News Releases


For Release Upon Receipt - September 9, 2009

St. Augustine

A book from a leading authority on Yoga and Meditation could contain principles for building a pluralistic society. “Wanam: Africa & India—A Spiritual Dialogue”, a book authored by Dr Swami Veda Bharati, has inspired an interactive symposium to be hosted by The University of the West Indies (UWI) St. Augustine Campus, Department of Behavioural Sciences.  

The symposium, titled “Wanam: Traditions in Conversation”, will take place on Friday 11th September from 9:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. at the Faculty of Social Sciences Lounge, UWI St. Augustine. It will include a series of 90-minute panel discussions, featuring panelists Professor John LeGuerre, Professor Prakhash Persad, Mr Peter Hanoomansingh, Rev. Hazel De Peza, Iya Shangowumi, Mrs Kamla Tewarie, Dr Althea Jones, Fr Martin Sirju, Mr Noble Khan and Raviji. The symposium is open to the public, and attendance is free of charge, but preregistration is required.

On the following day, Dr Swami Bharati will deliver the feature presentation at the book launch of “Wanam: Traditions in Conversation” from 4:00 to 6:00 p.m. at Daaga Auditorium, UWI St Augustine. Attendance to the book launch is by invitation only. A brief reception will follow at the Office of the Campus Principal.

For more information, please call (868) 662 2002 Ext. 2617 or 2539 or e-mail or Rachel.D'



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Dr Swami Veda Bharati B.A. (Hons) M.A. (London), D.Litt. (Holland), F.R.A.S., is no ordinary scholar. He is the Spiritual Director of The Association of Himalayan Yoga Meditation Societies International, Chancellor HIHT University, Dehradun India and Disciple of Swami Rama of The Himalayas. At an early age of twelve he mastered over twenty-thousand Sanskrit mantras. In the late 1950’s he lived in Guyana where he performed Yajnas.  Then, he was known as Pundit Usharbudh Arya. He received his Masters degree from the University of London, and later obtained a D.Litt. from the University of Utrecht.  He has traveled extensively studying spiritual/religious philosophies in their predominant/natural cultural settings. As a result, in his discourse, he draws freely from among the (twelve) known ecclesiastes—Zoroastrianism, Bahaism, Taoism, Shintoism, Confucianism, Judaism, Islam, Christianity, Hinduism, Sikhism, Buddhism, and Jainism.  He was has written extensively on various aspects of the spiritual paths, various types of Yoga and the Interfaith movement.  As a youth he was fascinated by African culture during a visit to the East African coast. Several years later serving as a spiritual guide to thousands in Guyana, Suriname and Trinidad, he felt a strong need to create an understanding of traditions between their peoples. This opportunity came when his teachings took him to Africa again, this time to the West Coast at a conference at Burkina Faso.  A leading authority on Yoga & Meditation, he has established centres all over the world with his headquarters at an Ashram in Rishikesh, India. He is eagerly sought after for his presence in creating a serenity through his meditation and lectures.


Over the last six decades, The University of the West Indies (UWI) has evolved from a fledgling college in Jamaica with 33 students to a full-fledged University with over 40,000 students. Today, UWI is the largest and most longstanding higher education provider in the English-speaking Caribbean, with main campuses in Barbados, Jamaica and Trinidad and Tobago, and Centres in Anguilla, Antigua & Barbuda, The Bahamas, Belize, British Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, Dominica, Grenada, Montserrat, St Christopher (St Kitts) & Nevis, St Lucia, and St Vincent & the Grenadines. UWI recently launched its Open Campus, a virtual campus with over 50 physical site locations across the region, serving over 20 countries in the English-speaking Caribbean. UWI is an international university with faculty and students from over 40 countries and collaborative links with over 60 universities around the world. Through its seven Faculties, UWI offers undergraduate and postgraduate degree options in Engineering, Humanities & Education, Law, Medical Sciences, Pure & Applied Sciences, Science and Agriculture, and Social Sciences.