YOUNG  SINDHI  ADULTS

Connect • Learn • Share

 

SESSIONS AT PREVIOUS RETREATS - RELIGION:


The story of Jhulelal and the Behrano

Jhulelal (literal translation, the swinging child) is a prominent figure within the Sindhi community’s religious heritage. This presentation will include the telling of the story of Jhulelal, how he emerged from water (thus being referred to as the Water God) and what he stood for. On his birthday, Cheti Chand (also celebrated as the Sindhi New Year), the Behrano Saheb is offered - learn the ingredients and the process involved.  Bhajans are sung in celebration of the New Year, the most famous being Lal Muhinjee Pat, an English translation of which will be included in this presentation. Presented by Minar Ajwani and Dimple Jethani


Satyanarayan Kathaa Pooja

It just so happens that Sunday May 26th is Full Moon, or Satnarain. There is a traditional prayer performed on every full moon, called the Satyanarayan Kathaa. Come learn it, why we do it, and taste some delicious churi as prasad.


The Sindhi - Sikh Connection & Other Frequently Asked Questions

Ever wonder why the Sindhi community has such an affinity for Guru Nanak and the Sikh religion? Ever scratch your head at the resemblance between Guru Nanak and Jhulelal? Ever question why we do what we do? We’ll have some answers for you!


Memorializing the Sindh: Text, Image, and Persona on the Indus –

This session will address the complexities of memorialization in the Sindh through a close analysis of three persons, three texts, and three images, all associated with three tombs on the banks of the Indus. Dr. Derryl MacLean is Associate Professor in the Department of History at Simon Fraser University.  A social historian of religion, he is the author of Religion and Society in Arab Sind (Leiden, 1989) and La Sociologie de l'Engagement Politique: Le Mahdawiya indien et l'Etat (Paris, 2002).  He retains fond memories of his youth in Sindh.


The Evolution of Religious Thought in Sindh

The abiding Vendantic beliefs and spiritual symbols that are manifest in Sindhi Sufi poetry and popular culture have ancient roots.  Some yogic postures and religious practices can be traced back to Moenjodaro.  According to folklore, many of the Vedas were written on the banks of Indus.  Accounts from the time of Alexander’s invasion show that Sindhis in those days were pantheists and many practiced mysticism.  Subsequently, Buddhist, Jain and Bhagti schools flourished in Sindh. After the Arab invasion, rationalists, atheists, and other religious dissidents from Islamic countries found asylum in Sindh.  Even as their forms of religious expression assimilated various influences, Sindhis have maintained a continuity of values through the millennia.  Dr. Gul Agha traces the history and evolution of beliefs and practices in Sindh—from the earliest celebrations of Sindhi religious festivals such as Ddiyaarii (the Fall festival of lights) and Chettii chanDru (New Year), the rituals of Daryaa panthii and Laalu paanthii, to the more recent movements such as Nanika panthii and Aryaa Samajii; and will also describe some observations about the spiritual attitudes and values of Sindhis and their role in shaping Sindhi culture. Presented by Dr. Gul Agha, a Professor of Computer Science and a faculty affiliate in the South Asian and Middle-Eastern Studies program at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Dr. Agha's late father was a poet from Shikarpur and his mother is a physician born in Hyderabad, Sindh.  As a child, he lived in both cities.  Dr. Agha has also traveled extensively in Sindh, written numerous short essays about Sindh and lectured at many Sindhi gatherings about the history and culture of Sindh, including several International Sindhi Sammelans, Sindhi Association of North America (SANA) Annual Meetings, World Sindhi Institute conferences, as well as at literary meetings at Sachal's anniversary in Daraza, Sindh.  He was Guest of Honor at the millennial Sindhi New Year (Cheti Chand) celebration organized by the Bharti Sindhu Sabha in Thane (Mumbai, India).  He has a particular passion for classical Sindhi music and poetry, and for promotion of animal rights and environmentalism.


Singularity in Body, Mind & Soul – GM is Born!

Toronto's Sindhis started coming together in the 80’s with the organization of religious activities, which lead to the formation of the Sindhi Cultural Association of Toronto (S.C.A.T.) in 1990. Today, S.C.A.T.'s membership consists of nearly 500 families. Over the course of time, many in the community expressed a desire to have their own place for worship and community activities. The persistence and dedication of a handful has turned this dream into a reality. Join those who have defined the term “social responsibility” as they detail the path from inspiration to creation of the GurMandir.  More than anything, help us celebrate their success!!


The Temple Experience – Journey of Faith or a Journey Unkown?

Many of us have grown up going to the temple with our parents.  We know to take off our shoes before entering and in many cases, we know we need to cover our heads, and often wear a tilak/bindi on the forehead.  We know we need to stand while we perform aarti, and we know that we can't leave until we've eaten prasaad.  We accept these and many other rituals to be common practice, and years later, we continue to abide by them. But does our generation understand the true significance of these practices, or do we perform them because this is what we've seen done by our parents and grandparents?  How much of the temple experience do we really understand?  Can we refer to blindly following rituals as faith? Join us for aarti on Sunday morning, when we'll focus on learning the significance of some of these practices as specified in the scriptures of Sanatana Dharma (commonly known as Hindu Scriptures) - the Vedas, Upanishads, Puranas, Smritis and the two Itihasas.


Satyanarayan Katha

A tradition in Sindhi homes, Satyanarayan Katha is an auspicious prayer we’ve all grown up with. Most of us have attended more than one – but do we know what it means? What does it have to do with the full moon and why are we vegetarian on this day? Join us as we examine its historical context, its significance to our community, prepare for and perform a Satyanarayan Katha.


Being Sindhi Outside Sindh: The Development Of Sindhi Hindu Religious Practices Around The Globe

Sindhi Hindus have migrated around the world, particularly since Partition forced many to flee their homeland.  For some Sindhis, maintaining a distinctive Sindhi identity involves particular practices, specifically - religious ones, that they associate with their homeland.  In this presentation, we will explore some of the various ways that Sindhi Hindus have recreated the religious practices of Sindh in different environments, in India and elsewhere.  Our investigation will include discussions of community practices and the creation of temples, gurdwaras and other centers as well as individual practices.  The discussion will illustrate the variety of ways Sindhi Hindus participate in the construction of their heritage, particularly the religious component of their heritage. Dr. Steven Ramey is an Assistant Professor of Religious Studies at the University of Alabama who specializes in contemporary religions of India.  He earned a Ph.D. from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where his research focused on contemporary constructions of Sindhi Hindu identities and practices.  He has published his research as Hindu, Sufi, or Sikh:  Contested Practices and Identifications of Sindhi Hindus in India and Beyond (Palgrave Macmillan 2008).


Can Hindus Worship Guru Nanak? The Religious Identity Of Sindhi Hindus And Their Relation To Sikhism.

Many Sindhi Hindus continue family traditions of honoring Guru Nanak and the Guru Granth Sahib, but this devotion creates a tension over religious identity, as some Sindhi Hindus and most non-Sindhis associate Guru Nanak and the Guru Granth Sahib with Sikhism, not Hinduism.  In this discussion, we will explore the relationship between Sindhi Hindus and Guru Nanak and consider the ways Sindhi Hindus defend their Hindu identity while following Guru Nanak.  The conversation will also address alternative ways of conceiving of religions and religious identity that open additional possibilities for describing the relationship of Sindhis and Sikhism. Dr. Steven Ramey is an Assistant Professor of Religious Studies at the University of Alabama who specializes in contemporary religions of India.  He earned a Ph.D. from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where his research focused on contemporary constructions of Sindhi Hindu identities and practices.  He has published his research as Hindu, Sufi, or Sikh:  Contested Practices and Identifications of Sindhi Hindus in India and Beyond (Palgrave Macmillan 2008).


Jhulelal And The Behrano

Our patron saint, Jhulelal (literally translated, the swinging child) is a prominent figure within the Sindhi community’s religious heritage. This session will share the story of Jhulelal and his emergence from water, thus being referred to as the Water God. His birthday, Cheti Chand, is celebrated as the Sindhi New Year, and the Behrano Saheb is offered – we’ll share the procedure and its significance, and you’ll get to partake in one. Bhajans are sung in celebration of the New Year, the most famous being Lal Muhinjee Pat, an English translation of which will be included in this presentation.

This was the first session presented at Retreat I, and this encore presentation is part of our Retreat X commemoration activities.


Saraswati Pooja

In Hinduism, Saraswati is the goddess of knowledge, music and the arts. She is the consort of Brahma. Saraswati is considered to be the "mother of the Vedas". The name Saraswati came from "saras" (meaning "flow") and "wati" (meaning "a woman"). So, Saraswati, the symbol of knowledge - its flow (or growth) is like a river and knowledge is supremely alluring, like a beautiful woman. Saraswati is in the trinity of Maha Kali, Maha Lakshmi and Maha Saraswati. In the Rigveda, Saraswati is a river as well as its personification as a goddess. In the post-Vedic age, she began to lose her status as a river goddess and became increasingly associated with literature, arts, music, etc. In Hinduism, Saraswati represents intelligence, consciousness, cosmic knowledge, creativity, education, enlightenment, music, the arts, eloquence and power. Hindus worship her not only for "secular knowledge", but also for "divine knowledge" essential to achieve “Moksha”. Please join us as we commemorate ten years of learning and celebrating our heritage by paying homage to this beautiful Goddess and ask for her continued blessings and enlightenment.


From Womb To Tomb

They say "Life is all about the journey, not the destination." Do you know the 16 milestones in a Hindu's spiritual journey? What are they and what are the rituals and prayers associated with them? In this session, Pandit Eshwarlal Sharma takes us on an epic journey that explores the many rituals and rites of passage for Sindhi Hindus, from womb to tomb, or in our case, to the soul passing on to the afterlife. This is sure to enlighten the soul and awaken the spirit!


Vedic Astrology – A Gift From India

There are many systems of astrology emanating from such diverse cultures as the Babylonians, Chinese, Egyptians, Greeks, Mayans and Hindus. All have developed extensive astrological systems. Jyotish astrology springs forth from the ancient Vedas of India, and is reportedly thousands of years old. Vedic astrology originally comes to us from the Rig Veda, the oldest of the four Vedas, the spiritual Bible of ancient India. The Vedas were an oral tradition passed down from family to family, generation to generation. These works contain the spiritual teachings of Hinduism.  Much later in their history the Vedas were put in a written form, and so it is with Jyotisha as well. We also find astrological references abound in the great oral Epics of India, the Mahabharata and the Ramayana, particularly in the most famous portion of the Mahabharata, the Bhagavad-Gita. In the last decade there has been a resurgence of Vedic Astrology in the United States and the rest of the “Western world”. Join us as we explore the intricacies of Vedic Astrology as presented by our very own Pandit Eshwarlal Sharma.

  1. YSA

  2. About YSA

  3. Mission

  4. Initiatives

  5. Retreat & NYE

  6. Downloads

  7. Platforms

  8. Join YSA


  1. SINDHIS

  2. Our Heritage

  3. Our Community


  1. CONTACT US