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Category Archives: Basics

What’s your VARNA quotient?


What’s your IQ? What’s your EQ? These days we are also asked about SQ (spiritual quotient). These IQ, EQ, SQ  are available today only to measure our aptitude, emotions, spirituality etc. But there is a quotient that was discovered thousands of years ago in India, which is based on natural order of things. It is the VQ ~ the Varna quotient which is simple, logical and provides a template to understand oneself.

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


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.?

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.

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?

The $20 billion Indian gym for the MIND

Tanjore temple

More than $20 billion worth of wealth in a temple? That’s the account of hidden wealth in the 8th century Shree Ananta Padmanabhaswamy temple in Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala. But this abundance of wealth has not been unusual in the history of some Indian temples. While ancient Indian temples were built as spiritual gymnasiums for the mind, they also had enormous wealth to consistently provide that opportunity for spiritual development. But there are other types of wealth in the ancient Indian temples that are much more valuable than its material wealth. What’s that?

Indian Culture – What’s that?

Is there more to Indian culture than just bollywood, curry, yoga or samosas.

A tourist from overseas wishes to see ‘true’ India and wants to experience the real Indian culture. So he goes to a village in Rajasthan. He is hungry and goes to an old lady who is making Bajre ki Roti. She gives him some ‘Sarson kaa saag’ on the not-so-soft ‘Bajre ki Roti’. The tourist eats the ”Sarson kaa saag’ and returns the roti saying, ‘Here is your plate’.  Obviously he never heard of the bajre ki roti and his response was but natural.  But is this an authentic search for real India or it is just an example of a pedestrian tourist experience of Indian food, costume, tradition, festivals of the land etc?

Heritage of ancient Hindu temples


India has millions of temples, thronged by millions of people. If there is anything great and concrete that has survived the rigors of time in India, then it is surely our ancient Hindu temples. Of the millions there are many ancient temples with a deep history, fascinating legends and where famous saints have gotten their ultimate experience of the ‘Supreme Truth through the installed deity’.

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