Exhibition on Hinduism

S. V. Subrahmanian svsubrahmanian at YAHOO.COM
Sat Nov 10 06:02:38 CST 2001

There is an exhibition which I am planning to visit sometime in American Museum
of Natural History in NY.

The theme of the exhibition is,

Meeting God : Elements of Hindu Devotion.

Their website carries a lot of information about the exhibition.  People who
can't make it can see it in the website.  The URL is,


I received the following review forwarded by one of my friends:

Visit "Meeting God: Elements of Hindu Devotion", the exhibition by Stephen
Huyler at the American Museum of Natural History. Most of the visitors were
regular Americans (non Indians). It was a refreshing experience in the heart
of New York City's prime location just opposite Central Park.

- Outside the museum, in the entrance-hall and all over the museum,
there were huge banners, displays and pamphlets advertising this
unique exhibition.

- It was like one of the best crash course on Hinduism and its
philosophy of monotheism.

- It had four different video documentaries depicting various aspects
of Puja, offerings and other ceremonies. First was about Ganga-Snaan
with melodious flute music of Raga ShivaRanjani, the second was based
on some interviews of various Hindu families in Washington DC metro
area with Sanskrit chanting in the background and others were about
ceremonies in a NY temple and about Chennai procession. (Most of the
visitors were enjoying the music of the second video!)

- Nowhere they mentioned the word "idol", but rather used the words
like image/icon/statue worship or directly Murty-Puja, which was
quite encouraging.

- They have explained in great detail the significance of Fire, Water
and other Puja material like Haldi etc.

- At least half a dozen models of actual house-shrines were
interactively displayed. You can get a glimpse inside these Ghar-
Mandirs from a typical Hindu family.

- It also had almost a dozen photos of Hindu/Jain and Sikh families
in the NY/NJ area performing various Pujas in their homes and temples.

- One of the prime attractions was a huge Banyan (or Peepal) tree
model depicting the Hindu deities and other holy colorful marks.

- There were totally 75 pictures taken from various parts of India.


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