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Temple Festival Parade in Schwerte, Germany
Posted on 2014/8/7 16:45:48 ( 590 reads )

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SCHWERTE, GERMANY, August 3, 2014 (Ruhr Nachrichten): The highlight of the ten day annual festival of the Sri Kanakathurga Ampal temple in Schwerte, Germany was a colorful procession on August 3rd. The Goddess, riding on a chariot, and Ganesh, riding on a palanquin, were accompanied by musicians, kavadi bearers and 600 devotees. The mayor of Schwerte, Heinrich Boeckeluehr, along with his young daughter Josefine, removed their shoes to help pull the chariot through the streets surrounding the temple on Robert-Koch Road. Plans for a building a larger temple at a new location are being made.

Accompanying video can be viewed at "source."

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Temple Vandalized in Georgia, USA
Posted on 2014/8/7 16:45:42 ( 652 reads )

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MONROE, GEORGIA, USA, August 4, 2014 (My Fox Phoenix): A Hindu temple was found vandalized over the weekend in Walton County. Members of Vishwa Bhavan Mandir in Monroe found graffiti and profanity displayed on their place of worship early Saturday morning. Spray painted messages included "ha ha" and "LOL." The vandalism included the temple's statue of the Hindu God Lord Shiva. The statue was covered with black spray paint.

Investigators tell FOX 5, less than half a mile away, the same graffiti turned up at a mobile home community and at the Kingdom Hall of Jehovah's Witness next door.

Temple members tell FOX 5's George Franco vandals struck the same spot this time last year. They damaged air conditioners. Members are wondering if the same vandals have returned.

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India's New Health Policy to Place Primacy on Traditional Medicine
Posted on 2014/8/7 16:45:35 ( 609 reads )

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INDIA, August 3, 2014 (Press Information Bureau): "For the first time since 1947, the government's health policy is going to lay primary emphasis on the Ayurveda Siddhanta. This is in tune with the times as World Health Organisation (WHO) has given considerable importance to Ayurveda in its activities related to traditional medicine," Union Minister for Health & Family Welfare, Dr. Harsh Vardhan said at Haridwar, today.

Speaking to reporters after laying the foundation stone of a "Global museum of Ayurveda and Herbal Medicine" at Yoga Guru Baba Ramdev's Patanjali Yoga Pitha, Dr. Harsh Vardhan said the government would work towards strengthening Ayurveda's global acceptance as evidence-based medicine.

"Now every AIIMS (All India Institute of Medical Science) centre will have an indigenous medicine department of which Ayurveda will be a major component. AIIMS Rishikesh will take the lead in this as steps are underway to have a 100-bed AYUSH Hospital and land for medicinal herb cultivation facility for standardised production of medicines," the Health Minister said.

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Daily Inspiration
Posted on 2014/8/7 16:45:28 ( 473 reads )

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The bonds of dharma do not bind but promise sweet liberation.
-- His Divine Holiness Pramukh Swami Maharaj, spiritual head of BAPS Swaminarayan Sanstha

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Vietnam's New Tourism Attraction
Posted on 2014/8/6 18:30:00 ( 716 reads )

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VIETNAM, December 27, 2014 (Vietnam Tourism): After 10 years of implementation with the help of UNESCO, University of Polytechnic of Milan (Italy) and the Vietnam Ministry of Culture, Tourism and Sports, the Safeguarding My Son World Heritage Site Project was completed successfully in December 2013.

This US$1.6 million project, funded by the Italian Government, concentrated in restoration, conservation and protection of Hindu Cham monuments of 4th to 13th century My Son Sanctuary Site, including the G tower group, by using bricks produced in Quang Nam province which met the requirements of structure, color and baking method of the ancient Cham people for building and protecting their towers throughout Viet Nam in past centuries. Workshops were also conducted for the staff responsible for the site in conservation skill, maintenance and operation.

UNESCO representative Katherine Muller Marin said the My Son site promotes sustainable tourism development, museum space, capacity building and documentation of lessons learned for production of guidelines for archaeological studies and conservation of Cham monument complexes.

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Balaji Temple Deposits Two Tons of Gold with Government Bank
Posted on 2014/8/6 18:24:38 ( 598 reads )

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TIRUPATI, INDIA, August 2, 2014 (The Economic Times): A whopping 4,000 lbs. of gold offerings made by devotees of Lord Venkateswara at the famous hill shrine at Tirumala was today deposited with the State Bank of India, taking the total deposits made by it so far with various banks to more than 11,000 lbs.

Executive officer of the Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams (TTD), which manages the cash-rich temple, M. G. Gopal handed over the gold to State Bank of India (SBI) Chairperson Arundhati Bhattacharya at the TTD Headquarters here, in the first deposit of the precious metal by the temple in the last two years.

The gold offered by devotees in the hill temple hundi was deposited under SBI Gold Scheme for a period of five years at the rate of interest of one per cent, which effectively would mean addition of 26.5 lbs. of gold per year, Gopal told reporters.

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India's PM Gifts Nepal's 2,500 Kilos of Sandalwood
Posted on 2014/8/6 18:24:18 ( 551 reads )

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KATMANDU, NEPAL, August 4, 2014 (Hindustan Times): On Monday morning, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who is on a two-day visit to the Himalayan nation, reached Pashupatinath Temple, the most sacred Lord Shiva shrine in Nepal, and conducted special prayers.

"He took part in a special puja which was conducted by Ganesh Bhatta, the Indian head priest of the temple, and lasted for 35 minutes," said Govinda Tandon, member secretary of Pashupati Area Development Trust. The prime minister made an offering of 2,500 kilos of sandalwood. Nearly 1/2 kilo of sandalwood paste is used daily on the Shiva jLinga at the temple. Considering the steep price of the commodity, temple authorities had requested India to provide the sandalwood. Worth about US$250,000, the quantity should last 12-15 years.

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Daily Inspiration
Posted on 2014/8/6 18:24:11 ( 584 reads )

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About many things in Hinduism I had once been inclined to believe that there was much of dream in it, much that was delusion and maya. But now day after day I realized in the mind, I realized in the heart, I realized in the body the truths of the Hindu religion. They became living experiences to me, and things were opened to me which no material science could explain.
-- Sri Aurobindo (1879-1950)

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Eco-Friendly Ganesha Statues to be Cheaper this Year
Posted on 2014/8/1 17:14:44 ( 962 reads )

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MUMBAI, INDIA, July 27, 2014 (dna India): Even as only one month remains for Ganesh Chaturthi, the statue sculptors and manufacturers in the city are already applying the finishing touches to the Ganesha statues. In a bid to ensure an eco-friendly festival, the Maharashtra Pollution Control Board (MPCB) have tied up with the Ganesh statue makers to ensure that more eco-friendly statues flood the market at reasonable rates.

While it is common knowledge that Plaster of Paris (PoP) statues are cheaper than clay statues, The manufacturers are making efforts to ensure that price difference between them idols made can be slashed from a comparative 50 per cent to 25 - 30 per cent this year.

The MPCB will also start with awareness and promotion programs to increase use of clay statues. "There will be advertisements in television channels and local newspapers, workshops for citizens and training for clay statue makers as well to help them understand how to promote the eco friendly statues. All this will start in early August," said J. S. Salunkhe, sub regional officer, MPCB.

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Bali: Nyelung, an Expression of Gratitude
Posted on 2014/8/1 17:14:38 ( 626 reads )

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BALI, INDONESIA, July 22, 2014 (Bali Daily): The people of Buahan, a village in Payangan, Gianyar, welcomed this month with a joyful spirit. The harvest was quite good and the time had come for them to organize Nyelung, a religious festival held once a decade. The peak of the festival fell on July 15, during which nearly all the villagers marched to the Pucak Pausan Temple on the northern side of the village.

It is said that centuries ago the village was nearly destroyed by a long drought that triggered widespread famine. Furthermore, the remaining crops were totally consumed by merciless pests. "Members of the local subak [traditional farming organization] then conducted a 6 mile pilgrimage to the temple and brought back holy water from it. They sprinkled the holy water onto the rice fields and plantations. Gradually, things got better, the plants thrived and the villagers were healthy," temple priest Jero Mangku Wayan Mahardika said.

To express their gratitude to the Deities at Pucak Pausan Temple, the villagers constructed a large wooden box, which they filled with various agricultural produce. The box was beautifully decorated and escorted in fanfare during a five hour-long march to the temple.

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Val-Morin Tamil Kavadi Procession
Posted on 2014/8/1 17:14:32 ( 670 reads )

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QUEBEC, CANADA, July 30, 2014 (Laurentides Express): Every year the celebration of Kavadi in Val-Morin attracts hundreds of onlookers who watch, with cameras in hand, the procession of devotees of the Tamil community in the streets of the municipality.

Several Hindu devotees are suspended horizontally by iron hooks piercing the skin of their back, triceps and hamstrings. "They fast for several days before the event", explained a young Tamil woman who makes her home near Sainte-Agathe-des-Monts. "They practice total abstinence - including their sex lives - to purify the soul. On Kavadi day, they go into a trance, possessed by the Deity to the point where they do not feel the hooks or needles that pass through their skin."

This celebration is a Hindu festival usually celebrated in January or February in the tropical climate of the southwest Indian Ocean. However, the Tamil diaspora in North America has chosen to celebrate this colorful festival during the hot season, in July, in Val-Morin, rather than in the sub-zero weather of January.

Colorful photos at 'source.'

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Madrid's Indian Film and Dance Festival
Posted on 2014/8/1 17:14:26 ( 578 reads )

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MADRID, SPAIN, June 7, 2014 (El Mundo): The seventh annual BollyMadrid Festival is being held on the streets and plazas of the Spanish capital for three days in June. The sponsor of the event, the government of Madrid's central Lavapies district, is anticipating that 30,000 people will come to participate in the festival. The festival includes a morning fair selling Indian fashion and handicrafts and holding workshops, such as rangoli drawing, for the children. There's an Indian food plaza with 25 booths staffed by the district's Indian restaurants. Over three days there will be 50 performances choreographed for 100 dancers. And in the evening after sunset, the latest films from Mumbai are being shown on the big screen over the stage.

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BBC Documentary: The Story of the Swastika
Posted on 2014/8/1 17:14:12 ( 1519 reads )

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ocf8Nlq5Xiw

LONDON, ENGLAND, May 13, 2014 (BBC): At last, the BBC has produced an excellent video explaining how Hitler hijacked the swastika--a symbol of auspiciousness used by ancient cultures worldwide and held sacred by Hindus--and distorted its meaning so that the Western world now regards it with fear and loathing, as a symbol of hatred and genocide. Footage of Nazi Germany is contrasted with the swastika's uses and significance in Hindu culture and religious observances. Although the narrator doubts we can ever effect a complete recovery (even saying that Hitler "changed the perception of the swastika in the West forever"), the video ends on a very positive note, hypothesizing the day when each child's early exposure to the swastika will be in terms of its traditional, benevolent uses and meanings--and the later knowledge of Hitler's misuse of it will be met with the same sense of sock, horror and outrage that Hindus themselves feel. "And if we can get to that point, then Hitler will have finally been defeated."


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Daily Inspiration
Posted on 2014/8/1 17:14:05 ( 470 reads )

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Love is seeing and feeling life everywhere. When your heart is full of love, you sense life pulsating through all creation.
-- Mata Amritanandamayi Ma, Kerala-based hugging saint

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South Africa Temple Celebrates Akhand Hanuman Chalisa
Posted on 2014/7/31 17:38:45 ( 580 reads )

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SOUTH AFRICA, July 29, 2014 (Indian Times): The Isipingo Dharam Mandir celebrated its 2nd Akhand Hanuman Chalisa on 25th May 2014 at the temple in Isipingo. The President of the Temple Society, Neelien Ramchand explain that the event included the recitation of the Hanuman Chalisa 108 times. Various satsang groups from the Durban area were programmed to perform the Hanuman Chalisa during this marathon recital. The recitation started at 6 am and ended at 6 pm.

The day's proceedings commenced with prayer at 4-30 am. Neelien said that the Akhand Hanuman Chalisa was a thanksgiving prayer to the Supreme Being in the form of Lord Hanuman to acknowledge our existence and give thanks to what we have in this world. Pundith Suman Singh, the officiating priest, said, "We are all servants of the Lord and our existence is by the grace of the Lord".

The origins of the temple started in 1963 when the community of Malakazi got together to start this organisation. It had very humble beginnings and has grown over the years. It currently has about 120 members of the temple society. However, during the major festivals and celebrations, hundreds of people from far and wide gather at the temple to offer prayers and pay homage to the Lord.

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