Hinduism summit highlights value of self knowledge

Temple priests at Hinduism Summit

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With hundreds in attendance from the Greater Toronto area at the Hinduism Summit held recently in the Hindu Heritage Center in Mississauga, speakers highlighted the importance of inner self knowledge, in addition to the basis of Hindu concepts, emphasizing the importance of maintaining a Hindu identity in Canada and addressing issues such as the denigration of Hinduism and genocide of Hindus. 

Organized by the Hindu Heritage Center and Forum for Hindu Awakening, the commencement ceremony started in a traditional Hindu way, with blowing of a conch, Vedic recitations and the speakers lighting a wick oil lamp. 

Acharya Vivek of Chinmaya Mission in Niagara, the main speaker at the summit, spoke on “maintaining a Hindu identity in Canada,” explaining that to be a Hindu, external things like wearing a vermillion mark on the forehead or following a Hindu dress code are not needed. “Only if you know who you are, will you know what (you have) to do!” the Acharya emphasized.

During the presentations, Hindu activist and avid reader of the Hindu Janajagruti Samiti website, Yogesh Gandre warned about the adverse impact of denigration that the majority of people are unaware of. He appealed, “Do not condone the spiritual pollution caused by denigration in the name of freedom of expression, just as you do not condone noise or air pollution!”

Bhavna Shinde Hurley, spokesperson for the Forum for Hindu Awakening, concluded the presentations with the topic, “Understanding, living and preserving Hinduism.” Highlighting that being a Hindu is the attitude of being predominantly sattva (spiritual purity), Bhavna urged the audience to offer some time daily towards learning about issues faced by Hindus, and to do some saadhana daily for greater success in overcoming the issues. (IATNS)

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