The January/February/March 2013 issue of Hinduism's flagship magazine is a special issue. In addition to all your favorite departments and the usual wide range of articles, this issue honors the 150th birthday of Swami Vivekananda.
Happy 150th, Swami!
Born on January 12, 1863, Swami Vivekananda drove Hinduism into the forefront of world consciousness and left a legacy that remains unequaled. His life was short, just 39 years, yet the currents he set in motion continue to gain breadth and momentum. Swami ignited a new pride among Hindus, planted the seeds of future Hindu communities abroad, founded a yoga order that burgeons today and helped kindle India's all-important independence from Britain. Going into and well beyond his life, the article explores his ideas and his impact on world thinkers and writers, including Huston Smith, Aldous Huxley and William James. It ends with Swami's writings exploring the "Ideal of Universal Religion."
Back in the 90s the Texas Medical Association asked our editors to help write a book entitled Faith of Our Patients. In this book the five major US religions present their ethical view of some 33 issues, from blood transfusion to suicide, from Do-Not-Recusitate orders to pain control and heroic life-extension efforts. We wrote the Hindu section of that book, and drew from it to give you this article, which includes 25 of these issues, then adds six pages of related health-care issues from the Health Care Providers' Handbook on Hindu Patients, written by an Australian team. It's a tour-de-force on Hindu medical insight and culture.
Do the Four Ashramas Have Meaning in this Millennium?
Our publisher, Satguru Bodhinatha Veylanswami, poses that question. In response, he adapts our venerable traditions to our life in this modern world. Explaining each of life's four stages, he shows how mankind has evolved beyond some of the old ways of thinking. He suggests ways of changing our ideas about these stages so we may progress with dignity and increasing purpose as the decades roll by.
Our editor-in-chief writes eloquently about the meaning of "Namaste," and in the process explores the subtle differences of East and West. If ever you wanted to know why we don't shake hands, here it is.
It's true, we certainly immersed ourselves in health matters this time. Our editors prepared an in-depth, five-page article exploding the myths surrounding humanity's looming health threat, diabetes, and its major source, obesity. Learn the real story behind sugars and fat. Studies are clear that Indians are particularly susceptible to diabetes. This article makes some cogent recommendations that can keep you healthy throughout life.
Those Thorny Issues
When our editors visited San Jose, California, for the annual Hindu Mandir Executives' Conference, they were toe to toe with some of Hinduism's most articulate swamis and swaminis. Naturally, they turned on the iPhone recorder and asked four of our spiritual leaders four tough questions. Learn what each said when asked about avoiding the word Hindu, mixed-religious marriages, the special challenges facing American Hindus and what to do about our youth.
You may have heard of the Bauls, those transient poets, dancers and singers who live only to praise the Divine. Did you know they are alive and well and traversing the planet? They are taking their off-beat ways and words beyond their homes in Bengal and Kerala and onto the stage, both abroad and on the Internet. Find out how they are trained and initiated, and peek into their unusual lives.
And There Is More
Other major articles include Arvind Sharma's thoughtful exploration of the Hindu view of time, a Kerala swami's focus on reaching the youth, one girl's award-winning essay on how she can be both American AND Hindu, and a UK scientist's reflections on spirituality and quantum physics.
As usual, our Global Dharma digest tells you what's happening around the world in the Hindu family, Quotes & Quips offers a humor-rich respite from the mean old world and Digital Dharma gives you the scoop on how technology is being used to support Hinduism. With stunning photos and in-depth articles, you don't want to miss this issue!