Hindu Council condemns terrorist attack in Pulwama India

“Hindu council of Australia joins the international community in strongly condemning yesterday’s Pulwama terrorist attack on CRPF Jawans in the Indian state of Jammu & Kashmir where more than 40 soldiers lost their lives. We send our heartfelt condolences to the families of the martyrs who laid their lives for serving their motherland. 
 
The entire Hindu community of Australia stands shoulder to shoulder with the families of the brave martyrs and we pray to God to give Sadgati to the departed souls and we wish a speedy recovery of the injured solders.”
 
Prakash Mehta 
National President 
HIndu Council of Australia

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‘Fake news’ against India in Australia a matter of concern, says Hindu Council chief

‘Fake news’ against India in Australia a matter of concern, says Prakash Mehta, President Hindu Council of Australia.

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Aranmore school getting its own Hindu priestly advice to justify Nose Stud fiasco

@arancc #hinduism #nosepiercing @hinducouncilau

A young Hindu year 10 student has been asked not to come to school wearing a Hindu religious symbol, a nose stud, as it is against school policy.

Parents of the girl explained to the school that the nose stud is not a fashion item but a spiritual icon. Hindu Council of Australia has also approached the school and explained that the nose stud is a religious item.

Despite being advised by the Hindu Council of Australia and by the parents, the school is now, it seems, shopping around for a Hindu priest to advise them on the nose stud and its relevance to Hindu/Indian culture.

This is strange.

Hindu Council of Australia is a federation of Hindu temples and Hindu organizations all over Australia. It has members in every state of Australia. Hindu Council of Australia is recognized by state and federal governments to advise it on Hindu issues very much like the government depends on Churches to advise it on Christian religious issues. Hindu Council also advises Australian governments  on Hindu marriage rituals etc.

For a christian school to ignore the advise of a Hindu parent and then the advice of peak Hindu body like Hindu Council of Australia and to embark on its own journey to find a priest to interpret Hinduism for the school when the school stand is well known, is like shopping around for a favorable opinion. It is not appropriate for a religion to start interpreting the doctrine, ritual or practices of another religion. It will not help religious harmony and certainly does not make multicultural Australia very proud.

How would Christians feel if a Hindu school in order to justify its interpretation of Christianity, which is at odd with the Christian Churches, shops around for a Christian priest or a scholar to justify what it wants Christianity to be. Such a thing would not be acceptable and what the school is doing should not be either. We can not accept Aranmore school to determine what is and what is not essential to Hinduism. Off course, Hindus will never try to tell Christians as to what is or is not a Christian practice. It will accept whatever Christians say as final in this matter.

The school has not been open about its policy, if there is one, on allowing religious symbols worn by its non-christian students. The school has not made its stand clear as to what will it do if its shopping exercise does not produce the results it wants. Will it accept the student back or will it still continue to throw the extensive and unpublished rule book at its non-christian students.

There is a need for a uniform policy on how faith based schools would treat students of other faiths in their school. For the sake of a cohesive strong Australia, that all of us want, we should allow students of different cultures, beliefs, backgrounds and faiths to mingle together in schools. We should not create island of faith based schools where students of one particular faiths grow insulated from beliefs that belong to “other”. All faith schools should have an open and not restrictive policy that raises the bar for people of “other” faith to study with them.

Hindu Council of Australia calls upon Catholic Archbishops and Catholic education organizations to

(1) not to interpret what is essential to other faiths and

(2) have school policies that pass the test of encouraging a mix of faiths in their schools rather than uniformity.

Off course, Hindu Council accepts that all faith based schools, including Christian schools, should be free to teach their own interpretation of their faith.

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Hindu Council writes to Archbishop of Perth about Nose Stud

Hindu Council of Australia writes to the Principal of Aranmore Catholic College and Archbishop Perth to recognize Nose Piercing and Bindi as acceptable Hindu religious symbols in Catholic schools.

Hindu Council has expressed its willingness to work with the school and others to resolve the issue resulting from ignorance i.e. lack of knowledge about Hindu icons. It is ready to work with Catholic organizations to help Catholic schools to become more friendly to non-christian students of Hindu faith studying in their schools.

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Meditation industry in USA alone is worth more than a billion dollars

Meditation industry in USA alone is worth more than a billion dollars- shouldn’t India get some royalty for inventing this technique asks Vijai Singhal of Hindu Council of Australia?

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Hindu Council to take up Nose Piercing restriction with Catholic establishment

By: Surinder Jain.

Hindu Council of Australia has taken up the issue of a Hindu student being kicked out of a Catholic school for a religious nose piercing with Catholic Educational establishment. According to Hindu Council’s multi-faith director, the recent misunderstanding among Catholic schools about Hindu culture and traditions has a potential of affecting the harmony between our communities in Australia and the reputation of Catholic schools among Indians.

Hindu Council believes that it is simply an issue of Catholics being unaware of Hindu traditions and that it can be easily resolved by making Catholic school teachers aware of Hindu sensitivities.
 
Hindu Council of Australia is keen on taking up the general issue of Catholic schools permitting religious symbols of non-christian students in their schools. It is understood that all Catholic schools permit Sikh students to wear turbans and similar exemptions exist for some other religions also. Hindu Council would like to explain that nose piercing is not a fashion or rebellion statement of a teenager but is a deep rooted cultural and religious ritual for girls going through puberty.
 
In Hindu culture, a girl who achieved menarche, or her first period, is feted, and pampered at a ceremony where family and close friends gather and lavish gifts on her. The girl would be bathed in fragrant water after applying oil, turmeric etc. she would be bedecked in fine clothes, flowers and ornaments – and her feet would be washed. This is because Hinduism celebrates, and does not abhor menstruation. The Shakti philosophy upholds it as a gift which is responsible for creation of life. Nose piercing of the girl and placing a metal stud is a ritual that is invariably accompanied. As is true of any cultural or religious tradition, most Hindu parents want to and do observe these rituals very sincerely.
 
Hindu Council of Australia, has asked Catholic establishment to meet a Hindu Council delegation. Hindu Council would like to discuss the issue of Nose Piercing by young girls with the Catholic hierarchy so that the information can be disseminated by them to all catholic schools in Australia.

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Hindu Council celebrates Holi on 24th March with Cumberland

Hindu Council of Australia with Cumberland Council invites you to celebrate Holi, festival of colours on 24th March 2019.

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Learn Sri Bhagwadgita via Whatsapp tele-bridged sessions by JET

By: Sai Paravastu.

Jeeyar Education Trust (JET) is organising tele-bridged sessions to learn Sri Bhagwadgita
 
 
Collaboration will be via WhatsApp. Please spread this message to anyone Interested to learn. No age limit and no fees. 
Please take advantage of this program which is starting this week for next 35 weeks. More information will be provided upon joining the group.

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Winner of the Gargi Woman 2019 Awards are …..

Hindu Council of Australia awards Gargi Woman Award to outstanding women in Australia who make a good role model for growing up Hindu girls and women. The award consists of a commendation letter and is awarded in multiple categories.

On International Women’s Day the winners will be announced for 2019 Gargi Woman Award. Please join us in celebrating the achievements of these outstanding women.

Date : 9th March 2019 – 5pm to 8:30pm

Venue :  Grevillea Room , Wentworthville Community Hub

Come and join an evening filled with great events – Award ceremony, Guest presentation, cultural events and dinner.

THIS IS A PRIVATE INVITE ONLY EVENT

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Victorian chapter distributes Hindu Chaplaincy Kit

By: Makarand Bhagwat, Melbourne.

Hindu Council of Australia’s Victoria chapter has completed distribution of kits to 11 accredited Hindu Spiritual Care Providers (Chaplains). The kit contains a lanyard and ID, a copy of Bhagvad Geeta, Rudraksh Mala, and a neck scarf.

HCA Victoria is currently looking for volunteers who can be trained as Spiritual Care Providers especially from linguistically diverse backgrounds. We encourage interested persons speaking Gujarati, Bengali, Punjabi, Telugu, Tamil, Kannada and Malyalam languages to send their expression of interest to melbourne@hinducouncil.com.au with your contact details.
 
A training session is proposed in April 2019 for volunteers.

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