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HINDUISM Tou<y was founded on January 5. 1979, by Salguru Sivaya Submmuni-
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PUBLISHER: Satguru Sivuya Subramuniyaswnmi
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EDITOR-IN-CHIEF: Acharya Palaniswami
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FEBRUAij,Y, 1997
IN T E'R N AT lOoN A L
Rights: Tribals Walk Out on the UN 17
Cover Story: What a Day It Was! 22
Disputed Treasure: The Last Letters of
Mahatma Gandhi 26
Biography: How a Mahatma Lived 28
Community: Hindus Cokmize Portugal 34
Crisis: RSS Helps at Massive Air Crash 36
Reconcllation: Muslims and Hindus Work
Together in Bangladesh 52
Serving: TLC at a.school for the Blind 52
. LIFE-STYLE
Insight: :J6 Classic Hindu Icons !O
Business: McDonald's Invades India 40
Cinema: "The Makin.,g of a Mahatma" 35
Music: Rural Instrumentals and
• Spiritual Hymns on CD t7
Food: Veggie Meals on Campus 48
Art: Goddesses Maligned ·49
Trhnds: Beedies Are Smokin' in the US 49
OP1NION
Publisher's Desk: ~ a r e the Rod
and Save the Child 6
Editorial: Religion IEvolves, Too 8
My Turn: Enough With £erand Violence 10
Letters I 14
Astrology: Gandhi's Ruling Stars 36
Healing: Midlife Crisis for Men? 44
Minister's Message: Truth Prevails 50
DIGESTS
.Quj)tes A 'Quips
Q ~
Briefly .
9 Evolutions
11 Digital Dharma
20
44
54
• COVER (clockwise): Student relaxes at a roadside stall near Ahmedabad law college; a
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Bhave Ashram; busy street in Varanasi; a Kodava wedding in Karnataka. See pages 22-24. http-.II ... .HlntluIlmToday.kauaLbl.ua!
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PUBLISHER'S DESK
Spare Rod
and the. Child
Corporal punishment is not discipline, nor is it
an means of guiding young ones' behavior
B Y. SAT G U R U S I V A Y A SUB RAM U N I Y A S W A M I
HERE IS NO GREATER GOOD THAN
child. Children are entrusted to
parents to be loved, guided and
for they are the future of
future. However, children can be
a challenge to raise up int!? good citizen-
ship. There· are many positive ways to
guide them, such as hugging, kindnessl
time spent explaining, wise direction
and setting the, of what you
want them to become. Most children
were adults not so many years ago, in
previous births. The·mind they worked
to develop through the great school of experience is. still there, as
are the results of their accomphshments and failures. 1hey have
been reborn to continue to know, to understand and to improve
themselves and community they are born into. Parents can
or inhibit this process of evolution. They have a choice. .
There are six chakras, or centers of consciousness, above the
muladhara chakra, which is'the center of memory, at the base of
the spine. Above the muladhara lies the chakra of reason. Above
that is willpower. are seven chakras below the muladhara:
the first being fear, below it anger and below that jealousy. The
choice of each individual parent is to discipline the child to advance
him or her upward-into reason, willpower and divine love-"'or
into fear, anger, distrust, jealousy and selfishness. (per-
sonffi..preservation without regard for the welfare of others).
Beating, spanking, pinching, slapping children and inflicting
upon their astral bodies the vibratiop of angry words are all sinful-
ly destructive to their spiritual unfoldment 8.!:d their future. Par-
ents who force their child to fear and hate them have lost their
chance to make him or her a better person by talking, because
they have closed the child's ears. Those who beat or pinch or hurt
or slap or whip their children pre the enemies to religion because
tli'ey are pushing the next generation-linto lower consciousness. Is
that religious society? No. Such h:ehavior is not even common in
the animal' kingdom. It's below the animal kingdom. But that is
what we face in the woild today. That helps explain why there are -
so many problems in this modern age.
Sadly, in this day and age, beating the kids is just a way of life
in many families, Nearly everyone was beaten as a child, so they
be'at their kids, and their kids will beat their kids, and those kids
will beat their kids. Older brothers will beat younger brothers.
Brothers will beat sisters. You can see what families are creating in
this endless cycle of violence: little warriors. One day a war will
come up, and it will be easy for a young person who has been
6 HINDUISM, TODAY. 1997
beaten without mercy to pick up a gun
and kill somebody without conscience,
and even take pleasure in doing so.
What kind of a society do we have?
In the US today, a murder is committed
every 21 minutes, an assault every 29
seconds, a rape every 5 minutes. A man
beats his wife every 12 minutes. Will
the violence ever stop? No. It can't. The
anger has to go someplace.
I recently attended a ceremony in
which criminals being released from the
Kauai jail gave testimony before leaders
of the community that they would not
repeat their crime. With tears in their
eyes, all said they had been beaten by
their familY' in early life, driven out. of
the home, into drugs, excessive alcohol
and into crime and finally jail. Each one
had the same sad story to tell.
I instruct the lay missionaries of our
fellowship: "Talk to the children., ask if
their parents beat them and then talk to
the parents. At first they will say "Oh,
once or twice." But if you persist, you
may find it's much worse than that.
Think about it, even if a cnild is only hit
once a month, that adds up to hundreds
of times over 15 or 20 years. I challenge,
child-beaters, "Would you beat some- .
body your same weight ap.d your same
height with the same anger?"'They
would say no, because that's against the
law. It's called assault. But hitting a little
kid-is that also not against the law'?
More and...tnore, it is.
In England, a 12-year-old boy who had been caned recently by
his stepfather made headlines in a human rights comt by challeng-'
ing British laws that permit parents to "use corporal punishment,
but only to extent of reasonable chastisement." Happily, the
trend is away from corporal punishment in schools. Every indus-
trialized country in the world now prohibits it in school, except
the US, South AfFica, Canada and parts of Australia. In the US, 27
states have bans, with legislation under way in many mOre. USA
Today wrote in 1990: ''As millions of children acress the USA pre-
pare to g0 back to school, teachers are laying down their
weapons-the' paddles they use to dole out corporal punishment. A
teacher does best armed only with knowledge. Corporal punish-
ment is a and obso.lete weaJ?on." In London, in response to a
move to remstItute beatmg, teacners say they will not cane even if
lobbying by conservative MPs is sUQcessful.
had Hindus tell me, "Slapping or caning children to make
them obey is just part of our culture." I don't think so. Hindu cul-
ture is a culture dfkindness. Hindu culture teaches ahimsa, nonin-
jury, physically, mentally and emotionally. It preaches against
himsa, hurtfulness. It may be British Christian culture-which.for
Concord and discord: The family on the left proVides intelligent
discipline. The one on the right offers only hurtful punishrnent.
• • •••• u . ................. ............ ....................... ................ ... ...... . ... . .. . ... .,J..........................•••
150 years taught Hindus in India the Biblical adage, "To spare the
rod is to spoil the child"-but it's not Hindu culture to beat the
. light out of the eyes of children, to beat the trust out of them, to
beat the intelligence out of them and force them to go along with
everything in a mindless and wind up doing a routine, uncre-
ative job the rest of their life, then take their built-up anger out on
their children and beat that generation down to nothingness. This
is certainly not the culture of an intelligent future.
Nor is an overly approach. A senior sadhu from the
Swami Fellowships 652-member order who visited us
recently echoed our thoughts on child-beating and emphasized
the need for firm, even stem, correction and teaching right fFom
wrong. "Parents these days fail to impart what is good and w1i.at is
not good. As a result, a vei.y crude society is being developed. "
I instructed my HINDUISM TODAY editorial staff to surf the In-
ternet's World Wide Web on the subject. They discovered dozens
of agencies dedicated to preventing child-abuse and teaching non-
hurtful alternatives. The Center for Effective Discipline (CED),
for example, provides a free packet of material, including' the pam-
phlet series, How to Raise a Well-Behaved Child (Phone: 1-614-
221-8829). For raising babies and toddlers it teaches not being
afraid to "spoil the-child," giving rewards for good behavior, dis-
tracting the child if he or she is doing something you don't like (or
removing him or her from the problem situation) and helping the
child develop good sleeping patterns. The preschooler pamphlet
advises taking time to listen, bestowing praise, setting a good ex-
ample, relating consequences to behavior, giving responsibilities
and dealing with misconduct with one minute of "time-out" (a
reflective time alone in a private room) for each year of the child's
age. The school-age edition stresses using logical consequences,
teaching children how to deal with angry feelings, taking .away
privileges when misbehavior occurs and helping youths plan bet-
ter behavior by talking with them call!lly and logically.
What, asks CED, does spanking teach children? "It teach
them to hit.others who are weaker and smaller when they have
problems, ... to solve problems with violence ... . Spanking often
makes children angry. It makes them feel they bad." CED also
notes that children are only likely to stop a behavior when the
spanking adult is nearby. Finally, CED reminds us, "Children
eventually get too big to spank. How will you diScipline your
teenager if spanking is the only way you deal with your child
now?" Its too late to talk then. Positive Approaches to DiScipline, a
CED booklet by K.F. McCormick, M.D. , makes a distinction that
many parents often miss. "Discipline is far more than punishment
for misbehavior. In child-raising, discipline refers to the teaching
of ethics, rules of conduct, the ability to plan, to Glefer gratification,
and to learn from .... The real goal of discipline is the
formation of an internal guide for behavior."
I advise parents: if you are guilty of beating your children,
apologize to them, show remorse and perform penance to atone.
Gain friendship back, open theif heart and never hit them
again. Open channels of communication, show affection. Even if
you never beat your children, be alert in your community of oth-
ers who do and bring them to your understanding that a happy,
secure family, as shown above, is free from violence.
Internet web sites on child abuse: e National Committee to Pre-
vent Child Abuse (best site) http://www. childabuse.orgte National
Child Rights Alliance, http://www.ai.mit.edulpeoplelellens/NCRN
ncra.html e ChildrenS Rights Froject, http://www.vix.comlmenlmitchl
crp/refl95.html e R.c.s Child Abuse Prevention Page; http://www.
dajton.netl-rculpepp/rcchildl e National Clearinghouse on Child
Abuse and Neglect Information: http://www.calihcomlnccanchl
FEBR UARY , 1997 HINDUISM TODAy '1
/
, ,
EDITORIAL
lions. Wrote Time, ''As we approach the third
millennilim, a new generation of theologians
SWift,ly Evolving,F2ith
and lay readers confront the lust, greed, be-
trayals and wonton destruction in Genesis
and declare, ' Let there be light. ", A story of
dysfunctional families and their all·too-hu-
man idiosyncrasies? From Christians, Jews
and Muslims? One British author and for-
mer nun, Karen Arm9trong, epitomized the .
reassessment when sRe noted that God is
Used to be that religion remaIned static from
year to year, but all that's changing
"not some nice, cozy daddy in the sky."
Speaking of Noah and the Flood, she offered
that God is "behaving in an evil way," effec-
tively introducing mankind to the idea of
genocide. calls Noah a "dam-
BY THE EDITOR
MARK 1\WAIN VISITED OUR ISLAND IN 1895 HE
_ ".m"',, observed, "If you don't like the weather, just wait
ten minutes." He was right; it changes ofter:, with rain
one minute and rainbows the next. While the American
humorist was speaking of matters meteorological, he could
weU have said the same about.things theological.
Case in point: October 23rds stunningly understated
ment from the Vatican that the Pope has officially, albeit tentative-
ly, accepted the Darwinian theory of evolution! It's true. At the
1996 Pontifical Academy of Sciences, a group of scientists advising
the Church on scientific matters, John Paul-II said: "[The] doctrine
of. 'evolutionism' [is] a serious worthy of investigation
and iI'\-depth study equal to' that of the opposing hypothesis." In
proclaiming the century-old theory as no longer incompatible with
Christian faith; John Paul II made a lot of people happy (one 75-
year-old follower cheered," It's very encouraging for me to see the
Church coming into,the 20th century instead of backing into the
19th") and sCIentists are chortling "it's about time." Qthers find the
proclamation worrisome. Atheists may agree with the Pope, but
they are warning the faithful (OK, the unfaithful) not-to celebrate.
American Athiests News (at http://www.atheists.org) announced:
" ... atheists and secularists should avoid the trap of false optiIl1ism,
b'elieving that...religiovs faith is some-
how crumbling before some inexorable
juggernaut of scientific enlightenment."
They even suggested that the Church :;:
would win big PR pciints for the move, §
and that this was its intent in makil)g
announcement on the eve of more
proof published in the journal Science
that l!fe on Earth goes back a billion
years old, twice the accepted history.
The athiest§ skeptically said: "If any-
thing, John Paul has adroitly turned a
potential disadvantage and embarrass-
ment into a remarkable success. He
has avoided the pitfalls made by bibli-
cal literalists and creationist-funda-
mentalists who increasingly find theI?- .
selves at odds with scientific finding and the secular world." To
him, the Catholics and Protestants are locked in a battle for souls,
and the Pope's move takes his Church to the higher ground, per- .'
mitting his flock's faith to agree with what most people believe.
Now you'd thinK that was enough of a shift in world religion for
one month. But you'd be wrong. ,On October 28 Time magazine
gaVe its cover story to Genesis, a-new, ten-part television series in
which Bill Moyers gathers dozens of key religious thinkers (includ-
ing one Hindu,) to discuss the Bible's first book. Instead of somnjf-
erous Sunday School sermonizing, this eclectic group courageously
heralded their contradictory and sometimes radical views to, mil-
8 HINDUISM TODAY, FEI\RUARY, 1997
aged surviver" who says nary a word about ai-l those drowning
around him, much less,Jrying to offer them a ride. .
Of a sudden, religion is fashionable, and even good for business.
Publisher's Weekly was so impressed with the sales of spiritual
books in North America that it started "Religion Book Line," a
twice-monthly color listing of religious titles and reviews'. In Holly-
wood faith is red hot on the 1997 big screen, with dozens of major
movies being released on the subject that has not been popular
since the 1950s. Religion, like just about everything else, is evolv-
ing at a new paQe, requiring our greater effort to keep up. Used to
be you could count on creeds staying much the same; and, like a
Remington typewriter, once you learned them, it was ·done. Now
it's a computer era, and just when you master Mavis Beacon's typ-
ing software, a 2.0 upgrade with fifty new-fangled features arrives.
This accelerated advancement in religion is just a more obvious
part of unseen tectonic religious movements around the world in
recent years. Some are menacing to conservative religionists, as
with the growing phenomenon of fundamentalism in all in-
cluding our own. Others hold high promise, among we
countJour here: the already-mentioned unofficial treaty being
drafted between science and religion; the powerful movement to-
ward pluralism (with an equally potent protectionist backlash); the
renewal of indigenous and pagan paths
(strongest now in Europe); and the return
to complex, inclusive views of Divinity.
You may have noticed these are all move-
ments away from one toward many., away
from dissidence toward cooperation. They
reflect, it seems, the kind of thing taking
place in many nations-whether' in music,
food or biology-where diversity and its
merits are being rediscovered. What does
I this all mean for Hindus? Well, for one
thing, it means. that we won't be hearing as
much nonsense about pagan practices. For
another, there will be fewer and fewer who
approach Sanatana Dharma with ill-in-
tended arrogance ancLdisdain. It also
means that we have more friends among
other faiths who understand our long-cherished inclusive values
and seek to build bridgeSTather than burn them. J\J.st today HIN-
DUISM editorial staff received a first-ever Divali greeting /
from the Catholic Bishop in Washington, DC.
Don't get too giddy about all this. Mark Twain was right about
the weather, but he negiected to mention that it works both ways.
If it's blue-sky sunny in Ha,waii, that too can change quickly and
visitors can end .1JP on the·beach, rain-drenched miserable,
having spent their life's savings on a trip to paradise gone awry. So
if you do like the theological climate these days, wait a while. It's
changing, all the time.

III"ES a IIIIPS
/
"In North India Hindus feel we are just non-Muslims;
, ih ,South Indi@ we feel we are Hindus."
New Delhi-dwelling Ram Swarup after his recent visit to Chennai
"Tell investors it's true, I invented a car that runs on
rainwater. Trouble is, the drought's lasted eight months."
"Whenever I have read any part of the Vedas, I have fe1t that some
unearthly and unknown light illuminated me. In the
teachings of the Vedas, there is no touch of sectarianism. It is of all
ages,\climes and nationalities and the royal road for the attainment
of the Great Knowledge." Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862) Ameri-
can naturalist, philosopher and writer
An Indian in an effort to advance im-
ported some chainsaws for farmers. 01ile tree grower walked into a
hardware store and asked to see them. Picking up one, he queried
the clerk;, "How many trees will this one cut in one hour?" "Oh,
that one will cut about five good sized trees in an hour," replied
EVERY THOUGHT IS AN ACTION.
EVERY ACTION IS A DEPOSIT. IF
YOU BORROW FROM IT. SOONER
OR LATER YOU HAVE TO
PAY IT BACK.
the clerk. "What about this one?" asked the forester. The clerk
replied, an intermediate model which cuts around ten
trees." ''And this one?" asked the farmer. "That's our best model. It
should cut at least 20 trees ih an hour," said the clerk. "I'll talCe it!"
Two days later, the farmer 'feturned and angrily complained, "This
saw is terrible. I could only cut three trees in one hour with it!"
The clerk responded, "I don't understand that. This is the best
model we cgrry. Wait a minute while I check it out." He pulled on
the rope, and the saw immediately started with a loud roa,;. "Hey,::
said the surprised farmer, "What's all that noise?"
DID YOU KNOW?
Zero Is Not Nothing!
MATHEMATICIANS RANK ARITHMETIC-
that simple scheme by which an infini-
tude of things can be described by a few
symbols-"among the most important
achievements of the human intellect."
The Hindus invented the modern system
along with the concept of zero, itself
lauded as "of the greatest importance
in the ·history of mathematics" and
of man's progress. Without noth-
ing, there would really be
s0mething to
about.
EVERYONE IN THE WORLD
HAS AN AUTOMATIC
TELLER MACHINE AND
A BANK CARD.
FEBRUARY, 1997 HINDUISM T0DAY -9
/
Loving Ganesa by Satguru
Sivaya Subramuniyaswami,
at once simple, deep and
practical, teaches ever so many
ways that Ganesas grace can be
attained by sincere devotion, song,
prayer and meditation to bring
greater harmony, contentmen£
and spirituality into ones daily life.
An 800-page illustrated resource.
$19.95 plus shipping (US $3.50,
Foreign $5) . Also in bookstores.
1-800-890-1008
http://www. HinduismToday.
kauai. hi. us/ashram
LOVING
GANESA
HIMALAYAN ACADEMY PUBLICATIONS
1 07 KAHOLALELE ROAD
KAPAA. HI 96746-9304 USA
BOOKS YOU CAN TAK E. SERI O U SLY
MY TURN
, /
Media's'Madness in
Sex and Violence
Wide exposure.to low-minded magazines,
books,' films and TV is our youth
BY SHYAM KUMARI AGARWAL
OES LIBERTY MEAN THE
to debase oneself
and in the process undo
the social fabric? The un-
censored and unbridled exhibi-
tionism of the lowest instincts of
human animality on the big and
small screen and in the. print
media, with.graphic illustrations
to add to the horror, is surely a
self-destructive trend. Today
most of us tolerate the wide exposure given
to sex and crime in films, TV and litera-
ture/ without effective protest. rbis silent
tolerance, even if unwilling, is a sort of
condoning and connivance. What society
tolerates today will surely overtake 'and
annihilate it tomorrow:
Would we allow strangers to force their
way into our houses, to use filthy language
and to unrobe and have sex in front of our
family?.surely not. Then how is it that the
silent and decent human majority has not,
in one righteous sweep of indignation, boy-
cotted and banned the scripts and sereen-
plays of the (ilm and TV producer-s 'and
porno writers who are vitiating the minds .
and hearts of yqung and old alike? How is
it that we allow our children to witness
numerous murders, rapes and vicious tor-
tures in shameless detail?
This is not a plea to curtail human liber-
ty of thought and expression. But why have
we crossed the limits? Why have we
fied decency, and why do suffer this
shameless exhibitionism? We are bound to
imbibe and assimilate what we see and
hear all the time, consciously, at least
subconsciously. All prudent people try to
protect their children from bad company,
but how is it that we allow them the bene-
fit of the worst type of company for hours
together through print and visual media'?
Crime graphs are rising with a rapidity
which is not at all baffling. Research in
many countries, stretched over many
stratas of society, has proved it
beyond any reasonab1e
When young people from well-
to-do families, with no criminal
backgrounds and for no obvious
reasons, loot, kill, torture and
rape, it is due in no small part
to the iililuence of this expo-
sure. This modern phenomenon
has become quite prevalent.
Is the collective world con-
science dead? Even the weakest and small-
est nation of the world vigorously defends
itself against an invasion: then what is.it
that holds the mightiest and most powerful
nations and peoples on earth from putting
out of business these merchants of obsceni-
ty and gore? Is it not a fatal inertia which
is surely and steadily corrupting and de-
stroying our moral purity?
Today the intellect of modern, shallow
and consumerist readers zejects all serious
reading. The great thinkers, be they Plato
or Aristotle, Emerson or Thoreau, are not
read by the modern masses. The daily
overwhelming dose of crime and'sex in the
print and visual media has so deadened
their intellects that they want larger and
larger doses of t11e poison. While sublimat-
ing and uplifting books find no publishE;TS,
sums are paid for publishing
the lives and experiences of serial-killers
and scamsters.
This modern malady which has gripped
even young children of seven or eight wqo
commit murders for a kick is not so baf-
fling after alL We know its .causes, yet do
nothing to stop the decay, to stem the rot, /
which is eating away all decency from the
psyche.
SADHIKA KUMAR! is a renunciate, teaching
and writing at Sri Aurobmdo International
Centre of EducaPion, in Pondicherry, India.

DIASPORA
Fijian Hindu lwlds smashed Siva deity in Suva's Nadera temple
FIJI
Christian Condones Attack
F
IJI ffiNDUS WERE OUTRAGED OVER A DIPAVALI-DAY
break-in at the Soni Samaj Temple in Nadi. Several Deities
were smashed, others were stolen. Damages totaled
US$25,000. Fiji's Prime Minister, Sitiveni Rabuka, condemned
the vandalism as "beastly If it was performed by any Christian
Methodist, we are all ashamed." A second temple break-in on
November 14 escalated tensions. Hindus were stunned when
Wesleyan Mission secretary, Sakeasi Butadroka, actually justi-
fied the attacks dur ing an interview with the Sun: "This is
God Jehovah's way of showing nonbelievers that it is time they
turn away from worshiping statues." He said Hindu festive ac-
tivity-meaning Dipavali- and work on the Sunday Sabbath,
were an offense against Christianity. '1 am not at all surprised
at the recent spate of temple break-ins," he concluded. To date,
no one has been arrested, nor have other Christian leaders in
Fiji or elsewhere issued statements rebuking Butadroka.
HIST Q RY
Aryan Invasion. Never Was.'
"7\ CRUCIAL INTERNATIONAL
r-=\October historians' confer-
ence held in Atlanta, Georgia,
. USA, reexamined ancient Indi-
an hIstory. It resolved that "Re-
cent archaeological discoveries
have fully established that there
was a continuous evolution of
civilization on the Indian sub-
continent from about 5000 BCE, I
that remained uninterrupted
through 1000 BCE; . . . no scope
whatsoever to support an 'Aryan
invasion' theory. The term Arya
in Indian literature has no racial
or linguistic connotations."
Vested interests in Western
academia protect the old theo-
ry, which permeates millions of
books and contemporary Indi-
an social theory. In 1995, one of
ijle India\; most knowledgable
and objective historians, Shiva
G. Bajpai, said, "the data against
the is specula-
tive." After recent investigation
he told HINDUISM TODAY, "I am
now convinced. There was no
invasion. I may present the
findings in a new framework at
the next World Sanskrit Con-
ference in Bangalore."
CLOCi.. l VISE FROM TOP: HINDUISM TODAY, APIwIDE WORLD PHOTOS,
HINDUISM TODAY, HINDUISM TODAY •
POP C U L T, U R E
. Michael Jacko's
India Debut
"7\ FTER CANCELLING HIS
. r-=\fIrst planned 1993 tour to
India, US singer Michael
Jackson fInally made it to Mum-
bai, much to the joy of his IRdi-
an fans. He donated $1.1 mil-
lion of his packed NovemBer
Mumbai concert (total pro-
ceeds $5.5 million) to a Shiv
Sena job program. At the
Oberoi, Michael asked his cook
to keep a strict veggy menu for
his party After leaving, a full
length mirror was found in his
room enscribed with the words
"India, I love you. In your chil-
dren I have seen the face of
God. You are my special love."
/
Hsi Lai Temple in California

Whoops!
B
UDDHIST MONKS WERE
unwittingly used to channel
money to the Democrafic Na-
tional Committee (NDC) at an
April fund-raiser at the Hsi Lai
Temple in California, according
to reports in Time magazine
and the Wall Street Journal.
Strangers gave ten monks and
nuns $42,200 cash, requesting
them to write checks to the
Party. In doing so they risked
the temple's tax-exempt status
by appearing to support or en-
dorse a political candidate. The
NDC kept the money. In a sim-
ilar case, the NDC returned a
$3ElO,000 contribution by Yo-
gesh Gandhi, founder of the
Gandhi Memorial International
Foundation, bycause he had no
visible source of the funds.
TRENDS & TRADITIONS
CROSS CULTURAL
Gap- Om de Cologne?
THE GAP INC. , A GIANT SAN
I Francisco-based chain
store (U8$2 billion annual sales),
has launched a line of products
with six new scents. One of
them, "am, a simple union of
sensual musk and spiritual in-
cense," has some Hindus in-
censed. A unisex perfume de-
signed by Indian expeFt Braja
Mookherjee, am is used in Gap's am tea lights and soaps
vegetable soap, lotion, sham-
poo, shower gel, massage oil and eau de toilette. HT's indepen-
dent survey thought the scents "cheap." H.M. Iyer, California,
said "am is sacred .... Would The Gap dare call a perfume 'Ten
Commandments' or 'Allah'? The Gap should rename its per-
fume; .. . not pollute a highly profound and spiritual concept."
FEBRUARY, 1997 HINDUISM TODAY 11
/

Mahavidyalaya resuscitates simple life and education in a big way
cate ancient Maharishi
ashrams" and is located on the
Krishna River near the remote
Venkataya forest reserve in
Guntur, Anm-a Pradesh. A kula
guru or Vedlc teacher and his
wife and family will live with
students in an austere setting
and teach a traditional curricu-
lum of basic Sanskrit, shastras,
ayurveda, astronomy, astrology
and more. Dwellings for nine
each will be built in
groups of ten around a central
welL A parishad will be three
such groups surroundin$ a
community center. The-com-
pleted 1,500-acre center will
have 16 parishads, a small hos-
pital, a research ,center, a sup-
. porting township, dairy, farm,
monastic quarters and, across
the river, a 200-acre forest
meditation sanctuary for reclu-
sives. The prospectus and fi-
nancial projection for the pro-
ject reveal a massive and finely
tuned plan. Contact: M.H.
Avadhani, No. 35, 7th Ave.,
Ashok Nagar, Chennai, 600
083, India.
EDUCATION
Mahavidyalaya
-
"7\ PROJECT IN SOUTH INDIA
J=\may prove to be a major
player-in the resurgence of
Vedic education for traditional
Hindu priests and pandits. The
Veda Vedantha Gurukula Ma-
Willl'JW grows 11 f eet a year
ECOLOGY
Tree Energy
COMMON WILLOW TREE
I properly cultivated can pro-
duce five to ten times more
wood per acre than any natural
forest. Experimental plantings
of hybrid plants by the State
University of New York are
demonstrating that, farmed on
sufficient scale, the wood is an
economical and clean-burning
alternative to oil for generating
electricity. The trees are cut
back every three years, then re-
grow rapidly from the stumps.
havidyalaya, under the
lorship of the Sankaracharya of
Sringeri, His Holiness Sri Sri Sri
Bharati Tirtha Swamy, will be
"the first of it kind in the
wOFld, an institution of excel-
lence bringing together .Vedic
education and facilities for in-
teraction with modern science."
The institution seeks to "repli-
INDIGENOUS PEOPLES
India's Tribal Resurgence
and marginaliza-
tion by established
Hindu society and
, predatory conver-
sion efforts by
Christian missions.
,The ashrams liter-
ature states, "Even
after decades of
planned develop-
ment, the forest-
dwelling vanavasi
ekes out a pitiable
existence, easy
victim to disease,
\ V JORKERS OF'
W Vanavasi
Kalyan Ashram
gathered in Jagad-
hari, Haryana, in
£eptember to re-
view the work and
goals of India's
largest organization
benefitting tribals.
The three-day con-
ference o( more
than 600 was
presided over by
Ashram president
Shri Jagdeo Ram
Oraon. Among the
Kalyan Ashram logo indebtedness, land
ashrams most successful efforts
is the Punargaman homecoming
program which has brought . '
thousands of tribals back to Hin-
duism from Christianity.
Kalyan Ashram has more than
1,000 full-time workers engaged
in 7,000 service projects across
the tribal areas of India. The 50
million tribals of India have
suffered from years of ne&lect
_ alienation and
exploitatiOl).. It is this voluntary
organization, having its roots in
this soil of Bharat, that can sin-
cerely embrace these people as
of our own blood, rather than as
objects of sympathy or museum
pieces." Contact: Vanavasi '
Kalyan Ashram, 35, Chandlal
Sinruti, G.D. Ambekar Marg
Wadala, Mumbai, 400 India.
ARCHAEOLOGY
Cave DraWings
I
N BHIMBETKA'S CAVES OF
Madhya Pradesh, India, over
700 rock shelters were recently
discovered. The shelters were
inhabited by man during the
Neolitlu't Age, making them
more than 10,000 years old.
Paintings found in over 500
caves are an invaluable record
of early India. They depict
hunting, dancing, music, horses,
elephant fiders, animal fights,
household scenes, bisons, tigers,
lions, elephants, deer and other
animals. In some caves, reli-
gious and ritual symbols are
found. The ancient artists used
red and white pigments, and
occasionally yellow and green.
Paintings of Bhimbetka caves
CULINARY ARTS
I
Spice Boom
M
USTARD, KETCHUP, SALT
and p,epper were your ,
only choices in many American
restaurants and homes 20 year,:f
ago. But by 1994 each AI}teri-
can was consuming 2.7 pounds
' of herbs and spices, up a pound
from 10 years earlier. Sharda N.
Singh, spice store owner in Ar-
lington; Virginia, says, "Every
year you see the difference." He
now imports tons of goods each
month to satisfy the demand for
exotic, health-giving savories.
Considering, for example, that
one ounce of nutmeg will sea-
son 3,000 donuts, "tons" is truly
an incredible amount of spice!
12 HINDUISM TODM:: FE\BRUARY, 1997
. CLOCKWISE FROM TOP: M.H. AVADHANI,
New from Blue Dove Press ...
• "This is an extraodinary
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• "Enlightenment, to me,
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To order or receive our free catalog, contact:
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E-mail: BlueDPress@aol.com
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
Po. Box 7-H
Lakemont, Georgia 30552
USA
Tel: 706-782-4723 • Fax 706-782-4560
http://web.infoave.net/-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.
Visit Barsana Dham ...
& Shree Raseshwari Radha Rani Temple
"It is a blessed land,
blessed by Shree Swamiji."
-VISITOR FROM COLLEGE STATION, TEXAS
"Yes, Vrindaban is
in America. "
-VISITOR FROM MUMBAI, INDIA
Join the thousands who have
pilgrimaged to Barsana Dham
from around the country and
the world. Come for one of our
magnificent celebrations or a'
quiet, devotional visit, and
experience the divine atmo-
sphere of the 200 acre ashram
and the beautiful nikunj
darshan of Shree Raseshwari
Radha Rani.
I ••••••• _ .......... ?
India through My Eyes
AS A TEENAGER BORN AND BOUGHT UP IN
and currently in India, I
find that India is a very religious place. I)e-
voted people can go to temples anytime,
anyplace, and absorb its serenity. This is a
freedom we do not enjoy in America. Al-
though many religious Indians and temples
are in America, the observer m1l}r note that
tl}ere is a "filter-out" effect no matter how
well the parents teach the kids. To join the
mainstream American society, the so-called
"melting pot" concept, something must be
compromised. many, it may be their In-
dian origin. The multi-racial, multi-cultural
environment in America tends to hammer
out the edges, and one tends to "fall in line"
in America. 'The undercurrent of caste is
similar to racism we experience in America.
I don't know which is worse: walking down
the streets of America and having someone
comment on my skiJ)-color, or walking down
the streets of India' and having someone,
comment on my being a brahmin.
/
ARVIND CHANDRAKANTAN
CHENNAI, TAMIL NADU, INDIA
"ramaa@giasmdOl.vsnl.netin
It's Bqtter. It's Worse.
ALTHOUGH I AM NOT HINDU BY PRACTICE,
HINDUISM TODAY is my favorite magazine,
the only one 'I persistent1y read and am not
only informed but also nourished by. I am so
grateful for all articles that evidence the
bridging of differenc6 between peoples, na-
tions, i'aces, religions, in recognition of hu-
liame needs and capacity to fulfill
them, by moving beyond !he barrier of
personality, through a strong spirimal focus
and genuine, unbiased service to each other.
HILECE ROSE
QUESTA, NEW MEXICO, USA
QUEL BEAU TRAVAIL! UNE REINCARNATION
resultat dune vie passee sans doute
ardue! Cest du genie! Les photos sont ravis-
santes, cest une fete! Nous meritons cela!
Nous voulons bien nons reincarner si cest
aussi joliment!
What beautiful work! [HT magazine is] A
golden reincarnation, the result of a former
life well lived, no doubt Brilliant workman-
ship. The photos are ravishing-a festival for
the eye . . We Hindus, deserved this. If we
can reincarnate as handsomely, then we
won't mind reincarnating/at all!
./
SHA'RAD J.S. SAHA!,
GUADELOUPE. WEST INDIES
"sharad@outremer.com
CONGRATULAlIfIONS ON NEWFORMAT! ;
I just saw the magazine a few hours ago
and thoroughly enjoyed going through it. It
is visually quite'stunning and much easier to
14 HINDUISM TODAY FE'BRUARY, 1997
:GETTERS
read. I the variety of articles and par-
ticularly enjoyed your new additions such as
"Quotes and Quips" and "Digital Dharma." I
can't wait to see what your future issues have
in store for us.
SHIKHA MALAVIYA
, EDEN PRAIRIE, MINNESOTA
"saklOOOl@gold.tc.umn.edu
...
AS LONG TIME READERS OF' HINDUISM TO-
DAY we wanted to let you know how we feel
about the new format. First, the pictures are
beautiful especially the fold-out in Decem-
ber. The size is also easy to hold, articles are
professional, well written and infoflllative. It
is truly a fine publication, but I regret that
you felt it was necessary to change the for-
mer format. We very much preferred the
old newspaper format. The new ... format
gives it less character, and it has become like
a small Time magazine. Perhaps this gives
the magazine more mainline stattls, but it is
less distinguished. Also the print is harder to
read, either because of the size or the glossy
paper.
BILL & TERESA WEED
, "eastwest@snowcrest.net
/
TODAYmE HAVE RECEIVED THE NEWISSUE
of HINDUISM TODAY. It is wonderful. Thank
you. We wish the whole editorial team good
health, prosperity, much energy, divine pro-
tection and blessing to continue your beau-
tiful service.
ABHAYANAND
OM'vISHWA GURU DEEP HINDU MANDIR
BUDAPEST, HUNGARY
/ "ervin@castor.net.matav.hu
\
Update the Dictionaries
HINDUS ARE PAGANS AND 'HEATHENS...
that is, according to popular Western Eng-
lish.,dictionaries. Heathen or pagan are both
defined as "1) Those who are non-Christian,
non-JeWish and, more recently, non-Muslim.
2) irreligious; one who does not worship the
true God; an uncultivated person." These
te;ms blatantly label the major religions of
Hinduism, Bl,lddhism and Shintoism as irre-
ligious and uncivilized. In Europe, these
words referred to the rustic and' uncultured
village peoples of Middle Age Germany. The
, synonyms of the Oxford Dictionary . list hea-
then as sYnonymous with "pagan, unepJight- ,
ened, barbaric, idblaters and savage," while
listing the ,opposite as "sophisticated, urbane
and cultured." I challenged the well-known
dictionaries to re-examine and their
definitions of the words heathen and pagan.
Houghton Mifflin, Random House and Ox-
forel were thankful for the obse}vation and
said' t;hat changes are being seriously consid-
ered. Merriam-Webster insisted that the
change is not necessary because "they are
actually used by speakers and writers of
th1}t language. The definitions are, in fact,
accurate of the words as they are actually
\lsed in English." I urge all responsible indi-
viduals to take appropriate actions to correct
this persistent effrontery.
PS. T HAKUR>
CRANSTON, RHODE ISLAND, USA
Enough 'Yith Comparisons
I HAVE COME ACROSS MANY A COMPARISON
made between the various beliefs systems
such as Christianity, Islam, Hinduism,
iIi several issues of HINDUISM TODAY ("The
DNA of Dharma," INsre:HT, December '96). I
have not, however, been able to find a rea-
son for such a study and analysis. I find this
exercise to be confusing, not only for the
young and newer admirers of Hinduism but
also for people well versed in scripture. I
contend that Hinduism, unlike the other
systems of belief, could only be properly de-
scribed as spirituality. comparison or
analysis is necessary.
BRAHM D. MISHRA
SUGARLAND, TEXAS, USA
Where Are We Heading?
IT MAKES ME FEEL THAT IT IS MOST UN-
fortunate to be a Hindu. Being a Hindu by
birth, religion and still not being able to
preach and propagate Hinduism in our own
country of Bharat is ridiculous. Swami
Vivekananda had said we should be proud
to call ourselves Hindus. Over the years I
think we Hindus have adopted hypocrisy.
We believe in one ,thing and preach some-
thing else, adopting and others. It
is most unfortunate that, the sacrifices made
by our ancestors have gone a-begging. To-
day, we find ourselves under the clutches of
our own people. It is unfortunate that in
spite of having one of the oldest civilizati0ns
and cultures, we find ourselves to be a joke.
We are heading into the 21th century with
pessimism rather than optimism, with un-
"certainty rather than certainty, with only
vacant dreams, no hope and no future.
...
• AVANISH RAJ
"avraj@indiana.edu
Keep reqding. Things look better from
where we stand.
./
Letters with writer's na,n;.e, address and
phone number, shoulcd be sent to:
Letters, HINDUISM ToDAY
107 Kaholalele Road
KAPAA, HI, 96746-9304 USA
or faxed to: (808) 822-4351
or e-mailed to:
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Letters m,ay be edited for space and clarity and may
appear in electronic versIons of HINDUISM TODAY. •
" INDICATES LETTERS RECEIVED VIA E-MAIL
Ayurveda Holistic Center
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Ask for Swami Sada Shiva Tirtha
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ship and sovereignty. Take, for example, the
draft's proposed article 27: "Indigenous
peoples have the right to the restitution of
the lands which they have traditionally
owned and which have been confiscated
witpout their consent." That would logical-
ly include large regions of the US and
Canada. Given such ramifications, the
reluctance encountered in Geneva to grant
meaningful rights was understandable.
Keeping.the tradition: Tribal folk dancers in Madhya Pradesh a.t harvest season
RlyHTS
India has the largest number of tribal peo-
ple in the the Adivasis, "original in-
habitants." The Adivasis characterize their
people by: "reliance on forest, ancestral land
and water bodies within the territory of the ..
community for food and other necessities,
and a distinctive culture which is communi!.
ty 0riented and gives primacy to nature." In
1994 they registered their concerns that
." the systematic assault of the state and the
so-called mainstream cultures, together
with the loss ofland and forests, the' materi-
Tribals Take a Walk
al base for om culture and ethos, have
pushed the newer generations of Adivasis
into transience" -meaning ollt of the forests
and into towns and cities.
UN declaration on rights of indigenous peoples
Deforestation mayor may not cause glob-
al warming, but its immediate effect upon
tribals is the devastating loss of their home
and means of livelihood. The irony of all this
is that tribals are the only truly ecologically
successful people in the world, able to live
indefinitely in an area without turning it
into a wasteland. Not only do the nations of
the worJd need to insure the ability of native
peoples ·to continue their traditional nfe
style, they would do well to learn from them
how to similarly live in sustainable harmony
with nature. Another !,9-eeting nex;t year will
again discuss the draft declaratio,n. •
·hits tough,going in Geneva discussion
-I
T SEEMED LIKE A GOOD IDEA AT THE
time-to declare a "Year of the Indige-
nous Peoples" in 1993 to ·coincide with
the 500th anniversary of Chr,stopher
Columbus' arrivaI in Americas. So the
UN pundits who decide such things were
surprised at the uproar among native Amer-
• 0 ican Indians as to why they should be so
honored in celebration of -an
<
Lynn Star Yellow Wood of the American In-
dian Dakota tribe declared, "What has met
us here in Geneva is the all-too-familiar at-
mosphere of duplicity, deceit and disrespect
that we received from the invader states in
our homelands.
I
' Then his delegation left.
The problem is not hard to identify: seri-
o ous political ramifications of land owner-
event that led directly to the
decimation of every single Indi-
an tribe in the hemisphere. The
UN responded sympathetically .
by declaring an entire "Decade
Adivasis-India's Indigenous People
of the ,;-Indigenous People." A
part of' this grand, if vaguely
conceived, scheme is a "Declara-
tion on the Rights of Indigenous
People," to be presented in 2004
for adoption by the UN and all
its member nations.
The declaration has hit rough
going. Representatives of UN
memoer nations and of the
world's 400 million indigenous
people met in October to
a preliminary draft in Geneva. o.
. Distressed that not a sing1e one
bf their procedural demands was
being met, every indigenous rep-
resentative walked out on the
first day. Some returned over the
next week, often to deliver an.
eloquent parting 'speech. Troy
HARAT CAN BOAST THE
largest number of the
world's tribal people-
40 million. Among the
most numerous are the
Gonds (2.5 million) of Cen-
tral India and the Bhils (2.5
million) of West India. There
are hundreds of such groups
throughout the mountainous
regions, known as Adivasis
("original inhabitants") or
"Scheduled Tribes." The
government does not accept
them as "indigenous peoples,"
for the UN defInition only
includes those whose forepar-
ents were conquered by
invaders.
India's tribals are racially
different from most Indians
(who are a Caucasoid peo-
ple). It is believed that at
some point-perhaps more
than ten thousand years
ago-these Caucasians
pushed the tribals from the
plains of North and South In-
dia into the hill regions.
Unlike in other countries,
the kings of Hindu India nev-
er pursued a genocidal policy
toward the tribals-the rea-
son they remain so numerous.
Religiously, the tribal faiths
easily fall within the very
broad system of beliefs and
practices of Hinduism, itself
sometimes classified as a
"tribal religion." Adlvasl: Tribal woman in Goa
FEBR UARY, 1997 HI-NDUISM TODAY 17
18
• The Wisdom of Faith.
Huston Smith (pictured) and
Bill Moyers in a I-hour spe-
cial: "Hinduism & Buddhism."
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US$89.95. Entire series: $299.
• Religions of the World.
Huston Smith looks into the
heart of the great religious
traditions. Ten AUDIO cassettes
in a binder, with a learning card
set Approx.13 hours. US$ 59.95.
• India & The Infinite.
World authority on religion,
Huston Smith in a "visual essay of lingering beauty" US$39.95.
Also:
• Hinduism & The Song of God. Indias physical beauty is the
background for the Hindu concept of self-realization. US$ 39.95.
• The Way To Baba. Sathya Sai Baba in his many roles:
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Tamil, Hindi, Sanskrit Summer Courses
June 26-Aug 19, 1997
The Center for South and Southeast Asian Studies, University
of Michigan (USA), offers intensive Beginning and Interme-
diate Tamil, Hindi and Beginning Sanskrit in the Summer
term. Courses are equivalent to a full years language instruction.
College students, high school seniors, and other adults are
eligible to apply, no later than April 15.
For details, contact Marga Miller: Tel: 313-764-8571
Fax: 313-936-0996 • E-mail: mkmiller@umich.edu.
Remind yourself continually
of God-wear an Om of puri-
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This Om pendant is exquis-
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the front-it can accommo-
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It is beautiful on men or
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makes an ideal gift for a
Sri Chinmoy Ayurvedic Institute
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The Sri Chinmoy Institute of Ayurvedic Sciences offers
authentic training in the 'ancient traditions of Ayurvedic
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Jewels of Bhakti • PO Box 510 • Concord, CA 94522 USA
The Tallest Hanuman Ever in India
For the Welfare of the World Community
The Shri Viswaroopa Panchamukha Anjaneya Swamy Foundation has started a project to
install a SHRI VISWAROOPA PANCHAMUKHA ANJANEYA, in Periyakuppam village, near
Tiruvallur, Madras, India. The idol of the Lord will have five faces - Lord Anjaneya, Lord
Veera Ugra Narasimha, Lord Pakshi Raja, Lord Lakshmi Varaha, and Lord Lakshmi
Hayagreeva. It will be 32 feet tall and sculpted in a single green Granite stone; the size will
reflect a look true to his name and stature.
The cost to complete this project is approximately one-half million US dollars, financed
entirely through the donations, gifts, sponsorship of kind hearted devotees, philanthropic
institutions, and business establishments throughout the world. Our immediate need is to
shape the stone at Hassan, Karnataka and to reduce its present 400 ton weight to a more
transportable size.
Your kind contributions by cash or cheque may be sent to:
Swamy Venkatesa Bhattachariar is a divine
spring of our time. Fondly called
MANTRAMURTHY DASAN by his numerous
devotees around the world, Swamy is the
founder trustee of SHRI VISWAROOPA
PANCHAMUKHA ANJANEYA S W A ~
FOUNDATION. This important project was
started with the blessings of Poojya Sri
Paramacharyal , of Kanchi Kama Koti Peeta.
Swamiji has taken this great task upon
Shri Viswaroopa Panchamukha Anjaneya Swamy Foundation
46 B/2 Krishnapriya Apartment
Babu Ranjendra Prasad First Road
West Mambalam
Madras - 600 033 INDIA
91 44 4811280
For more InfonnaUon please contact:
India Dr. P.Lakshmi (91444811280)
UK Mr. Shantl N Bhardwa (44 1477 533866)
USA Mr. M.K. Sridhar (408 732 2739)
Singapore Mr. M.Nachlappan (65 7370291)
himself for the welfare of fellow beings on a -f9
Divine order. "
DIJE TO HIT TV AIRWAVES IN INDIA';'Om Na-
mall Shivaya," a multi-part television serial
"totally based on Lord Siva," was ready for
release in November. The ambitious work is
produced by Creative Eye Limited and di-
reeted by film actor Dheeraj Kumar. He ex-
plains, "It starts from the inceptffin of the
world according to the Hindu culture and
religion." It should get heavenly ratings.
YOU CAN'T TAKE IT WITH YOU, but you can let
it earn interest until you come back for it.
"Reincarnation accounts" are being set up -:
by a Liechtenstein-based firm, Prometh,
which refers to such long-range planning as
"seeet capital-for your next life." The mini-
mum investment is $130',0'0'0', and must be
claimed within 23 years of your death. And
yes, to-claim it, you must be able to'answer
some very personal .questions.
ONE-MILLION CHILDREN. ARE DEAD, injured or
displaced due to Sri Lanka's thirteen-years
of civil strife-a
quarter-million of
them under the
age of five. The
figures are from a
two-year study by
the U.K.-based
group "Save The
Children" as re- Lanka in happier times
ported to the UN.
NAVARATRI FESTIVITIES, including late-into-
{he-night garbha dancing, cannot be re-
stricted by legislation, even by the city
council of Edison, New Jersey. Civic lead-
ers in Edison, an area boasting the heaviest
concentration of Indian immigrants in the
US (20',0'0'0' families), imposed a nightly
curfew on the month-long Navaratri activi-
ties".,which annually draw 4,0'0'0' people to
an industrial park. A Federal judge ruled the
restrictions unconstitutionaf. "This is indeed
a landmark judgment, a re-
ligious practice different from the Western-
JudeO-Christian tradition," said Vivodh Z.J.
Anand of the Indo-American Society.
BEFORE GOD is one thing; making
the six-mile journey up the steep steps of
Tirupati temple in Andra Pradesh on one's
19tees is quite another. A 1O'-year-old devo-'
tee did it to fulfill a vow to Lord Venka-
teshwara after a prayer' was answered that
his father's knee problem be cured. The
tapas took 14-hours to complete. Devotees
of the Lord of the Seven Hills also now find
" a rare treat as they wend through the long
lines toward darshan of Lord Vishnu: dis-
20 iI,INDULSM TODAY F E BRUARY, 1997
plays of rarely
seen ancient and
priceless gold jew-
elry and orna-
ments gifted by
such historical fig-
ures as Sri Kr-
ishnadevaraya. Tirupatfs long queue
THE UNITED RELIGIONS INITIATIVE ("DIASPO-
RA," December, 1996), a visionary attempt
to bring the world's various and distinct re-
ligions together in a spirit of daily-coopera-
tion for the global good, "could be the
church of the Antichrist," or so posits the
arch-conservative Catholic Family News. -
Their 1O,aO'O-word article condemns the
respected initiative as a plot by commu-
nists and Masons to create a single one-
world religion and thus destroy the
Catholic Church. It attacks interfaith har-
mony as misguided New-Age syncretism
promoting a pantheistic "occult religion of
Satan." It states that the true mission of the
Catholic Church is not to bring peace to
the world, but to bring the world to their
faith. '].;hey conclude, "Only the Catholic
religion: .. can bring peace." Hmmm!
DAMN THE OPPOSITION, THE DAM IS ON. The
Obseroer newspaper reports authorities in
India will pour $4.2-billion into the Sardar
Sarovar Dam project in Madhya Pradesh to
see it completed by the year 20'0'2; this de-
spite court challenges and the outcries of
environmentalists.
"HAVE SOME PIZZA, AND BY THE WAY, now
you're a Ch,ristian." The Massachusetts De-
partment of Social Services recently re-
ceived complaints after an evening of free
pizza, games and prizes staged for 20'0'-
youn.$low-income housing residents.
Bussed to the Anchor Baptist Church, the
kids soon found the food and fun were only
after the sermon and the baptisms. Two
young Asian boys, ages 12 and 9, said they
didn't know what was happening when
they were being converted from Buddhism.
The Churchs pastor says tIle parental con-'
, sent form includecd permission "to partici-
pate in all aspects of the service." Chris-
tianit1J Today rep6rts, 'f\. police investigation
concluded church officials broke no crimi-
nallaws by baptizing the youths."
SOME OF GANDHI'S ASHES have beer;: re-
turned to his great -grandson, Tushar: Arun
Gandhi, sitting in an bank
vault;. since 1949. Heintends to scatter them
over the Ganga River. Most of the ashes

were spread in sacred rivers of each state of
after the Mahatma's death. Another
portion is kept at the Lake Shrine of the
Self-Realization Fellowship in Los Angeles.
THERE IS NO DIRTIER JOB, but-someone has
to do it. They're called scavengers-those
who collect human excreta for disposal-
long considered the lowest work of the un-
touchables. But their champion is Dr. .
Bindeshwar Pathak, founder of Sulabh In/
ter national, who is dedicated to liberating
the scavengers from an "unhealthy and '
subhuman occupation."
Sulabh has developed
public toilets which
generate biogas from
waste and converts that
to electricity. They've
built 61 plants to date.
Sulabh is also saving
lives-over 50' infec- Biogas generation
tions can be trans-
ferred to humans via excreta, and "the
highest number of deaths in India are from
diarrheal diseases," according to Dr. Pathak.
IS SUGAR VEGAN? Not always. How On
Earth reports that as raw sugar is refined to
whiteness, charred animal bones are some-
times used in the purification and decol-
orization process. And by the way, brown
sugar, they report, is actually just white
sugar with molasses added.
/
MONGOLIAN BUDDHISM is in renaissance. Af-
ter enduring the deaths of 110',0'0'0' monks
and the destruction of most of its 746
monasteries, Mongolia ousted communism
in 1990', and began restoring its faith. "One
of these monasteries, Erdene Khambyn, is
now being rebuilt by Dawa, the grand-
daughter of one of the executed monks," re-
ports Share International. Dawa hid the
,..-temple's hand-made statue of Maitreya
Buddha for 60' years.,..Now it and photos of
the Dalai Lama are centerpieces 6t the re-
constructed temple.
THE US-BASED Hindu Students Council has
now formed a Community Action Netwoi k
to counter, and edu):ate people about, mis-
informa,tion about Hindu culture, religion
and institutions. HSC, C6 Honey-
bee Court, Cockeysville, Maryland, 210'30',
USA, or email: jsc-can@hindunet.org
BRIEFLY is compiled from press, TV and
wire-seroice reports and edited by RAVI
PERUMAN, award-winning radio journalist
at KGO in San Francisco.
CLOCJ..."WISE FROM TOP: CHOODlE WORLD BANK, HINDUISM TODAY
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Taman Wira, 0'80'0'0' Sungai Petani, Kedall, MALAYSIA
Tel: 0'4-421-9326 E-mail: balan@siva.pLmy
A Video Pilgrimage through India
Some 60' sites are covered,
places as hard to find as
they are hard to get per-
mission to film. Very per-
sonal, affectionate. If you
- can't get to India, enjoy
this video-US $39.95.
Brahma Jyoti Studios
20'0'0' N. Ivar Ave #7
Hollywood, CA 90'0'68 USA
Tel: 1-213-466-9370'. Checks payable to M. Cianciara, please.
Kundalini Maha Yoga in California, USA
'Shri Anandi Ma-Master in
the tradition of Kundalini
Maha Yoga, will be
offering public meditation
programs in California:
• Santa Cruz Feb. 7-8
1-40'8-475-7398
• San Jose Feb. 21-22
1-40'8-995-6664
• Antioch Feb. 28-Mar. 1
1-510-757-9361
Shaktipat initiation will be
offered by appointment
e!lch weekend.
"With Shaktipat, the student is saturated with Divine
Energy. After Shaktipat, the Kundalini is permanently
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 ultimate goal, without doubt."
For general information about Shri Anandi Ma, Kundalini
Maha Yoga or Shaktipat contact:
Dhyanyoga Centers
PO Box 3194
Antioch, CA 94531 USA
Tel: (510)757-9361. http://www.dyc.org!
I,'
I
,
Sri Ramana Maharshi
The Society of Abidance in Truth
offers hard-to-find books on
Advaita Vedanta and Sri Ramana
Maharishi through: Treasures of the
Heart (retail) and SAT Darshanam
Books (wholesale). Send $2 for
wholesale or retail catalog:
SAT, 1834 Ocean St, Santa Cruz,
CA 950'60' USA • Tel: 40'8-458-9654
Tel/fax 40'8-425-0'40'7 .
E-mail: ramana@cruzio.com
Web: http:/www.SATRamana.org
USA Immigration Attor ... ey
Y. Krishna Gupta
USA Attorney at Law
Representation of clients before USA Immigration Service
and USA Consulates worldwide.
All immigrant and nonimmigrant visas, "green" cards,
work permits, etc.
1515 Clermont St. #30'2
Denver, CO 80'220' USA
Tel/fax: 1-30'3-333-6797
Member: American Immigration Lawyers Association
Finding Balance in Times of Change
H.H. Sri Swami
Satchidananda
will be speaking at
the St. Augustine by the Sea
Episcopal Church in
Santa Monica, California.
Friday, January 10', 1997
at 7:3O'PM '
Sri Swamiji will be speaking
on "Finding Balance in Times
of Change" and will be intro-
duced by Diane Ladd. There
will also be musical enter-
tainment.
Donation: $10.0'0' at the door.
St. Augustine by the Sea Episcopal Church
1227 4th Street
Santa Monica, California, 90'401-130'3 USA
Sponsored by .the Integral Yoga Center of Los Angeles.
For further information or for information regarding
classes in Hatha Yoga, pranayama, meditation and our
Integral Yoga program for heart patients at
Cedars-Sinai Hospital, please call: 1-310'-452-5815.
/
DOC U MEN TAR· Y
,
. .
A, DaY,.in the
Liftler'ln ·
-\
Eighteen photographers traverse Bharat
to. capture her spirit in pictures film.
By ARCHANA DONGRE, Los ANGELES,
AND RAJIV MALIK, NEW DELI-II .
BE DAWN, EARr.y FEBRUARY:
. 1995, a team of 18 Indian photog-
departed Delhi and
, 50 rolls of film
each to reach the remote corners
1
...
. .
and isolated corridors of India. Hand
picked. for their 'world-class artistry,
they crisscrossed the subcontinent to cap-
ture the people and poignancy .of locatiop.s
that haa been scouted and researched for
three months. Four days later, . .35,000 pho-
tographs were submitted. In addition, video Face it: Diarrwnd c!1-tters' work is inspected
and film crews numbering 200 followed the in Surat, Gujarat, noted for precious stones
photographers in an attempf to preserve the
fleeting moments in moving pictures. This
impressive effort spa}Vnecl a beautiful book
and a fantastic documentary film, both with
Eastern and Western editions. /
from 35,000-culling the bestrfrom the best.
The .result of the year-long - editing
process was the large book, India 24 Hours,
published in India by MapiniGrantha in
' 1995. In 199.6, Harper Michael Tobias, a! Los An--
geles:based, 40-something
authl9r, film actor, ecologist
and historian, was the prime
mot>ivator ,in the photo-
graphic effort. He also
wrote the text, and pr9-
duced and directed the
video. He worked hand in
hand with Raghu Rai, dis-
tmguished Indian photogra--
pher, to choose the team
members and help them de-
termine their themes. To-
bias recounts, ';My ,specific
instruction to each photog- ' Riding high: Family in Ned
rapher was to hold utmost Ghand's {';.arden, Punjab
Collins bought the F'lghts to
publish it in the US. Collins:
ep.ition is the just 'released, A
Day in the Life of India, the
newest in the prestigious
Day in the .Life ph0tojour.-
nalistic series by Harper
Collins Publishers, San
Francisco. vhe" book is a pic-
'tographic, phpto-journalistic
attempt to conveX. the rip-
ples, rhythms, ebbs and
flows of everyday life in
Bharat. One hundred elo-
quent, timeless images (a
few are reproduced here an<;l
on the coyer) capture the for the subjeet and
environment they are shooting-for the qui-
et dignity of every jiva involved-and not to
modify anything, to capture unobtrusively
the ordinary." Together, Tobias and Rai had
the arduous task -of selecting 200 photos
22 HINDUISM TODA,Y 1997
sublimity in the mundane-from the most
ancient village tFaditions to the maddening
pUlsations/of her modefn cities. The Collins
edition is stuFlIling at 14 x 10 inches, but the
Indian edition has more photographs and

.,'11
.' ()e
,N New
.' t .•-
./
. "-
L.

Rannof i
"xiii;r'"
Peekaboo: ExPensive paper is re-
r;laced by slates in Rajasthan
about 80 more pages of Tobias'
t30th Tobias and Rai seem to prefer the
Indian edition, as Rai described', "The fmal
editing by the publisher- [Collins] diluted
the effect I wanted to produce throughout
the book. The publisher added pictures oth-
vignette: Great f!,bddess Ganga
sweet sounds ojflute at sunset
er than those I had selected. Cer-
tain 'piCtures I wanted used large
were used small, so their impact is
not as great. .Editing is like magic. If
you put two good pictures side
by side, they can enhance each
other. On the' other -hand, if you
put two wrong pictures togeth-
er, they can kill each other."
The cinematographic effort
first manifested in a two-hour
Indian edition, India 24 Hours,
that aired on TV,
January 26, 1996, with warm
reviews. A 56-minute US ver-
sion, also titled A Day in the Life
of India, [see sidebar, pg. 24] is
scheduled to air in the US
On the other side of the Raghu Rai (left) and
Michael Tobi as, whose cap reads, "Akimsa"
sometime in 1997. The film details some of
the making of the book as the photogra:
pbers explain their artistry on location.
The dream team: These are influential
to be sure, but Rai
deems the production itself to
be more significant thaJil. the
product. "For me, the biggest
fulfillment was that a team of
Indian photographe'rs col-
lectively participated to
make this project a suc-
cess," Rai assessed.
"The greatest problem
we have in Hindustan is
that each o:t;Le keElPs to
himself. We do net pool our
resources. We are not work-
ing together. Today, this is the
spirit of Bharat. Whenever a
project like this comes, we ap-
pear to the West as if we are
a lifeless people. But here, the
achievement was our collec-
tive participation and work as
a team."
cles the had to overcome, "Coordinat- --:
ing the project was very difficult in view of
the fact that there are n() cellular
Yml cannot reach people on the road, so
scheduling and logistics were awkward.
-Locations like Ladakh and Arunachal
Pradesh posed difficulties due to extreme
cold and the remote, mountainous' region.
Photographers got frustrated and fell ill in
these far-out locati0ns. But despite all this,
the project went without a nitch."
This helps to explain why it actually took
100 hours to photograph ' a mere 24 hours
worth of India. Rai attests that even 100
is too little time, "I would have asked
for ten days and assigned the job to fifty
photographers. India is a wondrous nation.
To truly capture it can take a few eenturies,
let alone a few days." Tobias concurred, of-
fering, "India: is too complex, too vast- with
the modern and the most ancient coexist-
ing side by side. This country has the great-
est diversity in the world. How can you do
it justice in just 24 hours?" '
Why then call it '1\ Day in the Life?" Rai
explains the concep("Even A pay in the
Life of America was not done in
24 hours. What it means is that
you have to portray how a day
in the nation begins and how it
comes to aJil. end." And this 'is
the unique and intrigti.fng fea-
ture of the book. The opening
pages portray sunrise and early
morning. Paging through the .
scenes take§.. you progressively
through Indias
noon, sunset and evening. The
film follows the same pattern.
Not as bad as it looks: K.erala's young dancers practice
face and 'body rrwvements for up to 8 years .
Bharat in the balance: As the
reader pores through the book's
beautiful photographs, accom-
panied by' adequate captions
indicati:Q.g thorough research,
one notices a strong bias to-
Though at the core of the project, Tobias
was reluctant to highlight his own partici-
pation. Instead, he said, "Some of the key
people'were Kirit Mehta, who is something
like the Ted Turner of India, and Parul
Shah. They are driven, dedicated and bril-
liant." He also detailed a few of the obsta-
ward the rural and tribal faces. Village
scenes and the environs of the indigenous
people, the Adivasis, peer out from numer-
ous pages. Despite a few shots of skyscrap-
ers, a modern mother and t hild or a mod-
el beside a car here and there, the middle
class is conspicuously absent. Western pho-
COURTESY Ji,ARPER COLLINS PUBLISHERS. FROM TOP:
s. PAUL (MARlffiT AND "I:RIBESMAN); NITIN RAI; MGHU RAI; MAHENDRA SINH; RAJESH YOM; YOG JOY FEBRUARY, 1997 HI' NDUISM TODAY 23
. ,
tographers {illd journalists are
often accused of foeusing their
lenses on eit!ller stark poverty .
or palatial grandeur. In this pro-
ject, where /the photographers
were all Indian, why cl,o we not
see their sensitivities and sensi-
bilities capturing the images of
India's middle class?
HINDUiSM TODAY asked Tobias
and Ral, but neither felt
that India was slighted in the
photo-editing process. "There
are 150 million middle-class
people in India, yersus 710 mil-
lion in rural areas," 'fubias ex-
Folk dan'cers: In traditional Punjabi fashion near Ludhiana tewn
I
photography. Darshan takes
place when one becomes trans-
parent, his mind in the
situation and truly sees the
world. I have learned this from
the camera itself, but it can hap-
pen with the naked eye as well.
There are open and simple peo-
ple whom you can see inside
and out. With such people, my
souL communicates. That is the
true darshan of somebody. In
Hinduism, we even say, 'I had
the darshan of God today,' and I
do meet people in whom I see
God. In oih dharma, if you have
plained. "We were looking for urtcliche,
timeless images, like a living time capsule.
We not cover every corner. The boo1$:
reveals the way people live, unencumbered
by any definition. It is riot a scholarly thesis,
but a mirror of the way things
fore the ultimate and timeless value of a
book ,that delivers India your fr.ont door.
For A Day in the Life presents the dar-
shan, sacred sight, of India. '''I}le philoso-
phy' of darshan J is very meaningful in
-darshan of life and nature, you view the
Almighty. He is in each one of us." ..,..I
HARPER COLLINS PUBLISHERS, 1160 BATTERY STREET, SAN I
BRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA 94111 USA. TEL; 415-477-4400;
FAX: 415-477-4444; www: HTIP:/ /www.HAR.PERCOLLINS.COM;
E-MAIL: HARPERCOLLINS.COM
are. We had to use subjective,
artistic, poetic criteria."
Rai was more specific, "The
only parameter for the selec-
-\
tion of the photographer was
that his work should have
freshness and iIftrinsi\ strength.
They were given suggestions, •
but we allowed t!hem the·free-
dom to select their assignment.
We told thein to shoot what-
ever touched their imagination, .
or which they thought was im-
portant. In way, you can
expect the best out of that per-
son. In choosing the photo-
graphs the only criterion was
merit. It was not based on any
religion, but simply the results
of intuitive, creative people
and what they found to be
powerful moments/'
Also manifest in both book
and -tilm is an absence of im-
ages of Hindu temples and rit-
ual worshipl. The devout Hin-
du will no doubt notice this. .
But Rai himself contends, "It is
wrong to say that Hinduism
has not been properly repre-
sented." While Tobias
tered our challenge, "Hin-
duism is inherent in numerous
images. There are Sadhus from
. the Kumbhamela, glimpses of
Varanasi and tl)e banks of
Ganga, people in a Mathura
temple, and a ,window from '
th1:l Swaminarayan Temple in
Bhuj, western Gujarat."
Bharat darShan: In the end',
Raghu Rai offer.s a deeper per-
spective on the merit of these
weighty works, bringing to the
A. "Love Letter to India"
Producer Michael Tobias Bharat to the world
• I
I
NDIA HOLDS A MAGICAL
charm for Michael Tobias,
who has peImed 21 books
and has written, directed
and produced more than 100
films in 50 plus countries of
the world. About A Day in the
Life of India, he admitted, "It'
is my personal love letter to
the country--the friendliest
country in the world." He uses
expressions like "inexpressibly
/ lyrical:' and "abundantly poet-
ic" when talking of India. He
has made some 25 there,
first as a teenager. He has
close Indian friendships, f91-
Jainism and is an advo-
cate of lJ:..himsa, non-violence.
Although the present pro-
duction was difficult, at ,best,
Tobias/unreservedly declared,
"I have made over liJ 100 filIns
1P"ound the world, but despite
its problems, this was by far
the most wonderful, most
joyous I have ..
Whea asked exactly what
the challenges were, Tobias
quickly recalled, "Our camera-
men got sick and frost-bitten.
Dealing with Indian accents
for international audiences
posed stubborn difficulties. In
Arunachal Pradesh two'groups
For joy? Not! These Kerala martial for Nitin Rai.
started fighting because it was
a custom in the wedding that
was being filmed. But our
photographer got scared. He
thought they were fighting
with hi:m...:Also, the people put
heaps of dead rats in his je€p
because they were transport-
ing those for sale." This is one
photo we will not miss.
Tobias' own as
a s'cholar of anthropology ,
explains his intimate portrayal
of Adivasis and rural commu-
/nities. Especially in the film,
you see close-ups of the indi-
,
viduals and lifestyles of the .
Gonds and Bhils. of MadhYii
Pradesh; the Todas of South
India; the ntral communities
6f Coorg; Thar desert, Ra-
jasthan; Arunachal Pradesh
and the fishing communities
of Keralas backwaters.
Tobias' future holds a ?pec-
ulative endeavor, "I would
like to do a book about. every
state in India. The country
has been a photographer's
dream ever since photogra-
phy was deveI0ped." If any-
one can do it, surely it is he.
24 HINDUISM TODil.¥ 1997
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I'
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I:
.
DISPUTED TREASURE
Gandhi's Last letters'
.
A satchel of papers, brittle and yellow with age, surfaces' after 48 years, is almost ·
auctioned for millions in Lqndon: then gifted to India by Saiva Siddhanta Church
HO WOULD HAVE GUESSED
that while HINDUISM To-
H . __ . _ DAY'S staff toiled to gather
T. " ... ..,_ news of the Hindu world we
would ourselves become the
subject of one of the biggest
stories to hit the Indian and
UK media, broadcast daily for weeks? Yet,
there we were in London on a frigid Fri-
day afternoon, November 24, surrounded
by highly-paid British solicitors and repre-
sentatives of the UK's oldest auctioneer,
Phillips, seated beside India's senior-most
diplomat, His Excellency Dr. L.M. Singhvi,
at a massive mahogany table at India
House, facing three teams of news camera-
men and dozens of reporters who were
there to get the lowdown· on the final dis-
pensation of the h0tly-disputed Last Pa-
pers of Mahatma Gandhi. Whoa! Let's
start at the beginning.
First, a journalistic disclosure. The we in
this story is Saiva Siddhanta Church (SSC),
ORe of the US's leading Hindu institutions
for over four decades, and the brother cor-
poration of Himalayan Academy, publisher
of HINDUISM TODAY. They share the same
stewards, the same I]lonastic staff and the
same headquarters in Hawaii, and were
both founded by our publisher, Eatguru
Sivaya Subramuniyaswami. We are deeply
involved in the story that follows.
It all began on October 2, 1869, in Gu-
jarat, India, with the birth of Mohandas
Karamchand Gandhi, a shy and unremark-
able boy who recounted of his childhood:
"The fact that I recollect nothing more of
those days than having learnt, in company
with other boys, to call our teacher all
kinds of names, would strongly suggest that
my intellect must have been sluggish, and
my memory raw." That boy, who
feared ghosts and all social interaction,
would change the world, free India, inspire
spiritually-motivated social change among
millions and become, in the end, Father of
India and patrol) saint of nonvi0lence and
compassion. Sluggish, indeed!
Fast-forwarding a few frames: the boy
married at thitteen, graduated high school
(barely), entered college (failing every class
and dropping out), went to London at 18 to
study law for three years, became a barris-
26 HINDU ISM TODA..Y' F l\BRUARY, 1997
ter, returned the next day to Bharat, failed
in law, took a clerical job at a Muslim firm
in South Afrjca, returned 21 years:'Iater to .
India, campaigned for the harijans, started
an ashram and, press, jOined the struggle
for Independence, spearheaded his nation's
successful noncooperation movement, fast-
ed nearly to death to bring peace, brokered
with others the departure of Britain and
was assassinated on Tanuary 30, 1948.
At Gandhi's side that afternoon when a
Hindu fanatic's three gun . shots brought
him down was his 27-year-old secretary,
Mr. Venkataraman Kalyanam. Hours later
the dutiful amanuensis returned to his of-
fice to take charge of bundles of papers
and notebooks remaining under his care.
The 450 documents, all hand-scribed in
English, had their source, curiously, in si-
lence. Gandhi had taken a vow of mauna,
not speaking even a word, on Mondays. All
communications and correspondence were,
on those days, written down. Without his
vow, these flapers would not exist today.
The stockpile was stashed in a trunk for
decades. In the '80s Mr. Kalyan¥U exhibit-
ed and published a few, gave some as pre-
sents and corresponded, more than once,
with the National Archive of India, inviting
them to Madras to take charge of his aging
trove. They never came, and they
m.entioned Gandhi's will to him. Kalyanam
told HINDUISM TODAY, "They didn't evetJ,
have the courtesy to acknowledge JIlY of-
fer." The NAI says it did write him in 1990
and 1991, l)ut the letters never arrived. So
he started corresponding with Sotheby's,
the London auctioneers, . who expressed
mild interest, asking for samples. I
Before that happened, Mr. Kalyanam
came to know of Satguru Sivaya Subramu-
hiyaswami, first through Mauritian attor-
ney, Manon Mardemootoo, and later through
Suoramuniyaswami's publications, includ-
ing HINDUISM TODAY. Liking the swami's
articulation of Sanatana Dharma and
charmed by the white-granite temple be-
ing built on a Pacific island, Mr. Kalyanam
decided to give his collection to the Iraivan
Temple project.
On January 9, 1996, the two met for the
Settll!J11ent team: I to r, Shirley Brookes
(SSC attorney), Easlim Katir,
Acharya Veylanswamt, H.E. Dr. L.M. .
Singhvi, John Parsons (Phillips officer), Mrs.
Singhvi, Mark Chapman (Navajivan attor-
ney), Mrs. Gopalkrishna Gandhi, the
Deputy High Commissioner, and lJ1', Nan-
daktf]7Ul-r (UK Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan:; .
first time. Subramuniyaswami was leading
a pilgrimage to South India's temples and,
following his 70th Jayanthi celebrations
held at Chidambaram, had halted in Chen-
nai. Mr,l(alyanam came and made his gift,
hopeful ' that it might "fetch as much as
Rs.lOO,OOO (U5$3,500) in London." ,
Mr. Easan Katir,.a SSC/member and UK
investment manager, was appOinted by Mr.
Kalyanam as agent to sell the papers in
London and give all proceeds to Sse. Katir ,
must have intuited their value, for he de-
cided to hand carry them on his flight.
Back in London, Katir received instruc-
tions from Subramuniyaswami to visit the
Indian High Commissioner, whom the swa-
mi had met at the 1993 Chicago Parliament
. of Worlds' Religions. The two have high re-
gard for each other. Subramuniyaswami
knew Dr. Singhvi would want to know
about so weighty a matter, so in March 'he
phoned the Higll Commissioner to share
news of the find, then asked Katir to visit
his home to amplify the details.
Though no ohe knew it at the time, Dr.
Singhvi was shocked by the idea of the pa-
pers' being sold on· the open market. This
was his nations treasure, not a commodity
to be peddled. He vowed to himself in that
moment to return the letters to India.
Meanwhile, the auctioneers changed
from Sotheby's to Phillips, a 200-year-old
company with impeccflble credentials. Un-
der the month-long scrutiny of Felix Pryor,
Phillip's manuscripts consultant, scrib-
blings revealed their identity ' and worth.
Pryor was the first to sense
how the final six months of
Gandhi's dramatic life were
chronicled here. He deci-
phered the handwriting and
put the works in chronolgical
order 'and historical context.
He told the press: "It is diffi-
cult to ov.er-emphasize the im-
portance of this archive. 'It is
quite extraordinary that some-
thing so central to the 20th
century should pop up like this
in its unadulterated form in
the house of one of his disci-
ples. It is the last act of an in-
credible drama and bears com-
parison in importap.ce with
". Churchill papers." .
, Phillips was thrilled. This
was the kind of extraordinary
item an auction house lives for.
The date was set, November
14. They dubbed the collection
"The Last Papers of Mahatma
Gandhi," published a compre-
hensive 96-page catalog and
invited the world to bring their
checkbooks. But this was no.t
for the faint of heart. The col-
lection was initially valued at U5$290,000.
Word spread and, as the press began to
headline the story in 'India and the UK, the
numbers climbed. A top appraiser was
hired put the value at U5$900,000.
Phillips hlpped expectations to U5$1,600,000.
Everyone was growing giddy.
Stop the auction: Everyone except Dr.
Singhvi, wh.o WflS working frantically (for
25 days straight, he later admitted) on all
fronts to halt the sale. He ·first suggested
nominal compensation for the papers, but
the Church declined, firm in its ownership
and unaware of any other claims. The
High Commissioner then reached out
. across the world, informing Indian leaders
of the pending sale. To them it was almost
sacrilegious that the writings had endJ d up
at Phillips and that money, more than, they
could afford, would determine their next
owner' ( though historians say Gandhi him-
self usee;!. to charge Rs.5 for his autograph,
which went toward Harijan relief). This
was part of the countrys soul and journey to
Catalog cover: Auctioneer's exhibit of per-
sonal writings, with one letter inset
freedom, Indians avowed: and must never
be sold, definitely not to the West.
Aware that the clock was ticking, officials
and citizens focused all efforts on the for-
mer owner. In Chennai, Mr. Kalyanam's life
turned upside-down. The 75-year-old wid-
ower lives in a simple home on Rs.500 a
month, does his own cooking, housekeep-
ing and gardening, and walks everywhere,
neither owning nor riding in a car. Starting
in August his secluded life vanished. The
press camped in his living room, moving in
and out all day long through the door with
its motto above, "Work is Worship." He was
followed by unwanted security guards
everywhere he went, and claims his phone
was tapped. Officials flew in from Delhi to
court him, the BBC interviewed him for
hours on end, and he took calls from high-
ly-placed Indian officials in the UK and
South Africa. The pressure mounted. An
old friend, Mr. N. Ram, editor of the pres-
national Frontline magazine (which .
ran a 16-page cover stor;y on the saga, No-
vember 29) was enlisted by the goverhment
to change Kalyanams mind. Mr. Ram spent
days beseeching his friend to relent, calling
upon his patriotic loyalties and warning of
dire consequences in court.
Mr. Kalyanam stood his ground
as political, media and legal arm-twisting
mounted. He was i,nterrogated, sued and
threatened with jail. Finding himself be-
tween the rock of his word to SSC and the
hard places provided by ardent officials, he
waffled for weeks. Finally, on November 7
the beleaguered fighter relented, signing
papers asking the auction to be cancelled.
Still, Phillips and SSC went forward, con-
vinced that Mr. Kalyanam had title when
FEBRUARY , 1997 HI' NDUISM TODAY 27
/
he made h\s gift, and thar the
collection was no longer his to
control or revoke. Even now, Mr. _
Kalyanam claims ownershIp, ar-
guing the papers were meant to
be discarded. He sa)js Gandhi
himself saw them in the of £ice
and asked why they Ql1d not
been tossed out. In Indian law,
lawyers tell, items thrown away
become the property of those
who garner'them. In fact, expert
auction solicitors in the UK had
told Subramuniyaswami there
was a solid case, advising, "We
may lose the battle to stop the
auction, but we will likely win
the war for title."
.,
'" o
"'
.,
z
.,
'" <
:>:
Where there's a will: As part of
the suit against Mr. Kalyanam,
Gandhi's will, written in 1940
and giving over his writings and
possessions to the Navajivan Trust,
surfaced. The Trust, which de-
rives its major income frorp. copy-
rights it holds of the Mahatma's
.' Bound for fame: Singvhi shows off the boxed papers
works, had kept the will in a cabinet in
Ahmedabad, forgotten until October. It
was faxed to Hawaii on November 7 from
Chennai. As ; oon as Subramuniyaswami
saw the probated will, he concluded that
Gandhi would have wanted his papers to
remain in India. That fax changed every-
thing. He gathered his 25 monks, telling
them that while SSC owned the papers, ti-
tle was being, disputed, and Gahdhi's intent
was more important than legal rights. From
this day, he said, they must "surrender our
papers and work with Dr. Sihghvi to return
them to India." He instructed them to fax
this decision to Dr. ,Singhvi, and told two
monks to fly to Lon'tion immediately.
Acharya Veylanswami, the Orders senior-
most sannyasin, 54, and Sadhaka Thondu-
natha, a Sri Lankan monk, arrived in Lon-
don -Wovember 10. JOined by Easan Katir,
they met with all parties to the entangle-
ment and, within a week, the auction was
cancelled and a settlement reached. Not
only did SSC renounce proceeds of the
auction it halted, it had to cover Phillip's
expenses to the tune of US$32,000. Sympa-
thetic to SSC's plight, anQIlymous UK
donors arranged for half the sum to Be giv-
en, by Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, ,(or Phillip's
catalog and special bookbinding costs.
On Friday, November 22, Dr. Singhvi
called a press copference at India House,
the London embassy. The yellowed, post-
card-sized lette;-s in the indepeI)derrce
sprawling handwriting had been
inserted into oversized albums placed in
three brown boxes on a massive mahogany
table. Before whirring cameras, the settle-
ment was signed, payments made to Phil-
lips and the papers, a gift from SSC, turned
28 HINDUISM TODA.Y F E( BRUARY, 1997
over to His Excellency by Phillips. In the
end, the Navajivan Trust bestowed the pa-
pers on the government of India.
{\. triumphant DIo Singhvi spoke, of his
joy in being able to return Gandhi's hand-
written works to India, "where they will '
form an important part of our national her-
itage. The legacy of Mahatma Gandhi
should not become an article of com-
merce." Aware of tIle Hindu Church's sac-
rifice of the pFecious works, he gave thanks
to all the parties for their high-minded ef-
foits to base the settlement not on legal
claims but "on reconciliati0n and moral
principles; ideals that form the essence of
the Mahatmas message to mankind."
Back in Hawaii, Subramuniyas'wami was
gratified. "It's a win-win situation. Our
temple must.be built with funds that come
f[<om the heart, and not from conflict 0F
confusion. donors in 39 nations, the
project will not be affected. Everyone in-
volved, in my mind, is a hero, especially
Dr. Singhvi and Mr. Kalyanam." He might
also have mentioned that SSC benefited
iIl?Jllensely from the global news coverage
which spread awareness of its Hawaiian
temple project to tens of millions.
The irony remains that none of..this could
have happened if the collection had not
left India" for no one there wanted it until
Phillips and SSC brought it into the lime-
light. Only when its untrivial value in the
West was established did India work for its
return. The high regard for Mahatma
Gandhi, held by those in the UK, b0th
British and Indian, played a key role in the
circuitous'route the Last Papers of Gandhi
took to reach-their natural and BOW secure
home in an l'ndian museum. --.J
BIOGRAPHY
,
Duty's Tasks:-
DAiary
His secret<lry tells of
Gandhi's strict routine
ANDHI'S DAY BEGAN AT 3:30AM SHARP.
,When I was With him, in 1947, the
78-year-old got up by himself, requir-
ing 1'10 alarm to rise at that early hour,
and woke up his associates who slept in the '
same room. His work spot also as his
bed. He never used a table, chair or cot. He
denied to himself all such comforts that the
poor in India could not afford. He gave up
clothing and put on only a loincloth. He re-
mained bare chested most of the time, using
a shawl only ih cold weather . .
He sat cross-legged on fhe floor on a thick
cotton mattress with a pillow at the back to
recline upon. Foreign visitors who were not
used to squatting on the floor were offered
chaii'S to sit. They would always decline,
preferring to sit on the floor while convers-
ing with Gandhi.
In front of Gandhi was a small portable
desk containing stationery and important
requiring his personal at-
tention. On top of the desk was a replica of .
the three monkeys, to remind that one
should not speak, hear or see evil. By his
side there was a spittoon, a bottle of water,
a basin for a face wash aJ;!.,d a t0wel.
Prayer, according to Gandhi, was- the key
of the morning and the bolt of the evening.
Thus, after his morning ablutiog, he com-
menced his day's work \Yith prayer recited
by us from all major religions. This took
about half an hour. He then had his first
meal of the day-;-a large tumbler full of hot
water mixed with a tahllespoon of hone)j
,He then perused the correspondence
placed before him. He observed
every Monday. On these days he kept him-
self fully engrossed in replying to letters and
writing artfcles in his own hand in Engli§h,
Hindi or his mother tongue, Gujarati. We
avoided granting any appointments for visi-
tors on this day. If Gandhi had anything td
convey to me or anyone else, he wrote the
message on a slip of-paper.
, On other days of the week, it duty
to sit by his side after the early-morning
prayer and take instructions. I typed in
English whatever was dictated to'me. He ap-
proved and signed letters before dispatch.
His articles were always published first in
his weekly Hanjan .. This was brought out in
'\
'" lI:
...
>-

'" ...
'" D

, . At work, 1942: Gandhi on his mat which served as sleeping place, office and reception area
English, Hindi and Gujarati.
He had his half-hour morning constitu-
tional at about 6AM, resting his hands OB the
shoulders of his two, grandnieces who
walked on either side. T,hese two girls looked
after his personal comforts and needs/such
as sewing him food at the right time, brush-
ing his dentures, giving him a massage,
helping--in his bath, shaving, etc. After the
morning stroll, he stretched himself for half-
an-hour for a body massage with mustard'
oil mixed with lemon juice. That ove'r, he
had a hot-water bath and got ready by 9AM
for his lunch which consisted of saltless veg-
etable soup, boiled vegetables, thin wheat
. pancakes and goats milk. Even eating,
he met VIPs. At HAM he again had a short
nap, then resumed writing or meeting visi-
tors. He had fresh fruit juice at 2PM and
then spun cotton for half im hour. He then
lay down on the mattress as one of the girls
applied a wet mud pack on his s'tomach. At
5PM he had his dinner, which was the same '
as hiS- lunch. He sustained himselr on this
bland food for years. I never saw him take
salt/ spices or sweets at any time.
Soon thereafter he held his evening prayer
in public. A large number of people came to
participate, anxious to hear his post-prayer
speech. ·It usually centered round the im-
portant political developments of the 9.ay,
and Gandhi informed the listeners of his
discussions with VIPs. When there was
nothing particular to be conveyed, Gandhi
dwelt on sadly neglected subjects like sani-
tation and cleanliness, the need to preserve
cornnlUnal harmony, the evils of racing, bet-·
ting, smoking, drinking, etc. 'He also took the
opportunity fn these discourses to have a
dig at the Indian Government for their "ex-
travagance and 'frivolous public expense" in
erecting his statue and conducting lavish
celebrations at a time when many people
were homeless and starVing. After the
prayer, Gandhi had a stroll for half an hour
with VIPs having an appointment. He re-
tired to bed at 9PM unless some very impor-
tant work held him up, which was rare.
Gandhi received ' nearly 75 letters and
telegrams every day from allover the globe.
One of my duties was t'b peruse these letters
and use my discretion in placing before him
all such correspondence which I considered
necessary for his attention. Most of the let-
ters were in English. Ten percent were in
Hindi, Urdu and other Indian languages. A
few were-in German, Italian or French.
Gandhi laid great stress on economy. All .
correspondence that was not considered es-
sential for preservation was converted into
writing pads of different sizes, and the blank
page on the reverse was used by all'ofus for
writing. Similarly, envelopes were slit open
and converted into writing pads. It was on
such one-side-used paper that Gandhi
wrote the letters and articles I had saved.
The public work Gandhi was engaged in
required him to visit various parts of India.
His two grandnieces, myself, a lady doctor
apd a senior secretary were his constant
companions. We accompanied him in all his
travels. -None of us stayed in any hotel.
For long distances we traveled by train in
the third class (now abolished). Since thiFd
class was always overcrowded with travelers
from the lowest strata of society, the railway
administration placed a full third -class com-
partment at Gandhi's disposal in which we
alone traveled.
Gandhi's travel plans wFre Widely publi-
cized in the press, and so huge crowds of ad-
mirers would throng railway stations to have
his darshan. Crowds contributed cash and
gifts in 'kind liberally fo Gandhi. All these
were accepted and kept, in the
compartment. By the time we
reached the final destination, the
compartment was full of hand-
spun clotl), food, etc., which were
given to- local . welfare organizai
tions.
Gandhi made a vast tract of do-
nated land in Wardha, central In-
dia, his headquarters. He
it Si vagram, "service vmage." He
intended to make it a model self-
contained township, -India's lead-
ing industrialist, Mr. Birla, placed /
huge funds at the disposal of
Gandhi. A number of people from
different walks of offered
their services to Gandhi. Among them were
expert doctors, agriculturists.and craftsmen./
They lived with Gandhi in mud huts with
thatched roofs. Free boarding and lodging
was all they received for their services . .;
. By V KALYANAM, Chennai
FEBRUARY, 1997 HINDUISM rODAY 29
- -
. .
A"'housewife in Tamil N,.aou completes a symbol-rich, mandala-
like design, called kola'!!L to beautify and protect the home
Endearing images emboding intuitions of the spirit
adorn Hindu art, architecture and iconography
YMBOLS ADORN OUR WORLD AND MIND AT EVERY TURN-
in our spiritual, social and political experience. A ring or
golden pendant serves to silently attest to and
wedded love. On a mountainous road in any country, a sign
a truck silhouette on a steeply angled line warns drivers
of dropping grades ahead. The red cross signals aid and com-
fort in crises. Golden arches tell the vegan to beware. Among
the best known symbols in the world are the simple numerals: 0, 1,
2,. 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8 and 9. They originated in ancient India as charac-
ters of the Brahmi script. Now and then, historic images or happen-
ings are supercharged into symbols. The awesome mushroom cloud
of the atom bomb will forever represent the terrifying specter of nu-
clear destruction.
It is humanity's sacred symbols, its icons of Divinity and Reality,
that wield the greatest power to inform and transform conscious-
ness. Taoists gazing upon a yin-yang symbol, Navaho Indians deli-
cately pouring a feather symbol in a sand painting, Muslims em-
broidering the crescent moon and star, Tibetan Buddhists
contemplating an intricate mandala, Christians kneeling before the
cross, Hindus meditating upon the Aum, Pagans parading the ankh
at Stonehenge-all these images, and hundreds more, communicate
cosmic belief structures and function as gateways to inner truths.
To the societies of prehistory (ca. 7000-4000 BeE), living fully in
the raw splendor and power of nature, symbols and icons represent-
ed supernatural states and beings-as they still do for us today. A
stylized image of a snake coiled around the top of a clay vase com-
municated a complex and abstract idea. Anthropologist Marija
Gimbutas interprets it as cosmic life force and regeneration.
Wielded by mystic priests, or shamans, symbols serve as psychic
30 HINDUISM TODAY FEBRUARY, 1997
tools for invoking invisible cosmic beings and shaping the forces of
nature. Thus, to conjure power, a medieval alchemist would enclose
himself in a magic circle (a worldwide symbol) filled with geomet-
ric pictograms symbolizing astral plane realities.
Today, as in prehistoric epochs, religious symbols often draw on
nature forces. The sun flares into prominence among these symbols,
appearing in a spectrum of motifs across cultures from Mexico to
Mongolia. Hinduism developed dozens of solar symbols, including
the swastika and the wheel of the sun, adopted by the Buddhists as
their eight-spoked dharma wheel.
Hinduism has amassed a range of didactic icons from thousands
of years back. Coins found in the Indus Valley have carried the sym-
bols of the cow and of the yogi seated in meditation across a 6,000-
year corridor of time. Many images from the Vedic age have become
popular motifs in Kashmiri carpets and Chidambaram saris. These
serve, Significantly, to identify and distinguish members of a sect or
community. The simple red dot worn on the forehead of many .de-
vout Hindus is both the mark of our dharmic heritage and the per-
sonal reminder to all who wear it that we must see things not only
with our physical eyes, but with the mind's eye, the Third Eye.
India's adepts and seers have excelled at symbolic imagery, trans-
forming mudras (hand gestures) into instantly recognized emblems
and transmitters of a Deity's power or a particular frequency of en-
ergy. Each accoutrement of the dozens of Deities in the Hindu pan-
theon conveys a cosmic function, force or capacity. Today, this an-
cient magic is carried forward in a multitude of ways, from the
temple priests invocation to the Indian housewife's drawing of mul-
ti-colored designs, called kolams or rangoli, on the ground as auspi-
cious auguries, household blessings and greetings.

Ganesha is the Lord
of Obstacles and
Ruler of Dharma.
Seated upon His
throne, He guides
our karmas through
creating and remov-
ing obstacles from
our path. We seek His permission and
blessings in every undertaking. Aum.


=e-=
.{I'Yil.l.' 'II i( ....'Jr·
i(('(lr·
il,+YI.r\ il :
(i+:I"I:+,I.\
..NI1 iifw:+.f\
..t:\i lll (i':W:U>
il ll il ifilll ll ll :

Gopuras are the
towering stone gate-
ways through
which pilgrims en-
ter the South Indi-
an temple. Richly
ornamented with
myriad sculptures
of the divine pantheon, their tiers symbol-
ize the several planes of existence. Aum.
1JU1q if.o
. Pranava Aum is the
root mantra and
soundless sound
from which all cre-
ation issues forth.
It is associated with
Lord Ganesha. Its
three syllables
stand at the beginning and end of every
sacred verse, every human act. Aum.
Dhvaja, "flag," is the
orange or red banner
flown above temples,
at festivals and in pro-
cessions. It is a symbol
of victory, signal to all
that "Sanatana Dhar-
ma shall prevail." Its
color betokens the sun's
life-giving glow. Aum.

Swastika is the
symbol of auspi-
ciousness and
good fortune-lit-
erally "It is well."
The right-angled
arms of this ancient
sun sign denote the
indirect way that Divinity is apprehended:
by intuition and not by intellect. Aum.

Sri Chakra yantra
is central to Shakta
worship and medi-
tation. Often ren-
dered in three di-
mensions in stone
or metal, its nine
interlocking trian-
gles represent Siva-ShaktH; multidimen-
sional manifestations. Aum.

Gaja is the ele-
phant, king of
beasts and sign of
royalty and power.
He is Indra's mount,
denoting the do-
minion of Heaven's
King. In larger Hin-
du temples and elaborate festive pageantry
there is always a noble elephant. Aum.

Padma is the lotus
flower, Nelumbo nu-
cifera, perfection of
beauty, associated
with Deities and the
chakras, especially
the 1,000-petaled
sahasrara. Rooted in
the mud, its blossom is a promise of purity
and unfoldment. Aum.

Nandi is Lord Siva's
mount, or vahana.
This huge white
bull with a black
tail, whose name
means "joyful," is
diSciplined animali-
ty kneeling at Siva's
feet, the ideal devotee, the pure joy and
strength of Saiva Dharma. Aum.
C
Vata, the banyan
tree, Ficus indicus,
symbolizes Hindu-
ism, which
branches out in
all directions,
draws from many
roots, spreads shade
far and wide, yet stems from one great trunk.
Siva as Silent Sage sits beneath it. Aum.
ar;('51T:4i§tJ
Kalachakra,
"wheel, or circle, of
time," is the symbol
of perfect creation,
of the cycles of ex-
istence. Time and
space are inter-
woven, and eight
spokes mark the directions, each ruled by a
Deity and having a unique quality. Aum.

Shikhara is the
massive stone su-
perstructure which
rises above the
cave-like sacred
sanctuaries of tem-
ples in North India.
It is a living model
of Mount Meru, the center of the universe
where the Gods themselves reside. Aum.
FEBRUARY, 1997 HINDUISM TODAY 31
5W
Mudras are hand
gestures employed
in sacred dance and
puja to focus the
mind on abstract
matters and to
charge the body
with spiritual pow-
er. This is chinmudra, the gesture of real-
ization, reflection and silent teaching. Aum.

Trishula, Siva's tri-
dent carried by Hi-
malayan yogis, is
the royal scepter of
the Saiva Dharma.
Its triple prongs be-
token desire, action
and wisdom; ida,
pingala' and sushumna; and the gunas-
sattva, rajas and tamas. Aum.

Thlsi is the holy
basilplant,Ocimum
sanctum, sacred to
Vaishnavites. Prayer
beads are made
from its wood or
smooth seeds, and
the shrub is wor-
shiped in the home as Lakshmi, bringing
prosperity, protection and long life. Aum.
32 HINDUI SM TODAY FEBRUARY, 1997
"1e,(113I
Nataraja is Siva as
"King of Darice."
Carved in stone or
caste in bronze, His
ananda tandava, the
fierce ballet of bliss,
dances the cosmos
into and out of exis-
tence within the fiery
arch of flames denot-
ing consciousness.
Aum.

Sivalinga is the an-
cient mark or sym-
bol of God. This el-
liptical stone is a
formless form beto-
kening Parasiva,
I That which can
never be described
or portrayed. The pitha, pedestal, repre-
sents Siva's manifest Parashakti. Aum.
is the no-
ble red rooster who
heralds each
dawn, calling all
to awake and
arise. He is a sym-
bol of the im-
minence of spiritual
unfoldment and wisdom. As a fighting
cock, he crows from Lord Skanda's battIe
flag. Aum.

Shatkona, "six-
pointed star," is two
interlocking trian-
gles; the upper
stands for Siva, pu-
rusha and fire, the
lower for Shakti,
prakriti and water.
Their union gives birth to. Sanatkumara,
whose sacred number is six. Aum.

Dipastambha, the
standing oil lamp,
symbolizes the dis-
pelling of ignorance
and awakening of
the divine light
within us. Its soft
glow illumines the
temple or shrine room, keeping the atmos-
phere pure and serene. Aum.

Amra, the pleasing
paisley design, is
modeled after a
mango and associ-
ated with Lord
Ganesha. Mangos
are the sweetest of
fruits, symbolizing
auspiciousness and the happy fulfillment of
legitimate worldly desires. Aum.

Shankha, the wa-
ter-born conch,
symbolizes the ori-
gin of existence,
which evolves in
spiraling spheres.
In ancient days it
signaled battle's vic-
tory. In the Lords hands it is our protection
from evil, sounding the sacred "Aum."

Chandra is the
moon, ruler of the
watery realms and
of emotion, testing
place of migrating
souls. Surya is the
sun, ruler of intel-
lect, source of
truth. One is pingala and lights the day;
the other is ida and lights the night. Aum.
..

Rudraksha seeds,
Eleocarpus gani-
trus, are prized as
the compassionate
tears Lord Siva
shed for mankinds
suffering. Saivites
wear malas of them
always as a symbol of Gods love, chanting
on each bead, Namah Sivaya."

Urdhoopundra is
the royal mark
upon the forehead
of Vaishnavites.
1Wo white lines are
VIshnus foot print
resting upon a lotus
base. The red rep-
resents Lakshmi. Thus, the Lords lowest
part is worshiped on our highest. Aum.

Shula, Lord Muru-
ganS holy lance, is
His protective pow-
er, our safeguard in
adversity. Its tip is
wide, long and
sharp, signifying in-
cisive discrimina-
tion and spiritual which must
be broad, deep and penetrating. Aum.

lHkona, the trian-
gle, is a symbol of
God Siva which,
like the Sivalinga,
denotes His Ab-
solute Being. It
represents the ele-
ment fire and por-
trays the process of spiritual ascent and
Liberation spoken of in scripture. Aum.
cpsor
Lord Krishna is one
of the most beloved
Gods of the Hindu
pantheon. The em-
bodiment of loving
closeness, shown here
as a playful child, he is
best known as the
Supreme Personage
of the epic Maha-
bharata. Aum.
Shri paduka, the
sacred sandals
worn by saints,
sages and satgurus,
symbolize the pre-
ceptors holy feet,
which are the
source of his grace.
Prostrating before him, we humbly touch
his feet for release from worldliness. Aum.
Go, the cow, is a
symbol of the earth,
the nourisher, the
ever-giving, unde-
manding provider.
Th the Hindu, all
animals are sacred,
and we acknowl-
edge this reverence of life in our special
affection for the gentle cow. Aum.
i?#'I 0 1S(i5
-...0
Kamandalu, the
water vessel, is car-
ried by the Hindu
monastic. It sym-
bolizes his Simple,
self-contained life,
his freedom from
worldly needs, his
constant sadhana and tapas, and his oath
to seek God everywhere. Aum.
"'11lT
Naga, the cobra, is
a symbol of kun-
dalini power, cos-
mic energy coiled
and slumbering
within man. It in-
spires seekers to
overcome misdeeds
and suffering by lifting the serpent power
up the spine into God Realization. Aum.

Kalasha, a husked
coconut circled by
five mango leaves
on a pot, is used in
puja to represent
any God, especially
Lord Ganesha.
Breaking a coconut
before His shrine is the ego's shattering to
reveal the sweet fruit inside. Aum.

BiZva is the bael
tree. Its fruit, flow-
ers and leaves are
all sacred to Siva,
Liberation's sum-
mit. Planting ABgle
marmelos trees
around home or
temple is sanctifying, as is worshiping a
Linga with bilva leaves and water. Aum.

Ankusha, the goad
held in Lord Gane-
sha's right hand, is
used to remove
obstacles from
dharma's path. It is
the force by which
all wrongful things
are repelled from us, the sharp prod
which spurs the dullards onward. Aum.

Mushika is Lord
Ganesha's mount,
the mouse, tradi-
tionally associated
with abundance in
family life. Under
cover of darkness,
seldom visible yet
always at work, Mushika is like Gods un-
seen grace in our lives. Aum.
F E BRUAR Y , 1 997 HINDUI SM TODAY 33
EUROPE'
Hin,dus'
Colonize
Lisbon
Major center nears
completion in Portugal
'Ix KILOMETERS FROM THE LISBON
city center sits Paco du Lumiar. Once
home to Portugal's kings, it is now a
small enclave of modest houses near
the airport. Yet, the Comunidade Hindu de
Portugal, an organization founded in 1982, is
restoring some of the region's grandeur, In-
dian style, by forging a temple complex tout"-
ea amorig the, largest outside Indial The
massive gray columns of the unfinished
colossus now herald what is to become a
cultural citadei for Portugal's Hindus and a
center of social service fOf all.
Gandhi's way: A tribute unveiled by Mario Soares (right), preSident of Portugal in 1993
History reyeals a hidd'en irony here. Cen-
turies ago, the Portuguese were imperious
conquerors. Their forays into Ip.dia and Sri
Lanka 'focused significantly on destroying
Hindu edifices [see sidebar beLow]' But Hin-
dvism survived, and Hindus are rebuilding
their temples around the world-even in Por-
tugal, the land of their would-be conqueror.
Like many European nations, Portugal is
adjusting to the arrival of immigrants from
former colonies. In 1974, after ilie Portuguese
Revolution, the AfriQan colony of Mozam-
bique became an ip.dependent natipn. Be-
tween 1977 and 1980, much of the large Hin-
du community there emigrated to Portugal.
Mostly of Indian descent, they jOined with
from other former Portuguese terri-
tories, 'Such as Daman and Diu in Western
India. Sharing the languages' Portuguese and
Gujarati, they· banded together to preserve
their Indian and Hindu inheritance.
Hitesh Ramniklal, a manage-
ment consultant, recalls, "My fathe; helped
start the with only five or six
other frunilies." Now it's 8,000 strong. Ram-
niklal still feels closeness to India, despite the
fact it was his great-grandfather who long ago
left ,Bharat for Mo:z;ambique, and his
who emigrated to Lisbon in 1975. Ramniklal
was just 11 years old then. He regrets that his
generation has failed to study Gujarati,
though he himself is fluent. However, he hap-
pily that recently the Comunidade
convinced the Lisbon education ministry to
teach Gujarati in three public schools on Sat-
urdays. The program ;;erves approximately
120 children.
Portugal's Failed Assault on Hinduism
dominance by the rulers of the
rebel state of Sitawaka, the
Portuguese effectively con-
trolled the southwest ooastal
region. They a1so managed to
snuff out the last Tamil king-
dom ever to rule Jaffua as an
independent state. The fur-
tuguese' Roman Cath.olicism
enjoyed a special relationship
with the ruling p@wers. Con-
'Verts to Catiho1icism under the
Portuguese gained a privileged
status." The effects of this dom-
ination still linger in Sri Lanka
and India, especially in Goa.
OSITIONED ON THE
southwestern rim of the
European continent,
Portugal is a small country,
34,170 square miles, roughJy
equivalent in size to USA's In-
diana, but its influence in
Asian histery has been dramat-
ic and, in some eases, devastat-
ing. One of the oldest nations
in Europe, it began its colonial,
Catholic-inspired crusade in
1297. Its many conquests in-
cluded India and Sri Lanka.
The Portuguese promulgated
Catholicism wherever they
landed, largely by denigrating
the beliefs and desecrating and
destroying tihe buildings and
icons of the "heathens." Hindu
devotees suffered
painfully, as the Por-
tuguese methodically
ravaged their temples
in India and Sri Lan-
ka and undermined
the faith of many
through coercive, cal-
cuated conversion.
An Insight Guides
book on Sri Lanka
Gritiques the impact of
Portugal's presence
Algeria
there, "European ambi- Southwest Europe: POrlfugal is at left
tions arrived with the
Portuguese early in the 16th
century. They were more inter-
ested in controlling the islands
commerce than in absorbing its
territory. In the process, fuey
intruded in the affairs of the
coastal regions. By 1600, after
converting some of the Sin-
halese royalty to Catholicism
and breaking a strong bid for
34 HINDUISM TODAY 1997
In succeeding centuries,
PortugaJ:s powers steadily
diminished. Now, though a
member of the European Free
Trade Association and NATO,
it remains one of the poorest
countries in Western Europe.
Religion and culture are paramount con- C I N E M K..
cerns, but present conditions also require
contending with society's more mundane
difficulties. K!).ntilql Jamnadas, president of
the <;omunidade, head of Portugal} largest
baked goods factor.y, DanCake, and the I
moving force behind the project, spoke with
circumspection about these obstacles. "We
face several day-to-day problems, and the
past held many more. Due to the compre-
hension and help of the Por- .,-
tUgD,yse government, we have
'·Making. of the
Benegal's film depicts Gandhi's metamorphosis
from shy bru:rister to independence leader
· slowly overcome them." \
Privatiom One case in point
centers on shantytowns in and
around major Portuguese cities.
These are primarily occupied by
new immigrants from former
colonies, some Hindu. The Lis-
bon city.-council has vowed to pro-
vide housing for these inhabitants
by the year 2000. However, a re-
cent poll reveals that 43% of resi-
dents from Lisbon and ;I?orto, the
nation's largest cities, are 'averse to
having their apartment buildings
earmarked for such housing. ,
When asked if the Hindu den-
izens' of the shantytowns would
· be provided for, Jw,nnadas con-
ceded, "Tlj.is is a difficult issue,
because there is no specific solu-
tion." But he expressed confi-
dence that Lisbon would success-
fully 'meet their goal. He also ·has
faith that the Comunidade will
be able to aid its ' memIfers who
are faced· with discrimination.
Jamnadas . stressed that these
tiI\late story. It is concerned
with so much that had to change
in Gandhi before he became the
Mahatma." The film documents /
Gandhi's 21 years in South
Africa,. from/ age 19, and the
changes' which came over this
anglicized, London-trained bar-
rister as he encountered the
racial discrimination and bias of
the colonials first hand. There
are stirring scenes where Gand-
hi stands up for exploited inden-
tured laborers llnd builds up
their awareness of their rights.
. . are goals the Comunidade is not
prepared to contend with toaay.
The group is still in a formative
state, and many objectives have
In the making: Gandhi (Rajit Kapur) and Kasturba (Pallavi Joshi)
Rajit Kapur, 'a film and theater
actor from Mumbai, gives a
strong performance as Gandhi,
and Pallavi Joshi, who has 42
teleserials to her credit, wonder-
fully portrays his wife Kastura.
Viewers may be surprised to see
Gandhi's quiet, subdued spouse
played as a strong and vocal
woman. Benegal explains, "Peo-
ple get the impression that she
was a doormat, but she was very
much he:;) own person, and a
strong-willed She got
him to change his views, and he
became a strong supporter of
independent women." The film
yet to be realized, he said. "Once we have
completed our complex," he asserted, "the HILE THE WORLD THINKS OF GAN-
facilities and services offered to our Hindu as the sainted man in kh"adi loin-
men anp women, or anyone else for that mat- leaning on a cane, there is an-
ter, will be greatly increased." , Gandhi-a painfully shy young
Despite encumbrances, job 'training pro- man struggling to formulate his ideas, the
grams sponsored by the European Commu- man before he became the Mahatma. This is
nity are offered at tIre complex and are open the Mohandas K. Gandhi documented in
to Indians and Portuguese alike. For the "The Making o{the Mahatma," a collabora-
past five years, the group has organized a tion of National Film Development Corpo-
blood drive in conjunction with the Por- ration of India and the SABC of South
tuguese Blood Institution. And the 70-per- Africa. This film about Gandhi's experi-
cent completed complex is already host to . ments wit}{.truth and nonviolence in colo-
religious festivals and events.. nial South Africa was' produced in India and
In a room strewn with ardlitectural blue- . South Africa. It is based on the book Ap-
prints, Jamnadas ventured that the temple prentices"hip of a Mahatma by Fatima Meer
· will be finished by the end of 1997. "If more and directed by one of. India's most
people gave, we'd be done a little sooner," he ed directors, Shyam Beriegal. .
laughed. They have good reasoll to finish next "The Making of the Mahatma" premiered
year, as Lisbon is scheduled to host Expo '98 in November at New York's Guild 'Theater.
celebrating the SoOth anniversary of Vasco The filTI;t intentionally lacks the panoramic
da Gama's voyage to India. -..I proportions and epic scale of Attenboroughs
I ANGELA STARITA, New York "Gandhi." Benegal says, "This is a more in-
I
is shot i n the area where Gandhi actually
lived one hundred years ago, inclu,ding llls
old house on Loop Street.
South Africa's president, His Excellency
Nelson Manuela, a follower of Gandhian
philosophy, was deeply moved by the pro- .
duction: "I am glad that-our youth will see
this film. It will show them the depth from
which our struggle grew and the sacrifices
t;hat were made by people protesting against
what was done to us in the past."
Etching Gandhi with all his faults and
foibles makes him mor
7
accessible as a role
model than the haloed,'saihtly father ·of the
nation who could dQ no wrong. This young
Gandhi, wllO had failed many, many times
before, struggles with his very human temp-
tations and fears. It shows how an ordinary
man rose to extraordinary heights, becom-
ing the leader of lOO,OOO people in a South
African satyagraha, a war violence,
the prelude to his emancipation of the sub-
continent's 350 million Indians. -..I
FEBRUARY, 1997 H I'NDUISM TODAY 35
ASTROLOGY
,
Mahatma Gandhi's
, \,.
Life, by :the Stars
Venus, Mercur:y, Moon and
Jupiter life-and death
BY ULLAL
N
AHATMA GANDHI IS.
considered by many
flected by the Libra planetS'
(Venus, Mars and Mer-
cury), giving him ufutsual
poise, balance stability.
Saturn is a planet of dis-
cipline and and
is connected with order
and restraint. It is also con-
nected to concerns for hu-
, the greatest hero in
modern Indian histo-
ry. Hindu astrology pffers
valuable insights into' this
unusual man and the timing
of the major events of his
life. His horoscope reflects
seVeral powerful planetary
combinations, cp,lled yogas,
which gave him the extraor-
dinary strength, power and
singularity of purpose nec-
essary to make him,a "
leader of masses. Addition-
ally, the general placement
f I
-h· ·
j
Mantra am:: Created by Sa-
raja Nagarathnam by writ-
il1g "Ram" in tiny letters
. manitarian causes and
peace. This is how,.jn its
2nd-house placement, Sat-
urn brought the idea of
fasting as well as ahimsa
(nonviolence). This config-
uration was the seed for his
unuSual methods.
o p anets gav.e 1m
strength of character and an idealistic and
passionate nature. ,
-/His has Libra rising with Venus,
the ruler of Libra, creating malavi« yoga .
and resulting in a compassionate and bril-
liant mind. FUrther, Venus is occupying the
constellation of expansive, benevolent
Jupiter, which Venus' cooperative
abilities; thus we see great power for work-
ing with and influencing people.,
Mars, the "warrior" planet of vigor and
initiative, ruler of the 2nd and 7th houses,
is also situated in the rising sign, which
gave him both physical and mental stami- .
na. This also resulted in a charming and
magnetic personality, and an intensity and
passion of purpose.
Mercury, ruler of the 9th and 12th hous-
es, is well placed in the rising sign in con-
junction with Venus, crea,ting a raja yoga
bringing sharpness to his'(nental faculties . .
Added to that, Mercury is conjunct Mars,
wbich endowed him wlth the power of
persuasion and conviction in his beliefs.
Even though the Jupiter in Aries
is a maraka (meaning "death inflicting"),
Jupiter's aspect on the rising
sign has enHanced the positiv.e qualities re-
f
36 HlNDUISM TODAY F E BRUARY, 1997
His powerful Moon in
the 10th house occupy.ing its own sign is
conjunct malefic Rahu, which brought an
er!J.otional and volatile per.sonality. Moon
conjunct Rahu ana. in angle house (square
or opposite aspect) to Mercury normally
would have, brought insanity to the person.
However, here, because the Moon is occu-
its own sign and is in a perfect angle
to Jupiter, it has created a powertul gajake-
sari y,oga. This yoga enhances the powerful
Moon which was prominently placed in the
10th house, the house of success, career and
Rahu, also significantly
placed in the.lOth house, is likewise en-
hanced because of its association with a
strong Moon. A strqng Rahu, in he house
0f career, made Gandhi liberal and uncon:
. ventional, with the added passion and en-
ergy of a: powerful Moon.
He came into fame during the Rahu cy-
cle itself (1922-1940), and during the
Jupiter dasha, its maraka effect, he
was assasinated. Although Jupiter
his demise, it simultaneously brought him
enormous popularity, and he martyred
in IDS death. This is a good example of how
a marakll; can bring both
tremes of positive and negative effects.
Charki Dadri: Res'cuers recover girl's Body
ORISIS
,RSS Helps at
Delhi Air Crash
A gruesome
W
E COl:JLD NOT SAVE ANY LIVES, BUT
we are doing the only thing we pos-
sibly coula for .the dead-thatli what .
we are trained to do in any calamity,"
RSS worker Rajesh Jangi told Reuters News
Service at the site of India's worst-ever avia-
tion disaster. A Saudi Arabian Airlines 747
taking off from Delhi airport had collided
with an arriving Kazakhstan Airlines cargo
plane on November 13th, killing all3li9 per-
sons aboard the planes. Debris was spread
over a'large area 60 miles west of New Del-
hi. Cause of the crash undeter-
mined, 'though flight recorder: data will give
more clues. Delhi air controllers warned
'Both planes of their close proximity.
RSS (Rashtriya Sevak Sangh) volunteers,
with saffron headbands, were among the
first to arrive at the site. But could do
nothing beyond collect the. bodies. Cadres
brought in tractors for hauling, and ice and ,
cloth to and cover the corpses.
--Most of the dead were Muslims, some 0n
pilgrimage to Mecca.; It doesn't matter who
these people are. They are humafl beings,"
local RSS leader Jeet Ram Gupta told Reuters.
Victims"relatives expressed gratitude to the
volunteers, police, army and villagers.
Ninety-four victims were still uniderlti-
fied a few days lateJ' With no way to deter-
mine their religion, the corpses were divid:
ed according to the percentage of Hindus,
Muslims and Christians on the passenger
lists, and burial or cremation rites per-
formed accordingly by priests of each faith.
The oft-maligned RSS has an impressive
of service in emer$encies. They marr-
shalled thousands of volunteers in the 1993
Maharashtra earthquake and earlier major
Indian disasters. ..,;,,;..
Peace in Puttaparthi, India
A Yajna will be held in
Puttaparthi, Jan 16-Feb 2,
1997, for national integra-
tion and the general well-
being of Indian
people. 108 Pandits will
participate. We seek gen-
erous contributions for
this worthy cause. Make checks payable to: Sri Shirdi Sai
Baba Temple, 1449 Abers Creek Rd., Monroeville, 15146-
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INVESTING IN THE FUTURE OF HINDUISM
Opening day: Hindu holy man a sip at Delhi's new McDonald's restaurant
B U S-1 N E S S
McDonald's .Deli in'Delhi
The: granddaddy of fast-food chains
in .India with a mutton Mac"
I
HE BEEFCAKE AT THE MISS WORLD
beauty contest in Bangalore is getting a
lot more press, but the opening of a beef-
free McDonald's in Delhi may portend
rm equal onslaught to Indias culture and
economy. Conceding to hotly debated Hindu
sensibilities, the Delhi franchise is the first
of McDonalds 20,000 restaurants in 95
countries to not sell beef. By carefully posi-
tioning itself as '10cally owned" (fifty per-
cent anyway, by Indian real estate magnate
Vikram Bakshi) and by using local products,
it oPened without the opposition suffered by
rivals Pizza Hut and Kentucky Fried Chick-
McDonald's invented for India a "Ma-
haraja Mac" ,made from mutton (no consid-
eration for sheep sensibilities) and a
deep-fried vegetable patty-ba ed Mac for
McDonald's expects to open 20
India outlets in the next three years.
Why aoes India need McDonald's? Bharat
already has local "fast food" on every street
corner. The answer seems to be the same as
why needs American MTV, American
soap operas and .American-style beauty
pageants. Once McDonalds, P(zza Hut,
KFC and others establish themselves in In-
many regional restaurants 'will be put
out qf business-a phenomenon suffered all
over the world. A time will come when
those golden arches will dominate every In-
dian city, as they do in other nations.
McDonald's is no stranger to controversy,
and tne strangest of all its skirmishes is cur-
rently taking place} n London. There it has
been mired in a multi-million-dollar, three-
year libel suit-the longest in' Englands his-
tory-against two penniless environmental
activists, Dave Morris and Helen Steel. They
attracted the wrath of the $24-billion giant
by handing out a leaflet, "Wl;1'.lt's Wrcmg
with McDonald's," accusing the corporation
(with 580 UK outlets) of abusing its work-
ers, producing unhealthy food and destroy-
..-ing "vast areas of the Central American
'rainforest to raise its peef." Morris and Steel
represent themselves; McDonafd's head
lawyer charges £2,000 a day. "It's one thing
to sell junk food and quite another to pro-
mote it as being nutritious," states Morris.
He is especially upset that much of "the
company's yearly J1.5-billion advertising
budget is ·aimed at children, who·company'
research found s,trongly influence parents'
restaurant choices. The trial has turned into
an embarrassing series of revelations about
McDonald's, many supported by their own
executives and experts. Stockholders are
aBhast at both the expense and the negative
publicity, especially on the internet-httJ'>://
www.mcspotlight.orglcase/-being generat-
ed by the trial, and urge a settlement. :11ii:i,
His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupiida.
Life Comes From Life
"Almost everyone in the world is under
the false impression that life is born
from matter. Life does not come from
matter. Matter is generated from life. Science is
based on an incorrect theory, therefore people
are suffering. When these mistaken modern
scientific theories are corrected, people will
become happy ... "
These remarks were made by His Divine
Grace A.c. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada,
founder-ilcilrya of the International Society for
Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON), in 1973.
Prabhupada taught the Bhagavad-gUil's
conclusion that the world belongs to the
Supreme Lord, SrI Krishna. Although this
world is temporary, everything in it should be
used in His service.
Thus, while Prabhupada condemned the
atheistic conclusions of some speculative
sciences, he urged scientists to apply their
genius to understanding God. In 1974, he
established the Bhaktivedanta Institute, an
autonomous research foundation, to promote
the study of consciousness within the
framework of contemporary science.
-'
The Institute, headed by Srila Prabhupada's
disciple Dr. T.D. Singh, hosted the "Second
world Congress for the Synthesis of Science
and Religion;' in Calcutta, January 9-12, 1997.
A thousand participants, including leading
scholars and several Nobel laureates, met to
explore and highlight areas of commonality
between scientific knowledge and Vedic
wisdom.
Dr. Richard Thompson and Michael Cremo
are also Prabhupada's disciples. As authors of
the internationally acclaimed book Forbidden
Archeology, they were featured on NBC's
time special The Mysterious Origins of Man
hosted by Charlton Heston. Their controversial
book has challenged the scientific community
to rethink popular theories of evolution, thus
opening the door for a scientific explanation of
life that includes God.
No other Indian in modern times has had
such a worldwide spiritual influence as Srila
Prabhupada. Over the past year, people of many
faiths and traditions have been celebrating the
centennial of his birth. You are invited to join us .
in saluting the life and work of this great soul.
Thanks to Srila Prabhupada ...
Scientists are Studying the Vedas to Better Understand Life.
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11
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Meditation for All Walks of Life
Vasanthi Bhat, expert and
popular teacher of hatha
yoga, now brings to people of
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meditation-on CD or cas-
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DcMd Frawley
('hnodeva Shostro), Oirecfol
The Oracle of Rama
India's Renowned Oracle
by David Frawley
The Tibetan
Book of Healing
by Dr Lopsang Rapgay
American Institute of Vedic Studies
P.O. BOX 8357
Sante Fe, NM 847504-8357
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$12.95208 pages, illustrated
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The Ancient Healing Chants ...
Allow the beauty of these
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---
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Home. Valmiki Ramayana • Unknown facts revealed
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Writings and Music of Sri Chinmoy
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Sri Chinmoys inspirational
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answers to questions asked
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Music includes soul-stirring
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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.
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Lord Ganesha is your Best Friend
Such is the message of The Story of
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Books by K. N. Rao
We carry a complete
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HEALING
Antidotes
;
Fo{ 'An9{op2use
,
Not just something that happens to women,
menopause can be a man thing, too
;'
BY DR. DEVANANDA TANDAVAN, M.D.
RE YOU A MAN 45 YEARS
or older who is finding
himself bec0ming more
irritable and argumenta-
tive than before? Have you be-
come a procrastinator? Do you
feel you are not the that
you once were whose libido,
seems to be decreasing as your
spouse's is increasing? Are you
more emotional and sentimental
these days, frequently responding to situa-
tions with tears? Has proving your virility
gained a new importance, enough to have
you change your style o£dress to a more
sporty look- no longer donning subdued
and drab color,:; ? Havp you been tempted to
buy a flashy new sportscar recently, per-
haps a red Jaguar or Mercedes Benz? Or
d}l you say to yourself, "It is not my fault
that I cannot respond intimately anymore.
It must be my wife. Maybe I should take on
a mistress." F1nally, do you tend to blame
others for all of these changes?
If you fit this picture, you may be pass-
ing_ through male menQpause, .known in the
US as andropause and in Europe as viro-
paU$e. Symptoms during this ch:mging
time' in life include a defintte, although
slight, change in physical and mental atti-
tudes toward sex. Usually there is no hor-
monal cause to explain this midlife crises,
as men remain fertile into late life. Normal-
ly there is no decrease in the male .
hormone, testosterone, although a slow
abatement may develop, usually after age
65. However, the anxiety that is felt during
this period of natural readjustment to life
and its demands may nor'pnly be traumatic
but catastrophic. Since most men take
pride in their virility, fitness and physical
prowess, it is truly a shock when they dis-
cover they are not as agile or adaptive as
they once weJ-e. ' .
Retirement may become a real problem.
If work is no longer there to take up active
I
44 :tf.INDULsM TODAY FEBRUARY, 1997
time, and it has not been re-
placed with other tasks,)ife
may seem tedious and useless.
A man's self-esteem can be
threatened, making him defen-
sive and miserable. He
experience high stress levels for
the first time in his life, which
may result in complications,
such as alcohol abuse or per-
haps even drugs, ./
Primarily andropause occurs among
white-collar men who have high goals,
perhaps higher than their life's achieve-
ments. Frequent thoughts of getting old
and fears of death, loss of confidence dur-
ing intimacY"retirement and of being fired
from his job CaI\ amp1ify the stress. If that I
weren't enollgh, psychological changes can
provoke a fear oflosing physical and men-
tid stability.
The more a man is "me" oriented, the
more likely he is to have symptoms of an-
dropause. It is far more common in the
West than in calmer Oriental cultures;
however, this is clianging as the East be-
comes m'ore Westernized. Not men
pass;.!hrough this andropause, and it is
possible to prevent the occurrence alto-
ge,ther by consciously adopting more real-
istic goals. Treatment of andropause is
primarily psyghological and philosophical.
Controversial hormone replacement thera-
py is not recommended: Simplf recog-
nizing and understanding it as a syndrome
. may in itself decrease the severity of
Male menopause is very real
and can be serious, but adhering to a
dharrhic path can aid in diminishing or
even 'bypassing the experience.
DR. TANDAVAN, 76, retired nuclea( physi-
cian and hospital staff president
i
lives in
Chtpago, where he specializes in alternative
healing arts. Visit his home page at the
HINDUISM TODAY Website.
EVOLUTIONS
HONORED: Pundit Lutchmee Persad for
50 years of devoted service to the Hin-
dus of llinidad and Tobago. So far, he
has performed 110
yajnas, married 800
couples, developed
3,000 followers and
trained 20 pundits,
some of whom serve
in Canada and the
US. He introduced
the use of English
to explain Hindu
scriptures and
formed a Caribbean Pundits' Council.
ACQUITTED: Pushpendra Singh, Sumer
Singh and others of murder in the 1987
death of Roop
Kanwar in Ra-
jasthan, who
burned to death
on the funeral
pyre of her hus-
band. F1ve thou-
sand villagers
who watched
said she did so
voluntarily in
the Rajput tradition of san. The prose-
cution was unable to produce a single
eyewitness to contradict their account.
DEPARTED: Sri Swami Rama, founder of
the successful Himalayan Institute in
the USA and India, of unknown caus-
es, on November 13 at Debra Dun, In-
dia. Swami Rama's ability to stop his
heartbeat under clinical observation
astounded American physicians in the
1970s. His last project was a massive
medical facility serving the area
around Dehru Dun.
CELEBRATED: Birth centennial of
ISKCON founder A. C. Bhaktlvedanta
Swami Srlla Prabhupada, throughout
1996. As part of worldwide celebra-
tions, devotees spent a year gathering
sacred waters from 1,008 holy rivers
and pools. Bottles were sent worldwide
for bathing Srila Prabhupada's statue on
September 5.
Doordarshan
TV in India an-
nounced a five-
year series on
the founders
life, entitled
'i\bhay Cha-
ran," now in
production. "Abhay Charan"
New Release: Prophet of a New Era
The biography of Gurudeo Pandit
Shree Rani Sharma Acharya, known
as "Pragya Avatar," the incarnation
of purified intelligence. This unique
book is powerful, impressive and
inspiring. It makes an ideal gift.
English or Gujarati, US$5 plus postg.
For details: Tel: 1-847-692-7712.
Gayatri Pariwar Yugnirman Yojna
Gayatri Yug Literature Center
8413 W. North Terr.
Niles, IL 60724-2329 USA
Site Acquisition, Retail Leasing
Nitya Nadesan
Associate Broker
Seattle Pacific Realty, Inc.
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Tel: 206-682-3100
Fax: 206-682-3011
Access/mobile 206-399-8335
E-mail: nitya@aoLcom
Natural Healing Through Ayurveda
Pictured is our featured
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These are rare Indian fra-
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This is but one from our over 225 Ayurvedic products
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Tel: 800-261-7662 or 510-549-9986
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Send for free; full 64-page catalog.
Life Insurance in Malaysia
There is a lot to know about life insurance
before you can decide what is right for you.
If you would like to acquire life insurance
or be an agent for Great Eastern Life Assurance Co.
contact Dhasan Sivananda (Agency Developing Officer)
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Keen of mind and keen of sight,
free from sickness, free from sin, rich in children,
may we see you rise as a friend, 0 Sun, till a long life's end!
- Rig Veda
Classical Music of North and South India
Free catalog of award-winning CDs:
• Shankar and Zakir Hussain • VG Jog
• Dagar Brothers • GS Sachdev
• Trichy Sankaran • Imrat Khan
• A. Kanyakumari • Sultan Khan
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from around the world. Write to:
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Kindly contact: Chudikadevi Saravan, 03 331 9242
Rohini Kumar, 03 774 2946. Thanabalan, 04 4219326
45
, ..

Chapters on:
1. Dawn and Birth
2.
3.
Germination and Growth
Blossoming and Fullness
HIMAlAYAN ACADEMY PUBUCATIONS
107 KAHOlALELE ROAD
KAPAA. HI 96746-9304 USA
BOOKS YO U CAN TAKE, SERI O U SLY
SACRED
ANTHOLOGY
THE VEDIC EXPERIENCE
For centuries, the West has enjoyed beautiful trans-
lations of the Upanisnads, known as the Vedanta,
"end" or "culmination, " of the Vedas. But, alas, the
other three major parts of the world's oldest scrip-
ture have, as a rblle, been poorly rendered. We at
Himalayan Academy <could l'iIardly believe our eyes
wilen we stumbled on this thoughtful anthology of
the Samhitas, Brahmanas, Nal1yakas, Upanishads
ar::td other rnajGlri TIli.s Vedic epipf-iany tells
t tle story of the rhythms of nature, history and man.
Translation and commentary are the work of the bril-
liant renaissance thinker; Raimon Panikkar. It is the
fruit of twelve years of sadnana on the banks of the
Gan9,.a in Varanasi, liv.ing above a Siva temf1?le, be-
tween 1964 and 1976. Scholar-s GOnsider it perhaps
his most signifiGant C0l1tr:ibution to the literary welrld.
4. Fall and c>ec:ay
s.
6.
Moti/al Banarsidass, Delhi, 1994, smythe sewn, cloth bound,
5 112" x 8 1 IT, 1,000 pages. US$35.00 + slh $3.50 in US;
$7.00 outside US. Tel : 1-800-890-1008, ext. 238
Outside US: 1-808-822-3012, ext. 238; Fax: 1-808-822-4351
Advertisement sponsored by: Rainbow Windows, Deva Katir and family, Kapaa, Hawaii, USA; Guhan Sivalingam and family, Klang.
Selangor, Malaysia; Modern Textile Sari Shop. Renghen Family, Mahebourg. Mauritius; S. K. Moorghen and family. Beau Bassin.
Mauritius; Param Electric. Easvan Param and family, Concord. California. USA.
MUSIC
Rural. Ragas
Sound a
Revival
I .
New recordIngs give
village music spry spirit
OYFpL SIMPLICITY, QUIET SOLITUDE,
natural majesty. These impressions of In-
dia's idyllic countryside coalesce vibrant
In Kashmir: Bhajan Sopori (right) dreams of boating on Val Lake
and lasting memories in the minds of use of electronics is barely noticeable. But
those. who had their beginnings there. The this is no fault. The exquisite character ot. this
music springing forth from these lands is recording is the unique and perfect union of
plainly termed "folk m1JSic." But this phrase these four musicians and their distinctive in-
does not evoke the sophistication and depth struments- Ronu Majumdar, bamboo flute;
of the recordings now being made by Indias Vishwa Mohan Bhatt, Indian guitar; Tarun
youthful maestros. They are breathing life Bhattacharya, santoor and Sabir Khan, tabla.
into new sounds on compact disc, turning The crystalline recording conveys each nu-
village melodies into modern masterpieces. ance of the musieians, who "Seek to under-
tee." But his offer-
ing to' his guru,
Feel thE! Divine (71
minutes, Saisaa, Switzer-
land), has much to commend.Four-
For santoor (Indjan hammered dulcimer) stand and interpret the variou§ mood,s and
wizard Bh1;ljan Sopori, childhood memories rhythms of- nature in its kaleidoseopic glory."
fueled a digital "symphony." Kashmir (53 They have triumphed-naturally.
teen energetic instrumental bhajans burst
forth from this disc. Electro'nics are used pru-
and Western idioms only become ob-
trusive on a few tracks. This is a must-have for
Hindus, and a should-have for others. It is a
buoyant finale to our journey through wor-
shipful music made modern. . ..,.;
minutes, Multisync Trends, Inc., New Jersey, Admittedly, VS. Giretheren cannot com-
US$7.50) is by far the most successful contem- pete with the marketing and production of
porary Indian music recording to date. So- the companies just mentioned. He is, accord- .;11 ROSEDALE AVENUE, BRAMPTON, ONTAlIJO L6x 1"4
. d h al b d f him I b d CANADA · SAISAA, V.S. GIRETHEREN, OBERBURG STRASSE 39,
pori's santoor ri es UpOI) an et ere e 0 ing to . , 'Just a simp e Satya Sai Ba a evo- CH-34 °O BURGDORF, SWITZERLAND
traditional Indian' instnfments, _' ____________________________________ _
blended seamlessly with elec-
tronic synthesizers-and rhythm.
Othitrs who have attempted such
a synthesis have only adulterated
Melodious Mantras
vast storehouse of
yogic and tantric
knowledge. It con-
tains the mystical
essence of raja and
siddha yoga, and
the fundamental
doctrines of the 28
Saiva Siddhanta
Agamas. It has been
the music- neither being wholly
Indian, nor musical.
Sopori keeps the music sim-
ple, but also elegant and
getic. No doubt, his years of ex-
perienc,.e and extensive Indian
and Wes tern classical training
imbued his sensitivity. But So-
pori attributes the inspiration
elsewhere, "The present sym-
phony is a product of my mem-
ories of Kashmir. It corresponds
HE UPANISHADS ARE
often referred to as the
"Song of the Sel£" While
they have been chanted
countless ways, have you ever
actually heard them sung? We
have not. The Tirumant iram,
on the other hand, is an an-
cient Tamil scripture no less
profound and illuminative
than the Upanishads. Now,
to the seven colors of the rain- Collaborators: Tirumular (book
bow I saw over the silver moun-below) and GoVindarajan
tain range as a child. It express-
es the various moods of this
c
land, which are reflected in the ;
musical compositions of this a:
. paradise on earth." Kashmir
heralds what modern Indian in- :
strumental music may become,
Somewhat less venturesome
were the who created <
l1
Song of Nature (7l minutes, OMI ,
Music, Ontario, $15.00). Their
Tirumantiram (67
minutes, Indu Musik,
Chennai, [Madras 1 has
what the Upanishads i
do not-Seerkali
Govindarajan'S lyrical '--..,.....,_--''-----'
digital rendering. It's
not rap-it's rhapsodic.
This Tirumantiram is a rere-
lease of a previous analog
recording sung by the late
Govindarajan and accompa-
nied by the archetypal Tamil
devotional orchestra. The
quality of the recording and
mix are not up to modern
standards, but singer and po-
etic sacred verses prevail.
The Tirumantiram, "Holy
Incantation," is the Nandi-
natha Sampradayas oldest
Tamil scripture, written ca
200 BCE by Rishi Tirumular. It
is the earliest Tirumurai, and a
published in many books, but
this CD is the only place we
know offor you to hear it. But
beware, its all in Tamil!
The second track is another
treasure from the Tirumurai,
slightly more tuneful than the
Tirumantiram. It is Saint Sam-
bandar's Kolarupathikam,
Tamil songs on the effects of
planets, stars, disease and other
seeming adversities. Each
verse ends with, 'i\ll bring
good luck to Siva's devotees!"
INDU ELECTRONICS, MADRAS; PRINCE'S
MUSI C SERV1CE; SIN'GAPORE AND p&c
SH.AtlKAR AND CO. , 231 NORTHBOLT ROAD,
SOUTH HARROW, ENGLAND.
FEBRUARY, 19 97 H I'ND U I S M TODAY 47
/
"One God, One World" will be
<chiseled in many languages into
the white granite <ceiling of Ifaivan
Temple, Americas first all-stone
traditional Siva temple. In 1991
a small village was created
in India, for 1 GO
c::raftsmen and their families who
are hand-carving the Ira ivan temple
to be shipped to the Garden Island
of Kauai. Call or visit our web
site for more details.
1-808-639-8886
http://www.Hindl!'JismT0day.
Kauai.hi.us/aslrlrarn/lraivan.htrnl
"ONE GOD,
ONE WORLD"
SAN MARGA IRAIVAN TEMPLE
107 KAHOLALELE ROAD,
KAPAA, f,il 96746-9304 USA
A TEMPLE BUILT TO LAST 1,000 YEARS
LIFES' TYLES
Norm in the Dorm
...
Students shun meat at elite Americ,an college
bastion: ,Stu4ents pay $21, 000 per year.to attend the 40-acre liberal arts college
HILE VEGETARIANISM IS NO LONG-
er an aberration in America, at
Sarah Lawrence College in Bronx-
ville, New YOFk, it's actual!!' become
the norm. Meatless meals have been offered
for almost 25 year:s, and college officials es-
timate that c}.ITrently 60 percent of hs more '
than 1,300 students are vegetarian.
How did Sarqh Lawrence find itself on
the cutting edge of the US vegetarian move-
ment? "Our students are incredibly aware of
the new information comil)g out, and they
were reading that it's healfhier to eat fess
meat," answered Micheal Rengers, food ser-
vice administrator. "The cotlege tends to
draw independent-minded _ students who
.know what they want.and how ta.:ask for it."
Rengers himself has been a vegan, a veg-
etarian wbo eschews even dairy products,
for six years. After kicking the smoking
habit, he started to put on weight, and was
encouraged by the fact that vegans he met
were never overweight. He also figured that
the best way to understand the studeFlts'
needs was to try their diet. "I felt terrific," he
said, "and fhey loved
According t{) Ray Mulligan, whose compa-
ny provides meals at Lawrence and nearby
Bard College, "nightsh,ade vegans" at Bard
are now asking for food offerings wlthout
root vegetables, such as and potatoes.
Student Gregory Marin was originally
motivated by environmental qoncerns when
he eliminated meat from his diet !hree years
ago. "I was reading about the inefficiency
and waste of using meat over plant products.
When I became a vegan, it was because of
a growing concern for animals." Marin now
eschews wearing leather as welL •
,'Tve been a vegetarian all my life, except
for four years," said Ivy Quinn, a
student. "I want to experience everyt.hing in
life," joked Quinn, in explaining her stint as
a meat-eater. "I wanted to see what it was
like on the other side, but it wasn't any
and I didn't feel good!" . -
While the depth of vegetarian culture at'
Sarah Lawrence (70 percent girls) may be
unusual, it is indicative of a larger shift in at-
titudes toward food that has occurred in the
last 25 years on American campuses. Re-
cently, Duke University and the University
of California at Berkeley began serving
more vegetarian dishes in response to in-
creasing student and faculty demands . ..
By La Bosco, New York
- --- - - ----
ART
Hussain Offers
An Apology "
Furor over
..
.:
I
hand smoke" has led to smoking
bans in public .places, offices
and factories. FUrther. regula-
tion could raise the price of cig-
arettes and cut their availability.
. . and no one seemed to But when
I
DREW IT TWENTY YEARS A'CO,
" o
There are more prqbleins. In
1996 tobac€o giant Brown and
Williamson became the first to
lose in a smoking-death case
and was ordered to pay
$750,000 in damages to the sur-
viXi'ng spouse. Hundreds more
law.suits are pending. Fourteen
states are suing tobacco compa-
nies to recover billions.of dollars "
spent treating ailing smokers in
public-health'Programs.
ichar magazine in Bhopal recently
published it in an article entitled, "Is
this man a painter or a butCher?" Maqbool
Fida Hussain found himself in the center of
a storm. At issue was his sensuous nude
drawing of Goddess Saraswati in which She
is seated-near a lotus and peacock and with
a vina discreetly placed across Her lap. Irate
Hindus demanded an apology, and Bajrang
Dal cadres trashed Hussain's exhibit in
Ahmedabad, destroyirlg 16 works. A few
years ago Hussain, a Muslim, came under
fire for other nude paintings of Goddesses
and of the Mahabharata's Draupadi.
Press reports are contradictory as to Hus-
sain'slreaction. On the one hand, India Mail
. (UK) said the issued a publi'G apology,
- "If any of lJlY works has hurt the sentiments
of some, which is not at all deliberate or in-
tentional, I feel sorry and apologize." The
same week India Today quptes him mock-
ing, "Were these people asleep for 20 years?
This kind of thing is dangerous. Tpey are
stupid. I can laugh at ·{hem. The matter
should go to the high court to establish what
is art"and w4at is obscenity. My countrymen
don't understaFld their own culture."
The Sliiv Sena, - who
hold political sway in
Mumbai, are consideF-
ing legal action. "If
Salman Rushdie can be
censored for Satanic
Verses [which was
banned in India], the
majority community, too
.can seek action against
Mr. Hussain," said a par-
ty spokesperson. Iqbal
:. Masud, writing in the
Tirnes of India, strongly
: defended the banning of
Satanic Verses, over ,
which were dead-
ly riots ir(lndia. Critical
Hussain, age 81 of Hussain, M wrote, "I
.j find the erotic depiction
of Saraswati distasteful and the argument of
its defenders-that Hindus been sensu-
ous throughout history-greatly flawed.
Hussain has thrived on sensational-
ism to remain in the public ey.e, which is
tasteless and dangemus." . ..
f-o
l(

"
" z
____ ____ __ __ __ ____
New craze: They are a poor man's smoke in India Sensing a losing fight', tobacco
companies have turned to the
TRENDS East. According to the World
Beedies, a, New.
American Fad
Health Organization, smoking in
developed nations fell 10% from
1970 to 1994, while in developing
nations it rose 67%. One factory
in England is in'&easing its ca-
pacity from 11 billion cigarettes
a year to 48 billion (50% ofIn-
dia's total production). Almost
all are destined for the Far East,
which the Wall Street Journal
called "the fastest growing and
most lucrative tobacco' market."
But smoking overall decliries
in fac..e of serious' health risks
W
HEN THE MARLBORO MAN MOVED
to India: who would have guessed
that "Ganesha Beedies" would' in-
vade America in revenge? Strange but
true, those most low-caste of cigarettes are
the latest American college fad. A beedi, at
half the diameter of American cigarettes, is
. made of Indian tobacco hand-rolled in
ebony leaves. They sell for $2.50 to $3.00 for
a pack of twen;y (about a dollar of which is
taxes). That's pricey for a product that sells
for one rupee.-three US cents-in India,
but is in line with US-brand cigarette prices.
What:s the appeal? Suresh Ralap'ati, an
NRI ana tobacco scientist of the US Bureau
of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (the 'f\TF,"
which regulates cigarettes), ventured, "Per-
haps the fact that they look like joints [illegal
'marijuana cigarettes] interests the young
people." There's also the nicotine. A'ccording
to Time magazine, which reported on the
fad in its October issue, Indian tobacco has
8 percent nfcotine, compared to one or two
percent in American cigarettes. The nico-
-tine gives beedies quite a punch, but they
are not itlegal under US standards.
That may change shortly, for there is a
strong push on to have nicotine declared an
addictive drug. Such a declaration would
move over cigarettes trom the
ATF to' the Food and Drug Administration
and put nicotine in the same category as
heroin and cocrune. Concern about "second-
Just as President Clinton aFl-
nounced severe restrictions on tobacco ad-
vertising (especially protecting minors), In-
dian tobacco firms were fighting Delhi city's
anti-smoking law, which would be the first
in India to ban smoking in public places and
prohibit advertising. India's tobaq:o compa-
nies respOli.ded by of sci-
entific evidence" about the hazards of smok-
ing. But all legal battles have proven tobacco
companies have known for years of smok-
ings great health risks, and suppressed the
information in their quest for
Tobacco target: Marketing is now focused on
peoples, including tribals, outside the West
F E,B R UAR Y , 1997 Hl'NDUISM TODAY 49
i
MINISTER'S MESSAGE
Religion is not a path to Godhead or to
Godhood, but only a code of conduct with-

rrfuth Preva i Is
out which there would nothing but
chaos in society. Beliefs are not paths. The
Kingdom of God is a pathless land, a land
of no paths! But today everyone wants to
categorize everything: Hindu, Moslem,
Christian, Buddhist, Atheist, Taoist, etc.
Like pigeons living in little holes, people
box themselves into a mental mold and
The Hindu way adheres to the high priI?-ciples
of yoga, tolerance, nonviolence· and truth
never realize their essence. They never
grasp the substance, because they are so
preoccupied with the shadow.
There is no such thing as a Jewish soul, a
Muslim soul, a Christian soul or a Hindu
soul. "fhere is no such 'thing as a male soul
BY SRI LA SRI SWAMI ' BUA MAHARAJ
..Qr a female souL There is no such thing as· a
white-skinned soul or black-skinned soul.
Soul fs not qualified by the qualities of the I
body and mind. The soul is free from the
gunas, the qualities and characteristics ,of
prakriti (primary matter). The properties
W
HAT IS HINDUISM AND WHO IS A HINDU? HINDUISM
is not a hodgepodge of different beliefs and practices
as some believe. Hinduism extols the five cardinal
principles of nonviolence, truthfulness,
ness, continence and nonpossessiveness. It proclaims that one
be very selective about the food one eats, the thoughts one
holds, the actions one does and the company one keeps. Any-
one and everyone can be a Hindu, bUll not everyone is. True
liberalism, supreme magnanimity and unstinting forgiveness
are evidenced only in Hinduism, not in any other religion in
the world. It does not accept those practices which are self-
ish, morally degrading, violent and hurtfuL Hinduism is a
beautiful way of and loving God. A true Hindu does
not take God's name in vain. He practices what he preaches. Hin-
duism is the religion of humanity. Those who embrace,Hinduism
must embrace humanity, and those who embrace hurrpmity must
be humane. Inhumanity in any form is anti-Hindu. One who up-
hGllds these humanistic values is a Hindu.
Viveka, the power of discerhment or discrimination, is an essen-
tial practice of Hinduism. Hinduism does not embrace all beliefs
and practices. It only -embraces those beliefs and practices that are
in harmony with truth and righteousness, that are conducive to
well-being. It does illlt embrace practices harmful to the body,
mind and spirit. Hinduism universality. It does not em-
brace dogma and ignorance, Hinduism is unique. It is not a man-
religion. Really, it is not a religion at all, though it
reli!Qous practices and beli'efs. It is an eternal way of life, a way of
living in eternity, that is why it is called the Sanatana Dharma.,
One cannot live in eternity if one is engrossed in man-made
images and unreality. When a human Qves in the figments of
his imagination, he is unable to grasp the meaning of this life and
does not know how to face death. Few people really live a whole
life. Most are mortally wounded by their own ego, and they never
live to realize the truth. Most people only live to realize the dreams
of'their ego, and that is why they live, and die in helL
When one is defrauded by miQd or ego, he will not hesitate to
defraud others. Unfortunately, this is the condition of many of
ministers, gurus, swamis and sannyasins. Few have the -
eyes to see or the .ears to hear. They are too busy looking outside
themselves for recognition and. only want to listen to those who
praise them. Saiutly persons speaking on' spirituality, God and
rehgion often talk about the patllless traveled or not traveled at
all. But the way of the Hindu is to look within, recognize God, the
Parabrahman: the Absolute, shIning in his own heart. He
welcomes criticism, realizing he can learn much from the observa-
tions of others.
50 HINDUISM TODA-Y 1997
of the mind and body do not resemble the
nature of the Annan (soul). People imagine
that they belong to a particular religious
sect or they become fundamentalist Hin-
dus, Muslims, Jews' or Christians. They
neglect the fundamental practices of being
a good human being: forgiveness, compas-
sion, mercy, high moral character, vegetari-
anism, wisdom, seryice and devotion.
To be a Hindu, really, means to be your-
self This is the crux of the problem. We do not really understand
ourselves, and that is why there is so much conflict and suffering
in the world. Hinduism teaches us about our real nature, our dhar-
ma. HinduiSm embodies all those p,actices, precepts and tradi-
tions that help us understand our real nature and be ourselves.
And, so, the essence Of Hinduism is revealed in yoga. In fact, the
aim of all religious diSciplines is yoga or union, of the self with the
Supreme Self or you can say, it is the total understanding of one's
self and being one's Self When we live in that Ab'solute Being, we
realize our own eternity and are liberated from an selfish states.
In the Gita, Lord Krishna advises Arjuna, "Be a yogi." He does
not say be a Saivite or be a Vaishnavite. Let us practice the quali-
ties of all great souls and not just eulogize them. Instead of making
little Krishna dolls, let us make our lives worthy of His Presence in
our hearfs by imbibing His ways in our actions. Let us follow the
ways of the Wise and not the ways of th.e fools. This is the message
of the Hindu religion, the message of true faitkJ., the message of }Vis-
dom. Those who can unqerstand will change for the better. If we
have changed for-the better, then we will leave the world a little .
better than we found it. This is the precept and concept ang es-
sence of the Hindu religion. God save the world! Peace be unto you!!
Hail Hinduism!!! Hurrah, ye Hindu world!!!! Om shanti!!!!! '.
SRI LA SRI SWAMI BUA MAHARAJ, 107, is founder and head of the
Indo-American Yoga-Vedanta SOCiety, New York, USA. In Novem-
ber he taught Sanatana Dharma in BraZil, South America.
L
ike an exceptional diamond,
spiritual truths are often at their
best in a simple, elegant setting.
This rare gem of a book with
childrens' stories for adults is
a must for every Hindu home.
Written with gentle warmth, humor
and wisdom, Enlightening Tales as
Told by Sri Swami Satchidananda
presents 47 short fables, each with a
deep inner truth and richly
illustrated. Available from
Himalayan Academy Publications.
Enlightening Tales
As Told by Sri Swami Satchidananda
Published by Integral Yoga Publications
Available through Himalayan Academy Publications
107 Kaholalele Road, Kapaa, HI 96746-9304 USA Sri Swa:mi Satchidananda
118 pages, PlJlMrback, 1S full-cDIDr, full-/IBIB flldput IIluBtratIDns. ISBII 6-981040-U-9. Price -'fR.9S OncludllB UN).




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Ad sponsored by: Nathan Palani family. Hawaii, USA; Shyamadeva Dandapani family. Anchorage, Alaska, USA; San Diego Yoga Teachers
Association, Damara Shanmugan, San Diego, California, USA; Raj EXports. Lakshmanan Nellalappan and family, Madras, Tamil Nadu, India.
,
,
RECONCILIATION
Blessings
". .
Muslim join minority
Hindus in Janmashtami celebrations,
,.
BASHUDEB DHAR, BANGLADESH
I
THE AUGUST 4 INAUGURATION OF
Chittagong's five-day Janmashtami
celebrations, Prime Min-
ister Sheikh Hasina made a clarion
call to all, irrespective of religious and polit-
ical identity, to stand against injustice and
reject the enemies of humanity and democ-
racy/ It was' a welcome . gesture for the
eleven-million-strong Hindu community
wlich has seen all too much injustice,
speaker of parliament, said such
harmony was essential for eco-
nomic development.
The day of Janmashtami is a
national public holiday, second
in importance only to the Mus-
lim's Maharram festival. News-
papers publislied editorials,
while radio and television aired
special programs, The day's
events included Krishna aba-
han, puja, recitation from the
Gita, bhog, arati, yajna, discus-
sions and cultural functions.
At the same time, in the nation's capital of
Dhaka, minister fot- religious affairs Mou-
lana Mohammad Nurul Islam inaugurated
celebrations at the historic Dhakeswari
Temple, whose Goddess is ,egarded as the
city's presiding DeiFy. The Janmashtami
pt ocession, honoring the birthday of Lord
Krishna, then paraded into the, streets with
enthusil;istic devotees of all ages dancing and
singing religious songs, People streamed out
onto streets and balconies to glimpse the
colorful procession, with, its portraits of Kr-
ishna and displays of His activities.
The procession from Dha-
keswari dates back to 1902, It
was . stopped in 1948 due to
widespread communal distur-
bances. The solid gold idoJ of
the Goddess was looted in what
was thEm East Pakistan, The
procession resumed in 1989.
Celebrations: Prime Minister at Janmashtami (top);
rebuilt Dhakeswari Temple seroes minority Hindus' "
On the second da!, of celebr;ations, the
state minister tor land, Rashed Mosharraf,
appealed to the devotees, "We have to create
ll:/ congellial atmosphere where minorities
would be assured of equal rights and privi-
leges," Humayun Rashid- Chowdhury, the
In October 1990 the temple
complex was again attacked by communal
forces, They . destroyed the shrines, plun-
dered the properties and set fire to the \
Deities, This was prior to the violent after-
math of Ayodhya in December, 1992, when
th'ousands of Hindu temples in Bangladesh
were damaged or destroyed. Initial govern-
ment promises to rebuild Dhakeswari went
unfulfilled, so last year devotees personally
saw to the temple's repair and establish-
ment of a new Deity. Buddhists, Christians
and Hindus alike have called for a declara-
tion of bhakeswari as national
temple. wJ
SERVING
Bangalore's Blind School
the children breakfast From
then on everyone gradually
learned to trust and accept us,
teachers simply would not
believe the daily responsibili-
ties of their Indian counter-
parts, Neesha spent many
hours sitting on the steps of
the school combing and braid-
ing the girls' hair, Not speak-
ing Kannada, there were
awkward moments at first, but
we found a common language
singing Sanskrit bhajanas.
FIRS'F VISITED SRI SRI SRI
Balagangadharanatha -
swami's sohool for the blind
on my maiden trip to India
in 1993, I was so taken by the
beautiful, bright faces of the
children that I made an inner
cO)llIIlitment to return some-
day and stay with them for
awhile, I returned in January,
1996, accompanied. by 15-year-
ala Neesha Alahan from
Hawaii, USA, ready to help in
any way we could, Apparently
there had n(i)t been many vol-
unteers at the school before,
and certainly none from
(
Ameriea. It was clear from the
start the teaohers and aunties
were already doing a
The days were long, and we
learned how to serve 500
meals a day without the bene-
fit of refrigeration, American
fine job of taking care Sharing: Nees'ha with new friends
of the children.
At '(!lre-d.awn
prayers they sat us up
i.J::l front of the chil-
dren. Uncomfortable,
we moved our mats to
the back and sat with
the children, wanting
only to be a part of
them, not treated like
special visitors. This
broke the ice, and
they let us help serve
52 HiNDUISM TODAY FE' BRUARY, 1997
Two weeks later we left the
blind school with tears and
promises made. I kept one of
those promises when I
returned to San Diego and
shipped over 800 textbooks in
English Braille to India. I was
given a Brailler typewriter,
and each month I send a les-
son on Hinduism.
DAMARA SHANMUGAN, San Diego

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53
/
HEALTH
Ayurveda
on Line
nISHI PAL CHAUHAN,
Nounder ofJiva insti-
tute of Vedic Arts, was-
not content with just
creating a hi-tech school
in Faridabad dedicated
to Indian culture and
science. He wanted the
school to go global.
The cyberspace result
is the JIV A worldwide
web site at http://www
.jiva.org. This on-line
school is complete with
a unique library of rare
resources on unpub-
lished scripture, Vedic
math, vastu shastra,
astronomy, music and
law. But by far the most
developed part of JIVA
CYBERTIPS
Bombs,
Away!
C
OMPUTER BOMBS
aren't delivered by
terrorists, and although
they happen to your
computer, you are more
likely to blow up as a re-
is their Ayurveda page,
maintained by Rishi
Pal's brother, Ayurveda-
charya Dr. Partap S.
Chauhan at http://
www.Ayurvedic.org.
Here you can take a
quiz to determine your
Ayurvedic constitution,
learn the causes and
cures for common ail-
ments, ask the good
doctor for some free
consultation and even
drop by an online phar-
macy to purchase need-
ed remedies. If healing
is your thing, Dr.
Chauhan's site includes
the Ayurvedic College
Online with a popular
four-week correspon-
dence course of Web
lectures, readings, activ-
ities, personal e-mail
correspondence and
internet discussions.
suit than the computer
is. Bombs-computer
lockups requiring
restarting the ma-
chine-occur for
all sorts of rea-
sons, few of
which can be
explained by
anyone. Avoid-
ing them completely is a
hopeless task, but here
Dancers and deepa (below) from KalashKala disks
CLIP ART
Indian Images
Q
UALITY INDIAN CLIP ART IS SCARCE,
so these KalashKala graphics can
make a welcome addition to your
newsletters, invitations or
home pages. The collection of :;
over 100 images in different cate-
gories-such as festivals or wed-
dings-is the creation of Prium
Graphics and artist Priti Jain. The
images (grayscale at 300dpi and
color at lOOdpi) come on floppy disks for PC or
. Mac at a cheap $29.99. They can be used as is or
manipulated in a graphics program. Write: Pri-
um Graphics, 110 Standish Road, Needham,
Massachusetts 02192 USA.
I
are a few tips. 1) Keep
your computer system
lean, devoid of any
extraneous exten-
sions, control pan-
els, screen savers,
etc. 2) Keep the
number of open pro-
grams to a minimum to
avoid memory fragmen-
tation. 3) Save often. You
won't lose your work
when you inevitably do
bomb, and programs will
run better. 4) Exercise
caution during system or
program installation by
opening "Read Me" flies
that come with the new
software. They warn of
potential conflicts and
problems. 5) Backup!
Daily, as necessary, and
weekly for sure.
MEDITATION
Inner
Silence
S
OOTHING SITAR
sounds surround Vas-
anthi Bhat's soft voice as
she guides you gently
through a step-by-step
pFocess of learning how
to breathe, chant, relax,
meditate and heal
through visualization on
her new audio compact
disc, "Meditation For All
Walks of Life." She ad-
dresses the main obsta-
cle to meditation-nega-
tive thoughts and
emotions which arise in
the mind and often
cause people to give up.
She offers profitable
words on how to deal
with such thoughts
stored in the subcon-
scious mind. Sixty min-
utes with Vasanthi will
calm even the most
stressed-out person.
Write: Vasantha Yoga,
1196 Lynbrook Way, San
Jose, California 95129
USA. Web: http:// www.
indolinkcomlGlobali
vsnt Yoga.html
Meditation made easy
If the mind becomes as -firmly established in Brahman as it is
usually attached tQ the sense Qbjects, whQ, then, will not be
released frQm
UPANISHAD 6.34

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