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Friends Event: Tasmai Shri Gurave Namaha - the idea of the Guru in Hinduism

Saturday, 1 October 2016 -
6:30pm to 9:00pm

A talk by Tushar Shah of the Oxford Centre for Hindu Studies

Hinduism pays great reverence to gurus as spiritual instructors,  guardians,  role-models,  counsellors,  mediators, and even embodiments of the divine. In this talk, we will explore how the notion of the guru has developed throughout history. Then, by looking at various case studies, we will discuss what role modern gurus play today in the development of Hinduism as well in people’s lives.

Book launch: Swaminarayan Hinduism

What started as a small religious community and reform movement in 19th century northwestern India is now one of the fastest growing devotional (bhakti) Hindu communities in the world. The story of the Swaminarayan community's growth is one of literary and performative innovation, colonial interaction, and architectural revolution. This edited volume presents perspectives on this popular religious community's growth and cultural adaptation over the past two centuries.

Appointment of Prof. John Brockington as Interim Academic Director

The OCHS is delighted to announce the appointment of Professor John Brockington as the Interim Academic Director of the Oxford Centre for Hindu Studies for the year 2016–17.

Professor Brockington is an Oxonian belonging (Corpus Christi College, 1959–65) with a BA (1963), MA (1966) and D.Phil (1968) from the University.

Professor Brockington is a renowned Sanskritist who has authored and edited several books and nearly one hundred articles, mainly on the Sanskrit epics and the history of Hinduism. He has also lectured and presented in conferences around the world. His key books include The

OCHS Approved as UN NGO

At a meeting in New York City on 28 April 2016, the Oxford Centre for Hindu Studies was approved as an NGO (Non-governmental organisation) associated with the United Nations Department of Public Information (UN DPI).

The approval was granted by UN DPI as the OCHS is engaged in activities aligned to the aims and objectives of the United Nations. This new status allows the OCHS to be a formal partner for sharing of news and information about UN activities.

Friends Event: Life as Balancing Act

Birmingham Friends Event
Saturday, 21 May 2016 -
7:00pm to 9:00pm

This talk looks to the Upanis​h​ads, Mahabharata,and the Puranas for help in striking the balance between the paths of pravritti (world-embracing) and nivritti (world renouncing) in day​-to​-day life. ​​In other words how can we live whole-heartedly in the world yet not be completely of the world.

Friends Event: Life as Balancing Act

Leicester Friends Event
Saturday, 7 May 2016 -
6:30pm to 9:00pm

A talk by Anuradha Dooney of the Oxford Centre for Hindu Studies

This talk looks to the Upanis​h​ads, Mahabharata,and the Puranas for help in striking the balance between the paths of pravritti (world-embracing) and nivritti (world renouncing) in day​-to​-day life. ​​In other words how can we live whole-heartedly in the world yet not be completely of the world.

Friends Event: The Boomerang Effect: Karma, Causation, and Rebirth

Birmingham Friends Event
Saturday, 23 July 2016 -
7:00pm to 9:00pm

A talk by Dr Ramesh Pattni of the Oxford Centre for Hindu Studies

A major concept that distinguishes Indian philosophy from European philosophy is karma. Karma can be regarded as the application of the law of cause and effect – that all actions have consequences that will affect the doer of the action. So stated, it might seem that the law of karma is nothing other than the law of universal causation, according to which every action or event is caused. Clearly the two laws are related, though the precise nature of this relationship needs reflection.

Friends Event: Hindu Approaches to Childhood

Birmingham Friends Event
Saturday, 19 March 2016 -
7:00pm to 9:00pm

A talk by Brainerd prince of the Oxford Centre for Hindu Studies

With the global effort to protect the rights of children, have we lost a healthy understanding of the role of the family as the centre of a child's social structure? How can Hindu approaches to children and particularly their relationship to parents offer a corrective to other modern notions – is there a Hindu contribution to the current debate on child rights?

Friends Event: How can Hindus Engage with Other Religious Traditions?

Leicester Friends Event
Saturday, 2 April 2016 -
6:30pm to 9:00pm

A talk by Dr Brainerd Prince of the Oxford Centre for Hindu Studies

We live in religiously diverse societies. One way to gain recognition and create space is to resort to name calling, violence, and conflict. But Hindu communities have always lived with diversity. So, how can contemporary Hindus engage with other religious traditions even as they strive to hold their own in our multicultural societies.

Friends Event: The Boomerang Effect: Karma, Causation, and Rebirth

Leicester Friends Event
Saturday, 2 July 2016 -
6:30pm to 9:00pm

A talk by Dr Ramesh Pattni of the Oxford Centre for Hindu Studies

A major concept that distinguishes Indian philosophy from European philosophy is karma. Karma can be regarded as the application of the law of cause and effect – that all actions have consequences that will affect the doer of the action. So stated, it might seem that the law of karma is nothing other than the law of universal causation, according to which every action or event is caused. Clearly the two laws are related, though the precise nature of this relationship needs reflection.

Friends Event: Living with Diversity Today

Leicester Friends Event
Saturday, 6 February 2016 -
6:30pm to 9:00pm

Rev Tom Wilson, Director of St Philips Centre, and Shaunaka Rishi Das of the Oxford Centre for Hindu Studies

A public conversation to explore the issues and promote an open discussion. Leicester is one of the most diverse cities in Britain. How could people with such different cultural, religious, and culinary habits ever be truly British? Can British people really support Indian cricket? Three generations later and we ask similar questions of Eastern Europeans, Russians, and Somalians. How deep is our multiculturalism? Where does diversity start? What are the barriers?

OCHS Academic Director leaves for Singapore

Prof. Gavin Flood, the Academic Director of the Oxford Centre for Hindu Studies is leaving Oxford to take up a chair in Comparative Religion at the National University of Singapore after more than ten years invaluable service at the heart of Hindu Studies in Oxford.

While at the OCHS he was Consulting Editor of the Journal of Hindu Studies and produced three books: The Truth Within: A History of Inwardness in Christianity, Hinduism, and Buddhism; The Bhagavad Gita: A New Translation; and The Importance Of Religion: Meaning In Our Strange World. His earlier work, Introduction to Hinduism,