About the Show

That’s So Hindu interviews entrepreneurs and activists, politicians and professors, journalists, entertainers, spiritual teachers, and more on how Hinduism shapes their work and lives. All American. So Hindu.


That’s So Hindu is available to listen to on several leading podcast platforms. So pick your favorite and have a listen today:

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How yoga helped me survive two days lost in a frigid wilderness | Jolly Yogi Bose

In this episode Sheetal Shah speaks with Jolly Yogi Bose, who recently had to put her yoga training to the test after getting lost and separated from her partners on a hike in the Sierra National Forest. Jolly explains how she stayed warm and focused through the frigid ordeal though yogic breathing and meditation exercises and was ultimately rescued.


We’ve forgotten that Hindu teachings have given trans people a status equal to other genders | Anjali Rimi

In this episode Suhag Shukla speaks with Anjali Rimi, a South Asian, Hindu, Canadian-American woman of trans experience, based in the Bay Area. Anjali is the president and co-founder of Parivar Bay Area, America’s only trans-led, trans-centering queer organization. Parivar Bay Area focuses on centering trans-equity and economic justice within the Indian and South Asian diaspora.


After one week of violence, 335 Hindu temples vandalized across 33 districts in Bangladesh, with 7 Hindu priests killed

In this episode Deepali Kulkarni gets a report from one of HAF’s contacts in Bangladesh on the attacks directed and Hindus and Hindu temples in the past week, stemming from a social media post on Durga Puja. NOTE: This episode contains graphic recounting of physical and sexual violence experienced by Hindus in Bangladesh.


75 years after being published Autobiography of a Yogi still has something to teach us | Phil Goldberg

In this episode Mat McDermott speaks with author Phil Goldberg about the importance and legacy of Paramahamsa Yogananda’s Autobiography of Yogi, on its 75th anniversary of publication.


HAF Shop Talk: Suhag Shukla and Samir Kalra discuss Dismantling Global Hindutva + investigating Univ. of Pennsylvania violations of Hindu students’ rights

In this episode Mat McDermott talks with HAF executive director Suhag Shukla and HAF managing director Samir Kalra about last month’s Dismantling Global Hindutva conference, Hinduphobia in academia, and why HAF has filed a Title VI complaint with the Office of Civil Rights against University of Pennsylvania.


Tibetan people have been enduring unspeakable suffering under the illegal occupation by China | Tashi Dhondup

In this episode Deepali Kulkarni speaks with Tashi Dhondup. Tashi is Secretary of the Office of Tibet in Washington DC — a senior member of the Tibetan Government in Exile, now called the Central Tibetan Authority. They discuss the challenges facing the Tibetan people living under Chinese occupation, the CTA’s Middle Way approach in dealing with the government of China, and what the international community can do to help the Tibetan people.


The humanities keeps talking about Hindus without including our voices | Dr. Indu Viswanathan

In this episode Suhag Shukla speaks with Dr. Indu Viswanathan. They talk about the conference on Hinduphobia she helped organize at Rutgers University, the problems with controversial upcoming Dismantling Global Hindutva conference, and how Hindu practices and Hindus continue to be misunderstood by Western academia and researchers.


All about the 8 year-old Hindu boy charged with blasphemy in Pakistan + recent attacks on Hindu temples

In this episode HAF Human Rights Director Deepali Kulkarni speaks with a Pakistani Hindu leader, who for his safety wishes to remain anonymous, about the latest attacks on Hindu temples and Hindus in Pakistan, and what’s going on with the young Hindu boy charged with blasphemy.


Why are Indian South Africans being attacked? Part 2 | Yashika Singh

In this episode HAF Human Rights Director Deepali Kulkarni continues her exploration of the history of why Indian South Africans have been targeted in recent violence, speaking with South African Hindu community leader Yashika Singh.


Why are Indian South Africans being attacked? Part 1 | Lux Maharaj

In this episode HAF Human Rights Director Deepali Kulkarni speaks with South African Hindu community leader Lux Maharaj. They discuss the history of Indians in South Africa, and Africa more broadly, what led up to the looting and violence directed at South African Indians in the past few weeks, and what the Indian community there may be facing in the future.


Religious Freedom in Bangladesh 1971-2021: From Genocide to Today

This weeks show is the audio version of a side event HAF held at the International Religious Freedom summit, held in Washington DC last week. The focus of the panel is the 1971 Bengali Hindu Genocide and the ongoing challenges of the Hindu population in Bangladesh.


Through chanting mantra we awaken our heart to connect to the Divine heart | Jai Uttal

In this episode Mat McDermott speaks with Grammy-nominated musician, multi-instrumentalist, and world music pioneer Jai Uttal. They discuss Jai’s path through sacred chanting, the evolution of the Western kirtan scene over the past several decade, and the line that separates cultural appropriation and cultural appreciation.


To really focus, we have to train our minds and then practice what we’ve learned | Dandapani

In this episode Mat McDermott speaks with Dandapani, a former Hindu monk turned international speaker. They discuss the retreat center and botanical garden he’s founded, how we can learn to better focus our minds, Hindu practices for dealing with crisis, and the importance of employing reason on our spiritual journeys.


Pakistani terrorism doesn’t just kill Indians, it kills Americans too | Dr Michael Rubin

In this episode, a rebroadcast of a recent HAF webinar, Samir Kalra speaks with Dr Michael Rubin, from the American Enterprise Institute, on contemporary politics in Pakistan and the region, the nation’s support for terrorism, and how this affects the United States.


The study of caste has given a false foundation to Indian culture | Dr Prakash Shah

In this episode Suhag Shukla speaks Dr Prakash Shah (Queen Mary, University of London). They discuss the Western conceptions of caste in India, the complexity of adding caste discrimination to law in both the UK and the US, and much more.


Homophobia in India is a homophobia of ignorance | Ankit Bhuptani

In this episode Suhag Shukla speaks with Ankit Bhuptani, the chairman and founder of the Queer Hindu Alliance in Mumbai, India. They speak about being gay in India, the state of homophobia there, how the LGBT+ community is treated by both major political parties in India and much more.


If you don’t have Hindu representation on your college campus, create it for yourself | Shreya Mahasenan

In this episode Sheetal Shah speaks with Shreya Mahasenan, a junior at McGill University, in Montreal, Canada. Shreya founded the McGill Dharma Society, when she realized there was no Hindu representation for students.


No country is perfect: We’re working towards a more perfect union in the US and so is India | State Rep. Padma Kuppa (D-MI)

In this episode Taniel Koushakjian speaks with Michigan state representative (and former HAF board member) Padma Kuppa. They discuss Rep. Kuppa’s journey from being an engineer to the first Indian American elected to the Michigan legislature, her passion for environmental advocacy, and her newly introduced legislation recognizing Diwali, Vaisakhi, Lunar New Year, and Eid in Michigan.


Hinduphobia is real and here’s how to recognize it | Parth Parihar

In this episode Mat McDermott speaks with Parth Parihar. Parth is a member of the Board of Trustees of Hindu Students Council and a PhD candidate in economics at Princeton University. Earlier this spring he organized, along with Dr Indu Vishwanathan, a conference on Hinduphobia at Rutgers University, which brought together a wide range of speakers on the topic.


Hindus have a responsibility to modernize chanting for their own families | Shivali Bhammer

In this episode Sheetal Shah chats with Shivali Bhammer, the youngest recording artist to be signed by Sony BMG for bhajans and one of the Top 25 Under 25 South Asian music artists.