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Hinduism Today, Jun, 1997

Hinduism Today, Jun, 1997

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Hinduism Today, Jun, 1997
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IiItmulSM TOD\Y was rounded January 5. 1979, by Salguru Sivaya Subramuniyaswami
10 strenglhen all Hindu lineages. Published by Himalayan Academy, 107 !Caholalele
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PUBLISHER: Satguru Sivaya Submmuniyaswami
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JUNE, 1997

INTERN ATI O.N AL
Smuggling: Auctioning India's Treasures 17
Cloning: A Sheep is Cloned. Are Humans
Next? A Hindu Perspective 22
Cover Story: Charming and Chilling: Nepal
Still Worships Virgin Goddesses 26
Religion: Athavale's Heroic Life and Plump
Priz6 Are Celebrated in New York 34
Diamond Jubilee: The Brahma Kumaris'
Hold a Birthday Bash in Delhi 48
Technology: Sacred Architecture Under
Ct'mstruction at 1rerala Colloquium 52
· LIF:ESTYLE
Trinidad: He Built a Temple in the Sea 36
Astrology: Are Clones Off the Charts? 36
InSight: Sacred Mau.na 30
Family: It's OK Again to Stay Home 40
• Business: One Crafty Crafts Fair 19
OPINION
Pdblisher's Desk: Discovering the Powers
, of Gratitude an,p. Appreciation 6'
Editorial: A Hindu Take on Cloning 8
My Turn: Who's GJ iding Science? . 9
14
Healing: After All, ;Boys Will Be Men 44
Minister's Message: yvomena s Partners 50
DIGESTS
Quotes &. Quips
Dlaspora
Briefly .
10 Evolutions
Digital Dharma
20
44
54
• COVER: The youthful Royal Kumari of Kathmandu during the yearly Indra Jatra
' festival. (Right, top) In procession-ever calm amidst the clamor. (Bottom) Former
http://www.HlndulsmToday.kaual.hl.ull
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Royal Kumari, Dil Kumari Sakya, reminisces her days as divinity. See 26 .. '
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PUBLISHER'S DESK
Two Powers: Gratitude
and Appreci'ation
HSome people complain because God put thorn's on
roses. Others praise Him for putting roses among thorns."
BY SATGURU SIVAYA SUBRAMUNIYASWAMI
UCH OF LIFE TODAY IS BASED
depreciation and denigra-
tion of public leaders, groups,
governments, religions, corpo-
and even family mem-
bers. This is negative living, always.
pointing out faults in no uncertain
terms and ignoring the virtues. A
Hawaiian civic leader lamented to us
recently that people are cruel in their
complaints. "It's ok to criticize, but
they should be kindly when doing so!"
A story I was told decades ago re-
lates. A guru was sitting with two dis-
ciples under a sprawling banyan tree .
in India. The older student inquired, "Guruji, how long must I wait
until I realize God?" The teacher responded, "Enlightenment is
n0t something that can be predicted, but since you have asked," he
leaned over and spoke in the right ear, "it will be tWenty more
lives." "Oh, no!" the youth cried in dismay, '1 don't know if I can
wait that long!" The other follower, naturally curious, asked of his
own future. The guru whispered, "Liberation will come after you
live as many lives as'this banyan has leaves!" Hearing this, the seek-
er jumped to his feet and began to aance. Why? He was suddenly
overtaken with the assurance that he would ultimately be liberat-
ed. Ecstatic with appreciation, he transcended the mind at-
tained his Liberation that very moment. The fIrst student was on
the path of depreciation. For him, the pot was half empty. For the
sec0nd, immersed in thankfulness, the pot was half full.
Appreciation is a beautiful, soulful qualitx: available to everyone
in every circumstance: being thankful for life's little treasures,
grateful for the opportunity to begin the day where you are, appre-
ciating the perfect place your karma and God's grace has brought
you to. Appreciation is life-giving. Depreciation without apprecia-
tion is heartlessly destructive. Yet, it i.s the all-too-common way of
our times. When something is d<ine that is good, helpful or loving,
it is often overlooked, treated as something expected. No acknowl-
edgement is shown, no gratitude expressed. But if a shortcoming is
seen, everyone is swift to point it out!
The Vedas, the Tirukural and our many other holy texts indi-
cate a better way. The wise ones' knew tHat all humankind possess-
es'freedom of choice and the willpower to use it. Today that free-
dom is usually used, unwisely, to downgrade others as well as
oneself. Ignorance seems to be almost as all-pervasive as Yod. We
fmd it everywhere and within every situation. It does not have to
be this way.
6 HINDUISM TODAY · JUNE 1 9 97
Gratitude is a quality of the soul. It
does not depend on how much we pos-
sess. It's opposite, ingratitude, is a quali-
ty of the external ego. When we abide
in soul consciousness, we give thanks for
whatever we have, no matter how little
or how much. When in ego conscious-
ness, we are never grateful or satisfIed,
no matter how much we have.
I have faith in human integrity, in
that unfailing "still, small voice of the
soul" which each who listens for can
hear. We are essentially pure souls tem- .
porarily living in a physical body. We
can and should use our God-given gift
of free will encased in love to make a
difference in the world today, even if it
is in a small way. All of us making the
same difference together do so in a big
way. Sishyas should be grateful to their
gurus, husbands to their wives, wives to
their husbands, both to their children,
students to their teachers and teachers
to their Its far more effective
to praise others and appreciate what we
have than to find fault and complain
about what we don't· have!
Gratitude and appreciation are the
key words for a better life. They are the
spell that is cast to dissolve hatred, hurt
and sadness, the mediciI\e which heals
subjective states of mind, restoring self-
respect, confIdence and security. Shall
we review them one at a time and con-
sider.a practice, a sadhana, for each?
First, gj:atitude. It is a feeling within
the heart that we cannot suppress for
long when overcome with abundant memories of all the good that I
has come into our lives. Most often, people remember the bad hap-
penings, perhaps because they make the deepest impressions in
the subconscious and are not expected. Good happenings are ex-
pected and, therefore, tend to be overlooked. The sadhana here is
to take out paper: and pen and list all the good that has come into
your life during the past fIve years. The list will grow as memory is
stimulated. Should it not be possible to think of even one good
thing, then write the afrmnation several times, "I am a spiritual
being of light maturing in the ocean of experience." Soon a good
memory will come up followed bl more. Feelings of loving appre-
ciation will begin to flow toward those who participated in the
good times. Forgiveness then wells up for the bad times. Amazing-
ly, on'the day I was writing these tlloughts down an island person
handed me a paper on which was written this wisdom from the
great Catholic mystic Meister Eckhart, "If the only prayer you eveF
say in your entire life is thank you, it will be enough." t
Now. let's look at appreciation, turning our thanks toward the
,
A full cup: Respect and gratefulness are keys to endUring, harmo-
nious human relationships. Offering appreciation (gunagrahanam
Sanskrit, symbolized by the nectar-bearing pot), one
man acknowledges a friend's unique qualities.
people in our hves. The sadhana of appreciation is to approach
those you are grateful to and tell them, to their face, while looking
deep into their eyes, how much you esteem and value them. Be
specifIc. Find details to share so they know this is not a shallow
compliment. Explain what each one has done to inspire this loving
confrontation and convince each in turn that you are sincere. The
look of a full smiling {ace, eyes shining and heart full of love, is
conv.incing enough in itself Words of appreciation are words peo-
ple do not often hear. These confrontations do not happen nearly
often enough among friends and relatives in today's world. Loving
appreciation is a life-changing force just waiting 'to be used. Appre-
ciate community leaders, liusiness associates, spiritual mentors,
family members as often as you can. Loving appreciation is a mag-
ic formula that works both ways. When we commend another, we
are automatically uplifted.
Here's a true story. A young man tried the aeove practice on his
rather gruff employer, whose heart melted when he heard the
words, "One of the things that I appreciate most about you, sir, is
your brilliance as an inventor. You have so much to teach me." Af-
ter saying that andtIIlOre, the youth urged the astonished elder to
pass on the voicing of appreciation to another person. The man sat
with his son that same evening and awkwardly told him how much
he appreciated his only son's many fIne qualities. "I never take
time to share these things. I tend to keep to myself and be de-
)!landing and harsh because of the pressures of work. But please
know that I do love you." The youth began sobbing and confessed,
"Father, thank you. I was planning to commit suicide tomorrow be-
cause I thought you didn't care about me any more. Now I won't."
You never know how much difference your appreciation will make.
To prepare yourself for this sadhana, stand before a mirror and
look at your face, right into your eyes, {illd say aloud, as if talking
to another person: "I am grateful to you and appreciate your being
in my life." Then describe in many sentences, to yourself, all the
good you have done during the past fIve years. Yop can read from
your list of goodness that you made earlier. You will soon see the
reflection in the mirror soften, begin to smile as it absorbs the
happy of your appreciation. Once this art is perfected be-
tween you and you, you can begin to appreciate others in the same
way. Don't be shy. No one is shy when angry. Why be shy when we
are happy and ovingly grateful?
There is a brave new world on the horizon for followers of
dharma, one in which we are kindly to each other, trusting and
aware of one anothers' feelings, a world where we acknowledge our
debt to others, express our thanksgiving, fITst in 0ur silent heart t
and then outwardly. Gratituc;le is one of lifes richest resources, con-
taining the power to change people's lives. Its opposite is a disease
that erodes all contentment and fIlls our life with emptiness an<;l.
despair. Take heart. These sadhanas on gratitude and appreciation
have worked wonders for many. Yes, each one of us can make a
difference. 1J.1e world is changing, and we can make it change for
the better, or we can leave it in. the hands of those who make
changes for the badder: It's our choice.
I appreciate each of our readers of HINDUISM TODAY. You are
the men and women, boys and girls who are strengthening Hin-
duism in hundreds of remote communities, upholding the dharma,
setting the record straight. It is you who are inspiring us to pro-
duce the magazine each mon'lli, giving us so many ideas and
cheering us on. You are making a great difference by simply living
and speaking on these high principles that are so important to us
all and to the future of humanity.
JUNE, 1997 HINDUISM TODAY 7

, ,
I
EDITORIAL
There are two fundamental principles .
Bill Clinton
a Question
that every Hindu applies to determination
of right and wrong in qJestions of conduct
or conscience. The first is ahimsa, nonin-
jury. The second is nearness to God lead-
ing to moksha, spiritual liberation. Every
action, word or even thought is judged
against these two touchstones. Of course,
the application of such broad principles is '
open to interpretatibn. How much injury is
permissible to elone a person or find a
cure for cancer? Some would answer none,
not even to laboratory animals. Other Hin-
dus postulate that the very search for a
cure assumes that cancer is an unneces-
sary '€lvil, a crack in the universal machine
The President is asking all faiths, includ\ng
Hinduism, about the ethics of human cloning
BY THE EDI·TOR
UESTIONS FROM THE WHITE HOUSE ARE INFREQUENT
enough, even wnen indirect, that the HINDUISM TODAY
staff was equally honored and stunned by a March 14
phone call from the National Bioethics Advisory Commit-
tee. They have been commissioned by executive order to
submit to Bill Clinton a summary of the ethics of human cloning
for his early-April contemplations in deciding US laws to im-
p1se on this remarkable, some say frightening, new scientific possi-
bility. ·Part of the report to the President will be a summary of reli-
gious views of the issue, and we were deputed to assemble the
Hindu eonvicti"on, summarized in our story on page 22.
The notion of having perfect genetic copies of <'Jurselves,
the stuff of syience Mction, is heading toward fact and causing a
good deal of incendiary debate along the way. Crities say, "One of
me is quite enough, and one of Adolf Hitler was too m¥1y. Theres
5.4 billion of us. Why make more?" Initial discussions..goth with
swamis and falIlllies indicate unequivocally
overwhelmingly that Hindus find the
idea of replicating human beings unneces-
sary, unethical and unthinkable. They
recalled a surprising number of cloning ref-
erences in the old In9,ian tales. Has it hap-
pened before? Could-it happen in the
future that we would meet or even
the dharma to dozens of copies of
ourselves? It gives new meaning to the Hin-
du of seeing ourselves in others.
Many religionists find it frightening to
watch man tinkering with God's universe.
There's no user's manual, they fret. What if
we break something permanently? The
Creator made it with loving intent and di-
vine intelligence, they offer, and it is arro-
gant, foolhardy and downright sinful for
people to play God with something as pro-
foundly consequential as the huJ:i.1an genetic
instruction.
It is possible to understand such a prudent
warning and still \,lisagree. While the argu-
ment makes sense with a Bibl:ical God, Hinduism does not
separate man froJIl God so coml2!etely. Man is God; and God is
man. Indian yogis and mystics speak of the co creative process of
evolution. Man is not merely following a distant Deitys decrees in
fulfillment of fhe Divine Law; he is engaged, alongside the Archi-
tect, in engineering that Law; or you could say God is working His .
will through mankind, including scientists.
8 HINDUISM. TODAY. 1997
' needing urgent repair. What of the pur- ,
pose behind it all? What of the need some
have to experience cancer? Cancer is the
problem, says mind. How we confront cancer is the real issue, says
spirit. ATe we looking for a perfect, death-defying body' or are ,w.e
looking for soulful qualities derived from experiencing life's joys
and sufferings with wisdom and equanimity?
Most Hindu spiritual leaders we spoke to were less concerned for
the moral issueS' and casuistry surrounding human cloning than for
the practical need. Why do this? they asked. Will it lielp us to
draw nearer to God if we have 'such bodieS'? Will the soul's evolu-
tion toward Self Realization be advanced one millimeter? Will the
inner consciousness ge enhanced? They think not.
But there ate other voices. Some told us that a cloned bodX might
be useful. One noted that in ancient priests for the tem-
ples were specially cr,eated by hypnotizing or drugging two virgins
and arranging for them to conceive a child. Because that sexual en-
counter was passionless (there even remained no memory of its
having it was said that their progeny would be
. unwOI:ldly anq dispassionate, qualities wanted
in a priest. Parallel instructions exist in
ancient Indian texts, explaining how to con-
ceive a child of this nature or that, all based
on the thoughts and practices of the
parents during coitus. If is true, might
not cloning, with its total elimination of
human sexuality, provide a physical-emotion-
al home for an advanced soul seekipg an
earthly passage of solace, needing to live
. without emotion or powerful desires and sen-
timents? And might not cloning bring us back
t01the Indian ideal,of a 120-year lifespan?
It's hard for in old- I
fashioned bodies to think dispassionately
about all this. Fears arise, evoking the spect¢
of human farming, of armies of look-alj.ke sdl-
diers, of avaricious organ sellers and irrecon-
cilable questibns of inheritance, personhood
and belonging. With all that complex surro-
gacy, whose childreIil are the clones, what
happens to the idea of family? In fact, human'
clohing is just the most recent moral clillem-
ma between conscience and science. We have stood here before.
A short list will put the problem in perspective. In the 15th cen-
tury there was a terrible outcry when the first rifles and pistols
were made in Spain. Surety, we thought, this would bring the end..
When Karl Benz built the first automobile in Germany i n 1885,
'clergy thought it of the devil and condemned it harshly. Many will
remember the soul-searcbing that greeted the first successful
atomic bomb test at Alamogordo; New
Mexico, on July' 16, 1945. When kidneys
were first implant ed into humans in ._
1960s and a heart in the 19805', the moral
furor was universal and P9werful. Ditto
. whenynan set foot on the Jlloon July 20,
1969, and again when British researchers
perfected in iitra of the
human egg, leading to the bir th of Louise
Brown, the world's first "test-tube bab/'
conceived outside the human body and
born on July 25, 1978; and again with sur-
rogate mothers. You get the idea. Things
that at first seem unthinkable gradually be-
come accepted. Whp today thinks of a test-
tube infant as a freak or eonsiders plane
travel to be against the natural order?
Many dtd back then. '
Hindlls realize there are karmic
consequences to ev.ery act, including
cloning. Would your parabdha
which rules. the present life
impacted if a duplicate of your body lived
on 50 years, 100 or more beyond your
death? Would you, the soul, be held up in
.. the astral plane, awaiting a new birth
inde1initely, 'lingering until your very-
much-alive physical body expired? Hindus
consider that this life's karmas are not com,-
plete until the body succ\mbs, and having
a par,t of the body remain alive could per-
haps forestall freedom. ,If oloning so
impacts spiritual progress, we would
certainly approach it with circumspection.
Was it intuition that led Hindus to protect
, themselves from such a fate by requiring
No one can dig up a Hindu's
corpse and clone him or her from a piece
of bone or skin. Not true of Indian
culture, where we can still find the grave of
a pharaoh or Isaac Newj:on or Elvis. Still,
India preserved her sailits, for they are the
only Hindus traditionally interred. Did the
rishis. anticipate cloning mille=ia ago, and
set up principles that would assure only the
bodies sf the most advanced souls would
be cloned in some distant future? Hmmm!
Our summary to Bill Clinton will include I
a Hindu appeal for laws to restrain clorling
of humans and emphatically urge him to
engage spiritllally-minded people to guide
, and control the process. Good people are
. the best promise of a good outcOl;ne. We
will 'share with him full transcripts of the
sagacious counsel on cloning we
this month from spiritual leaders in several
countries. We will inform the President
that Hinduism }:ondones nor con-
demns the march of science. If done with
intent and cQnsciousness, it may
benefit; and if done in the service 0f self-
ishness, greed and 'Power, it may bring se-
vere' karmic consequences. The siinple rule
is this: Let dharma be the guide for all
such explorations.
r
,
I
Keep.Science at
Peace with Nature'
Spiritually and -responsible people
must oversee any cloning research
BY AMRITf.-NANUAMAYI
HE IDEA OF CLONIN€;,
though implemented only
recently through modern
science, was in the minds
of the ancient saints and
sages of India. Quite a few rele-
. vant examples can be found in
the Ved.as and ancient wri.tings.
However, man's. attempt to
change the natural order of
things has a long-term potential
of unexpected negative results.
Historically, it is impossible and unwise
to interfere with the advance of science.
The fuller understanding of cellular and
processes can enhance the
genetic engineering alieady unClerwa}\ and
lead to new treatments for disease and the
relief of suffering.
However, because of the ethical issues
involved, this research should be carried
out at appwved institutions in conformance
with the guidelines of ethical forums and
legislative protection. These forums should
be composed of spiritually aware and re-
sponsible whcysincerely desire to
s.erve humanity. These forums can then
advise industry ang government as to a
prudent course of action. The advance of
science can be used for both good and eviL
The powerful forces within atom can
be harnessed to mankind or to build '
weapons of destruction.
Many identical suits can be .fabricated
from the same bolt of cloth, but what can
we. say about the wearer of the 'suit? While
science may eventually succeed in cloning
a carbon copy of a physical form, the in-
awelling consciousness of that form is still
beyond the reach of material science. .
God has established a natural order in
His creation which contributes to the spiri-
tual evolution of life. These natural
es, if interfered with, will ultimately result
in sorrow and suffering wliich is the state
of the world today.
A government alone carmot
do anythingmithout the 'sincere
and wholehearted cooperation-
of the people. For this to hap-
pen, it shoulcl be a government
which works in accordance
with the will and wishes of
people wni) love nature. People
. should be taught to function
from their heatts. Societies
should be formed in every vil-
lage in order to create ?Il awareness of the
significance of protecting and preserving
nature. Mere intellectual understanding is.
not enough. The teachers and counselors of
these societies should have the ability to
encourage people to love nature, to feel
compassion for all of creation and its crea-
tures. The teachers themselves should be
highly competent and efficient people, who
can inspire o1'hers to do whatever they are
taught. Only then will there be any benefit.
Looking at nature and observing its -6elf-
less way of giving, we can become aware of
our own limitations. That will help to de-
velop devotion and self-surrender to God.
. Thus, nature helps us to become close to
God and teaches us to truly worship Him.
In reality, nature is nothing but Gods visi-
ble form which Wf'J can and' experi-,
ence, through our senses. By loving and .
serving nature, we are worshiping-God
Himself A sincere Truth seeker carmot
harm nature he or she sees nature
as God. A rear scientist should be a real
lover-a lover of mankind, a lover of all
creation and a lover of life.
By creating a balance between spiritual
and material science, we can certainly im-
prove the quality of life on this planet. This
als6 involves an understanding of nature
and living in harmony with it.
Ammachi; lwnored as a "President of
Hinduism" at the Parliament;.. of the World's
Religions in 1993, lives in Kerala, India.
JUNE , 199 7 HINDUISM; TODA¥ -9
,

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"Whatever appears in the world is God.
No one knqws beginning, or ynd."
Load too many of them and even peacock
feathers would break a sturdy cart's axle.
Tirukural, Verse 475
. .
"You are fine. How am I?" Asked by one
psychic upon meeting another psychic on
the Street .
Muktananda (1908-1982)
"Nothing is permanent but change." Greek
philosopher 'Heracleitus (540--480BCE) .
'That deathless love which the ignorant
have for the fleeting obj.ects of the senses-
as I keep remembering You, may that love
not s1ip away from my heart. "
Vishnu Purana, Verse 1.20.23
As he stepped out on the golf course at
Ooty, India, a distinguished Hindu gentle-
man was asked, "But why are you wearing
two dothis (wrap-aro.lJnds)?" He replied
with an optimistic smile, "Because today r
might get a 'hole-in-one!' "
Said to be a true story, a thermo,dynamics
professor had written a take-home exam
for his graduate students. It had one ques-
tion: "Is hell exothermic (heat releasing) or
endothermic (heat absorbing)? Support
your a11swer with a proof." students
responded with proofs using Boyle's Law,
relating temperature, pressure and volume.
One student wrote: "We postulate that if
souls exist, then they must have some mass
(weight). At what rate are souls moving into
hell and at what rate are souls leaVing?!
think that we can safely assume that once a
soul gets to it will not leave.
'1\s for souls eIltering hell, let's look at the
different world religions. Some state that if
you are not a member of their religion, you
will go to hell. Since there are more than
one of these religions and'people do not
belong to more than one religion, we can
conclude that all people and all s.ouls go to
hell. With birth and death rates as they
are, we can expect the number of souls in
,hell to increase exponentially.
"Now, we look at the rate of change iq
volume in helL Boyle's Law states that in
order for the temperature and pressure in
hell to stay the same, the ratio of the mass
of souls and volume needs to stay constant.
So, if hell is expanding at a slower rate than
the rate at which souls enter hell, then the
/
temperature and pressure in hell will in-
crease until all hell breaks loose. Of course,
if hell is expanding at a rate faster than the
increase of souls in hell, then the tempera-
ture and pressure will drop until hell
freezes over."
L L-____________ ______________________ __ ________
10 HI :t< DUISM TODA-Y J U,NE , 1997
Jains of Rajasthan, where boys are initiated at a very early age
MONASTI C LIFE
Monks' Initiation Blocked
O
N FEBRUARY 8TH, IN ALWAR, RAJASTHAN, INDIA, DIS-
trict authorities raided the Jain monastery of Mahavir
Bhavan, They took away 12-year-old Arun Arora and
two other children who were under the guardianship of the
priests. The legal "abduction" was mounted to prevent the per-
formance of an age-old ceremony the following day, to initiate
Arun as a Jain monk. In the week preceeding the event, planned
as a grand public celebration, factions within the Jain communi-
ty, social activitists and a local Hindi daily newspaper success-
fully agitated to thwart the "initiation of a minor boy against the
provision of the law." Opponents contended that though the boy
came to the monastery with his parents' consent when he was
nine years old, he should not be initiated until the age of 18,
They also plan to push for laws banning the practice in all com-
munities. Jains siding with the priests point out that early initia-
tion into monastic life is traditional in many religions.
INTERFAITH
Preying on Kashi
C
HRISTIAN EVANGELISM IS
hot on the internet as the
9,000-strong Youth With A
Mission in 130 countries coordi-
nate a May '97 "30 Days Hindu
Prayer Focus." Guidebooks and
leaders denigrate Hinduism,
Ganges worship and the power
of Kashi: "One of the world's
oldest cities, Varanasi (Kashl,
' City of Light' ) on the banks of,
the sacred river Ganges draws
thousands of 'Hindu pilgrims
annually, as well as Western
spiritual seekers. We see from
history that Varanasi is a world
influencer, a place of learning
that goes out and touches the
God wants Varanasi to
be associated with the Gospel.
India and Hinduism
are entwined with
powers that withstand
Truth. It is time they
bow the knee to the
Lord Jesus!"
Kashi: Hin.du rites for
deceased parents '
Rigorous Rites
I
NDIA' S ADI SANKARA ORDER
of monks are spiritual authori-
ties for much of India's Vedic
priesthood and the large Hindu
Smaria denomination. On in-
struction from the pontiff of
Sringeri monastery in Karp,ata-
ka, the fledgling Sringeri Vidya
Bharati Foundation Inc., uSA, is
poised to make history by con-
ducting a classic Athi Rudra
Maha Yagna Vedic fire rite on a
magnitude unheard of outside
India. From Aug. 22 to Sept. 1,
121 priests will chant the most
powerful prayer of Hindu scrip-
ture, called "Sri Ruruam," (a 20-
minute chant) 14,641 times in
Shroudsburg, Pennsylvania. The
4,900 hours of prayer and fire
ceremonies spanning 11 days
are unprecedented in America.
BANGLADE>SH
RKM in Dhaka
F
OUNDED IN 1897 BY SWAMI
Vivekananda when West ,
Bengal was still part of India,
the Ramakrishna Mission in
Dhaka is now in Bangladesh.
Under the direction of Swami
Aksaran'anda.,:since 1972,
the mission maintains a
daily schedule of spiritual
disciplines and teaching
programs, a fun annual
festival roster, runs a ju-
nior high school, a stu-
dents' home, a free li-
brary, a vocational
training center, a med-


rntt NINl llII. INCIM I. fIOttl UIt HM)IOM
I\I: \ UI/,YINC IUl l"lllUl."ICN II.HO
National Geographic Jeep ad
POP C ULTURE
Jeepl-\sanas
I
NEXORABLY, HINDU CULTURE
is seeping into all levels of the
modern world. A striking exam-
ple appeared in a February,
1997, National Geographic ad-
vertisement by Jeep. Yoga pos-
tures were featured including a
tongue-in-cheek at-the-wheel
asatta called "The Jeep Grand
Cherokee." The lead slogan,
"Nine principal postures for
achieving gre8;ter relaxation and
Self-Discovery," unabashedly
promoted the cul!ure of yoga to
NG's ten million plus readers.
and facilities for monastic train-
ing. In Bangladesh there are ten
affliated Ramakrishna Mission
centers !\,hich all playa great
role in relief and rehabilitation I
work. An able organizer, Swami
Aksarananda has extended RK
Mission worI$:s to the remote ar-
eas of 64 districts of
Bangladesh.
ical project in Dhaka Dhaka's strong Ramakrishna Mission
CLOCk 'WISE FROM TOP: COREL; SRINGERI DHARATI VIDYA FOUN-
DATION; JEEP CORPORATION; 5ASHUDED DHAR; RAJESH DEDI
JUNE , 1997 HI N DUISM TODAY 11
Siva 'worship in Varanasi's Vishwanatha Temple with ghee lamps, conch shells and food offerings
INDIA
Siva's Priests Disenfranchised
servants of the temple" and
only receive offerings for actual
services rendered to devotees,
the court decreed. The judg-
ment held that scripture re-
quires liturgical competence to
merit appointment. Misconduct
or unfitness for service consti-
tutes grounds for dismissal.
O
N MARCH 18, REPORTS THE
Indian Express, India's
Supreme Court upheld an Uttar
Pradesh state act which abol-
ished the of priests of
centuries-old Kashi Vlswanatha
temple in Varanasi to receive
offerings from pilgrims. The
legislation also transferred man-
agement of the temple to the
state, disinheriting and "firing"
the priests. It was a sad new
piece of the puzzle of Hindu
'temple administration in post-
feudal India in which a secular
government forced to com-
pensate for the absence of any
self-regulating infrastructure
for Hindu temples and clerics.
by the mismanage-
ment of the temple and the ex-
ploitation of the devotees," the
court held that the priests were
not a [passive 1 integral part of
religion [like a shrine or Deity 1
who could receive offerings
simply by virtue of holding a
hereditary post. "Priests are the
It is true that innocent and
pious pilgrims to the holy city
are routinely rudely accosted
by demanding priests. But the
contrast of state intervention in
Hindu affairs versus a hands-
off policy tdward Christian and
Muslim institutions is perplex-
ing for many Hindus . .
FROM THE VEDAS , MANKIND' S OLDEST SCRIPTURE
Fire is His head, the sun and moon His eyes,
space His ears, the Vedas His speech, the wind
His breath, the universe His heart. From His
feet the earth has originated. Verily, He is the
inner Self of all beings.
ARTHARVA VEDA, MUNDUKYA UP AN 2.1.4
God is, in truth, the whole universe: what was,
what is and what beyond shall ever be. He is
the God of life immortal and of all life that
lives by food. His hands and feet are every-
where. He has hands and mouths everywhere.
He sees all, He hears all. He is in all, and He Is.
YAJUR VEDA, SVETASVATARA UP AN 3.15-16
12 HINDUISM TODAiY JU.NE, 1997
We know not. We cannot understand how He
can be explained. He is above the known, and
He is the unknown. Thus have we heard from
the ancient sages who explained this truth to us.
SAMA VEDA, KENA UPAN 1.3
To Him ascend these hymns, these steed-swift
prayers. He alone hears my words. All-mover,
all-conqueror, conveyer of sacrifice, the Child,
ever aiding, He assumes great power.
RIG VEDA 1.45.1-3
He is the Supreme Brahman, the Self of all, the
chief foundation of this world, subtler than the
subtle, eternal. That thou art; thou art That.
ARTHARVA VEDA, KAIVALYA UPAN 116
Verses here are from the Vedic Experience
by Prof Raimon Panikkar; viewable at
www.HinduismToday.kauai.hi.uslashrami
HimalayanAcademylPublicat ionsl
VedicExperienceNEIndex. html
UNITED KINGDOM
Beef- Free Kids
F
EAR OF MAD COW DISEASE
is sprouting a new meatless
generation in Britain. A Vege-
tarian Society survey shows 38-
percent of 4-to-11-year-olds are '
avoiding beef and 20 percent
avoid most meat. Only three
percent of the children surveyed
were strict vegetarians, but
"almost a quarter of that age
group were avoiding meat.
They'll be comfortable with a
vegetarian diet in the future," ·
said Vegetarian Society com-
munications manager Stephen
Conner. A majority of parents
agreed veggie tikes can be as
healthy as carnivorous kids.
HOTEL SHAMAN
Hold the Rain
.
i\ T THE BALI FOUR SEASONS
J=\resort, baJ.1ans, Hindu
priests/shamans, are contracted
for a $100 fee to prevent rain
during large outdoor rvents.
The "rainstopper," as the West-
ern hotel execs call him, returns
the fee in the event of rain. At
least he would. So far, the hotel
has 'never had to ask for a rei
fund. "When someone is plan-
ning a $10,000 event," said the..:
hotel manager, "they dOI\t wor-
ry about an extra $100 to guar-
, antee them good weather."
Balian, Nuratmadja, at work
The Abhinay School of Dance
of New Delhi, India
will present:
Nadopasana
"Worship Through Music"
(An integrated Cultural
Heritage of India)
Nrithya Roopam
"Evolution Of Dance Form"
(A dance feature)
Bharatham
(Special feature on the
50th year of independence)
Dancers
• Jayalakshmi Eshwar (Kalakshethra)
• Nitya Ramachandran • Gayathri Shrinivasan
• Swathi Biswas • Smitha Sheshadri
• Piyomori Mehta
Musicians
• Vocal: O.S. Sridhar • Mridangam: Bejanki Krishna
• Violin: K.L.N. Sastry • Flute: G. Raghuraman
Sponsored by India Circle (a not-for-profit organization
based in Central Texas). The itinerary is still being devel-
oped. For scheduling and inquiries, please contact:
P.K. Nair, 820 M Way, Salado, Texas 76571-9352 USA.
Tel: 817-947-1720. Fax: 817-947-1820. E-mail: pnair@vvm.com
We offer a wide selection of
Sri Chinmoy's inspirational
and instructional written
works, including essays,
poetry, plays and extensive
answers to questions asked
by seekers.
Music includes soul-stirring
audio and video perform-
ances by Sri Chinmoy and his
students on instruments from
allover the world.
Just published-
Sri Chinmoys long-awaited
trilogy, Commentaries on the Vedas, the Upanishads and the
Bhagavad Gita: The Three Branches of India's Life-Tree
and a 4-CD set of selections from Sri Chinmoy's fifty Peace
Concerts offered in honor of the 50th anniversary of the
United Nations.
Call or write for our free catalog!
Heart-Light Distributors
PO Box 85464-H
Seattle, WA 98145-1464 USA
Tel: 800-739-2885 or 1-206-527-2099
Fax: 1-206-527-2099
Moneesh Gifts and Books
• Religious Books: Hinduism, Sikhism, Buddhism, Jainism,
Judaism, Islam, Christianity and other modern faiths.
• Religious Statues: wood, stone, metal, crystal-l in. to 5 ft.
• Pooja Items: incense, dhoop, floral oils, beads and malas.
• Clothing: kurta pyjama sets, silk saris and punjabi sets, pooja
clothes, wool shawls, cotton, rayon and silk prayer shawls.
• Natural Remedies: homeo, bach flower, vitamins, ayurvedic
and herbal preparations, massage oils and and more.
• Posters and Pictures: posters and calendars of deities, all sizes.
• And much, much more • Mail Order Inquiries welcome.
Free Catalog: Moneesh • 467 Brickman Rd., Hurleyville,
NY 12747 USA • Tel: 914-434-8990 • Fax 914-436-5878.
The Path of Love
Several spiritual masters offer ways
of enhancing and perfecting our
love, enabling us to experience a
gentle, serene power abiding in our
own hearts. 122 pages.
ISBN 1-880687-10-0
US$lO plus $3.75 postage.
Tel: 215-396-0390 or 888-269-7323
http://www.chinmaya.org/publications
Chinmaya Publications
560 Bridgetown Pike
Langhorne, PA 19053-7210 USA
Roy Eugene Davis,
a widely-traveled teacher,
author and direct disciple of
Paramahansa Yogananda,
has taught in the kriya yoga
tradition for more than four
decades.
Request information about
his books and classes in the
USA, India, Europe and
other countries.
Center for Spiritual Awareness
P.O. Box 7-H
Lakemont, Georgia
30552-0007 USA
Tel: 706-782-4723 • Fax 706-782-4560
http://web.infoave.netl-csainc • E-mail csainc@stc.net
In India:
A Master Guide to Meditation (Rs. 55)
The Book of Life (Rs. 65) by Mr. Davis.
Motilal Banarsidass
41 U.A., Bungalow Road
Jawahar Nagar, Delhi 110 007
• Offices and stores also in Patna, Bangalore, Madras,
Varanasi, Calcutta and Pune.
If by mail, add Rs. 15 each book for postage.
Sri Lanka Report
THE ARTICLE ("SRI LANKAN TAMILS TELL
T!j.les of a Desperate Diaspora," COVER
RY', April '97) is the most
that I have read. The article is sensitively
written, very educational and. constitutes a
valuable reference.
I
- AMBIKAIPAKAN BALASUBRAMANIAM
CINCINNA'f!, OHIO, USA
....Ambi.bala@UGEdu
YOUR COVERAGE OF THE TAMIL REFUGEES
is brilliant. The Refugee Council in London
has published a report which may interest
your readers called, "Protection denied: Sri
Lankan Tamils, the Home Office and the
Forgotten Civil War." This report follows a
199&-fact -finding mission to the country by
a Council delegation. The report calls on the
UK government to show a humanitarian atti-
tude towards Sri Lankan asylum seekers.
Copies are availablej"rom Katharine Knox at
(44) 171-820-3038 in London.
RAKESH MATHUR
LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM
It Took Courage
A DOUBLE CONGRATULATIONS AND COM-
mendation: one for your new layout and
second for your publisher's article ("Spare
the Rod and Save the Child," PUBLISHER'S
DESK, February condemning corporal
punishment. Both took ·courage and in-
sight, and I applaud them!
- I
CHRISTOPHER LARGENT
DELAWARE, USA
Recalling Ramana
YOUR RECENT ARTICLE ABOUT-SRI RA-
mana Maharishi is superb (Ramana Ma-
harshi and His Teaching of "Who Am I,"
SAGE OF ARUNACHALAM, March '97). Many
are those who revere Maharshi and who
seek Self-Knowledge-Jnana-entirely free
of t1;).e concepts and remoteness which are
sometimes erroneously associated with
this clear wisdom. His s"imple, yet pro-
found, methociof Self-inquiry ("Who am
I?") and the showing that the abidance as
That is, indeed, our natural state are in-
valuable for those who yearn for deep
peace and lasting happiness.
MASTER NOME
SOCIETY OF ABIDANCE IN TRU:rH
CALIFORNIA, USA
Singing Calypso's Praise
I SEE PERSONALLY NO CONTROVERSY IN
teaching Kaiso (Calypso) to Hindu children
in Trinidad and Tobago. Both East Indian
and Afro-Caribbean cultures have been
rather blendeCI. in T&T for ages, especially
in the recent years. Thus Calypso, despite
its being thought of as strongly rooted only
14 Hi NDUISM TODAY JUNE, 1997
LETTERS
in Africari culture, has, in my opinion, re-
ceived a lot of influence from the East Indi-
an culture and arts and also from other cul-
tures. The influence is seen in the lyrics,
language, music, instruments and in the
race of the artists. All of it is Trinidadian
culture and should be appreciated by all Tri-
nis as well as foreigners.
MIKA
HELSINKI, FINLAND
"jansson@cc.helsinki.fi
Something Is Missing
I'M AN 18-YEAR-OLD STUDENT FRQM THE
University of Natal-Durban. The price of
your magazine almost tripled over the
newspaper format. I, along with many oth-
ers, am no longer able to afford it. How can
you just suddenly increase the price of a
religious magazine which is meant' be ac-
cessible to almost every Hindu? The old
format was very nice and reasonably priced.
It had quotes from our scriptures at the bot-
tom of each page which the new one seems
to be lacking.
,,-
V. MOODLEY •
DURBAN, SOUTH AFRICA
.... MOODLEYVI7@S?IFS1.U.,ND.AC.ZA
V We have added a Vedic verses section
each.issue in Diaspora.
Are Tamils Hindus?
THERE IS A MISCONCEPTION IN SOUTH
Africa [and Mauritius, tool that there is an
indigenous difference between Hindus and
Tfunils. Tamils are Hindus who speak the
language Tamil. Hindus, therefore, ..may
speak any language, be it Tamil, Hindi, Tel-
ugu, Gujarati, Kannada, English, etc. The re-
ligion of the Hindus is Hinduism. A person
who speaks Tamil may belong to Hinduism
or to another religion.
KRISHNASWAMI R. GOVENDER
GREYTOWN, SOUTH AFRICA
Fiir from Home
A NEPALI MYSELF, LIVING VERY FAR
from my homeland, is very glad to see that I
can count on HINDUISM TODAY to be in-
formed of Nepalese news every once in
- awhile (article on Himalayas).
,,-
KlAN DHUNGANA, EDITOR, DrYAW
(A NEPALESE COMMUNITY NEWS MAGAZINE)
15 FOXACRE ROW, BRAMPTON,
ONTARIO, L6v 3v7 CANADA
Movies Worse than Pageant
INDIAN MOVIES ARE MUCH MORE PROVO-
cative than most Hollywood No one
is forcing women t9 enter beauty pageants,
("Bangalore Battlefield," COVER STORY,
March '97), nor people to attend or support
them. With so much ignorance about birth
cOJltrol, poverty and pollution in India, these
beauty pageant protesters ought to be pro-
plOting birth control, helping the needy and
cleaning up unsanitary public facilities.
HENRY KARNILOwICZ
CALIFORNIA, USA,
Make it Appealing
WE FEEL NEWMAGAZINE WILL HELP
Hindus and non-Hindus transcend the nega-
tive poverty-stricken image of Hinduism that
most Westerners seem to have-dirty, weird-
looking people with greasy, stringy hair in
weird-looking, messy dothing (or the la& of
it), who are worshiping snakes, stones, rivers
or other incomprehensible symbols because
they were presented without an explanation
of their deepest significance. Giving Hin-
duism the face it deserves is of ' the utmost
importance. The Hindu image must be raised
to the level that Westerner's have for Bud-
dhism and Buddhist monks: welcoming, and
defInitely not weird. Only then, we believe,
will Westerners find Hinduism appealing.
SHRI GURUDEVI SWAMI SAVITRIPRIYA
SHIVA-SHAKTI ANANDA ASHRAM
JALISCO, MEXICO
Some Things to be Proud of
THE SADHUS IN SARANGPUR VERY MUCH
recall the visit and talk of Satguru Sivaya-
Subramuniyaswami in which Swamiji re-
ferred to the center as the largest training
center for Hindu sadhus anywhere. We use
your magazine to inform our sadhus on
ways to implemeIl:> our Hindu teaching in
young generations minds in _ foreign coun-
tries. The London Swaminarayan temple
and the Akshardham complex in India have
been grand successes in bringing people
closer to Hinduism.
-
SADHU CHAITANYAMURTIDAS
AKSHARPURUSHOTTAM SWAMINARAYAN TEMPLE
AHMEDABAD, INDIA
....Corrections
V Bagmati riverphotpgraph, page 12, April
'97, was by Thomas L. K.elly. ....
V The correct home page address of Sri B.a-
mana Maharshi's ashram in India is httrJ:I/
www.nanet.comJramanalindex.htm •
Letters with writer's name, address and daytime
phone number, should be sent to:
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KAPAA, HI, 96746-9304 USA
or faxed to: (808) 822-4351
or e-mailed to:
letters@HlnduismToday.kaual.hl.us
Letters may be edited for space and clarity and may
appear in electronic versions of HINDUISM TODAY.
.... INDICATES LETTERS RECEIVED VIA E-MAIL
Books by Swami Shankar
Purushottam Tirtha:
Yoga Vani
Instructions for the attain-
ment of Siddhayoga during
sadhana.
postpaid: US$13.50 (USA)
$16.50 (Canada)
Guru Bani
100 ways to attain inner
peace. How to live a spiritual
life-for monks and families.
postpaid: US$9.50 (USA)
$12.50 (Canada)
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catalog: $1.00 (free via e-mail) • Consultations. I-year
Ayurveda Certification Courses in person or by correspon-
dence (US mail, or e-mail).
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TeVfax: 1-516-628-8200 • Ask for Swami Sada Shiva Tirtha
E-mail: ayurvedahc@holistic.com
Web: httpllwww.holistic.comllistingsl11709acl.html
(Free interactive dosha self-test and articles)
Nestled in the foothills of the
rain-drenched coastal range
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the world's fInest chai. Pure
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We have four unique blends:
• Sattwa Sun: a classic blend
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black tea such as you might
drink at a fIne Indian restaurant -if you get lucky.
• Kovalam Spice: like the "Sun" only blended for more fIre.
• Shanti Herbal: Sattwa's natural caffeine-free chai. The
same wonderful spices with a pinch of Northwest pepper-
mint, chamomile and fennel. Great evening tonic.
• Choco Chai: to the traditional Sattwa spices we've added
our own proprietary pure chocolate base.
Cost: Four-pack with 20 servings/box just U8$25.00, (includes
, shipping). 1 and 5 lb. bulk quantities available at substantial
savings. Pre-blended and easy to make.
For orders and free brochure call toll free 1-888-841-CHAI.
Fax: 503-538-5125 (USA). Email: sattwachai@aol.com.
The tea that stirs the maker.
Ganapati sitting (or dancing), Ram
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Durga, Shirdi Sai Baba, Hanuman,
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Shiva Nataraj, Krishna, Krishna with
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to $39.95. $3.50 shippg. Catalog.
Discounts for retailers and temples.
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NY 10916 USA. Tel: 1-800-374-2304
or 1-914-294-1498 • Fax 914-294-3870.
Pooja, Devotional and Wedding Items
Pre-packaged items for
havans • Religious statues
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tagar, bhojaptra, lotus
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Fax: 510-793-7026
Pooja
International
seed • Men's, children's kurta, pajamas, sari blouses, sari falls
and petticoats, children's clothes • Jaintri and Panchang •
1997 shipment from India just arrived • Ask for list of items .
• Prompt delivery • M.Card, Visa, Am.Ex credit cards OK.
By Swami Tejomayananda.
An optimum blend of spirit-
ual, cultural and personal
experience. Experienced
teachers offer the essence of
Hindu scripture at all levels:
adult, youth, and children.
• Bhagavad Gita
·Shrimad Bhagavat
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Family Camps:
July 27-Aug 3
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Aug 11-17
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810-732-0288
604-433-3441
408-998-2793
Vedanta for spiritual growth • Values for lasting happiness.
TalkslJnana Yagnas:
July 7-11 Buffalo, NY
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July 19-25 Washington, DC
Chinmaya Mission West • Krishnalaya
PO Box 129, Piercy, CA 95587-0129 USA
Tel: 707-247-3488 • Fax: 707-247-3422
http://www.chinmaya.orglevents
716-633-1633
416-663-6553
301-384-5009
Shri Anandi Ma-Master in
the tradition of Kundalini
Maha Yoga, will be offering
public meditation programs in:
• Woodbury, Connecticut:
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Tel: 203-598-3323
• Boston, Massachusetts:
June 6 & 7.
Tel: 617-491-4091
• New York, New York:
June 27 & 28.
Tel: 212-877-7339
Shaktipat initiation will be offered by appointment each
weekend. "With Shaktipat, the student is saturated with
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1y awakened and, like a mother, constantly cares for and
nourishes her infant. One may be of any religion, caste, or
creed to benefit; for all persons, the field of inner joy is the
same. After Shaktipat, the Shakti will take the student to the
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Spiritual experiences of Swami
Sivananda Radha
by Julie McKay
Through the stories of Radha
and Krishna, the author relates
the story of Swami Radha's
love affair with the Divine.
By bringing these two realities
together, she allows us to see
the potential for each person
with a desire to focus on
hislher spiritual path. This
book confirms that this
search is not in vain. Julie
McKay, a student of Swami
Radha since 1979, worked closely with her for seven years
until Swami Radha's death in November, 1995. It was this .
mate contact that allowed her to write this very personal story.
"This is a charming, stirring and elevating love song within a
love song .. . a modern Gita Govinda."-Georg Feuerstein, PhD,
author of Structures of Consciousness
Limited edition: cloth, ribbon bookmark, photos, US$35.00.
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PO Box 3543, Spokane, WA'99220-3543 USA
Tel: 800-251-9273 • Tel/fax: 509-838-6652
Sotheby's
Illicit'.lndla.
Artifacts
Re'porter exposes .
auction house antics
EJ.LEVISION AUDIENCES IN THE UK
and the USA watched in amazement as
Roeland Kollewijn of the Sotheby's auc-
tion' house casually advised an under-
coven reporter on film she'd get more money
for an old Italian painting in England than in
Italy. He not only recommended she smuggle
it-it is a crime in Italy fo remove a painting
of that age-he offered to.do it for her aRd to .
arrange for Sotheby's to pick it up in London.
The reporter, part of an elaborate sting oper-
ationlengineered by a TV station and British
art journalist Peter .. Watson, accepted the il-
licit offer. 1fie painting was smuggled to Lon-
don, picked up by Sotheby's and auctioned.
This was not a chance piece of entrap-
ment. Watson had received,several boxes of
documents filched from Sotheby's by a dis-
gruntled employee over a period of several
years. The documents indicated a regular
trade by ,Sotheby's in stolen or illegally ex-
ported antiquities· from not only Italy but
.. many other c<'luntries-notably India. Five
years of investigation by Watson resulted in
the TV program and a just-published book,
Sotheby's, Inside Story. The dust jacket de-
scribes the contents: "The international auc-
tion .h<'luse Sotheby's has an unparalleled rep-
utation as the world's premier dealer in art
and antiquities .... However, in these pages
Peter Watson tells the story of his investiga-
tion into Sotheby's and his discovery of prac-
tices that include: .the facilitation of smug-
gling; the sale of antiquities known to have
been stolen from tombs; the rigging of auc-
tions by 'chandelier bidding,' .. . "
The book does not disappoint, and Hin-
dus will find chapter ten, "The Men from
Bombay," the most compelling. "Everyone
who worked in [Sotheby'sl antiquities was
well aware of the degree of that
went on from India," writes Watson. "Sothe-
. by's regularly travelled to India under
cover, pretending to be on holiday or writing
a book" Watson managed to actually meet
Mr. Fakrou Sham who, with his family, fiGt
only freely admitted on hidden camera that
he smuggled antiques illegally out of India,
he proudly pointed out such items
India's treasures: Peter Watson in Lokhari village, India, inspects Diety left behind by
looters. Alroost certainly smuggled Kushan coltl:mn was sold by Sotheby's in 1996.
listed in Sotheby's auction catalog. Asked
how the objects were gotten out of India,
Watson was told, "The diplomatic bag." Wat-
son goe,s on, "The Shams took their time
amassing a great many objects-a whole
container load-and then sent them out,
perhaps when a diplomat ;"as moving
house." Another method was to pack true
antiques along with recently-made decora-
tive fakes and ship them out of India.
Watson's team later inspected the Sham's
material in London, six'to seven rooms with
thousands of Indian· artifacts, one "chock-a-
block" with items of museum quality, most of
them from temples. The affable Watson ex-
to HINDUISM TODAY by phone that it
is a crime to take such antiques out of India,
but it is not a crime to bring them into Eng-
land. Even so, if an object is deemed to have
been illegally acquired, then British law re-
gards it as stolen property anB title to it can-
not be passed by auction or any other means.
If the object is located, Inaia could demand
its and the buyer would have to sue
the auction house to get his money back
The investigative TV report and book
have attracted attention in India, and one Mr.
Pande of India's Revenue Intelligence was in
London to meet with Watson the day we
called him. Watson is handing over to Pande
102 pages of Sothebys documents which re-
fer to India. Pande is especially interested in
retrieving one object mentioned in the TV
program. 'The "Goat-Headed Goddess" had
been stolen from the village Lokhari and sold
by Sotheby's at auction in 1988. an emo-
tionally touching scene the distraught village
headman identified on camera the stolen
Goddess in the auction catalog.
The case of SotheQYs and India is far from
over, and rep<'lrts are the auction
house is pulling back from the in-
ternational antiquities market, as
so much of the material coming
from any country for auction is of '
questionable origin. There are
. "
more profitable and less contro-
versial areas to focus on, such as
the sale of Old Masters paintings
(e.g. Van Gogh). India meanwhile
has arrested the Shams in Mum-
bai. Watson.,said a proper expert
could review' all of Sotheby's auc-
tion catalqgs for the last decades
which are available at the British
Museum and in two days deter-
mine what and how much has
been illegally taken out of India.
Sotheby's denies corporate culpa-
bility and blames t he incidents on
a few rogue employees. Roeland
Kollewijn, for one, lost his job.
JUN E , 1 9 97 HINDUISM TODAY 17
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HI.,NDUS WILL HELP Britain celebrate the year
2000 in a very Hindu way. The London
Millennium Committee is considering a
£10 million grant 'to the SWaIDinarayan
Hindu Mission in Neasdon for a center cel-
ebrating different world cultures. A £25
million bid by the Hinduja Foun.'Q.ation for
ll,)TIulticultural center in Petersborough is
also under consideration. '
VEDIC MANTRAS and sweet-smelling incense
filled the air at #10 Janpath, the official
New Delhi addTess of the Gandhis, as
Priyanka Gandhi, daughter of the late
Prime Minister
Rajiv, was wed
to Robert Vadra,
a New Delhi
businessman.
She wore a
South Indian
temple sari
'.
"
which belonged Vadra anq. Priyanka
to her grand-
mother, the late Prime Minister Indira
Gandhi. The two-hour ceremony was con-
ducted.in traditional Kashmiri Pandit style.
THE AMARNATH PILGRIMAGE will be holy but
regulated this year. The Jammu and Kash-
mir state government, hoping to prevent a
recurrence of last year's tragedy, when 250
pilgrims to the-16,00o'-foot Himalayan cave
shrine died in snowstorms, has accepted
the recommenQations of a review commit-
They will install modern weather fore-
casting equipment, restrid the pilgrimage
period to 30 days, the ages of pilgrims to
between 15 and 65 years and the number
of pilgrims to a daily rate of 8,000 and a
maximum of 100,000 total.
PHYSICISTS AND VEDANTISTS
agreed at a New Delhi conference on "Yoga
in Daily Life" that matter originates from
consciousness-.not the other way around.
Dr. Amit Goswami of the University of
Oregon said such a paradigm resolves the
wave-particle duality. "If we take the
monistic view of consciousness as the
perennial philosophy of the Upanishads,
the paradoxes of quantum mechanics are
resolved," he said.
TIRUMALA'S famed and revered Tirupati
temple for Lord Venkateswara recently set
a record for a single day's hundi offerings,
surpassing the half-crore rupee mark. The
US$140,000 eclipsed their old recorn by
more than us$40,000.

20 aINDulsM TODAY JUNE, 1997
BUDDHISTS WANT HINDUS TO HAND OVER con-
trol of the Mahabodhi temple in Bihar, site
of the Buddha's enlightenment. Anything
less, they say, is drawing the promise of a
"do or die" agitation from Buddhist monks
throughout India to "emancipate" their
most sacred shrine. '"
THE DEATH TOLL rises in Sri Lanka, even as
boat loads of Tamils seek escape to India. A
fishing trawler carrying 150 refugees flee-
ing from advancing government soldiers
capsized in the Mannar sea, killing 130,
mostly women and children, according to a
statement from the Tamil Tigers faxed to
Reuters. Sri Lanka's military denied the
refugees were fleeing from troops.
"
ITALY IS COUNTERING illegal immigration by
increasing patrols along its southern coast.
One hundred and ten Sri Lankans and Pak-
istanis were intercepted from a Honduras-
flagged ship; 20 others in dinghies had al-
ready reached the beach near the city of
Reggio CalabFia. Italy's southern coast and
Lampedusa, an island Sicjly and
North Africa, are favorite targets for would-
be iU1lYiigrants bound for Italian or other
European cities.
IT'S "CASE CLOSED"
now for the Hare Kr-
ishna community of
New Vrinda:ban,
West Virginia. Crim-
in'al racketeering
charges, and a pos-
sible $21-million in Palace of Gold
fines, were settled
for $10,000: The community was also set-
tling with the US Government over proper-
ty seized during a 1987 federal raid, which
equal that amount, so the fine "won't
set us back very far," said Nityotita Swami.
"GAUTAM BUDDHA, Mahavira, Jesus Christ
and Kalki?" That is how The Indian Ex-
press began a recent report on the fast
growing Kalki movement. "Has'Cod ar-
rived? So believe five millIon people in
. dia alone ..." the report continues. The Kalki
Yagnas fuust, headquartered near Chennai,
says there are now Kalki centers worldwide.
The report questions the fast growing san-
nyasd order, and whether youth between 15
and 25 years of age. are being '1ured away
from bright academi'c and professiO'nal ca-
reers to join the trust and lead a life of re-
nunciation." In Hindu mythology, Kalki is
the and yet-to-arrive, avatar or in-
carnation of Lord Vishnu.
SADLY, South Asian women in the USA "are
,especially vulnerable to abuse due to their
cultural socializatioI'l and
recent immigration,"
writes Shamita Das Das-
gupta, PhD, representa-
tive of Manavi, a
communitx-based
agency founded in
1985 in New Jersey. Helping wOl1wn
Dedic;ated to serving "
tne needs of battered women of Southeast
Asia, the latest achievement of this pioneer-
,ing outreach and counseling agency is the
establishment of a transitional home and
refuge to be known as Ashiana, meaning
"nest." Contact: Manavi, PO Box 2131,
Union, New Jersey 07083-2131 USA.
COSMIC FORECASTERS predict milder
weather for the solar system over the next
decade, meaning cooler Earth tempera-
tures, fewer power surges and blackouts
and less disruption of global communica-
tions. The mild forecast is based on de-
creased sunspot activity resulting in de-
creased magnet.ic storms, cosmic rays and
disturbances in Earth's ionosphere. The
sun's magnetic activity waxes and wanes in
ten-year cycles. The latest, which began in
September, 1996, is predicted to be the
mildest in the last 50 years.
A CORRESPONDENT OF The Hindu reported
the following harroynng tale to her newspa-
per editor. She had just applied for her
child's admission in a Catholic school. The
principal said her daughter would be con-
sidered if she were to bring in 10 Hindu
families to be converted. "Difficult to be-
lieve, isn't it?" asked the Chennqi newspa-
per's editor, who lamented the "total indif-
ference of many teachers toward their
young wards."
/
'THE EXPANSION OF throughout
the world is not keeping pace witK-popula-
tion increases-a pattern that will continue
into the next century, reports Quadrant,
the newsletter of the London-based Christ-
ian Research Association. World
dom as a of the population has
decreased from 30% in 1960 to 28% in
1@95 and is proje(:ted to decline to 27% 9Y
2010, according to latest projections.
BRIEFLY is compiled from press, TV and
tyire-service reports and, edited by RAYI
PERUMAN, award-winning radio journalist
at KGG in San Francisco.
CLOCKWISE FROM TOP: MANAVI, NEW VRINDABAN, NEERAJ PAULITIMES OF INDIA
Among Vidyas, Vedas are supreme,
In Rudram issupreme.
In Rudram, the Panchakshari
"Namassivaya" is supreme.
And in the two syllables
"Siva" are supreme.
Sponsorship Schedule
Items 14 are both and COIporate Sponsorships
U.S.$ Indian Rupees
Grand Patron . . .......... 50,001 IS lakhs
Patron: Entire Yagnam
& Associated Events .......... 10,001
Grand Sponsor: 11 day
Rudra]apam, Abhishekam
& Homams .. . 5,001
Sponsor: One Priest from
India ..... .. 3,001
Final Day Rudra]apam,
Abhishekam & Homam ...... 1,001
Veda Parayanam (all 4 Vedas)
& other Parayanams .... . SOl
Rudra Homam ............ 251
Swama (gold) Sambhavana
to One Priest.. ... . lSI
Vastram, Ganapati Homam,
Navagraha Homam, Avahanti
Homam, Mrityunjaya
Homam, Lalita Homam,
Sri Sukta Homam .. 51
3.01akhs
1.5lakhs
1.0lakhs
30,001
10,001
7,001
5,001
1,001
Contributions to SVBFare fax-deductible
in the USI.
Prasadamwill be mailed within two weeks
after the conclusion of the yagnamfor
sponsors who cannot attend the yagnam.
Sringeri Vidya Bharati Foundation Inc. USA • Sringeri Sadhana Center invites you to the
Athi Rudra Maha yagnam
Conducted for the first time outside India
Sringeri Sadhana Center
RD 8, Box 8116, Stroudsburg, PA 18360 USA · Tel: 717-629-7881, 1-800-4SHINDU
Dr.s.
Contributions in US dollars may be made
payable to SVBF - Athi RudramAccount.
Please mail checks to our registeredoffice:
Sringeri Vidya Bharati Foundation
Silverline Corp. Plaza, 53 Knightsbridge Rd.
Piscataway, NJ 08854, USA
Donations in Indian rupees will be
acceptedand usedfor priest expenses and
sambbavanas and the purchase of puja
itemsfrom India. Please mail your checks
or bank drafts, payable to:
Sri Sharada Peetham, Sringeri
Sri V. R. GOwrishankar,
Administrator, Sringeri SharMa Pee/bam
Sringeri - 577 139, Karnataka, INDIA
71Jis Yagnam is the higbeslfOlm of Rut/ra Yagnam wi/b 14641
recitations of Sri Rut/"am & 1331 Rudra Homams.
I
MEDICAL ETHICS
a
/
'\
A UK laboratory clones a sheep, unleashing
a worldwide furor over the ethics of genetic
research and the specter of duplicating humans
N JULY 1996 A BLACKFACE EWE
gave birth to lamb 6LL3, an out-
wardly normal baby sheep, at the Ros-
lin Ins,titute's genetic research facility
in Edinburgh, Scotland, In the Feb-
ruary 27, 1997, issue of lYature mag-
azine, Roslin's chief researcher Dr.
Ian Wilrnut stutined the world when he an-
that 6LL3 (now named Doily, after
American country singer Dolly Parton) was
the first successfully cloned mammal.
Wilmut was summoned to the British Par-
liament, and later tO,the US Senate. He in-
formed alarmed committees on both sides
of the Atlantic that he foresaw no particular
obstacle to the cloning of humans-the cre-
ation,of a genetic duplicate of another per-
son. -Shocked politicians realized Wilmut's
accomplishment coupled with advance-
ments in genetic engineering could alter the
future of the human race in a manner not
seen since the discovery of atomic energy.
A clone is a genetic duplicate of another
organism. Its only natural occurrence in hu-
mans is identical twins, in whi,ch each share
tIre same DNA and thus develop physically
into nearly identical people. a few
years, predicts Wilmut, cloning humans will
be a very real possibility. Why would we do
it? There are many reasons, some wonderful,
some unquestionably immoral. A women
whose husband and child died in a car acci-
dent could replace the child by cloning. It
has been seriously proposed to clone people
to serve as a spare parts depot from which to
replace failing hearts or kidneys. Cloning
may .be possible with the long dead, too. We
could unwrap mummified Egyptian King
22 HINDUISM TODA.Y J l.\,N E , 1997
Tut and make a new copy of him, or of Ein-
stein, or of the 5,000;year-old Stone Age man
found frozen in the Alps-even revive
mastodons. We could take a piece of Bud-
dhas. molar from the Temple of the Tooth in
Kandy, Lanka, and recreate the physical
body (Mlough not the enlightened soul) of
Gautama Buddha. We couln take locks of
hair preserved from saints, or dig up samad-
hi shrines where they are entombed.
The prospects get scary when cloning is
combined with genetic engineering (the ac-
tual intent of Wilmut's research witn sheep).
DNA could be taken from a person, cus-
tomized with genes for disease resistance,
intelligence, beauty and then grown into a
baby. The PE?rfect musician or the 'creative
genius could' be ordered up by calculating
parents to be-9s could be the perfect un-
questioning soldier or murderous sociopath
by the less altruistic.
The territory is so new that world leaders
are in an ethical void on what to think about
it. A host of questions are suddenly being ad-
dressed by scientists, politicians, philosophers
and religious leaders. After Wilmuts announce-
ment, US President Clinton forbaQ.e any fed-
eral research on human cloning pending for-
mal review by the' US National Bioethics
Commission-a significant part of which is to
solicit opinions of the world's religions.
Most religious leaders, including Hindu,
are opposed to cloning humans. Many con-
sider it "playing God" and therefore wrong.
Others question the necessity for another
way to make people at a time when we have
too many people. Putting these opinions in
perspective requires a certain amount of
technical background I as to exactly what
cloning .is, how it was Itccornplished and
where genetic engineering fits in.
Every cell a blueprint: It has long been
known that each cell contains thy complete
DNA genetic code, unique to that organism.
However, in the growth process, as cells be-
come specialized, parts of the DNA code are
i'turned off," so t]J.at muscle cells make only
new muscle cells, brain cells new brain qells
ar,td so on. Before this discovery there was no
way to make a muscle cell spawn a brain cell,
even though the genetic code to do ,so was
present. Many plants ' are different. Their
cells are abfe to reprogram themselves. That's
why we can take a branch cutting from a
tree, plant it and have a complete new tree, a
clone, develop. The first cloned animals were'
tadpoles (in 1952), but the results were par-
tial and no adult frogs developed. Scientists
thought cloning a mammal would rf1quire an-
other half century of research. They reck-
oned the most likely way was to replace the
DNA at the very first stage of growth, in the
egg, but had no idea how to accomplish it.
Wilmut's group solved this dilemma with
masterful ingenuity. Harvesting and isolat-
ing egg from an adult female sheep
already been done. In fact, tlie technique is
used reliably in humans for in vitro fertiliza-
tion-"test-tube babies." The second step
was removing the DNA-containing nucleus
of the egg. Then came the hard part. They
took a cell from the mammary gland of an
adult sl}eep and put it into a dormant state,
essentially by starving it. During dormancy,
they hoped, the cell would forget its mam-
mary identity and .be prepared to generate
an entire new organism, something that oc-
curs naturally only when the egg is fertilized
by a sperm cell. Wilmut used an electric
spark to "fuse" the dormant cell into the egg,
and, to the amazement of all, an embryo
started to develop. The embryo was placed
in a surrogate ewe-a process also perfected
in humans-and Dolly was b1?rn. Hello!
There are four individuals involved in the
. cloning: the donor (male br female) of the
DNA, the donor of the egg, the surrogate
mother and the clone. The clon.e is an identi-
cal DNA copy of the cell donor (and always
the same sex), ancf unrelated to either the egg
donor or its own birth mother. lt required
277 attempts to create Dolly. eggs failed
H8110,001ly
Meet Dolly, the first mammal cloned from an adult of
the species. With ingenuity and a tight budget, Dr.
Ian Wilmut of Scotlan"d (below) and a team of twelve
made the unexpected breakthrough resulting in Dol-
ly's birth in July, 1996, made public in February, 1997.
Religions condemned it and nations rushed to ban or
limit resyarch on human cloning. Proponents foresee
cures for thousands of genetically related diseases and
improvement of our race. Opponents fear uncontrolled
manipulation resulting in untold complications.
to de elop, others died during gestation, some
. were stillborn and others born alive but de.-
formed. Wilrnut himself opposes cloning hu-
mans, because at this stage researchers would
be faced with one success and 276 abortions,
stillbirths and deformed babies.
The discovery came cheap. Wilmut's team
of 12 managed it on a research grant of
US$500,600/year. That's far less than what
Nissan spends to develop next year's car
model, and mere lunch money compared to
the multiple bilJions spent developing the
atomic bomb or going to the Moon. Even
though the British government has t anceled
Wilmut's grant, private companies are rush-
ing to supply him money if he wants it.
DNA is Vut one factor, albeit an important
one, in determining the physical character-
. istics of a human. Studies on identical twins
raised separately reveal they will be, on av-
erage, within two inches of the same !;.eight,
ten pounds of the saine weight and six
points of IQ. Their fingerprints wil\ be sim-
ilar, but not identical. They'll have a remark-
able affinity for the same medical problems,
even communicable diseases. For example,
if one twin has diabetes the chances are
80% the twin will, too. Similar figures apply
for feeblemindedness, tuberculosis and even
criminality. This is vital to the prospect of
using cloning for organ transplants, because
a clone raised for "spare parts" is likely to
have the same weaknesses as the DNA
donor-be it heart, kidney or
Identical twins can be astonishingly similar
in even the smallest physical features, and
share many personality traits as well. One set ·
of tWins separated at birt!; in the USA was re-
cently reunited. Among a: long list of shared
traits, both had become firemen, both grew
moustaches, both held a beer glass with the
same peculiar grip and both had pet dogs-to
which they had given the same name! So far
there is no precedent for identical twins
growing up separated 'by time as well as
space, as would be t4e case with clones. It is
expected the different environment and as-
trological chart (see page 36) would result in
greater distinctions between donor and clone.
Genetically engineered perfection: Wil-
mut and associates did not develop cloning as
an end in itself Their main is to produce
genetically altered sheep whose milk con-
tains commercially profitable hormones for
JUNE , 1 9 97 H I'N DUISM TODAY 23
,
!
humans. one such sheep is successful-
ly made-a very difficult process-it can be
cloned again and again. are sim-
ilarly attempting to create animals that gen-
erate human clotting factor (to treat hemo-
phHiacs) and geneticruw altered pigs whose
organs could be transplanted into humans.
Reproduction by cloning holds the key to
genetic alterations to cure certain incurable
diseases. Before the donor nucleus is implant-
ed into an enucleated egg, its DNA can be al-
tered. By such "genetic engineering" some
4,000 incurable genetic diseases could theo-
retically be eliminated. But such cures are
not welcomed by all. The large deaf commu-
nity in the USA'has complained that if deaf-
ness is eliminated, their distinctive culture,
sign language and literature will disappear. If
clorung technology were perfected, made-to-
order, genetically engineered humans would
be the logical next frontier. 11. superhuman
could then be perpetuated by cloning it again
and again, just as Wilmut cloned Dolly.
Cloning from the Hindu view: Cloning in In-
dia took a wrong turn about 6,000 years ago
with the creation of Raktabija ("blood drop"),
a mytholOgical demon who appears in the
Markandeya Purana. Another of him sprung
from every dro.p of his blood spilled on the
battlefield. Only witll great effort were he
and his clones finally destroyed. More benign
results were . obtained by dozens of other
methods of asexual procreation found in the
vast scope of Hindu literature. for example,
Lord Ganesha was created from the skin of
His Mother and Lord Murugan by a spark
from Siva's third eye. Kunti conceived her
sons, the Pandavas, by means of mantras (sa-
cred formulas) offered to the Gods.
Even so, there is really no easily found
scripture directly ad<;lressing the practice of
cloning, just as there was no need for a Fed-
eral Aviation Agency before airplanes were
invented and started to crash. In Hinduism
and tJ1e other religions, endorsements or ob-
jectiC9ns to cloning are necessarily based
upon induction and extrapolation.
Hindus analyze cloning in Hindu terms-
karma, reincarnation, ahirnsa, all-pervasive ,
Divinity and soul's evolving nature-along
with the benefit or danger to society as a
whole. In a survey of seven Hindu leaders
conducted by HINDUISM TODAY [sidebar] , all
called strongly for strict regulation. Aeharyas
and swamis were unanimous th( t scientists
were in no way creating a soul by cloning, in
contrast to the Abrahamic belief that the
soul is created at ,conception. In the Hindu
view, the God-created soul' inhabits the
body, but is not the body. The question aris-
es: what kind of soul would take birth in a
body created so uniquely. At a gathering of
the American Association of Vedic Astrolo-
gers (AAVA) Chakrapani Ullal said religious
sanctification of marriage helps insure the
birth of high souls. Lacking such sanctifica-
24 HINDUISM TODA·Y J l\ NE , 1997
tion, he warned, "people born through clon-
ing will be fraught with problems." Speaking
from the view of ayurveda (II]-dia's tradi-
tional medicine), Dr. David Frawley (Va-
madeva Shastri) pondered, "You are trying
to have birth without prana [vital1ife ener-
gy]. What kind of creature is going to be
create/d without direct participation of the
pranic force?" Mrs. Ullal asked how a normal
being could be born from a "conception" de-
o void of love. The 2,000-year-old Tiruman-
tiram supports their wisdom, describing how
each embodied soul is influeI\ced by the
consciousness and energies of the parents
before and (luring coitus. Without these
pranas, life would certainly be different,
thbugh not all think negatively. Perhaps a
highlr-evolved soul would choose to take
such a passionless birth. Dr. M. M. Sankhd-
her, ex-professor of political Univer-
sity of Delhi offeryd: "To a Hindu, a cloned
human being, when this reality materializes,
would be another manifestation of a new
species as an outcome of the Divine Will." ;
Human Clanin 3
1. A single cell is taken
from the donor woman
(or man), for cloning.
2. The donor cell is
starved into a state of
quiescence in which it
stops reproducing on
its own.
3. An unfertilized egg is
taken from a second
woman and the genetic
nucleus is removed.
4. The enuc1eated egg is
kept alive in a test tube.
5. After 36 hours (for
sheep; humans may dif-
fer ), the donor cell is
fused into the egg with
®
an electrical spark
which also starts cell di-
vision. According to
Hinduism, an incarnat-
ing soul enters at this
point, drawn by its kar-
ma and by the con-
sciousness and karma of
iliose involved in ilie
conception.
6. For six days (in sheep)
the developing egg is
kept alive in a test tube.
7. If ilie embryo is grow-
ing normally, it is im-
planted in a surrogate
mother who carries it
to term and gives birili
normally.
8. The offspring is an ex-
act genetic duplicate of
ilie cell donor, and has
no genetic relationship
to ilie egg donor or to
ilie surrogate birili
moilier.
®
The research itself violates the tenet's of S
ah,irnsa, noninjuriousness. Several ofWilmut's
sheep, for example, were killed and autopsied :t ___________________ ; . _ ____________ __
by the researchers after their fetuses died. In
ayurveda, research on animals is allowed
only to benefit the animal. If human cloning
is permitted, deformed fetuses will certainly
be aborted as part of the larger process. Dr.
DeIll'lis Harness, of the AAVA, warned of po-
tentiall9ng-term problems, "Cloning involves
altering-energies on a very subtle level where
we don't even realize what we are doing."
Bhairava Sundaram Sivacharya, who be-
longs to an ancient lineage of Saivite priests,
said that Hinduism has always welcomed
new discoveries. He asks, "A soul is born
with a parabdha karma [the karma it is des-
tined to experience in this life]' When it lives
through the parabdha karma, that body will
die. Now if we take a cell from that b0dy and
make another man, do the parabdha'karmas
of the first man continue in some way? If so;
the original soul/cannot get released into the
next world upon the body's death. It will
bring a great confusion."
Several prominent swami leaders ques-
tioned the need for cloning in an overpopu-
lated world, where abortion of unwanted
children occurs daily. Rev. Swami Satchi-
dananda warned about unanticipated conse-
quences, the problem of "letting.:the genie
out of the bottle" and not being able to get it
back in. Many warned cloning would result
in the same havoc to society and the envi-
rorunent as have so many other scientific in-
ventions of the last few centuries.
In a joint statement, Dr. Ajit Ram Verma,
ex-director of the National Physical Lahora-
tory of New Delhi and Dr. I. S. Kothari, ex-
professor of physics, Delhi University, said,
"In an intelligent society, cloning could be
used for the betterment of the society. But
today decisions may be based on considera-
tions other than societys good. Therefore, re-
search in the field should be carefully con-
trolled." A poll of the US Hindu Students
Council concluded, "Hindus believe that
man is neither superior or infetior, but sim-
ply a part of nature as are the trees, animals,
and so on. By manipulating nature, we may
be upsetting natural and spiritual balances."
Pramukh Swami Maharaj observes that
Hindu Leaders on Cloning
Swami Satchldananda (In- -
tegral Yoga Institute):
What is the need for it? It
is simply scientific curios-
ity, and you know curiosi-
ty killed the cat. We may
think we are doing some-
thing good, but If it turns
up bad, then we don't have any control over It.
Tlruchi Mahaswamigal (Founder,
Ashram, India): It Is not new to our cultural
history of India. We did not call It cloning, but
there were other meth-
ods of procreation.
Presently we do not re-
quire any such alterna-
tive methods of procre-
ation for population, so
man need not develop
them.
o "Human cloning would mean a parentless ed on whether possible benefits outweigh
ilie risks. Some urge an outright ban;
call for close supervision. Mata Amritanan-
damayi said, "Historically, it is impossible
and unwise to interfere with the advance of
science." She and others call for a forum of
"spiritually aware and responsible people" to
advise industry and governments on
cloning. No one polled was willing to leave
the regulation to science .or business alone,
. society, full of sUl;rogate moiliers, careless
donors and, loveless children." He says a race
of clones might develop alongside the hu-
man race-with unknown consequences.
Clones may be regarded as less ilian human.
Genetic engineering raises other questions,
and Pramukh Swami quoted scriptures that
warn against introaucing' animal qualities in
man or vice versa. Hindu leaders are divid-
Pramukh Swami Ma-
haraj (Head, Swaml-
narayan Fellowship):
Mata Amrltanan-
damayl ("President
of Hinduism" at Par-
liament of the
World's Religions,
1993, Hindu of the
Year, 1993): The idea
of cloning, though im-
plemented only re-
Human cloning Is not
a matter of a few sci-
entists' research, a
few nations' decision
or a few leaders'
preference. The en-
tire humanity should
unite to control this crisis; future genera-
tions shall hold us responsible.
Swami Omkarananda Saraswati (Founder,
Omkarananda Ashram, Europe, India): Imag-
Ine, through millions of abortions around
the world, how many saints and benefac-
tors of mankind are destroyed! In the face
of this, how senseless and damaging to
spend money and God-given time trying to
produce unfortunate artificial copies of hu-
man beings. The aim of Creation Is to help
the creature not Into false channels, but
guide it into the world of knowing, loving
and being one with the Creator.
cently through modern SCience, was in the
minds of the ancient saints and sages of In-
dia. Man's attempts to change the natural
order of things has a long-term potential of
unexpected negative results. Forums of
spiritually aware and responsible people
can advise a prudent course of action.
,.
Paramhans Swami
Maheswarananda
(Founder, Sri Deep
Madhavananda
Ashram, Europe, In-
dia): This kind of ac-
tivity Is contrary to
ethical and moral
recognizing that the consequences impact
all of humanity.
Other religions react: Jewish Rabbi Ger-
shon Gewirtz said, "I think there are too
man/things we just don't understand. In my
view, the risk is just too great. " Roman Ca-
tholic Cardinal John O'Connor said, "Contra-
ry to the right of every human person to be
conceived and born within marriage and
from marriage, the clone is reduced to the
level of a product made rather than a person
begotten." Navajo Indians of the South-
west US hold the sheep in particular
sacredness, and complained that the scientist
desecrated the animal. Muslim scholar Ab- '"
dulaziz Aachedina, a medical ethicist at the
University of Virginia, worries about the
long-term implications of separating repro-
duction. from human relationship. "Imagine a
-world with no need for marriage," he invites.
Governments act: Malaysia and France re-
acted by banning human cloning. W Febru-
ary the ,US Senate considered a permanent
ban, and the research for this article will be
part of future deliberation. Seu.ator Tom Har-
kin protested any ban, defending the impos-
sibility of limiting human knowledge. ''What
npnsense. What utter, utter nonsense to think
that somehow we are going to hold up our
hands and say, 'Stop,' " he told his colleagues.
Cloning will not stop. It has been done for
a sheep. In a few years it will be done with
humans. Cloning may become as easy as or-
dinary reproduction, with profound conse-
quences on human society. For this reason,
and remembering we represent one-sixth of
the human family, all Hindus should take a
serious interest in this issue. ....I
prinCiples. Our beloved Master Bhagwan Sri
Deep Narayan MahaprabhiUi says, "Do not
go against the nature, or else It will take
revenge, and you will have to suffer the
consequences." Manipulating nature Is
greatly damaging our Holy Mother Earth.
Swami Chldanand
Saraswatl "Muniji"
(Head, Parmath Nlke-
tan, India): The egg
needs a waiting soul
to activate It and to
turn on the poten-
tialities In the genes
at proper times. It
would be unfortunate
if all persons looked like one another, God
Intends a rich variety. A lot of evil can re-
sult from human cloning. However the ex-
tension of knowledge should not be stopped.
Genetic engineering should go on under
strict conditions of global regulation with
Input from the different nations, races and
genders.
JUNE , 1 9 97 H I'ND U ISM IfODAY 25
,
i
ANDERING CROWDS OF CAM-
era-toting, pot-bellied tourists,
so essential to Nepal's fragile
economy, wear shorts and
clothes too tight for t h ~ essen-
tially conservative culture. They
crowd the temple-palace complex, the Ku-
mari Ghar, deep in the heart of Kathman-
du's Durbar Square, the oldest section of a
very old city. Everyone wants a glimpse of
the virgin girl Goddess. A tourist gUi.de yells
up tp the elaborate 18th century w00d-
carved windows of the second floor. Look-
ing like a Moghul miniature, the present Ku-
mari, a little girl no more than five, her eyes
blackened with kohl, the soot from a sacred
butter lamp, dressed in regal red, is carried
to the window·and solemnly peers down on
the gaping crowd without uttering a word.
"Was tbat her? 'That little girl?" A woman
with a sfrong New York accent questions in-
credulously. Lacking the knowledge to show
traditional devotion, the crowd brazenly
ogles her, like an exotic bird in the zoo. As
quickly as they look, she is withdrawn from
the window. Little do they or any Western-
ers really know about the inner life of the
Kumari-for ritually impure Westerners are
forbidden from her restricted quarters.
. Shrouded with t h ~ secrecy associated with
tantric rituals, taught from an early age that
a Goddess is to utter as few words as possi-
ble, the inner feelings of a Kumari remain as
mysterious and inaccessible to Westerners
as a statue made of stone.
Among the most ancient of Hindu prac- .
tices, Kumari puja (virkin worship) dates
back at least 2,300 years to the late Vedic
period. In essence it utilizes purity to call
• . fortI< the presence of powerful Deities for
direct offering of devotions. ill India, for ex-
ample, orthodox Hindu families worship
their unmarried daughters as the great Dur-
ga during the annual10-day Dashera festi-
val. But only in the Kathmandu Valley is Ku-
mari puja institutionalized in the form of
living Goddesses.
Not any girl can become a Kumari, whose
reign generally lasts about ten years, even if
she wanted to. Though Taleju is a Hindu de-
ity, the royal Kumari is always chosen from
the Newar Buddhist Sakya caste of gold-
smiths and silversmiths. The current line
trace their beginnings to an 18th century
Hindu king, Jayaprakasa Malla. According
to the story, the king was a worshiper of
Taleju, one of the many forms of Di.lrga
and protectress of the MallS:; royal lineage.
So ardent was his devotion that .from time
. to time She would enter his chamber in the
guise of a red serpent and then transform
Herself into a woman of radiant beauty.
One day, however, the king's thoughts to-
wards her took ~ libidinous turn, and for
punishment Taleju declared thereafter She
would only comnmne with him by inhabit-
must then make a clockwise cir-
cuit of the macabre display and
while doing so not betray any
sign of fear or stress.
The present royal Kumari was
chosen in 1991 at the tender age
of two. "She was screened by the
royal astrologer, many priests,
and the King's religious advisor," ,
her father Arnrit Sakya tells me.
She was also inspected by fe-
male attendants for the neces-
sa,;y "32 perfections" of a God-
dess. These include clear skin
with small pores, even teeth, .,
black hair and eyes, soft hands,
a moist tongue, no bad bodt
odors and "small and well-re-
cessed sexual organs." Most im-
portantly she must show no
signs of ever having bled, as
from a cut or nosebleed, for it
will be blood that will signify
the end of her reign as a living
Goddess. ...
Previous princess: Once granted any reasonable re-
quest, Rashmilla Sakya joins the everyday worl.d
Apart from her family, the lit-
tle girl Goddess has lived over
two years in isolation in the or-
nate, recently restored 18th cen-
ing the body of a young girl. With a twist
of divine i.rony, the girl She selected would
be from a local caste of Buddhists.
Hence, while Nepalese Hindus believe
the Royal Kumari to be a living embodiment
of Taleju, local Vajrayana Buddhists regard
her as their chief female deity Vajradevi- a
union of religious identities that subsequent-
ly assumes enormous significance in a coun-
try marked by sharp ethnic divisions .
TIle royal Kumari candidates, who are
generally 3 to 4 years of age, are screened by
a special committee comprised of Newar
and Hindu priests, the royal astrologer and
the kings religious adviser (raj guru). Once
their choice is made, the designee's horo-
scope is checked against the king's to assure
a positi;:e compatibility. Above all, the Ku-
mari must always exhibit the perfect com-
posUI;e of a true Goddess, and for this a fi-
nal, extraordinary test is administered.
The setting for it is kalratri ("black
night"), the anniversary of Durga's Puranic
slaying of the demon Mahisasur'a which
saved the primordial universe from evil.
Each year the event is reenacted with the
massive miGInight beheading of 108 water
buffaloes in the outer courtyard of an an-
. cient temple in Kathmandu known as Hanu-
man Dhaka. Shortly after the slaughter, the
Kumari-elect is brought to the courtyard en-
trance. Greeting her are neat rows of"uffa-
10 heads laid out on the ground with lighted
wickS/placed between their horns, the
paving'stones underfoot still glistening with
pools of fresh blood. As the selection com-
mittee looks on from a balcony, the little girl
tury Kumari Ghar. Her daily schedule
varies little. Attendants set her hair in a rit-
ual bun, her eyes are rimmed with kohl, ex-
tending like a Zen painters stroke to her
temples, while her forehead is distinctively
painted with a vermilion red, black and
golden all-seeing "fire-eye," and each day
she sits on her lion throne for two or three
hours. At this time a priest from the nearby
Taleju temple perforII}s a purification rite,
using objects said to cleanse eac4 of the five
sensory organs: flour for the ears, rice for
the mouth, incense for the nose, a lamp for
the eyes and red powder for touch. The Ku-
mari receives up to a dozen faithful devotees
every day. "Many people come to seE; the fu-
rnari," the Kumarima, a small elderly woman
explained. "Some come with medical prob-
lems, especially illnesses related to bleeding.
Many government officials visit, hoping her .
blessings will ensure pro;;notion."
She must remain solemn and silent,s itting
cross-legged in her gilt-canopied lion throne
while the line of worshipers shuffles
through her private chamber, each person
touching the floor with his or her head and
laying down offerings.,of money, fruit and
flowers. To her followers, every movement
the child makes is d.eemed a sign from the
Goddess Taleju. If she receives a petition in
unmoved silence, it will be fulfilled; should
she laugh, cry or rub her eyes, the supplicant
will fall ill or even die. Anita Sakya, now in
her early twenties, was th,e royal Kumari
seven years ago. Shy and reserved, as most
ex-Kumaris are known to be, she told me a
sad story. "I was just a little girl. Once an old,
JUNE , 1997 HINDUISM TODAY 27
sick man came to be blessed. He was so sick
he coughed and a touch of spit landed on
my toe. My attendants gasped. He died the
next day. I felt very sad: 1 believed 1 was re-
sponsible for his death."
For all the aura of power surrounding her,
the Kilmari appears to live a lonely existence.
Her only companions are the hereditary
the Brahmin priest and a dozen
Buddhist priests. She isn't taught to read or
write, and she has no playmates of her own
age. She lives a disciplined life adheFing to a
strict diet and up early every morn-
ing to spend a few hours at her
time as Kilmari. I love all the caretakers at
the Kilmari ghar mQre than my own family.
I still go and visit Kilmari and her attendants
almost every week."
A girl cannot stay a Kilmari forever. With
the first, shedding of blood, the Deity Taleju
leaves child's body, returning her once
more to the everyday worfd. In 1991, ten
days before the big Dasain Festival, micro-
phones announced that the reigning twelve-
year-old Kilmari would be replaced. "When
I began to menstruate, I didn't know what
was happening," Rashmilla, the last reigning
royal Kilmari shyly explained. She was wor-
shiped one last time in the company of the
neW' Kilmari, tnen her ornaments were re-
moved. She was led by the head priest,
twenty guardians and priests to her family
home which she would not remember.
devotions. Her original name and I
identity are forgotten. The
tells qer she is beyond joy and sor-
is now a Deity in hu-
man form. She is told that if she
weeps or laughs, the Deity may
leave her. Forbidden to go out in
sunlight, the silk-hung rooms are
her private sanctuary.
"When I was Kilmari, 1 would
look out the window at all the
cllildren playing. I wanted to play,
too," Dil Kilmari, a woman with:
graying hair whose childhood as
a living Goddess ended over forty
years ago, to me. "I
wanted to be like a butterfly imd
fly, down to join the playing chil·
cb;'en. I used to play stones and.
jacks by myself. When 1 was a
<Soddess, it was like that," she
lamented. Nani Maya, a Kilmari
over. twenty years ago, recalls, "I
have such fond memories of my
28 HINDUISM TODA.Y JU E, 1997
Once worshiped as divine, the youth must
quickly adapt to being treated as a normal
girl. After the customary four days in isola-
tion in a dark room with no sunlight, female
attendants of the TaleN temple undo the lit-
tle girl's hair bun and remove her last token
bangle, signifying the beginning of her life
Dharma Kumari
Having reigned longest, she is said to hold the real power
HARMA KUMARI BAJRA-
. charya has found per-
manent refuge and
safety. She has never
had to face adjusting to daily
life for she claims the goddess
Taleju has never left her. The
forty-five-year-old living God-
dess lives in the town of Patan
in a beautiful, traditional
Newar home with elab0fately
carved windows, small door-
ways and freshly painted,
clean mud floors. Like the
child Goddesses, Dharma Kil-
mari rarely speaks. So first 1
meet her mother, Siddhi Lax-
mi, a devout woman of seven-
ty-one. Unlike the royal Kil-
mari, the Patan Kilmari is
allowed to live at home and is
only taken to the Kilmari ghar
for ceremonies and festivals.
Siddhi Laxmi delicately fills
clay cups with home-brewed
rice liquor and tells me the
story of her daughter and the
controversy surrounding her.
"When she was a little girl, no
more than two, 1 found her in
her room playing with two
snakes: one red and one
low: She was two years old
when chosen Kilmari in 1953.
The astrologers predicted she
would reign longer than any
other Kilmari."
Neighborhood politics
boiled over three years ago
when a young girl was in-
stalled to formally replace her
as the ruling Patan Kilmari.

I
as a mortal.
Dil Kilmari remembers the difficulties of
adjusting to leaving her post. "When I left
the Kilmari temple and weilt to live with my
and father, I didn't want to stay. I just
wanted to go back to the temple." Thr Rash- I
milla's family, the sense of associat-
ed with a virgin Godtless daughter has been
tempered by feelings of bitter-
ness. A forthrjght woman with a
bush of curly hair, her mother
Pragya Devi tells me, "If I knew
.. then what I know now, I would'
never have let Rashmilla become
the royal Kilmari. It's been too
hard for her to adjust. She can't
read or write. She never talks,
she rar,ely smiles. When we joke ><
and laugh, she sits quietly, with-
drawn. / We, her family, are
strangers to her. The other day :(
she tlirned to me and asked me,
'Mother, why did you ever let me
become Kilmari?'" /
"
would go and S"ee the new Kilmar,i being
pulled in the chariot and ms heart was sad."
In the old 'days, an even bleaker future
awaited ex-living-Goddesses. Few Nepalese,
want to marry a dethroned Goddess. There
are superstitious stories such as snakes issu-
ing forth from ex-Kilmaris, devouring weak
husbands. Many will cite examples from ex-
t
ot being pulled at the Indrajatra festival, my
heart is filled with joy and .remembering."
For Nani Maya, the difficulties of everyday
life made her nostalgic for the safety of
a divine past. "I have a recurring dream of
being chased through the streets of Kath-
by an unknown Goddess. I run and
run and only fmd refuge in the safety of the
Kilmari's quarters."
Weaned from pomp and leis-
ure, an ex-Kilmari reenters her
Mortal again: Anita Sakya, former Kumari, adjusts to life at home
I walk one last . time over to
the royal Kilmari Ghar and
offerings of flowers and
money on a stone in the center
of the courtyard. 1 ask the at1en-
dant that it go to her future .,.
schooling, since the pension the
government provides for het
once she leaves office (RS640 a
month-about US$ll) cannot
even begin to cover school fees,
let alone tutoring fees neceSSaFY
for her to catch up wlth lost
schooling once she is retired.
The little Goddess is taken to
the window by 'the Kilmarima,
and I am blessed with the vision
family's household as a normal family mem-
ber, expected to cook, olean and. do other
chores. Dil Kilmari recalls the hardship of
. returning home having to sudd.enly ad-
just to her arranged marriage and the many
duties of a Nepali wife. "Married' life was
difficult after being treated like a Deity. As
a daughter-in-law, I had to.Qbey my in-laws.
As a Wife, I had to obey my husband. I was
accustomed to people worshipping me and
bringing me gifts: As a ¥1ife, I was expected
to sweep ·the floor, cook rice and earry wa-
ter. I was a little bit lazy. My husband beat
. me kd said, 'You're no good. You're worth-
less, and I'm going to leave you.' Each year I
Kilmari's lives in an effort to verify this
myth. Qut of nine recent ex-Kilmaris, seven
married, and their husbands died within the
first year of marriage, say local.residel)ts.
Still, no} all Kilmari's lives are met with
'misfortune' or unhappiness. Nani Maya was
the royal Kilmari over twenty years ago. She
is a well-adjusted, happily married middle-
aged wife and mother of two children who
now runs her own pharmacy. "I feel blessed
to have been a Kumari. 'It was a real privi-
lege. But my husband feels otherwise. When
the priests asked us to offer our daughter, he
refused. He would rather see our daughter
. receive an education. When I see the
of her face before a busload of tourists
stream in for a look. Despite her exposure to
thousands, the Kilmari's power and inner
feelings-of freedom or loneliness-remain
her own silent mystery. "We need Kilmaris,
no Goddess is more important to this valley,"
Siddhi Laxmi said.
As old traditions and ways of life fade in
this rapidly changing city, just how many
Newar Buddhist families will continue to
c'hoose the dharma of a virgin Goddess for
their daughters, is anyones guess. _
Send donations for 3'HE FORMER KUMARI EN-
DOWMENT to Hif)rfu Heritage 107
Kaholalele Road, Kapaa, Hawaii 96746-9304 USA
"The priests summoned her to
the temple for inspection-to
see if she still had Taleju's ener-
gy. They could find no mar,ks
to disqualify her, no marks of
bleeding, for she has never
menstruated. All they could
find was a slight scratch on her
ear. For this they said she
could no longer reign. Asked
what she thougnt, she replied,
"It is not my opinion. It is Tale-
jus decision. When she is
ready to leave me, she will."
as she sits silently, crouched in
a seat designed for a child,
alone in this room. 1 realize
that this is all she has ever
known-that most of he! forty-
five years of existence have
puberty, Dharma Kilmari has
become an unusually powerful
living Goddess, for she now
can fullfil the elaborate secret
rituals that traditionally only
male Buddhist priests perform.
When I go and bow down
before her with offerings of
flowers, incense, fruit and
some money, she gives me a big
tilaka of rice and red powder
on my third eye-a sign my
soul has made union with Tale-
ju. I sense her unique energy,
. I
/
Stili fit for the chair: Priests go to her
for initiation, not the child Goddess
taken place in this
room. Only during
festival times when
carried through the
streets has she ever
seen the outside
world. When given
the opportunity to
leave the duties of
divinity, she chose
instead to become an
expert at what she
knows rather than
face an unfamiliar
world. Unlike the
child Kilmaris, who in
a sense are controlled
by the priests who
worship them until
"She was never taught to
read or WTite, and yet she
reads the sutras and performs
ceremonies," her mother ex-
plains. "She has no signs of
unhappiness. She is very happy
with her power." When I ask
how Kilmari feels about her
self-imposed confinement, he!
mother replies, "She never feels
sad that she cannot leave her
room, because she already
knows everything that goes on
outside of her room. She sees
everything. She sees the future.
She is free inside."
JUNE , 1997 HINDUISM TODAY 29
i
·;
innate serenity regardless of the cacophony that surrounds us. This
is the basis of the Hindu praotice of mauna, the vow to remain
silent, and it is why some subdue speech altogether. Mauna is not
the exdusive province of the sage. Brilliant orators and well-to-do in-
tellectuals have also chosen to curb their speech. Mahatma Gandhi
was perhaps the most prominent public figure to observe mauna. He
tamed his tongue every Monday, communicating on that day only
through wrIting.
The late Swami Nirmalananda of Karnataka had served the Army
Postal Service in Europe during World War II. He later held vari-
ous government posts in India. He travelled the globe and studied
well the world's religions and philosophies. In the end, his burning
search for truth culminated in silence. "If you desire to live in
peace," he said, "hear all-that falls on your ears, see all that appears
before your eyes, realize that everything is in accordance with the
eternal law of nature, and be silent." He did not speak for eleven
years, arid thereafter spoke sparingly. When he did,jt was with clar-
ity and conviction. "Wisdom to me is not a set of words, but fresh-
ness and emptiness of the mind. Empty the mind by self-observa-
tion, self-awareness and inner attention. Thus make the mind shine
like a mirror. Then nothing is seen or known but the limitless radi-
ance of eternity. This is a wonderful source of ever-renewed joy and
inspiration beyond words."
Mauna is practiced in varying degrees by spiritual leaders, as-
cetics, aspirants and householders alike, throughout India and
30 HINDUISM TODAY JUNE , 1997
abroad. Still, popular belief holds that the vow of silence can be fol-
lowed only by ascetics and sages; that it lies beyond the capability of
ordinary mortals. HINDUISM TODAY correspondent, Choodie Shiv-
aram of Bangalore, dispels this misconception, "I have seen ordinary
people observing mauna in daily life. A very orthodox elderly cook
in our house during my school days strictly observed mauna one day
of the week. No matter how much we joked about her stony silence,
she never budged. So, too, my great grand-aunt, Kadakka, observed
mauna on certain days of the week. She insisted that we children
keep perfect silence at least during meals. Of course, despite our
valiant efforts, our childish giggles could not be contained."
Choodie continues, "In my childhood, an old friend of my father,
Shri Chandrasekhar, would chat with me and my young friends. I
had not seen him for many years, and I was shell-shocked last year
when he refused to talk to me. Only later did I learn that he was ob-
serving mauna. Now in his eighties, Chandrasekhar spends most of
his time at the Ramakrishna Math. He has been observing mauna
for the past 17 years. Although with a wife and children, he speaks
only for two hours on the first of every month. Even then, he is very
choosy about to whom he speaks, and how much. Always clad in a
white dhoti and half-sleeved white shirt, a sling bag over his shoul-
der, simplicity is his way of life."
Choodie heard Chandrasekhar's insights on his singular talking day
last month: "Often people take me to be some worthless being, look-
ing at my dress and silence. But it just does not matter to me. I began
Oasis: The French Polynesian island of Bora Bora, a quiet citadel
in the midst of the central South Pacific, the ocean called peaceful
expression for a period. "I was in kashtha mauna for one year. I did
not use anything to communicate. There is always an advantage in re-
moving the mind from worldly attachments, whatever the means.
Mauna is one of the means." Baba gave up speaking over forty years
ago. Sri Tiruchi Maha Swarnigal of Kailash Ashram, Bangalore, un-
by talking for only one hour a day. After about one year, I began talk-
ing only once in a fortnight and gradually made it once a month.
Now, I speak only two hours once a month. I
plan to give it up totally. Besides talking, my
communication is limited to written conver-
sation with the brahmacharis in the ashram.
That, too, is only done when I have to pass on
some message or give instructions. I do not
communicate with anyone else. I'm only a lis-
tener now. Silence teaches you to listen."
Prema Pandurang of Chennai is perhaps
an unlikely candidate to have spontaneously
taken a 41-day vow to remain mute. Prema is
a famous religious lecturer in South India.
She was a professor of English at Chennai's
Presidency College for twenty-three years.
She told HINDUISM TODAY'S publisher how
silence came to her. "For a long time, I had
"Qeen a speaker. One day I woke up and said,
'Now. Let me see how it sounds-how it
feels-if I don't speak. ' It was not that any-
thing in the world disgusted me. It was more
the thought that there was so much sound
around me, and I was creating most of it. I
said, 'Let me be in silence and watch.' " Pre-
ma found the silence profound, and wrote
down her inspirations in a small book, Re-
flection on Silence. She now continues her si-
lence every Tuesday.
As austere as maunis may seem, most still
shy away from the absolute vow. The strictest
observance of mauna, utter silence, can seem
unnatural to onlookers and impossible for
those wishing to attempt it. Such a deliberate
denial of human interaction is a stark with-
drawal from a world structured and sus-
tained with words. In Sadhus, The Holy Men
of India (1991, Brijbasi, New Delhi), author
Ramesh Bedi describes an encounter with a
most extreme mauni. "Sadhus who take the
vow of silence include those who will conde-
scend to communicate with others by ges-
. ture or by writing things down and also
those who take the absolute vow of silence,
the kashtha mauna vow. Kashtha means
wood. So this is the vow 'to be silent like a log
of wood.' The kashtha mauna sadhu will par-
take in no communication at all with others.
Only very penitential ones are capable of un-
dertaking this vow. One such sadhu I encoun-
tered in 1938, in the foothills of the Shivalak
Hills off Haridwar, even refused to accept the
fruits and edibles offered to him. Having of-
fered him a handful of mulberries once, I re-
turned the next week to discover that these
lay where I had left them. He didn't even
SPEECH NEEDS COMPANY, SILENCE
NEEDS SOLITUDE. SPEECH WANTS
TO CONQUER OTHERS, SILENCE
HELPS CONQUER ONESELF.
SPEECH MAKES FRIENDS OR FOES,
SILENCE BEFRIENOS ALL. SPEECH
DEMANDS RESPECT, SILENCE
COMMANDS IT
SPEECH IS EARTH-BOUND, SILENCE
IS HEAVEN-BOUND. SPEECH EDU-
CATES, SILENCE EXALTS. SPEECH IS
SUBJECTIVE, SILENCE OBJECTIVE.
SPEECH HAS REGRETS, SILENCE
NONE. SPEECH HAS LIMITATIONS,
SILENCE IS BOUNDLESS. SPEECH
NEEDS EFFORT, SILENCEA LOT MORE .
SPEECH IS HUMAN, SILENCE IS
DIVINE. WHILE SPEAKINGYOU ARE
HEARD BY CREATURES, IN SILENCE
YOU HEARTHE CREATOR.
SILENCE LEADSTO A STILLNESS OF
THE MIND, THEN TO INTROSPEC-
TION, THEN TO SELF-CLEANSING,
FINALLYTO LIBERATION.
PREMlo. Plo.NDURlo.NG
dertook mauna for two years while living in a
cave in the region of Tayumaneshwarar Tem-
ple, Tamil Nadu. The purpose of his vow was
to "contemplate deeply upon his l1pcoming
divine mission." Swami tells stories of the
many snakes encountered in the cave. As
they passed him by harmlessly, he found that
even wild animals are tamed by a true prac-
titioner of mauna.
Quest for quiet: To abruptly stop speaking
may be too stern a step for most. But the
benefits of mauna can be obtained in less ar-
duous ways (see the Seven Sadhanas of Si-
lence, page 32). If you have the desire, dedi-
cating some time to silence can be easy. J.P.
Vaswani advises, "FIrst thing when you
wake up in the morning, observe silence for
at least ten minutes. This will help you to
gather your thoughts." Sri Tiruchi Swami
recommends that people with busy sched-
ules fix a day or two in a week, or an hour or
two in a day, for mauna. He elaborated to
HINDUISM TODAY, "An ordinary devotee can
observe mauna daily during, before or after
the morning worship (personal or commu-
nal) for a duration of about one to three
hours. One can also be silent for one to three
hours during the evenings before or after
sunset. Silence can be practiced one or two
days a week while keeping aloof from one's
normal schedules and activities. A visit to the
temple can become extra special by includ-
ing the discipline of not speaking. Also, one
can make the vow of silence a part of ones
pilgrimage. All days are suitable for mauna.
The longer we can detach ourselves mental-
ly from daily trivials, the better."
Recalling her own profound experience of
silence, Prema Pandurang implores, "There is
so much stress and tension today that every-
one must observe silence-some time away
from mother, father, child and wife, friends
and everyone-at least a half-hour every day
with no telephone calls in some corner of the
house where one can see nature. Just sit and
silently think about what you are doing. Youll
be different. It is necessary. It brings your
high blood pressure down, makes your pulse
beat normally. You start recollecting whatever
you've done and you start planning for what
you're going to do. For this introspection you
need silence, and that is why for the past eight
years I've observed silence on Tuesdays."
One of the foremost reasons to curtail con-
look at them. Nearby villagers would regular-
ly bring offerings of food, but the ascetic ate none of it, living on the
wild fruits he found in the jungle."
More common are those who observe complete silence for shorter
periods and those who communicate through writing. Baba Hari Dass
of the Mount Madonna Center of California currently "talks" tersely
through a book-sized chalkboard. But even he abandoned all outward
versation is to conserve energy. Abstinence
from speech transmutes the creative energies of the mind in the same
way that sexual abstinence, brahmacharya, transmutes the physical
energies. Baba Hari Dass explains, "We talk only by exhalation. The
more we talk, the more we have to exhale and the more life energy
we lose. Energy is lost primarily in two ways-by sex and by talking.
The origin of both sound and sex is the muladhara chakra at the base
JUNE, 1997 HINDUISM TODAY 31
/
of the spine. When we talk, we use tremendous energy This can be
felt if you stop talking for a few days and then start talking again. The
energy we preserve through silence can be used for meditation."
A more mundane impetus for mauna is simply to stay out of trou-
ble. Chandrasekhar confessed, "I have committed many mistakes. I
have been harsh to people and have hurt many with my speech. F1-
nally, I realized the impOltance of silence. In mauna, the mind pro-
jects all of our faults. They come like flashes. We begin to look
within and see our mistakes. This helps us to rectify ourselves.
This can solve many of life's petty problems. The natural mind is .
filled with compassion and Divinity I think mauna is the first
step towards realizing God. It detaches us from worldly pleasures."
In this regard, Rev. Swami Satchidananda, founder of Integral
Yoga Institute, shares a Sanskrit proverb-"Mauna kalaka nas-
H. " He explains, "Mauna means silence; kalaka means prob-
lems or quarrels and nasti means nonexistent. So this say-
ing tells us, 'When you are silent, there are no quarrels.' By
talking, we create problems because we do not know how
much to talk, how to talk, what to talk and when to talk. So,
the immediate benefit of mauna is to avoid problems. The
other benefits then follow: The silence of speech leads to the
silence of mind, because if you decide not to speak, what
good are thoughts? Every time a thought comes, you cannot
express it with words, so the mind ultimately says, 'Alright,
what is the point of my thinking?' You get into a thoughtless
state. But there is one more mauna, the bodily silence. That
Saven Sadhanas of Silence
Some silence is golden, others are silver and a lot prove out just to
be heavy metal-copper, iron, zinc or tin. A few kinds of silence are
brazen brass. Silence can lJe learned. Let's begin at the bottom,
by silencing the brass. To do this there is a sadhana, spiritual
discipline, the first of the Seven Sadhanas of Silence.
The brass sadhana is to conquer jealousy, which bemoans,
"She has more than I do. He gets everything he asks for,
while I get nothing or very little. It's unfair." This
noise goes on daily in the mind of those are in
the jealousy chakra (sutala), located in
the knees, which has to stop spinning in
the astral areas of the inner mind to make
way for peace of mind. How do we do this?
It is easy Just begin to stop talking to yourself
about what is unfair. Let all mental arguments
go. Drop the subject. Be silent about the issue.
Such a silence provides a place for harmony of
minds, while too much noisy complaining about
"me and mine" gives no room for others.
The silence of tin is an even worse din. Have
you ever heard a ohild beat on a tin can? That's
how the force of anger sounds, "clank, c1ank,
clank." Not musical, not melodious, not even
nice. The noise of anger, which vibrates in
the vitala chakra located in the thighs, has to
means you don't move around. You stay in one place. That Vishvamitra: beyond words
helps the silences of speech and mind also." Swamis insti-
tute holds occasional silent retreats where participants study yoga
and meditation, all the while remaining silent. During one retreat, he
jested in his jovial way, "Observe all, but refrain from talking. I will
do all the talking for you. Whatever you want to say, just leave it to
me ... I think you cannot talk too much about silence."
The Ribhu Gita tells us, "Sitting in silence is the holy ablution. Sit-
ting in silence is the japa. Sitting in silence is the worship. Sitting in
silence is the highest. Read silently to yourself about the experience
that all is Brahman. In a moment, all the punya, merit, which would
result from a million asvamedha, horse sacrifices, can be obtained"
(verses 16.42 and 33.29).
Quiet inspiration: L to R: The ever-silent Baba Han Dass of Califor-
nia. Kamataka's late Swami Nirmalananda, speechless for 11 years.
The late Homi Baba of Banaras, silent for 40 years. A sadhu offers a
mute bleSSing. Prema Pandurang, silent for 41 days in 1996.
be quieted to enjoy even the smallest sliver of silver peace. How do
we do this? Well, it is expensive. A monetary sum is paid for each
outburst or even unexpressed wave of anger. A jar, labeled "anger
penance," is established in the shrine room, into which a monetary
sum is placed each time anger is experienced-the greater the ex-
pression, the larger the sum. The money collected is sent to the
charity of one's choice on the first day of each month.
The silence of zinc comes next. It is quieting the force of fear.
Yes, fear can produce a very noisy mind. But it is not beyond being
controlled and courted into obeyance. Fear creates. Often we create
what we fear and make it happen by fearing that it might. We give
it that energy, that possibility in our life. Fear vibrates in the atala
chakra., located in the hips. To bring fear under control is a power-
ful accomplishment. How do we do this? One way is through the
power of affirmation, reprogramming the subconscious mind. An
affirmation is a series of positive words in line with a visual concept
repeated time and time again. If caB be repeated mentally or,
preferably, verbally Here is an effective affirmation for overcoming
fear. "I am the complete master of all my forces. My spiritual ener-
gies govern and control the force fields wherever I am for the high-
est good. Through understanding, being a pure soul, full of spirited
life, I am filled and thrilled with unlimited power now and forev-
er." While repeating this affirmation, visualize a bright white pro-
tective shell around your outer aura with a round opening at the top.
As you persist, the trembling voice of fear will desist.
Now, the silence of iron. Many of us have strong memories,
which become stronger as years go by As strong as iron, they are
there, rusting away in the muladhara chakra at the base of the
spine. How do we silence memory? Write down or type in your
computer all that you want to forget. Then burn up the paper. Writ-
ing down problems and burning them in any ordinary fire brings
them from the subconscious into the external mind, releasing the
suppressed emotion as the fire consumes the paper. The memory
still exists, but it has lost its emotional power.
With the past thus stilled, we come to the silence of copper. We
are climbing up the ladder of the chakras when we try, to silence our
reason, which in most of us is the noise of asking rhetorical and in-
tellectual questions over and over again. Questions that have no an-
swers. "Why did he do that? Does he not know better?" And on and
on and on. It is important for seekers to silence the tendency to ra-
tionalize, to explain away, to excuse and defend the ego. To silence
this svadhishthana chakra, located at the kidney level, some basic
yoga must be done to empower the higher self. Controlled breath-
ing, pranayama., helps harness and slow down the prana, energy,
that spins this chakra, as does hatha yoga. Sit quietly with the spine
in a straight line. Breathe naturally, as a baby breathes, by using the
diaphragmatic muscles below the solar plexus. Inhale. The di-
aphragm pushes the stomach wall out, as the lower lungs inflate.
Exhale. Relaxing the diaphragm, the air is expelled. Then pull the
diaphragm in to push out the last bit of air. Nine counts in, hold one,
nine counts out-this is a basic sadhana for the silence of copper.
With the intellect quieted a bit, we can seek the silence of silver,
stilling the willpower located at the solar-plexus manipura chakra,
which spins constantly, being the nerve center that interconnects all
the forces of the physical and astral bodies. How to quiet willpow-
er? Competitiveness and aggression must stop, for these direct the
pranas, or energies, down to the lower chakras. The force of will-
fulness in its negative expression makes noises about self preserva-
tion-"Take care of me first and forget others." This can be coun-
teracted by the practice of speaking only that which is true, kind,
helpful and necessary The silver sadhana is to use willpower posi-
tively to control the tongue, to be a helpmate to silence by speaking
little, and never boasting of ambitions or attainments.
With the willpower subdued, the silence of gold comes into
view-without the L, it is God. So get the L out of it. Here silence
is truly the voice of God. To quiet the anahata chakra, heart center,
of understanding, soul knowing, vision and peaceful thoughts is not
to be a metaphysical know-it-all. It means not being a prophet or big
ego in speaking about how others should live, but rather silently liv-
ing the example of how one should be.
Then we come to the platinum vishuddha chakm, in the throat.
Here resides the force of divine love. Love is understanding, forgive-
ness, compassion and benevolent, selfless giving. It is the chakm that
the yogis enter to be truly silent. Here they cannot speak. Here they
feel good and fulfilled. True, writing on a chalk board communicates
the essentials; other than that, in a room alone such yogis are silent.
Not blank in consciousness. Silence does not mean emptiness as
much as divine fullness. They are all-seeing, for the vishuddha
chakm energies stimulate the third eye-the ajna chakm, the all-see-
ing, never-sleeping sight of the soul. Here we are truly silent. In a
room crowded with noise, we hear but a little of it. In meditation we
soar beyond into the infinite of infinities.
How to quiet the highest chakras, which are quietness itself? The
titanium metal of the ajna chakm of divine sight and the multifaceted
gems of the sahasmm chakm at the top of the head? Do they speak,
think, reason? Those who know and have experienced say no. These
jivanmuktas are content in their silent knowing, not knowing all that
they know: Their ever-watching presence on today's apparently hurt-
ing planet is an earned sukarma, good karma, for the human race.
They are the beginning and end of all. They see the cosmic panora-
ma of which the Vedas speak. "He contains all works, all desires, all
perfumes and all tastes. He encompasses the whole universe; he is
beyond speech and beyond desires. He is my atman within my heart,
he is Brahman" (Sama Veda, Chandogya Upanishad 3.1.4.4.4). "Now,
what people call 'the practice of silence' is really the disciplined life of
a student of sacred knowledge, for only by leading such a life does
one find the atman and meditate" (Chandogya Upanishad 5.5.4.3).
When to be silent then? Astrologers have an answer: one day
each week, on the day ruled by one's current mahadasha planet-
i.e., Monday for Moon dasha, Tuesday for Mars, etc. Some as-
trologers advise fasting and nonspeaking on that karmically critical
day. If you don't know such details of your horoscope, an easy and
pragmatic alternative is on the same day of the week you were born.
Enough said.
/
B\Y LAVI NA MELWAl'-i I, NEW YORK
HE YEAR WAS 1925 AND PANDU-
rang Shastri Athavale' was all of five
years old. Wrapping his tiny hand
around his graI1dfather's finger, he ac-
companied Vedic scholar to the
forsaken tenements where the harijans, the
untouchables, lived. There his grandfather, a
strong believer in Gandhian values, would
hold' a discourse on the Bhagavad Gita es-
pecially for these outcasts of society. At that
early age, the child learned about the heal-
ing power of religion. But he learned some-
thing more: whim they returned home, his
orthodox brahmin grandfather, having been
in touch with the untouchables, would still
undergo the ritual bath to cleanse himself
Young Athav.ale questioned this custom: if
God resides in everyone as the Qta says, he
reasoned, and the harijans were worthy of
listening to its holy words, then why were
they regarded as unclean? The seeds of
serving God through servi'ng humanity
were sown in childhood for Athavale-and
through his revolutionary Swadhyaya move-
ment he has worked to move outcasts into
the mainstream of society.
Indeed, if there is a Utopia on Earth, it is
probably the world created by Athavale in
thousands of obscure villages which are the
34 HINDUISM TODA,Y J l\NE, 1997
heartbeat of India. Through the concept of
bhakliferi (devotional visits) he has spread a
healing rriessage of love to all communities.
He has created amrutalayam (village tem-
ples) built by joint efforts of the villagers for
people from all religions, castes and eco-
nomic strata to worship together; yogeshwar
krushis (farms for God) where the villagers
give a few d1)ys of labor a year to show their
devotion to God, with the village's needy
sharing the prop-uce; matsyagandas (float-
ing temples of God) fishing boats on which
the fishermen give their time for a few days
per year, as devotion to Go.d, and share the
harvest with the needy. There are also vrik-
shamandirs (orchard temples) which are
cultivated impersonally by the villagers and
the produce given to the needy. Through the
ingenious jeevan sampada ("wealt..h oflife"),
religious songs are recorded and distributed
related to each Swaahyaya activity, explain-
ing in song, for example, the proper religious
attitude to take while caring for the trees in
the orchard temples. There are gauras
("home dairies") which are village-level
milk cooperatives, and bahna kendr-as,
'1adies centers."
Nor are the .children forgotten: bal sanskar
kendras ("children's value centers") are so-
cialization hNbs for children, and dhananjay
kreeda samuh ('1\rjuna's sport group") pro-
m0tes games and sports for the young.
DBT-"divine brain trusts"-are discussion
centers for youth. The;e is also the tattavaj-
nana vidyapeeth knowledge
center"), which offers a free two-year course
in Vedic and comparative religion.
Does this sound like a It is every
inch a reality, affecting the lives of over 20
million people in 100,000 villages in rural
India. This seeming miracle is the work of
tAthavale, a simple man of
God who has started ,a quiet revolutiop. in
Ir}dia by changing lives in remote villages.
In March, 1997, the world doffed its cap ifJ.
recognition of his work, conferring on him
the prestigious Templeton Prize for Progress
in Religion: valued at US$1.21
largest annual award in the world. Global in-
vestor John Marks Templeton instituted the
Templeton Prize for Progress in Religion in'
1972 because he felt the Nobel Prize unfair-
ly excluded spirituality from the disciplines ·
it honors. This prize's monetary value ex-
ceeds that of the Nobel Prize. As Templeton
polhts out, "It is not for saintliness or mere
good works, it is for progress. The Swa-
dhyaya movement is a new concept which
thrills me. Look what a benefit it is-
100,000 villages now living by the principles
of Elder Brother Now his disciples
are spreading this same concept, and per-
haps it will be useful in America and Eu-
. , ropl and many other areas."
Over 6,000 Swadhyayees (the name given
followers, meaning "truth seekers") gathered
in Madison Square Garden after the March
award announcement to felicitate Dadaji, as
he is known, with flowers, song and dance.
Like all their events, the flawless evening
was enljrely managed by unpaid volunteers.
Athavale's philosophy is logical and stun-
ning in its simplicity. He explains: "It is. my
experience that awareness of nearness of
God and reverence' for that pnwer creates
reverence for self, reverence for the other,
reverence for nature and reverence for the
entire creation. And devotion as an expres-
sion of gratitude to God can turn into a so-
cial . force to bring about transformative
changes in all aspects of human life arid at
all levels in the society." --:
Athavale was born in 1920 in the small vil-
. lage 0f Roha near Mumbai, the son of a
Brahmin scholar, Vaijnath Laxman Athavale
Shastri, who f9unded the Shriroad Bhagavad
Gita Pathashala, a seat of Vedic learning.
His grandfather was a headmaster and
Vedic scholar under whose_ guidance
Athavale learned not only cl?-ssic literature,
Sanskrit and Hindi? but also English, com-
parative religions and Eastern and Western
philosophy.
Byl twenty, Athavale was preaching the
, virtues of the Bhagavad Gita and attracting
people. In fact, in 1954 he addressed the Sec-
ond World Religious Conference in Japan
where his message was so impressive that he
was asked to speak I n other parts of the
world. Athavale, however, chose instead to
take the p ita to the villages of India, to teach
people to live by its tenets. In 1956 he estab-
lisheq his first social program, the tattvaj-
nana vidyapeeth, to teach the Vedic way of
life, which event.u,ally developed into the all-
India and worldwide movement it is today.
In the USA alone there are about 15,000 fol-
lowers at 350 centers in 38 states. Athavale's
fainily are of Siva, but in his tem-
ples he give's equal honor to all Deities, for
he believes that devotional temple worship is
. vital for c'oncentration on God. He leaves the
choice of Deity to the worshipers .
As a boy, Athavale . would trudge .,-miles
rather than ask his father for bus money.
When he was reprimanded, he say,
'1\sking for money is not in my nature." Even
today he. never asks for donations or even for
volunteers. Says Dilip Patel, a member of
Swadhyaya's US Devotional Associates of Yo-
geshwar, ''I've been doing this work for 20
years, and 4t still amazes me. Dada never asks
for anything. He merely says, this js an idea,
and if you intellectually accept then it is
your moral duty to do it. It has become sec-
ond nature to us." At the awards ceremony,
one of the Rockefellers asked what they could
do to help him. Athavale replied, "Nothing,"
to which the surprised member o( the bu-
lionaire family replied no one had ever be-
fore answered that way to a Rockefeller.
The fame and prestige has not made a
dent in Athavales frugal way of life. Says Pa- .
tel, '''He has a Spartan lifE}Style; his needs are
very few. He's a man who enjoys ideas, not
possessions." He lives with his wife in a mea-
ger one-bedroom apartment in Mumbai-
the same place where he has lived for 45
years. He gets up around 3AM to meditate,
and never misses his d¢ ly worship. His day
is devoted to discourses and work. In the
evening he relishes long walks, heplth per-
mitting. Recently his poor health has put
him in a wheelchair, but work is still way
of worshiping God. He takes no credit for
the awards and the honors, knowipg in his
heart who orchestrates these hapFY events.
Athavale smiles and says, 'The Templeton
Prize is God's love letter to me, and the de-
livery man is Sir John Templeton." __
JUNE , 1 9 9 7 H I'NDUISM TODi\- Y ·35
TRINIDAD
Driven T .... r"""'"
Sewdass
his temple
in the sea
cleo He placed these in the ocean,
and gradually built up the stones un-
til a small island rose from the water.
In time, Sewdass' Sadhu built a ce-
ment structure above the ocean wa-
ters, which he freely used as the ha-
van site for his prayers. Sumintra, a
community elder, remembers, "Peo-
ple used to laugh and make fun o£
the man when, day after day, he
would be seen riding his bicycle for
miJ..es to the sea. Many of the vil-
lagers said he was mad, but that did
not bother him. Look what we have
today, a beautiful Siva temple. Is thtl;t
madness?" The little-known Hindu
sadhu died in-l970.
In 1995 the temple was rebuilt in
exquisite style, and today is a main
tourist attraction. Located on the
central-western tip of the island,
with a view of Venezuela's coastline;
By ANIL MAHABIR, TRINIDAD
EWDASS SADHu' ...WAS BORN TO POVERTY-
stricken parentS in India on January 1,
1903. Yet he was a man with an inex-
plicable desire to build a house of God
against impossible odds and regardless ' of
tUe consequences to himself and his family.
He first came ~ 9 Trinidad as an indentured
laborer for five years. After completing the
contract as a cane cutter, he retilrned to In-
dia only to realize he had reentered poverty.
So he returned to ';friFlidad and settled in
Waterloo, a predominantly pro-Christian
and anti-Hindu village.
In 1947 he built the foundation of his
dream ' temple on sugar company land.
When British authorities ordered him to
stop, he refused and continued construction.
He was arrested, prosecuted and incarcerat - .
ed for 14 days for violating the order. His
temple was demolished. After h i ~ release,
Sewdas5 pledged to build his-temple on "no
man's la'nd"-the sea.
the temple is maintained by village women
who gather every evening to offeF prayers
and sing bhajans. ,.
Also in ~ 9 9 5 the local Hindu Seva Sangh
installed a statue of Sew-dass near the temple.
entrance. It is only the second statue honor-
ing a Trinidadian of Indian origin in the
country.
Legend has it that the man who gave the
order to destroy Sewdass Sadhu's first tem-
ple and the man who bulldozed the edifice
died under mysterious circumstances while
Sewdass was in jail. w/
ASTROLOGY
Every day thereafter Sewdass Sadhu would
pack a small leather bag with foundation
blocks and journey to the seaside on a bicy-
Can We Clone the StarsP
poses some interesting
questions regarding jy-
. otisha. In a horoscope, the
lagna (rising sign) and any
planets influencing it have
much to do with a person's ap-
pearance. An attractive face
will have the influence of a
benefic planet like the Moon
or Venus on the rising sign.
Take a Marilyn Monroe or a
Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis.
Their charts show the Moon
aspecting the lagna from the
7th house, and both have
Jupiter in the 8th house,
adding charisma. Lets imagine
we clone Marilyn, but the
clone is born with Mars and
Ketu in the rising sign and Sat-
urn in the 7th house instead of
the Moon. This is not a combi-
nation that produces charm
and beauty. To the contrary,
someone with Mal'S and Ketu
in the lagna will not have a
pleasing appearance and will
tend to experience injuries to
the face or head that leave
scars. Does a clone somehow
not come under the laws 0f
nature and jyotisha? Or could
Marilyn's clone only be born
when the Moon and I:ising sign
were in the same position as
the original Marilyn's?
If the jyotisha chaFt of the
clone is entirely different from
the original, the karma, dhar-
ma, interests, motivati0ns,
thmlghts and actions of the
clone will all be different.
Wouldn't these factors eventu-
ally reshape the appearaFlce of
the clone to reflect what's hap-
36 aJNDUISM TODAY JU'NE, 1997
pening on the in-
side? Imagine if a
clone of Marilyn
Monroe was born
at the exact mo-
ment Mahatma What lfil Movie star Marilyn Monroe's clone
Gandhi was born. was born under Mahatma Gandhi's chart?
We would have a
Marilyn clone body with the
astn)logy chart and dharma of
Mahatma Gandhi. All the indi-
cations of a great mystic would
be in the chart, but the body
would resonate to the DNA of
a seductive movie star. Or
would it?
Jyotisha texts indicate that
the moment of conception de-
termines the birth time. This
means the astrology of that
moment, as well as the pranas,
thoughts and feelings of the fa-
ther and mother all influence
the final product of body,
mind and soul. Perhaps two
horoscopes would apply: that
of the original Marilyn would
pertain to the karma of the
physical body and that of the
clone would delineate the in-
ner karma and dharma of the
incoming soul. Nevertheless,
it's all very confusing to pon-
der and would probably be
even more so for the clone
who had the look of Marilyn
and the aspirations of Mahat-
ma GaFldhi.
1997 HARE KRISHNA
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• Third Eye & Kundalini. B.S. Goel. $22.00
• Chanakya's Neeti SCripture. RK. Sharma. pap. $14.95
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Mom, Please Come Home
Fulltime parenthood is back in style
OTHERHOOD MAY BE THE MOST CON-
troversial career you can have these
days," opens this manual for stay-at-
home moms. Staying Home is the re-
sult of the authors' own career woman-to-
full-time-mom transition and their survey
of a thousand others who did the same. The
b60k is a highly practical guide to making a
transition from a double-income, no .Jd.ds,
whether to put their career on hold ana de-
vote themselves to their family, to continue
wor-king or to do something in-between.
When the New York Times assessed this
book, their reviewer cynically observed
that the average US marriage lasts just 9.1
years, and any woman reckless enough to
completely give up her career for her chil-
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that of a single-income family
raising sons and daughters. It
is astonishing to read the kind
of obstacles these women
faced-often from other
wor£en. "A 28-year-old moth-
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criticized her for giving up
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even told her that their own
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ST.AYING
·HOME
bandless and jobless future.
Yet, for the family that stays
together, Darcie and Martha
make a persu.asive case
that-with proper financial
planning, smart shopping ,
and fewer indulgences-kin-
dred can indeed live on one
incoIIJ.e. In fact, the second
income is much overrated.
"Unless you are making over
$60,000 a year, it is cheaper
to stay home, espef:ially
with two children," Darcie
toldJIINDUISM TODAY.
. home with her, since she is
not a trained child-care work-
er." Motherhood is held in
such low esteem these days
that the book suggests answers to the dread-
ed query, "What do.you do?" with sjlmething
more substantive than "I'm a mom."
Only 47% of American mothers are full-
time homemakers, although that percent-
age is now slowly increasing. Many women
begin a career, then have children in their
thirties and face the tough decision
I ,
One option for moms-at-
hQme is to start some kind of
home-based business, as the authors did-
which is the subject of their next book.
Staying Home (240 pages, softcover) is
available from Himalayan Academy Publica-
tions, 107 Kaholalele Road, Kapaa, Hawai·i,
96746-9304, USA. including airmail
shipping is US$13.95 for the USA and Cana-
da; $19.95 for everywhere else.
Saraswat; Oev;: A Remarkable CD
Enjoy 75 min. of Sanskrit and
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celebrates classical Indian
music and the ancient tradi-
tion of Mantra. "This album is an auspicious beginning for
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-Composer: Aditya Verma - Vocals: Kala Ramnath
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US$15 CD & $10 Cassette, $4 shipping and handling.
Overseas, please add an additional $4.
For orders or free catalogue: Galaxy Publications & Recordings
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SIVANANDA ASHRAM
7emfde
673 Eighth Avenue - Val Morin Quebec - Canada JOT 2RO
1-819-322-3226 1-819-322-1379 Fax: 1-819- 2-5876
Swami Vishnu-
devananrla
1927·1993
Sunday J une 20th-29th
Mariamman Temple
1St Anniversary Celebrations
The first anniversary ofthe
Mariamman installation will be
celebrated with special ten-day
pujas, each sponsored by a different
family The tenth day will conclude
the series of pujas with a grand
pongala festival.
Sunday, June 29th
PONCALA
Our 6th annual fungala celebra-
tions will commence with a special
Homa for Devi from 6-9am, after
which fire from the Homa pit will
be taken to start the cooking fires.
A traditional Tamil festival
especially for women for women,
for the well bei of all.
SubramanyalAyyappa Temple's
third anniversary with the
conclusion ofspecial9-da
Chandika Homa in the m g
followed by the evening
Ki!lashabhishekamand
Sankabhishekam
a Bharata Natyam
performance with Smt. Priyamvada
Shankar dance gro real.
nsor
is festival
sportation,
on. ceding the
actua procession will be 15 days of
family poojas.
Thanks and Appreciation
We wish to thank all the devotees who helped
to make last year's programso successful. We
especially thank those who worked so hard to
install the Mariamman and Navagraha statues
in their newshrines. Special thanks to those
who built the beautiful 18 foot tall Chariot for
the Kaavadi festival.
Some ofthe wonderful projects planned for
next Summer include thecompletion ofan
outdoor kitchen and dining hall. These will be
used for feasts and celebrations. We plan to
construct 18 steps for Lord Ayyappa, as at
Saoorimalai, and continue the steps to the
bottomofthe hill.
Ofcour.;e, the Temple requires fu nds for the
completion ofall these works. All donations
in time and/or money are very much
appreciated. Checks and money order.;
should be drawn in favourof·Sivananda
AshramTemple: Contact the Temple manager
if you desire a receipt fortd)( deduction. Be
sure to send your full postal address and
phone number alongwith yourdonation.
An Ancient God's Visible Grace
It began on September 21, 1995, when an image of Ganesa in a New Delhi temple be-
gan sipping milk. Then, this modern miracle took on global dimensions as, over sever-
al months, it was witnessed by millions, in temples, shrines and homes worldwide.
How timely that, only days before, Satguru Sivaya Subramuniyaswami had fmished his
illustrated resource book, Loving Ganesa---800 pages of insights into this great God!
Loving Ganesa is at once simple, deep and practical, and teaches ever so many ways
that Ganesa's grace can be attained through sincere devotion, song, prayer and medita-
tion, to bring greater harmony, contentment and spirituality into our daily life.
Imagine yourself sitting crosslegged under a shady tree, the hum of insects and a
gentle breeze coloring the background as you absorb the words of an important
teacher. Only a handful of religious texts have been able to convey such an <;lVerwhelm-
ing presence; this is one.-Napra Review
It is an important text for English-speaking readers and should remain as an all-
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much-loved remover of obstacles.-Publishers Weekly
A majestic book of love, peace and happiness depicting Ganesa as a friend and pro-
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the world's oldest living religion.-Book Reader
800 pages. $19.
95
paper. lavishly illustrated. ISBN 0-945497-64-4
HIMALAYAN
ACADEMY
PUBLICATIONS
107 Kaholalele Rd
Kapaa, Hawaii 96746-9304 USA
Tel: 1-800-890-1008, ex. 238
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http//www.HinduismToday.kauai.hi.us/ashram/
Exceptional Answers to
Eternal Questions
Every spiritually-inclined human being will be enriched by the path re-vealed in
this t008-page volume. India's vision of the Divine is depicted in all of its infinte
variety here: meditative, devotional, philosophical, scriptural and yogic, answering
the vital questions: What are life's ultimate goals? How can I achieve them? How
do Hindus view family, sex, sin, worship, death and nonviolence? What are the
foremost schools of Hindu thought, and what do they teach? Dancing with Siva is
the masterful work of Sivaya Subramuniyaswami, a traditional satguru immersed,
for half a century, in an ongoing global Hindu renaissance.
English-speaking Hindus, yoga enthusiasts, and anyone interested in Sanskrit lit-
erature and culture will be overjoyed by this remarkable reference work of Hindu
belief and culture .... Quite simply-the best English overview of Hinduism avail-
able today.-Napra Review
The swami concisely answers 155 key questions, ranging from "What is the ulti-
mate goal of earthly life?" to "How are Hindu marriages arranged?"
... a 40-page timeline, a 200-page lexicon of Hindu terms, a comparative guide to
major religious traditions, and a primer for teaching religious principles to chil-
dren ... enriched by extensive scriptural quotations and reproductions of Rajput
art.-Yoga Journal
1,008 p .• $19.
95
paper. lavishly illustrated. ISBN 0-945497-47-4
Shipping: to USA, add 10%, to other countries, add 20%
These two titles are also available in: • Australia: Yoga in Daily Life Tel: 02 9518 7788, Fax: 02
95187799. Canada: Int' Yoga in Daily Life: 604 524 2942 Fax: 604 5241395. Europe: Om
Vishwa Guru Deep Hindu Mandir I?H/Fax 3611143504 email: ervin@mail.matav.hu. India: Munshiram
Manoharlal Publishers Delhi : PH: 11-777-1668 Fax:11-751-2745. Bangalore: Jiva Rajasankara Fax:
91-80-839-7119 email: jiva@giasbg01.vsnl.net.in • Malaysia: Hinduism Today I Sanatana Dharma Publi-
cations: PH: 03 3319242. Mauritius: Saiva Siddhanta Church PH: 412-7682 Fax: 412-7177. New
Zealand: India Emporium Tel: 09 3773733 Fax: 09 3733300 • Russia: (Russian Language edition of
Dancing with Siva) Centre of Tantra Sangha Tel : 70 95 465 0339 Fax: 70 95 972 0230 email: tantra@
online.ru • Singapore: Hinduism Today I Sanatana Dharma Publications: Tel: 957 66 012 • South Africa:
Wizard's Warehouse Tel: 021 461 9719 Fax: 021 45 1417. Trinidad: Aswinee & Narendra Persad
Tel: 809 662 8741 Fax: 809 662 3351 • UK: Hinduism Today Tel: 0171 9379163 Fax: 01714601819
E-mail: easan1@aol.com
• Also available from India Ink on the Internet at: www.pacific-basin.com/indiainklindiaink.html
..
Prof Bharat J. Gajjar is available to
give yoga and meditation workshops/
seminars on Hinduism at your loca-
tion. He is a disciple of HH Swami
Vishnu-Devananda Maharaj, has
written books on and taught yoga
and meditation for 30 years. He
manages the Sivananda Yoga Ctr of
Delaware, has his' own local TV
show, and has given many seminars
and workshops on yoga across the US.
Tel: 302-733-7576 • Fax: 302-737-6835
Hinduism Today SE-Asia Subs. offices
In Singapore:
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Bukit Panjang Post Office • PO Box 246, Singapore, 916809
Kindly contact: Mrs. Dohadeva: 957 66 012 • Thanam:
952 69 586 • Uma Maheswaran: 980 42 2379.
In Malaysia:
Sanathana Dharma Publications Sdn Bhd. (391870K)
No: 15, Lintang Besi, off Jalan Melawi
41000 Klang, Selangor, Malaysia.
Kindly contact: Chudikadevi Saravan, 03 331 9242
Rohini Kumar, 03 774 2946 • Thanabalan, 044219326
Marriage Rites and Rituals of Hindus
Hindu Marriage Samskara by
Dr. Prem Sahai.
This book is a guide and
practical manual for under-
standing, conducting and
recording the marriage
experience. Dr. Sahai gives
step-by-step procedure in a
clear and organized but not
overly complicated manner.
By studying this book, a
couple can deeply appreciate
the profound step they are
taking in their lives, and
consciously embrace with joy
HINeD
lt1ARRIA(;E
SA14SKARA
MA. RRlAGE RITES AND RI t UALS OF HINDUS
PREM SAHA)
the fullnes of this noble rite of passage. It is designed not
merely to inform, but also to become a lifelong part of the
family archives.
"Highly recommended. A must to go back to our ancient tra-
ditions" - Hinduism Today. 150 pg. Hard bound. US$15.00
Available through
Himalayan Academy Publications
107 Kaholalele Road
Kapaa, Hawaii 96746-9304 USA
Phone: 1-800-890-1008 ext 238 - within USA
Phone: 808-822-3152 ext 238 - for overseas
Fax: 1-808-822-4351- 24 hours
Worship the Divine Mother Goddess
Kali on July 4 (new moon), 5 & 6 at
Armeliese's School in Laguna Beach,
Calif. Officiating priest from the
Dakshineswar Kali Temple (India).
Ecstatic kirtans, flower offerings,
great veg. meals. Sugg. donation for
the weekend US$45 per person $90
per family. For reservation, check or
money order to: Kali Mandir,
PO Box 4700, Laguna Beach, CA
92652-4700 USA • Tel: 714-494-1906
Hanuman Yagna
For the welfare of the
Universe, courage and
success, Sri Sai Suvarchala
Hanuman yagna will be
performed May 23rd to
May 31st. Sponsorship is
from US$108 to $508. Call
for information or make
checks payable to:
Sri Shirdi Sai Baba Temple, 1449 Abers Creek Rd.
Monroeville, PA 15146-3603 USA
Tel: 1-412-374-9244 • Fax: 1-412-374-0940.
Shri Maha Muniraji,
successor designated by
Shri Haidakhan Babaji
(as written about in
Autobiography of a Yogi).
USA Tour Dates in 1997:
June 21
San Francisco, California
Benefit Concert for the Shree
Haidakhan Babaji Charitable
and Research Hospital. Venue
to be announced.
Contact: 818-991-8645
June 24-26
Rural Malmo, Nebraska at Haidakhandi Peace Center.
Contact: 402-642-9238, fax: 402-642-5240.
E-mail: margdevi@aol.com
June 28-30
Crestone, Colorado at Haidakhandi Universal Ashram.
Contact: 719-256-4108.
To attend any of these functions, please call the contact
number and find out the requirements well in advance.
Photograph of Shri Maha Muniraj by Kathleen Vrana.
Sponsored by the American Haidakhan Samaj.
HEALING
Boys Wi II ,Be Boys,
But for Long
A boys puberty is a time to prepare him for
the responsibilities of adult life
BY DEVANANDA TANDAVAN, M . D.
UBERTY IN BOYS PROC-
eeds about the same as in
girls, except the changes
are more external due to the
differences in anatomy. On the
average, puberty begins between
12 and 13 but may occur as early
as nine. In some cases, the
process of growing into man-
hood may be delayed as late as
the 14th and 15th years.
Parents should help prepare their sons
before puberty on what to expect. One of
the first signs is some swelling of the mam-
mary glands. This often leads to a brief but
very sore and swollen nipple area. It gradu-
ally recedes and returns to a normal flat-
ness, and the underlying muscles become
harder and more prominent. This period of
change may take up to one and half years
to complete, but some boys may not go
through this phase.
Concurrently hair will begin to grow in
the pubic area and the armpits. The sweat
glands in these areas will tend to produce
copious amount of sweat, more than in
females. The facial hair starts as a very fine
fuzz; and in late puberty it may not only be
more coarse but also be quite visible. The
boys take a lot of teasing about their
"peach fuzz" from their peers and adults.
The gangly gait and awkwardness pro-
duced by the rapid growth of the lower
extremities may be much greater than in
girls. But what boys lack in grace they
make up in speed. The musculature of the
upper body is emphasized with a square-
ness to the shoulders and hardness of the
muscles, unlike the soft curves of the fe-
males. Another change that opens the boys
to teasing and ridicule IS the change in the
voice. It begins by becoming deeper and
deeper in pitch, but it is not a smooth tran-
sition. The boy may be speaking or reciting
in class when the voice 'breaks" and re-
turns to its soprano pitch momentarily. This
may occur with concomitant
blushing, something which
seems to develop slightly more
with boys. Of course" this oc-
curs at all of the inopportune
moments, again leading to teas-
ing and moderate discomfort.
One of the earliest changes
develops in the sex organs. The
testicles tend to enlarge. It is
normal for one tp be larger than
the other, and it is also normal for one to
hang, wben standing, lower than the other.
The male organ is made of erectile tissue
and when it is filled with blood becomes
hard and erect. This may occur at any time
without provocation or apparent cause.
This leads to blushing and teasing which
should be understood by everyone.
As the external organs are growing in
prominence there are internal hormonal
changes occurring which eventually lead to
the production of semen. There may be
spontaneous, sometimes nocturnal, emis-
sions. Yogis say this is perfectly normal, but
masturbation should be discouraged. Boys
should be taught to save the sacred seed
and ,trained prior to puberty to re-channel
sexual desire by learning to transmute their
vital energies and sacred fluids.
Other internal changes are in the boys
perception of girls. The childhood joshing
of "those dumb girls" changes to a new
appreciation for them. But the
force must be focused on studies and spiri-
. tual pursuits. The sexual drives and im-
pulses are natural but should be confined
within a sanctified marriage. Celibacy until
will enable the boy to merit a
good wife and a happy life together.
,,-
DR. TANDAVAN, 77, retired nuclearphysi-
cian and hospital staff preSident, lives in
where he specializes in alternative
healing arts. Visit his home page at the
HINDUISM TODAYWebsite.
EVOLUTIONS
DEPARTED: Dr. Cheddi Bharat dagan, 79,
Guyana's "man of the people," of a
heart condition, on March 6, 1997. Af-
ter a lifetime leading
the struggle for in-
dependence from
British rule, Dr. Ja-
gan was elected the
first democratic
president in 1992.
He devoted his en-
tire life in service to
his people, who ad- Father of nation
mired his energetic
ways, wit, humor and brilliance.
CONFESSED: Abigail Boettcher, the
reigning pork spokesperson of Buena
Vista County, Iowa, that she is a vege-
tarian. A cheerleader,
athlete and daughter of a
pig farmer, the veggie-
loving college freshman
stunned 200 assembled
hog producers when she
told her secret in a
farewell speech at the
annual banquet. Pork Queen
ELECTED: Sister Nlrmala, 63, a former
Nepalese Hindu brahmin who convert-
ed to Roman Catholicism, by 132 se-
nior nuns to replace the ailing Mother
Teresa as the leader of her religious or-
der, church authorities said. Sister Nir-
mala was trained as a lawyer before
joining the Missionaries of Charity.
Since 1979 she has led the contempla-
tive wing in which nuns devote their
lives to meditation.
RECOVERING: From a stroke, Richard
Alpert, a k a Ram Dass, is partially
paralysed, with some speech loss but
mentally well. A Harvard University
colleague of LSD guru Timothy Leary
in the '60s, he met his spiritual master,
Neem Karoli Baba, in India in 1967.
His book Be Here Now sold over one
million copies and introduced many
Westerners to Eastern spirituality. His
Hanuman Foun-
dation developed
the "Prison-
Ashram Project" to
help inmates with
their spiritual
growth, and the
"Living-Dying Pro-
ject" to provide
support for con-
scious dying. Ram's guru Baba
44 H.INDUISM TODAY JUNE , 1997
PHOTOS, FROM TQP: RAME SH D . KAL I C H AR RAN ; HARRY BAUME RT ( COPYRI G HT 1997 THE DES
MOI NE S REGI ST E R AND TRIBUNE COMPANY, RE PRINTE D WITH PERMISSION); BALARAMDAS
SEE OUR ELEVEN PAGE ADVERTISEMENT ON THE INTERNET
http://www.vedic.net
OR FAX INQUIRIES To: 1-310-837-0243 (USA)
.l.JTh.T(nISM-':;"'- --
Dhill aurma Graphics CD
For the Mac. Reg. $249. Special offer for HT readers, only $199
1,600'" images reflecting
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Patterns & Borders
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CD. Fall in love with the visual magic of Bharat and
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Here it is- the Hindu art CD
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graphics and some rare Raj-
put scans. Great graphics for an ashram bulletin, a
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Aums
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DMNE-LOVE-
CONSCIOUSNESS
WEEKEND INTENSIVE
with the Divine Guidance of
H.D. Swami Prakashanand
Saraswati
<1 . '-.-""'-" £ ' This is a rare opportunity to attend a special intensive program
personally conducted by Shree SWamiji. Shree SWamiji teaches the path to
Radha Krishn according to the raganuga tradition of Vrindaban based on our
"' .n......-., holy scriptures. Thousands of souls have been Graced by Shree Swamiji and
their minds have been established in pure devotion to Radha Kt'ishn.
For a brochure or registration in/ormation:
International Society of Divine Love
Shree Raseshwarl Radha Rani Temple, Barsana Dham
400 Barsana Rd. , Austin, Texas 78737-9075 USA
July 4-6, 1997
Barsana Dham
Austin, Texas, USA
Programs include:
• Morning &. Evening Arti
• Devotional Chanting Meditation
• Yog Asanas &. Special Relaxation Course
• Lectures by Shree Swamiji
Ph: (512) 288-7180 • Fax: (512) 288-0447 • (http://www.isdl.org)
(Comfortable ashram accommodations and
vegetarian meals induded in course fee.)
The Master Course, Level One By Satguru Sivaya Subramuniyaswami
An illustrated children's course in seven books, teaching love and worship of
God Siva. Based on the holy Vedas, and presented in the context of tradi-
tional Hindu philosophy, culture, family life and values. Excellent resource
for parents and teachers. Subjects include God and Gods, our soul, the world,
right conduct, karma, dharma and reincarnation, each presented in simple
language. The course has been adopted by the Fiji school system, and it is
used extensively in numerous other countries-Malaysia, Singapore and
Mauritius among others. Each book is presented in three or more languages.
Prominent swamis, pundits, scholars and lay persons of all sects have given
enthusiastic endorsements.
Paperback, beautifully illustrated, 8
1
/2" x 5
1
/2". Each book, approx. 150 pg.
English-Hindi-Tamil version: US$lS (USA or Canada), $20 (world) ship-
ping included. Available from:
107 Kaholalele Rd • Kapaa, Hawaii 96746-9304 USA
Tel: 1-800-890-1008, ext. 238Fax: 1-808-822-4351



E-mail: sadhaka_haranandinatha@hinduismtoday.kauai.hi.us· Web: httpllwww.HinduismToday.kauaLhi.us/ashram/
Also available' English-Hindi-Tamil version: UK: Hinduism Today, tel: 0171 9379163, fax: 01714601819 email:
easan1@aol.com. Fiji: Then India Sanmarga lkya Sangam, Mr. N. K. Naidu: tel: 679 660199, fax: 679 660 761' English-
Malay-Tamil version: Malaysia: Uma Publications, tel: 603 441 1617, fax: 603 4419395' Sanatana Dharma Publications,
tel: 033319242' Singapore: Sanatana Dharma Publications, tel: 957 66 012' English-French-Tamil version: Mauritius:
Saiva Siddhanta Church, tel: 230 412-7682, fax: 230-412-7177 • Denmark: Abhirami Amman Temple clo Mrs. V. Sri
Palan, teVfax: (French or Tamil spoken) 45 9718 0192.
Surrounding Iraivan Temple is an
extraordinary botanical garden par-
adise. providing an area of
contemplative. natural beauty.
Pilgrims enjoy groves of plumeria.
konrai. hibiscus. heliconia. native
Hawaiian plant species and more.
At the entrance to the 51-acre
sanctuary is a forest of healing
rudraksha trees. Send US$ 12 to
purchase a single-bead necklace of
a sacred rudraksha. receive as our
gift another bead to plant and sup-
port the Iraivan Temple project.
1-808-639-8886
http://www.HinduismToday.
Kauai.hi.us/ashram/lraivan.html
RUDRAKSHA
FOREST
SAN MARGA IRANAN TEMPLE
107 KAHOIALELE ROAD
KAPAA. HI 96746-9304 USA
A TEMPLE BUILT TO LAST I. 000 YEARS
Ready for,
60 More
India's VIPs praise
. Brahma Kumq.ris
-,
By M. P. M I;)HANTY, NEW DELHI
HE PRESIDENT AND PRIME MINISTER
of India headed a list of digni-
t.aries gathered February 9, 1997, at the
.:-World finale to the Brahma Kumaris'
-60th year celebrations. They were there to
honor the ' dedication and determination
with which the organization has pursued its
goal of creating a "value-based society"
through social, spiritual and educational
programs. It began in the 1930s when its
fopnder, Prajapati Brahma, had a vision in
wnich he saw a society, of spiritual love and
perfect harmony. Creation of such a society
became his life's goal and is now that of his I
thousands of followeJs. ,
Dr. Shanker Dayal Sharma, President of
India, opened the event at Indira Gandhi -
Staruum. He said, "Moral character and con-
duct, wgich are the foundations of peaceful
life and-society, should be cultivated for our
individual and world welfare. A\ country
does not becElme great by men of mean
character but by persons of noble character
and integrity. They do not merely preach
but" practice values like truth, nonviolence,
nonpossessiveness and fearlessness-all on
the basis of realizatien of the immortal na-
ture of the soul." He expressed deep appre-
ciation for their work.
Mr. H. D. peve t;owda, Prime Minister of
j
India, launched "Project Positive Change" at
the afternoon youth session. He told the
youth that at a time whe'n we enjoy a high-
er standard of living there is a lower stan-
dard of life. Mothers, scriptures and the lives
and works of great people should guide our
life, thoughts and actions, which are increas-
ingly being contaminated by material con-
siderations, violence,an\f vices.
Rajyogini Dadi Pi'akashmani, administra-
tive chief of the Brahma Kumaris, presided
over the conference. She told the group that
the inculcation of divine qualities and the
demolition of devilish traits in ones thoughts
. and deeds was the key to a balanced and
blissful life. This was:t>ossible through spiri-
-..iual practices and Rajyoga meditation. -
Mr. Feodar Starcevic, director of the Unit-
ed Nations Information Center in New Del- I
hi, spoke on the years of cooperative effort
between the UN and the Brahnla Kumaris
in the areal! of peace, education, develop-
ment and promotion of values. Others who
addressed the conference were Jagatguru
Balagangadharanathaswami, head of Adi-
chuchanagiri Mutt, Karnataka, and Brahma
Kumari' chiefs Rajybgini Dadi Janki, Chan-
dramani and Hriday Mohini.
The'core of the Brahma Kumans' teachings
and mission was set forth by the group's
f0under, Prajapita from a series of
visions and spiritual experiences. While Hin-
du-based in their beginnings and teachings,
and still worshiping God as Siva, the Brahma
Kumaris have declared themselves an inde-
pendent reli,gion. Eight thousand full-time
workers oversee 4,000 branches and 400,000
fGllowers in sixty countries. Together they
work at the individual and social level to cre- .
ate a peaceful, loving v.:orld and to be a van-
guard of the impending new age of peace,
foreseen by Prajapita as the "Gol(;Ien-aged
Deity World" -the Sat Yuga of Hindu philos-
ophy. Global Headquarters: Pand1fv Bhawan,
M?unt Abu, Rajasthan, 307 501, India. ...'
vanguards of es: Dignitaries honor Dadi Prakashmani (center) and other BKchiefs
Pr.omenade: Vendors vyingfor sales and shoppers searchingfor bargains--all's fair here!
'"
,
COMMERCE
A .Colorfully Crafted' Fair
.. Once a year, India celebrates a festival of arts
By SHIKHA MALAVIYA, MINNESOTA
S OUR TAXI RUSHES THROUGH THE
dusty streets of Delhi, my heart goes
pitter patter. We are gQing to the fair!
fair my uncle as, "a cul-
tural kaleidoscope of music, dance and art."
Within minutes we cross the border, enter.
the state of Haryana, and
. . pull'/into small town of
Surajkund. Colorful banners -
wave back and forth in the
bright winter sky. We park
our car along with a sea of
others and follow the stream
of people toward an intri-
catelY-9afved wooden gate
flanked' by two turbanned
men playing the tutuhi, tra-
ditional horn. The Su.w-
jkund mela beckons'us in all
its splendor.
. /
'"
ously bargruns for an ornate hand-embroi-
dered bedsheet. "I will only give Rs250," she
avows. I smile knowingly as the craftsman
gives in and says, "Okay. But only this time! "
What is a crafts fair without a bargain?
Standing on a hill, r survey stalls dis-
guised as thatched huts spilling over with
everything from colorful
Kashmiri shawls to marble
statues. The mela, hosted by
Haryana Tourism, began in
The mela, or fair, spreads Let's talk: A Tamil Nadu
across a hilly terrain. Walk- artist's display of deities
. 1987 to promote and expose
the many arts and crafts of
India. The Surajkund Mela
Authority, a non-profit orga-
nization comprising the
Union Ministry of T011fism,
and the Deyelopment Com-
missioner of Handlooms
,!nd Handicrafts, is res-
ponsible for organizing the
ever-successful eve'nt. With
award-winning craftsmen
their wares from ing along its dusty paths, I
feel as if I' have entered a 'bustling village.
Each year the mela has a t.lJ.eme which is
represented by a state in This year
Gujarat has tIie honors, and it has added to
the n1.ela's village charm' by designing a
street replete with authentic havelis (village
mansions) decorated with c.arved bal1,ls-
trades, antique wooden doors and embroi-
dered wall hangfngs. People crowd around
the havelis where. craftsmen proudly display
their goods. The woman in of me furi-
f
every part of India for the past eleven years,
is it any surprise that-word of the Surajkund
. mela has' crossed the Indian Ocean? Jam-
packed With tourists in the fifteen days that
it runs, an estimated 20-40,000 vis-
it on an average day. . ,
So how do they do it? The planning starts
nine months in advance. First the theme
state is' decided. Past states have been Ra-
jasthan (1989), West Bengal (1990), Kerala
(1991), Madhya Pradesh (1992), Orissa
,
(1993), Karnataka, (1994), Punjab (1995),
and Himachal Pradesh (1996). Most states
design an ornamental gate which is con-
at the entrance to the exhibition.
Next, the participants are selected from a
datil-base which mela authorities update reg-
ularly. The selection precess is critical, with
each participant allowed to participate only
three times and not more than two years in ,
a row: This year, 76 national award winners
and 22 state award winners filled the stalls,
ensuring top guality and creativity.
A sample of the variety at Surajkund: Em-
broidery comprising Banjara "gypsy" and
Bunni work in the form of bedsheets and ,.,
cushion covers (Rajasthan and Gujarat); tra-
ditional Kantha work in/the form of sari!>
(West Bengal and Tripura); Chikan embroi-
dery in the form of Salwar Kameez (Uttar
·Pradesh) ... just to name a few: In woodwork,
you'll find a dazzling array of sandalwood,
rosewood and cane from Punjab, South In-
dia and other states, carved into statues,
plaques, tables, chairs, treasure chests and
much more. And let's not 1'orget carpets:
Punja dhurries from Haryana; wool carpets
from Mirzapur and little rugs from Kashmir
p,erfect for meditation! You'll find oxidized
jewelry, colorful wooden toys, temple paint-
ings from Orissa .... The list goes on and on .
Working through the maze of stalls, I sud-
denly fimi myself in front of the -beautiful
Maheshwar Devta gate. Walking further, I
spot a group of men dressed in orange, their
turban-clad heads moving from side to side.
It is the Haryana Orchestra enthralling the
crowd with their mystical music and snake-
like ·dance. The Surajkund meta is well
known for its folk In naty.ashala, an
open-air theatre, dance and music groups
perform throughout the day. Today it is a
Rajasthani folk dance about Lord Krishna
and His Gopis, who are getting back at Kr-
ishna for His naughty antics.
After two hours of scoping the fqir, I spy
a stall displaying beautiful tantric motifs.
'Nle craftsman has come from Ladakh to
sell hand-painted scrolls with the eight sym-
bols of good luck and dragons painted on .
wood. I bargain for both)l scroll and a drag-
on flainting. By now, it is dusk rufd the
crowd is thinning. We arrive at the food
stalls to be greeted by a welcome feast. The
mouth-watering food from Punjab, South
India and Gujarat would satisfy even the
most discriminating pl}late.
By the. time we finish our meal, Suraj-
kund village is retiripg in a blanket of dark-
ness. Workers spray water on the,dirt roads,
getting ready for the thousands of soles that
will trample these trails tomorrow. As we
walk out the gate, my uncle looks at me
wit4 a glint in his eye and says, "So was I
right? Have you seen anythlng like this be-
fore'?" I smile and reply, "Sure I have. .. In
storybooks!'; ...'
JUNE, 1997 HI'NDUISM TODAY 49
/
MINISTER'S MESSAGE
Saroe sant-u niraamayaa
Saroe bhadrani pashyant-u
Eternal Partnership'
For a rfealthy SOCiety
Maa kashchid d-ukhfnaapn-uyaat.
"Mayall be happy, healthy, cultured, wise,
peaceful and reach the aim of perfection."
All includes women, who were, in ancient
times, equal participants in all affairs of
society and politie:s, shoulder to shoulder
with their husbands, like Arundhati, wife of
sage Vashista, and Kaikeyi who went to the
battlefield and saved her husband King
Dashrath, father of Ram. Later, when India
was invaded, it was essential for ladies to
remain cloistered at home, only doing
housework. Over time.this became·a way of
living widely acceptell by society for its
-Convenience in the division of work and for
the sake of the children's upbringing.
Men and women have equal rights and ciuties
in making a better world through high conduct
,
BY H . H. MA . YOGA SHAKTI SARASWATI
RIGINALLY, A LONG, LONG TIME AGO, THE ANCESTORS
the Hindus settled in the lush and spiritually corn-
land of India to pursue their continuous
. .
Men and women both should aspire to a
very high code of conduct to be able to give
right direction to future generations. If both
search for Divine Light and Wisdom. The warm,
ever-green and fruit-loaded land and climate was well
suited for their purpose, was the search for knowledge.
The Sanskrit name of India, Bhaa-rat, explains i\ very well:
Desirous of Seeking Divine Light. ,
In those days our rishis and sages were married. All work .

•••
'
. ..

partners are good, loving, caring and share
the joys and responsibilities equally, noth-
ing can go wrong. The problems arise when
one partner is idle, bad-natured or has a
bad character: From childhooa both men
and women should be trained to be effi-
cient in work and should develop good na-
ture, habits and character through studies
and practices. One learns to become a good
citizen through the "kiss and care" of the
parents. A citizen is one who cares for her
"
. ..
was shared. W<.?men equal participants in religious rites,
and all activities, like farming. Neglecting the children, which
should never happen, was'not an issue, because the family
business was. in the home. My firm opinion is that men and
women have eternal partnership in this universe. Beth have played
equal parts in the promotion of civilization, culture an<;l knowl-
edge. All men and women have roles to play in this world. All lives
are born with a purpose. That Divine Purpose is to explore the
limits of consciousness which by nature is infinite and limitless.
Are not all men and women children of the Infinite?
Does not history prove that civilization has been promoted by
individual and collective little acts of love and hate? A boy or a girl
both get a place in the womb of the mother, and both have claims
upon the heritage ofthe father. Does this not clearly indicate that
both have equal rights and duties to each other and as members of
the group? A society also functions like an organism, and parts of
the bpdy need to remain healthy and strong singly to promqte the
geneFal health and activities of the whole body. As two eyes, ears,
hands and feet cooperate fully in the survival of the body, so do JIlen
and women both need to function individually and collectively for
the over-all prol!lotion of the world, which isjust a collection of
smaller social, religious, cultural and geographical units.
If we find a hole, a drawback in our society, in which society
failed to provide comforts, opportunities and justice, both sexes
are equally responsible. Nothip.g has ever been achieved in the
wbrld without a price. Necessary preparations must be made to
pave the road of the future. If s$ewhere we lacked in our efforts,
both men and women are responsible for that shortcoming.
Instead of grieving at the past, we should focus our attention on .
a better future. Leave no stone unturned. Time, mind, money and
resources are the wealth of the universe, all to be utilized to create
a better world fOJ tomorrow. God has done a great justice by giv-
everyone equal time and energy. Let us promote the whole
society, and we will have equal shares of joy. The Vedas and Upan-
ishads lay stress on the word saroa, which means all. It includes
women as well as men. The mantras boldly proclaim: '
. Saroe bhavantu sukhinah
50 HINDUISM TODA·Y J t.r"NE , 1997
country. Husband and wife must care for each other. There w.ill be
changes and you can do anything you want. But be prepared for
the consequences, which should not be hurtful to anyone.
Tliere is so much negative publiclty today given to the evil side
of our society. Crimes become the news of the day and this in turn
engenders more negafive behavior. Instead let us focus on the fam-
ily. Everything begins with a loving family. All,should aspire to live
up to the high ideals expressed in this prayer:
Om saha naa vavat-u; Saha na-u bh-unakt-u .
Saha, viryam karavaa-vahai
Tejasvi-naava-dhita-masru maa vidvishaavahai
May God protect us. May God be pleased with us. ,
May we work together with vigor. May our studies illumine us.
May we have no contention or hostility between us.
This wisdom applies not only to the Guru and disciple relation-
ship but also to other partners of life. for the sake of personal
freedom, people have given up so much. I seel$o much loneliness
in America. Instead should be mutual trust, mutual affection.
Rama and Sita are the best examples-like two bodies, but merged
as one. Like two legs they move together, one after the other. For
this we will all have to make adjustments. Children also must be
taught how to adjust to the changing times. But it can be done. We
all have tc(work hard to maintain the harmony of our relationships.
MA YOGA SHAKTI, 70, a renunciate sannyasini, with five' centers in
India and two in USA, has taught yoga, dharma and transforma-
tive spiritual practice throughout the world for over thirty years.
SATGURU SIVA YOGASWAMI 1872-1964
Siva Thondan N'dayam,
Edmonton
Jaffna's Sage Yogaswami's
1997 World Tour
And Birth Celebrations
In this 125th birth anniversary year of Sri LWka's
great spiritual leader, a small, gold-plated, five-metal
bronze statue of Siva Yogaswami begins a world tour
to join devotees at the many Sivathondan Nilayams
and more than 35 Tamil temples and commUnities.
As he travels, celebrations and satsangs will 'he held
in Canada, USA, Europe, Africa, Australia, New
Zealand, Malaysia, Singapore, Mauritius, Seychelles
and finally Jaffna, Sri Lanka, where the statue will be
permanently installed.
653 Chereton Cresent N.W.
Edmonton, Alberta T6R 2N2
Canada
Sivathondan N'dayam
434 Kankesanturai Road
Jaffna
Sri Lanka
Tel. 403-450-1048
Sri Sivayogaswamy's
Sivathondan Centre
2131 Lawrence Avenue East,
Scarborough, ONT M1R 5G5
Canada
TeL 416-293-4697
Sivathondan Centre
9 Saffron Drive
Hallam 3803, Victoria
Australia
TeL 03-9796-3964
Sivathondan N'dayam
256 B High Street North
Manor Park,
London E12 6SB
England
TeL 0181-552-6381
Sivathondan Nilayam
Chenkalady, E.P.
Sri Lanka
Yogaswami Center
5 Moor Road
6 Colombo
Sri Lanka
941580-584
1Oi'J
kauai.hi. us/ ashramIYogaswami.html
For details on Siva Yogaswami's world tour,
please call 808-639-8886.
TECHNOLOGY
·Bya.osmic
Design
Reviving the Hingu
s,cience of sacred space
,
ROM JANUARY 25 TO 29 MORE THAN
300 delegates and observers partici-
pated in the World Meet on Vastu in
design consciousness that pro-
vides wholesome environments,
peaceful interiors and balanced
energies within home or office
structures.
Chennai architect C. Ravindran
testified that he designed a facto-
ry which proved unsuccessful.
Adopting Vastu, he went back and.
implemented design changes that
reversed the flow of products
\hrough the factory, altered door
entrances, etc. The business now
enjoys growth and larger profits.
Kerala, South India, convened under the
direction of the renowned Dr. V. Ganapati
Sthapati, whose family lineage goes back
more than a thousand years. Other tradi-
ti<mal architects and builders mingled with
modern architects and research prefession-
als from India, USA, Australia, Hungary,
Finland and England. The Vastu Shastra,
also called Sthapatya Veda, is a class of an-
cient writings on and classified
as supplementary Vedic texts .. Vastu has en-
joyed an unbroken history of practice in
Kerala for thou?,ands of years.
Revivalists: Sthapati and Vastu Sabhanithnam
Australian delegate Ms. Kerry
Press explained her application of
the Chinese' science of Feng Shui
which; like Vastu, deals with the
subtle energy flows of buildings,
and is having a worldwide resur-
gence. Fellow Aussie architect
Alan Crocker reported significant
interest in Vastu residential de-
sign among Australians. American
Michael Peter 'Cain of Maharishi
The JIlost prevalent use of Vastu is for
Hindu temple architecture. No one in India
would commence construction of a sacred
structure without cGnsuLting a Vastu Shastri
for site selection, building orientation, size,
layout, doorways, wall thickness and loca-
tions, size of icons, efc. Even outside India,
sthapatis (architects) are invariably brought
in from J;ndia as consultants for new temple
./ . .
constructlOn projects.
But Vastu Shastras deal with much more
than temple construction. Said Dr. S.P. Sab-
harathnam, "It is an ever-relevant and fruit-
ful science capable of revealing the inner
structure and inherent nature of a sub-
stance. It is the science of space and time, of
number and numerical order, of letters and .
orthography, of proportions and proportion-
ate Vastu/aims not
only at; creation, but also -at meticulous
preservation and maintenance. And by over-
coming the possibility of destruction, it
leads us to the point of eternal existence."
Many attending the seminar are practic-
ing architects, eager to nurture professional
associations and learn about the Vastu their
clients are beginning to request. Ganapati
Sthapati noted, "The science lay unnoticed
ru\d uninterpreted during alien rule, which
stifled its growth and prevented it all along
from joining the mainstream of nation-
building activities." Now, he said, Vastu is
freely finding its rightful place in India as a
International University in Iowa, described
the school's program for Sthapatya Veda.
Dr. Prabhat Kumar Poddar's research into
biomagnetic fields revealed Vastu's inner
working. He demonstrated with an instru-
ment that subtle energy fields exist around
us at all times and that our bodies react to
these energies by the way we are oriented to
them, facing one way, then another-just as
Vastu predicts.
And the future of Vastu? A third of the
delegates were young computer-smart archi-
tects and engineers who need little or no
mental adjustmens> to see and utilize the
benefits of Vastu as a superio,r approach for
designing residences and office environ-
ments. I foresee a new diaspora of design
consciousness flooding the world. .."
By D EVA R AJAN, Cali.(omia
Building by the Book
and in harmony with their en-
vinmment for: centuries.
Mayan's Aintiram by Dr. S. P
Sabharathnam. This transla-
tion from the ancient Tamil
gives critical access to the ear-
liest exposition of Hindu C0S-
mological science in terms of
primal space souree, time,
rhythm, f01-m/structure and,.
matter.
l
IFETIME OF RESEARCH
by v. Ganapati Sthapati
is embodied in the Sci-
ence and Technology of
Vastu Shastra, released at the
January seminar. This work
emphasizes the theoretical or
science side of Vastu, rather
than its technical building as-
pects. Still, Vastu Shaswa is
abundantly illustrated with
schematics, drawings and ar-
chitectural plans to make the
application of the principles
evident through practical ex-
amples.
,
The science of Vastu is root-
ed in the Hindu cosmology of
the origin, structure and
space-time relationships of the
universe. The little material
pxeviously available on the
subject failed to penetrate its
depths. Sthapati adroitly pre-
sents the occult knowledge of
the silpis. They were the mas-
ter builders who created the
great temples of India, the
splendorous palaces of kings
and dynasties, and the scien-
<
'"
tific layout of towns and vil-
lages that remained in balance
52 TODAY J U'NE, 1997
A second book released at
the seminar was the modem
Tamil and English versien of
SDIUt' CJhnJ'l'u of
SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY
OF
VASTU SHAsTRA
IR.. defined. r .. interpreted and iIIullretedl
By
Dr. V.Gnnapali St1mpati.
El
': '.
. 11 I
. I : . - -
• .l I ..
Both books are availaDle
from Vastu Vedic Research
Foundation, Plot AI, H.I.G.
Colony, New Road,
Thiruvalluvar Nagar, Chennai,
600041, Tamil Nadu, India.
D. R.
Vastu Shastra: A modern pre-
sentation of the ancient science

Experience of a Lifetim
II •• If I were asked under what sky the i;,uman mind has
fully developed and has found solutions to some of the
greatest problems of life, I would poi lilt to India . .. 11
- Max Muller
tours meet the special
requirements of groups,
organizations, and
individuals. We work
closely with you to
tructure an itinerary
that results in smooth
travel and total
satisfaction.
169-12 Hillside Ave.
Jamaica, NY 11432
Tel: 718-291-9292
{
RESEARCH
Yoga
Online
THE YOGA RESEARCH
I Center is spearhead-
ing a movement to pro-
mote a spirit of unity
among yoga practition-
ers and organizations.
Founded by Dr. Georg
Feuerstein in 1996, the
Center is located in
Lower Lake, California,
and now publishes an
international newsletter
called Yoga World for
Western yoga teachers
and students. The jour-
nal's purpose is to reach
those interested in
learning about the vari-
ous aspects of
yoga as part
of their per-
c sonal spiri-
g tual quest.
-=-The
'"
'"
..
:z;
'" o
It
o
0:
<
'"
~
'" 0:
<
o
o
,.
COMPUTING
Center's website (mem-
bers.aol.comlyoga
resrchl) introduces the
three major cultural
branches of Hindu Yoga,
Buddhist Yoga and Jaina
Yoga and includes an ar-
ticle explaining these
and other forms of yoga
entitled "Forty Types of
Yoga." Here you can
register for lectures and
workshops, subscribe to
the newsletter, become a
member of the Center
and enroll for a 200-
hour correspondence
teacher's training course
on the classical yoga of
Patanjali. Also found are
links to yoga-related
web sites and affiliated
organizations. In con-
junction with Sava Mul-
timedia Productions,
the Center is work-
ing on a multime-
dia CD version of
Dr. Feuer-
stein's bib-
liography
of yoga re-
sources, "Shamb-
hala Encyclopedia
of Yoga." You can
link to a sample
on SMPs site.
Kit will allow users to
enter, edit and print text
and graphics in three
fonts: Devanagari
Gates is greeted by India's Prime Minister Gowda
BUSINESS
India's New GatesWay
M
ICROSOFT CORP. CHAIRMAN BILL
Gates urged Indian programmers to
think globally during his three-day
visit in March. He told the heads of
500 Indian software firms in Bombay, "India has
what it takes to participate in, even to shape, the
future if it makes the necessary investments now.
It must build a national telecommunications in-
frastructure, develop a robust domestic software
industry, provide Internet connectivity for the
consumer and invest in education." Gates said his
company was committed to establishing India as
a global pool of talent and resources in computer
software. He encouraged the software chiefs to
invest heavily in research and development.
I
most populous state, Ut-
tar Pradesh, would
r ~ spend about US$l bil-
,_ lion in two years
NONVIOLENCE
Syber
Serenity
F
AR TOO FEW WEB-
sites are created to
promote the concept of
ahimsa, or nonviolence.
Prince among the pages
of peace is the Ahimsa
Home Page (wizard.netl
-ethanlahimsa.htm).
Its purpose is to provide
links to the best Internet
sources on the subject.
Here you can find scrip-
tures about nonviolence,
compassion and vegetar-
ianism from Hindu,
Christian and Jain
sources. Relevant Hindu
verses can be found a-
mong 108 complete
chapters of the Tamil
classic Tirukural, trans-
lated in English. The
Hindu and Jain vjews
are well represented in
essays on ahimsa, main-
ly one by Swami
Sivananda Maharaj and
a piece dedicated to Ma-
hatma Gandhi by Arun
M. Sannuti entitled,
"Vegetarianism: The
Road to Satyagraha."
Three Indian
Fonts
for Hindi, ~ . r a : . ! ~ : ~ on computers
clude three Apple®
TrueType fonts, a De-
vanagari typing tutor
and the Hindi Learning
Stack 1.0. The kit will al-
low users to create and
view Indian language-
based websites and
Quick Time movies.
Claris Corp. is at http://
www.claris.com or fax
1-408-987-3932.
"7\ PPLE COMPUTER
!=\announced in Feb-
ruary software for six
North Indian languages
for shipment in April.
The Indian Language
Marathi, Nepali
and Sanskrit;
Gurmukhi for
Punjabi and Gu-
jarati. Apple said a
study showed that the
government of India's
HINDUISM TODAY
107 KAHOlALELE ROAD
KAPAA, HAWAIi 967"6-930"
ADDRESS CORRECTION
REQUESTED
and peripherals if
OS-level Hindi-
based computing
was possible. The
US$1l9 software
will be distributed by
Claris Corp. and will in- A place for peace on the web
.----.-.
*********************** AUTO 3-DIGIT 959
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PARADISE CA 95969-5969
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