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22.11.10

http://www.historyforkids.org/learn/india/religion/pictures/Rig-Veda.jpgCatholic University Leuven (Belgium), oldest existing Catholic university in the world founded in 1425, is offering Hinduism classes in English and Dutch.
These Hinduism courses will acquaint students with Veda, Bhagavad-Gita, Upanishads, epics and Puranas, tantric and bhakti traditions, concept of salvation, philosophical traditions, etc. On the oral exam, students are supposed to be able to explain cited Sanskrit terms. It is included in Master of Theology and Religious Studies and some other programs.
Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, founded by Pope Martin V, has about 37000 students from all over the world and offers 120 postgraduate academic programs with revenue of about $890 million. Mark Waer is the Rector.
Prominent Hindu statesman Rajan Zed, in a statement in Nevada (USA) today, described Catholic University's action as "a step in the right direction".
Zed, who is president of Universal Society of Hinduism, argued that religion was a complex element of our lives and religion comprises much more than one's own individual experience or specific tradition. God, as a sign of God's munificence and benevolence, constructively wished presence of different faiths.
Rajan Zed urged the schools/departments of religion of other major world universities to strengthen their Hinduism sections. Hinduism being the oldest religion with rich philosophical thought and a vast array of scriptures needed more exploration. Zed especially asked the Harvard, Cambridge, Yale, Princeton, Oxford, Stanford, Columbia, McGill, Australian National, Tokyo, Copenhagen, Heidelberg, Uppsala, and Utrecht universities to further enrich their Hinduism resources.
Prominent Hindu statesman Rajan Zed has asked Belgium to recognize Hinduism.
Belgian government reportedly accords "recognized" status to Catholicism, Protestantism (including evangelicals and Pentecostals), Anglicanism, Orthodox (Greek and Russian) Christianity, secular humanist groups, Islam, and Judaism. Representative bodies for these religious groups receive subsidies from the federal, regional, and local governments. In 2010, government paid about $127 million to recognized religious groups.
Zed, who is President of Universal Society of Hinduism, in a statement in Nevada (USA) today, said that there was need to reform the way religious groups were recognized and financed in Belgium. Hinduism was the oldest and third largest religion of the world with about one billion adherents and a rich philosophical thought. What else Belgium wanted to fulfill its criteria of recognizing Hinduism? All it needed to do was to open a standard book on world religions and most of its doubts would be cleared.
As religious or "moral" instruction was reportedly mandatory in public schools and teachers were provided for recognized religious groups only, it was hindering Hindu children from learning about their own religion, Rajan Zed argued.
Zed urged leaders and organizations of various religions active in Belgium to push for recognition of Hinduism as we were all co-travelers looking for the truth and headed in the same direction.
According to recently issued "International Religious Freedom Report 2010" on Belgium by US Department of State: "...conditions in Belgium were not optimal for groups regarded as "sects" or "cults"...government officials continued to have the authority to monitor religious groups...reports of societal abuses and discrimination based on religious affiliation, belief, or ractice continued... sectarian organizations can be investigated... Jewish and Muslim groups reported incidents of discrimination, as did religious groups that had not been accorded official recognition by the government...227 complaints of religious discrimination were received in 2008..."
According to reports, about 60 percent of Belgium's population identifies itself as Roman Catholic, four percent as Muslim, two percent as Protestant, one percent as Jewish, two percent as belonging to other religious groups, and 31 percent as nonbelievers. There are about 7,000 Hindus.

Catholic University Leuven (Belgium), oldest existing Catholic university in the world founded in 1425, is offering Hinduism classes in English and Dutch.
These Hinduism courses will acquaint students with Veda, Bhagavad-Gita, Upanishads, epics and Puranas, tantric and bhakti traditions, concept of salvation, philosophical traditions, etc. On the oral exam, students are supposed to be able to explain cited Sanskrit terms. It is included in Master of Theology and Religious Studies and some other programs.
Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, founded by Pope Martin V, has about 37000 students from all over the world and offers 120 postgraduate academic programs with revenue of about $890 million. Mark Waer is the Rector.
Prominent Hindu statesman Rajan Zed, in a statement in Nevada (USA) today, described Catholic University's action as "a step in the right direction".
Zed, who is president of Universal Society of Hinduism, argued that religion was a complex element of our lives and religion comprises much more than one's own individual experience or specific tradition. God, as a sign of God's munificence and benevolence, constructively wished presence of different faiths.
Rajan Zed urged the schools/departments of religion of other major world universities to strengthen their Hinduism sections. Hinduism being the oldest religion with rich philosophical thought and a vast array of scriptures needed more exploration. Zed especially asked the Harvard, Cambridge, Yale, Princeton, Oxford, Stanford, Columbia, McGill, Australian National, Tokyo, Copenhagen, Heidelberg, Uppsala, and Utrecht universities to further enrich their Hinduism resources.

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