May 2010

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A publication of the Young Jains of America SUMMER 2010 Theme: Paryushan

Welcome Message Jai Jinendra! We want to welcome you once again to another fantastic edition of Young Minds. Our goal is to keep the readers connected, informed, and entertained with articles from across North America. The 2010-2011 YJA Executive board is very excited for the upcoming year. The 2009-2010 YJA Executive board had a great year with fun-filled regional events, appetizing national dinners, and an outstanding convention in New Brunswick, New Jersey. We are excited to continue with our goal of keeping youth connected with new activities, articles, and perspectives on Jainism. If you would like to contribute your writing to future editions of Young Minds, please contact youngminds@yja.org. In addition, if you would like to get more involved with YJA activities, contact projects@yja.org – we are always looking for more youth support and input. We are here for you and can always be reached regarding any questions or concerns (chairs@yja.org). Regards, Your 2010-2011 YJA Co-Chairs, Mitesh Shah (mitesh.shah@yja.org) and Vaishali Shah (vaishali.shah@yja.org)

Table of Contents Welcome Message from the YJA Co-Chairs ’10-’11...pg. 1 Outgoing Message from the YJA Co-Chairs ’09-’10...pg. 2 Introduction to Paryushan for Young Jains...pg. 3 “Connect” by Atsi V. Shah...pg. 5 “When a Jain Meets a Non-Jain” by Abhishek Shah....pg. 6 Jain Recipes of the Month...pg. 7 YJA Convention 2010 Information...pg. 8 “Paryushan for the Preoccupied” by Hetali Lodya...pg. 9 Shital’s Education Corner...pg. 10 Introduction to YJA Executive Board 2010-2011...pg. 11 Regional Updates...pg. 12 Register to Vote Today!...page 14 YJA Donation Page...pg. 15

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YOUNGMINDS SUMMER 2010

Outgoing Message

By Shardule Shah and Naman Jain, Co-Chairs ’09-’10 Jai Jinendra! The 2009-2010 YJA Executive Board and 2010 Cherry Hill Convention Committee thank you for your incredible support during the last year. Because of your involvement with YJA events nationwide, more young Jains are getting involved in social, spiritual, and service activities than ever before. You have all helped us turn marketing tools such as Facebook and Twitter into means for young Jains to get to know each other on a personal level. Please continue to show the same level of support toward the 2010-2011 YJA Board. A nonYJA convention year presents even more opportunities than during a convention year because the work needed to put on the incredible biennial convention can instead be focused on furthering Jain values all across North America. Despite the thousands of hours taken to put together the 1,000-person 9th Biennial YJA Convention, the YJA Executive Board was able to put on a number of other events from August 2009 - August 2010. Here is a small sample: *Two national dinners - November and April: 15 locations per dinner, including Paraguay, Kenya, Mumbai, and Ahmedabad! Several hundred young Jains came out for these dinners! *International Essay Competition (NEW!) - Over 25 participants! *Fall Camping Retreat - Vineland, NJ *Winter Poconos Retreat - South Sterling, PA *Midwest Retreat (NEW!) - Grand Geneva, WI *West Retreat (NEW!) - Seven Circles Retreat Center (Badger), CA *South Retreat (NEW!) - Houston, TX There are numerous other accomplishments that the outgoing board was able to do for young Jains for North America. However, what is more important than us listing these events is a) thanking you for your participation and b) making sure that you return for these same events in the coming year. Do you have questions or concerns with how an event was run? Want to make suggestions? E-mail chairs@yja.org to speak directly with our new YJA co-chairs, Mitesh Shah and Vaishali Shah. We truly hope that 2009-2010 was a year that you met new Jains and reconnected with old friends. Our convention theme of Inspire. Connect. Do the Jain Thing. is not just a convention motto; it's a way of life that we hope all young Jains will strive to practice. Thank you for your support. Thank you for your time. But most of all, thank you for doing the Jain thing in your daily lives. -With love and respect, Your 2009-2010 YJA Executive Board and 2010 Cherry Hill Convention Committee

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Introduction to Paryushan for Young Jains By Shardule Shah and Khushbu Vora

(Adopted from http://pluralism.org/resources/tradition/essays/jain4.php) Please visit http://www.yja.org/ paryushan2010/ for more information on Paryushan and Das Lakshan! 1. What are Paryushan and Das Lakshan? Paryushan is the most important Jain religious observance of the year. For both Shvetambars, who observe the festival over a period of eight days, and Digambaras, for whom Das Lakshan lasts ten days, this is a time of intensive study, reflection, and purification. It takes place in the middle of the four-month rainy season in India, a time when monks and nuns cease moving about from place to place and stay with one community. Paryushan means, literally, "abiding" or "coming together." This year, Paryushan begins on Saturday, September 4th and ends on Saturday, September 11th. Das Lakshan begins on Saturday, September 12th and ends on September 21st. 2. What do Jains do during Paryushan and Das Lakshan? All Jains, from householders to monks/nuns, take on various temporary vows of study and fasting. In this respect, it bears comparison with periods of rigorous religious practice in other traditions such as the Christian observance of Lent. Paryushan and Das Lakshan conclude with a ritual of confession and forgiveness for the transgressions of the previous year – this ritual is called Samvatsari Pratikraman [more on this below]. 3. What is the purpose of taking a temporary vow? Vows enable you to practice self-control. In a society where we are addicted to everything from Taco Bell to “Gossip Girls” to shopping, selfcontrol vows will make you a mentally stronger person. It will prepare you for times when the fixtures you depend on every day are not there

anymore. The focus is now on spiritual happiness rather than material happiness. 4. What kind of vows can I take this Paryushan and Das Lakshan? Traditionally, Jains take vows of limited eating. For example, eating only two meals (between sunrise and sunset only with nothing else for the rest of the day) and drinking boiled water is called, ‘Besna’. Eating one meal using the same rules above is called, ‘Ekasna’. Abstaining from food for an entire day is called, ‘Upvas’. Taking a Pacchkan (vow) to perform these acts of self-control is very easy. Just call 1-866-611-5762 (a toll-free number) for the Jain Automated System for Mangalik and Pacchkan. Listening to Mangalik or taking the Pacchkan of your choice was never so easy! Whether it’s taking Navkarsi Pacchkhan (a vow to not eat until 48 minutes after sunrise to allow nighttime insects to clear out of visible spaces) or a self-made vow such as not eating dairy products or not raising your voice in anger, any vow can do wonders in regard to increasing your self-control and mental stamina. 5. (A) I already do Besna/Ekasna/Upvas. (B) It is very hard for me to limit when I eat. - What other vows can I take? There are infinite other ideas for vows you can take. What you cut from your life is completely up to you! Try abstaining from eating dairy products for eight or ten days. Eating dairy is a form of himsa (violence), so abstaining from milk, cheese, and ice cream will help to reduce the amount of violence you are responsible for. Additionally, try not getting angry for this time period. If someone has harmed you, show patience and demonstrate forgiveness. Make a vow to mediate for 10-15 minutes a day. Make a vow to leave Facebook for eight or ten days. Try not walking on grass at all.

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6. Tell me more about Samvatsari Pratikraman. For Shvetambars, the final day of Paryushan is Samvatsari Pratikraman, which can loosely be translated as the "Annual Confession." The act of confessing any infringement of the five great vows (non-violence, non-stealing, lying, celibacy, and nonpossessiveness) is part of the life of a devout Jain throughout the year. But on this day it becomes the focus of the entire community. The ritual of asking forgiveness is widened in scope to include family and friends and, finally, all living beings. The culmination of confession is receiving forgiveness from all living beings and also granting forgiveness to all beings. Samvatsari Pratikraman generally takes about 2 hours but is very interactive so any feeling of, ‘I’m lost/bored’ is minimized. If you attend Samvatsari Pratikraman, please wear simple white/cream-colored clothing. This emphasizes simplicity and contemplation and not gaudiness or outer beauty. The importance of attending Samvatsari Pratikraman cannot be overstated. If you would like to know where one is taking place, e-mail YJA’s Educaton Director, Khushbu.Vora@yja.org, or call your local Jain Center. Reading ‘English Pratikraman’ (access at http://www.yja.org/paryushan2010/ Eng_Pratikraman_2009_Final.pdf) during Samvatsari Pratikraman is a great way for the meaning of the day to be reinforced. 7. What if I cannot attend Samvatsari Pratikraman? If you cannot perform Samvatsari Pratikraman on the 11th, you can guide yourself through your temple’s Samvatsari Pratikraman using the English Pratikraman book on an alternate date (preferably between the 10th and 12th).

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Connect

By Atsi V. Shah (13 years old), A YJA Rising Star A smile, a wave, a hello are all ways of connecting. A smile can brighten up someone’s day. A wave could be gesture of “Hi, how are you?” The hello can show you care for them. All these gestures people do everyday connect them with the people around them. Even if you have 5 minutes, help out, connect! It will make you bond with others. I connect frequently in my everyday life. Whether it is saying quick ‘hey’ to my friends, waving at a stranger, or listening to the crickets chirping and birds singing… some way or other, I am connecting. One example is when I’m at the derasar, I offer my sincere prayer to Bhagwan. I love to serve food and bow down to elders. These moments of tranquility at the derasar soothe me for many days.

princess Rajul. On his way to wedding place, he saw and heard screaming of hundreds of caged animals. He asked the driver, “Why all these animals are crying?” The driver said, “They are going to get slaughtered for the wedding night dinner.” Prince Neminath was shocked. He decided not to marry, and then he took diksha. Bhagwan Neminath shows so much compassion towards the animals. He connected with those poor animals that were crying, wailing and begging for their life. He bonded with them, seeing their pain and sorrow, thinking their thoughts. He freed all the animals, took the diksha, and stopped all the bad karma entering his soul. Ultimately he achieved Kevalgyan, and become our 22nd Tirthankar.

Like Bhagwan Neminath, I wish, I can see pure soul in every living being, no matter how tiny it may be. Connecting is very important in life. It can Another way I connect is by smiling and bring joy to someone, or it can save someone’s life. I waving at people in neighborhood. A small chat or a respect every living being, and seek friendship with big grin can make the stress load on your shoulders them. Connect, Be Friend, Wish well for everyone! just a bit lighter. Jai Jinendra! Not only do I connect with my friends and family, I also connect and bond with other people as well. However, it is important not to forget our Bhagwan. Do we ever give 5 minutes to Him? I do it every day. Bhagwan is our only hope in times where evil is at large. Even our closest friends could turn on us due to the slightest mistake. Bhagwan is forgiving and a true friend. He knows when we lie, and when we make mistakes, and he knows what we do. And yet, he forgives and shows us the path of truthfulness. Our friends might hold a grudge, but Bhagwan does not. He saves us all when we fall, deep down so hard that even we see no hope. Bhagwan is that ray, which will makes us stronger, and be Bhagwan ourselves. That is only, if we connect with Him. There are many Tirthankars who have saved millions of souls, and freed them from worldly worries. But the Tirthankar that stands out to me the most is Bhagwan Neminath. The story goes as follows: Prince Neminath was getting married to a

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When a Jain Meets a Non-Jain By Abhishek Shah (New Haven, CT)

As I was walking towards Derasar for Mahavir jayanti, I heard a whisper. “Excuse me”, he said. He was dark, loaded with thick mustache, rajnikanth type sunglasses, orange shirt, black pants and Reebok shoes. He looked like a south Indian villain. He removed his glasses and introduced himself, “My name is Swami. I am a Tamilian. I came here for a business visit.” “Hello, I am Abhishek,” I replied as I was still trying to recover from his glary appearance. “How can I help you?” He pointed to all the Jains who were celebrating Mahavir jayanti and asked, “I am wondering what this get-together is about?“ His head was shaking from side to side like a bharatanatyam dancer while speaking. I controlled my laughter somehow and said, “Well. We are all Jains. We are here to celebrate the fifth day of paryushan festival.” “Paraa—yuuu...” he said as he struggled to pronounce it and waited for me to finish. “Par-yu-shan. It means abiding or getting together. Paryushan is a Svetamber eight-day period that aims to purify our soul like Aquaguard is used to purify water.” I explained by trying to be funny and keeping it simple. He gave me a disappointed look. I realized he was rather serious about understanding paryushan festival. So I decided to explain the significance before Swami, the Tamilian villain, hits me so hard that even google won’t be able to find me. “Do you have some more time?” I asked. For the next three hours, I explained to him the significance of the white kurta - lehenga is to serve spirituality by sacrificing daily pursuits and not a celebration of Gandhi’s dandi-march. Furthermore, I

pointed out the significance of Samvatsari pratikraman is to promote universal truth and brotherhood. Swami was quite excited to know that Samayika is another form of meditation where one reflects on his spiritual journey. However, he was quite shocked to learn that Jains don’t eat anything during fasting (including rice!) After three days, I met him again on the last day of Paryushan festival -Samvatsari pratikaman. This time he was in white kurta - lehenga minus sunglasses and Reebok shoes. He spotted me between many other Jains and said, “I have been looking for you. Please forgive me for any offense in any way, knowingly or unknowingly in thought, word or deed. Micha..Miami…” “You mean Michammi Dukkadam?” I asked. “Yes. Mich-ami duk-adam,” he said with some more confidence. I replied with some regret, “Well. I must apologize for making fun of you. Michammi Dukkadam for all the intentional offense” Swami laughed for the first time and it became a Kodak moment. He said, “Thanks for introducing me to this wonderful festival. I don’t need google now, I might just call you for all the information.” I admired his willingness to learn but not so much his comparison of me with google. “You are not welcome.” His jaw dropped within nanoseconds of that statement. “I am kidding,” I continued, to bring his Colgate smile back. I drove Swami to the airport the next day and asked him to share this knowledge with his colleagues. In return, he promised to send me the recipe of pongal rice and rasam. I felt good about the fact that I managed to purify my soul to some extent by introducing Swami to the paryushan festival and inspiring him to attend Samatsari pratikaman.

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Jain Recipes of the Month This issue: Paryushan Meals Upma Upma is made out of cream of wheat and resembles a very fine-grained bulgur wheat pilaf that can be as spicy as you want. It is generally served at breakfast but can easily be served at lunch, brunch or light dinner. Ingredients: 1 Cup of cream of wheat 1/2 cup crumbled tofu (if desired) 1/4 cup cashew pieces (optional) 1 1/2 teaspoon salt (according to taste) 1/2 teaspoon chili powder 1 teaspoon cumin seeds 3 tablespoons oil 3 cups water Microwave Directions: 1. In a 2 quart bowl, add oil, tofu, cumin seeds, chili powder, salt, and cashews and cook for 5 minutes on High in the microwave. Add water, cover, and cook for 12 minutes. 2. Remove from the microwave. Mix well. Slowly add the cream of wheat while stirring constantly for about 1 minute. You will see the cream of wheat becoming thick 3. Cover and cook in the microwave for 3 more minutes (or until smooth and cooked). Serve warm.

Khichadi Khichadi is an Indian dish that contains a combination of rice and lentils. Ingredients: 1 1/2 Cups Rice (Basmati) 3/4 Cup Mung Lentils 2 teaspoons Salt (according to taste) About 7 cups water 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder For seasoning: 4 tablespoons oil 1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds 1 teaspoon mustard seeds pinch of asafetida (hing) 1 1/2 cups drained, mashed tofu (optional) 1/2 teaspoon chili powder (according to taste) 1/2 teaspoon garam masala Directions: 1. Wash rice and mung lentils separately. In a heavy pan add rice, mung lentils, salt turmeric powder, and cups of water. Cover and cook slowly for 40 to 50 minutes, or until lentils and rice are done. Add more water if needed. Stir occasionally to prevent khichadi from sticking. 2. In a small pan heat oil. Add seasoning and fry for about 30 seconds. Add tofu (if desired) and fry for 3 to 4 minutes. Add this to the khichadi and mix well. 3. Serve warm with yogurt if desired.

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YJA Convention 2010: A Grand Success Jai Jinendra! The 9th Biennial YJA Convention, sponsored by the Cherry Hill Jain Sangh (CHJS), was held from July 2-5, 2010 at the Hyatt Regency in New Brunswick, NJ. This convention's theme was, 'Inspire. Connect. Do the Jain Thing.' 710 attendees from ages 14-29, 100 volunteers and 60 guest speakers made this convention a visual and spiritual spectacle. The combination of thoughtprovoking daytime sessions, magical social events, sumptuous Jain food and marvelous decorations brought YJA conventions to a new

level. Attendees were treated to four days of making new connections with others from around the world, learning many different aspects of Jain dharma and leaving with a greater understanding of how Jainism plays a role in their daily lives. Thank you to each and every one of you who made this amazing convention reality. Re-live the memories through our Picasa Album at http://picasaweb.google.com/yjacochairs. We hope to see you at YJA Convention 2012!

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Paryushan for the Preoccupied by Hetali Lodya

It’s that time of year again. Paryushan, or Das Lakshan, the largest Jain holiday of the year, is coming up soon, and as phone calls from India asking ‘sata’ are added to our lives, green vegetables and potatoes are taken away. We prepare for fasting, prayer, and lots of introspection. But something else that is very important is starting for many of us – school. And as important as the ideas of eating before sunset, doing some sort of tap, and attending temple often are to us during this auspicious time, many times it’s not feasible or practical. So the big question is, how does one balance the real world and the spiritual one? The first step is to truly understand the motivation and intentions behind paryushan. Too often, we get caught up in the idea of doing as much tap as possible, doing samayik twice a day, etc. – we get caught up in quantity. It’s almost a competition to see who can do the ‘most’ paryushan. But unless the actions have some meaning behind them, they are of no use. Paryushan is a time to truly reflect upon what you have done each and every day, and how you can make your conduct better for the future. Technically, we could and should do that all year, so it’s important to take advantage of the time that is dedicated to this pursuit. To a large extent, what you do outwardly during paryushan is not as important – it’s what’s going on inside that counts. With that in mind, each and every one of us has to do what makes sense as individuals with the idea of creating that time in the day and that self discipline to truly reflect on our actions. Can’t take a vow to do ekasanu? Vow to eat your three square meals a day one sitting at a time, no snack breaks in between, and use those meals to reflect instead of thinking about everything you have to get done during the day. Can’t cut green vegetables out of your diet? Hey, sometimes salad is the only thing you can eat at college. Take a vow to avoid ice cream or your favorite dessert, and use the time that you would have spent eating to sit silently for a few moments and think upon your conduct. We’re all busy – we live in constant ‘go’ mode, and sometimes it seems like nothing can stop us. Use paryushan as a time to slow your life down – to create those opportunities for reflection and selfimprovement. It’s not about how much you do, but about the strength of intent behind it. So even if you only have time for ten minutes of prayer each day in your preoccupied life, use that time to truly bring your soul to a new level of understanding. Micchami Dukkadam to everyone, and best of luck on your spiritual journey ahead.

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Shital’s Educational Corner

By Shital Shah, YJA Director of Education ’09-’10 (Chicago, IL) essential activity is Swami Vatsalya, which How many days are in a year? is known as 365. How many days are honoring and Paryushan? 8. Did you ever respecting each think: can I devote just 8 days other. Although out of the entire year towards this can be my soul and religion? If not, let mistaken for it be a challenge! We are having big social dinners, the main message is to engrossed throughout our regular day-to-day have respect for each other. The last and most lifestyle with our school, jobs, friends, family or important essential is kshamapana or forgiveness. other responsibilities. During our normal routine, On the last day of Paryushan after we do we must also be accumulating infinite amounts of pratikraman, the first thing we say to each other is karmas not only throughout the day but the entire Micchami Dukkadam. We should ask for year. Jainism says that each day one should do forgiveness not only to our friends, but to those that pratikraman to get rid of each days’ karmas, but if we have hurt intentionally or unintentionally. One this is not possible, do it once a week. If this is not of the hardest things to do is to ask for forgiveness possible, do it once in three months. Even if this is to our enemies and friends, so it is one of the most not possible, Jainism sets out 8 days in the entire important aspects of Paryushan. year to have a chance to eradicate our accumulated karmas. During Paryushan, our focus should be on There are many aspects of Paryushan that a person our soul, so one may ask what should we do? can follow. The flexibility that Jainism entails is amazing. In my experience, it always has been most By definition, Paryushan means to stay close to important to follow whatever you can. In my eyes, your soul from all sides. Thus, there are 5 essential Paryushan is 8 days where one can devote their activities we can do. The first is Amari Pravartan or time towards their soul. We do our normal routine the act of non-violence. Not only does this mean all of the other days, but these days are truly set not to eat meat, but to avoid any rooted vegetables aside to read more, to avoid any intentional due to the amount of violence. Additionally, one violence we can, to meditate, to do pratikraman, can avoid stepping on grass or carpool to places and any other types of fast to control our sense. with a large group. The second essential activity is Most importantly, it is a time where we can start Attham Tap, which is defined as fasting for three with a clean slate by asking for forgiveness for any consecutive days. The main wrong we have done. Let this Paryushan be the message behind this is to control start of a new year for everyone. Here is a short our senses, especially our sense stuti to ask for forgiveness one can recite: of taste. Another activity is Chaitya Paripati, which means Khamemi savvajive, save jiva khamantu me, visiting and praying to different Mitti me savva bhuesu, veram majjha na kenai derasars in town with a group. This may be easier to I grant forgiveness to all living beings, accomplish in India, but May all living beings forgive me, nonetheless it can be possible if I have friendship with all living beings, there are multiple centers I have no animosity towards any living beings. nearby and one can go with a group. The fourth Inside Reflection on Paryushan

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YJA Executive Board 2010 - 2011

The new board convenes in Atlanta, GA to kick off a great year!

Mitesh Shah Co-Chair Atlanta, GA

Vaishali Shah Co-Chair Chicago, IL

Tejas Kadia Director of Project Development Washington, D.C.

Neil Shah Director of Fundraising Sterling Heights, MI

Rushit Doshi Director of Information Technology Los Angeles, CA

Aakash Shah Director of Public Relations Toronto, ON

Charmi Vakharia Mid-Atlantic Regional Coordinator

Niral Vora Northeast Regional Coordinator Montreal, QC

Pavak Shah Southeast Regional Coordinator Raleigh, NC

Apurvi Mehta Director of Events East Meadow, NY

Ami Maru Director of Publications Buffalo, NY

Vishal Mehta Midwest Regional Coordinator Ann Arbor, MI

Vruddhi Choksy Director of Finance Dayton, OH

Khushbu Vora Director of Education New York, NY

Ruchita Parikh South Regional Coordinator Houston, TX

Monroe Township, NJ

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Regional Updates

Latest news from our many regions!

WEST REGION

MIDWEST REGION

NORTHEAST REGION MID-ATLANTIC REGION

SOUTH REGION

Do you have a Facebook? Want to get updates on YJA-related activities in YOUR region? Join these Facebook groups! Mid Atlantic: http://www.facebook.com/ group.php?gid=134368451508 Midwest: http://www.facebook.com/ group.php?gid=220473044159 Northeast: http://www.facebook.com/ group.php?gid=2374692263 West: http://www.facebook.com/group.php? gid=75085160190 South: http://www.facebook.com/group.php? gid=45423252053 Southeast: http://www.facebook.com/ group.php?gid=50222388582 Toronto: http://www.facebook.com/ group.php?gid=2244892220

SOUTHEAST REGION

REGIONAL COORDINATOR CONTACT INFORMATION: WEST REGION Priyanka A. Shah - priyanka.arun.shah@yja.org MIDWEST REGION Vishal Mehta - vishal.mehta@yja.org SOUTH REGION Ruchita Parikh - ruchita.parikh@yja.org NORTHEAST REGION Niral Vora - niral.vora@yja.org MID-ATLANTIC REGION Charmi Vakharia - charmi.vakharia@yja.org SOUTHEAST REGION Pavak Shah - pavak.shah@yja.org

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South Region Fun!

Fun-filled events in Houston and Austin, Texas

On August 6th, 30 youth from across the South region gathered in Houston and Dallas, Texas for a fun evening of dinner, learning, and some bowling afterwards. In Houston, Bonita Parikh and Ruchita Parikh led an awesome session of intriguing questions on abortion and piracy of music. Followed by that, attendees ate an awesome, custom made Jain meal prepared by Ruggles Grill in Houston. If you're attending JAINA this year, head over to Ruggles Grill for the best meal you've ever had!! In Dallas, Puja Dharod gathered 18 awesome people from the region for an awesome meal at Applebees! The night in Houston ended with thrilling bowling games and some good times. Everyone had a great time and a lot of fun! - Paras Shah, South Regional Coordinator, 2008-2010

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Mid-Atlantic Region: Save the Date! Fall Camping Trip - October 9-11, 2010

This year’s Mid-Atlantic Camping Trip will be held during Columbus Day weekend from Saturday, October 9th to Monday, October 11th. The venue is at the beautiful Harmony Ridge Campground in Branchville, NJ. Save the date for this amazing event - you don’t want to miss out!

Register to Vote Today!

Young Jains of America partners with Rock the Vote

Rock the Vote's mission is to engage and build political power for young people in our country. To further this mission, Young Jains of America is partnering with Rock the Vote this year to encourage our young Jains to register to vote. If you are over the age of 18 and a U.S. citizen, please visit https://register.rockthevote.com/registrants/ new?partner=2737 and register today!

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Please Make a Contribution to YJA Today to Pass Jain Principles and Practice onto the Next Generation of Youth! Jai Jinendra! The Executive Board for the Young Jains of America (YJA) plans to be very active in bringing Jain principles to all youth across the country. We would like to take this opportunity to briefly discuss our current projects and how they will make a difference to the YJA community. •

National Swadhyay hosted by a group of scholars to raise awareness about Jain Principles and ideals and address youth problems, difficulties, and concerns.

Website Reconstruction to develop a professional website for Jain youth and create a forum to share Jain principles.

Regional Retreats from the East to West Coasts to instill a sense of religious and cultural pride among Jain youth.

Relay for Life, Habitat for Humanity, and volunteering at soup kitchens to allow youth to participate in charitable community activities.

National Dinners in Jain communities to encourage youth to both develop new friendships among Jain youth and strengthen current relationships within local Jain youth groups.

With the support of donors like you, YJA has grown to be the largest Jain Youth Organization in the World. For the YJA Executive Board, this an honor to be a part of a group that motivates and inspires countless lives. Please consider supporting our efforts with a personal contribution to YJA today. A contribution of any amount will provide tremendous support to instill a sense of among youth about their Jain heritage. The ultimate goal of the YJA Executive Board is to prepare today's Jain youth to become tomorrow's Jain leaders. Not only do we appreciate your donations, but the fundraising team would like to hear from you! Please e-mail fundraising@yja.org with your comments, suggestions, or recommendations for improvement by YJA. If you have any questions regarding Young Minds, please e-mail youngminds@yja.org. Jai Jinendra and Michhami Dukkadam. Thank you for your wonderful contribution. Best Regards, Young Jains of America Executive Board

Email: board@yja.org

Phone: 757-YJA-ORG1

YOUNG JAINS OF AMERICA CONTRIBUTION FORM Full Name: __________________________________________________________________ Company Name (Optional): ____________________________________________________ Address: _______________________________ City: ____________ ST: ____ Zip: ________ Daytime Phone: (______)______________ Evening Phone: (______)_______________ Email Address: _______________________________________

Please make your check payable to Young Jains of America and mail it to: Young Jains of America c/o Vruddhi Choksy 36 North Broad Street Fairborn, OH 45324

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Our Manifesto Young Jains of America (YJA) is a committee of Federation of Jain Associations in North America (JAINA) who puts emphasis on projects relating to Jain youth from ages 14-29. Our mission is: “to be recognized as a national and international umbrella Jain youth organization for establishing a network to share Jain heritage and religion through young people.”

YJA’s Objectives are: - To raise awareness about Jain ideals and principles in North America and the world - To create a forum for sharing Jain religion - To instill a sense of pride among Jain youth about their heritage - To address the problems, difficulties, and concerns facing Jain youth - To assist and to promote charitable community activities - To prepare Jain youth to become successful Jain leaders of tomorrow - To develop friendships among young Jains - To foster and strengthen local Jain youth groups

YOUNG JAINS OF AMERICA

Young Jains of America’s Readers 123 Jain Way of Life Everywhere, North America 01234