Canadian Hindu link by yaosaigeng


									                                                              SPRING SPECIAL

                                      Hindu link
                               A Free Qu3rterly Journal Dedicated to educating the New Generation of Canadian Hindus

                               Volume 3 Issue 2                  ISSN # 1920-9339               Apr/May/June. 2011



FromEditor’s Desk         2

Significance of Ram-      3

Vishu - Vaisakhi Festi-   5
val of South

Death, Suicide and        6

Broad View on             8
Hindu Religion

Marriage is Divine        9

Hindus Promote Envi-      10
ronment Protection

Tamil Bhagwath Gita       12

Hindu Contribution to     13

The Law of Karma          16
Applies to All

The Youth Corner          17

Yama - Basic Human        19
Values in Hinduism

Arya Samaj Contribu-      20
tion to Hindu Society                                       This Issue is Sponsored By:
                                                    Ace Financial Group, Floradale Medical Pharmacy
Wealth - A Balanced       22          Mrs. Seema Makhija[Accounting Services] Dr. Naresh Sharma[Family Dentist]
Outlook                                    Heartlake Florist & Gifts, B. R. Auto Sales, Apollo Convention Centre
                                     Mr. Dave Bhatia[Improbus Realty Corp.] Mr. Anil Sharma[Akal Financial Group]
Communication Gap         26          India Sajawat & Puja Hut, Lisa Samlal [Interior Decorator & Graphic Designer]
                                      Mr. Vishva & Mrs. Kamlesh Sharma, Bukhara Grill, Liberal Party - Mississauga
Q & A on Hinduism         24          Avenue Optical, Mr. Pramod Anand[Homelife Woodbine], Mrs. Anjali Sharma
                                   Joshi Law Office, Ms. Nadeeka[Right At Home Realty], Veera Kali Matha Astrologer
Reader’s Feedback         27                 Routes - Car & Truck Rentals, Mrs. Anjali Sharma [Rodney, ON]
PAGE    2

                                                   From the Editor’s Desk
               Inter-Caste Marriages Promote Integration
                                             Re-Emergence of Varna Sysytem
                 The Varna system is a social    society in which they have to live and     gle with a great variety of sub-
       classification of Hindu society based     work. Keeping our children in the          cultures and different castes, even
       on a person‘s occupation, instead of      cocoon of our own culture would            within the Hindu diasporas, inter-
       birth. For example, if a person born      only stunt their growth and social         caste marriages, mostly love mar-
       in a Shudra (low caste) family be-        development. They would become             riages, are inevitable. In fact, such
       comes a learned scholar, under the        misfits, unable to deal with the main-     marriages are rapidly increasing. Ac-
       Varna system he will be called a          stream society effectively. Even if        cording to Dr. Ravi Srivastava, vol-
       Brahmin by virtue of his occupation.      they socialized within the Canadian        unteer priest for Mississauga Arya
       Under the caste system currently          Hindu community, as many parents           Smaj, he has performed over 400
       practiced, he would still be consid-      pressure their young children to do        wedding ceremonies in the US and
       ered a Shudra. For centuries, Hindu       so, they would still be exposed to         Canada during the last ten years, of
       reformers have been unsuccessfully        Hindus youths who may belong to            which 60% were inter-caste couples.
       trying to release Hindus society from     families of different castes, linguistic   This is a very positive development
       the shackles of the rigid, hereditary     groups and sub-cultures from India.        for fostering unity and integration in
       caste system, a distorted version of      Moreover, they would also meet with        our diverse community. Our new
       the Varna system of the Vedic pe-         Hindu youths from Guyana, Trinidad,        generation is doing, perhaps unknow-
       riod.                                     Kenya, South Africa and other coun-        ingly, something that their ancestors
                                                 tries.                                     and reformist leaders in India could
                 Historically, the caste sys-                                               not achieve.
       tem helped Hindus retain their cul-                 Many parents try to help
       ture during the period of foreign         their young children find a life part-               As a result of an increasing
       domination of India. It did then make     ner within their own caste and lin-        number of inter-caste love marriages,
       sense to marry within one‘s own           guistic group. Even if their children      we are now witnessing a new begin-
       caste, as each marriage partner was       raise no objection, the pool of legible    ning and re-emergence of the Varna
       familiar with the occupation, cus-        suitors within their own caste & lin-      System that our ancestors followed
       toms, traditions and social laws of the   guistic group may be very small.           during the ancient Vedic period. We
       caste to which they both belonged.        Moreover, when other factors like          observe that young Hindu parents,
       Since they lived under the joint fam-     age, education and family back-            who are professionals, socialize with
       ily system, it would be easy for a girl   ground etc. come into play, the            other professionals. Young Hindu
       to assimilate in her husband‘s joint      choice may become even more lim-           business people tend to mingle more
       family. The caste sub-culture re-         ited. Eventually, inter-caste marriage     with young parents who are in some
       mained untouched by the social and        is the only logical option that makes      sort of business. The same trend is
       political turmoil. Each caste had its     sense.                                     also emerging in the young intellec-
       own social laws, customs and even a                                                  tual community. Naturally, birds of
       deity. In Canada and urban India,                   Contrary to common belief,       feather flock together. We may soon
       sons and daughters of all castes, in-     inter-caste marriages are neither a        see the formation of four occupation-
       cluding Shudras, are no longer fol-       modern system nor due to Western           based social groups- intellectuals,
       lowing their occupations. They are        influence. Ancient Indian history          professionals, businessmen and oth-
       entering all types of fields- medicine,   cites many examples of inter-caste         ers [blue collar workers]. It may also
       administration, businesses, account-      and inter-racial marriages, even           spawn a hybrid Hindu culture. We
       ing and engineering etc. Therefore,       among three so called high castes and      may call this new development the re
       practicing the hereditary caste system    royal families. Aryan settlers married     -establishing of four Varnas- Brah-
       makes absolutely no sense.                very often girls from Dravidian & pre      mins, Kshatriyas, Vaishyas and blue
                                                 -Dravidian people. Thus, there was a       collar workers. Hopefully, it will not
                 We live in a new era and a      fusion of two cultures. In his recent      again degenerate into the rigid he-
       country where Hindus are a very tiny      work Hindu inter-caste marriages:          reditary caste system practiced in the
       minority. Our children are exposed to     Ancient and modern [1999], histo-          past.
       a culture with a different set of val-    rian Haripada Chakravorty offers
       ues, in their daily lives. This poses a   countless examples of love mar-                     We would like to hear the
       tough challenge for Hindu parents in      riages, inter-caste and inter-racial       views of our readers on this impor-
       transmitting their spiritual and cul-     nuptial unions during the Vedic and        tant social issue of our community.
       tural values to their children. We        post-Vedic period.                         We will publish all viewpoints and
       cannot protect our children by keep-                                                 opinions in our next issue.
       ing them insulated from mainstream                 When our youths intermin-                  By : Ajit Adhopia
VOLUME       3,   ISSUE    2                                                                                       PAGE    3

                          Significance of Ramnavami
                                        By : V. N. Gopalakrishnan (Mumbai)

          The festival of Ramnvami      this year Ram Navami is celebrated       relationships. Rama Rajya (the reign
 dedicated to Lord Rama is celebrated   on April 12th.                           of Lord Rama) is the ideal rule of a
 throughout the country with enthusi-                                            king or the one in power. Mahatma
 asm. Lord Rama is one of the ten                 According to legend, Lord      Gandhi aspired for Rama Rajya as it
 avatars (incarnations) of Lord         Rama was born at noon and is the         is synonymous with a period of peace
 Vishnu, and one of the two most        epitome of perfection, the Uttama        and prosperity.
 popular, along with Lord Krishna.      Purusha, fulfilling all his duties to-
 Consequently, Rama Navami is           wards both family and his people. In              Rama Navratras, the nine-
 widely celebrated, though not on the   the words of Swami Vivekananda,          day worship dedicated to Lord Ram,
 scale of festivals like Diwali or      Lord Rama was ‗the ideal son, the        starts on Chaitra Shukla Prathami
 Dussehra. It was on the ninth day of   ideal husband, the ideal father and      and ends on Chaitra Shukla Navami.
 Chaitra month of the Hindu lunar       above all the ideal king.‘ Lord Rama     Hence Rama Navami or Rama
 calendar, Lord Rama was born and       as a personality grew into perfection    Jayanti marks the culmination of
 hence Hindus the world over cele-      as he faced the turmoil of life. His     Rama Navratri. Rama Navami is a
 brate this festival by praying and     life and the life of his wife Sitadevi   grand event in the Sri Ram Temple in
 chanting his name. As per the Gre-     have become the role models for          Ayodhya in Uttar Pradesh, Sri Sita
 gorian calendar, Chaitra or Ugadi      married couples. By adhering to the      Ramachandra Swamy Temple at
 corresponds to the month of March-     ideals of Lord Rama and Sitadevi,        Bhadrachalam in Andhra Pradesh,
 April. Rama Navami falls on the        one can get guidance as to the right     and Rameshwaram Temple in Tamil
 ninth day of the Shukla Paksha, or     and wrong of a situation when one is     Nadu. Devotees narrate and listen to
 bright phase of the moon, and hence    confronted with a dilemma in human       the legends of Lord Rama chant his

                                                                                                      Continues on page 4…….
PAGE   4

           (Continued from page 3)

       name, recite shlokas and mantras            Ramayana and Ramacharit Manas              Sun and its radiance in many lan-
       associated with him and dance to the        are narrated in the temples.               guages including Sanskrit.
       tunes of bhajans on the occasion.
                                                               Lord Rama was the first of               (The author is a freelance
                 Though Rama Navami is             the four sons of King Dasharatha of        journalist, Columnist and social
       celebrated in a grand manner every-         Ayodhya. When it was time for Lord         activist. He can be contacted on
       where in the country, the festival at       Rama to be made crown prince, his ).
       Ayodhya, the birth place of Lord            stepmother, Kaikeyi, got Dasharatha
       Rama is celebrated with great zeal          to exile him to the forest for 14 years.
       and enthusiasm. During Rama                 His wife Sitadevi and his brother
       Navami, people of Ayodhya take out          Laxman also accompanied him. In
       a Rath Yatra (chariot procession) in        the forest, Sitadevi was kidnapped by
       order to commemorate the existence          Ravana, the demon king of Lanka.               HAPPY VAISAKHI
       of the almighty on earth. The Rath          Lord Rama, together with Hanuman
                                                                                                   & RAMNAVAMI
       Yatra consists of a merrily decorated       and the monkey brigade, built a
       chariot with four persons dressed up        bridge to Lanka, killed Ravana, and            TO OUR READERS,
       as Lord Rama, Laxman, Sitadevi and          brought Sitadevi back. It is believed            VOLUNTEERS
       Hanuman. The chariot is accompa-            that listening to the story of Lord             AND SPONSORS.
       nied by thousands of Ram devotees.          Rama         cleanses      the     soul
       They move with the procession               and chanting his name eases the
       throughout the city and chant the           pains of life and leads one to libera-         Ajit Adhopia, Editor
       name of Lord Ram. The effigy of the         tion (Moksha).                     
       ten-headed Ravana passes through
       the town, wearing an unusual crown                                                            905-273-9563
                                                            Rama Navami appears to be
       and exaggerated moustache. But once         just a festival commemorating the
       Ravana reaches the open ground, he          reign of a king who was later deified.
       is suddenly deserted because the no-        But even behind present day tradi-
       ble Lord Rama has already made his          tions, there are clues which unmis-
       appearance. The effigy of Ravana,           takably point to the origin of Rama
       filled to bursting with firecrackers, is    Navami as lying beyond the Rama-
       set alight, and explodes into a thou-       yana story. Since Lord Rama is also
       sand bits amid loud cheers from the         one of the most sung about deities in
       crowd and shouts of Jai Shri Ram.           Indian classical music and literature,
       This ritual is an important part of the     week-long musical programmes are
       Rama Navami celebrations.                   organized during Rama Navami.
                 Though Rama Navami is a
       major festival for Vaishnavites, it is               On Rama Navami, the cele-
       widely celebrated by worshippers of         brations begin with a prayer to the
       Lord Shiva as well. It is considered        Sun early in the morning. Lord
       auspicious to undertake a fast on the       Rama's dynasty is said to have de-
       day in the name of Lord Rama. Many          scended from the Sun which is called
       devotees fast for nine days, from           the Sun dynasty (Raghukula or
       Ugadi to Rama Navami. The objec-            Raghuvamsa). Raghu means Sun and
       tive of the fast is to seek perfection as   Lord Rama is also known as Raghu-
       a human being. One significant ele-         natha or Raghupati. The names begin
       ment of the celebration is the Rama-        with the prefix Raghu is suggestive
       yana parayana (recitation of Rama-          of the link with Sun worship. The
       yana) and a discourse on the Rama-          hour chosen for the observance of the
       yana. Professional story-tellers enli-      Lord Rama‘s birth is when the Sun is
       ven the festival by weaving in con-         at its maximum brilliance. In some
       temporary anecdotes to attract mas-         Hindu sects, prayers on Rama
       sive crowds. A special prayer is ar-        Navami day start with an invocation
       ranged for the midday, when Lord            to the Sun and not Lord Rama. The
       Rama is supposed to have been born.         syllable Ra is used to describe the
       Throughout the day, couplets of
VOLUME        3,   ISSUE      2                                                                                            PAGE   5

       Vishu - The Vaisakhi festival
                 of South
                      By : V. N. Gopalakrishnan (Mumbai)

           Vishu is the harvest festival    ramam. The highlight of the festival
 of Kerala observed on the first day of     is Vishu Kani, Vishu Kaineettam and
 the Medam month (April-May) of the         Vishubhalam. The Vishu celebration
 Malayalam almanac. Vishu festival is       commences with the Vishu Kani, the
 considered as the astrological New         first auspicious thing that people see
 Year day of Keralites whereas the          on the day which takes place during
 official Malayalam New Year                the Brahma Muhurta. Vishu Kani is
 (Kollavarsham) starts in Chingam           an auspicious sight which is usually
 (August-September). Though 1st of          prepared on the previous night. This
 Madam is marked on April 14, this          include Unakkalari (raw rice), Kaniv-
 year Vishu is being celebrated on          ellari (cucumber), Vettila (betel
 April 15. The day marks the sun's          leaves), Pazhukkapakku (ripe are-
 transits to the first zodiac-Mesha         canut), mango fruit, halved jack fruit,
 Rashi or Aries zodiac and is cele-         coconut, banana, sandalwood, gold
 brated with religious ceremonies and       ornaments, coins, brass Valkannadi
 rituals. Since Vishu is the starting of    (hand mirror), Kasavu mundu
 the New Year, people believe that it       (traditional dhoti), flowers of
 is significant for the next twelve         Kanikkonna (Cassia Fistula) and the
 months of the year. Traditionally,         holy text of Ramayana or Bhagvad
 Vishu is the harvest festival welcom-      Gita. All these materials are kept in     kannadi is the mind. The lighting of
 ing the spring season. In olden days,      an Uruli (open-mouthed shallow cir-       the deepam welcomes God into our
 farmers used to start ploughing the        cular vessel made out of bell metal).     lives and is symbolic of removing the
 land on this day.                                                                    darkness of ignorance. The auspi-
                                                     The Uruli traditionally is       cious commencement of the New
           This festival is celebrated in   made of panchaloham, an aggregate         Year comes to us due to the grace of
 Tulu Nadu region in Karnataka and is       of five metals. Panchaloham being         God and it is up to us to spread this
 known as Bisu. Puthandu or                 symbolic of the universe comprises        love, happiness and hope to the rest
 Chithirai Vishu is the Tamil New           the five elements - earth, water, fire,   of the society. Immediately on awak-
 Year celebrated by Tamilians and is        air and space. The flowers of             ening from sleep, people close their
 the first day in the Tamil month of        Kanikkonna represent the eyes of          eyes and proceed towards the place
 Chithirai. According to Tamil be-          Lord Vishnu and the gold coins sym-       where Vishu Kani is placed which is
 liefs, Chithirai Vishu is the day dur-     bolize affluence and spiritual wealth,    known as Kani Kanal (sighting of
 ing which Lord Brahma commenced            which the elders of the family must       Kani). Usually, the eldest female
 the creation. Telugu New Year and          share with the younger generation.        member takes the family members
 Kannada New Year are celebrated as         Deepams are kept in the two halves        one by one and shown the Kani. Af-
 Ugadi on the first day in Chaitra          of a split coconut. Similarly, Ashta-     ter the family members, it is the turn
 month. Marathi New Year day is             mangalyam may also be kept in the         of the plants and animals. Kani Uruli
 Gudi Padva which is celebrated on          Uruli which is placed in front of an      is taken to show them also the Kani.
 the same day of Ugadi. Cheti Chand         idol or portrait of Lord Krishna be-
 is the Sindhi New Year day which is        sides a lighted bell metal lamp           Vishu Kani is important in many fa-
 also the first day of Chaitra month.       (Nilavilakku).                            mous temples in Kerala such as Am-
 Bengali New Year day is Baisakh or                                                   balapuzha, Guruvayoor and Sabari-
 Poila Baisakh and Baisakhi in Pun-                  The Kani is the material         mala. Devotees visit these temples to
 jab. Assamese New Year day is              representation of the union of Prak-      have a darshan of Vishu Kani on the
 Bohag Bihu. The same day is cele-          ruti and Purusha. The Uruli repre-        early hours. It is also considered aus-
 brated as New Year in many parts of        sents Prakruti and it is believed that    picious to read verses from Adhyatma
 the country.                               Kala Purusha, Lord Vishnu and Lord        Ramayanam after seeing the Vishu
                                            Krishna occupy in it. Kanikkonna is       Kani. It is also believed that the page
        Vishu festival marks the day        His crown, Kanivellari is His face,       of the Ramayanam to which you
 of Mesha Sankranti or Mesha Sank-          coconut lamps are the eyes and Val-       open up will have a bearing on your

                                                                                                             Continues on page 6…….
PAGE    6

            (Continued from page 5)

       life in the coming year. Vishu Kani       Vishu Sadhya (feast) is a major part      Vishu has immense significance as-
       points to a year of abundance both        of the festival when vegetarian food      trologically as the day and night are
       spiritually and materially. Seeing the    is prepared. Vishu Kanji (porridge),      of equal duration. Major periodicals
       Vishu Kani, we should pray that the       Thoran and Payasam (pudding) are          in Malayalam carry Vishubhalam
       vision remains with us throughout the     essential items of the feast. The Kanji   (astrological predictions) for the next
       year. It is not enough that the joy we    is made of rice, coconut milk and         one year. Preparations for the agricul-
       get from seeing the Vishu Kani            spices. Fireworks are also an impor-      tural season also begin on the Vishu
       comes only to our eyes. Instead, it       tant part of Vishu celebrations in        day.
       must reflect in our thoughts and ac-      many parts of the state.
       tions. People wear new clothes                                                      (The author is a social activist and
       (Puthukodi) for the occasion and eld-     Vishu has integrated every thing dur-     Director, Indo-Gulf Consulting. He
       ers of the family give Vishu Kaineet-     ing this period. There is a migratory     can be contacted on
       tam (gift of money) to children, ser-     bird which normally visits Kerala
       vants and tenants. Vishu Kaineettam       during this time and is referred to as
       is considered as the blessing of Prak-
                                                 Vishu Pakshi (Pakshi means bird).
       ruti, Shakti, and Lakshmi.

            Death, Suicide, Euthanasia - Hindu’s Viewpoint
                                                    By : Gyan Rajhans (P. Eng.)
                  Recently one of my close       ment, guidance in matters of govern-      our minds at the point of death in
       friends died when the attending phy-      ance and commerce, artistic cultiva-      large part dictate where we will func-
       sician in the hospital ICU pulled the     tion, inventions and discoveries of       tion in the astral plane and the quality
       plug of his life support apparatus. My    medicine, science and technology all      of our next birth.
       friend must have signed a DNR (Do         continue by astral people who are "in
       Not Resuscitate) order form before        -between" earthly lives. Many of the                Suicide is generally prohib-
       he became unconscious. Be that as it      Veda hymns entreat the assistance of      ited in Hinduism, on the basis that it
       may, I was asked by his family mem-       advanced astral or mental people.         disrupts the timing of the cycle of
       bers to address his condolence meet-      Yet, also in the grey, lower regions of   death and rebirth and therefore yields
       ing in one of the local temples. This     this vast, invisible dimension exist      bad karma. According to one Hindu
       article not only contains the content     astral people whose life pursuits have    website, suicide is not approved in
       of my speech but also my research on      been base, selfish, and even sadistic.    Hinduism because human life is a
       artificially sustaining life and eutha-   Where the person goes in the astral       precious opportunity to attain higher
       nasia (mercy killing).                    plane after death is dependent upon       states of rebirth that even the gods
                                                 his earthly pursuits and the quality of   envy. It also has dire consequences
        Death Process                            his mind.                                 for the soul's spiritual progress.

                 Most Hindus know and be-        Suicide                                              According to Hindu beliefs,
       lieve that when the soul leaves the                                                 if a person commits suicide, he nei-
       physical body never to return to the               Hindus believe that all souls    ther goes to the hell nor the heaven,
       same body, the soul does not die.         reincarnate. The soul continues to        but remains in the earth conscious-
       However, what many do not know is         have experiences in the astral plane      ness as a bad spirit and wanders aim-
       that the soul continues to occupy the     until it is reborn again in another       lessly till he completes his actual and
       astral body, a subtle, luminous dupli-    physical body as a baby. It takes one     allotted life time. Thereafter he goes
       cate of the physical body. This subtle    body and then another, evolving           to hell and suffers more severely. In
       body is made of higher-energy astral      through experience over long periods      the end he returns to the earth again
       matter and dwells in a dimension          of time. Thus, death doesn't end our      to complete his previous karma and
       called the astral plane. The soul func-   existence but frees us to pursue an       start from there once again. Suicide
       tions with complete continuity in its     even greater development.                 puts an individual's spiritual clock in
       astral/mental bodies. The astral plane                                              reverse.
       is equally as solid and beautiful, as               Understanding this death
       varied and comprehensive as the           process, the Bhagvad Gita tells us to     Artificially Sustaining Life
       earth dimension-if not much more so.      be vigilant of our thoughts and men-      and Euthanasia
       Spiritual growth, psychic develop-        tal loyalties because the contents of
VOLUME        3,   ISSUE      2                                                                                             PAGE   7

           There is a critical timing in    participants will, to the degree con-      safety professional has been broad-
 the death transition. The dying proc-      tributed, face a similar karmic situa-     casting the only non-commercial
 ess can involve long suffering or be       tion in this or a future life. Finally,    Vedic religion radio program in
 peaceful or painfully sudden, all de-      there is exercising wisdom-which is        North America since 1981 & world-
 pendent on the karma involved. To          knowing and using divine law-in the        w i d e      w e b      c a st     o n
 keep a person on life support with the     overall context of any situation. since 1999.
 sole intent of continuing the body's                                                  Mr. Rajhans has published exten-
 biological functions nullifies the          Freedom from Rebirth                      sively on religious and spiritual mat-
 natural timing of death. It also keeps                                                ters. Some articles are available on
 the person's astral body earthbound,                 Life's real attainment is not    the Bhajanawali web site. He has
 tethered to a lower astral region          money, not material luxury, not sex-       translated Sri Mad Bhagvad Gita in
 rather than being released into higher     ual or eating pleasure, not intellec-      English for the younger generation.
 astral levels.                             tual, business or political power, or      Mr. Rajhans has been conferred
                                            any other of the instinctive or intel-     various titles, including that of Rishi
            An important lesson to learn    lectual needs. These are natural pur-      by Hindu Prarthana Samaj of To-
 here is that karma is conditioned by       suits, to be sure, but our divine pur-     ronto Hindu Ratna by Hindu Fed-
 intent. When the medical staff re-         pose on this earth is to personally        eration of Toronto. He received an
 ceives a dangerously ill or injured        realize our identity in and with God       award for 2005 in the Internet cate-
 person and they place him on life          usually referred as Enlightenment or       gory - Opinion - for his Spirituality
 support as part of an immediate life-      God-realization. After enlightenment       columns in South Asian Outlook e-
 saving procedure, their intent is pure     there is no longer a need for physical     Monthly, from Canadian Journal-
 healing. If their attempts are unsuc-      birth, for all lessons have been           ists' and Writers' Club (CEJWC),
 cessful, then the life-support devices     learned, all karmas fulfilled and God-     now re-named as Canadian Ethnic
 are turned off, the person dies natu-      ness is his natural mind state. That       Media Association.]
 rally and there is no karma involved       individual soul is then naturally liber-
 and it does not constitute euthanasia.     ated, freed from
 However, if the doctors, family or         the cycle of birth,
 patient decide to continue life support    death & rebirth
 indefinitely to prolong biological         on this planet.
 processes, (usually motivated by a
 Western belief of a single life) then                The
 the intent carries full karmic conse-      belief in karma
 quences. When a person is put on           and reincarnation
 long-term life support, he must be         brings to each
 left on it until some natural biological   Hindu         inner
 or environmental event brings death.       peace and self-
 If he is killed through euthanasia, this   assurance. The
 again further disturbs the timing of       Hindu knows that
 the death. As a result, the timing of      the maturing of
 future births would be drastically         the soul takes
 altered.                                   many lives and
                                            that if the soul is
            Euthanasia, the willful de-     immature in the
 struction of a physical body, is a very    present      birth,
 serious karma. This applies to all         then there is
 cases including someone experienc-         hope, for there
 ing long-term, intolerable pain. Even      will be many
 such difficult life experiences must       opportunities for
 be allowed to resolve themselves           learning        and
 naturally. Dying may be painful, but       growing in future
 death itself is not. All those involved    lives.
 (directly or indirectly) in euthanasia
 will proportionately take on the re-             [Gyan Ra-
 maining prarabdha karma (see my            jhans, an inter-
 article on the Karma Doctrine) of the      nationally recog-
 dying person. And the euthanasia           nized health &
PAGE    8

                                Broad View on Hindu Religion
                                                           By ; Aruna Duggal
                     The Hindu religion is the    worship.     Followers of the Arya         idols, etc. are so worshipped because
       most ancient in the world and is very      Samaj Reform movement do not bow           the devotees or worshippers need a
       complex. Hindus believe in one Su-         down to these idols or gods and this       form to focus on; someone they can
       preme God who exists in every single       differentiates them from the Sanatan       see; someone they can communicate
       thing on this earth and in what is be-     Hindu Dharma which follows the Pu-         with; someone who is listening to
       yond. Hindu faith perceives God to         ranic practices.                           them. The beauty of this concentra-
       be within each soul only waiting to be                                                tion lies in the fact that Hindus are not
       discovered. Actually this is the goal                God is the supreme power         bothered with the form of that icon; it
       of Hindu spirituality—to understand        who controls and governs everything        is the worship of the divine manifesta-
       and experience the truth.                  on this earth. His cosmic activity has     tion through its symbolic form, which
                                                  three aspects: the divine act of crea-     is of importance. Perhaps, Hindus are
                 The philosophy of the Hindu      tion under which the universe came         the only worshippers who at the back
       scriptures the Vedas, is deep and intri-   into being; the ongoing energy which       of their minds are aware of the form-
       cate and beyond the comprehension of       sustains the cosmos; the dissolution       less Truth which is God, but at the
       the common masses. God is omni-            of these objects when they attain new      same time they are the most devout
       present and is referred to by many         forms. These three elements have led       worshippers when they kneel, bow or
       different names. Brahma or God has         to the creation and worship of the         prostrate before these images.
       set down laws to govern human exis-        different forms of God—Brahma the
       tence, but these cosmic laws are be-       Creator, Vishnu the Sustainer and                    There is no other religion
       yond the grasp of the common man           Shiva the Destroyer. Hindus, like          which has so many icons in so many
       who finds it difficult to concentrate      Christians believe in the Trinity.         forms: water, fire, air, earth metal
       and worship a formless and invisible       Christians too bow either to the Fa-       clay, etc., as does the Hindu religion.
       entity. That is why preachers of the       ther, the Son or the Holy Spirit or to     The Christians revere Jesus as they do
       faith devised all these gods Hindus        all three. Similarly, Hindus may           Mary and the Cross. Muslims pay
                                                                     choose to worship       homage to the Kaaba which is a rock.
                                                                     all three collec-       Jews regard the Ark as holy. These
                                                                     tively or each sepa-    images are not God but the means
                                                                     rately. Each one is     through which it is found necessary to
                                                                     a manifestation of      communicate with Him. Humanity
                                                                     the Almighty and        needs something to lean on, then why
                                                                     each one is en-         not these icons which evoke spiritual
                                                                     dowed with su-          awareness and wisdom shared by all
                                                                     preme powers.           the faiths of the world.

                                                                      God is known by                  Hindu dharma is a system of
                                                                     hundreds of differ-     diverse beliefs and philosophies and
                                                                     ent names. These        grants total freedom of worship.
                                                                     attributes have led     Hindu practice involves an awareness
                                                                     to the creation of      of the Almighty and it is made by
                                                                     an infinite number      building shrines at home or in temples
                                                                     of deities who rep-     with icons representing the Supreme.
                                                                     resent a particular     Since God is immanent, that icon is
                                                                     and full aspect of      regarded as a manifestation of God.
                                                                     the Supreme. It         No one has ever advocated the wor-
                                                                     has been said that,     ship of any one particular deity. An
                                                                     ―Truth is one, the      individual can choose to worship any-
                                                                     wise call it by dif-    one who inspires his strongest faith
                                                                     ferent      names.‖     and trust. The outcome or end result
                                                                     These deities can       of attaining a tangible link with the
                                                                     be compared to the      indefinable, formless, invisible God,
                                                                     branches of a tree      is the object of this form of worship.
            Email :                              whose roots de-         As ―All roads lead to Rome.‖ so do all
                                                                     velop, sustain and      deities and icons lead to God. That is
                                                                     nourish them. All       what Hindus strive for.
                                                                     icons,       deities,
VOLUME        3,   ISSUE      2                                                                                             PAGE   9

                     Love is sacred, Marriage is Divine
                                                By : Dr. Tulsi Ram Sharma
     Sex is serious, love is sacred,        rationality.                                the long run. Societies which accept
 marriage of man and woman is di-                                                       sexual living without marriage of
 vine, and the child, a little Krishna.                The seven steps form the         man and woman face problems such
 The three are one, an instance of the      vow for the joint pursuit of food and       as loss of family, neglected and aban-
 union of Purusha and Prakriti and          health, energy and intellectual devel-      doned children, diseases, social
 extension of the creative process.         opment, wealth and well being, peace        crime, academic indiscipline and the
 The disintegration of this trinity is a    and progress, family and progeny,           decline of social values
 human aberration and a democratic          homogeneity with society and envi-
 hubris.                                    ronment, and friendship in conjugal-                  Today, the best value recog-
                                            ity, all to be pursued in steadfastness.    nized is professionalism and profes-
           What God hath joined let         Leave out any one, and you deny             sional education. Professional educa-
 not man put asunder, says the Scrip-       yourself the very purpose of marriage       tion can make you a good craftsman
 ture. Do not separate, live a happy        and self-fulfilment.                        but not necessarily a good human
 full life, says Veda to the wedded                                                     being. A good human being is the
 couple.                                              In the performance of ritual,     product of decent parentage, human
                                            a lot is courtesy and hospitality which     values based education, socially ori-
          There is a Greek myth:            can be observed just socially without       ented professional training and em-
 Originally man was a complete male-        making them a part of the ritual.           ployment. These are results of con-
 female unit. By accident, the duo got      Girls      sometimes      object     to     scientious social discipline, of which
 separated. Hence, love, search of          ―kanyadan,‖ as if the girl were a           marriage at proper age is a very im-
 one for the other. The Upanishad           piece of property being gifted away.        portant part. To start friendship, the
 says the same thing: The one divided       ―Kanyadana‖ means the parents‘              highest step of marriage, as the first
 into two like a legume. Thus tradi-        consent for the match and release of        in the midst of teenage whirlpools is
 tionally, naturally, psychologically       the girl from the parental discipline       bound to lead to anti-social conse-
 the man woman marriage is sacred           so that she may live her life freely in     quences. In the modern age of free-
 and rational.                              the new home. The parents do not            dom, imagine an unmarried girl being
                                            relinquish their obligation to the girl,    rushed to hospital from the examina-
          Whatever is natural is sa-        they maintain their love and support.       tion hall. Or imagine members of a
 cred, sanctioned by society and con-                                                   ―No-child freedom of choice society‖
 firmed by ritual and religion. It be-                ―Godan‖ is a ritual; the          of women asking for the social and
 comes legal too in organized society,      word ―cow‖ now means such gifts as          financial benefits of married mothers
 though everything legal may not be         the parents can afford according to         on the basis of equality!
 ethical and sacred, because in law         the girl‘s choice.
 man is the supreme authority, while
                                                                                                 Life is a hundred year plan,
 the sanctity of ritual is based on hu-               Love, union, loyalty, fidel-
                                                                                        well directed, self-accepted, for the
 man recognition and some One               ity, cooperation, friendship of the         achievement of Satyam, Shivam,
 higher.                                    soul, these are the basic values of a       Sundaram. That is Hinduism, basic,
                                            marriage ritual. Bound to these, you
                                                                                        essential, ritualistic, adjustable,
          A ritual is performed as a        are free to interpret and observe the
                                                                                        Sanatan yet modern, Nitya Nutan.
 solemn act, the act becomes a tradi-       ritual as you wish.
 tion. But tradition can be subject to
 change according to the circum-                       Marriage is not merely a
 stances and the environment. The           ritual, it is a sacred social institution
 spirit, meaning and message, how-          and a decent way of living a full life
 ever, does not, should not, change.        of integrated self-fulfilment. Viola-         We invite volunteers to write letter-
                                            tion of it is easy for any one, but the        to-editor in response to the arti-
           The basic and essential rit-     observance of it without the ritual            cles of this journal, opinion, col-
 ual in the Hindu tradition, recognized     and the social sanction could be the          umns or essays on social, cultural
 by courts, is Saptapadi, the bride and     choice, but of very rare people. Liv-          or religious issues, and for other
 bridegroom taking seven steps to-          ing single without marriage is okay,
 gether for the pursuit of love, loyalty,   but stepping out of singularity and
 fidelity and progeny. That is the es-      trespassing into the other territory                  Contact: Ajit Adhopia
 sence, the rest is all practice which      could be a crime, a sin and a social
 you can change according to your           stigma, leading to social disaster in                   Ph. : 905-273-9563
PAGE    10

                 Hindus Promote Environment Protection      By : Ajit Adhopia

                 How did religion influence       and appease Mother Earth and seek         polluted with industrial wastes. Delhi
       or shape our attitude towards the          forgiveness for violating her. Certain    has become one of the most polluted
       natural environment? UCLA history          plants, trees and rivers were consid-     cities in the world. Many beautiful
       professor Lynn White answered the          ered sacred, and worshipped in festi-     birds and animals have become ex-
       question in his article "The Historical    vals.                                     tinct. And this devastation is taking
       Roots of Our Ecological Crisis" pub-                                                 place in the name of progress. The
       lished in a1967issue of Science.                      In a traditional Hindu fam-    Indian environment-protection move-
       White wrote that the Western world's       ily, to insult or abuse nature is con-    ment is run by Westernized elites,
       attitude towards nature was shaped         sidered a sacrilegious act. A Hindu       and based on a Western model. It has
       by the Judeo-Christian tradition, Is-      mother would severely scold her           failed to become a mass movement,
       lam and Marxism. "God planned all          child for acts like ripping the limb of   for the simple reason that it is devoid
       (of creation) explicitly for man's         a plant or urinating or spitting on a     of the spiritual foundation or content
       benefit and rule: no item in physical      tree or in any body of water. Hindus      necessary to inspire Hindus.
       creation had any purpose save to           believed that humans, gods and na-
       serve man's purposes." According to        ture were integral parts of one                     Prof. David Frawley, author
       White, Western Christianity sepa-          "organic whole." Ancient Hindu writ-      of How I Became a Hindu (as well
       rated humans from nature, and cre-         ers personified each of the divine        as many books on Hinduism, yoga,
       ated a dualism, while the older relig-     forces as a devata or deity worthy of     and other related subjects), laments
       ions saw [divine] spirit in every tree,    reverence and worship. Even Char-         "... Hindus have forgotten this Vedic
       river, animal and bird. White claims       vaka, the atheist philosopher of an-      view of the earth and do not protect
       this Western concept encouraged            cient India, who totally rejected Ve-     their natural environment. They have
       exploitation and domination of nature      das, the primary Hindu scriptures,        not added a (traditional) Hindu point
       for the benefit of man. This tradi-        considered the principles of Vayu         of view to the ecology movement
       tional, western, exploitative attitude     (air), Bhumi (earth), Jala (water) and    which is perhaps the main idealistic
       to ecology gave birth to protest           Agni (fire) as important factors in       movement in the world today ... part
       movements such as Green Peace to           regulating the lives of humans, ani-      of the challenge of the modern Hin-
       protect the environment.                   mals and plants. This Hindu world-        duism is to reclaim its connection to
                                                  view of ancient Vedic times became        the earth."
                  To Hindus, the concept of       formalized into the Samkhya system
       environment protection is not a mod-       of philosophy that promoted ecology-      This article first appeared in the
       ern phenomenon; they inherited it          consciousness in Hindu attitude.          Religion Section of the Totronto
       from their ancestors. During the earli-                                              Star on February 5, 2005
       est, formative period of their society,              The Hindu peace prayer
       Hindus first perceived God's presence      called Shanti path, recited to con-
       around them through nature. The            clude every Hindu ceremony, reflects
       natural forces that governed their         the Hindus' connection to nature:          The moment I have real-
       daily lives were considered as mani-       "There is peace in heavenly region;
       festations of an Almighty Creator          there is peace in the environment; the       ized God sitting in the
       they called the Brahman (not to be         water is cooling; herbs are healing;        temple of every human
       confused with the Brahmin caste).          the plants are peace-giving; there is
       Ancient Hindus felt Brahman's pres-        harmony in the celestial objects and
                                                                                            body, the moment I stand
       ence in everything around them.            perfection in knowledge; everything       in reverence before every
       Since these divine forces sustained        in the universe is peaceful; peace        human being and see God
       all living creatures and organic things    pervades everywhere. May that peace
       on the earth, to please God, they felt     come to me."                                in him - that moment I
       they must live in harmony with His                                                     am free from bondage,
       creation, which includes rivers, for-                In the process of moderniza-        everything that binds
       ests, sun, the air and mountains. This     tion and their mimicking of western
       belief spawned many rituals that are       lifestyles and consumerism, modern         vanishes, and I am free.
       still followed by traditional Hindus in    Hindus have acquired the western
       India. For example, before the foun-       exploitative attitude towards nature.
       dation of a building is dug, a priest is   Lush forests have been denuded and           Swami Vivekananda
       invited to perform the Bhoomi Pooja        rivers, including the sacred river
       (earth worship) in order to worship        Gunga (the Ganges), have become
VOLUME        3,   ISSUE      2                                                                                            PAGE   11

                     How to Guard Against Conversion  By : Goerge Boyd
          Conversion can be brought         true path, their basic strategies are          your needs are and determine
 about by altering one‘s beliefs and        familiar to us in other forms: political       how you can meet these needs
 basic values through a series of so-       brainwashing, advertising, and yes,            through your own efforts, without
 phisticated psychological manipula-        hypnosis.                                      having to subject yourself to the
 tions. How is it done?                                                                    turmoil the conversion experience
                                                     Given this information, how           may bring to you.
          First, doubt is cast on your      then should we protect ourselves from
 current beliefs. Ridicule, recitation of   those who would convert our religious           It may well be that you have
 conflicting Scripture testimonials and     beliefs? us into a religion?               found no meaningful answer within
 the presentation of arguments that                                                    your own culture or religion. In such a
 prove the proselytizer‘s point of view     1) Recognize the proselytizer‘s intent     case, you may do well to listen to the
 make you question your current be-             and tactics, stop him in his track     voices of other faiths that may more
 liefs.                                         with a polite ―Thank you, I am         clearly resonate the sense of truth that
                                                not interested.‖                       resounds within. When inner revolu-
           Second, by active inquiry                                                   tion is required, you should, with dis-
 into your unfulfilled needs and de-        2)    Educate yourself about the psy-      cretion, consider conversion‘s merits.
 sires, the proselytizer gains a good            chology of brainwashing, adver-       If you already have a flowing foun-
 ‗hook‘ into your inner motivations.             tising and hypnosis. Learn to         tain, why seek out another well.
 He will then suggest, ―If you follow            recognize effects of suggestion in
 my path, your desires will be miracu-           yourself and learn how to psycho-     Mr. Boyd is a meditation teacher,
 lously fulfilled.‖                              logically immunize yourself and       author-philosopher, Mata visional
                                                 to de-hypnotize yourself.             reader and hypnotherapist. He has
          Third, once the proselytizer                                                 developed an integral system of medi-
 has you desiring to have your needs        3) Ignorance is the greatest friend of     tation, “The Yoga of the Seven
 met from his particular source of di-         the proselytizer. Study the relig-      Mudras”
 vine blessing, he will then attack your       ions of the world;
 self-image. He will make you feel             you will then be
 terrible about yourself, evoking the          able to see the nar-
 specters of your failures and frustra-        rowness of the
 tions. He will emphasize how weak,            proselytizer‘s ap-
 how insufficient, how mean and sinful         proach, and his
 you are and how great and glorious            obvious attempts to
 his God is. Then, seeing your misery          prey on your igno-
 and pain, which he evoked by his sug-         rance,     emotions
 gestion, he will compassionately offer        and deeper needs.
 you a solution- whichever brand of
 salvation he happens to be selling.        4)    Think for yourself
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PAGE    12

                   Thirukkural - The Tamil Bhagwath Gita
                       And Essence of Human Wisdom
                                           By : Shankar Swaminathan (Scarborough, Ontario)

                   Tamil language, considered    ate and assimilate the essence of hu-     from Tirukkural, we see in greater
       to be one of the most ancient lan-        man wisdom, and present it so pre-        depth the numerous messages con-
       guages in the league of Sanskrit,         cisely and in such simple terms that      veyed by Thiruvalluvar and the prac-
       Latin and Greek, is well known for        he could in the span of one life time,    tical relevance of the same, we see
       its rich literature such as Silappathi-   were it not for the divine grace of the   how in the very first chapter , the
       karam, Kamba Ramayanam, Seevaga           omnipotent and omnipresent. The           tone is set by Thiruvalluvar by his
       Sinthamani, Ettuthogai, Pathuppattu       feat can without any hesitation be        paeans to GOD wherein Thiruvallu-
       and numerous others. Ancient Tamil        compared to the ‗conquest‘ of the         var laments about the futility of for-
       kings and emperors such as the Cho-       great spiritual giant Adhi Sankara        mal education unless it fails to per-
       las, Cheras, Pandiyas, and Pallavas       who rejuvenated the ethos and spirit      suade a man to be humble and recog-
       were all great patrons of Tamil litera-   of the Hindus of Bharath or India.        nize the superior power of the Al-
       ture and patronizing, supporting and      The manner of presentation of Thi-        mighty, which should in the normal
       encouraging the great poets, was a        rukkural is such that the essential       course convince him to surrender
       natural and passionate thing for them     message can be appreciated and un-        himself to the divine.
       to do. Given such an impetus, Tamil       derstood without any difficulty by the
       language flourished and grew and          ordinary masses.,.                                  Thiruvalluvar strives to im-
       continued to be enriched with literary                                              ply that the first and foremost objec-
       works as cited above. Among such                   Thiruvalluvar divided Thi-       tive of formal education should be to
       works, Tirukkural was arguably the        rukkural into three broad streams in      make man wise enough to realize his
       most remarkable classic and consid-       dealing with different aspects of hu-     own limitations. According to Thiru-
       ered to be of prime relevance for its     man endeavors. The three broad            valluvar, formal education should
       practical message pertaining to eter-     streams are known as ARATHUP-             enable a man to realize that it is be-
       nity...                                   PAL, PORUTPPAL AND KA-                    yond the comprehension of the hu-
                                                 MATHUPPAL which roughly trans-            man brain to unravel the ultimate
                 Thirukkural written by Sage     lated, would mean Virtue and Jus-         truth, which would provide answers
       Poet Thiruvalluvar consists of 1330       tice, Materialism and Material            to questions such as the limits of in-
       two-line verses that are divided into     Wealth and Love and Pleasure,             finity, origin of the universe, limits of
       133 chapters. While there is no au-       the last one dealing specifically and     space and time, the soul‘s ultimate
       thentic account of the number of lan-     somewhat extensively about the            destination etc. Thiruvalluvar says
       guages Thirukkural has been trans-        equations between       man and a         that the one who realizes this truth
       lated into, Tamils claim that the         woman and the different influences        will be free from all worries as he
       much revered and admired work rec-        and factors determining the nature of     would have reconciled himself to the
       ognized by international intellectuals    the same.                                 fact that it is not within his powers to
       and authors as one of the foremost                                                  reverse adverse situations at all times
       among the ‘wisdom literatures’ has                 Even while numerous topics       or rectify the causes that led to the
       been translated into most languages       are dealt with, Thiruvalluvar wher-       adversities in the first place.
       next only to the Bible and the Quran.     ever relevant, does not fail to invoke
       It would be no exaggeration to state      the ultimate role played by the hand                On reading the first chapter,
       that there are so many aspects of hu-     of God and imply the importance of        one is inevitably reminded of the
       man life dealt with in Thirukkural,       divine intervention in whatever goes      statement by the revered Philosopher/
       which is why it is aptly described in     on in this world. The practical appli-    s/politician, the alter ego of Mahatma
       certain quarters as the Tamil Bhaga-      cation of the messages conveyed by        Gandhi and the first Governor Gen-
       wath Gita and indeed the essence of       Thirukkural and relevant for all          eral of independent India, Shri Ra-
       human wisdom.                             times, makes the work unique and          jagopalachari, lovely called Rajaji
                                                 comparable to the Bhagwath Gita           said, ―For one who believes in God,
                It is truly beyond one‘s         from which moral lessons and guid-        no explanation is necessary and for
       comprehension as to how an ordinary       ing principles can be drawn for the       one who does not believe in God, no
       mortal, no matter how erudite, could      conduct and activities of ever day        explanation is possible.‖ This was
       have had the amazing capacity to          life... While in the following articles   said in answer to the differing nature
       observe, comprehend, analyze, evalu-      on various topics randomly selected       of believers and agnostics. It was also
VOLUME       3,   ISSUE      2                                                                                               PAGE   13

 a way of answering the non believers       above. . This essentially means that         esty is likely to emerge, now or ever.
 who kept questioning about the exis-       the existence of the omnipresent and
 tence of super natural powers and          omnipotent divine Lord can be felt                     Well, it is absolutely certain
 kept claiming that every entity in this    and realized only by the believer and        that one who reads Tirukkural with
 universe originates from Matter. One       the one who does not believe can do          the respect and humility that it de-
 cannot possibly improve upon Ra-           no more than to eternally keep asking        serves, is bound to reap the reward of
 jaji‘s explanation by way of answer        questions about something, for which         forever leading a moral, spiritual and
 to the ultimate question as mentioned      no answer with conviction and hon-           psychologically healthy life.

                        Hindu Contributions to Science By : Ajit Adhopia

      ANCIENT CHEMISTRY                           Unfortunately, the practices           community for more than three dec-
                                            remained more as useful arts than as         ades. Scientists of the Indian Institute
            In India, the beginnings of     branches of a developing chemical            of Technology at Bombay have been
 chemistry as practical and purposeful      knowledge. As a result, the technical        conducting experiments to check the
 art are noticeable in remote antiquity.    arts, though engendered from time to         validity of Bhardwaja‘s scientific
 Of particular importance is the            time by extraordinary skills and             knowledge and achievements in the
 knowledge as well as the technique         craftsmanship, began to show signs           field of solar energy and aeronautics.
 concerning the baking of clay and          of decay for want of a proper concep-        In their first experiment, they studied
 production of pottery, i.e. of objects     tual framework.                              a component of an instrument,
 fashioned from clay and hardened by                                                     Chumbakmani. On the basis of the
 fire. The use of pottery has an added                                                   formula described in Brahad Vimana
                                              AERONAUTICS IN ANCIENT                     Sastra, they were able to produce a
 significance in the history of chemis-               INDIA
 try. For, besides satisfying the pot-                                                   shining black substance which has
 ter‘s urge to create forms and paint            One would be astounded to learn         been known as soft ferrite and semi-
 artistically on them, the use of pot-      that ancient Hindus had highly ad-           conductor material. In another ex-
 tery enabled the ancient practical         vanced knowledge of aeronautics.             periment, they reproduced a solution
 chemist to develop processes involv-       The most ancient Hindu scriptures,           called Pargrandhikadrava by Bhard-
 ing prolonged heating, fusion, evapo-      Vedas, make clear references to air          waja. This solution is sensitive to
 ration and, more importantly, the          travel. Other literature- Ramayana,          light and changes colour when ex-
 treatment of minerals. India, has          Mahabharata- also gives glowing              posed to solar radiation. The materi-
 been well known for a number of            description of a flying vehicle called       als produced in the two experiments
 pottery types from the Neolithic           Vimana. Such references cannot be            are components of an instrument
 phase right up to the medieval period,     dismissed as science fiction or poeti-       (described as Guhabarbhadarsa Yan-
                                            cal fantasies. Sage Bhardwaja, proba-        tra) of an aircraft. Further evaluations
           Metal - working, processing      bly the first solar scientist, outlines in   of Bhardwaja‘s work are still in pro-
 of various naturally occurring miner-      great details the technology to build        gress at the Indian Institute of Tech-
 als, slaking of the burnt limestone,       both military and commercial air-            nology.
 compositions of mortar and cement,         planes in his works Yantra Sarvasva               Hindu Canadians are very proud
 preparation of fermented juices, ex-       and Brahad Vimana Sastra. These              of their legacy of outstanding scien-
 traction of essential oils, use of pig-    vehicles were driven by solar energy         tific achievements by their forefa-
 ments, and production of different         and their speed ranged from 1000             thers. The achievements of Hindu
 types of glass were among the note-        miles an hour to 20,000 miles an             scientists working in Canada and the
 worthy chemical practices in India         hour. The technology to utilize solar        USA are proving that their thirst for
 even in very ancient times. Though it      energy is described in his outstanding       knowledge is as intense as that of
 is rather difficult to trace the indige-   scientific work Amsubodhini Sastra,          sage Bhardwaja.
 nous origins of these practices, there     which gives an exhaustive analysis of
 is no doubt that most of them grown        the properties of Solar Rays.                Source: Ajit Adhopia‘s book The
 out of the sustained efforts and spe-                                                   Hindus of Canada published by
                                                 Sage Bhardwaja‘s books on pure
 cial technical abilities of the people                                                  Inderlekh Publications (1993)
                                            science and aircraft technology have
 of the region, reached peaks of excel-
                                            been known to the Indian scientific
 lence at times.

                                                                                                                 Continues on page 14……
PAGE   14

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PAGE    16

                                The Law of Karma Applies to All
                                                          By : Shakun Kimatrai
              Once King Dasharatha, was         self. Rama promised to help Sugre-                 To Krishna death did not
       out on a hunting spree. He was so        eva get his kingdom and wife back.          matter as He believed that the Aat-
       proficient in the art; that he could                                                 man (Soul) is imperishable. You
       aim at a target only by by hearing a     A battle ensued.                            might ask if Krishna had not the
       sound. On a certain trip, he mistook                                                 power of NOT to be subjected to the
       a young boy as a deer, and                      While Sugreeva and Bali              Law of Karma. Surely, He did, but
       fired. The boy died instantly. That      fought, Rama shot an arrow from             He probably wanted to set an exam-
       young boy‘s name was Shravan             behind a tree and Bali was killed.          ple, of how to accept the inescap-
       Kumar.                                   Some argue that Shri Ram should             able Law of equanimity and the
                                                have allowed the 2 brothers to fight        Law of Karma.
               Shravan Kumar was a de-          on without intervention from his
       voted son. His aged parents were         side and that he should not have                   Sri Sri Ravi Shankar believes
       blind. He was carrying them over         shot the arrow from behind the tree.        that Rama and Krishna went
       his shoulder in wicker baskets, to a     (Shooting from behind a tree is sym-        through a gamut of human experi-
       pilgrimage center that his parents so    bolic. We may think that we fight           ences in order to make us realise
       wished to visit. The boy had gone to     and win all the battles of life but it is   that God need not be a distant con-
       get drinking water for his thirsty       actually God‘s unseen hand that is          cept; God can be one among us too.
       mother and father, when he was           behind our victories).
       mistaken for a deer by King                                                                  The concept of avataar is
       Dasharatha, and was fired at and                While Bali lay wounded he            common in the East in countries like
       killed. It is mentioned in the Scrip-    asked Rama to take care of his              India, China, Japan, Korea and Ne-
       tures that even our so called            son Angad. Rama wanted to bring             pal. Nripo Narayano Hari: the king
       Avataars and great personalities         Bali back to life since Bali felt re-       is regarded as the avataar of Vishnu.
       could not escape the effects of Law      pentant of his previous misdeeds.           Vaidhyo Narayano Hari: The doctor
       of Karma. I have read that for an        But Bali ,being a good soul, who            too, is venerated as Vishnu-
       incarnation of God, to don the hu-       had been deluded for a while, feared        avataar...the avataar is like a mother
       man body, He had to acquire the          that he might not have the opportu-         going to her child; there is greater
       alloy of ‗Maya‘( The world of illu-      nity of dying in the Lord‘s                 emotional bonding...Your love for
       sion). One of the Laws that pertains     arms again, if he chose to recuper-         God becomes authentic when you
       to ‗Maya‘ is the ‗Law of Karma‘.         ate from his wounds at that time. So        are assured of His love for you. In
                                                Bali chose to die in the arms of            the Bhagavad Geeta it is Krishna
             Allow me to give you a few         Shri Ram with a smile on his lips.          who first tells Arjuna "You are dear
       examples.                                                                            to me", which enabled Arjuna to
                                                       I said earlier that ―While           surrender.
               King Dasharatha repented         Sugreeva and Bali fought, Rama
       for his hasty action, but the old par-   shot an arrow from behind a tree                   Since ages, we've been striv-
       ents of Shravan Kumar cursed him         and Bali was killed‖ That action had        ing to reduce the gap between our-
       that King Dasharatha would also          to have a reaction according to the         selves and God. There are two ways
       give up his life pining for his son,     Law of Karma.                               to do this: One way is to elevate
       just like the two old helpless people                                                humankind towards Divinity ...The
       were about to do.                                When Sri Rama incarnated            second way is to bring God down to
                                                as Sri Krishna, the latter was shot at      human level in the avataar
               Those who have read the          by a hunter who mistook him for a           form...Whenever you feel immense
       Ramayana are aware that King             prey. That shot proved to be fatal for      respect, wherever you get a glimpse
       Dasharatha died pining for his son       Lord Krishna. When the hunter be-           of Divinity, know that it is avataar.
       Rama when the latter was exiled to       came inconsolable due to his care-
       the forests for 14 long years through    less act, Sri Krishna calmly said that              Editor’s note: The author
       no fault of his.                         the hunter was not to blame. It was         has written many books on Hindu
                                                the rightful reaction. Sri Krishna ,        customs, traditions and social is-
        Here is another example.                hiding behind a tree,had killed Bali        sues. She has been interviewed on
                                                during His incarnation as Shri Ram          TV shows. She is also an ardent
       Sri Rama, during his sojourn in the      and now Shri Krishna was to leave           social activist. This articles is being
       forest killed King Bali. Bali had        the body because of that sin by be-         reproduced here from her website
       unjustly banished his brother Sugre-     ing shot at from a hiding by a     with her con-
       eva from the kingdom and had forci-      hunter. This is the Law of Karma.           sent
       bly taken his brother‘s wife for him-
VOLUME       3,   ISSUE      2                                                                                              PAGE   17

  The Global Hindu - Religion & Culture Confusion
                                           By : Garima Saini (New Delhi, India)
           Today‘s India faces a divide     little time to think about religion and    Pradesh, Thirupathi in Andhra
and it is not an India Vs West divide       its various manifestations until I         Pradesh, the ghaats of Haridwar and
but it is an old Vs young divide. 60%       started living alone in a different city   the Vaishno Devi shrine to look for
of the population in India right now        with different sensibilities. It was       some answers. I do admit that visit-
is below 45 and clearly what worked         then that I realized that I was follow-    ing all these places made me feel
for the past generations doesn‘t work       ing all that my mother asked me to         peaceful. The 14 km uphill trek to the
now. And as a young upwardly mo-            even when she was 2000 miles away.         Vaishno Devi shrine, the crowded by
bile Indian/Hindu I am quite confi-         My subconscious was religiously            -lanes of Vrindavan soaked in 5000
dent that the confusion that I face         more active and receptive than my          years of history, the 5 hour wait for a
today is shared by every Indian of my       conscious.                                 5 second darshan of the sandalwood
age living in India. I have always                                                     scented sanctum sanctorum in Thiru-
believed that my identity of being an                 I felt this need to do things    pathi, did stir something inside. But
Indian is far more important than that      the Hindu way. Another startling           what also shook me up was the ram-
of being a Hindu. In fact, I would          revelation was that no matter how          pant and blatant commercialization of
safely say that till the age of 15 being    much I had rejected the image of a         religion. The more you can donate
a Hindu was a fact taken for granted        God as the one I had seen in my            the lesser time you will have to spend
and my religious self surfaced only         house and in temples; my subcon-           in the queues waiting for your turn to
on Diwali and on similar occasions.         scious had subtly accepted that im-        see the Holy Lord. Is my God so ma-
Being raised by a God-fearing, ritual-      age. The first thing that I did when I     terialistic and so protocol conscious
following and staunch Brahmin               moved to Chennai was to look for a         that unless I spend a certain amount
mother didn‘t offer much help as she        temple near my house. Now Chennai          of money and walk the exact number
never imposed her ideologies on any         is full of temples but I was looking       of steps to a temple will he be
of her kids. So for me, being a Hindu       for one familiar to me with the gods       pleased? I do not have answers to
meant not having non-vegetarian             and goddesses that I was used to see-      these questions but I would definitely
food, not shampooing on certain             ing while growing up. When I could-        like to know so that I can pass it on to
days, not visiting temples on certain       n‘t find any I asked my mother to          the future generations.
days and similar such dos and don‘ts        send me pictures of ‗our‘ Gods and
which I did not understand and was          Goddesses so that I could have them
never motivated enough to find out.         in my house. My best friend who                      Deep in my heart, I know
                                            moved to Texas from New Delhi              that all is not lost, and if we can see
          This sense of vagueness and       after her marriage saw herself in a        beneath the layers of vested interests
disillusionment was more deeply             similar situation.
ingrained after witnessing communal                                                    of certain religious groups and or-
disturbances in various parts of the                  After several years, when I      ganizations, we will find deep rooted
country over so many years. I was           feel more grown up, sensible and           ideologies which are based on scien-
always God fearing but could never          wiser, I do think that some of my          tific principles, commonsense, and
visualize God in any shape or form. I       doubts have died but some of them          without dogmas. I have always felt
was very sure that whatever God is,         have actually started bothering me.        that Hinduism has a lot more to offer
his or her motive was not death and         Now my doubts are essentially exis-        to an average follower than just a list
destruction. With all this and the per-     tential in nature and I am constantly
ils of modern day life, more often                                                     of do‘s and don‘ts. For me, Hinduism
                                            trying to understand the larger objec-
than not, religion for me took a back       tive, the bigger picture and the ulti-     is more than a ‗religion‘; it is a way
seat. Studies, job, the 4 hour com-         mate aim of our lives. I visited the       of life with a lot of emphasis on one‘s
mute to office and the regular grind        Brahma Temple in Pushkar, Rajast-          own purification, development and
of a regular life left me with very         han, Vrindavan in Mathura, Uttar           spirit.
PAGE    18

                                    My Thoughts on Hinduism
                                              By : Ethan Sameer Srivastava (Age 12)

                 Religion is the worship of       up of the three most powerful gods:     person dies, depending on how good
       one of multiple superpowers known          Brahma, the Creator; Vishnu as pre-     he was in his past life, his soul goes
       as God or gods. I am a Hindu. Hindu-       server, and Shiva as destroyer. Their   into a new body. Reincarnations are
       ism is the worship of one deity who        Consorts make up the Devi Trimurti      in this order- bug, plant, animal, beg-
       has many forms, male and female.           - Saraswati is Brahma‘s wife, Lak-      gar getting along rich, in heaven.
       Many deities have multiple heads,          shmi is Vishnu‘s wife and Parvati
       such as Kartikeya, Santoshi, Brahma,       Shiva‘s wife. Parvati is the most
       Kali, Agni and Bhudevi, Some have          powerful goddess of all. She has the    Editor’s Note: Ethan, the author of
       multiple arms, such as Vishnu, Lak-        most forms of any other god- they       this essay, is a grade 6 student at the
       shmi, Saraswati, Parvati, Shiva,           are Durga, Chandika, Chamunda,          Salt Lake Arts Academy, Salt Lake
       Durga and Chandika, etc. Same have         Kali Ma, Maheshwari Ma, Vashnavi,       City, Utah, USA. This article was
       both, such as Kali Brahma, Agni and        Ma Brahmani and Ma Santoshi, and        first sent to Mr. Shiam Tripathi, the
       Santoshi. Each God has an occupa-          Ma Jagatamata, Ma Ambika, Ma            publisher of the Hindi Magazine
       tion; Lakshmi is wealth, Santoshi is       Gayatri and Ma Santoshi.                Chetna. It was forwarded to us for
       motherhood, Agni is fire and so on.                                                publication in the Canadian Hindu
                                                          Hindus believe in reincarna-    Link.
                The Hindu Trimurti is made        tion. Reincarnation means when a

                      Matru Devo Bhawa - Mother is Divine
                                                        By : Falitaa Chhabra

                     Maa, Amma, Mom,              right and when we need her the most.    power is worshipped alongside God
       Mama, Mummy…it doesn't matter              What we do for our mothers?             as the Divine Mother. This is the
       what the language is, the love and                                                 origin of mother worship and thus the
       affection represented by this single                Every year in May, we cele-    idea that the human mother is worthy
       word remains the same every where          brate Mother‘s Day – a celebration      of reverence and worship just as the
       and in every language. When you are        that honors mothers, motherhood and     Divine Mother or Shakti.
       in pain, the first word that comes out     maternal bonds. People take this day
       of your mouth is "mamma"; this             as an occasion to reflect on the im-              Mother‘s Day is celebrated
       word has the power to make you feel        portance of mothers and to appreciate   just once a year. But every day of our
       secure in the hardest of times.            the endless sacrifices they make. The   life exists because of mothers. So if
                                                  idea of worshipping Mother Nature,      you‘re mother is nearby, put this pa-
                  Somehow, mothers make           and the divine as the Eternal Mother    per down and go give her hug!
       everything look so easy. I look at my      has been in the Hindu tradition from
       mother and sometimes wonder – how          time immemorial. Goddesses, such as
       did she find the time for my sister        Lakshmi, Saraswati, Parvati, Durga
       and I during the most crucial years of     and Kali, are worshipped as forms of      Take up one idea. Make that
       our development while starting and         the Universal Mother. Women are           one idea your life - think of
       managing her own enterprise; one           considered manifestations of the Di-      it, dream of it, live on idea.
       way or another she always made time        vine Mother.
       to juggle between her meetings and
                                                                                               Let the brain, muscles,
       still attend all our school productions,            'Matru devo bhava' – in           nerves, every part of your
       and drive us to numerous after-school      other words, mother is divine. Ac-         body, be full of that idea,
       extracurricular activities. Even now,      cording to our scriptures, God cre-        and just leave every other
       years later she continues to have          ates, maintains and destroys the uni-    idea alone. This is the way to
       loudest cheer in an auditorium full of     verse but the power with which he
       people each time my sister or I make       performs these functions is called                  success.
       our way to the stage. She instinc-         Shakti (universal energy) and this
       tively knows when things are not           takes a female form. This Shakti or          Swami Vivekananda
VOLUME         3,   ISSUE        2                                                                                                 PAGE   19

             Yama - Basic Human Values in Hinduism
                                                      By : Chintamani Rath
      As a Hindu, I have to believe in           Daya: A Hindu has compassion and           Dana: This means to give, to teach, to
 and accept certain basic human values.         sympathy for all living creatures. Hin-     distribute, to share, to purify and to
 If I can adopt and practice them, so           duism is a "religion" of love, kindness,    protect. A Hindu is ever ready with
 much the better. These values are              mercy, selflessness and rendering assis-    these attributes.
 sometimes referred to as "Yama": some          tance to the needy even at great cost to
 scholars say there are five Yama, others       oneself.                                    Akalkata: This means being free of
 say there are ten, yet others say there                                                    sin. In Hinduism, the word "sin" is not
 are eight. On a comparison of various          Kshanti: This is an amalgam of related      used in the same way as it is used in a
 views, the following emerge in consen-         virtues -- the combined virtues of pa-      religion like Christianity. In Hinduism,
 sus:                                           tience, forgiveness and tolerance and       sin is not an action. It is the reaction to
                                                withstanding suffering. As a Hindu, I       an action. The abovementioned nine
 Satyam: As a Hindu, I believe that I           am catholic of outlook, believing in a      values prevent a person from commit-
 should speak the truth. Here, truth must       live and let live policy. I am not a fun-   ting a bad deed (a "sin" in the Christian
 be tempered with kindness and com-             damentalist or a bigot. Religious perse-    sense of the word). This value of
 passion when needed. If the truth              cution is rarely found in the history of    Akalkata prevents one from reacting
 causes harm, when it may sometimes             Hinduism. When Charvak propounded           negatively to perceived evil. It does not
 do, it is better not to say it. For exam-      his anti-Vedic and materialist theories,    mean being proactive in remedying the
 ple, it is sometimes better not to reveal      no order (or the equivalent of the - al-    wrong. It merely means not being judg-
 to a terminally ill patient the terminal       though Buddhism is anti-Hindu, anti-        mental and condemning somebody
 nature of his illness. This depends upon       Sanskrit and anti-Brahmin, Buddha has       without a full appreciation of the facts
 a variety of circumstances including the       been recognized as accorded the place       and circumstances. It means not adopt-
 personality of the patient. Individual         of the ninth Incarnation of the Supreme     ing a superior, virtuous "holier-than-
 circumstances, and no general rule,            Godhead (Vishnu).                           thou" mental attitude. In one of our
 must decide which truth must be tem-                                                       Texts, a story is told of a righteous
 pered in which manner. Our great Texts         Arjavam: This refers to simplicity,         vegetarian Brahmin who would leave
 are full of many discussions, illustra-        straightforwardness and absence of          home every morning on his daily work.
 tions, stories, etc., on this very point. It   deceit. A Hindu is one who believes in      His rounds would take him along a
 is said, "Satyam Brooyat, Priam                such openness and who is free from          certain narrow lane in which there was
 Brooyat", i.e. the truth and the pleasant      hypocrisy. Kayena Manasa Vacha (by          a butcher's shop. As the Brahmin would
 truth should be spoken.                        body, mind and speech -- this last in-      pass the shop, he would say to himself,
                                                cludes deed), he is one and only one        "My God, my God, what a sinner this
 Ahimsa: A Hindu believes in non-               person. The Shantipaatha of the             butcher is. He kills many innocent ani-
 violence. This does not mean vegetari-         RgVeda begins thus: "May my speech          mals every day". When both died, the
 anism, for there does not appear to be         (this includes deed) be established in      butcher went to heaven and the Brah-
 any reason for destroying plant life if        (meaning be in conformity with) my          min went to hell. The butcher had not
 animal life is not to be sacrificed, too.      mind and may my mind be established         sinned (because he did not think about
 One reason a vegetarian gives for not          in my speech...":-- "Aum Vaang Me           his actions) but the Brahmin had, by his
 eating meat is that meat comes from            Manasi Pratishthitaa Mano Me Vaachi         reaction to the butcher's actions.
 violence -- "Himsa"; then, if taking life      Pratishthitam ..." This was a prayer
 is cruel, why does he eat at all? After        written about eight millennia ago,              Editor’s Note:This article is a
 all, even plants have life and also feel       showing the refinement of the Hindu         short, edited version, and part of a
 pain as well as pleasure.                      mind even at an age so ancient              longer article.The whole article may
                                                                                            be found at
 No, the meaning of Ahimsa is not               Madhuryam: A Hindu believes in              hinduism.html
 vegetarianism. Rather, Ahimsa means            possessing sweetness of disposition and
 not doing violence beyond that bare            a pleasing and pleasant personality. He         Author Acharya Dr. Chintamani
 minimum without which we ourselves             is not rude or impolite and comes             Rath, M.Com., LL.M., PhD is a
 cannot survive.                                across as a balanced and likeable per-      scholar-musician, currently based in
                                                son.                                         New Zealand but, previously in In-
 Asteyam: This means not taking that                                                        dia. He invites comments/questions:
 which does not belong to one. "Stena"          Dama: This is self-control, i.e., the                e-mail directly to him at
 means "stealing"). As a Hindu, I will          control of passions. A Hindu does not     
 not steal or appropriate for myself that       allow his baser impulses to the get the
 which is not rightly mine. Greed and           better of him. He does not surrender to
 selfishness have no place in the scheme        the demands of his sense organs to
 of things of a practicing Hindu.               perverse limits.
PAGE    20

           Contributions of Arya Samaj to Hindu Society
                                                         By : Dr. Ravi Srivastava
            Before we discuss the Arya Samaj        Party during freedom movement. .              women started losing their status in
       and its contributions, we should ask a       Thanks to Swamiji, in 1950, The In-           society. The women were not eligible
       question. ―What compelled Maharishi          dian Constitution adopted the principle       for the study of Vedas, nor for use of
       Swami Dayanand to establish the Arya         of providing equal social, religious and      mantras in performing sacraments ex-
       Samaj?‖ He saw the degraded and de-          cultural rights to the Dalits. For the last   cept marriage. Manus law stated that
       based condition of the Hindus. He            30 years, Swami Agnivesh has been             being tender, women should be pro-
       wanted to unite the Hindus into one          fighting an uncompromising fight              tected by father in childhood, by her
       united people to cast off the artificial     against Untouchability.                       husband in young age and by the sons
       and self-imposed bonds that tied them                                                      in old age. She lost her identity after
       to their present position. He wanted         Caste System:                                 marriage. During the Mogul rule,
       them to remove from their eyes the                                                         women suffered further degradation and
       bandage that prevented them from see-                  The Sanskrit word for the           seclusion. All this culminated into new
       ing the light of Truth and Liberty. He       caste is Varna, which means a group of        evils such as child marriage, Sati, Jau-
       wanted the society to arise pure and         people having a specific social rank.         har and restriction on girls‘ education.
       strong, and take the proper place among      Varna is used in Vedas to denote social
       the nations of the world.                    class or category, not colour. With the                 Maharishi Swami Dayanand
                                                    evolution of society, in order to main-       was deeply perturbed with this sad
                  With the above goals in mind,     tain law and order and to govern effec-       plight of Indian women and was an
       Maharishi Swami Dayanand established         tively, it became essential to classify       early advocate of female education.
       the Arya Samaj on April 10, 1875. The        people not only in terms of their differ-     Around 1870, Swamiji opened several
       Arya Samaj was based entirely on the         ent qualities but also with respect to        Patashalas (schools) at Farrukabad,
       authority of the Vedas conditioned by        their different privileges. Each class        Kashi, Kasganj and Challsan. He also
       Rationalism and Utilitarianism. The          thus, had a specific role to play in soci-    initiated a Kanya Pathshala ( a girl
       sixth Principle of the Arya Samaj illus-     ety as well as a unique function. The         school) at Meerut. After Swamiji‘s
       trates the main goal of the Samaj. It        Varna of Brahmins was commonly                death , the Arya Samaj movement under
       states, ―The Prime object of the             identified with the learned. The Varna        the leadership of teachers like Swami
       Samaj is to do good to the world i.e.        of Kshatriyas was associated with Ruler       Shraddhanand, Lala Dev Raj etc, con-
       to ameliorate physical, spiritual and        and Warriors. The Varna of Vaishyas           tinued to establish many girl schools.
       social standards of all persons.” Since      was associated with Commercial liveli-        With the success of Kanya Pathshalas,
       its establishment, the Arya Samaj            hood. While the Varna of Sudras, was          on June 14, 1896 the Samaj established
       movement has made innumerable con-           associated with menial labour. All were       the Kanya Mahavidhyalay ( Institute of
       tributions in the social and spiritual       interlinked and functioned in close co-       higher education for women). The stu-
       fields. I shall focus on the major contri-   operation. Yet, the hereditary caste          dents of this institution included a mix-
       butions by the Samaj in the Social field:    system also institutionalized great ine-      ture of unmarried, married and widow
       untouchability, the caste system and the     quality and discrimination, as seen in        women. Since then the Arya Samaj has
       education of women                           the notion of Untouchability. There are       opened over 500 Institution throughout
                                                    thousands of Vedic mantras where we           India. Indian women are indebted to
       Untouchability:                              pray to GOD to let all live together, eat     Swamiji and the Arya Samaj for restor-
                                                    together, enjoy together, pray and pro-       ing their rights so that they can become
                 Swamiji was deeply perturbed       gress together, fight the evil together       the President, the Prime Minister of
       by the attitudes of Orthodox Brahmins        and work for global peace together.           India and can compete with men as
       towards the oppressed class of the Hin-      Indeed, the Vedas also teach us that in       equals in every field of life.
       dus, known as Dalits. They were not          the sight of GOD, all are equal and
       allowed to enter Hindu temples and           caste makes no difference. The Arya                     As a whole, it can be said that
       homes nor attend Brahman rituals. They       Samaj has been propagating and imple-         the reforms of Arya Samaj are of great
       were prohibited to fetch water from the      menting this in eradicating the caste         significance and have made huge im-
       village wells. Their children were not       system.                                       pacts on the contemporary Hindu soci-
       allowed to study in the village school                                                     ety. The Arya Samaj has become a ma-
       with other children. Swamiji was first to              As a priest, I am delighted to      jor acculturative movement with its
       declare equal rights for lower castes, the   say that our children are forcing the         purified Hinduism.
       right to education, right to reciting the    parents to break the fetters of the preva-
       Veda mantras, right to inter-caste din-      lent orthodox caste system. I have per-       Editor’s Note: Dr. Ravi Srivastava is
       ning, right to Vedic marriage ceremony,      formed over 150 inter-caste marriages         the founding President of Arya
       and right to fetch water from common         and over 250 inter-racial marriages           Samaj Mississauga, and has been a
       wells. Swami Shraddhanand (formerly          during the last 10 years.                     volunteer Priest for the Samaj for the
       known as Lala Munshi Ram) spent his                                                        last 12 years. He can be reached
       whole life for the upliftment of un-         Education of Women:                           at website:dev_srivastava@hotmail.c
       touchables . This cause was taken up by                                                    om
       Mahatma Gandhi and the Congress                        During the post-Vedic period,
VOLUME        3,   ISSUE     2                                                                                        PAGE   21

                     Merits of the Joint Family System
           The family as a unit is an      lective religious ceremonies each      lips of their grandparents, and
 important and integral part of the        followed by a feast                    enlightening thrills they get by feel-
 Hindu lifestyle. Its role and signifi-     In times of economic strains,        ing the wrinkled fingers of the old
 cance in an individual‘s life are         mutual support is obligatory           folks. The bonds that develop among
 greater than many other cultures. The                                            cousins by living and growing to-
 strength of its fabric hold its various
                                            In case of illness, a member is      gether under one roof last a lifetime.
                                           attended to by so many caring and
 members close together with warmth
                                           concerned members
 and authority. The thoughts and ac-                                                        True, the joint family system
 tions, debates and decisions of the        Family problems ranging from         has its hardships and heartaches too.
 individuals are invariably in the arena   straying youth to widowed member,      In the wake of urban transformation,
 of, or with special reference to, the     are faced and shared together, and     it too is becoming outdated. How-
 family as a whole, however personal        Joys are doubled and grief made      ever, like many other features of tra-
 those thoughts, actions or decision       more bearable.                         dition and former practices, no matter
 may be. The family itself is a large,                                            how unsuitable and inappropriate
 growing entity, which at any given                 In addition, think of the     they may be in today‘s world, living
 instant, one can find a grand old man,    grandparents. The progenitors of the   under the joint family system does
 his several married sons with their       crowd are not left to rot in senior    have its charm and merits.
 wives, and a number of children. This     homes in the evening of their lives,
 conglomeration of individuals, with a     craving for attention and love; in-    Source: This article first appeared
 usually domineering gray-haired or        stead, until their last moment, they   in the July/August 1980 issue of the
 balding patriarch at the apex, is gen-    are surrounded by infants, middle      INDHER Journal. Its edited version
 erally known as a joint family.           aged and young, whom they can still    is being republished here with the
                                           order, advice, teach and play with.    consent of its publisher & Editor.
           To an outsider, it might ap-    The closing chapter of an individ-
 pear to a be stifling and over-           ual‘s life is
 powering system where the individ-        not only ren-
 ual is lost in the totality, where pri-   dered livable,
 vacy could suffer, and constant inter-    but      more
 ference may prevail. These are valid      meaningful
 fears, but think of the positive fea-     and satisfy-
 tures of the arrangement:                 ing.

    No child is ever left to wander or               One
 daydream without a companion              should      not
  No member, male or female,              underesti-
                                           mate        the
 ever ruminates in loneliness
  There is no need for babysitters        enrichment
  Every meal is a grand gathering         the little chil-
  The whole year is sprinkled with        dren derive
 ever so many celebrations-birthdays,      as they listen
 and anniversaries, in addition to col-    to      ancient
                                           tales from the

      Canadian Hindu Link is online now.
     Please visit our Website to get latest up-
      dates and to read our previous issues

                  Website :
PAGE    22

                                  Wealth - A Balanced Outlook
                 In the world we live in, It is    the cause of misery and envy.               pleasures. Secondly, when you give it
       true that wealth is power. To achieve                                                   to charity. Thirdly, when it is used
       success in undertaking in life we need      When and how conflict starts                neither of these two ways ,it is ulti-
       adequate wealth. In the field of charity                                                mately destroyed.
       and welfare, those who are committed                   Everyone does not have the
       to serve unselfishly cannot succeed if      ability to make wealth. Every person is     Running after pleasures does not
       they do not have wealth. Family, soci-      endowed with his own talents. Some          bring peace
       ety, welfare organizations and the          are gifted with brilliant brains, while
       State etc. also could not function with-    others may possess the ability to or-                 The basic needs of man must
       out                                         ganize and take on leadership. Some         be fulfilled, and his life must be one of
       the availability of necessary funds.        have the expertise in business and          peace and happiness. However, one
                                                   some can build and make things using        must be fully aware of what his basic
                 According to Vedic scrip-         their hands. However, those who work        needs are to live with dignity. The
       tures, It is the duty of the Merchant       hard and produce wealth should be           fulfillment of material wants and de-
       class [Vaishyas] to earn as much            given greatest encouragement for the        sires are so great that the more you get
       wealth as possible. Vaishyas are the        progress and prosperity of the country      the more you want. Running after ma-
       ones who take the initiative in the pro-    as a whole. However, the conflict           terial, sensual pleasures is limitless,
       duction and distribution of wealth.         arises when the principle of sharing        and one does not get peace in pursuit
       Persons involved in commerce, indus-        and caring is lost and greed and self-      of their fulfilment. According to
       try, agriculture and animal husbandry       ishness become the order of the day.        Manusmriti [2.94], ― That fire never
       etc. are all considered       Vaishyas.     Wealthy people who use their wealth         subsides when you keep pouring ghee
       Wealth is not an evil thing; it is a        only to fulfill their personal desires,     or oil into it, the flames become
       means to progress and prosperity.           while others are dying of hunger,           stronger. Similarly, the desires of the
       Wealth is power ! When our scriptures       cause conflict and other social upheav-     senses are never satisfied; they keep
       say, ―we should give up wealth‖ what        als, which give rise to class struggle.     on multiplying.‖ The desire to multi-
       they actually mean to convey is that                                                    ply wealth is also the same. The
       we should not earn wealth by sinful         Share Your Wealth                           hoarded money is seldom used for his
       means or spend it in lustful pursuits.                                                  needs? It only glorifies his ego and
       On the contrary, it exhorts us to spend              According to Gita, the one         shows off his wealth. In this process
       it judiciously for the well being of the    who fills his stomach while his             he never gets real peace and happi-
       family and welfare of the society .         neighbor goes to sleep hungry, has          ness. ―If you cover the whole world
                                                   eaten stolen food. The Rig Veda (10-        with gold coins, even with all that
       Sinful Money                                117-6) says,                                wealth, you would not get peace and
                                                                                               happiness‖, says sage Yajnavalkya in
                 To produce wealth is one          The rich man who does not utilize his       Brihad Aranyaka Upnishad [2-4-1-4].
       thing, but to be the real master of it is   wealth for noble deeds or does not
       altogether a different thing. To accu-      offer it for the use of fellow beings or              To summarize, Hindus are
       mulate wealth and spend it extrava-         fills his own stomach, is selfish and       enjoined upon to create wealth with
       gantly on oneself for the sake of           has earned the wages of sin only. It is     hard work and fair means, and to
       pleasure and merrymaking is to boost        undeniably true that the wealth of          share it with others by way of dona-
       one‘s pride and ego. Such wealth            such a person becomes meaningless           tions to charities that help less fortu-
       brings misery and unhappiness to soci-      and valueless if it is not shared with or   nate ones, and by supporting noble
       ety. When one becomes wealthy by            utilized for the good of less fortunate.    causes for the benefit of the society as
       dishonest and unfair means to enhance       That hoarded wealth eventually proves       a whole. That is the surest way to at-
       ones status and glory, such wealth is       to be the cause of his downfall and         tain real peace and happiness. Sharing
       sinful money, which will never give         ruin.                                       of your wealth with others is a social
       him peace and happiness. The Vedas                                                      responsibility, as it can also prevent
       say; Akshair ma Divyah krishimat            Three Outlets of wealth                     social conflicts and unrest in the soci-
       krishaswa, vitte ramasva bahumanya                                                      ety.
       manah meaning: Do not gamble. Earn                   Our scriptures say there are
       money by working hard and producing         three ways that drain off wealth from       Editors Note: This article is compiled
       crops in your field etc. and whatever       us. Dhanam bhogo Nashastisro Ga-            and edited by Ajit Adhopia from the
       you get be satisfied and contented with     tayoBhavanto Vittasya, yo na dadati         booklet Wealth- A balanced outlook
       it. For the contentment is the basis of     na bhunkte tasya tritiya gatir bhavati.     written by Pundit Nardev Vedalankar,
       happiness; greed on the other hand is       It means : first we spend on your own       published by Veda Niketan, Arya
                                                                                               Pratinidhi Sabha South Africa
VOLUME       3,   ISSUE      2                                                                                            PAGE    23

                      Hindu Woman Warriors, Queens
                          And Freedom Fighters
                                           By : Vishal Agarwal (Mennisota, USA)
           Women warriors are men-           the early 14th century CE but was         escape) and defended the fort for a
 tioned in the Vedic texts. Vispala, the     finally deposed by Shahmir in 1341        long time before surrendering. Im-
 wife of chief Khela was an aggres-          CE. Shahmir started the long lasting      pressed by her bravery, the British set
 sive warrior who lost her leg in a          Islamic rule in the region that, with     her
 battle. The Ashvins, celestial physi-       traumatic consequences on the Hindu       free.
 cians, gave her a metal prosthesis as a     population of the region. Kalhana‘s
 replacement for her lost leg.               Rajatarangini mentions several other      Rani Chennamma of Kittur[ (1778-
 Mudgalani drove the chariot of her          valiant Queens in pre-Muslim Kash-        1829)
 husband in a battle In the Mahab-           mir.
                                                                                                She received training in
 harata, Chitraangada, the wife of Ar-
                                                    When the ruler Dalpat Rai of       horse riding , sword fighting and
 juna, was an accomplished warrior in
                                             Gondwana died in 1548, Rani Durga-        archery in her young age. She was
 her own right. Carvings and statues
                                             vati became the regent Queen on be-       married to Raja Mullasarja of Kittur,
 in several ancient Hindu temples de-
                                             half of her infant son Bir Narayan        a princely state in Belgaum in Karna-
 pict women warriors. As examples,
                                             and ruled her kingdom ably for 16         taka. Her husband died in 1816. Her
 one may cite the Khajuraho temples
                                             years. The Moghul Emperor Akbar           only son died in 1824. Chennamma
 in Chattisgarh, or the remnants of the
                                             invaded her kingdom in 1564. She          adopted Shivalingappa as her son and
 Vishvanath Temple embedded in
                                             fought bravely and when defeat was        made him heir to the throne. The
 Aurangzeb‘s mosque in Varanasi.
                                             imminent, she chose to commit sui-        British did not accept this and or-
 When Lord Rama was asked to pro-
                                             cide by plunging a dagger into her-       dered the expulsion of Shivalingappa.
 ceed on fourteen years of banishment
                                             self. She may have lost her life in the   The Rani defied the order. A great
 from his kingdom, it was proposed
                                             battlefield but Akbar could not subju-    battle ensued. The Rani fought the
 that his wife, Devi Sita, could rule as
                                             gate her loyal subjects completely.       British with great courage and skill.
 the queen in his absence.
                                                                                       She could not, however, hold out for
 Queen Rudramba                                                                        long. She was taken captive and
                                                                                       lodged in Bailhongal Fort where she
           She was the only daughter         Rani Lakshmibai [Jhansi ki Rani]          died in early 1829.
 of the 6th King of the Kakatiya Dy-
                                                       The      legendary      Rani    Rani Avantibai
 nasty of Andhra Pradesh (13th cen-
                                             Lakshmibai of Jhansi fought bravely
 tury CE) and succeeded her father to
                                             against British invaders in 1857 and                When Vikramaditya Singh,
 his throne. Her father got her edu-
                                             died on the battlefield. She is consid-   the ruler of Ramgarh State died leav-
 cated fully in the affairs of the state
                                             ered the Joan of Arc of India and is      ing behind his wife Avantibai and no
 craft. She made a mark of bravery
                                             glorified in several Hindi ballads and    heir to the throne, the British put the
 while accompanying her father in the
                                             poems. The words ‗Khoob ladi mar-         state under court administration.
 latter's victory tours. Thinking her to
                                             daani, woh to Jhansi wali Rani thi‘       Avantibai vowed to win back her
 be a weak woman, the feudal lords
                                             from a poem in her honor written by       land from the British. She raised an
 and the area commanders revolted
                                             the poetess Subhadra Kumari Chau-         army of four thousand men and led it
 and neighboring rulers also found an
                                             han are known to every school-going       herself against the British in 1857. A
 occasion to grab her territory. But,
                                             student in the Hindi speaking areas of    fierce battle ensured and Avantibai
 Rudramamba defeated them all. She
                                             northern India. An associate of her‘s     fought most valiantly but could not
 married the Chalukya king Virab-
                                             named Jalkari Bai also distinguished      hold out for long against the superior
 hadra and they jointly ruled over the
                                             herself in the war of 1857. She was       strength of the British army. When
 Kakatiya kingdom very effectively
                                             credited with having killed a tiger       her defeat become imminent she
 for many decades.
                                             herself in her teenage years, and re-     killed herself with her own sword and
 The last Hindu ruler of Kashmir was         sembled Rani Lakshmibai very              became a martyr in March
 a woman Kota Rani, who was the              closely. When Lakshmibai‘s fort was       1858.
 widow of Hindu king Uddyana Deo.            about to fall to the British troops,
 She played a crucial role in warding        Jalkari Bai dressed up as Rani
                                             Lakshmibai (allowing the latter to                Several Hindu women were
 off the Tartar invasion of Kashmir in
                                                                                       also at the forefront of the Indian

                                                                                                              Continues on page 24…….
PAGE    24

             (Continued from page 23)

       freedom struggle in early 20th cen-       Muslim army occupied the temple           ishment. They could not be captured
       tury. Of them, the most notable was       precincts and put and an end to           for use as concubines, and could not
       Sarojini Naidu, often called the          Hindu worship. A temple courtesan,        be assaulted sexually by soldiers.
       ‗Nightingale of India‘ because of her     who fascinated the invading general,
       excellent poetry.                         prevailed upon him not to destroy the     Looking at the past achievements of
                                                 temple altogether, and restrict his       Hindu women, it is not surprising
       Women also played the role of spies.      vandalism to the destruction of a few     that the largest Hindu country namely
       Around 300 BC, Emperor Chandra-           cornices. The Brahmins in the sur-        India has had a Hindu woman as its
       gupta Maurya used a woman spy to          rounding areas tried to perform the
                                                                                           Prime Minister for 17 long years, and
       assassinate his rival King Parvataka.     sacred rituals whenever they could,
                                                                                           that women have presided over state
                                                 but were harassed by the occupying
                                                                                           governments in the larges states of
       The Avengers                              Muslim forces constantly. Unable to
                                                 bear the harassment of the devotees       India, UP and Tamilnadu. It may be
                 Several Hindu women             by the Muslims, she enticed the Mus-      noted that the Council and the As-
       avenged the dishonor to our Dharma        lim chief, took him up a temple tower     sembly are called the ‗two daughters
       and our country by employing clever       in the east, and in the pretext of        of God‘ in Hindu texts.
       strategy, if not arms. In the year 712,   showing him a famous icon from
       the Arab invader Muhammad bin             there, she pushed him down and            Editor’s Note: This article repre-
       Qasim invaded the outlying Indian         killed him. Scared that she will be       sents an edited, short version of a
       province of Sindh (now in Pakistan),      tortured by the Muslims as a result of    longer article, which is available on
       killed its last Hindu ruler Raja Dahir,   her deed, she hurled herself also         his website
       and sent Dahir‘s daughters to Bagh-       down and died. According to tradi-        www.vishalagarwal.voiceofdharma.
       dad as a gift to the Caliph. The          tion, to honor her memory, the fu-        org
       daughters told the Caliph that Qasim      neral pyres of temple courtesans were
       had already ravished them before          lit by fire brought from the temple       The Author lives with his wife and 2
       sending them as a gift to him. Infuri-    kitchen.[29]                              children in Minnesota. He has been
       ated by this apparent insult, the Ca-               To finance the defense of       studying Hindu scriptures and an-
       liph had Qasim put to death, only to      their motherland from the invasions       cient Indian history since his teen-
       learn that the Princesses of Sindh had    of the Turk Muslim ruler Mahmud           age years and has created one of the
       lied to him to avenge their father‘s      Ghaznavi, Hindu women in what is          largest digital collections of Hindu
       death. The two Princesses were tor-       now Pakistan willingly donated all        scriptures in the world. He has a
       tured to death.                           their jewellery.                          dozen publications as journal arti-
                                                                                           cles and book chapters. Vishal also
                In the early 14th century,                It is relevant here to recall    helped the local Hindu temple start
       Ulugh Khan, a Muslim military gen-        some rules of Hindu warfare that are      a Sunday religious school as well as
       eral invaded the Vaishnava holy tem-      enjoined in texts such as Manusmriti      a teenager club in the last 2
       ple town of Shrirangam. He massa-         and Mahabharata. Women in general         years. He serves on the Board of the
       cred several monks, desecrated the        were considered inviolable, and were      World Association for Vedic Studies.
       temple and looted its treasury. The       generally exempt from capital pun-

                          Questions and Answers on Hinduism
                                                          By : Ajit Adhopia
       1. What is the Hindu viewpoint on         prohibited by Hindu scriptures. Hindu-    marriages that are free of pre-marital
       Human sexuality?                          ism neither condones nor condemns         and extra-marital sex seldom end in
                                                 birth control, sterilization, polygamy,   separation or divorce. Hindu parents
                The purpose of sexual union      homosexuality or masturbation. The        strongly advise their children to value
       of husband and wife is to express and     only rigid rule is wisdom, guided by      and preserve their chastity as a sacred
       nurture their intimate love for each      virtue and tradition.                     treasure for their spouse.
       other, which draws them together for
       procreation. Hinduism does not dictate             Hindu traditions and wisdom      2. People in the Western world hear a
       any specific code for sexual behaviour,   demand that the intimacies of sexual      lot about the Hindu caste system.
       except that adultery and abortion         intercourse remain within the confines    How did it come about?
       (except to save a mother‘s life) are      of married life. Hindus believe that
VOLUME        3,   ISSUE       2                                                                                             PAGE   25

           When the ancient Western          shrined in the Vedas, the Hindu scrip-      prescribe a dress code?
 world was in the primary stage of           tures. Logical scrutiny, open discus-
 socio-economic development, the Hin-        sion and investigation of Hindu beliefs     No. However, many Hindus prefer to
 dus in India had evolved into a highly      is not only permitted in Hinduism, but      wear traditional attire when visiting a
 civilized society. In order to ensure       also encouraged and welcomed. Every         temple, performing or attending a reli-
 social order, the ancient social scien-     Hindu has the freedom to question or        gious ceremony.
 tists classified Hindus into four occu-     challenge his or her beliefs and prac-
 pational groups: those who imparted         tices, without any fear of reprisal or      7. Can a non-Hindu enter a Hindu
 knowledge and pursued religious or          accusation of blasphemy. Hindus are         temple?
 intellectual work were called Brah-         very proud of this ancient tradition.
 mins; rulers, administrators and sol-                                                             Yes, a non-Hindu may enter a
 diers were known as Kshatriyas; mer-        4. How does Hinduism view religious         Hindu temple. Hindu temples are open
 chants, farmers and industrialists were     conversion?                                 to people of all religions. However,
 called Vaishyas; labourers and artisans                                                 devotees and guests are required to
 were called Shudras. This social                       Tolerance towards other          follow the same rules. Shoes must be
 framework, called Varna Vyavasth,           faiths is the corner stone of Hinduism.     removed at the entrance. Smoking is
 meaning classification system, had          It does not claim to be the only path to    not allowed. One must not be under
 nothing to do with one's birth, race,       God. "All religions are equal", declare     the influence of drugs or alcohol.
 colour, creed or economic status. Ac-       Hindu scriptures. Despite theological
 cording to Hindu scriptures, all four       differences, all religions have the same    8. Is there a central authority in India
 Varnas are equal and must work in           goal- to uplift the human soul and          to whom all Hindu temples in the
 unison for the welfare of the whole         guide it to the source of its origin.       world are accountable?
 society.                                    Therefore, they see no sense in encour-
                                             aging and promoting religious conver-                No, there is not. Hindu tem-
          Unfortunately, the four Var-       sion. Hindus are often critical of prose-   ples are independent and community-
 nas degenerated into countless castes,      lytizing, foreign, missionaries who         based. They are built with public dona-
 called Jatis, based on occupations.         covertly prey on poor people in third       tions, and are run by democratically
 Every Hindu belonged to a Jati, which       world countries. They feel that using       elected management bodies
 can be compared to the trade guilds in      material aid to lure poor people of
 Europe. Each Jati developed its own         other religions to conversion is an un-     Editor’s Note: This is the last
 social norms and customs. The caste         ethical practice.
                                                                                         segment of the Questions and An-
 system became very rigid, exclusive
                                                                                         swers on Hinduism series that repre-
 and hereditary. It was not possible for     5. How can a non-Hindu become a             sents excerpts from the booklet Hin-
 a member to switch over to another          Hindu?
                                                                                         duism: Myths & Reality by Ajit Ad-
 caste. Inter-caste marriages were not
                                                                                         hopia [1995]. This booklet is not cur-
 allowed and each caste had its own                    Anyone who voluntarily ac-
                                                                                         rently available, but it may be repub-
 deity. The upper castes with money          cepts Hindu beliefs and philosophy of
                                                                                         lished in the near future.
 and power exploited the weaker castes       life can consider himself or herself a
 to the extent that a perfectly practical    Hindu. It is not mandatory to be for-
 social order became a curse for Hindu       mally initiated into
 society.                                    Hinduism, to adopt
                                             a Hindu name, nor
           Over the ages, many Hindu         to become a mem-
 saints and social reformers started ag-     ber of a Hindu tem-
 gressive movements to abolish the           ple. However, some
 caste hierarchy. With the spread of         anti-conversion
 education, modern influence and the         Hindu organizations
 correct interpretation of the Scriptures,   do require a Shuddi
 the caste system is fading away. Most       or purification cere-
 Hindus who have settled outside India       mony in order to
 no longer practise it.                      reconvert       those
                                             Hindus who had
 3. Are Hindus allowed to criticize          taken another relig-
 their religion?                             ion for any reason,
                                             and wish to come
         The freedom to express one's        back to Hindu fold.
 thoughts and propagate them is en-          6. Does Hinduism
PAGE    26

                         Communication Gap with Children
       Dads look worse off when it comes        example, 64% of those from Ma-           in the same role on matters relating to
       to communicating with their kids.        harashtra and the southern states per-   taking a job and hardly did so on
       Only 7% of boys and 4% of girls          ceived disapproval from both parents     menstrual problems.
       (aged 15-24) have been found to dis-     if opposite sex friends came home,
       cuss "growing up" issues with their      compared to considerably more (71-                  Matters pertaining to boy-
       dad in a recently-concluded youth        80%) in northern states. Correspond-     girl relationships, in contrast, were
       survey. Moms were equally bad            ing percentages among young women        rarely confided in parents, the most
       when it came to their sons with only     were 74-85% and 82-97%, respec-          likely confidants being peers (46%).
       6% boys confiding and "discussing        tively.
       life" with them. In comparison, girls                                                       Patterns among young men
       (77%) spoke more freely to their                   The survey found that par-     were different. As far as the non-
       mothers, mostly about issues relating    ents were most likely to disapprove      sensitive issue of taking a job is con-
       to menstruation.                         of love marriages for their children,    cerned, the leading confidant was
                                                as reported by 84% of young men          their father, cited by 39% of young
                The survey, conducted by        and 94% of young women.                  men.
       International Institute for Population             With regard to perceived
       Sciences and Population Council and      parental reactions to a love marriage,             Parents were rarely cited as
       endorsed by the Union health minis-      state-wise differences were evident      key confidants (2%) by young men
       try, spoke to nearly 51,000 married      for young men, with those from           on such issues as anxiety about noc-
       and unmarried young males and fe-        southern states considerably less        turnal emission or boy-girl relation-
       males from six states -- Andhra          likely than those from other states to   ships, for which most young men
       Pradesh, Bihar, Jharkhand, Ma-           perceive disapproval (67-78% versus      reported peers as their leading confi-
       harashtra, Rajasthan and Tamil Nadu.     85-94%).

                The survey found that                     Among young women, in
       school performance, a non-sensitive      contrast, state-wise differences were
       topic, was the most common area of
       discussion between kids and parents.
                                                negligible; over 90% of young
                                                women in all the states reported pa-
                                                                                            Good News for
       In contrast, more touchy topics, such
       as romantic relationships and repro-
                                                rental disapproval of a love marriage.
                                                Almost all those who were inter-
                                                                                             Our Readers
       duction, were rarely discussed with      viewed had an arranged marriage.         Subscribe & Get Your Copy
       either parent (only 2% of young men      This led to only 30% of young men                 by Mail
       and 6% of young women did so).           and 22% of young women being                    This quarterly magazine is
       When it came to reproductive issues,     aware of what to expect from their       available free from temples in the
       children were equally secretive with     married life                             416 & 905 area. Many readers do
       both their parents.                                .                                   not visit their local temple
                                                          Friends, rather than family,        regularly. They do not find a
                 The findings also suggest      were found to be the major confi-
                                                                                         copy there when they visit. Many
       that parents controlled the social in-   dants for both young men and
                                                                                            readers live outside the 416 &
       teractions of youngsters, particularly   women. Only 1% of men were found
       those involving members of the op-       to confide in their family members
                                                                                           905 areas. Although the Cana-
       posite sex. For example, 69% of          while 85% did so in their friends. In     dian Hindu Link is available on
       young men and 84% of young               case of women, 20% confided in                        our website
       women expected parental disapproval      family and 46% in friends. Persons
       if they brought home a friend of the     People with whom youth would most              Those prefer to read a paper
       opposite sex. In contrast, just 9% of    likely discuss personal matters varied      copy. They can now get their
       men and 5% of women reported that        considerably by the sex of the re-          copy in the mail regularly by
       their mother and father would be an-     spondent and the type of topic.            sending us an annual subscrip-
       gry if they brought same sex friends                                              tion of $10.00 by cheque, to cover
       home.                                              Young women tended to              the mailing cost, payable to
                                                consider their mother as their leading         InderLekh Publications,
               Differences were evident         confidante on two matters: those re-               2546 Pollard Drive,
       with regard to parental disapproval if   lating to taking a job (38%) and men-                Mississauga, ON
       a youngster brought opposite sex         strual problems (72%); fewer young                        L5C 3H1
       friends home. Among young men, for       women (28%) considered their father
VOLUME         3,    ISSUE   2                                                                                             PAGE   27

                                          Reader’s Feedback
            I read your articles in Canadian Hindu Link, which came out January 2011. I find great messages in those arti-
 cles. I really appreciate the efforts you and the Canadian Hindu Link people put together to bring out such a great infor-
 mative magazine. I just want to point out an error in the article, Please don't think I am criticizing your work, I am forty
 year old with the father of 2 boys. Even I myself learned something from the article about Pongal. So I am not here
 to criticize the writer Mr. Gopalakrishnan.

           It is a little mistake or you must have over looked it. In the article about Pongal, you mentioned how people in
 different parts of India celebrate Pongal, including Tamil style (even Pongal itself is a Tamil word), but you never men-
 tioned anywhere about Tamils. This creates some confusion to the younger kids those who don't know anything about
 Indian Cultures, We are struggling to teach them about our culture while they study about Canadian Culture. These kinds
 of magazines help us to talk to them about us. I thought I should mention to you so that it doesn't happen in the future.


 Alan G Ellalan

          We continue to find your magazine full of educational and interesting articles. The format is easy to read and
 appeals to all age ranges. Our family looks forward to reading each article. Attached is our donation cheque.

 With best wishes

 Anjali Sharma

          The views and opinions Expressed in this publication are those of the writers, and
            not necessarily those of the Management of the journal Canadian Hindu Link

                    Canadian Hindu Link                                        Acknowledgements
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                                 Mississauga, Ontario, L5C 3H1             Manmohan Anand : Distribution- Halton Region
     Tel. & Fax                  905-273-9563                               & Hamilton
     E-mail                                 Arun Gawri : Distribution Brampton
                                                                           Rajesh Gupta : Distribution Cambridge/Guelph
                                                                           Avinash Agnihotri : Copy Editing
VOLUME        3,   ISSUE    2                                                                                     PAGE      28

                                                                     Floradale Medical Pharmacy
                          Diwali is a distortion of the                        Live strong         Live Healthy
                      Sanskrit word ‗Deepavali‘ meaning                     Compounding Pharmacy
                      row or cluster of lights. This most
                                                                              Free Home Delivery

                                                                         We waive $2.00 co-payment
                                                                          All Drug Plans Accepted
                                                                           Amit Shah, Pharmacist

                                                                              2444 Hurontario Street
                                                                             Mississauga, ON L5B 2V1
                                                                             [South of Dundas@ Floradale]
                                                                                 Tel. 905-279-1773
                                                                                 Fax 905-279-1725

  Are You

            Starting a new business
            Buying a business
            Expanding your business
            Looking for change

 Contact for free consultation

                           MBA, CGA
                                                   18 + Years
      PH.: 905-232-8510                           Of Canadian

Manual & Computerized Accounting
Financial Statements
Software Training & Accounting System Set-Up
Personal & Corporate Tax returns and Planning
Business Plans & Cash Flows
GST, PST, WSIB and Payroll Returns
Business Registrations and Incorporation
Business Loans & Consulting
Financial Planning and Investments

    20 Kingsbridge Garden Circle, Suite 2007
     (Northwest Corner of 403 & Hwy. 10),
             Mississauga ON L5R 3K7
      Ph. : 905-232-8510 Fax : 905-232-8410
       Printed by: Millenium Printing 139, basaltic Road, Concord, ON L4K 1G4, Tel. 905-760-5522 Toll Free 1-800-731-4674

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