KLANG, MALAYSIA, April 28, 2017 (Malaysian Digest): The Sri Sundararaja Perumal Temple, which is the first Hindu temple in Malaysia to be built from granite blocks, will be consecrated in a historic ceremony expected to draw over 100,000 worshippers on Sunday. Temple president S. Ananda Krishna said the temple underwent a US$2.3 million reconstruction and renovation works which took eight years.
"The ceremony this Sunday is seen as symbolic as it marks the start of the temple as a tourist attraction for Klang and Malaysia," he told reporters here. Ananda Krishna said the temple is unique as the fine carvings on the granite slabs were specially designed by skilled craftsmen from India. The Klang Sundararaja Perumal Temple, originally built in 1890, is among the oldest Vaishnavite temple in Southeast Asia and the first temple in the country to receive the ISO 9001:2008 certification for efficient administration.
BANGLADESH, April 28, 2017 (Dhaka Tribune): A sharp spike in attacks, particularly on religious minorities and foreigners, in recent months in Bangladesh has heightened the sense of fear among different religious groups in the country, says a report of the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF). The attacks on religious minorities, particularly the Hindus, were either claimed by extremist groups - Jama'atul Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB), Ansar al-Islam, and Islamic State - or were attributed to them.
The USCIRF made a number of recommendations to the US including providing technical assistance and encourage Bangladesh to further develop its national counter-terrorism strategy. It also suggests urging Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and government officials to "frequently and publicly denounce religiously divisive language and acts of religiously motivated violence and harassment."
UNITED STATES, April 28, 2017 (Good Housekeeping): When it's 3 a.m. and your baby won't stop crying, having little tips and tricks on hand can, if anything, help you feel more prepared. Daniel Eisenman, a motivational speaker and a new dad, has officially mastered the latest in baby-soothing hacks. While broadcasting to his followers live on Facebook, Eisenman's daughter, Divina, began to cry -- Eisenman was holding the newborn in bed and, like a pro, seemed unfazed by her wails. Hardly breaking his sentence, he looked into his daughter's face and let out a loud and steady "om," a sacred Hindu and Buddhist chant. About three seconds into her dad's "om," Divina stopped crying and went to sleep-- just like that.
Watch adorable video at "source" above.
Come apart from the clever argumentation of contending theology and, for a brief while, look inward. That one look shall drive the nail into the coffin of birth and forever end its cycle recurring.
-- Tirumantiram 1631
SINGAPORE, April 27, 2017 (Straits Times by Annabeth Leow): Singapore is a tapestry of languages, each with its unique syntax and history. Some are endangered while others are thriving. In the latest instalment of a weekly series, we look at Sanskrit. Dating back at least 3,000 years, the Sanskrit language has shaped numerous modern cultures in South East Asia - from Cambodia and Laos, to Malaysia and Indonesia. Even this country's very name, Singapore, derives from a Sanskrit word: "Sinhapura", or lion city. And "merdeka", the rallying call when the Republic gained independence, has roots in the language.
But modern students and experts of Sanskrit, which hails from what is now South Asia, are few and far between in Singapore. Over the past few years, a small clutch of lay enthusiasts and university academics have taken it upon themselves to fan the flames of interest in Sanskrit. The Ramakrishna Mission, a spiritual organisation headquartered in Bartley Road, has held weekly Sanskrit lessons for more than 40 years, said president and monk Vimokshananda, 69. Dr Srinivasa Malladi, who coordinates Sanskrit study at the Ramakrishna Mission in Singapore, hopes to have about 100 fluent speakers here within the next few years.