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Youth Outreach with the Kauai Adheenam


on 2017/1/8 20:24:10 ( 567 reads )

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KAUAI, HAWAII, January 6, 2017 (Wordpress by Manu): My parents and I are spending the first two weeks of 2017 in Kauai, Hawaii. A large part of my identity which is masked in my daily life is visible here--my Hindu identity, that is. Each time my family returns to the island, it's a pilgrimage of sorts. The Kauai Aadheenam, or the Kauai Hindu Monastery [home of Hinduism Today and Hindu Press International], is located in the hills of Kapaa, and it is absolutely a different world. Perhaps my favorite part is the ability to sing each morning following the 9 am puja; this incredible opportunity gives me a chance to feel the immensity of the atmosphere, to gain some peace, and to rejuvenate--all of which are difficult to come by in the bustle of our daily lives.

However, outside this bubble, it's not that I hide this identity, but that there's no place or reason for it to come up. My childhood was sectioned--I was Indian and Hindu at home, but these identities rarely meshed with my school life. In high school, we learned about religions, with little to no discussion on Hinduism outside of the caste system. Because of this narrow-minded view of Hinduism, I've received a number of ill-informed questions about my religion, comments that I practice paganism and that my religion isn't real, and furthermore, my Hindu peers are unable to explain the tenets of Hinduism in order to fix these misconceptions.

The swamis of the Kauai Monastery are hoping to address this problem and to find mediums through which to teach and attract younger generations. They have written a number of books to share Hindu teachings with all ages, made movies on the history of Hinduism (http://www.himalayanacademy.com/readlearn/hindu-history), and created mobile applications such as Spiritual Workout (http://www.himalayanacademy.com/readlearn/hindu-history) for us to engage with daily practice. Still, this application requires a basic understanding of Hinduism and also need to be advertised in order to gain popularity.

More at "source" above.

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