Coalition of Hindus of North America

Community Unites Against Hinduphobia and Antisemitism at Interfaith Toronto Event

May 21, 2024, Toronto — In a significant gathering aimed at strengthening intercommunity ties, Hindu and Jewish community members came together for “Building Bridges: Hindus and Jews in Conversation,” at the Jewish Community Centre Toronto, hosted by Tafsik, a grassroots humanitarian organization dedicated to combatting the alarming rise of antisemitism. The event addressed the concerning rise of Hinduphobia and Antisemitism in Canada, emphasizing the urgent need for solidarity against these forms of bigotry and discrimination against minorities.

“Hindu philosophy, rooted in the eternal laws of nature, offers profound solutions to contemporary issues. In today’s world, teetering on the brink of self-destruction, Hindu principles of Karma (Deeds), Dharma (Duty), and Sahishnuta (Tolerance) are crucial for achieving inner peace, harmony, and happiness,” said Rishabh Sarswat, CoHNA Canada President.

Amir Epstein, the Executive Director of Tafsik, discussed the commonalities between Hindu and Jewish cultures, and stressed the importance of the shared experiences between the two communities. Saraswat highlighted the rise of Hinduphobia in Canada, with many Jewish community members expressing shock at the Hindu Canadian experience. Epstein emphasized that Canadian media often fails to report on the numerous hateful attacks the Hindu community has faced in recent years.

Also present at the event was Andia Spindel, the Executive Director of the Canadian Antisemitism Education Foundation (CAEF), who highlighted the common actors behind the attacks on Hindu temples and synagogues in the Greater Toronto Area in recent years. 

Epstein stressed the need to jointly combat hate and promote inclusivity. He added, “It’s imperative that we continue to forge strong alliances against all forms of hate. Together, we are stronger and more capable of making a meaningful difference.”

As both communities navigate the challenges of increasing hate in Canada, such initiatives are crucial not only in raising awareness but also in laying down the groundwork for a united front against bigotry and hate. This event marked a pivotal step towards fostering mutual respect and understanding, paving the way for an inclusive and harmonious future in Canada.

About CoHNA Canada

CoHNA (Canada) (pronounced: “Kohnaa Canada”), a registered NFP (Not-for-Profit) in Canada, is a grassroots advocacy group representing the Hindu community of North America. The coalition seeks to protect the collective interests of the Hindu community by working on the issues faced by them and educating the public about Hindu heritage and tradition. For more information, please visit https://cohna.org. Follow us on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and on Instagram