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                 Social Issues, Customs & Traditions      

Hindu Wedding: Bride & groom take seven vows as they take Seven rounds around a small
fire pot. Divine elements of fire & light represent the presence of God at this auspicious occasion.








Peace Mantra is invoked at ALL auspicious occasions.

                    Sarvesham Swastir bhavatu             (Children United in Prayer)











            By - Pankaj Jain, PHD, Asstt. Professor, Philosophy & Religion, Univ. of North Texas                                      

        By - Jeffery D. Long, PHD, Professor of Religion and Asian Studies, Elizabethtown College, PA

               Social Issues covered in the article:

  1) Life: How do Hindus address the issue of abortion: When does life begin?  How do Hindus respond to such questions as protection of the mother            vs. the  unborn fetus, abortion in cases of rape or incest, etc?

  2) Death: How do Hindus view the death penalty, and under what conditions?

  3) End of Life issues: How do Hindus view end of life, assisted suicide, death with dignity, freedom to choose to end life when doctors have given up and                      prolonging life means prolonging unbearable pain? Also removal of life support and so forth?

  4) Family Values: What notions of "pro-family" values do Hindu culture and traditions support or oppose?

  5) Gay Marriage: Hindu social/religious/traditional views regarding gays in society and the definition of marriage?

  6) Separation of Church and State: What might constitute an appropriate role for the church in government programs (such as feeding the poor, etc.)

                   and in education/classrooms, etc?


Edited by Adarsh Deepak, Ph.D. Dharma Association of North America (DANAM), Poquoson, Virginia
and Rita Dasgupta Sherma, Ph.D. Binghamton University, New York, and Berghoffer Institute, New York

This volume contains the proceedings of the session on �Dying, Death, and Afterlife in Dharma Traditions and Western Religions� at the Third Dharma Association of North America (DANAM) Conference, held at the site of the American Association of Religion (AAR) Annual Meeting, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA, 18�20 November 2005. Over 100 participants from universities and nonprofit institutions in the USA, Canada, UK, Belgium, Egypt and India attended the conference. Complete texts of the four papers presented in the session are included in this volume. ISBN:  978-0-937194-51-5, 116 pages

For centuries, protecting nature has been a way of life for Hindus,

the only lifestyle based on Dharma and ethics. No country in the world

has as many festivals to worship the Mother Nature as India has.

We salute the sun every morning; because we know it well that

if he were absent nothing would have been created on Planet Earth,

including gods and prophets. 

       By: Professors O.P. Dwivedi & Christopher Key Chapple

       Foreword by Dr. Karan Singh




 India Abroad - August 14, 2014

A new multi-disciplinary report, by the University of Chicago’s International Human Rights Clinic, the

National Asian Pacific American Women’s Forum, and Advancing New Standards in

Reproductive Health, says Asian Americans do not prefer boys.












How Love Emerges in Arranged Marriages –
Two Cross-cultural Studies

by Epstein, R., Pandit, M., & Thakar, M. (2012)

(Journal of Comparative Family Studies, 44(3), 341-360.)


Background & Research

Despite the prevalence of autonomous (“love”) marriages in “Western” countries, most marriages in the world are still arranged by parents or matchmakers. Quite a number of studies have been conducted comparing and contrasting arranged marriages and autonomous marriages. Such studies have arrived at somewhat mixed results as regards love and (marital) satisfaction in these two types of marriages. However, overall, most of the evidence suggests that there is at least as much love (later on) in arranged marriages as in autonomous ones, and that love in such marriages grows over time as opposed to autonomous marriages where it tends to diminish over time. Similarly, satisfaction seems to be at the same level or better in arranged marriages as in autonomous ones.

To read the detailed study, click here

By Prof Veena Talwar Oldenberg - Professor of History at Baruch College and the

Graduate Center of the City University of New York. Published by Oxford University Press.

   The Hindu custom of dowry has long been blamed for the murder of wives and female infants in India.

In this highly provocative book, Veena Oldenburg argues that these killings are neither about dowry nor an Indian culture or caste system that encourages violence against women. Rather, such killings can be traced directly to the influences of the British colonial era and the resulting legislation.


In the precolonial period, dowry, an institution managed by women to enable them to establish their independence, ws a safety net. As a consequence of the massive economic and social upheaval brought on by British rule, however, women's control of the system diminished and the safety net was twisted into a deadly noose.... Combining rigorous research with impassioned analysis and a nuanced treatyment of a complex, deeply controversial subject, this book critiques colonial policy while holding a mirror to gender discrimination in modern India.




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