Conflict, Peace and Hindu Philosophy

The online MA program will be launched in the Spring semester, starting from January 2017.

Mahatma Gandhi Center for Non-Violence, Human Rights and World Peace

MASTER OF ARTS IN CONFLICT, PEACE AND HINDU PHILOSOPHY offered by the Hindu University of America enriches the discipline of Conflict and Peace Studies by providing a Hindu perspective. By becoming more inclusive and pluralistic, conflicts at various levels can be approached more creatively.


MGC-5001 Introduction to Conflict and Peace Studies                      3 credits

This course introduces students to the theories of conflict and peace. Conflict is omnipresent in human relations. They are neither inherently good nor bad, but simply facts of life. A conflict situation arises when individuals or groups pursue incompatible goals. When competition turns violent, conflict resolution becomes essential as the costs rise with short term and long term implications. This course will introduce some of the leading theories of conflict and conflict resolution across several disciplines, and the subsequent methods for addressing conflicts that these theories may prescribe. The goals of this course are threefold: to introduce students to the background and characteristics of conflict and peace studies; to explore the multitude of tools and explanations used by scholars in order to understand peace and conflict; and, to encourage students to explore a complex and interesting subject in their own way while drawing on the existing theories.

HUC 5001 Principles of Hinduism                                                          3 credits

An overview of Hinduism – Perspectives of analysis and presentation in its name, meaning, characteristics; Hinduism source works – overview of basic Hindu scriptures; select reading from source scriptures like Veda’s, Upaniṣhads, Epics, Smṛiti’s, Bhagavad-Gītā, Purāṇas, Dharma-Śhāstras; life styles, profession and progression (Varṇa-Āśhrama Dharma, Jātii, Puruṣhārtha), rights and obligations (Dharma, Karma, Ṛiṇa, Pāpa, Puṇya, Svarga, Naraka), God, Demigods and incarnations (Avtāras); spirituality practices through four yoga paths Jñāna, Karma, Bhakti & Rāja; religious traditions inspired by Vedic practices – Buddhism, Jainism, Sikhism, subaltern religions; overview of major Hindu philosophical and faith traditions (six darśhanas, Āstika-Nāstika matas), Karma theory providing a vision beyond one unit of life-death cycle, one sacred book; concept of Yajña-Dāna-Tapas, Hindu scientific traditions, cultural and literary heritage.

This course will focus on major elements of Hindu philosophy particularly pertaining to conflict resolution and peace.

MGC-5002 Theory of Gandhian Conflict Resolution                                3 credits

This course examines the elements of Gandhian conflict resolution and its application. The relevance of Mahatma Gandhi for the contemporary world is undisputable. The contemporary global problems such as religious extremism and terrorism, migration and refugee crisis, environmental degradation, and pandemics defy national borders. They also bring forth the urgency of the Gandhian principles of non-violence. The words of Nelson Mandela are very pertinent in this context, “The enemies that Gandhi fought – ignorance, disease, unemployment, poverty and violence are today common place…Now more than ever is the time when we have to pay heed to the lessons of Mahatma Gandhi.” The course will bring to the learners a broader understanding of the Gandhian principles and their problem-solving aspects, and their relevance for the contemporary world.

HUC-5004 Research Methodology                                                           3 credits

This course will provide basic literacy in research methods to students, and enable them to become critical consumers of literature, and help them in writing their Master’s project/thesis.

All students must choose one of the following options:

1. Master’s Project

Final Project and Workshop    6 Credits spanning 2 semesters
Plus 6 elective and/or topical course choices (18 credits) required to complete degree, 3 of which must be from HUA course offerings.

2. Master’s Thesis

Final Project and Workshop   3 Credits
Master’s Thesis in Conflict Resolution – Independent study with faculty advisor  3 Credits
Plus 6 elective and/or course choices (18 credits) required to complete degree, 3 of which must be from HUA course offerings.


Elective courses offered in any given year will vary. Graduate courses taken in other areas offered at HUA or at other universities may be accepted for transfer credit with prior approval of the HUA office. Any course offered at HUA will automatically qualify for elective credit.

  •  Religion, Conflict and Peace: An Introduction
  •  Yoga and International Peace
  •  Mahatma Gandhi: Life and Philosophy
  •  Mahatma Gandhi and Contemporary Global Issues
  •  Sri Aurobindo, Conflict and Peace
  •  An Introduction to Conflicts in South Asia
  •  Kashmir Conflict: Dimensions, Costs and Peace Prospects
  •  Factoring Gender in Conflict Resolution
  •  Swami Vivekananda, Conflict and Peace
  •  Negotiation
  •  Culture and Conflict Resolution
  •  Conflict Resolution – Focus on a Case Study
  •  Role of Institutions in Addressing Conflicts
  •  Universal Themes in Hinduism
  •  Gita: A Document of Conflict Resolution and Peace
  •  Contemporary Hinduism and Conflict Resolution
  •  Gandhi, King and Mandela
  •  Hindu Scriptures on Conflict Resolution
  •  Media and Conflict
  •  Conflict Resolution: A perspective from Buddhism
  •  Conflict Resolution: A perspective from Jainism
  •  Conflict Resolution: A perspective from Sikhism
  •  Conflicts in Contemporary India

Topical Course Options

A faculty member can develop a course, which is not included in the elective course list. It can be a course on a theme such as war, environment, Yoga, or any theme which is relevant for the course and generates interest in students. These courses may have up to 3 credits.

36 credits required to complete program

For further details about the program, admission process, and program fee, please contact:

Dr. Debidatta Aurobinda Mahapatra
Director, Mahatma Gandhi Center
Hindu University of America
5200 Vineland Road, Orlando, FL 32811
Phone: 407-275-0013 (office)