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Hinduism In The Uk?

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Hinduism In The Uk?
#1
Hi, this possibly qualifies as the unlikeliest of all possible conversions - but I have recently become fascinated by the entire world of Indian culture, religion and music. (By recently I mean probably over the last 18 months or so). Indeed the more I learn, the more fascinated and engrossed I become.

I was originally drawn into the subject by a guy I met on the street who was a practitioner of the Hare Krishna faith - who was handing out some leaflets. The craziest thing was these 'leaflets' had nothing on them except some incredibly colourful and beautiful artwork. He didn't ask me for anything and all he said was that he hoped I would have a nice day.

Well anyway, maybe it was psychology - but it worked. I became intrigued. Not so much about the Hare Krishna religion - but about what the image was about and why this small incident seemed so significant.

From then on I found out more about the image - and this led me to reading more about Indian art - and also as a result of this, about Indian Hindu gods - and from there I moved on to Indian reverential music - popular dance, literature and so on - and - well, I guess the story is a pretty familiar one to many of you from there on.

The only slight departure is that I seem to have come to this a little late in my life (I'm 41), at a time when I'm certain I really should probably be concerning myself with more serious matters.

At this stage however I am at a point where I am very much interested in finding out more about the Hindu religion.

The difficulty is that I have done enough reading about it - and I want if I can to take it to the next level and physically talk to and meet members of the Hindu faith.

Right now I feel very lost and alone - and am drifting without direction, because I have literally no one I can speak to about my interest. I know no-one who knows anything about Hinduism - and I am concerned that right now all of this is something that exists purely in my head.

I would very much like to change this if I can and meet and speak with other members of the Hindu religion.

I am not saying that I am quite ready yet to fully convert to Hinduism - but I do feel that I am at least ready to begin to attempt to move in that direction - providing I can have appropriate support and guidance.

I am also interested in meeting and speaking with other novices, or people who have recently converted to the Hindu religion - but again I have no idea where to start?

I feel one can only go so far in a spiritual journey by reading books and posting messages on forums such as these - and that it is important that such and interest should have some kind of physical manifestation, preferably in the form of being able to meet with and speak to other similarly interested people.

Can anyone here please help?

If it is of any help to know this, I live in Newcastle upon Tyne in the North East of England in the UK.
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#2
jebus197 first off all good to know that you are interested, secondly "Hinduism" if you can call it that is not just about some physical "conversion", people don't need to formally dunk themselves in water and proclaim themselves a believer or anything like that, now coming to your question about meeting people who are at a similar position as you, you can certainly do so at a local temple, i am in Canada, so I am not really that aware of things in UK, but I do know that organizations like chinmaya mission have many people who may be of non Indian origin and "converted" or just plain interested in Sanatana Dharma.

I suggest to you though to check out:

www.hinduvoice.co.uk

It has Hindus from all over UK, if u post ur questions in the discussion section there you may get ur answers because most of them also live in UK.

I am sure if any forum members are from UK here, they will certainly answer ur questions, and I am pretty sure there are Chinmaya branches or other organizations in Newcastle, just need to find out.

Meanwhile here is a website of someone with a similar bent of mind (I don't know this person except that he is from US and is keenly interested in Eastern religions and philosophy, particularly in Advaita):

http://www.sunyaprajna.com/

This is his pics from his trip to India:

http://travel.sunyaprajna.com/India/

I suggest that u stick around on the forum, even if it may take u some time to meet someone in real life (because most of us here are in North America or India), it would still be fruitful to know people online to discuss things with.

And good luck in ur quest.
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#3
Jebus:

Welcome..

As a first approximation, you are a hindu if you sincerely disown the "my way or the highway" religions (ie "follow my religion/messiah or go to hell" type religions).

Google Koenraad Elst, David Frawley, Frank Morales to see how other westerners have immersed themselves in Hinduism. These 3 have a lot of stuff on th web.

Sanatan dharma ("the eternal way"), now called Hinduism, is an unchanging, easily grasped set of natural law in its basic form. Like "animals suffer, therefore dont kill them". (The degree to which you follow these laws is up to you, but the laws stay unchanged, and you dont become un-hindu because you dont follow all the laws).

The world at large only gives the moniker "religion" to clubs which have formed around a "God" who has given out artificial laws ("you can kill certain animals and not other" --yeah, the others don't feel pain).

Read more and more about Sanatan Dharma (read this forum--the Hinduism part; and keep reading the links herein), and *apply* what you have read to your life. And you will become a better Hindu than most Hindus out there, who dont seem to care about Dharma. Application makes a Hindu. Money, speeches, or killing "unbelievers" don't...(like some religions I know)

Good luck!
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