Nalanda International

Bridging Disciplines and Epochs Towards a World Culture

Nalanda International is a 501 C3 non-profit organization dedicated to the promotion of higher educational projects addressing dialog between different disciplines and ways of thought so as to encourage approaches towards a holistic world culture. In this, it seeks to foster the building of bridges wherever there are differences. Taking its name from the ancient Buddhist university of India, which promoted research and knowledge sharing among the many schools of Indic and Asiatic thought, Nalanda International aims at supporting a many-sided life of the mind and spirit seeking solutions to the problems of our time. Not neglecting the physical and social life, Indic knowledge, in its prime, had brought these dimensions into relationship with ethical ideals and spiritual experience, and Nalanda International exists to support such integral paradigms in contemporary times. Just as ancient Greece provided the continuing ideal of the perfection of the body and its athletic skills in the Olympics, Nalanda International fosters the perfection of mind and spirit, irrespective of religion, ethnicity or culture. Like Asia‘s mascot, the banyan, which spreads its branches and strikes roots across its ever expanding domain of unity-in-diversity, Nalanda International seeks organic growth and expansion of oneness worldwide, with the perception of the whole world as its home.

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Unification of Spiritual Paths

One of Nalanda's objectives is to promote the unification of all spiritual paths. This does not mean the founding of a single religion to include all religions or the promotion of any religion claiming to be all-inclusive. In fact, Nalanda's interest is not in the social or political dimensions of religion, but rather in the expansion of human consciousness towards an integral experience and realization of reality. World history provides humankind with a rich heritage of approaches towards the numinous and transcendent and Nalanda International wishes to put these in relation so as to arrive at engagements leading to syntheses, syncretism and hybridity. Towards this goal, it will promote researches which highlight positive cross-religious encounters that can enrich human experience through an enlarged understanding of consciousness, in which the different religious faiths, practices and experiences are seen as part of humanity's seeking for the divine.

Our objective is to accept every spiritual path as being unique, recognized, and respected by all as long as it does not claim to be superior to other paths, and is non-violent. The erstwhie President of India, Dr. Abdul Kalam’s message to the founder-president of Nalanda International, Navin Doshi, is an inspiration guiding us: “Dear Navinji—Thanks for giving me your book, Lakshmi and Saraswathi (Goddess of Wealth and Goddess of Wisdom). I am really moved by your last paragraph of the article on ‘Gandhi’s Spirituality’: ’You may change the path to go around the obstacles, so long as the direction is toward the mountaintop, where all paths meet.’—Beautiful and enchanting. Greetings and best wishes. A. P. J. Abdul Kalam”

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