Harmony News: Buddhist monk from India promotes Hindu conference in New Zealand

The 3rd New Zealand Hindu Conference will be held on 15th & 16th May 2010 at the Hindu Heritage Centre, Mangere, Auckland. The theme of the conference is “Sustaining New Zealand through strengthening bond amongst communities”.

The focus of this conference is networking, whether it is with Maori community, general public, government agencies, Hindus from various countries, the different schools of thought of Dharma, with Hindu organisations, associations and institutions.

Ven. Dr. Bhikkhu Bodhipala, a well respected teacher of Vipassana (Buddhist Meditation) who belongs to Theravada tradition from India, is in New Zealand promoting the 3rd New Zealand Hindu conference. He has been visiting Buddhist monasteries and meditation centres around major cities and promoting meditation techniques and Hindu conference.

Ven. Dr. Bhikkhu Bodhipala was awarded a Ph. D. by the Madurai Kamaraj University for his research on Vipassana meditation. He has penned many books and articles both in Tamil and English. He has given programmes on TV about Reiki & Tibetan Yoga. His book entitled “Buddhist Physics” earned worldwide reputation for him. He is conversant in five languages – Tamil, English, Sinhalese, Hindi and Pali.

He has initiated more than 6000 people in Vipassana, Reiki & Tibetan Yoga within a span of 10 years in India and abroad. Presently he is deeply engaged in teaching Buddhist Meditation.

Although born as a Protestant Christian, Ven. Dr. Bhikkhu Bodhipala embraced Buddhism in 1977 under the preceptorship of (Late) Ven. E. Nandiswara Nayaka Thera, the then Secretary General of Maha Bodhi Society of India, Kolkata. After his retirement from Government service he was ordained a Bhikkhu under the preceptorship of Ven.Dr.Rastrapala Maha Thera, internationally reputed teacher of Buddhist Meditation.

 “I was influenced by the teachings of Swami Vivekananda and Paramahansa Yogananda, and then came in contact with Buddhist teachers” ” said Ven Dr Bhikkhu Bodhipala.

In addition to performing a Buddhist prayer at the opening ceremony at the 3rd New Zealand Hindu Conference, Ven Dr Bodhipala will present a paper at the conference.

“All Bharatiya Dharma have the same root and we are all children of same mother. I am here to support and promote the conference and help develop understanding with various Dharma groups” said Ven Dr Bodhipala.

Mr Joris De Bres (Race Relations Commissioner, Human Rights Commission), Dr Rajen Prasad (ex- Chief Commissioner of the Families Commission and currently a Member of Parliament), Mr Kanwaljit Singh Bakshi (Member of Parliamentarian), Mr Pravin Patel (well known community leader) will chair some of the conference sessions. A number of Government agencies and NGOs are participating in the conference

“We are happy the way conference organisation is going. Response to registration request by general public, interest by businesses/ services to advertise through the conference souvenir and interest shown by various dharma groups to participate in the conference has been very encouraging so far” said Ms Pritika Sharma, conference coordinator.

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