to be modern medicine had come back to India through the "American route" after being first translated into Arabic and Persian in 9th century ce and, from that, into the European languages in the 17th century.

"When I studied the history of Ayurveda or what you can call Hindu medicine... I found that in the ninth century, the Caliph of Baghdad got all our knowledge of Ayurveda translated into the Arabic and Persian languages."The same knowledge was again translated into the European languages in the 17th century and all that great knowledge has come back to us and it's explained to us as modern medicine that has come through the route of the Americas."But the origin of all this knowledge, if you go into the depth of this, was basically in India," Dr Vardhan said at an international conference on the Vedas in New Delhi.

"All of us know that Edward Jenner was the man who invented the vaccination for smallpox, but our Vedas will tell that the Hindus and Mohammedans of this country had done smallpox inoculations hundreds of years before the vaccine was invented. So, it's not about boasting, but the facts will all remain facts," he said

The minister further said that even before the Hippocratic oath begun to be administered to medical professionals, Sushruta and Ashwini, the surgeons of ancient India, told people to practise the same."Sushruta and all great surgeons taught to the whole world plastic surgery of nose. I have read in my own literature that surgical instruments were so precise, they split the hair into two," the minister said.

For further reading: http://www.infinityfoundation.com/man ... _dy/t_dy_Q14_frameset.htm

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Mummified Monk Found Inside Ancient Buddha Statue
Posted on 2015/2/23 15:52:07 ( 1403 reads )

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NETHERLANDS, February 23, 2015 (Discovery): Researchers at the Drents Museum in the Netherlands made a shocking discovery when they imaged an ancient Chinese statue and found a nearly 1,000-year-old mummy inside. Sitting in the lotus position, the mummy fits within the statue perfectly.

"On the outside, it looks like a large statue of Buddha," the museum said in a release. "Scan research has shown that on the inside, it is the mummy of a Buddhist monk who lived around the year 1100." The human skeleton is believed to belong to Buddhist master Liu Quan, a member of the Chinese Meditation School. The museum speculates Liu Quan may have "self-mummified" in order to become a "living Buddha."

Practiced mainly in Japan, self-mummification was a grueling process that required a monk to follow a strict 1,000-day diet of nuts and seeds in order to strip the body of fat. A diet of bark and roots would follow for another 1,000 days. At the end of this period, the monk began drinking a poisonous tea made from the sap of the Japanese varnish tree. The tea caused a rapid loss of bodily fluids, possibly making the body too poisonous to be eaten by bacteria and insects.

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Daily Inspiration
Posted on 2015/2/23 15:52:00 ( 1307 reads )

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The syllable gu means shadows. The syllable ru, he who disperses them. Because of the power to disperse darkness, the guru is thus named.
-- Advayataraka Upanishad

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Australian Town Council Investigates Hindu Temple Operating Out of Home
Posted on 2015/2/22 18:07:18 ( 1355 reads )

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MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA, February 17, 2015 (Herald Sun): An investigation has been launched into whether a Craigieburn house is being used as a Hindu temple. But the home's owner denied the claims when approached by Hume Leader, despite running a Facebook page promoting prayer sessions and taking donations.

Craigieburn Mata Mandir is listed on Facebook as a Hindu temple in Hanson Rd. operating from 8am-8pm. It has almost 500 likes and posts photos, reviews and event details. A post on November 23 said a new temple was being constructed at the address with a "grand opening" advertised for January 17. There have also been posts encouraging donations with bank account details listed.

After being contacted by Hume Leader, all these posts were removed. City sustainability director Kelvin Walsh said Hume Council was investigating. According to the council, having a place of worship at a residential property could be within the owner's rights. While residential zones are primarily for housing, they can, in some instances, allow for educational, religious, recreational, community and other uses.

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Tulsi Gabbard to Marry in April in Vedic ceremony
Posted on 2015/2/22 18:07:12 ( 1569 reads )

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WASHINGTON, USA, February 20, 2015 (Indian Express): Tulsi Gabbard, the first ever Hindu lawmaker in the US Congress, will marry cinematographer Abraham Williams in April in a Vedic ceremony, a media report has said. The marriage will take place in Hawaii. The second term Democratic Congresswoman from Hawaii, Gabbard, 33, announced her engagement about a month ago. She disclosed the identity of her fiancee in an interview to the local Honolulu Star Advertiser published this week. Gabbard said she would keep her last name after the marriage, which she wants to keep as a low key affair.

Williams is a freelance cinematographer who has made some short films and worked on commercial and political advertising campaigns, the daily reported. The daily said this time she is planning a Vedic wedding ceremony in keeping with the couple's Hindu faith. "For us it's about having a shared sense of spiritual values and what we hold important. We try to live our lives in service to others and God in a way that has a positive impact on others around us. It was something I learned from a young age," Gabbard said.

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Daily Inspiration
Posted on 2015/2/22 18:07:06 ( 1244 reads )

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Silence is the first door to spiritual eminence.
-- Adi Sankara (788-820), in his Vivekachudamani, 368

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New Government Temple Trust Boards to be set up in Telangana
Posted on 2015/2/21 18:01:05 ( 1422 reads )

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HYDERABAD, February 20 2015 (Deccan Chronicle): HPI Note: It is significant that the new state of Telangana (separated off from Andhra Pradesh in 2014) is choosing to have the government continue to administrate Hindu temples, rather than handing them over to Hindus to manage in the same way Christians and Muslims manage their churches and mosques with no government control.

The Telangana government is gearing up to set up Trust Boards for major temples in the state. Trust boards, comprising nine or more members for various temples, are pending as Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao is busy with development and welfare schemes. Sources said the CM has now decided to constitute the trust boards. Another reason for the delay is a court case, it is learnt.

Mr Rao has given a boost to temples in Telangana, especially the Sri Laxminarasimha Swamy temple in Yadagirigutta in Nalgonda district.Mr Rao had announced that he would turn Yadagirigutta into another Vatican city. In view of this, the Chief Minister has decided to constitute a separate Yadagirigutta Development Authority to be headed by him. He has roped in experts from various fields, including G. Kishan Rao. Besides earmarking US$161,000 or more funds to major temples for festivals, the CM has also instructed officials to ensure basic amenities to pilgrims at all temples. Temples are being spruced up for the ensuing Godavari Pushkaralu.

Andhra Pradesh has cash-rich temples, but there are not many such temples in Telangana.

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Hindu Pilgrims Arrive at Katas Raj, Pakistan
Posted on 2015/2/21 18:00:59 ( 1381 reads )

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CHAKWAL, PAKISTAN, February 18, 2015 (by Nabeel Anwar Dakku, Dawm.com): Preparations are being made at the Katas Raj Temple Complex to receive pilgrims from India, coming to celebrate the Maha Shivaratri, one of the major religious festivals in Hinduism. "About 60 pilgrims are arriving from India and will reach Katas Raj on Monday (February 16)," District Coordination Officer (DCO) Asif Bilal Lodhi told Dawn.

He said pilgrims would be celebrating Shivrati for three days and would leave Katas Raj on February 18. "We have made foolproof security arrangements for the pilgrims," he added. A high-level meeting, chaired by Siddquul Farooq, chairman of Evacuee Trust Property Board, was held on February 10 to discuss arrangements for receiving pilgrims. District Police Officer Dr Moeen Masood told the participants that foolproof arrangements for the security of pilgrims have been made.

"A mega construction project would be launched at Katas Raj soon. A hostel costing over US$983,000 will be constructed for pilgrims," the DCO told Dawn.

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Meditation Blooms as People Seek a Way to Slow Down
Posted on 2015/2/21 18:00:51 ( 1262 reads )

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LOS ANGELES, USA, February 18, 2015 (The LA Times): One hundred fifty people sat in the big meeting room, hands on laps, eyes closed, feet flat on the floor."Bring your attention to this moment," Janice Marturano instructed. "Be open to sensations of warmth or coolness, sensations of fullness from breakfast, or perhaps hunger." Minutes later, the meditation ended with the traditional strikes of little hand cymbals. Buddhists? Old hippies? New Agers? No, the room was full of hospital executives and managers in lab coats and scrubs, jeans and sports coats at Long Beach Memorial Medical Center. And the teacher was Marturano, once a top executive at General Mills.

The founder of the Institute for Mindful Leadership, Marturano is a sign that meditation has snaked its way into every sector of our lives. Meditation, primarily a 2,500-year-old form called mindfulness meditation that emphasizes paying attention to the present moment, has gone viral.

Meditation has moved from its Asian, monastic roots to become a practice requiring no particular dogma on a path not necessarily toward nirvana but toward a more mindful everyday life. Some serious advocates worry it's becoming another feel-good commodity. The practice of mindfulness meditation has become more widespread at a time when the fastest-growing group demographic is made up of people who say they are unaffiliated with a particular denomination, said Varun Soni, the dean of religious life at USC, which has launched a university-wide effort toward mindfulness.

For more, go to source

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Daily Inspiration
Posted on 2015/2/21 18:00:45 ( 1057 reads )

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Attach yourself to Him who is free from all attachments. Bind yourself to that bond so all other bonds may be broken.
-- Tirukkural 350

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Trinidad Hindus Observe Shivratri amid Carnival Celebration
Posted on 2015/2/20 17:45:02 ( 1189 reads )

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PORT OF SPAIN, TRINIDAD, February 20, 2015 (By Paras Ramoutar for HPI): Away from fetes, dancing and merrymaking as Trinidad and Tobago, the oil-rich Caribbean republic observes its annual carnival, devout Hindus visited temples and other public places to observe the annual Shivratri on Carnival Tuesday, February 17.

Thousands of Hindu women dressed in saris and men in kurtas spent the night in over 400 temples across the land. For the past three weeks, Hindus maintained strict adherence and did not eat meat or indulged in alcoholic drinks in preparation for Shivratri. Scores of temples hosted special Lord Shiva Yagnas, all of which were carried live on several radio stations. Ramesh Tiwari, spiritual leader of the Edinburgh Hindu temple in Chaguanas town said, "The observance of Shivratri gives mankind another chance to reconnect with Lord Shiva. The world continues to travel down the pathway of spiritual, oral and ethical decline."

The observance of Shivratri was brought by the indentured Indian laborers who came from Uttar Pradesh and Bihar between 1845 and 1917. Shivratri is one of several sacred Hindu observances which were brought here by their forefathers. Out of a population of 1.3 million people, some 25 percent people are devout Hindus.

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