Obama seeks Hanuman's blessing
It's unusual. But, it's a fact. Barack Obama, the presumptive Democratic party's presidential nominee, is seeking the blessings of Hindu god Hanuman in his battle for the White House.
The 46-year-old senator from Illinois, who defeated his rival Hillary Clinton in an epic 17-month long electoral battle for Democratic party nomination, carries a "tiny monkey god" apparently representing "Hanuman" with him for good luck.
A recent photo posted on Time's White House Photo of the Day collection shows the first ever Black-American nominee of a major US party for the Presidential elections carries with him a bracelet belonging to an American soldier deployed in Iraq, a gambler's lucky chit, a tiny monkey god and tiny Madonna and child.
That "tiny monkey god," of course, appears to be a statue of the Hindu monkey god, Hanuman, says the posting but editors and the photographer has not identified it as such.
Obama, whose father was a Kenyan and mother a white woman from Kansas, spent initial days of his life in Indonesia where Hinduism is a popular religion.
In addition to a lucky penny, Republican candidate John McCain carries a lucky nickel, and a lucky rubber band, which he wears around his wrist. He also has a lucky sweater and a lucky hotel room in New Hampshire, says the caption on his photo.
"People give Clinton lucky items all the time on the campaign trail," said a Clinton spokesman.
"Recently, for example, she's received a lucky coin, a lucky handkerchief that a woman in Texas gave to her that she sometimes keeps in her pocket, and a lucky bracelet that a woman in Ohio gave her that she wears every day. She keeps all of them."
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- Ministers from Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Latvia, Lithuania and Sweden said in their letter that the situation was "unacceptable" and "decreases the credibility of the vaccination process".