College of the Humanities dreams of Centre for Hindu Studies

College of the Humanities dreams of Centre for Hindu Studies

Carleton University’s College of the Humanities has embarked on a mission to establish a Centre for Hindu Studies within the religion program.

According to Farhang Rajaee, director of the college, a centre focused on Hindu studies would not only benefit the university and academics, but Hindus as well. “The centre would provide a permanent presence for matters related to this important and rich tradition. Hopefully it would serve as a focal point for enhancing understanding between our secular society and the Hindu community,” says Rajaee. He adds that the centre would of course be an academic enterprise for creating opportunity to present a scholarly interpretation of this religion.

Although the college will one day house the centre, Rajaee takes no recognition for the initiative. He credits Dr. Harsha Dehejia-a local medical doctor and adjunct research professor-who, for many years, has dreamed of creating a Centre for Hindu Studies in Ottawa. Dehejia was so determined he began raising money himself and has amassed nearly $100,000 for what’s known as the Hindu Fund of the Religion Program.

They may have only reached a small milestone on their $1 million journey, but Rajaee is dreaming big. When asked when he hopes the centre will open, Rajaee remarks, “I hope to do it tomorrow, or yesterday, or the day before! The sooner the better.”

The College of the Humanities is hosting an inaugural function to celebrate the support the Hindu Fund of the Religion Program has received from community members and organizations. The event will feature a lecture by professor Rajmohan Gandhi, grandson of Mahatma Gandhi and Rama Vaidyanathan, and a live performance by a noted Bharatanatyan dancer from India. The function will be held in the Grand Hall of the Canadian Museum of Civilization on Saturday, October 11, 2008 from 2:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. All are welcome. Please RSVP at

The event is being held in partnership with the Shastri Indo-Canadian Institute, which is celebrating its 40th anniversary

One Comment

  1. Commenter Avatar rossi
    Posted January 3, 2010 at 3:58 pm | Permalink

    I am so sad to see this now!!!! I wish I would have seen it befor so I can go!!! So is there a center on Hindu stufies??? I really want to study this….and I live in Ottawa!

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