[INDOLOGY] Fwd: [RISA-L LIST] Sad news . . . Today Tom Hopkins as passed on

Dominik Wujastyk wujastyk at gmail.com
Mon Feb 22 02:48:44 UTC 2021

---------- Forwarded message ---------
From: Schweig, Graham <gschweig at gtu.edu>
Date: Sat, 20 Feb 2021 at 13:52
Subject: Re: [RISA-L LIST] Sad news . . . Today Tom Hopkins as passed on
To: risa-l at lists.sandiego.edu <risa-l at lists.sandiego.edu>

Saturday, February 20, 2021

Dear Friends:

It is with much sadness (but also many sweet memories!) that I report to
all of you that our beloved colleague and friend Tom Hopkins gently passed
away this morning in his asleep at the age of ninety-one. A couple of
months ago, Tom suffered a stroke, but appeared to be recovering quite
steadily and well from it, so his departure today comes unexpectedly.

Tom was born on July 28th, 1930 in Champaign, Illinois. He was married to
Fran (Skinner) Hopkins on December 22, 1956. Together they had four
children, five grandchildren, and even four great-grandchildren. He will be
very missed by all of them.

Tom's colorful educational background can be spelled out as follows: Tom
earned his B.S. in Physics in 1953, and went on to MIT earned a B.S. in
Mechanical Engineering in the same year. He then went on to Yale Divinity
School to earn his B.D. in Religion and Culture, and then completed the
M.A. in 1959 and the Ph.D. in 1962 in Comparative Religion from Yale
University Gradue School. His unpublished dissertaion is entitled, *The
Vaishnava Bhakti Movement in the Bhāgavata Purāṇa. *

>From 1961 to 1996, Tom taught in the Religious Studies Department at
Franklin and Marshall College, in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, where he also
served as department chair from 1974 to 1994. From 1998 to 1999, he was
Director of Academic Affairs for the Oxford Centre for Hindu Studies, an
indendently recognized centre by Oxford University, where he acted as
liaison between the Centre and various Oxford academic program, tutored two
graduate students, and gaive a seminar and series of lectures on Hinduism
under the auspices of the Faculty of Theology of Oxford University.

His chapter, entitled, "The Social Teaching of the Bhāgavata Purāṇa," was
published in a landmark publication in the field at the time,
entitled, *Krishna:
Myths, Rites, and Attitudes, *edited by Milton Singer (published by
East-West Center Press, 1966, and then in softcover edition by University
of Chicago Press, 1969). Among Tom's many publications, he is perhaps most
well-known for his book, *The Hindu Religious Tradition, *originally
published by Dickenson Publishing Co. in 1971, used in the classroom as a
standard textbook by so many colleagues. During his last years of life he
had practically doubled the size of the book to produce a second edition to
bring his work up to date with current research. Over the past year, I have
been in the process of working on Tom's behalf to get this second edition
published, and will continue to do this for him.

Many of us in the field knew him back in those days when he was a very
active and vibrant participant at every annual international meeting of the
American Academy of Religion (AAR). In fact, he was a member of the AAR
from its very inception back in 1963, up until 1990. I myself remember him
very well when I started attending the AAR 1977, and was amazed by his
generosity toward budding graduate students as well as his wise counsel to
accomplished scholars in the field and to the Academy as well. His
personality was warm and intellectually active, and had a tempered sense of
humor that was enjoyed by everyone. He was very gregarious, a good friend
to so many, and just an example of the finest of humanity. And though he
has been retired for well over twenty years, his contribution of mind and
heart will never be forgotten and will always be remembered especially by
those whose intellects and hearts he has touched.


P.S. The picture below is Tom (right) and I in his library at his home in
Lancaster, Pennsylvania, taken about two years ago, when he was eighty-nine
years of age.

Graham M. Schweig
Distinguished Teaching & Research Faculty
Senior Editor, *Journal of Vaishnava Studies*
  The Mira & Ajay Shingal Center for Dharma Studies
Professor of Religion
Director of Studies in Religion
  Department of Philosophy & Religion
Director of Theology
  Avanti Schools Trust Schools
  Edgware, United Kingdom

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