SNDP to reinforce spirituality among people  

 In an attempt to counter the ignorance about the faith among the people and religious conversions, the SNDP Yogam is looking to rectify the issue.

Published: 05th August 2017 01:30 AM  |   Last Updated: 05th August 2017 11:23 AM   |  A+A-

Express News Service

KOCHI: In an attempt to counter the ignorance about the faith among the people and religious conversions, the SNDP Yogam is looking to rectify the issue.The SNDP, one of the largest religious organisations in the state, is set to revise and bring uniformity to its rituals and customs, including those for marriage and cremation. As part of this, the observance of ‘Sree Narayana  month’, one of the main plans listed in a seven-point charter drafted by the Sree Narayana Dharma Sangham Trust and acknowledged by SNDP, will commence on August 17. “Sree Narayana Guru favoured the freedom to choose one’s own religion. There is nothing wrong in one selecting a religion after learning about all the religions,” said Swami Dharma Chaithanya of Sivagiri mutt.

“However, we have noticed many are lured to conversion by promising dwelling or money. This happens mainly due to ignorance about one’s own faith. Hindu religion may not be devoid of errors. “But it has several texts which offer answers to one’s spiritual quest. Earlier, caste system denied a large section the chance to learn scriptures which are a treasure trove of spiritual knowledge. Now, it is freely available in Malayalam,” he said.The month will encourage the observance of penance for around five weeks starting Chingam 1 - the birth month of the community’s spiritual leader Sree Narayana Guru - to Kanni 5 - the day of his ‘mahasamadhi’.

“Most communities have an annual period of penance which cleanses the body and mind of those observing it. However, many, including those from the Ezhava community, do not have this. 
“So we decided to observe it from this year. It will help them health-wise, too,” said Swami Chaithanya.
He said the month will not, in any way, curb the festivities of Onam which also falls in the Chingam month.“Observing the month does not mean Onam cannot be celebrated. All it aims is to enforce a simple diet and abstinence from non-vegetarian food and alcohol,” he said.SNDP vice-president Thushar Vellappally said the community was facing many challenges, including religious conversions due to an ignorance of spirituality.

“The new charter is a step to make the rituals uniform for leading a life highlighting spirituality. 
“The SND Sangham Trust and SNDP Yogam discussed this. SNDP Yogam can implement the charter via its 72,000 micro units and 38,000 family units under its 6,000 branches,” he said.
The charter also demands a stop to dowry, making wedding ceremonies simpler and avoiding non-vegetarian dishes and alcohol from the functions, restricting the observance of post-death rites to 11 days and conduct the ritualistic first feeding, naming ceremony and ‘vidyarambham’ of children at the abodes of Sree Narayana Guru only.


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