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Monthly Archives: December 2011

New Year ka funda

01012012

Many of us from India celebrate more than one New Year. Besides the 1st of January every year, we also celebrate another New Year day based on the region we come from in India and the Indian calendar. What are the origins of this Indian calendar which has been around for more than 5000 years? Who invented it? What is it based on?

Why ‘Shri and Shrimati’ does not mean ‘Mr. and Mrs.?

shri

These days, the terms ‘Shri’ and ‘Shrimati’ are found printed only in wedding and invitation cards. These terms are more than a title prefix before a person’s name as they have a much deeper meaning. Hence it’s no wonder that atleast languages in South East Asia use this term ‘Shri’.  What does ‘Shri’ and ‘Shrimati’ really mean and why it is not really equivalent to Mr. and Mrs.?

The Guru of the world is still online

cave-19

How many civilizations have survived a foreign rule or a religious hegemony without cultural carnage or genocide? The extinct civilizations of native Americans, native south Americans and Africans is a case in point. Imagine a civilisation at gunpoint with political slavery to outside forces for over 1000 years and ravaged in every way possible? What do you think would have happened to that culture, lifestyle, language and traditions after centuries of foreign rule?

A black cat crosses your path!!! Now what?

black-cat

Do you care if a black cat crosses your road? Would you dare to step on lime and green chillies? Why is a north facing house believed to be lucky? Are these omens just mere imagination? We know that there are no real answers to these superstitions as they are irrational beliefs that defy all known logic.

Why temples? Why Idols?

Lord Jagadeeswara

The Indian terms for temple are mandir, ambalam, koil or kovil, deool, devasthaanam, devaalaya etc depending on the regional language. The commonly used word ‘Mandir’ comes from the Sanskrut root ‘Mandaté’, which means to be filled with transcendent emotion, to delight or to shine.

15th August ~ A day to bust some myths about India

indian_flag

The pedestrian view of real India is changing as we are coming to know more about Indian heritage. Thanks to some recent archaeological research, discoveries on linguistics, new satellite imagery and some objective historical research that the last two decades has seen the myths about Indian culture and heritage smashed.

Navratri ~ The festival of victory

Hosaholalu-Mahisasuramardini

Navratri ~ Festival of nine sacred nights

These days we hear a lot about expensive workshops that help harness the powers of our own mind. Our Indian culture offers the same transformation but only if we understand the deep significance and true meaning of our festivals, invocations and the accompanying rituals etc, with guidance of a Guru.

Dinner with Mahatma Gandhi….anyone?

Gandhi's Autograph

2nd October is Gandhi Jayanti when India marks the birth of the father of the nation, Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi – who spearheaded the country’s Freedom Movement for Independence from British Rule.

Understanding CASTE ka chakkar

varna 4_shaloka_013

Caste is not an Indian term. The real story behind the caste system is glaringly different to what we know. Was it called the caste system then? What was its original purpose? Was the system rigid? Was it designed to breed discrimination or inequality? Was there any merit in having a so-called caste system? Could people move between these so-called castes? Caste ka real story kyaa hai?

How to look at life through Krishna’s eyes?

somnathpur_krishna_sculpture.medium

21st of August is Janmashtami – the birthday of the smiling Lord Krishna. He is the poster-boy of the Hindu pantheon whose life and teachings teach us how to live life the smart way and holistically. Right from his birth in a prison cell, his life has been full of mighty challenges, but as a liberated soul Lord Krishna smiled his way through life’s situations unaffected. Behind his responses and smiles lies a philosophy that he personally advised to many of his close friends and devotees? What is this philosophy that will help us look at life through Lord Krishna’s eyes?

Ganapati Bappa calling

av-mayureshwar

Ganesh Utsav perhaps provides a platform for the biggest display of God symbolism on earth. The ten day Ganesh Utsav is probably the only festive period when we see most idols of any Hindu deity. In Hinduism, art & sculpture has been traditionally employed from Veda Vyasa’s time to help us discover the hidden meaning of subtler truths. Given this Hindu methodology of communicating the greater truths through arty idols, Lord Ganesha with the elephant head on a human body also relay something deep and esoteric. What is the heart behind the art of Ganesha?

How Indian men can make masala CHAI?

chai-cutting

Here’s a recipe for Indian men to make their own tea.

Not that Indian men don’t make tea at all, but some do loathe going to the kitchen. Here’s a simple recipe especially for those Indian men.

YOGA ~ India’s first global brand

Yoga-Swami-Sivananda

Of all the global Indian brands, YOGA is perhaps the most recognized quality product exported for everyone’s wellbeing. YOGA like many things cultural is a product of an ancient & continuous 5000 year old Indian civilisation and yet quite modern with the backing of science.

INDIA – What’s in a name?

old-india-map

>> A Blast from the past

What is in a name? Very much if the wit of man could find it out.”‘ Whoever penned this well known saying undoubtedly had it right. While a rose by any other name would surely smell as sweet, so does any name ~ even if it be the name of country like India.

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