Washoe County Board of County Commissioners to open with Hindu mantras

Washoe County Board of County Commissioners in Nevada (USA) will start its day on February 20 with Hindu prayers, containing hymns from world’s oldest extant scripture.

Distinguished Hindu statesman Rajan Zed, who has opened the United States Senate and US House of Representatives in Washington DC with Hindu prayers besides 297 other legislative bodies across USA, will deliver the invocation from ancient Sanskrit scriptures before Washoe County Board of County Commissioners. After Sanskrit delivery, he then will read the English interpretation of the prayers. Sanskrit is considered a sacred language in Hinduism and the root language of Indo-European languages.

Zed, who is the President of Universal Society of Hinduism, will recite from Rig-Veda, the oldest scripture of the world still in common use; besides lines from Upanishads and Bhagavad-Gita (Song of the Lord), both ancient Hindu scriptures. He plans to start and end the prayer with “Om”, the mystical syllable containing the universe, which in Hinduism is used to introduce and conclude religious work.

Reciting from Brahadaranyakopanishad, Rajan Zed plans to say “Asato ma sad gamaya, Tamaso ma jyotir gamaya, Mrtyor mamrtam gamaya”; which he will then interpret as “Lead us from the unreal to the real, Lead us from darkness to light, and Lead us from death to immortality.” Reciting from Bhagavad-Gita, he proposes to urge commissioners and others present to keep the welfare of others always in mind.

Zed, a global Hindu and interfaith leader, has been bestowed with the World Interfaith Leader Award. Zed is Senior Fellow and Religious Advisor to Foundation for Religious Diplomacy, on the Advisory Board of The Interfaith Peace Project, etc. He has been a panelist for “On Faith”, a prestigious interactive conversation on religion produced by The Washington Post; and has produced a weekly multi-faith panel “Faith Forum” in Reno Gazette-Journal since February 2011. He was invited by the President of the European Parliament in Brussels (Belgium) for a one-on-one meeting to discuss Hindu issues and promote interfaith dialogue. He has been invited and participated in the World Economic Forum.

Hinduism, oldest and third largest religion of the world, has about 1.2 billion adherents and moksh (liberation) is its ultimate goal. There are about three million Hindus in the USA.

Created in 1861, Washoe County, spread in 6,542 square miles, is Nevada’s second-most populous county. Its Mission is: Working together regionally to provide and sustain a safe, secure and healthy community. Alexis Hill is Chair of Washoe County Board, while Eric Brown is the County Manager.

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