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Daily Inspiration

Posted on 2016/12/4 18:48:56 ( 182 reads )


Hinduism is ultimately about experiencing things yourself. Understanding another person's wisdom does not make one wise.
-- Satguru Bodhinatha Veylanswami, publisher of Hinduism Today

Plea to Implement Supreme Court Order on Daily Puja Fund in Temples

Posted on 2016/12/3 19:27:21 ( 457 reads )


HYDERABAD, INDIA, December 1, 2016 (The Hindu): The Temple Protection Movement has appealed to Prime Minister Narendra Modi to implement the recommendation of the Supreme Court for creation of a daily puja fund scheme for every temple. Movement convener M.V. Soundarrajan, in a statement, said it will be in tune with the demonetization exercise initiated by the prime Minister as a first step in the fight against parallel black economy and towards a less cash society and eventually to a cashless society.

He urged the Prime Minister to take suitable steps to implement the Supreme Court order to encourage temples to slowly migrate to a cashless model in the long term and the devotees to donate through the mobile phones too. The Supreme Court-appointed committee visited Chilkur Balaji temple in 1996 and made a recommendation to follow the Chilkur Bajaji temple model to deposit the amounts given by the devotees in the interest-yielding fixed deposits on permanent basis in the name of the Deity. That amount was used to pay remuneration to a priest though there is no remarkable income to the temple.

Dr. Soundarrajan said the Daily Puja fund scheme of Chilkur Balaji temple was a success with over US$1.5 million collected and the temple transitioned to complete cashless model with no cash donations accepted. Thus, the temple does not provide any avenue to black money holders to deposit cash in hundis with the mistaken premise that it would rid them of the sin of hoarding such money if a percentage was contributed to Lord's hundi, he said.

Daily Inspiration

Posted on 2016/12/3 19:27:10 ( 233 reads )


A happy man is he who desires nothing, claims nothing, expects nothing and is free from hatred and fear.
-- Dada Vaswani, leader of the Sadhu Vaswani Mission

JC Bose: Rigorous Scientist and Profound Thinker in the Indic Tradition

Posted on 2016/12/2 19:30:06 ( 453 reads )


INDIA, November 30, 2016 (Swarajya, by Aravindan Neelakandan): In April, 2016, in the renowned journal Frontiers of Psychology, Anthony Trewavas, a molecular biologist from University of Edinburgh, who has been working on plant perceptions, published a paper in which he stated: "Environmental awareness likely indicates consciousness. Spontaneity in plant behavior, ability to count to five and error correction indicate intention. Volatile organic compounds are used as signals in plant interactions and being complex in composition may be the equivalent of language accounting for self and alien recognition by individual plants." The paper has 96 references. The oldest reference was the work of JC Bose: Plant Response as a Means of Physiological Investigation. New York, NY: Longmans Green and Co. 1906 - 110 years old.

Jagadish Chandra Bose represents that rare breed of scientists who belonged to the future more than to the time they lived. When the world of science was totally dominated by the binary conflict between materialism and vitalism, he charted a new course that looked beyond the binaries. Today as science grows deeper and enlarges its canvas broader, Bose's pioneering work receives more attention.

Bose never opted for commercialization of science and tried to institutionalize such a culture through Bose Institute which refuses patenting to this day. Thus in Bose we have a scientist-seer who resonates with Indian spirit and values in the most profound sense of the terms. Bose is to plant physiology in particular what Darwin is to biology in general. It is time India starts celebrating his birthday as Bose Day for the holistic study of the phenomenon of life.

Much more at "source" above.

Now, Yoga Becomes Part of Nursing Curriculum

Posted on 2016/12/2 19:29:56 ( 391 reads )


PUDUCHERRY, INDIA, November 28,, 2016 (The Hindu): Yoga has now become part of the nursing curriculum at the Mahatma Gandhi Medical College and Research Institute (MGMCRI) under the Sri Balaji Vidyapeeth (SBV). The Centre for Yoga Therapy, Education and Research (CYTER), SBV, which had pioneered the incorporation of Yoga concepts in the MBBS curriculum two years ago and later for dental education, has now introduced slightly modified modules on the therapeutic potential of the practice of attaining body-mind harmony for nursing students. The Nursing College has included yoga therapy in the BSc Nursing curriculum with students receiving 90 hours of yoga therapy training through CYTER during the three-year course. K. Renuka, Dean, Nursing Faculty and Principal of Kasturba Gandhi Nursing College, stated that it was a first that all medical, dental and nursing students of a medical university were receiving regular training in yoga. In fact, CYTER hosted the 6th Foundation Day on the theme of "Introducing Yoga in Nursing Education."

Ananda Balayogi Bhavanani, CYTER Deputy Director, said that although the curriculum content was largely similar for all streams, there were minor modifications. If MBBS students were taught about how yoga could complement modern medicinal interventions in the management of lifestyle disorders such as diabetes or hypertension, nurses would learn more about those aspects of yoga that help patients recuperate from illness. Students of dental sciences are exposed to yoga concepts more as a self-care tool in addressing postural problems, he added.

Addressing the meet, SBV Vice Chancellor Professor K.R. Sethuraman reminded nursing students of their vital role in healthcare as the primary caregivers for patients and stressed the importance of yoga in their personal and professional lives. "It is imperative that advances in medicine include the holistic approach of yoga to face the current challenges in healthcare. The antiquity of yoga must be united with the innovations of modern medicine to improve quality of life throughout the world," he said.

Daily Inspiration

Posted on 2016/12/2 19:29:45 ( 238 reads )


There is no place more powerful for practice, more blessed or more marvelous than Mount Kailash.
-- Milarepa (c.1052–1135), Tibet's most revered yogi

A Sea Change in Pilgrimage to Sabarimala over Two Decades

Posted on 2016/12/1 18:54:12 ( 446 reads )


VIJAYAWADA, INDIA, November 30, 2016 (The Hindu): A lot of water must have flowed down the Pamba River in the past two decades and many changes have taken place in the journey to the popular Ayyappa shrine at Sabarimala. Joint Director of Ground Water and Ayyappa devotee A. Varaprasada Rao who had been to Sabarimala nearly two dozen times over two decades said there were many changes in the journey since he first went there in the early 90s.

Though the number had increased manifold the journey had become comfortable, he said. Earlier, pilgrims who started their journey from Vijayawada in the night reached Kalahasti by dawn where they broke their journey to get a darshan of Sri Kalahasteeswara before they continued their journey to Pamba. Because of the improvement in roads the motor vehicles, usually buses, are covering greater distance and faster. Now, Kanipakam has become the shrine for the first break.

The journey to Sabarimala is dotted by many shrines. Mr. Varaprasada Rao said the Tamil Nadu and Kerala governments had over the two decades renovated the shrines that were in a very dilapidated condition. "Besides the larger shrines like Siripuram, Thiruvannamalai, Palani and Guruvayur, there are several smaller shrines like Bhavani and the smaller Ayyappa temples which have been renovated. Facilities including parking for buses have been created near these shrines," he said.

Over 300 Ancient Manuscripts on Yoga to Be Deciphered

Posted on 2016/12/1 18:54:01 ( 544 reads )


NEW DELHI, INDIA, November 27, 2016 (Sunday Guardian Live): Around 300-400 manuscripts exist on different types of yoga in India's treasure box, not one of which has been deciphered. According to the National Mission for Manuscripts (NMM), these are part of the approximately ten million manuscripts in the country that are yet to be published. In fact, less than 10% of ancient manuscripts in India have been published.

The oldest manuscript in NMM's database belongs to the 6th century and is written in the Gilgit script, which belongs to the Gilgit Baltistan region in the north. Since its inception in 2003, the NMM has managed to create a database of over 4 million manuscripts in secular and religious sciences in over 57 scripts. However, scholars complain that the lack of published manuscripts, especially in ancient Indian sciences, has slackened India's potential dominance in the international scientific industry. Scholars believe that a major reason behind this has been the lack of political goodwill in investing in transliteration of ancient manuscripts.

The value of ancient Indian manuscripts is evident with Japan's rapid growth in ayurvedic research as the Asian neighbor has been known to invest in developing advanced ayurvedic technology. "Illiteracy in our ancient research has led us to follow the lead of other cultures because we do not know how much our heritage and science had excelled in the world. This ignorance has made us late-risers, but a genuine effort is needed to promote the study of ancient Indian texts that can help us in governance, scientific research, cultural development and medicine," said Dr. N.C. Kar, an expert in manuscripts and a coordinator at NMM.

Britain's New Five Pound Bank Note Contains Beef

Posted on 2016/12/1 18:53:51 ( 428 reads )


LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM, November 30, 2016 (New York Times): When it released a new 5-pound note in September, the Bank of England said the new polymer bills were stronger, safer and better for the environment. One thing they are not, it turns out, is meat-free. To the dismay of vegans and vegetarians across Britain, the Bank of England has confirmed that tallow was used in the base of the new notes, which are worth about US$6.25. Tallow, a hard, fatty substance usually made from rendered beef or mutton suet, is much more likely to be found in soap and candles than in a currency.

"There is a trace of tallow in the polymer pellets used in the base substrate of the polymer #5 notes," the Bank of England said repeatedly in responses to inquiries this week on social media. That led to an outpouring of outrage. The anger was not just abundant but also swift. By 4 p.m. British time on Wednesday, a petition calling on the Bank of England to make a vegan-friendly bank note -- "This is unacceptable to millions of vegans, vegetarians, Hindus, Sikhs, Jains and others in the U.K," it reads -- had received almost 100,000 signatures.

The new notes also represent something of a problem for Hindus. Cows are considered sacred in Hinduism, and eating beef is prohibited. The latest census, released in 2012, showed that there were more than 800,000 Hindus in England and Wales, making them one of the biggest religious groups there.

Daily Inspiration

Posted on 2016/12/1 18:53:41 ( 226 reads )


It's important to go into solitude from time to time and think about God, especially for those who busy themselves day and night with worldly duties and responsibilities. When the plant is young, it should be fenced on all sides, otherwise goats and cattle may eat it up.
-- Sri Ramakrishna Paramahansa (1836–1886)

Roots Revival: India's Classical Dance Is Back En Vogue in Delhi

Posted on 2016/11/30 19:58:31 ( 369 reads )


NEW DELHI, INDIA, November 26, 2016 (The Peninsula Qatar): Students elegantly curve their hands before breaking into synchronized footwork at a class in New Delhi, where growing numbers are signing up for Indian traditional dance classes rooted in Hindu mythology. Class participants range from from pre-teens to surgeons and marketing managers -- but they have all chosen to learn traditional Indian dance, which emerged from the country's temples centuries ago, over Western options such as ballet, jazz and hip hop.

"Tradition is becoming popular now," said Nitya Pant, a Mumbai-based marketing executive who practices Odissi -- an ancient temple-based dance that honors Hindu Lord Jagannath, Lord of the Universe. "No other form can give you the satisfaction that classical dance gives you," added the 29-year-old. "You feel like you're one with God."

India is home to eight major classical dance styles including Odissi and Bharatnatyam -- a genre originating in the country's southern temples more than 2,000 years ago -- that tell stories of gods through facial expressions, hand gestures and rapid footwork. Once performed in temples and royal courts, India's classical dance has found international resonance with troupes performing around the world. Thanks to a mushrooming Indian diaspora, traditional dance schools have popped up globally, piquing the interest of other nationalities too.

An Indian Thanksgiving - It's All about Gratitude

Posted on 2016/11/30 19:58:21 ( 285 reads )


UNITED STATES, November 22, 2016 (Lassi With Lavina, by Lavina Melwani): If Thanksgiving is a festival of gratitude, then Indians have been preparing for it their whole lives. In India, take a walk down the Mumbai waterfront in the early morning mist, and you see ordinary citizens quietly feeding the fish and the birds. Their daily day doesn't really begin until the deities in their home shrine have been venerated with fresh flowers and offered prasadam. It is only after eating a little of this blessed offering does the family sit down to their meals. Many remember to keep aside a portion of the food for a hungry person or the birds. It is all about sharing.

Every festival is about counting one's blessings and thanking God for them. Indeed, buying a new car or new home entails special puja or prayer ceremonies to bless the new item and to offer thanks. "Gratitude is exalted as one of the most important virtues (dharma) in many Hindu texts," says Dr. Vasudha Narayanan, Distinguished Professor of Religion, University of Florida. "It is both a human and divine virtue; prayers and panegyrics say Vishnu has qualities such as compassion and gratitude. By this they mean that if a human being does a good deed, the divine being wants to show His gratitude in many ways. The Ramayana says: Krte ca prati kartavyam esham dharmah sanatanah (Ramayana, Sundara Kanda) "To repay a good deed with another - this is the essence of Sanatana Dharma."

Are there any Hindu prayers which are popular with families for this occasion? Since saying of grace before food is not a traditional custom in India where often food was sanctified and served, this is new territory for Hindus. In fact, even for the South Indian festival of Pongal which is generally interpreted as thanksgiving, there are no specific prayers, says Narayanan. Yet as she points out, "The Hindu traditions are dynamic; we add, we modify, we jettison, and we co-opt rituals very easily.

More of this thoughtful article at "source" above.

Canteens at Govt. Medical Facilities to Provide Pure Vegetarian Meals

Posted on 2016/11/30 19:58:10 ( 275 reads )


SEREMBAN, MALAYSIA, November 17, 2016 (The Star): Vegetarians can now enjoy their meals without any worry when dining at cafeterias in government hospitals and other medical facilities. This follows a directive from the Health Ministry that these cafeteria operators must provide food that is strictly vegetarian to anyone who patronized their outlet. Ministry director-general Datuk Dr. Noor Hisham Abdullah said the demand for vegetarian food from both patients and visitors to these facilities have been increasing.

Dr. Noor Hisham said the ministry decided to introduce the ruling after receiving many complaints from the public, especially those who had to stay at hospitals to look after their sick relatives. With the new ruling, cafeteria operators have also been told to be sensitive to the needs of vegans who consumed only greens, lacto-vegetarians who also took milk and dairy products and lacto-ovo-vegetarians who were okay with eating eggs.

Daily Inspiration

Posted on 2016/11/30 19:58:00 ( 186 reads )


You need to be a great theist before you can become a great monist. Theistic practices of humility, service and worship form the basis of yoga, which then leads to levels of samadhi and monistic realizations. It is a ladder with definite, clear steps.
-- Satguru Bodhinatha Veylanswami, publisher of Hinduism Today

Hindu Pilgrims Cancel Trip to Pakistan Due to Tension

Posted on 2016/11/26 18:32:24 ( 552 reads )


ISLAMABAD, PAKISTAN, November 27, 2016 (Navhind Times): About 200 Hindu pilgrims in India canceled their trip to Pakistan as they were not allowed to undertake the journey due to ongoing tension between the two countries, an official said today. The pilgrims were issued visas by Pakistan High Commission for the trip to holy Katas Raj Shiva temple in Chakwal district near capital Islamabad. They were scheduled to arrive in Pakistan on November 28 on a three-day pilgrimage to Katas temple complex, considered one the most holy sites for Hindus, said Siddique ul Farooq, chairman of Evacuee Trust Property Board (ETPB).

"Their scheduled visit has been canceled," Farooq told Dawn newspaper. "We had issued visas to the pilgrims but their government did not allow them to visit Pakistan," he said, adding that that comprehensive security arrangements had been made for the Indian pilgrims. Farooq cited the border tension as the reason behind the cancellation of the visit. However, the Indian ministry sources said they did not tell the pilgrims to cancel their trip and the call may have been taken by the organisers. Hindu pilgrims visit Katas Raj twice a year in February and November.

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