Hindus have asked for a permanent and exclusive Prayer Room at Princeton University in New Jersey (USA).
Hindu statesman Rajan Zed, in a statement in Nevada today, said that Princeton should respond to the requirements of its Hindu students to provide designated prayer-meditation hall for rituals, quiet reflection, festivals and spiritual exercise, which would help in their personal growth.
Princeton reportedly already has a University Chapel, Muslim Prayer Room and Interfaith Prayer Room.
Zed, who is President of Universal Society of Hinduism, pointed out that it would be a “step in the positive direction” in view of presence of a substantial number of Hindu students at Princeton, as it was important to meet the spiritual needs of these students. Some other universities/colleges in USA now offered Hindu prayer rooms.
Rajan Zed urged all USA and Canadian universities, both public and private, to respond to the needs of their considerable Hindu student bodies and offer prayer facility. Princeton needed to recognize the intersection of spirituality and education, which was important in Hinduism, Zed added.
Many Princeton students, Hindus as well non-Hindus, in a recent survey, reportedly expressed interest in creation of Hindu prayer space and supported the idea.
Chartered in 1746 and spread in 500 acres, Ivy League world-renowned research university Princeton is the fourth-oldest college in USA. Many of its faculty/staff have won Nobel Prizes. Its library holdings are over 14 million and its students number around 7,910. Christopher L. Eisgruber and Kathryn A. Hall are Princeton’s President and Board Chair respectively.
Hinduism, oldest and third largest religion of the world, has about one billion adherents and moksh (liberation) is its ultimate goal. There are about three million Hindus in USA.