Wednesday, 12 December 2007

Minutes of 11/12/2007 meeting

University of Manchester Interfaith Society

18:00, 11/12/2007, St Peter's Chaplaincy's Library


Simon, Kevin, John, Yoji, Joy, Mo, James



List of suggested events and speakers for 2nd Semester

* University Calendar

Christmas vacation:
15 December 2007 - 13 January 2008

14 January 2008 - 27 January 2008

Second semester

28 January 2008 - 14 March 2008

Easter vacation:
15 March 2008 - 6 April 2008

* Multifaith calendar for 2008

* Hare Krishna

Invite them to give us cooking lesson in vegetarian cuisine

Contact Deen Bandhu

* Mormon

We decided to leave it up to individual members if they wish to pay them a visit

* Jain

Visit their temple in Levenshulme (Joy will make a contact)

* Baha'i

U.N. World Religion Day (Monday 21/01/2008)

* Humanist or Atheist

Invite a humanist or atheist speaker to discuss issue relating to secularism.

Format yet being agreed.

* Sikh

Invite the speaker from the last Banquet
* Jewish
Tu B'Shevat (Jewish New Year for Trees) 22/Jan,

Yoji will email Elliot to ask if we can be invited

* Pancake day (02/Feb) during Multicultural Week (01~06 Feb)

Join other St Peter's affiliate groups

* The Banquet

It must be held before Easter vacation.

In the past, it coincided with Manchester Peace Week (01~09 Mar 2008) and Multifaith Women's World Day of Prayer (07/Mar/08)
We have decided that we will hold a meeting 5 to 6 weeks prior to the event, i.e. before 22/Jan/08.
The publicity material should be ready two weeks prior to the event

* Retreat

Idea for the retreat will be discussed further in the next semester.

The event, if held, will happen after the Easter holiday.

* Visit to the place of worship

Joy will organise visit during the term on ad hoc basis

Standing invitation from Sikh (Saturday 7 am)

Standing invitation from Hare Krishna (Sunday)

Society Administration

Yoji is going to apply for a Life membership of Students' Union
He will fill the position of society secretary (or treasurer)
James has created yahoo mailing group. Future email will be conducted through this mailing list.

Next Meeting

To be held on the second week after we return from Christmas holiday (i.e. 22/01/08)

More formal society event calendar will be printed soon afterward.

Saturday, 8 December 2007

Christmas carol service

Just a reminder, tonight 8 December at 6 is the international carol service at St Peters chaplaincy. Its Christmas carols in many languages, dont miss it!!!

Also, the catholic chaplaincy is holding its christmas carol service (Carols by Candlelight) on 12 December at 7 pm.

Next Tuesday (11/12/07), we are having our last meeting for this year. Topics of discussion are review of this year's activities (inc the last Banquet) and planning next year's schedule plus admin matters.

Visit to synagogue

A few of us visited the reform synagogue at Jackson's row on occasion of Shabbat and Hanukkah. We were greeted by Rabbi Silverman, who explained the meaning and significance of Hanukkah as a tribute to multiculturalism. Someone lit the hanukkah candles before we began, to remember sacrifice of those who laid their lives in defence of their faith and way of life. The service was very lively, with lots of songs in Hebrew based on devotion to God and other themes, from macabees and deuteronomy, and main prayer of the shabbat. Then we went down where the rabbi prayed and broke bread and wine, after which we had a vegetarian meal over friendly discussions. Later we were invited to the liberal judaism service in the Unitarian chapel, where we had lots of bagels.

Thursday, 6 December 2007

The Banquet: discussion on sexual identity and faith

The topic of "the Banquet" (formerly called Abraham's table) interfaith society food meeting on 4 december was "Sexual identity and Faith".

First there was a series of 5 minute talks by different speakers.

First speaker was an orthodox jew who was also gay, he talked of his own experience. The Hindu speaker was a girl from NHSF Hindu Soc who quoted from Bhagavad Gita, where you can achieve God no matter what you are, so sexuality isnt an issue. The sikh speaker also said its not such an issue for sikhs. The christian speaker felt that many cultural practices came under purview of religion when the church took over power that formerly belonged to the state, hence the issues. The Bahai speaker said that as in many other religions, homosexuality isnt allowed in Bahai faith, but its between you and God, no punishments are prescribed for it. The Buddhist speaker, spoke that Buddha didnt speak on the issue and so homosexuality isnt an issue but Buddhism is so diverse so its inevitable there will be different viewpoints, also the focus in Buddhism is to conquer the mind and get liberation from suffering, in the mind there is no male or female, straight or gay so this isnt an issue at all. The speaker for Paganism, said something like sexuality is not an issue: you are free to do what you want as long as you dont harm others. The muslim speaker stated that homosexuality isnt allowed in Islam as per the Shariah law.

After the first round of talks (it was around 6:45 pm) there was food which was largely vegetarian, with drinks and dessert.

When people had finished eating, there was an interfaith quiz organised by the Young Greens (Green Party student members). There were 2 questions from each religion, donated by people belonging to those religions.

At the end of everything we had a group photo. Also one leader from each religious community (including the chaplains, Mukti, Khan and Tim from multifaith reference group) signed a joined statement pledging to unite and work together on issues of common concern.

Monday, 3 December 2007

Sikh Soc video debate

Waheguru Ji Ka Khalsa, Waheguru Ji Ki Fateh

Hi all, just another email with the final details for our Video Debate event, which will take place Tomorrow!
Hope to see you all there - its gonna be next level!

Date: Tuesday 4th December (tomorrow!)
Time: 6pm-8pm
Venue: The Sandra Burslem Building (MMU), Room 201 - It is number 19 on this map
Contact: 07930120580 (Daaneshwar)

The details are also available on the attached poster!

Manchester Universities Sikh Society

Waheguru Ji Ka Khalsa, Waheguru Ji Ki Fateh

"Maans Ki Jath Sabhai Ekai Pahihchanbo"
Recognise the whole Human Race as one

- Sri Guru Gobind Singh Ji Maharaaj (Akaal Ustat)

NHSF events


This week...

With the National sports competiton just around the corner, practises are well under way. However, it is still not too late to be part of the team.

Date: Tuesday 4th December
Time: 6.00pm-7.00pm
Venue: Powerleague Central, 20 Union Street,M12 4JD. Meet outside the Manchester Museum entrance on Oxford Road (opposite Brunswick Street) at 5.30pm latest. Look out for the White NHSF hoodies!
Cost: Members: £1.50/ Non-Members: £2

If you are interested in taking part in either netball, kabaddi or kho please email us at with the subject title "sport", stating your name and the sport you are interested in.


This week Manchester NHSF will be hosting Bharatanatyam workshops. Bharatanatyam is a a classical dance originating from Tamil Nadu, a state in southern India. It is widely practised around the world and is one of the most popular dances around! Here are the details of the workshop:

Workshop: Bharatanatyam
Date: Thursday 6th December
Time: 6.00pm - 8.00pm
Venue: The Limes, Owens Park
Cost: FREE!


Taught by a renowned professional kathak dancer-Aakash Odedra, who has trained in India and also worked with Bollywood stars like Hritik Roshan. Again no experience is necessary so please do come along.

Date: Saturday 8th December
Time: 2.00pm - 3.00pm
Venue: Withington Girls' School, 100 Wellington Road, Fallowfield

If you are interested in attending this particular workshop, please email us at with the subject title "Dance Workshops".

Whether you're a beginner or an advanced dancer ALL students are more than welcome.

Check out our website for details -!

Sunday, 2 December 2007

Interfaith Society event: The Banquet

About 'The Banquet' December 4, 2007 at 5pm

Ever wondered what religion has to say about one's sexual orientation, sexual identity or premarital sex? If so, you'll be pleased to hear that The Banquet (formerly known as Abraham's Table) will be hosting an open discussion about sexual identity and faith. On Tuesday 4th December, at 5pm in Hillel House (Greenhey's Lane, Hulme, M15 6LR-behind John Rylands library) you'll have the unique opportunity to listen to members of different faiths give their religion's perspective on sexual identity. This will be followed by a quiz on xenophobia and a FREE meal (kosher, halal and vegetarian will be catered for).

Along with the Interfaith reference group and the Young Greens, the Interfaith society would like to invite you to attend, listen and engage in the discussion.

Challenging orthodoxies Society debate: God, delusion or truth

'God: Delusion or Truth?'

A discussion forum organised by the challenging orthodoxies society on the existence of God. Everybody is welcome.

Tuesday 4th December
Roscoe building
Lecture Theatre A
5:15 - 7:00 pm

Two speakers

Guy Otten
Senior Crown Prosecutor and member of the British Humanist Association.
"God belongs in the museum alongside jupiter, zeus, odin, mithras and zoroaster."

Sharif Hafizi
Islamic philosopher and author of forthcoming book.
"I believe any rational thinking person would come to the conclusion that a Creator exists by necessity."

Two short talks followed by question and answer session.

Sikh Soc events

Waheguru Ji Ka Khalsa, Waheguru Ji Ki Fateh

Hey all! After an amazing North Sikhi Week and a great turnout for football and badminton last week, its time for the penultimate event of the year.

As we take a lax approach to a fun-filled Christmas holiday, the Sikh Soc gives all of you intellectuals a chance to stimulate your brains with a Video debate.

What is a Video debate I hear all of you ask? We are giving you the chance to watch 3 short, interesting Sikhi related videos which will no doubt invigorate and raise some everyday issues faced by all of the members providing you with the ideal platform to enlighten and perhaps even challenge some of them. Now as well as SikhSoc being the most fun-filled, social societies the universities have to offer, we also like to live up to our reputation of being intellectually and spiritually grounded. So bring yourselves along to the table not forgetting your brains and chat, argue and debate about what really grinds your gears!!

Date: Tuesday 4th December
Where: TBC – another email is going to be sent out in the near future.
When: 6.30-8.30pm
Contact: 07930120580 (Daaneshwar)

Hoodies will also be available for purchase at the event!
So look out for another email very soon with the venue for the debate. It's gonna be big – so hope to see you ALL there!

Manchester Universities Sikh Society

Waheguru Ji Ka Khalsa, Waheguru Ji Ki Fateh
"Maans Ki Jath Sabhai Ekai Pahihchanbo"
Recognise the whole Human Race as one

- Sri Guru Gobind Singh Ji Maharaaj (Akaal Ustat)

Tuesday, 27 November 2007

27 November Interfaith Soc planning meeting

At the interfaith society meeting the topic was the forthcoming Abraham's Table (renamed "The Banquet") on tuesday 4 December from 5 pm onwards. John, Yoji, Kevin, James and others discussed availability of speakers from various faiths (on topic of sexual identity and faith). Oxana has already agreed on Buddhist speaker Enrique, most other faith societies have also been represented. We still dont have a pagan speaker, Kevin's trying to organise one. The Xenophobia quiz has been prepared too. Publicity efforts for the event were also discussed.

Sunday, 25 November 2007

NHSF Bhagavad Gita Class


Fascinated by the very base of Hinduism? Do you want to know more about the culture which has brought us many amazing features of everyday life, which we all use without a second thought? This week Dinabandhu Dasji, a Hare Krishna monk for many years presents an immense introductory course on the Bhagavad Gita, a course that is sure to leave you walking away speechless. Come and see for yourself what the fuss is all about.

Dates: Monday 26th Nov -Friday 30th Nov

26th - 29th November
Venue: Geoffrey Manton Building
Manchester Metropolitan University
Room 307

30th November
Venue: Sandra Bursulem Building
Manchester Metropolitan University
Room G.08

Time: 6pm - 8pm everyday
Cost: FREE!

There will be a free vegetarian meal after every workshop so make sure you take up this opportunity for a wealth of food and knowledge. If you are interested in attending the course, please email us at with the subject title 'Bhagavad Gita Courses'.

Check out our website for details -!


NHSF Manchester.

Tuesday, 20 November 2007

Buddhist society activities

Dear members,

1. Meditation Class will take place as usual tomorrow, Monday, 19 November, at 6 pm, at Schunck room, on the first floor of Burlington Rooms. Burlington Rooms are above the Vegetarian Cafe, on your right hand side if you stand facing John Ryland's Library (the main Library of the University), in Burlington Street.

As usual, you are encouraged to report to Chris, our meditation teacher, after we practice as a group.

Tea and biscuits will be provided as usual.

2. Engaged Buddhism

Tree Responsibility is an organisation who have a grant to plant lots of trees on the edge of the Peak district between Lancashire and Yorkshire. The plot where we're planting is in the Upper Calder valleys near to Walsden village. For the planting you get ten minutes going over how to plant the trees (we have over 2000) and then it takes about 10 more minutes to get the hang of it. You can sweat a bit but its quite easy and some kids will be doing it. A great motivation is that there are trees
planted from 6 years ago and they're all 8 foot tall now. Its also free, though a 2 pound donation will get you lunch, and you might want some wellies if its raining a lot. We'll be leaving on the 9.09am train from Manchester Victoria Station Sunday morning and it's 34 minutes away.

Contact Info Phone: 07910847281

Facebook event:

Thank you,
Yours truly,
Oxana (Olga Owl on facebook)

Buddhist Society website:
Group on facebook: Manchester University Buddhist Society 88

SCM meeting: on Poverty

Poverty in Manchester

This week Paul Wenham, manager of the mustard tree charity for homeless
people in Manchester, is leading a workshop on poverty in Manchester.

Come along to find out more about the problems around poverty in Manchester, and to find out how you can help.

Thursday, 7.30pm, St. Peter's House Chaplaincy (opposite blackwell's bookshop). Come along at 6.30pm for a free meal.

God bless,


Sikhi Week - Manchester's Biggest Ever!!

Waheguru Ji Ka Khalsa Waheguru Ji Ki Fateh
This year things just keep getting bigger and bigger, first the Langar event in which over 1000 people were fed, and now an Akhand Paath for Sikhi Week in which potentially even more will be fed.
For those of you who don't know what an Akhand Paath is, take a look at
As you can imagine, given the scale of an Akhand Paath, there will be a great deal of seva involved. This is a great opportunity for you to get involved . There are many different things to be done, from cooking (skilled labour) to serving to cleaning. Of course if you haven't got much time then at least come down for the 'eating' (highly skilled labour). Saturday will be a particularly busy day, and therefore there will be lots to be done. Just ask one of the committee members and they will tell you what needs doing.
There will be a talk at the Gurdwara on Thursday Evening, which will cover a diverse range of issues related to equality, for example gender equality, race equality, social equality and, as the title suggests, caste equality. The speaker for this talk will be Harwinder Singh of the highly acclaimed Sikh Education Council UK. His talks in the past have been very well received and we anticipate the same for this one also. We have set the time of the talk nice and early, so those who may have certain thursday night engagements should be back in time. A talk not to be missed!
There will of course be Kirtan on all 3 days, in the evening on thursday and friday, and in the morning/afternoon on saturday. There will be opportunities for you to do Kirtan on friday evening and saturday morning. When you arrive just tell one of the committee members and they will organise that for you.
We will be taking students from Piccadilly Gardens on all 3 days. For those coming at different times of the day, or those who wish to make their own way there, directions to Sri Guru Harkrishan Sahib Gurdwara are enclosed.
The program is as follows:
Thursday 22nd November
7am - Arambh of Akhand Paath
5:30pm - Meet at Piccadilly Gardens to be taken to Gurdwara
6:30pm - Talk entitled 'Caste it out of Sikhi'
Friday 23rd November
Continuation of Akhand Paath all day
5:30pm - Meet at Piccadilly Gardens to be taken to Gurdwara
Saturday 24th November
7am - Bhog of Akhand Paath
Followed by Kirtan, Nishan Sahib Sewa and Langar (This will go on into the afternoon)
11am - Meet at Piccadilly Gardens to be taken to Gurdwara
12pm - Charity Car Wash in Aid of 'ASR Charitable Trust' ( )
If you are getting late when coming to Piccadilly Gardens, just give us a ring on 07930 120 580 (Daaneshwar) or 07969 108 929 (Sarvinder) and we may be able to accomodate you.
We hope to see you there all 3 days (the food will be different everyday)!!
Manchester Universities Sikh Society
Waheguru Ji Ka Khalsa Waheguru Ji Ki Fateh
"Maans Ki Jath Sabhai Ekai Pahihchanbo"
Recognise the whole Human Race as one
- Sri Guru Gobind Singh Ji Maharaaj (Akaal Ustat)

Bahai tranquility zone

In today's interfaith society meeting, Simon organised a bahai tranquility zone with the help of 3 other friends. There were only about 6 or 7 people. A very beautiful shrine of candles etc was prepared, everyone sat around it and read out scriptures of different faiths, or simply relaxed in the spiritual atmosphere.

Sunday, 18 November 2007

Interfaith Soc: next Tuesday

Simon is conducting Tranquility Zone session of Baha'i faith next Tuesday, 5.30.

We are also planing to visit a prayer event (Hope 2008 in Greater Manchester) held at Manchester Cathedral at 7.30.

Here is the the link to the event.


Omkari 2007


OMKARI 2007!!

Check out the details at!

NHSF Manchester's most prestigious royal ball is here!! So fasten your seatbelts and join us in what promises to be a spectacular night of entertainment, dinner and dance!


Final Ticket Sales...
Monday 19th November:
- 12.00pm to 1.00pm

- University of Manchester Students Union

- 5.00pm to 5.30pm

- Owens Park Reception

- Wilmslow Park Reception

Tuesday 20th November:

- 12.00pm to 1.00pm

- University of Manchester Students Union

- 5.00pm to 5.30pm

- Owens Park Reception

- Wilmslow Park Reception

Tickets on the door...

There will be a small quantity of tickets available on the door - but make sure you get there sharp at 6.30pm to buy them. Tickets will be sold on a strictly first come first served basis.

All members must show their membership cards to get members rates on tickets. NO SEATS RESERVED WITHOUT FULL PAYMENT.

Members: £23

Non-Members: £25

Contact 07092 258 264, email us at, or check our website for more details.

Pranaam from,

NHSF Manchester.

North Sikhi Week

Waheguru Ji Ka Khalsa, Waheguru Ji Ki Fateh!

Hi all,
Well it is November and it's that time of year again, yep North Sikhi Week has descended upon us. Its always well attended and received. The events that are taking place are detailed below. If you are interested in coming to any of the events, please get in contact with us(phone number below).

This year its extra special for us as we are hosting an Akhand Paath at Sherbourne Street Gurdwara.
You can find out more about Akhand Paaths: (

As an Akhand Paath is such a big event for us, we are going to need YOUR help in the Seva. If you are free to do any seva during the 48 hours of the event, please get in contact with us. We've got a lot of different types of Seva that you can get involved in such as preparing the langar, giving out prashaad, feed visitors etc. We will also be hosting a talk on Thurday about Sikhi and it's based on the concept of equality.

Monday 19th November

Time: 6.30pm
Place: Roger Stevens Building, LT5, Leeds University
Event: Sikh Women and Sacrifice

Tuesday 20th November

Time: 6.30pm
Place: Arts Tower, LT1, Sheffield University
Event: Ardaas and Exhibition

Wednesday 21st November

Time: 6.30pm
Place: Hub training room, The Guild, Liverpool University
Event: Life after Death

Thursday 22nd November

Time: 7am (Yes we mean 7 in the morning)
Place: Sri Guru Harkrishan Sahib Ji Gurdwara, Sherbourne Street, Manchester
Event: Arambh of Akhand Path


Time: 6.30pm
Place: Sri Guru Harkrishan Sahib Ji Gurdwara, Sherbourne Street, Manchester
Event: 'Caste it out of Sikhi' Talk

Friday 23rd November

Time: 12AM to 11.59PM
Place: Sri Guru Harkrishan Sahib Ji Gurdwara, Sherbourne Street, Manchester
Event: Continuation of Akhand Path

Saturday 24th November

Time: 7AM
Place: Guru Harkrishan Sahib Ji Gurdwara, Sherbourne Street, Manchester
Event: Bhog of Akhand Path


Time: 12PM
Place: Guru Harkrishan Sahib Ji Gurdwara, Sherbourne Street, Manchester
Event: Charity Car Wash

If you are interested in going to ANY event or helping out at the Akhand Paath, please contact: Daaneshwar (07930120580)

Hope to see you all soon….

Manchester Universities Sikh Society

Waheguru Ji Ka Khalsa, Waheguru Ji Ki Fateh!

"Maans Ki Jath Sabhai Ekai Pahihchanbo"
Recognise the whole Human Race as one

- Sri Guru Gobind Singh Ji Maharaaj (Akaal Ustat)

Muslim week

26th - 30th NOVEMBER

A Week of Events

Monday 26th November

Talk: Sahabah - A Forgotten Nation
Speaker: Othman Latif
Time: 5:30pm
Venue: Roscoe Theatre A

Tuesday 27th November

Talk: Trials & Tribulations
Speaker: Omar (Tate) Abdullah
Time: 5:30pm
Venue: Roscoe Theatre B

Wednesday 28th November

Brother's Social: One Day Football Tournament
Time: 1:00pm
Venue: Pitz - Power League, Ardwick

Sister's Social: Bowling
Time: 1:00pm
Venue: Meet at Mc Dougals (south campus prayer room)

Thursday 29th November

Talk: Who Are You?
Speaker: Ilyas Karmani
Time: 5:30pm
Venue: Roscoe Theatre B

Friday 30th November

Dinner: Time for Change...
(inc. Talk & Entertainment)
Speaker: Yusuf Chambers
Time: 5:30pm (Arrival time)
Venue: Sanams Restaurant


Your Islamic Society

Thursday, 15 November 2007

SCM social (ceilidh) and weekend away


This week is SCM's termly social event, which means 2 things. Firstly, we'll be going to Manchester Ceilidh (Gaelic folk dancing) tomorrow evening, 14th November, Jabez Clegg, opposite Manchester Uni union. We'll be around from 8.30pm, text me on 07784118640 if you'd like to come.

Please note that this means there will be no meeting or meal on Thursday evening.

Secondly, this weekend is National SCM's termly gathering in Mumbles, Swansea. It costs just £12 for food and accomodation, and the minibus will cost around £20. There are still 7 places available, so email me if you'd like to come. The minibus is leaving at 2pm (sharp) from St. Peter's House Chaplaincy on Friday 16th November and will be back sometime on Sunday evening. Text me or email me if you haven't yet booked your place and would like to come.

God bless,


Tuesday, 13 November 2007

Slavery, activism and hermitude

The topic of today's scripture study and discussion was approaches to slavery from different religions, and also about the emphasis on being a hermit Vs activism in different religions. Yoji, myself, John, James, Claire (who led the session), Mo, Kevin, and Shimon were present. In slavery we discussed transatlantic slavery, untouchability, catholic and protestant missions, Bahai scriptures on slavery etc. As for the issue of activism Vs seclusion, the consensus was that it is sometimes necessary for spiritual growth, but the emphasis varies between different religions.

Tuesday, 6 November 2007

Ko Do Ryu Zen non violent Karate

At interfaith Soc on Tuesday 6 Oct, Oxana gave a talk on Zen non violent Karate, and some demonstrations by Oxana and Elliot, both black belts in the tradition.

She did pushing hands practice with a partner, walking practice while keeping hands in contact, on one foot always the weight is shifted, since hands in contact so if one moves away the other anticipates, and if one pushes the other yields) and the kata or form (including Rakusu and another series of postures or choreography).

Oxana said how this practice helps of conquer fear, walk with centre and balance and increase self confidence, spoke about taoism links, about the silk or point of contact with other person, about how one can make fast progress to Black Belt level in 3 years or less in this style. The practice is free, on every thursday 6 pm in Arts building.

Saturday, 3 November 2007

Oct 30: Interfaith Planning meeting

Interfaith Student Society meeting held on October 30, 2007.

Presence: Oxana, Joy, Kevin, Mo, Yoji, Hana, John, James Grant, Justin (Young Greens)


Apology: Clare Dowding

The following decisions were made for Abraham’s Table (the name being currently brainstormed for renaming)

Date: 4th December 2007

Time: 5.00pm

Venue: no discussion took place, yet to be decided. (Traditional venue has been St. Peter’s House, this may change)

Theme: ‘Sexual identity and faith’

Publicity and design: The poster would be designed by Mo.John would print and prepare it. James, Hana, Sohel and Kevin would distribute them. John would also help in this. Faith Reference Group, Interfaith Society and the Young Greens will be mentioned on the poster.

Content and format of the event:

The evening will start with the historic signing up event by the Chaplains and faith advisers of all the faiths @ the university of a common ground statement.

Discussion will follow by the speakers from the faith groups listed below and the person responsible for contacting them is noted next to it. (If there are 2 schools of thought with in the same faith group on the issue, it is encouraged that both thoughts be represented at the discussion. It was also discussed that it would be great if the speakers are students but this is not compulsory in case of difficulty in finding a student speaker). The length of each talk should be kept to 3 minutes

Hana will draft the letter to the Faith Societies or representatives outlining the possible scope of topics to be covered in the talks. Each speaker is to choose one aspect to cover, they do not have to talk about everything:

* Sexual and loving relationships
* Sexual identities such as homosexual, transsexual, bisexual
* Sensuality and spirituality
* Sexual identity as part of coming of age and rites of passage

Hindu – John will contact them

Muslim- Hannah Agil

Buddhist –Oxana

Christianity- James Grant

Jewish –Hana Agil

Bahai –Mo

Sikh –John

Pagans and Humanists (if possible) –Kevin Gilbride

The discussion would be moderated by Hana Agil.

Following the discussions, the participants will be asked to form small groups during the sharing of food. The Young Greens will lead a quiz on Xenophobia during this time. The quiz will be coordinated by Justin. Participants will be given a chance to have their food first, then form groups. The quiz will then be carried out in a manner of a pub quiz. The teams will pick their names and the questions will be shouted out.

Justin will draft the letter to the Faith Societies or representatives asking them to provide 5 questions about their faith. Some questions would be easy and open-ended, for others, more difficult, Societies would provide multi-choice answers. This letter will be attached to the letter that Hana will have drafted.

You can see the pictures at

After the meeting we took photos and watched a film organised by Yoji titled "Monsieur Ibrahim et les fleurs du Coran (Mr Ibrahim and the Flowr of Koran").
Here is a synopsis of the film

"In a street called Blue in a very poor neighborhood in Paris, Monsieur Ibrahim (Omar Shariff) is an old Muslin Turkish owner of a small market. He becomes friend of the teenager Jewish Moises, tenderly nicknamed Momo (Pierre Boulanger), who lives with his father in a small apartment on the other side of the street. Monsieur Ibrahim gives paternal love and teaches the knowledge of the Koran to the boy, receiving in return love and respect."

Tuesday, 23 October 2007

Dada's talk at Interfaith society

Dada from Ananda Marga gave a talk today at the interfaith society meeting at 6 pm in St Peters chaplaincy. He spoke about the fact that we are at present more materially inclined but are slowly becoming more psychically (use the mind more than before) and will soon be spiritually developed, that all three of these must be balanced. Society as a whole has to be developed, not just the individual, so activism is needed too, we cant live in a cave and work for our own benefit, we have to live within society and work to change it. He spoke of how tantra yoga as practiced in anada marga is good for not only body but also this spiritual development, the idea of God or the cosmic wholeness being split into many which then merge into the one. Their website is

Thursday, 18 October 2007

This Sat: See Manchester as God sees it

This Saturday experience Manchester as you never have before.
You are invited to come on a City Journey Saturday, 20 October led by Terry, chaplain at St. Peter's House. The walk begins at St Peter's at 11 a.m. and will wind through the canals and streets of Manc to return to St. Peter's by 3 p.m..
The themes of the guided portions include: modern life, living streams within, foundations, objects of desire, stillness, seeing as God sees, and sailing away into the future. There will be time for lunch and a chance to visit the cathedral, the Roman fort that was the first founding of the city, and other parts of the city.
Come along to think freshly about what God might be up to in our city and in your life.
Where: St. Peter's House
When: This Saturday, 20 Oct., 11 a.m.

Please RSVP to Terry on or Nathan

Tuesday, 16 October 2007

Discussion about values and secularisation

This week in IFS we had a discussion about a number of topics, including the increasing secularisation of values in Western and other societies, and discussed some surveys in this regard, such as
We also discussed about theology as a viable subject of study, about the interfaith society itself and the people who attend it etc.

Sunday, 14 October 2007

Provisional Time Table for interfaith soc activities

9/10/07- Film night followed by attendance to Langar in Sri Guru Harkishan Sahibji
16/10/07- Bahai Tranquility zone conducted by Simon
23/10/07 Dada from Ananda Marga talking about alternatives
30/10/07 - Planning meeting for Abraham's table's content
6/11/07 - Zen Shorin Do non-violent karate workshop
13/11/07 - Scripture study-facilitated by Clare Dowding
20/11/07 - Visit to a worship place (yet to be decided between Cathedral, Synagogue or mosque)
4/12/07 - Abraham's table

Tuesday, 9 October 2007

Visit to Sri Harkishan Sahibji

Today at the Interfaith society, we saw the movie "Millions" about the little boy who has visions of many saints and gets a load of money and knows not what to do with it, it was great with all the crisps-chocolates-lemonades, full screen projector, humungous speakers, and all. But real pity only James, myself, Yoji and Kevin turned up to witness it. Then we made spontaneous move to Gurudwara Harkishan sahib on Sherborne street, where we were shown around by members of Sikh Soc and also treated to delicious Langar vegetarian meal of curry and chapati and drinks. We finally had long chat with the granthi (who reads the guru granth sahib scripture) and a committed devotee member of the temple. All in all it was an excellent experience.

Monday, 8 October 2007

Manchester Islamic Society events

Assalaamu Alaikum
The Islamic Society welcomes you to Manchester University. We're ecstatic to see that you've made it here and we, the Islamic Student Body of Manchester University, are here to ensure your time at university is fulfilling for both your faith as well as your degrees.

We have a variety of activities planned for this year, the most forthcoming of which is the Freshers Dinner on Wednesday the 26th of Sept at 6pm in the Pink Garlic restaurant on Wilmslow Road, its £5 on the door unless you already have a ticket.

We believe that its possible to go to university as a Muslim and to enjoy a complete Islamic lifestyle and this belief is the real purpose behind the ISOC and the reasoning behind our activities, we also spread the word and carry out events for non Muslims to make them aware of Islamic precepts and beliefs (a week called Islamic Awareness Week, originality at its peak!), and through these activities our goal is to please Allah, the Most Wise the Most Merciful, as in the Quran Allah the Great states to the nearest effect " Help you one another in virtue and piety"(5:2).

We have a lot planned for you guys this year and it is going to be dynamic and exciting. If you have any questions, whether they be Islamic related or University, please don't hesitate to ask as we are here for you, the email address is

Please remember the Islamic Society in your Du'as and enjoy your time here!!
Your Islamic Society

Assalaamu Alaikum

I hope this email finds you in the best of Imaan

In these last few days of Ramadan its important for us all to make preparations to carry forward the God conciousness we have obtained in this month, in order to aid us there will be an auspicious speaker coming to Manchester University on Wednesday the 10th of October in the Renolds Building hall C9 at 2.00pm (north campus) and he will be giving us all a reminder on What's your Ramadan Resolution?

Attached is a flyer for this event

For any questions related to this event contact
brothers -
sisters -

Your Islamic Society

Manchester Jewish Students: events

MJS...What's Happening this week?

What's going on?

Friday Night Fever....This FRIDAY

It's finally here..

Friday Night Fever - THIS FRIDAY

Enjoy the famous Shabbat atmosphere with over 100 Jewish Students.

An amazing Three-Course-Meal + Free Alcohol!

£3 with MJS Card
£4 without MJS Card

If you would like to attend you can pay at Hillel Lunch this Wednesday or contact Jenny Kudren or Rachel Kaufman on 07794072293.

Pre-Shabbas-Pints just beforehand in Fallowfield @ 5.15.............. For location call Mikey on 07828 904709.

MJS Hoodies

They've arrived! Whether for a cold lecture-filled day or as a great way to remember your time in JSoc in 20 years time....
The MJS HOODIES are here!!
To place your order come along to Hillel on Wednesday put your name down or speak to Shabz on 07940 140707.

With MJS Card:
1 x £13.99
2 x £25.99

Without MJS Card:
1 x £15.99
2 x £29.99

Blood Drive

Weds 10th and 17th October 1:15

Following the success of last year's blood drive MJS will be holding another one in the coming weeks!

There will be free freshments afterwards and even free taxis from Hillel at 1:15 on Wednesday!

Its one of the greatest mitzvahs you can do and every donation can save three people's lives!

Now, isn't that worth an hour of your time?


It's back. Want to learn Hebrew? Ken!??!?!
Then get yourself along to Hillel Lunch this Wednesday (10th Oct)
10 lessons - £10 with MJS Card, £15 without per term

Beginners 1:30-2:30pm
Intermediate 2:30-3:30pm

Or Call 07946 344136
to sign up or for more info!! LIMITED SPACES!!

Pro Evo Tournament

Sunday 14th October 7:30

See if you can beat your friends in the pro evo tournament this sunday!

Location tbc............

For more information contact Adam Taylor: 07763811587

Fresher's Weekend

October 26th-28th
If you want to spent the weekend meeting people from J-socs all around the country then come on Fresher's Weekend!
More details to follow shortly!
Please contact Natalie on 020 7387 4644 or

UJS Regional Laser Quest!



Prices To Be Confirmed........

Book your place now for this exclusive event with other Jewish Students from across the North.

Limited places so Book Now!! Ring Alanna 07852 345176.

Birmingham Booze 4 Jews

24th October
Tickets £12 before 17th October £15 after!
If we get enough people there will be a coach going from Manc (should be £10 each)
Free alcohol on the coach - speak to Naomi for tickets 07949950862

If you know anyone who is still not on the mailing lists then please inform me by responding to this e-mail address and I will try and add them before the next mailing goes out!


Bahai Society: Devotional meetings on Wednesdays

Dear All,

Many thanks for attending yesterday's devotional on 'Angels'.

Also, many many thanks to those who have agreed to host future devotionals.

Next wednesday 3/10/7 - Szymon is hosting,

Wednesday 10/10/7 - Rieul is hosting,

Wednesday 17/10/7 - Ben, Rosie and Hannah are hosting,

Wednesday 24/10/7 - Yasemin is hosting.

The Host is to think about a theme and allow all the opportunity to
participate. Also to help with refreshments(however all are asked to
bring soemthing if they choose) and tidying up afterwards. The room
will be booked via myself, at this stage, however as soon as the
Bahá'i society is up and running, probably via this organisation.


For those interested, a UHJ memorandum on devotionals, can be found on This was
written in 2001 and may therefore be slightly out of date, if anyone
has a more recent memo/thought, please let me know.

With lots of love to all, and looking forward to our wednesdays,

Tim Anglin.

Buddhist Society events and Facebook Group

Dear members,

1. The next Meditation Class will take place as usual on Monday, 8
October, at 6 pm, at Schwenk room, on the first floor of Burlington
Rooms. Burlington Rooms are above the Vegetarian Cafe, on your right
hand side if you stand facing John Rylands Library (the main Library
of the University), in Burlington Street.

Chris, our meditation teacher, will be happy to take reports about
your individual practice (that you have hopefully been doing at
home), after the group practice.

Tea and biscuits will be provided as usual.

2. Engaged Buddhism

I am sure that in the past few days we have all been concerned with
the Situation in Burma.

There are two actions you can take to support people of Burma: sign a
petition and join the demonstration in London on the 6th of October.

A. Petition:

B. Demonstration:

3. Facebook group

The University of Manchester Buddhist Society has got an official
group on facebook:

Manchester University Buddhist Society

Join for latest news, photos and events.

4. Events at Ketumati Vihara (Theravada, Sri Lanka).

A. This Saturday, 6 of October, there will be a Dhamma talk, the
topic is "Self preservation and Escapist utilisation of rituals by
Buddhist Believers".
B. On Sunday, 7 of October, there will be a Retreat from 9:30 am
till 5 pm. Meditation practised is Vipassana. The address of the
Vihara is 3 Pretoria Road, Hollins, Oldham, OL8 4NH. Take 82/83 bus
from Picadilly and get off opposite chamber road, then walk on
chamber road for 5 minutes till you see Pretoria road on your right.

Thank you,

Yours truly,

Oxana (Olga Owl on facebook)

Buddhist Society website:

Student Christian Movement events

Hello all,

This week's meeting is called 'Small World: Interconnectedness in a global community', which is national SCM's theme for the year. We'll be looking at globalisation and the environment from a Christian perspective.

The session will be led by Jo Merrygold who works for national SCM as their student links worker.

Meeting on Thursday in St. Peter's House Chaplaincy, Oxford Road (opposite blackwell's). Join us at 6.30pm for a free meal, and 7.30pm for our main meeting. We warmly welcome new members.

See you soon,

Co-ordinator, SCM Manchester

Our first meeting this term is on Thursday (20th September) in St. Peter's House Chaplaincy, Oxford Road. This term we'll be meeting at 6.30pm to share in a (free!) meal together. The main meeting will start at 7.30pm - you are welcome to join us then if you can't make the meal

If you have facebook, please join our facebook group:

God bless,
Co-ordinator, SCM Manchester

ALSO THIS WEEK: Chaplaincy trip to see the Blackpool illuminations. The coach is leaving St. Peter's House at 5pm on Sunday (14th October). The coach costs £6, and you'll need some extra money for fish&chips and if you want to go on rides. Book your place by emailing - there's only 46 places available, so book early to avoid disappointment.

Hindu Students Forum Manchester Events


We hope you enjoyed our Welcome Dinner! This week, we have got new exciting activities (including dance, yoga and sports) coming up for you! If you are interested in being a part of our upcoming Diwali Show, these workshops are your opportunity to socialise and get involved with NHSF!


Date: Thursday 27th September

Time: 6pm-8pm

Venue: The Limes, Owens Park

Cost: Members-FREE! Non-members- £2

Whether you’re a beginner or an advanced dancer ALL students are welcome…


Date: Tuesday 16th October

Time: 6pm-7pm

Venue: Little Court (through the refectory), Owens Park

Cost: FREE for all


Date: Tuesday 2nd October

Time: 6pm-7pm

Venue: Sport Development Leisure Centre, Denmark Road

Cost: Members: £1.50/ Non-Members: £2

KABADDI/KHO-KHO...Coming soon!

NB: Please Bring Membership Card for free entry to our events!

Contact 07092258264, email us at, or check our website for more details.

We hope to see you all there!


from NHSF Manchester.

8 October: Interfaith Soc. Film night

We're gonna watch a film called "Millions" about an idealistic kid from depressed south Manchester (not the oxford road corridor) who finds a sack of cash by the rail tracks, and has to decide what to do with it. It's a sweet film, showing how the money is perhaps seen with it's true value through the eyes of an innocent child. Munchies will be provided!

Events at Catholic Chaplaincy

Hello everybody!
Hope you're having a good week so far. There's lots of stuff going on in the chaplaincy so here's a little reminder.

Tuesday evening is the second CaFE dvd & discussion session, this week with Fr.Stan Fortuna. Starts at 6.30pm with a hot meal (free) and aims to be finished by 8.45pm. Tuesday evening is aimed at those who took part in CaFE last year, though new comers are welcome. The Monday evening sessions are focused on beginners - highly recommended.

Wednesday evening has a double bill for all those interested in social action. 5.45pm the Justice & Peace group meet if you're interested in campaigning, raising money and awareness for those less fortunate than ourselves then please pop along. The Society of St.Vincent De Paul (SVP) meet at 6.30pm for a 6.45pm start. Come to one or both.

Thursday evening the Scripture Sharing group meet at 6.10pm after 5.30pm Mass.
Thursday evening also hosts the Christian Heritage talks. Hot food, for £1.50, at 6.30pm with the talk at 7.15pm. This week St. Anthony of the desert. Explore and discuss the Christain story from the Apostles to the modern day. Learn about the extraordinary lives of the ordinary folk who followed Christ through the ages, discover the history of the Church (the good, the bad and the ugly) and your place within it in the 21st Century.

For all those going on the over-night pilgrimage to Walsingham on Friday, please be at the chaplaincy for as close to 5pm as possible. Anyone still wishing to go but who has not yet booked a place please see Sr.Kevina, Karina or Monica.

And finally, for any one interested in the pro-life movement, Salford Cathedral is holding a service of Hope, Healing & Remembrance on Saturday 27th October at 10am. See poster in the chaplaincy for more details.
Have a good week
God bless

Student Committee

Mass at Avila House Chaplaincy (Opp MU Student union, Next to The Holy Name Church) Mon, Tue & Thursday at 5.30pm. Wed & Fri at 1.05pm. Student Mass (Solemn) Sunday 7pm in The Holy Name and 9.15am (quiet) in Avila House chaplaincy.

Morning Prayer: 8am in the Chaplaincy Chapel
Midday Prayer: 12.45pm in the Chaplaincy
Evening Prayer: 5.15pm in the Chaplaincy
Good-Night Prayer: 9pm in the Chaplaincy

Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament: Mon-Fri 3-5.30pm
Rosary: Wed 1.30pm
Solemn Benedction: Fri 5.30pm
Confession: Wed and Fri 12.15pm and 5pm or on request.

Sikh events this week

Hey Freshers and Freshies too, I hope you have all settled in your new homes at Manchester, hope you guys are not missing the roti and daal too much!

SikhSoc presents its first gurdwara trip of the year on Wednesday 26th September, which will include a 30 minute talk on Sikhism and we will have some Kirtan. Last but not least, our personal favourite, langar (free vegetarian meal).

The programme is as follows:

6.00pm - Meet at Uni of Manc. Students Union (Oxford Rd) for bus to town

6.15pm - Meet at Piccadilly Gardens for walk to Gurdwara

6.45pm - Talk on Sikhism

7.15pm - Kirtan

7.45pm - Bhog followed by Langar

"Maans Ki Jath Sabhai Ekai Pahihchanbo"
Recognise the whole Human Race as one

- Sri Guru Gobind Singh Ji Maharaaj (Akaal Ustat)

Waheguru Ji Ka Khalsa, Waheguru Ji Ki Fateh!

Hi people! Hope everything is going well and you are all adjusting to uni life! We've got some great events coming up:

Cha and Samosa Party!

Manchester Sikh Society presents one of its biggest events of the year: the legendary Cha and Samosa Party! On Wednesday 10th October at the Council Chambers, 2nd Floor University of Manchester Students Union (next to Academy on Oxford Road). It will begin at 7pm. Its a great event for all you freshers to get to know one another, and a good catch-up session for you returning students. It's also an opportunity to eat and drink homemade Samosas and Cha (Tea), get to know the SikhSoc and generally have a fun packed evening. Here's what we're gonna have at the event:

  • · A quiz – prizes for the winners!
  • · Opportunities to get to know new people
  • · A video to introduce the committee and our events
  • · A Gatka display!
  • · FOOD!!!

The event is free of course but if you want to join the Sikh Society to get loads of discounts, remember to bring £3!
They'll also be an opportunity to sign up to buy some hoodies and t-shirts (with member discounts)!

So make sure you come along and bring all your mates - its an event not to be missed!

Punjabi and Gurmat Lessons

So many of you went home last week, so we are going to start Punjabi classes tomorrow (Sunday 7th October). They are held every Sunday, leaving at 4pm from the Precinct centre. Please let us know if you are interested. Contact Sarvinder on 07789693111 if you are able to make it.

Guru Ram Das Ji's Gurpurab

Guru Ram Das Ji's Prakash Purab (Birthday) is on Tuesday (9th October) and the SikhSoc will be organizing a trip to the Gurudwara to celebrate the day.

There will also be an Akhand Paath (48h non-stop reading of entire Guru Granth Sahib Ji), starting on Thursday evening and finishing on Saturday evening, to mark the occasion. There will be a Kirtan programme, followed by Bhog and Langar on Saturday evening.

If you are interested in attending either of the events, please contact us.

To find out more about Guru Ram Das Ji, the forth Guru, please read the following articles:

Celebrating the 300th Anniversary of Guru Granth Sahib Ji

A 4-day event organised by the Guru Nanak Nishkam Sewak Jatha (GNNSJ) to celebrate the 300th anniversary of Guru Granth Sahib Ji (as well as the 800th anniversary of Leeds) is going to take place at Roundhay Park in Leeds from Thursday 11th October to Sunday 14th October.

It includes things such as a Sri Akhand Paath, Interfaith Conference, Amrit Sanchar, Langar, Kirtan and an Exhibition.

Have a look at the attached information leaflet for the full outline and details of the event.
If anyone is interested in going to Leeds for any part of the event, please let us know.

Hope to see you all soon!
Manchester Universities Sikh Society

Waheguru Ji Ka Khalsa, Waheguru Ji Ki Fateh!

"Maans Ki Jath Sabhai Ekai Pahihchanbo"
Recognise the whole Human Race as one

- Sri Guru Gobind Singh Ji Maharaaj (Akaal Ustat)

Thursday, 4 October 2007

Timetable for Interfaith Soc

According to what we discussed ( to have a proper meeting on Tuesdays of 1 and 3 week) on our first meeting last month the dates that are definitely on the diary as event dates are ( IN BOLD)
9 October ( since the meeting on 2 October didn't come together I assumed 9th to be the first one; please let me know if this is inappropiate)
16 October
23 October ( Dada coming to speak??)
30 October (possibly planning meeting for Abraham's table's content???)
6 November
13 November
20 November (Visit to a worship place??)
4 December (abraham's table)
There are few developments, Dada from Ananda Marga have kindly offered to come and give a talk on 23rd October.
Could we talk about the content of the next Abraham's table on the Tuesday, between 23 October and 6 November or sometimes between then?(So that the posters, flyers of the Abraham's table can be prepared by the 2nd week of November and be circulated)
For workshops+ scripture study dates need to be chosen by the people who are leading it! Clare, Simon and Oxana could pick the dates?
We decided to make visits to worship places.There's a special event at Manchester Cathedral on 20th November (which is on our event dates) would people like visiting the Cathedral?or would people like to go to a Synagogue or Mosque?

Wednesday, 3 October 2007

Films to be shown in Interfaith Society: Yoji's email

I'm streamlining the email regarding the film night. As far as InterSoc Film night goes, reply only to this email please and do not send any other email.

The films suggested so far are

The Fountain
I Heart Huckabees
The Sweet Hereafter
Les Invasions barbares

Mar adentro
Monsieur Ibrahim et les fleurs du Coran
Waking Life
Le Grand Voyage

Thanks Hana. Le Grand Voyage is an excellent choise. I will try to get it for one of our film night. I missed it in my search because it didn't fit into my IMDB search criteria (mim 1000 vote). I will expand the search criteria further. I found few more.

David & Layla

Mr. and Mrs. Lyer
Devil's Playground

For each month, I will try to show at least one religious themed film and another one with a theme relevant to religion/faith/spirituality (eg. euthanasia, meaning of life/reality, redemption, nature of evil etc).

If anyone is interested in finding a film, please feel free to use

There are 1000s of films to go through. Please set the minimum rating to at least 6, prefably 7. Any film reated below 6 are not good one by any standard.

Friday, 28 September 2007

Burma Solidarity Vigil: 1 Oct, 1.30 pm

The whole Burma situation is very disheartening. It would be very sad if we keep quiet at times like this!

We are having a vigil in solidarity of the laypeople and the monks in Myanmar on Monday 1 October at 1.30pm in the St. Peter's Chaplaincy yard!

The vigil is organised by the Interfaith Society, St Peters Chaplaincy and with moral support from Buddhist Society. Be there! And tell anyone interested.

Email John jprobhu@yahoo. or John.Probhudan@ manchester. the international students chaplain if you have any questions.

Join at the facebook event and invite your friends:

Tuesday, 25 September 2007

Sep 25: First meeting of new term

In the first meeting of the Autumn term, after freshers week, we met at 5:30 pm in St Peters chaplaincy library. There were John, James the new chaplaincy assistant, Claire, Oxana, Joy, Enrique, Rueyfen, Shimon, Mo, Kevin etc. We decided to have Hana Agil (a muslim) as chair, Enrique (a buddhist) as treasurer and Kevin (a catholic christian) as secretary.

We also decided to have a timetable for formal meetings only 1st and 3rd (and 5th) Tuesday of every month at 5:30 in St Peters, but we will meet informally other tuesdays. We will have following:
Films: organised by Yoji
Workshop on Peaceful Zen martial art (oxana) and Bahai tranquility Zone (Schimon)
Scripture study on a given topic (organised by Claire)
Invited speakers for talks (organised by John, he has already talked to Dada from Ananda Marga, a hinduism-related spiritual group)

Kevin's summary of the meeting:
Summary of Minutes from preliminary meeting:
* Events on 1st and 3rd tuesday each month
* Abraham's Table 4th December
* Film 1st October - Yogi has it sorted, I need to book room, projector
* Need to sort visit - Jewish synagogue
* Need to sort speakers
* Scripture - sorted (thanks Olga!)
* Baha'i workshop with Simon sometime

Oxana's proposals for topics for Scripture Studies in 2007-08:
1. Righteous Anger: can anger (or any negative emotions for that matter) be justified?
2. Food and eating
3. Balance between social practice and spiritual practice (Variation: Which figure is an ideal in your religion: a Hermit or an Activist?)
4. What is the balance between the individual and the collectivist in your reigion?
5. The level of Fundamentalism (Dogmatism) prescribed by your scriptures?
6. Balance between institutional religious authority and individual consciousness in your religion?

Then we went to Gita Bhavan hindu Temple on Wilbraham Road (catch 85 bus from RNCM), it was the first meeting of national hindu students forum, website and

We heard the Panditji (Hindu priest) chant some mantras and prayers to various Gods including Ganesha (God of auspiciousness), Saraswati (Goddess of learning), in Sanskrit, followed by Arati (lighting of lamps and ceremonial worship). Many NHSF officers gave talks about their various activities, including Yoga in Owens Park, Diwali ball, Navratri, Raas Garba, Alton Towers trip etc, all of which are non alcoholic events. A speaker gave an interesting talk on Transnational Indian Identity, and publicised a forum for exchanging views and getting involved in the topic, . Then the people sang some hindu kirtans to Lord Shiva.

Finally we all had some icebreakers and delicious Indian vegetarian food kindly provided by the temple. The priest said that the temple is open daily in the morning and in evening between 7 and 8:30 and invited everyone to visit.

Wednesday, 12 September 2007

Interfaith Soc: activities

The meetings of the multifaith/ interfaith society include:

a. Regular scripture study sessions, where scriptures from various
faiths on a given topic, such as peace, are read and discussed

b. Visits to different places of worship. Last year we have visited a gurudwara (sikh temple), a hindu temple, bahai centre, and a jewish synagogue. The visits usually include a guided tour of the place and a brief introduction to the faith and its rituals, along with a meal, but this depends on the convenience of the organisers of the place of worship that we are visiting.

c. Friendly discussions on a given theme such as food. Since there is a danger of the discussions becoming a source of discord, we tend to keep the themes mostly to topics relating to faith (such as God and rules to be followed) and less to overt politics.
d. Socials, including icebreaker games and movie nights, with a movie shown that promotes interfaith or intercultural harmony, such as "the adventures of Rabbi Jacob" and "my big fat greek wedding".

e. An exhibition of some aspects of different faiths. We have had a workshop (as part of the Multifaith week in the student union) where we shared hindu meditation, bahai tranqulity zone, and a buddhist martial art.

f. We also contribute to giving different interfaith perspectives at the discussion at the interfaith meetings over food called Abraham's Table with the MFRG, the last one being on the theme of Faith and the environment.

g. The interfaith society has a student representative from most of the major world faiths, whose job is to coordinate between the society and the faith communities for the purpose of coordinating visits to their places of worship and for publicising any of their events such as festivals which they might like to share with us. This has resulted in our getting invited to some of the places of worship on special occasions such as the Bahai centre on the world religion day, the Reform Synagogue on the celebration of a festival, and the Buddhist temple on the occasion of Chinese new year. We hope to persuade prominent prominent speakers from different faiths to give us talks in the near future.

Tuesday, 29 May 2007

May 29: Social at Tai Wu

We had a nice buffet social, discussing things like Richard Dawkins, Bill's book on Only God can be proved to exist by reason, and the travels of many of our members who are going away for the summer.

Tuesday, 22 May 2007

May 22: Discussion on religions and women

We discussed for a while about what to discuss during this meeting. I had some material with me about eco-islam as a leaflet (you can download the leaflet and mor info from ) and hare krishna's ecologically self-sustaining community in Hungary
( ) so I thought maybe we could discuss about religions and the environment. Robert brought with him a funny film called Victor/Victoria ( ) but many of us had to leave early and it was unrelated to religion, so we didnt watch it. He also suggested a channel 4 movie called beautiful thing ( ). Anyway after a while we ended up discussing religions' approach to women (ironic for 6 guys to discuss, but no less ironic than the womens week at university few months back when there were 6 athiest or cynical women discussing women in religion, and 3 religious men).

Anyway, we discussed the bahai faith approach to women, especially the positive aspect that bahais are supposed to educate their daughters in preference if they have limited means, so that they can grow up to be good mothers. We discussed the buddhist problems about nuns having less rights than monks and the controversial part about women cant get enlightened. We went on to Christianity and discussed how perhaps (controversially for some) Jesus could be interpreted as a radical feminist in his time, since in the gospel are accounts where he touched women to heal them (perhaps not appropriate as per traditional jewish laws of the time), was anointed by a woman, had a woman wash his feet with tears before he washed the disciples' feet, was served water by a samaritan woman etc. we discussed the hindu concept of mother goddess, about God being depicted as androgynous ( ) in certain places etc, yet the fact that some women are yet oppressed. I had to leave a bit early, so missed the rest of the discussion. Perhaps Kevin or Robert could fill us in on that.

Thats all for now, think we shall meet again next week if people are willing to come along.

Tuesday, 15 May 2007

May 15: Discussion on meaning of life

We were thinking of showing the film "the Message" based on the founding of Islam by Prophet Mohammed (peace be upon him) and its early days (at least i brought my laptop and the DVD). However, it was a bit long and some of us had already seen it, so we shelved the plan. I have a DVD that was kindly given by the Islamic society (or it could be didsbury mosque) so if any of you want to borrow it, it can be arranged. For more information see
For those interested in many religious films, you can see the list at

We started with Oxana sharing some Buddhist jokes from (some of the jokes might need a bit of knowledge about buddhist world to appreciate)

After that we started with a discussion on the meaning of life, sharing our own views. There were various views from different perspectives discussed as to what is the meaning of life, including to get rid of suffering, to live in the fullness of life, to get close to God, to obey God's laws and his messengers, to live and not try to live, to simply exist, etc. We also spoke on how it would be to exist for a child in darfur for example. We also spoke about maths and physics and reality (inductive and abductive arguments, that there is no such thing as a perfect circle) and skepticism (that everything that is spoken is within some axioms out of which no communication is possible) and bayesians and meditation and drugs and a popular catholic priest called Brian D'arcy.

After the discussion, some of us went to falafel for some food. We decided that we would keep these meetings going for next few weeks, as long as people are happy to come along.

Sunday, 13 May 2007

Mar 13: mass at Holy Name

We went to the Holy Name church and although all couldnt see properly the whole thing, it was certainly a very interesting experience for everyone. At least you can read more about it here:

After attending the mass we went to Falafel restaurant in Rusholme and had a meal and also had grace before the meal in different languages: Bengali (from John), German (Robert) and English, and witnessed Nicholas and others breaking the Bahai fast with a Bahai prayer.

Tuesday, 8 May 2007

May 8: Discussion and scripture study

We had a scripture study this time, and discussed the attitudes of different religions to those who are non-believers (or apostates, or covenant breakers, or infidels, or heretics) in those respective religions. We discussed quotes from the Bible, Quran, Buddhist scriptures, Bhagavad Gita and Kitab-e-Aqdas to compare on this topic. we also discussed about some of the New religious movements (NRMs) that evmerged from some of the older religions.

Tuesday, 1 May 2007

May 1: Film John Safran Vs God

On Tuesday 1 May meeting, we continued watching the rest of the John Safran Vs God episodes (you can see most of them from youtube) including the very interesting exorcism episode with evangelist Bob Larson, with Bob "exorcising" John of all the daemons he picked up during his trials of all the earlier religions!

Tuesday, 24 April 2007

Apr 24: Film on John Safran Vs God

We watched four episodes of John Safran Vs God. If anybody is interested, a lot of the episodes are available on youtube, such as this one (treat for those of you who hate John Safran or think Buddhism is all fluffy and cute):

Hope to see you next week for the next four episodes, including the most interesting one on his exorcism by an evangelical minister.

Tuesday, 17 April 2007

Apr 17: Discussion on burial rituals

We had a discussion on a variety of topics including:
Burial and cremation: costs and ceremonies in different countries and different religions
Kevin's tour of Greece
Anti semitism and anti-gypsies in different european countries
10% taxes given to the Catholic or Lutheran church in Germany
Jack Van Impe, the walking Bible, who has memorised large protions of the Bible
Apocamon, a Bible revelations comic in Manga style at

Next week (25 April) we will be seeing a funny film (provided by John) about a person in search of God, who gets beaten by Buddhists in Japan, asks to join KKK in America although he is jewish, confesses something nasty in a Catholic confession, etc. We will hopefully be arranging a tour to the Mosque in Didsbury the following week.

Sunday, 15 April 2007

Apr 15: Sikhi Week

Its Gursharan Singh from Manchester Universities Sikh Society. I just wanted to let you guys know that there's a massive exhibition taking place at St. Peters Chaplaincy, Oxford Road on the 25th of April called 'Sikhi Centre'.
There's going to be a stall based exhibition on the basics of the Sikh faith, together with Talks by the Anglo Sikh Heritage Trail and some other eminent speakers, on topics such as Sikhs in the World Wars and Meditation etc.
Kirtan (Hymns) will be sung by Baba Fateh Singh Academy (based in India), together with a Sikh Martial Art Demo and also evening meals will be provided! It's all looking, with the grace of God, like it'll hopefully be a great day, so please come along.

So please send this information aswell as the poster attached to as many faith societies as possible.

Tuesday, 20 March 2007

Mar 20: Abraham's Table on Science and Religion

Speeches were as follows:
Bahai faith: Duncan, Buddhist: Oxana, Christian: Kevin, Muslim: Tariq, Hindu: Sanket

After that we had delicious curry food.

Mar 20: Interfaith society presentation during multifaith conference

You can download the presentation here

Wednesday, 7 March 2007

Mar 7: Women's week at student union: faith events

Following are the events related to faith/religion as part of student union international womens week:

Thursday: International Women's Day!!!
MR4 1-3pm: Women in religion's stalls -
MR4 will host tables/walls/general areas where women from different cultures will get to share with pride some of their cultural heritage.

MR4 3-5pm: Faith in Feminism discussion.
With women from various religious (or non-religious) groups. All are invited to hear and discuss what they feel the women's movement has done for them in their particular faiths.

Tuesday, 6 March 2007

Mar 6: Discussion on publicity matters

Thanks to Hana and also Kevin, we are almost on our way to becoming a recognised society in students union: Hana and Kevin have already submitted the forms and in tomorrow's meeting theres a good chance we may be recognised already, and then we can have an union email address, pigeonhole, noticeboard, publicity, van hiring for trips to places of worship, use of the rooms etc etc. Once we become formal, think we can do the following for publicity:

a) Invite every member on facebook and on the email list to meet together and get to know each other to work more closely in future
b) Approach the student religious societies directly, ask them to send representatives to attend our meetings and also publicise our activities among their members
c) Hold an AGM and decide on next years organisers (I am probably leaving, Oxana might have to leave, Nicholas will be in Egypt, Kevin and Hana will be around though) and maybe a draft pln, which we could synchronise to the student union events such as LGBT week, international multicultural week, womens week etc etc.
d) And more: if you have ideas please email me.

This week the student union was celebrating Women's week: think we should discuss about the topic of women in religion or religions approach to womens issues in some time. We decided next week to go to a place we have never been before as a society: Mass at the Holy Name church!!! It starts 5:15 pm and should end by 6 pm: after that we will go for having a Falafel together to Rusholme. Please all of you, come join us, especially if you've never been to a Catholic Maass before! However, as you might know, only Catholics are supposed to have holy communion so the rest of us can watch that part.

The week after that is Abraham's table, with free food from 6 till 8 pm. Topic of Abraham's table discussion is "Faith Vs Science" so should be interesting: we are already looking for at least one member (preferably a student studying science based course) from each faith to speak on the topic, and also an athiest. Hana said she might be able to get Student Direct newspaper to cover the event, so it should be great for publicity too! After that week its easter holidays, but after the easter we will be visiting the Mosque in Didsbury, which is really very friendly and welcoming to non muslims to learn about Islam.