I would like to express my gratitude towards the Senate for allowing a Hindu to open proceedings with a prayer to, I imagine, Hindu gods, whose mythological power is no less than the mythological power of any divinity yet imagined by humanity in their drive to ascertain the mysteries of existence.
Personally, I think that the nature of the divine is probably a question for theology departments around the world, but as long as the Senate insists on praying to something like the divine, I am heartened to know that they are open to allowing religions other than Christianity to express their own thoughts on the very idea. We are, after all, a nation of disparate spiritualities, and no matter how small a minority might pray to a minority's god, I think it is absolutely necessary to allow minorities to open the door not only of tolerance but of critical thought, which must follow when one is faced with the myriad instantiations of divinity within human accounts of what it might be.
I hope that this gesture gives those pause who would stipulate that because the majority of the nation claims to be Christian, none of the rest of us should be allowed to practice openly, publically, and officially, those rites or rituals which we feel are appropriate to our own understanding of things spiritual.
As long as a religious creed espouses freedom of expression, non-violence and the amelioration of suffering, I think it should have a place in public affairs. Hinduism certainly fits this bill. There are many others that do as well--perhaps the Senate might be called upon to practice Zen meditation prior to proceeding with business at some point in the future.