12th December 2010
Our respectful greetings to our esteemed Directors, Officers, members, friends and all of our readers. Since the last Newsletter in September quite a few things have happened.
Locally, in Tennessee, NIOS participated again in the annual International Festival in Nashville, Tennessee, which draws thousands of guests. Besides it’s every popular booth and stage presentations, this year included as participation in the first International Festival Parade. NIOS organized a sample of the traditional Rathayatra festival from India’s Jagannatha Puri.
Even though very exotic to the culture of Tennessee, the local participants responded with heart-warming participation in music and dancing.
Plans are underway for the Annual NIOS Symposium on Cultivation of the Human Spirit with contact being made by Hanumatpresaka Swami and Rabbi Rami Shapiro with the Department of Philosophy of Middle Tennessee University, Murfeesboro, to co-sponsor the intellectual part of the event.
Traveling again to South America Hanumatpresaka Swami participated in the planned week long symposium on Classical Indian Literature with the Peruvian National Education University, La Cantuta. The academic lectures were inaugurated by Professor Miguel Polo, former head of the department of philosophy at San Marcos University. Along with the University of Mexico, San Marcos is the oldest university in the Western hemisphere. The Dean, Department-head and many faculties at La Cantuta were so pleased that they vigorously pushed to confirm more accredited programs in literature and also philosophy, art and music. Furthermore, they have asked NIOS to submit a formal proposal for co-operative development of accredited course.
At San Marcos directly there was a two hour lecture on introduction to Indian philosophy, and extensive planning for the third NIOS movie with Oscar Natars. The movie is almost ready and will be presented at a premier 7th January in the esteemed Ccura Wasi cultural center in Lima, Peru. The program is being co-sponsored by the cultural unit of our own Ricardo Palma University and is expected to attract leading artists, directors, actors to appreciate its theme of A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami, the Person Bhagavata.
An informal agreement has been made to publish in Spanish a 150 page extract of Dr. Samaresha Bandopadhyay’s book on Indian history and culture with our “forefathers”, IECOO, the Institute for Oriental and Occidental Classical Studies, at Ricardo Palma University. After the book is published NIOS would hope to arrange a very effective tour for the Professor in South America. We are also investigating co-publishing the entire book in English with the Oxford Centre for Hindu Studies.
Professor Graham Sweig from the University of Virginia has agreed to develop an introduction to Sanskrit grammar based upon the NIOS favorite classic, Srila Rupa Goswami’s Upadesamrta.
Our very systematic study of these Indian classical literatures, Bhakti-sastri and Bhakti-vaibhava, in co-ordination with V.E.D.A.S., Peru is finishing its first cycle of two years with final testing scheduled for January 15th 2011. About 80 students world-wide are expected to sit for the examination for the Bhakti-sastri title. Then, based upon extensive discussions with the Mayapura Institute in Bengal, the Vaisnava Academy of Dhanvantari Swami in Brazil and others NIOS is expected to participate in the first cycle of the Bhakti-vaibhava certificate starting March 2011. This will last for four years and will study the first six cantos of the Srimad Bhagavatam as its core literature.
As you can see many things are happening.
The final publication of papers for the 2010 Annual Symposium is in the archives. Hanumatpresaka Swami will be in South America and Europe until March 1st but then we hope that he will be able to work locally in Nashville until the middle of June.
Please contact us with your advice and help. There is so much very, very good work that can be done.
For further details contact secretary at