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psagarn
05-13-2012, 02:36 PM
Just pondering over what I have achieved by leaving India, my ancestors land, and settling in USA. Here are a few:


A great job where I don't have to work 12-15 hrs a day and where I do not have working weekends.
Liberty to live a life almost free of corruption, where I do not have to fear a traffic cop just because I am riding a motorcycle.
Access to great infrastructure where an hour of rain does not result in 5 hrs of traffic jam, where I get unlimited supply of electricity even in summer, where the taps run whole day.
And many more such visible and obvious benefits that I experience in my daily life here in America.

But thinking about what I left behind:


Evolutionary advantage that my ancestors and I had that was accrued during last, god knows how many centuries. My genes are native to Indian land and environment, and so are tuned to react in a better manner than if they were in an alien land, like America. I have given away something that might take 1000s of years to regain, and the worst part is that I took a decision not only for myself but also for my future generations. Will I and my future generations have to undergo the same evolution that my ancestors underwent over 1000s of years, back in India?

The culture that evolved over 1000s of years. All the festivals ...small pieces of wisdom like benefits of Tulsi, Turmeric, Jai-fal etc. .... things that we do back in India like a new Mom and her baby must not venture out for first 40 days. These are some of the non-trivial insights that our ancestors gained after careful observation over 100s of generations. Please do not dismiss these insights as superstitions just because we do not know the reason (or we lost the reason in between the generations of following them). Not only I am going to lose these traditions but I will also make my kids lose them too. Western civilization deeply believes in modern day medical science for which we often see commercials from attorneys offering assistance in claiming compensation against side effects of "wonder drugs". Frankly, I am not sure if modern medical science is a bane or boon but what I am sure about is that Indian wisdom regarding nature based medicines is not a bane.
Social practices that we have in India and the indirectly resulting values from them.


I am unable to decide what is best for me and my kids, staying here in America or going back to where my roots are. Thoughts?

go_guy123
05-13-2012, 03:40 PM
Posting garbage on IV....

Green_Always
05-13-2012, 04:02 PM
It all depends on your requirements and your choices !!

everyone has there own needs and adopt to circumstances as they go along.

There is no correct answer to your question, you will know the correct answer based on your needs and thinking, and many other factors relating to you specifically.

there are people staying here from past 50 years and some gone back after 5 years, they had there own needs and priorites.

psagarn
05-13-2012, 07:24 PM
Posting garbage on IV....
Appreciate your thoughtful response and all the time that you spent in coming up with these kind words.

InTheMoment
05-13-2012, 08:11 PM
Wonderful post psagarn. I loved your thoughtfulness or should I say awareness about the intricacies of the of the age old intelligent and enlightened practices and their value.

Only a few have the keenness to discern these.

Those who think your thoughts are garbage either don't have the patience to read thro' the whole post or have lost their grey cells to assimilate finer thoughts. Let them reel in their comfort zone!!

But yes... please do post things in the right forum in IV.

immigrant2007
05-13-2012, 08:58 PM
Just pondering over what I have achieved by leaving India, my ancestors land, and settling in USA. Here are a few:


A great job where I don't have to work 12-15 hrs a day and where I do not have working weekends.
Liberty to live a life almost free of corruption, where I do not have to fear a traffic cop just because I am riding a motorcycle.
Access to great infrastructure where an hour of rain does not result in 5 hrs of traffic jam, where I get unlimited supply of electricity even in summer, where the taps run whole day.
And many more such visible and obvious benefits that I experience in my daily life here in America.

But thinking about what I left behind:


Evolutionary advantage that my ancestors and I had that was accrued during last, god knows how many centuries. My genes are native to Indian land and environment, and so are tuned to react in a better manner than if they were in an alien land, like America. I have given away something that might take 1000s of years to regain, and the worst part is that I took a decision not only for myself but also for my future generations. Will I and my future generations have to undergo the same evolution that my ancestors underwent over 1000s of years, back in India?

The culture that evolved over 1000s of years. All the festivals ...small pieces of wisdom like benefits of Tulsi, Turmeric, Jai-fal etc. .... things that we do back in India like a new Mom and her baby must not venture out for first 40 days. These are some of the non-trivial insights that our ancestors gained after careful observation over 100s of generations. Please do not dismiss these insights as superstitions just because we do not know the reason (or we lost the reason in between the generations of following them). Not only I am going to lose these traditions but I will also make my kids lose them too. Western civilization deeply believes in modern day medical science for which we often see commercials from attorneys offering assistance in claiming compensation against side effects of "wonder drugs". Frankly, I am not sure if modern medical science is a bane or boon but what I am sure about is that Indian wisdom regarding nature based medicines is not a bane.
Social practices that we have in India and the indirectly resulting values from them.


I am unable to decide what is best for me and my kids, staying here in America or going back to where my roots are. Thoughts?

Sir decisions to settle are never to be taken in haste or wihtout thinking through, sometimes we are pre occuppied by one thought process that we are not able to think about the negatives of it of positives or the other one. Sometimes we lrean by experience, or may be it could be case of un fullfilled ambition or just pure luck. Every place has some good points about it. For genes I don;'t agree on becuase change is permanent everything else in temporary (even genes need change at some or many levels :-) )

permfiling
05-13-2012, 10:42 PM
Infact good thing you had brought this up as we here in US had just seen the tip of the iceberg which is recession, we have seen occasional racial tensions (hooded kid killed), we are seeing desi couples with kids getting divorced...it was always the race which wins, now in modern day ...earlier it used to be english , french and other Europeans expanding kingdoms. Now it is the raj of the country with intellectual,nuclear power. There is a good documentary by Moore on gun control and what do americans fear off and own guns. In the US, ppl don't have the same level of faith we have in india. For example, would you live in a predominately mexican/aferican american neighboorhoods ? Number of disturbed / physic cases are on the raise such as pedophiles, mass killings of people etc....

I think this is a very good topic to debate about as we are laying the ground for future generations of indians...

psagarn
05-14-2012, 05:32 AM
Wonderful post psagarn. I loved your thoughtfulness or should I say awareness about the intricacies of the of the age old intelligent and enlightened practices and their value.

Only a few have the keenness to discern these.

Those who think your thoughts are garbage either don't have the patience to read thro' the whole post or have lost their grey cells to assimilate finer thoughts. Let them reel in their comfort zone!!

But yes... please do post things in the right forum in IV.
Glad to see some support, I can probably say now that I am not paranoid. As for posting in the right forum, I thought I posted it under "Analysis Discussion", not sure how it landed under "Analysis Discussion > Retrogression, priority dates and Visa bulletins". Sorry about that. Not sure how to move it now, can any one do the needful, or let me know how to do it?

psagarn
05-14-2012, 05:41 AM
Sir decisions to settle are never to be taken in haste or wihtout thinking through, sometimes we are pre occuppied by one thought process that we are not able to think about the negatives of it of positives or the other one. Sometimes we lrean by experience, or may be it could be case of un fullfilled ambition or just pure luck. Every place has some good points about it. For genes I don;'t agree on becuase change is permanent everything else in temporary (even genes need change at some or many levels :-) )
Agree with most of what you wrote. Additionally, we can only think about what we know and as you would agree we grow wiser with the time...as each day teaches us new things. So, what we know today is far more than what we knew a few years ago, hence the need to revisit the decisions taken in the past. As for the change, it has a cost associated with it. When we switch/change the industry/profession that we work in, we pay in terms of time that we have to spend learning the tricks of the new trade. I am sure my future generations would be able to survive this new environment just as Europeans survived, the question is, Is it worth paying the cost?

sac-r-ten
05-14-2012, 09:18 AM
is such that, we are never satisfied with what we have. My friends in India are desperate to leave the country and settle anywhere on this earth. we here after jumping into the GC race trying to think about life in India/Indian values.
Don't get me wrong @psagarn, your thoughts are absolutely what they should be for a person whose left india many years ago, but as i said people are fed up in india and i have met people who had gone back and return to US as they found it v v difficult to adjust.

So wherever you are, you were destined to be there. Remember HE makes plans, not us.

good luck.

pillagandhi
05-14-2012, 09:51 AM
we are 1.3 billion people packed into a fertile land and we keep growing. Our country has enough faultlines through religion.caste.region,language etc to begin with. Clean water and power to all the citizens of india is still a mirage.As country moves from a low consumption to high consumption society, resource limitation will qucikly come into play.

states will start fighting with each other
regions within the state will start fighting with each other

For the richie rich US or India it does not matter it is equally good
For the poorest of the poor Us or India it does not matter it is equally bad

It is the middle/uppermiddle who can make a big change in their quality of life by moving from india to US. But even this is closing with the greencard mess.

We all move for upward mobility (Not necessarily financial) and pay a price for it (Retrogression/lost careers).We can only hope that our offsprings will have a better life.

This is the story of any ANIMAL on ANIMAL PLANET

gk_2000
05-14-2012, 12:16 PM
Most of you guys seem to be still inside their egg-shells.

And talking of changing your genes hints of admiration of white man. Have some self-respect. Moreover, this is NOT what America is about. America is about diversity, and we desis are free to follow all aspects of our culture here. It is your naive viewpoint that is to blame

Your other points -- great job etc -- are also your own: it is worthwhile to remember. America is different to different people. But there are lots of other philosophies that you are unaware of. There is a long story/history behind every concept that you see here. For example, gun laws. Do you know that people equate gun ownership as the guarantee of freedom and liberty? To understand better, take Syria as an example -- if people owned guns, they could fight better to liberate their country from dictator. Also, it would preempt any politician from trying any funny business

What I am saying is, you have a lens stitched to your eyebrow by being in India too long. If you want to truly understand this country you must mingle with the American people -- blacks, whites, browns -- everyone. Only then you can properly relate

thomachan72
05-14-2012, 12:38 PM
Most of the things you are saying you or your future generation will loose or miss after having settled here in the US are already being lost even by those staying in India my friend. Go to the schools/colleges these days and mingle with the youth in India. You will see no trace of the so called 1000 years of evolution (except for the remants of caste system). Some might not even know what turmeric is let alone its medicinal properties. So maintaining your roots and your culture/identity is not linked to where you live rather than how you decide to conduct your life. You can maintain all your evolutionary characteristics (good ones ofcourse not the terrible things like caste system/dowry/sati etc etc) while asmiliating into the western culture thereby helping refine the culture here and that is all about the improvment of the whole world. Bring the good and take the good from here to make a better you.

deepakd
05-14-2012, 12:44 PM
wonderful thread...

psagarn
05-14-2012, 12:46 PM
Most of you guys seem to be still inside their egg-shells.

And talking of changing your genes hints of admiration of white man. Have some self-respect. Moreover, this is NOT what America is about. America is about diversity, and we desis are free to follow all aspects of our culture here. It is your naive viewpoint that is to blame

Your other points -- great job etc -- are also your own: it is worthwhile to remember. America is different to different people. But there are lots of other philosophies that you are unaware of. There is a long story/history behind every concept that you see here. For example, gun laws. Do you know that people equate gun ownership as the guarantee of freedom and liberty? To understand better, take Syria as an example -- if people owned guns, they could fight better to liberate their country from dictator. Also, it would preempt any politician from trying any funny business

What I am saying is, you have a lens stitched to your eyebrow by being in India too long. If you want to truly understand this country you must mingle with the American people -- blacks, whites, browns -- everyone. Only then you can properly relate
Whose egg shell are you talking about or is it just a typo and you meant "your".
Changing the genes...who is changing them? May be you are getting confused between Genes and Jeans. You don't change the former, they get altered/evolved/mutated on their own and you don't have much control over them...that is how survival of the fittest works. Where as the latter one can be changed by paying a visit to a tailor.
Also, re: admiration of white man and having some self respect, I am not sure what made you make that comment. Why would you think that people here on this thread do not have self respect. May be it is because you are confusing Genes with Jeans.

Your statement about America having different meanings to different people does make sense though. For those escaping from religious persecution, it means religious freedom...for those facing genocide in their native country it means a chance to survive....and for a lot Indians, it means a better standard of living...you are right but most of us know that..there is nothing new in your statement. But how is the second amendment relevant to this discussion, I fail to understand.

Frankly, a big part of your message is incoherent and thus confusing...I am not even sure who are you talking about when you say "You". Is it people who have a doubt about long term, across generations, benefits of leaving their ancestors land or those that belong to the other side. Please clarify.

gk_2000
05-14-2012, 12:51 PM
Whose egg shell are you talking about or is it just a typo and you meant "your".
Changing the genes...who is changing them? May be you are getting confused between Genes and Jeans. You don't change the former, they get altered/evolved/mutated on their own and you don't have much control over them...that is how survival of the fittest works. Where as the latter one can be changed by paying a visit to a tailor.
Also, re: admiration of white man and having some self respect, I am not sure what made you make that comment. Why would you think that people here on this thread do not have self respect. May be it is because you are confusing Genes with Jeans.

Your statement about America having different meanings to different people does make sense though. For those escaping from religious persecution, it means religious freedom...for those facing genocide in their native country it means a chance to survive....and for a lot Indians, it means a better standard of living...you are right but most of us know that..there is nothing new in your statement. But how is the second amendment relevant to this discussion, I fail to understand.

Frankly, a big part of your message is incoherent and thus confusing...I am not even sure who are you talking about when you say "You". Is it people who have a doubt about long term, across generations, benefits of leaving their ancestors land or those that belong to the other side. Please clarify.

Way to go, friend. You have "told" me. Hope you are satisfied.

For the record, I did mean "your" egg-shells. You must be very bright, to have understood it.
I don't know where "Jeans" came from, unless that's what you meant in your first post

thomachan72
05-14-2012, 12:56 PM
For civility within our IV forums please remember that members that wish to bring issues or ideas for general discussion should expect counter arguments and be prepared to carry forward the discussion in a very polite manner. Anonimity shouldn't always be used as an excuse to downloads once frustrations or anger onto others. Please continue disputing or agreeing with each other politely.

gk_2000
05-14-2012, 01:07 PM
For civility within our IV forums please remember that members that wish to bring issues or ideas for general discussion should expect counter arguments and be prepared to carry forward the discussion in a very polite manner. Anonimity shouldn't always be used as an excuse to downloads once frustrations or anger onto others. Please continue disputing or agreeing with each other politely.

Excuse my lack of skill, if I have been un-polite. I would put that down to my need for tackling the real points of the debate, not getting side-tracked by remarks on spellos/grammo's.

To clarify to those who need it, I am saying that the OP's views are very narrow, and missing several important pieces of the "big picture". And that the "big picture" can be understood by understanding America better

psagarn
05-14-2012, 01:23 PM
Most of the things you are saying you or your future generation will loose or miss after having settled here in the US are already being lost even by those staying in India my friend. Go to the schools/colleges these days and mingle with the youth in India. You will see no trace of the so called 1000 years of evolution (except for the remants of caste system). Some might not even know what turmeric is let alone its medicinal properties. So maintaining your roots and your culture/identity is not linked to where you live rather than how you decide to conduct your life.
True but Youth is not necessarily the best age-group you want to ask about their culture. The fact that they do not know or care much about 1000s of years of evolutionary wealth now does not mean that it is lost. You should talk to the age group that matters most ..may be 35 to 60 or something. Check with them the benefits of Amla which is probably an alien fruit here in America. Talk to the old Granny about the benefits of trifala. The same youth you are talking about, convert into that all important age group which is when the better sense prevails and they realize the importance of age old traditions. This is what happened at least to me, not sure if it happened to others too.


You can maintain all your evolutionary characteristics (good ones ofcourse not the terrible things like caste system/dowry/sati etc etc) while asmiliating into the western culture thereby helping refine the culture here and that is all about the improvment of the whole world. Bring the good and take the good from here to make a better you.
Excellent point and may be the way to go forward. One problem though is that most of our culture and wisdom is undocumented and passed on to the next generation by word of mouth from one generation to another. There are subtle things that we do in a social set up in India which are not at all possible here in America just because there does not exist a large enough community. Things would be taught to the kids by their grand parents through stories and anecdotes. "Bahu"s would learn a lot on the job from their "Saas"s and there is no User Manual as such. You just can not do that here in America.

psagarn
05-14-2012, 01:41 PM
Way to go, friend. You have "told" me. Hope you are satisfied.

For the record, I did mean "your" egg-shells. You must be very bright, to have understood it.
I don't know where "Jeans" came from, unless that's what you meant in your first post
Let me assure you that offending others is not the purpose I started this thread for. I am genuinely interested in what others think and how they are handling this dilemma but when people start bragging that they are/know better than others (egg shells and "have some self respect") without adding any value to the discussion, that ticks me off. Hope you understand.

psagarn
05-14-2012, 01:51 PM
Excuse my lack of skill, if I have been un-polite. I would put that down to my need for tackling the real points of the debate, not getting side-tracked by remarks on spellos/grammo's.

To clarify to those who need it, I am saying that the OP's views are very narrow, and missing several important pieces of the "big picture". And that the "big picture" can be understood by understanding America better
It is not about understanding America, nowhere in my post I criticized America. It is about understanding yourself, your forefathers...understanding the importance of your roots and your traditions and your culture....understanding the importance of all the trivial, nonsensical things that do not make sense to you right now but they do to your parents...and their parents.

I am not going to sit here and try to convince each and every visitor...if you do not agree but at the same time do not have a solid reason for your disagreement, please ignore this crazy thread.

gk_2000
05-14-2012, 02:12 PM
Let me assure you that offending others is not the purpose I started this thread for. I am genuinely interested in what others think and how they are handling this dilemma but when people start bragging that they are/know better than others (egg shells and "have some self respect") without adding any value to the discussion, that ticks me off. Hope you understand.

I told what I told, because I assumed you are interested in what I think. And I think that you are very narrowly focused in your OP, and that there exists more information out there that can enlighten you

psagarn
05-14-2012, 03:13 PM
I told what I told, because I assumed you are interested in what I think. And I think that you are very narrowly focused in your OP, and that there exists more information out there that can enlighten you
Thanks for your helpful insight.

vikki_s
05-14-2012, 03:55 PM
My dear friend, OP, just a word of advice for you. I understand your desire to have a discussion on this etc. But, as I have commented in another discussion, sadly, returning to India, is one topic that a rare few are fortunate enough to have made a firm decision on. So, you cannot get advice from most of us, who ourselves dont know what we want to do. That internal conflict is only going to manifest itself as a series of pointless arguments. Why not save your time, and focus on your personal journey?
I understand your "need" for inputs, having gone through it. But, fortunately for me, I realised very soon that the only efficient way to reach a decision was to make it myself. I would advise you to do the same.

roni077
05-14-2012, 03:58 PM
PSAGARN,
This is a very refreshing post among all the anxious questions we usually see on this site :) Even though it's probably off topic for most people who come to this site (did I see someone write that you're posting garbage?), thanks a lot for posting this - gave me a pause and rethink some things.
The first 4 bullet points in your initial post are spot on. That's exactly why most of us are here. Excellent summary.
The worries that you allude to - I thought most of those go back to one concern - us and our children will lose touch with their heritage. Is that a good summary of your concern? If so, hasn't that been the favorite lament of our ancestors as well? Throughout time, the older generation complained that the younger generation lost touch and murdered our precious culture/history. Our parents said that with us, I'm sure their parents did too. And this was in India, without anybody going anywhere.
My point is - none of your concerns are exactly related to you living here - they would have happened even if you stayed in your hometown (trust me - no one cares about amla in your hometown these days). On the other hand, by giving your children exposure to other cultures/opportunities, you are actually doing them a huge favor, which your or my parents never could (Assuming you are not creating a little India in your home with only Indian TV channels and mingling with only Indian friends). Someone advised that we should mix with Ameircans more or something like that - even though the tone was a bit nasty, the gentleman (or lady) had a point.
Before signing off, couldn't resist one jab - you write "Bahus would learn a lot on the job from their Saass". Seriously? Have you talked to your wife lately? I dare you to find ONE wife (Indian, American, Mexican, Chinese any race/culture/age) who agrees with you. Clearly, you are a guy, and not a bahu :-)
Thank you for reading this tome :-)
- An Indian Guy

PavanV
05-14-2012, 04:21 PM
Just pondering over what I have achieved by leaving India, my ancestors land, and settling in USA. Here are a few:


A great job where I don't have to work 12-15 hrs a day and where I do not have working weekends.
Liberty to live a life almost free of corruption, where I do not have to fear a traffic cop just because I am riding a motorcycle.
Access to great infrastructure where an hour of rain does not result in 5 hrs of traffic jam, where I get unlimited supply of electricity even in summer, where the taps run whole day.
And many more such visible and obvious benefits that I experience in my daily life here in America.

But thinking about what I left behind:


Evolutionary advantage that my ancestors and I had that was accrued during last, god knows how many centuries. My genes are native to Indian land and environment, and so are tuned to react in a better manner than if they were in an alien land, like America. I have given away something that might take 1000s of years to regain, and the worst part is that I took a decision not only for myself but also for my future generations. Will I and my future generations have to undergo the same evolution that my ancestors underwent over 1000s of years, back in India?

The culture that evolved over 1000s of years. All the festivals ...small pieces of wisdom like benefits of Tulsi, Turmeric, Jai-fal etc. .... things that we do back in India like a new Mom and her baby must not venture out for first 40 days. These are some of the non-trivial insights that our ancestors gained after careful observation over 100s of generations. Please do not dismiss these insights as superstitions just because we do not know the reason (or we lost the reason in between the generations of following them). Not only I am going to lose these traditions but I will also make my kids lose them too. Western civilization deeply believes in modern day medical science for which we often see commercials from attorneys offering assistance in claiming compensation against side effects of "wonder drugs". Frankly, I am not sure if modern medical science is a bane or boon but what I am sure about is that Indian wisdom regarding nature based medicines is not a bane.
Social practices that we have in India and the indirectly resulting values from them.


I am unable to decide what is best for me and my kids, staying here in America or going back to where my roots are. Thoughts?

I had left India in 2000 never worked there, so cannot really tell how the working culture is out there, the thoughts you have are all valid, i can tell you you one thing though, this country will not easily assimilate you, and India will never abandon you, reason(s) ?, several, one glaring one is the green card mess, it takes a decade to get residency :), most have to swallow their egos/pride/ and live with the same job till they get their %&% card, it gets worse if you start to hate your job, goes back to the old adage, would you like to live like a beggar in a palace or king in a hut, i would choose the later any day, BTW the palaces are dilapidated and the hut are under renovation. Choose your side my friend, life is fleeting, let there be no regrets, nothing is permanent, have good friends and family, that is what matters the most.

psagarn
05-14-2012, 07:42 PM
My dear friend, OP, just a word of advice for you. I understand your desire to have a discussion on this etc. But, as I have commented in another discussion, sadly, returning to India, is one topic that a rare few are fortunate enough to have made a firm decision on. So, you cannot get advice from most of us, who ourselves dont know what we want to do. That internal conflict is only going to manifest itself as a series of pointless arguments. Why not save your time, and focus on your personal journey?
I understand your "need" for inputs, having gone through it. But, fortunately for me, I realised very soon that the only efficient way to reach a decision was to make it myself. I would advise you to do the same.
I must confess that even though the original intent of the thread was to see what other learned members think about this new perspective of the loss that one experiences when he leaves his roots, it turned into a fight between "America is better" and "India is the best" groups, and I am partially guilty too. Not many would agree that this is a new perspective but you need to understand the spirit of what I am talking here. It is not just about Amla or shikakai, it is much more than that. It is about all that our ancestors achieved...all that our people acquired in the process of natural evolution and adaptation and it is bound to the physical environment that we left behind. A very trivial example (and one that would probably be invalid in a cpl of generations) is that my kids would shiver in cold even in 50 degrees and I have to bundle them up where as the kid next door would come out in just shorts...if you still don't understand what I am talking here then please do not read further. Those who see what I am talking about would instantly agree or at least not be abusive, sadly others would be more like "Don't behave like a Desi", "come out of Mera Bharat Mahan syndrome".

Once again it is not a personal question that I am asking here, it is something that we all share, whether you realize it or not is another question.

UKannan
05-14-2012, 08:09 PM
Just pondering over what I have achieved by leaving India, my ancestors land, and settling in USA. Here are a few:


A great job where I don't have to work 12-15 hrs a day and where I do not have working weekends.
Liberty to live a life almost free of corruption, where I do not have to fear a traffic cop just because I am riding a motorcycle.
Access to great infrastructure where an hour of rain does not result in 5 hrs of traffic jam, where I get unlimited supply of electricity even in summer, where the taps run whole day.
And many more such visible and obvious benefits that I experience in my daily life here in America.


Gainer :D

But thinking about what I left behind:


Evolutionary advantage that my ancestors and I had that was accrued during last, god knows how many centuries. My genes are native to Indian land and environment, and so are tuned to react in a better manner than if they were in an alien land, like America. I have given away something that might take 1000s of years to regain, and the worst part is that I took a decision not only for myself but also for my future generations. Will I and my future generations have to undergo the same evolution that my ancestors underwent over 1000s of years, back in India?

The culture that evolved over 1000s of years. All the festivals ...small pieces of wisdom like benefits of Tulsi, Turmeric, Jai-fal etc. .... things that we do back in India like a new Mom and her baby must not venture out for first 40 days. These are some of the non-trivial insights that our ancestors gained after careful observation over 100s of generations. Please do not dismiss these insights as superstitions just because we do not know the reason (or we lost the reason in between the generations of following them). Not only I am going to lose these traditions but I will also make my kids lose them too. Western civilization deeply believes in modern day medical science for which we often see commercials from attorneys offering assistance in claiming compensation against side effects of "wonder drugs". Frankly, I am not sure if modern medical science is a bane or boon but what I am sure about is that Indian wisdom regarding nature based medicines is not a bane.
Social practices that we have in India and the indirectly resulting values from them.


I am unable to decide what is best for me and my kids, staying here in America or going back to where my roots are. Thoughts?

Loser :(

psagarn
05-14-2012, 08:11 PM
The worries that you allude to - I thought most of those go back to one concern - us and our children will lose touch with their heritage. Is that a good summary of your concern? If so, hasn't that been the favorite lament of our ancestors as well? Throughout time, the older generation complained that the younger generation lost touch and murdered our precious culture/history. Our parents said that with us, I'm sure their parents did too. And this was in India, without anybody going anywhere.My point is - none of your concerns are exactly related to you living here - they would have happened even if you stayed in your hometown (trust me - no one cares about amla in your hometown these days).
Yes, you are right. In every generation, youth gets chided for forgetting the values and culture and heritage but with most of them better sense prevails sooner or later. A perfect example would be you...did you too not hear these things from your parents but now looking at your post I do not think you value your heritage any less than me. If we were losing a bit of our culture with every generation, it would have been lost by now....but it is not. Young people are not the custodians of any culture's heritage, it is the much wiser and saner adult group that preserves it and instills it into their kids. I did not know about Amla till a few years ago i.e. when I was in my 20s but now I do and so do you.


On the other hand, by giving your children exposure to other cultures/opportunities, you are actually doing them a huge favor, which your or my parents never could (Assuming you are not creating a little India in your home with only Indian TV channels and mingling with only Indian friends). Someone advised that we should mix with Ameircans more or something like that - even though the tone was a bit nasty, the gentleman (or lady) had a point.

You have a point here re: giving our kids a chance to mingle with people from other cultures. The advise that others gave to mix up with Americans is just based on the assumption that I currently do not do that and hence have a limited friend circle. Let me assure that this is a totally wrong assumption.


Before signing off, couldn't resist one jab - you write "Bahus would learn a lot on the job from their Saass". Seriously? Have you talked to your wife lately? I dare you to find ONE wife (Indian, American, Mexican, Chinese any race/culture/age) who agrees with you. Clearly, you are a guy, and not a bahu :-)
Thank you for reading this tome :-)
- An Indian Guy
lol, you are right.

psagarn
05-14-2012, 08:13 PM
Loser :(
Thanks

mgmanoj
05-14-2012, 09:13 PM
Just pondering over what I have achieved by leaving India, my ancestors land, and settling in USA. Here are a few:


A great job where I don't have to work 12-15 hrs a day and where I do not have working weekends.
Liberty to live a life almost free of corruption, where I do not have to fear a traffic cop just because I am riding a motorcycle.
Access to great infrastructure where an hour of rain does not result in 5 hrs of traffic jam, where I get unlimited supply of electricity even in summer, where the taps run whole day.
And many more such visible and obvious benefits that I experience in my daily life here in America.

But thinking about what I left behind:


Evolutionary advantage that my ancestors and I had that was accrued during last, god knows how many centuries. My genes are native to Indian land and environment, and so are tuned to react in a better manner than if they were in an alien land, like America. I have given away something that might take 1000s of years to regain, and the worst part is that I took a decision not only for myself but also for my future generations. Will I and my future generations have to undergo the same evolution that my ancestors underwent over 1000s of years, back in India?

The culture that evolved over 1000s of years. All the festivals ...small pieces of wisdom like benefits of Tulsi, Turmeric, Jai-fal etc. .... things that we do back in India like a new Mom and her baby must not venture out for first 40 days. These are some of the non-trivial insights that our ancestors gained after careful observation over 100s of generations. Please do not dismiss these insights as superstitions just because we do not know the reason (or we lost the reason in between the generations of following them). Not only I am going to lose these traditions but I will also make my kids lose them too. Western civilization deeply believes in modern day medical science for which we often see commercials from attorneys offering assistance in claiming compensation against side effects of "wonder drugs". Frankly, I am not sure if modern medical science is a bane or boon but what I am sure about is that Indian wisdom regarding nature based medicines is not a bane.
Social practices that we have in India and the indirectly resulting values from them.


I am unable to decide what is best for me and my kids, staying here in America or going back to where my roots are. Thoughts?

I don't know from how many years you are here. I left india in 2000, I have not been again in last 5 years as I don't have EAD and all stamping issues keeping me here. The way all my freinds talk about changes in india and its culture, way the movies and hindi serials changing, news and all market changes I see from here. I don't see my old country any more, things has changed so much drastically - it feels like they are advanced and indian community here is behind in all other things. It's getting more and more western in india than here. So call will be yours what you want for yourself and your kids - definately its fastest growing economy and changing culture - you will be running at speed of marathon runner day and night. I have seen freinds going back and coming back within year or two unless you are able to mange huge income in india. People talking in thousands are talking in billions. Going for weekend parties of $200 to $500 every week is pretty common. if you can catch that high speed flight you will be flying in space else you will be in same boat after 2 more years. Luck and connections - both has to work together.

InTheMoment
05-15-2012, 11:06 AM
Here is my own wife and my mother who learned a horde lot intricacies about home medicine, traditional and subtle aspects of lifestyle, clothes, food and so much more from their own "saas". Things which they simply couldn't have know otherwise.

Looks like it is you who have completely lost touch with how tradition is passed from one generation to the other at least in India!

PSAGARN,
Before signing off, couldn't resist one jab - you write "Bahus would learn a lot on the job from their Saass". Seriously? Have you talked to your wife lately? I dare you to find ONE wife (Indian, American, Mexican, Chinese any race/culture/age) who agrees with you. Clearly, you are a guy, and not a bahu :-)
Thank you for reading this tome :-)
- An Indian Guy

roni077
05-15-2012, 11:15 AM
Hey PSAGARN -
"If we were losing a bit of our culture with every generation, it would have been lost by now....but it is not. Young people are not the custodians of any culture's heritage, it is the much wiser and saner adult group that preserves it and instills it into their kids."

You answered your concern right there yourself :-) Once your children grow up, they will be able to realize their heritage and the good values of their culture. Just the fact that they were raised outside of India won't hinder them. Actually, they will be better off with all the good things you speak of about America, coupled with all the heritage coming through the genes. In the truly flat world they will be in in 20 years time - this is the best situation you can put them in. You can teach them the good things and they will retain those in the subconscious until they get to their thirties. (Ideally. But who am I kidding? My kid is already teaching me more than I'm teaching her:-) )

It was nice debating a little bit with you. Take care.

vikki_s
05-15-2012, 11:58 AM
I think this line here highlights the point that I am trying to make, which is something you havent realized. It IS a personal question for each and everyone of us.
Every single desi amongst us has rehashed these pros and cons about a million times. Its not that we dont know the points you are trying to raise. Its just a therapy-like experience to talk about these repeatedly :)
Which is why, I am trying to help you - dont waste your time. Make your own decision and move on. As you have already seen from this thread, everyone knows the issues. its just that weightage differs from person to person.
Again, I know, it feels good to discuss this, but - its pointless :)



Once again it is not a personal question that I am asking here, it is something that we all share, whether you realize it or not is another question.

psagarn
05-15-2012, 12:17 PM
Once your children grow up, they will be able to realize their heritage and the good values of their culture. Just the fact that they were raised outside of India won't hinder them. Actually, they will be better off with all the good things you speak of about America, coupled with all the heritage coming through the genes. In the truly flat world they will be in in 20 years time - this is the best situation you can put them in.
what you say makes a lot of sense except that I am not sure how successful one will be in exposing ones kids to our culture when they are so isolated from true Indian culture, here in America. But thanks for your words of comfort, this has been bothering me for quite some time now and messages like yours do make a difference.

dhakaldoo
05-15-2012, 01:48 PM
I Could not resist. here is the first and last post from me in this thread.

No offense ment.

Every Coin Has 2 sides.

Being a women, and looking at the culture in India, I dare to say I would rather raise my daughter here in US than in india given an opportunity.
Those who sing songs about our culture is long lost. People are just naive.
Ask yourself, walking on the road how many times a girl has to save herself from ppl trying to touch her inappropriately. How many people welcome a girl child (in really not just for the sake of saying it. trust me my own relatives made faces when I said we want a girl)
In india the culture is applicable only to women many times. When you want to prevent women from doing something, you say, oh thats not in culture. when it comes to wearing clothes, they want women to wear sari cuz thats our culture and not jeans. Infact, sari is the most exposing and sexiest outfit where as a normal jeans n tshirt covers the body properly!!! When wives have to wear sari. Men can ogle at cheer leaders and actresses how so much they want !!
How many love marriages are actually welcomed? dont look at cities, look at over all.
A reporst showed some thousands of young children, boys and girls were sexually abused only in delhi alone.We are supposed to be worshiping animals and trees. But we still cut those trees for buildings dont we?
These are just few examples of how Hippocratic our or any culture can be.

Culture is about convenience to lot of people. It should not be. It should be evolving. It should take good things and discard bad ones.
This is why traditions such as child marriage, and Sati etc were discarded.

We have to accept the fact that not every thing about our culture is good.

Having said this, there are some very good things in our culture. Our history is rich, our fight for freedom is glorious. I miss the diversity, food, the festivals, the politeness, the languages, the traditional dresses..
I am good with all this as long as its not pushed on anybody.

Its your life. Dont make any decision and assumptions that Indian culture is good american is bad. after all it is Somebody's culture. Think carefully about what matters to you. Dont go back because you think kids will be safe there.
As far as cultural things go, kids here learn Indian instruments, dances, singing, were clothes, learn languages and what not. They are just as much disconnected as kids in cities are in india.
Worry more about making a good human being out of your kid rather. Thats what I am doing atleast!
One very good quote I came accross recently which translates as below,

Our country i divided into two parts. One is India and other is Bharat.
When india is making money and is fast pace, Bharat is still lost and struggling to keep up....

I am not sure if my post is comforting to you or not. But I hope you take both the sides of coin into consideration. Whatever you decide, make sure you are happy because you only got this one life!


Dhakaldoo

gk_2000
05-15-2012, 01:53 PM
Let me assure you that offending others is not the purpose I started this thread for. I am genuinely interested in what others think and how they are handling this dilemma but when people start bragging that they are/know better than others (egg shells and "have some self respect") without adding any value to the discussion, that ticks me off. Hope you understand.

Remember that in the online world it is the words one uses that accords him/her the respect. And from your and some others' posts it seemed like this feedback is due. If you're too offended to take it, it is upto you. OTOH is you want to introspect about it that is also entirely upto you. I will not be around, whatever you decide to do, so feel free

vshar
05-15-2012, 01:58 PM
I Could not resist. here is the first and last post from me in this thread.

No offense ment.

Every Coin Has 2 sides.

Being a women, and looking at the culture in India, I dare to say I would rather raise my daughter here in US than in india given an opportunity.
Those who sing songs about our culture is long lost. People are just naive.
Ask yourself, walking on the road how many times a girl has to save herself from ppl trying to touch her inappropriately. How many people welcome a girl child (in really not just for the sake of saying it. trust me my own relatives made faces when I said we want a girl)
In india the culture is applicable only to women many times. When you want to prevent women from doing something, you say, oh thats not in culture. when it comes to wearing clothes, they want women to wear sari cuz thats our culture and not jeans. Infact, sari is the most exposing and sexiest outfit where as a normal jeans n tshirt covers the body properly!!! When wives have to wear sari. Men can ogle at cheer leaders and actresses how so much they want !!
How many love marriages are actually welcomed? dont look at cities, look at over all.
A reporst showed some thousands of young children, boys and girls were sexually abused only in delhi alone.We are supposed to be worshiping animals and trees. But we still cut those trees for buildings dont we?
These are just few examples of how Hippocratic our or any culture can be.

Culture is about convenience to lot of people. It should not be. It should be evolving. It should take good things and discard bad ones.
This is why traditions such as child marriage, and Sati etc were discarded.

We have to accept the fact that not every thing about our culture is good.

Having said this, there are some very good things in our culture. Our history is rich, our fight for freedom is glorious. I miss the diversity, food, the festivals, the politeness, the languages, the traditional dresses..
I am good with all this as long as its not pushed on anybody.

Its your life. Dont make any decision and assumptions that Indian culture is good american is bad. after all it is Somebody's culture. Think carefully about what matters to you. Dont go back because you think kids will be safe there.
As far as cultural things go, kids here learn Indian instruments, dances, singing, were clothes, learn languages and what not. They are just as much disconnected as kids in cities are in india.
Worry more about making a good human being out of your kid rather. Thats what I am doing atleast!
One very good quote I came accross recently which translates as below,

Our country i divided into two parts. One is India and other is Bharat.
When india is making money and is fast pace, Bharat is still lost and struggling to keep up....

I am not sure if my post is comforting to you or not. But I hope you take both the sides of coin into consideration. Whatever you decide, make sure you are happy because you only got this one life!


Dhakaldoo

the best and most appropriate line in the post is:
Worry more about making a good human being out of your kid rather.

Thanks

gk_2000
05-15-2012, 01:58 PM
[like] this post. I am sure it reflects the opinion of a lot of women (my aunt is one of them)

I Could not resist. here is the first and last post from me in this thread.

No offense ment.

Every Coin Has 2 sides.

Being a women, and looking at the culture in India, I dare to say I would rather raise my daughter here in US than in india given an opportunity.
Those who sing songs about our culture is long lost. People are just naive.
Ask yourself, walking on the road how many times a girl has to save herself from ppl trying to touch her inappropriately. How many people welcome a girl child (in really not just for the sake of saying it. trust me my own relatives made faces when I said we want a girl)
In india the culture is applicable only to women many times. When you want to prevent women from doing something, you say, oh thats not in culture. when it comes to wearing clothes, they want women to wear sari cuz thats our culture and not jeans. Infact, sari is the most exposing and sexiest outfit where as a normal jeans n tshirt covers the body properly!!! When wives have to wear sari. Men can ogle at cheer leaders and actresses how so much they want !!
How many love marriages are actually welcomed? dont look at cities, look at over all.
A reporst showed some thousands of young children, boys and girls were sexually abused only in delhi alone.We are supposed to be worshiping animals and trees. But we still cut those trees for buildings dont we?
These are just few examples of how Hippocratic our or any culture can be.

Culture is about convenience to lot of people. It should not be. It should be evolving. It should take good things and discard bad ones.
This is why traditions such as child marriage, and Sati etc were discarded.

We have to accept the fact that not every thing about our culture is good.

Having said this, there are some very good things in our culture. Our history is rich, our fight for freedom is glorious. I miss the diversity, food, the festivals, the politeness, the languages, the traditional dresses..
I am good with all this as long as its not pushed on anybody.

Its your life. Dont make any decision and assumptions that Indian culture is good american is bad. after all it is Somebody's culture. Think carefully about what matters to you. Dont go back because you think kids will be safe there.
As far as cultural things go, kids here learn Indian instruments, dances, singing, were clothes, learn languages and what not. They are just as much disconnected as kids in cities are in india.
Worry more about making a good human being out of your kid rather. Thats what I am doing atleast!
One very good quote I came accross recently which translates as below,

Our country i divided into two parts. One is India and other is Bharat.
When india is making money and is fast pace, Bharat is still lost and struggling to keep up....

I am not sure if my post is comforting to you or not. But I hope you take both the sides of coin into consideration. Whatever you decide, make sure you are happy because you only got this one life!


Dhakaldoo

pardesibabu
05-15-2012, 02:06 PM
I have suffered separation pangs too from time to time which I'm sure every 1st generation immigrant faces. I know that it will be very hard for me to "move on" completely. My kids will most probably not bother about India much.

The decision to stay in US or India is completely a personal one. You have to answer that question for yourself. There are people leaving US and going back to India to resettle. At the same time, there are people who went back to India and then came back because they could not re-adjust. Its all personal.

slowwin
05-15-2012, 04:12 PM
I agree the decision or not to R2I is personal at Individual level. It is not right or wrong. The decision to R2I is themost suitable for an Individual and his/her situation.

Having said that, NOSTALGIA is what drives people to take a second look at the LIFE which they left/escaped from. Except for the money and glitz nothing has changed.

You would still need political pull besides money power to get any thing done in India (no matter who you are).

psagarn
05-15-2012, 07:13 PM
I Could not resist. here is the first and last post from me in this thread.

No offense ment.

Every Coin Has 2 sides.

Being a women, and looking at the culture in India, I dare to say I would rather raise my daughter here in US than in india given an opportunity.
Those who sing songs about our culture is long lost. People are just naive.
Ask yourself, walking on the road how many times a girl has to save herself from ppl trying to touch her inappropriately. How many people welcome a girl child (in really not just for the sake of saying it. trust me my own relatives made faces when I said we want a girl)
In india the culture is applicable only to women many times. When you want to prevent women from doing something, you say, oh thats not in culture. when it comes to wearing clothes, they want women to wear sari cuz thats our culture and not jeans. Infact, sari is the most exposing and sexiest outfit where as a normal jeans n tshirt covers the body properly!!! When wives have to wear sari. Men can ogle at cheer leaders and actresses how so much they want !!
How many love marriages are actually welcomed? dont look at cities, look at over all.
A reporst showed some thousands of young children, boys and girls were sexually abused only in delhi alone.We are supposed to be worshiping animals and trees. But we still cut those trees for buildings dont we?
These are just few examples of how Hippocratic our or any culture can be.

Culture is about convenience to lot of people. It should not be. It should be evolving. It should take good things and discard bad ones.
This is why traditions such as child marriage, and Sati etc were discarded.

We have to accept the fact that not every thing about our culture is good.

Having said this, there are some very good things in our culture. Our history is rich, our fight for freedom is glorious. I miss the diversity, food, the festivals, the politeness, the languages, the traditional dresses..
I am good with all this as long as its not pushed on anybody.

Its your life. Dont make any decision and assumptions that Indian culture is good american is bad. after all it is Somebody's culture. Think carefully about what matters to you. Dont go back because you think kids will be safe there.
As far as cultural things go, kids here learn Indian instruments, dances, singing, were clothes, learn languages and what not. They are just as much disconnected as kids in cities are in india.
Worry more about making a good human being out of your kid rather. Thats what I am doing atleast!
One very good quote I came accross recently which translates as below,

Our country i divided into two parts. One is India and other is Bharat.
When india is making money and is fast pace, Bharat is still lost and struggling to keep up....

I am not sure if my post is comforting to you or not. But I hope you take both the sides of coin into consideration. Whatever you decide, make sure you are happy because you only got this one life!


Dhakaldoo
Thanks for the sincere post but like many others you fail to understand the true meaning of culture. Sadly, I am tired of my attempts at explaining it and frankly I suck at it.....that is why there are still people here who don't understand the true intent of this post. Appreciate you taking time to post though.

pmpforgc
05-15-2012, 08:42 PM
I fully understand and agree that you have to decide on your own about RTI depending on individual goals and situations.

But when people try to talk about loosing values/ traditions/culture becuase they moved out of India is really laughable.

We dont have any family relations or social culture left any more since last two decade. On surface it looks like every one in extended family cares about each other but when you go into depth all those are mostly deceptive and selfish relations. most of them are trying to hide real like/dislikes and try internal legpullings for personal motives.I had seen lots of life lost or depressed or abused in those so called extended family culture which existed while back. I dont know what our kids can learn from so deceptive and broken family culture. Comparing that to western everything is mostly open, nondecptive and dependent on individual freedom.

I have also seen that children brought up in US are well mannered and high in morality most of the time comparing their counter parts in India. There they learn to fight for survival from birth which result in unhealthy mind set.

I am sure there are plenty of other points can be made in favor of and against each culture. But when you look at over all picture of moral values, ethics and culture in the depth (not on the surface ) you will realize that we have gained in those aspects after moving away from india.

Forgetting monetary aspects, I or my close family dont miss anything because we moved out of India in term of cultural aspects.

Having so much indian things and people available in US, if you still miss our culture, I would just suggest to catch next flight of Air India ( If they are still operating ) to your home town and stay there for next two three year before you can conclude on your answer

gk_2000
05-15-2012, 09:17 PM
Thanks for the sincere post but like many others you fail to understand the true meaning of culture. Sadly, I am tired of my attempts at explaining it and frankly I suck at it.....that is why there are still people here who don't understand the true intent of this post. Appreciate you taking time to post though.

I don't know about true meaning of culture, but I fail to understand
- why you feel you are the last bastion of Indian Culture that is alive today, and that since you left for USA Indian Culture will die
- what prevents you from keeping your culture no matter where you are? After all, don't you see how others, for example the muslims follow theirs in USA, putting down a mat in their cubicles and turning toward mecca and praying?
- why you are talking about genes when talking about culture, and why you are talking in terms of changing them


I fully understand and agree that you have to decide on your own about RTI depending on individual goals and situations.

But when people try to talk about loosing values/ traditions/culture becuase they moved out of India is really laughable.

We dont have any family relations or social culture left any more since last two decade. On surface it looks like every one in extended family cares about each other but when you go into depth all those are mostly deceptive and selfish relations. most of them are trying to hide real like/dislikes and try internal legpullings for personal motives.I had seen lots of life lost or depressed or abused in those so called extended family culture which existed while back. I dont know what our kids can learn from so deceptive and broken family culture. Comparing that to western everything is mostly open, nondecptive and dependent on individual freedom.

I have also seen that children brought up in US are well mannered and high in morality most of the time comparing their counter parts in India. There they learn to fight for survival from birth which result in unhealthy mind set.

I am sure there are plenty of other points can be made in favor of and against each culture. But when you look at over all picture of moral values, ethics and culture in the depth (not on the surface ) you will realize that we have gained in those aspects after moving away from india.

Forgetting monetary aspects, I or my close family dont miss anything because we moved out of India in term of cultural aspects.

Having so much indian things and people available in US, if you still miss our culture, I would just suggest to catch next flight of Air India ( If they are still operating ) to your home town and stay there for next two three year before you can conclude on your answer

A much more practical post. Thanks for this

rkg000
05-15-2012, 10:01 PM
A very good topic to discuss as I am sure everyone of our generation went through this thought process. I am not sure though if everybody understood what "psagarn" was trying to say in his OP. In his reference to culture and tradition I don't see him dwelling much on people relations, rather it was more towards what India, as an ancient civilization, discovered and invented. What our ancestors passed on to us as ideal practices starting from use of Tulasi, Neem and other flora and fauna, to something like Yoga which gave us longevity among other benefits, would be lost on us if not followed and preserved.

Most of us left India about 10 years ago and have an image and assumption which has no comparison to the current reality. The pace at which consumption is rising in India, is not sustainable. Not so long ago, at functions, food was served in banana leaves which was amazing, and if you noticed, in some restaurants now in US, it has become fashionable to serve in one. But back home, even in villages, use of plastic has increased which is adding to enormous trash lying everywhere. Nobody seem to remember or care anymore. In that respect, I think people here are turning the corner in embracing organic growth for the betterment of all.

As for the questions on R2I, don't think I need to add more. I, however do think what would everybody, or most of us would be thinking if we were not stuck in this Chakravyuha called Green Card :).

psagarn
05-16-2012, 05:35 AM
I will not be around, whatever you decide to do, so feel free.

I don't know about true meaning of culture, but I fail to understand
- why you feel you are the last bastion of Indian Culture that is alive today, and that since you left for USA Indian Culture will die
- what prevents you from keeping your culture no matter where you are? After all, don't you see how others, for example the muslims follow theirs in USA, putting down a mat in their cubicles and turning toward mecca and praying?
- why you are talking about genes when talking about culture, and why you are talking in terms of changing them

You, Sir, have some serious issues. You said you will not be around but have since posted two messages, full of criticism and hate, on this thread. Nowhere in any of your replies, you added any value to the discussion but yes a lot of criticism of people like me, India and Indian culture. You clearly have no idea what I am talking about and I have said that at least twice. And from whatever you could understand from my post, your hate for things I have listed in my original post is pretty evident, why bother posting messages on such crap. I sincerely advice you to stop wasting your time on this "crazy thread by an arrogant Indian" because I am not going to respond to any of your words of wisdom.

psagarn
05-16-2012, 05:52 AM
A very good topic to discuss as I am sure everyone of our generation went through this thought process. I am not sure though if everybody understood what "psagarn" was trying to say in his OP. In his reference to culture and tradition I don't see him dwelling much on people relations, rather it was more towards what India, as an ancient civilization, discovered and invented. What our ancestors passed on to us as ideal practices starting from use of Tulasi, Neem and other flora and fauna, to something like Yoga which gave us longevity among other benefits, would be lost on us if not followed and preserved.

A million thanks to you RKG, for this explanation! You hit the nail on the head! Additionally, these are the things that are dawning on western civilization now and they are turning away from synthetic replacements of these. Not only that, some of these wonders (Tulsi etc.) might not even work their magic in a non-native environment like America. And please (this is for India bashers on this thread), do not take it as the only thing I am concerned about, it is probably 1/1000th of what we have achieved in 1000s of yrs of history. Some of these achievements are recognized by us (read western civilization) others are still unrecognized simply because we forgot the reason for adopting such practices. One such example would be that "Bete se vansh chalta hai" is an age old thing in India but West has only recently realized that Y chromosome is the one that gets carried on across generations.

Who knows tomorrow West might discover that "hawa paani ka asar" is an actual factor in deciding the nature of the people and how they react.

slowwin
05-16-2012, 08:32 AM
The moment you left Indian shores for either job or education, you have said India is not good enough for you.

As far as "culture" is concerned, it is in the beholder' eye. What is Culture ? If it is eating, wearing, behaving, talking, following relgion, rituals, development of morals and character, awareness, reading literature, arts etc (you get the point...)., then most Indian origin people active in their temple/mosque/church etc associations and their children have and enjoy Indian culture.

If you define Indian Culture as Being Present in India and doing all of the above things, that is an Individual preference.

If it is family ties you are talking, again it is individual preference.

If it is the "sanskar" of the kids, I have seen both ends of spectrum. Extremely well behaved Indian origin kids (religious mided, moral and chaste) from USA and rude/ill behaved/immoral kids from India (who have had the oppurtunity of the cultural experience as being peddled by you).


I am not defending anybody or advocating for or against R2I or not to R2I.

Again, it is an individual preference. Either way, it is your decision and consequences (either good or bad) are for you to bear.

A million thanks to you RKG, for this explanation! You hit the nail on the head! Additionally, these are the things that are dawning on western civilization now and they are turning away from synthetic replacements of these. Not only that, some of these wonders (Tulsi etc.) might not even work their magic in a non-native environment like America. And please (this is for India bashers on this thread), do not take it as the only thing I am concerned about, it is probably 1/1000th of what we have achieved in 1000s of yrs of history. Some of these achievements are recognized by us (read western civilization) others are still unrecognized simply because we forgot the reason for adopting such practices. One such example would be that "Bete se vansh chalta hai" is an age old thing in India but West has only recently realized that Y chromosome is the one that gets carried on across generations.

Who knows tomorrow West might discover that "hawa paani ka asar" is an actual factor in deciding the nature of the people and how they react.

roni077
05-16-2012, 09:21 AM
But PSAGARN, many of those age-old ideas led to very bad interpretations and are best if we lose them! Take for example your "Bete se vansh chalta hai" - for hundreds of years, we interpreted that to mean girls can be neglected because only boys are useful. The useful ones (e.g. yoga, tulsi etc etc that you mentioned before) - it's up to the individual to carry forward what he/she believes is worth carrying forward. Every generation loses some stuff, but gains some as well. Happens everywhere - not just to us. You think the Mayans aren't pissed? Or the native Americans? :-)

Dhakaldoo - very powerful post. My wife agreed with most of the points you made - especially the ones on sari.

InTheMoment - to your post "Here is my own wife and my mother who learned a horde lot intricacies about home medicine, traditional and subtle aspects of lifestyle, clothes, food and so much more from their own "saas" - my response is, this is what YOU think. Have you ever asked your wife or mother if THEY actually WANTED to learn from their saas? Can you ask your wife to post on this blog "being of sound mind and body and having enough education to discern what is best for me and my kids, I have chosen to live with and learn from my saas"?

I'm kidding :-) Please don't get upset. This is too good a thread to lose, fighting amongst us. Now that nothing will happen until October and Teddy is not posting forecasts on the 'predictions-rather calculations' thread (the primary reason why people come here), this one has great potential. Bravo PSAGARN :) Don't let gk_2000 piss you off.

- Indian Guy

gk_2000
05-16-2012, 11:00 AM
You, Sir, have some serious issues. You said you will not be around but have since posted two messages, full of criticism and hate, on this thread.

Try to understand. I will never be around for watching you what you do, so you are free in that sense. No way I am quitting IV or this thread just because of some silliness

And again, it is up to you, if you want to see "hate". At some level, if you are mature enough, you can distinguish between criticism and hate, and I don't want to be the one to tutor you or anyone. Matter of my personal policy. Sorry.

Nowhere in any of your replies, you added any value to the discussion but yes a lot of criticism of people like me, India and Indian culture. You clearly have no idea what I am talking about and I have said that at least twice. And from whatever you could understand from my post, your hate for things I have listed in my original post is pretty evident, why bother posting messages on such crap. I sincerely advice you to stop wasting your time on this "crazy thread by an arrogant Indian" because I am not going to respond to any of your words of wisdom.

If in your opinion criticism does not add value, so be it. Enjoy the sweet words of other people who agree with you always and say "Yes yes".
On a public forum, however, it is difficult to resist a debate, however. You can name it as my weakness. I have a tendency to express my opinion, either in a good way or poor way, as I am sure many others do too

Bravo PSAGARN :) Don't let gk_2000 piss you off.

- Indian Guy
too late, my friend.. too late (lol)

amitjoey
05-16-2012, 11:33 AM
psagaran- While I agree with a lot of things you said, I also want to add caution and some different thought (hopefully). Each one of us goes through this turmoil and nostalgia- and even if we have decided to be here permanently- the thought will always come to our mind -whether the grass is greener on the other side?. Most of it can be attributed to the fact that when we were young we had more time (it seemed) and were care free and enjoyed life (or so we think now). So, right now even if we were in india- we would have yearned for the years when we were younger -in college- or in school.
If you were in India right now- you would have yearned to go out of India and prove yourself- make it successful (that is more successfull)- bottom line- the human mind yearns to make life more successful- and move up.

I agree that whatever is good with Indian civilization- our yoga, traditional ayurveda is being lost- and the concern that it could be lost rapidly in an alien foreign land. But look what is happenning in India - it is being lost there too.

India of the 70s- 80s 90s when most of us grew was a way different- with a little slower paced life. We have lost the years when we were here- some of us have been here for 12-15 years and have not been witness to the change as it happened in India.

If you are talking about missing something in your life- talk about the slower pace of life- the values or morals - that is missing in India of today.
If you are talking about civilization and culture of ancient India -that is actually lost in India.

If anybody wants to relearn the civilizational aspects of ancient India- I feel, they can do it more in the USA then in India- there are more books on ancient India on amazon then in any library in India.
If you are worried about kids- then you actually have more opportunity in any major US city for your kids to learn bharatnatyam, classical indian music, or instrument. There are hindi/tamil classes and self help groups. For adults there are yoga and meditation classes almost everywhere. Go to any balvihar-chinmaya class to learn sholkas and actually understand their meaning in English.
You have more time in the USA to actually engage with your child and teach them ancient philosophies and at the same time take advantage of what education in US emparts them- to become well rounded and a strong confident individual.
Only in the USA- can a kid get access to world class swimming/soccer/basketball facilities and at the same time get music/arts teachers. Only here can a kid also go to a temple, celebrate freely whatever ritual/festival and associate with any group and learn a Indian language at the same time.
you have the perfect opportunity to raise a confident global citizen with an aware Indian heritage.

amitjoey
05-16-2012, 11:35 AM
In conjunction with the earlier post-

Our ancient sensibilities were based on true science.

So, science with the ancient Indians- was so advanced at the time in India that the civilization flourished. examples- cities were built with drainage systems- rivers were spared from pollution by engaging polluting activities in the southern side (most rivers in india flow- north-south, so the thought was- if you use the northern fresh water for daily human use, use the southern side for other uses- so by the time the river flows another 100 miles downstream, it is able to dilute itself and purify).
Vastu-shastra- based on science- east was where sun rises- so all morning activities- praying, exercise, were to north east- to take advantage of the rising morning sun-when the sun's rays are most beneficial to the human body.
Ayurveda- ex: Tulsi has great stabilising benefits and gives equilibrium to the body, it cures a lot of infections and tulsi plants also purify the air by removing monoxides. Same with neem to an extent. turmeric is an excellent antibiotic. Ancient indians (scientists-sages) knew this- and created a code of conduct-whereby they tied everything they knew was good for humanity into a simple daily practice ritual and combined it with some ritual associated with god. So, people were told- plant tulsi in your front and back yard- to give it importance, they were told to worship it- so proper attention can be given to its upkeep- fables and stories were written around it. Same is the case with hundreds and thousands of other things.
The vedas -rig veda , ayur-veda and shastras are full of thousands of these simple tricks and scientific discoveries, they are the purest forms of scientific, organic methods to purify, uplift the human body and environment. They are berift of any ritual. They are scientific journals- tested and tried by vedic men and women of the time for the benefit of the entire human race. Anybody that knows sanskrit can read these scientific journals and acknowledge that they were written for the welfare of the entire human race. They belong to the world.

What I see in America of tommorrow, is the Vedic India - In some ways, India (Bharatvarsha) and Indians 5000 years back also had an evolved scientifically proven method to lead a more balanced, environmentally friendly and organic lifestyle.
America is headed towards that- although it is a good 100-200 years back to when we can truly shun plastic from our life and lead a good life- But today- Leading universities in europe and USA are acknowledging the thought and the science that belongs to India.
Eastern thought and vedic science is increasingly being discussed and analyzed.

India has lost its pure civilizational essence- rivers are polluted, massive deforestation and end of organic farming, plastic and junk food everywhere. Urban indians have lost their touch with the civilization. Culture has been left to just wearing Indian dress at times. Indian languages are begining to go extinct- forget sanskrit. In the last 2000 years- creptic corrupt practices and nonsense rituals without understanding the correct science has corroded the Indian mindset. Indians in the last 250 years started questioning their rituals- some of these had crept in through dilution of the correct philosophy and correctly we are shunning these out. Dowry, caste, and other such things need to be shunned out. But in order to look modern, we cannot shun out important other things that are beneficial and still hold true.

In that sense- America and the western world are beggining to question the western lifestyle- more organic farming, more of herbs are being used in daily life and yoga and meditation are gaining respect.
Western thought is engaging with eastern philosophies.

estno15
05-16-2012, 12:10 PM
Good morning all.

I am an asylum seeker located. I am living in PA. My asylum aplication has been summitted on january, but before that i had my I-94 and my EAC. All thos documents are expired. I sent the I-765 form with the money order in order to get my EAC renew, almost 2 months after i receive a notice from the USCIS asking me evidence by providing my I-94 extended, I have my judge order for next year, so now i have no status and just got fired from my job. can someone tell mw where could i go to get my I-94 renewed while in removal procedings. the 150 days after submitting the application can't be used considered because the clock is not running.

Someone can help me please.
Regards.

dagabaaj
05-16-2012, 01:43 PM
My 2 cents/ 2 anna worth of contribution to this discussion.
The definition of culture from Dictionary.com | Find the Meanings and Definitions of Words at Dictionary.com (http://www.dictionary.com) is as below
cul·ture    [kuhl-cher]
1.the quality in a person or society that arises from a concern for what is regarded as excellent in arts, letters, manners, scholarly pursuits, etc.
2.that which is excellent in the arts, manners, etc.
3.a particular form or stage of civilization, as that of a certain nation or period: Greek culture.
4.development or improvement of the mind by education or training.
5.the behaviors and beliefs characteristic of a particular social, ethnic, or age group: the youth culture; the drug culture.
6.Anthropology . the sum total of ways of living built up by a group of human beings and transmitted from one generation to another.
7.Biology .
a.the cultivation of microorganisms, as bacteria, or of tissues, for scientific study, medicinal use, etc.
b.the product or growth resulting from such cultivation.
8.the act or practice of cultivating the soil; tillage.
9.the raising of plants or animals, especially with a view to their improvement.
10.the product or growth resulting from such cultivation.

All of the above point to continuous change and improvement. That is the only constant - change. That said location or environment has limited effect on it. We are a product of the change that was existing in India when we left and came here. Our children are free to roam. Something like cross pollination is occurring here. Right, wrong or indifferent is all relative.

gk_2000
05-16-2012, 02:08 PM
To borrow a phrase (from I don't know who):
By moving across national lines, we make both the country of origin and the destination culturally richer, not poorer. i.e., it happens due to us


My 2 cents/ 2 anna worth of contribution to this discussion.
The definition of culture from Dictionary.com | Find the Meanings and Definitions of Words at Dictionary.com (http://www.dictionary.com) is as below
cul·ture    [kuhl-cher]
1.the quality in a person or society that arises from a concern for what is regarded as excellent in arts, letters, manners, scholarly pursuits, etc.
2.that which is excellent in the arts, manners, etc.
3.a particular form or stage of civilization, as that of a certain nation or period: Greek culture.
4.development or improvement of the mind by education or training.
5.the behaviors and beliefs characteristic of a particular social, ethnic, or age group: the youth culture; the drug culture.
6.Anthropology . the sum total of ways of living built up by a group of human beings and transmitted from one generation to another.
7.Biology .
a.the cultivation of microorganisms, as bacteria, or of tissues, for scientific study, medicinal use, etc.
b.the product or growth resulting from such cultivation.
8.the act or practice of cultivating the soil; tillage.
9.the raising of plants or animals, especially with a view to their improvement.
10.the product or growth resulting from such cultivation.

All of the above point to continuous change and improvement. That is the only constant - change. That said location or environment has limited effect on it. We are a product of the change that was existing in India when we left and came here. Our children are free to roam. Something like cross pollination is occurring here. Right, wrong or indifferent is all relative.

roni077
05-16-2012, 03:15 PM
To borrow a phrase (from I don't know who):
By moving across national lines, we make both the country of origin and the destination culturally richer, not poorer. i.e., it happens due to us

- So, when we moved away from India, we made it culturally richer? Crap. Now I see why everyone was so happy when I left :-)

psagarn
05-17-2012, 11:57 AM
But PSAGARN, many of those age-old ideas led to very bad interpretations and are best if we lose them! Take for example your "Bete se vansh chalta hai" - for hundreds of years, we interpreted that to mean girls can be neglected because only boys are useful. I don't agree with that. Just because some people tweaked its interpretation over a period of 1000s of years, we should not abandon it. Here is modern explanation of how this whole thing works and why we should keep following it.

Science of Genetics behind the Hindu Gotra System – The Y Chromosome and the Male Lineage | HitXP by Gurudev (http://www.hitxp.com/articles/veda/science-genetics-vedic-hindu-gotra-y-chromosome-male-lineage-extinction/)

Bravo PSAGARN :) Don't let gk_2000 piss you off.
- Indian Guy
I have the "ignore gk_2000" filter on and it is working pretty good...highly recommend it to others....makes discussion much more cordial and less hateful.

psagarn
05-17-2012, 12:11 PM
I agree that whatever is good with Indian civilization- our yoga, traditional ayurveda is being lost- and the concern that it could be lost rapidly in an alien foreign land. But look what is happenning in India - it is being lost there too.

Looks like that this is the general impression, and may be I am wrong and the people holding this view are right. Till a cpl of years ago, there were Yoga classes in the morning at places like Gurgaon where middle age people would do "Datun" and laughter sessions. I know a friend of mine is planning to let doctor transplant his lever into his Dad's body as his Dad's lever is 60% gone. I am not saying that things are not changing but for some reason I still see the core beliefs being practiced by people.

If anybody wants to relearn the civilizational aspects of ancient India- I feel, they can do it more in the USA then in India- there are more books on ancient India on amazon then in any library in India.
If you are worried about kids- then you actually have more opportunity in any major US city for your kids to learn bharatnatyam, classical indian music, or instrument. There are hindi/tamil classes and self help groups. For adults there are yoga and meditation classes almost everywhere. Go to any balvihar-chinmaya class to learn sholkas and actually understand their meaning in English.
You have more time in the USA to actually engage with your child and teach them ancient philosophies and at the same time take advantage of what education in US emparts them- to become well rounded and a strong confident individual.
Only in the USA- can a kid get access to world class swimming/soccer/basketball facilities and at the same time get music/arts teachers. Only here can a kid also go to a temple, celebrate freely whatever ritual/festival and associate with any group and learn a Indian language at the same time.
you have the perfect opportunity to raise a confident global citizen with an aware Indian heritage.
True.

gk_2000
05-17-2012, 03:56 PM
- So, when we moved away from India, we made it culturally richer? Crap. Now I see why everyone was so happy when I left :-)

Yes. That's what I believe, because we are mostly city-sticklers, and our culture resides more in our villages.. so we are bringing up the average knowledge by leaving..

gk_2000
05-17-2012, 03:58 PM
I don't agree with that. Just because some people tweaked its interpretation over a period of 1000s of years, we should not abandon it. Here is modern explanation of how this whole thing works and why we should keep following it.

Science of Genetics behind the Hindu Gotra System – The Y Chromosome and the Male Lineage | HitXP by Gurudev (http://www.hitxp.com/articles/veda/science-genetics-vedic-hindu-gotra-y-chromosome-male-lineage-extinction/)

I have the "ignore gk_2000" filter on and it is working pretty good...highly recommend it to others....makes discussion much more cordial and less hateful.

HA HA HA ... how does he know if it is working or not ;-)

dhakaldoo
05-17-2012, 07:46 PM
My second and hopefully last post :D
U claim that I "fail" to understand "true" meaning of post.. you THINK you actually do... You read analysis and reasoning behind ancient Indian traditions..
this is all okay till the point when you claim that they were right and applicable for today's age.

Go explain people the following article and That should stop female foeticide right?

People like you trying to take our country back to 4th century by digging up old traditions and trying to justify them.. tomorrow you will say child marriage was a tradition because of so and so scientific reason. So childish!

I don't agree with that. Just because some people tweaked its interpretation over a period of 1000s of years, we should not abandon it. Here is modern explanation of how this whole thing works and why we should keep following it.

Science of Genetics behind the Hindu Gotra System – The Y Chromosome and the Male Lineage | HitXP by Gurudev (http://www.hitxp.com/articles/veda/science-genetics-vedic-hindu-gotra-y-chromosome-male-lineage-extinction/)

.


OMG.. Gk_2000 I support ya buddy!

gk_2000
05-17-2012, 08:11 PM
My second and hopefully last post :D
U claim that I "fail" to understand "true" meaning of post.. you THINK you actually do... You read analysis and reasoning behind ancient Indian traditions..
this is all okay till the point when you claim that they were right and applicable for today's age.

Go explain people the following article and That should stop female foeticide right?

People like you trying to take our country back to 4th century by digging up old traditions and trying to justify them.. tomorrow you will say child marriage was a tradition because of so and so scientific reason. So childish!




OMG.. Gk_2000 I support ya buddy!

The really important question to ask here is: Do we really have all the knowledge necessary to understand and implement everything our culture says? Yes, I have heard they even had flying machines in those days, so it may be desirable to get their knowledge. But IN FACT, we DO NOT have the required level of knowledge. And most of us know that "a little knowledge is dangerous" .. right?
No, I am not trying to be funny here.. as a practical matter, we will be better off acting out of better knowledge, and out of beliefs, faiths and superstitions. The ancient Indians did not obtain their glory by following any of the above, so how can we assume we can be glorious by adopting the superstitions?
So, let's keep our brains and commonsense and reasoning alive and working, and make the most of what we have today. If at all someone is too interested in the "Past glories" he is of course free to do research on the subjects and enlighten today's world. But I guess here's where the talkers will be taking a walk ..

gk_2000
05-17-2012, 08:12 PM
The really important question to ask here is: Do we really have all the knowledge necessary to understand and implement everything our culture says? Yes, I have heard they even had flying machines in those days, so it may be desirable to get their knowledge. But IN FACT, we DO NOT have the required level of knowledge. And most of us know that "a little knowledge is dangerous" .. right?
No, I am not trying to be funny here.. as a practical matter, we will be better off acting out of better knowledge, and out of beliefs, faiths and superstitions. The ancient Indians did not obtain their glory by following any of the above, so how can we assume we can be glorious by adopting the superstitions?
So, let's keep our brains and commonsense and reasoning alive and working, and make the most of what we have today. If at all someone is too interested in the "Past glories" he is of course free to do research on the subjects and enlighten today's world. But I guess here's where the talkers will be taking a walk ..

"...out of better knowledge, and out of belief"

read "than" instead of "and" ..

psagarn
05-18-2012, 07:06 AM
I thought this got posted but looks like not. Here is another try:
In conjunction with the earlier post-

Our ancient sensibilities were based on true science.

So, science with the ancient Indians- was so advanced at the time in India that the civilization flourished. examples- cities were built with drainage systems- rivers were spared from pollution by engaging polluting activities in the southern side (most rivers in india flow- north-south, so the thought was- if you use the northern fresh water for daily human use, use the southern side for other uses- so by the time the river flows another 100 miles downstream, it is able to dilute itself and purify).
Vastu-shastra- based on science- east was where sun rises- so all morning activities- praying, exercise, were to north east- to take advantage of the rising morning sun-when the sun's rays are most beneficial to the human body.
Ayurveda- ex: Tulsi has great stabilising benefits and gives equilibrium to the body, it cures a lot of infections and tulsi plants also purify the air by removing monoxides. Same with neem to an extent. turmeric is an excellent antibiotic. Ancient indians (scientists-sages) knew this- and created a code of conduct-whereby they tied everything they knew was good for humanity into a simple daily practice ritual and combined it with some ritual associated with god. So, people were told- plant tulsi in your front and back yard- to give it importance, they were told to worship it- so proper attention can be given to its upkeep- fables and stories were written around it. Same is the case with hundreds and thousands of other things.
The vedas -rig veda , ayur-veda and shastras are full of thousands of these simple tricks and scientific discoveries, they are the purest forms of scientific, organic methods to purify, uplift the human body and environment. They are berift of any ritual. They are scientific journals- tested and tried by vedic men and women of the time for the benefit of the entire human race. Anybody that knows sanskrit can read these scientific journals and acknowledge that they were written for the welfare of the entire human race. They belong to the world.

Excellent observation! How can I make sure that my kids too realize this and start practicing these things as much as possible. I understand that going back to India probably is not going to get me what I want but how do I make sure that living here in America, I expose my kids to these wonderful gifts of ancient India to the whole world. Can there be a collective effort by those who are concerned about this? Ideas/suggestions on top of sending kids to Balvihar for a cpl of hrs every week would be highly appreciated.

What I see in America of tommorrow, is the Vedic India - In some ways, India (Bharatvarsha) and Indians 5000 years back also had an evolved scientifically proven method to lead a more balanced, environmentally friendly and organic lifestyle.
America is headed towards that- although it is a good 100-200 years back to when we can truly shun plastic from our life and lead a good life- But today- Leading universities in europe and USA are acknowledging the thought and the science that belongs to India.
Eastern thought and vedic science is increasingly being discussed and analyzed.

I really hope it turns out true....ready to contribute in whichever way required.

India has lost its pure civilizational essence- rivers are polluted, massive deforestation and end of organic farming, plastic and junk food everywhere. Urban indians have lost their touch with the civilization. Culture has been left to just wearing Indian dress at times. Indian languages are begining to go extinct- forget sanskrit. In the last 2000 years- creptic corrupt practices and nonsense rituals without understanding the correct science has corroded the Indian mindset. Indians in the last 250 years started questioning their rituals- some of these had crept in through dilution of the correct philosophy and correctly we are shunning these out. Dowry, caste, and other such things need to be shunned out. But in order to look modern, we cannot shun out important other things that are beneficial and still hold true.

What, in your optinion, can be done to undo this damage? Or is it a lost cause now?

psagarn
05-18-2012, 08:20 AM
My second and hopefully last post :D
U claim that I "fail" to understand "true" meaning of post.. you THINK you actually do... You read analysis and reasoning behind ancient Indian traditions..
this is all okay till the point when you claim that they were right and applicable for today's age.

Go explain people the following article and That should stop female foeticide right?

People like you trying to take our country back to 4th century by digging up old traditions and trying to justify them..

:-) , no need to get worked up...female foeticide is not only a crime against unborn girls, it is a crime against all the females of human race including our mothers, sisters and daughters. Nothing can be as cruel as killing a child and that too an unborn one. As far as I know, this practice of female foeticide is fairly new (a few hundred yrs old) and is tightly associated with the dowry system. So ancient science/culture is not the one that should be criticized here but the practice of dowry which is a recent phenomenon, should be criticized and stopped.

Please read the whole blog/post before forming an opinion. The writer clearly explains why and how the male chromosome,Y , gets preserved across generations where as the same thing can not be said about the X chromosome and that is now an established fact, thanks to modern science. He further states a hypothesis as to why Y chromosome needs to be preserved, do you have a valid argument against his theory? And there is a very strong reason given by him as to why intra-gotra marriages are a big risk. Just because something is ancient does not mean it is wrong.

tomorrow you will say child marriage was a tradition because of so and so scientific reason. So childish!

Science is forever evolving. There is a fair chance that what you know today might change tomorrow. So far, we have reasons to believe that in modern age, Child marriage is bad for the kids involved and I agree to that. I can not guarantee that this is going to be the general perception a few decades from now. I remember I read somewhere that kids born to younger parents, up to a certain age, generally have a longer and healthier life as compared to kids born to older parents. Please note that I am not talking about parents in their teens and am not supporting child marriage. All I am saying is that things may change in future, as we discover new things...just like child marriage probably made sense centuries ago but not in modern age.
[/QUOTE]
OMG.. Gk_2000 I support ya buddy!

Good for you and him.

dhakaldoo
05-18-2012, 09:41 AM
:-) , no need to get worked up...female foeticide is not only a crime against unborn girls, it is a crime against all the females of human race including our mothers, sisters and daughters. Nothing can be as cruel as killing a child and that too an unborn one. As far as I know, this practice of female foeticide is fairly new (a few hundred yrs old) and is tightly associated with the dowry system. So ancient science/culture is not the one that should be criticized here but the practice of dowry which is a recent phenomenon, should be criticized and stopped.

Please read the whole blog/post before forming an opinion. The writer clearly explains why and how the male chromosome,Y , gets preserved across generations where as the same thing can not be said about the X chromosome and that is now an established fact, thanks to modern science. He further states a hypothesis as to why Y chromosome needs to be preserved, do you have a valid argument against his theory? And there is a very strong reason given by him as to why intra-gotra marriages are a big risk. Just because something is ancient does not mean it is wrong.

Science is forever evolving. There is a fair chance that what you know today might change tomorrow. So far, we have reasons to believe that in modern age, Child marriage is bad for the kids involved and I agree to that. I can not guarantee that this is going to be the general perception a few decades from now. I remember I read somewhere that kids born to younger parents, up to a certain age, generally have a longer and healthier life as compared to kids born to older parents. Please note that I am not talking about parents in their teens and am not supporting child marriage. All I am saying is that things may change in future, as we discover new things...just like child marriage probably made sense centuries ago but not in modern age.


Good for you and him.[/QUOTE]

dhakaldoo
05-18-2012, 09:42 AM
Dude,

I read the article.
I have also questioned a lot of traditions while growing up and because of that I understood meaning of lot of traditions and how some of them are valid and many are not in today's world of tech and science. You just got to ask Why and you will get answers.

No body says Ancient traditions were wrong. My point was that they were made into traditions by knowledgeable people wrapped in religious rituals so that people who did not have right to read and write ( only bhrahmins had. women and others didn't) would follow these in the name of god. BUT those were traditions that were probably appropriate for that time. Things like this give birth to Superstitions.

Some natural phenomenon that people did not understand like "eclipses" etc were put forward as horrible events in front of common people.
(I have witnessed 3 Total solar eclipses, performed scientific experiments with Indian scientists and Andha Shraddha Nirmulan Samiti when I was a kid! all the beliefs except for the one that says dont look at the sun directly during total eclipse ARE proven wrong.)

About this article,
Honestly I dont give a damn for Inter/Intra Gotra marriage because I am a strong believer of the thought that if two people love each other they got to have a right to marry. BUT i can understand if somebody who believes in Kundali etc would not want to marry in same gotra.

What I am trying to say here is people do try to follow the traditions blindly. Its sad to see all the religious rituals they follow without understanding that many of them are obsolete.
Heck I have friends who go from US to India and then go to temple to do a "Shuddhi" because they committed a SIN of crossing the sea.

You see, so your article about Y chromosom may be interpreted as everybody has to have a boy child resulting in crime. Dowry is not the only reason as it doenst happen in our family but they still want boy child.

There are things like planting tulsi and uses of Neem, turmeric which are good things but its not culture its called SCIENCE. Western people also know some of it. They have patented usage of Neem before us. We barely WON the patent of turmeric / Haldi. I know the scientist behind it. I have talked to him when I was in school when this dispute was going on.

The reason our sciences got lost over the time because they were not passed to common man and especially women. They just followed them blindly. Unlike western rebels Newton , Copernicus etc who dared to go against Church, our Bhaskaracharya never fought with our religious system.
I read a story about a scientist doctor in europe in 16th/ 17th century who realized that the cause of deaths of mothers and babies at birth during that time in his region was that doctor delivering the Babies were not washing hands after examiniing dead Corpes / Cadevers. He tried to explain this to the doctors and they found it humiliating that somebody wants them to wash hands every now and then and refused to do it. The deaths continued. The frustrated doctor committed suicide after many years of fighting.
This is what I am talking about. People not questioning what they do, why they do etc.


If you say you want to preserve our Sciences I do agree. But everything needs to be evaluated. Just as I want to desparetly save my mother toung
I TOTALLY AGREE not everything old is bad BUT MORE THAN THAT I SAY that
NOT EVERYTHING OLD IS GOLD. You just have to keep asking why.

Cuz otherwise, world would still be considered as flat with earth being center of universe!

LAST POINT :
I dont think this is an appropriate forum for this discussion. This is a endless and overwhelming topic. :)

psagarn
05-19-2012, 03:13 PM
Dudette,

I read the article.
I have also questioned a lot of traditions while growing up and because of that I understood meaning of lot of traditions and how some of them are valid and many are not in today's world of tech and science. You just got to ask Why and you will get answers.

I did and got my answers......probably ur answers were way different than mine but that is ok.
No body says Ancient traditions were wrong. My point was that they were made into traditions by knowledgeable people wrapped in religious rituals so that people who did not have right to read and write ( only bhrahmins had. women and others didn't) would follow these in the name of god. BUT those were traditions that were probably appropriate for that time. Things like this give birth to Superstitions.
So what is your point? All age old traditions are wrong or just some of them are wrong or all of them are right, or you don't like the strategy adopted by people in those times (associate traditions with GOD) to have better compliance.

Some natural phenomenon that people did not understand like "eclipses" etc were put forward as horrible events in front of common people.
(I have witnessed 3 Total solar eclipses, performed scientific experiments with Indian scientists and Andha Shraddha Nirmulan Samiti when I was a kid! all the beliefs except for the one that says dont look at the sun directly during total eclipse ARE proven wrong.)
You have no idea how science works. let me give you an example. When X-RAy was initially invented, some of the places selling shoes had X-RAY machines with them where in they used to let the customers take a look at their feet to give them a better idea about how a shoe fits them (more here Shoe-fitting fluoroscope - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shoe-fitting_fluoroscope)). The intensity of that XRay exposure was way more than what is allowed now-a-days. Any guess why those machines were first legal and then banned? You are right, at one point of time they were considered safe and then they realized how harmful the exposure to X-RAY is. THE SCIENCE EVOLVES. Do you think people knew about the ill effects of looking at the sun during an eclipse a few centuries ago? Most probably not but science evolved and came out with the conclusion that even during the eclipse the corona is spitting out harmful radiation so don't look at it.

About this article,
Honestly I dont give a damn for Inter/Intra Gotra marriage because I am a strong believer of the thought that if two people love each other they got to have a right to marry. BUT i can understand if somebody who believes in Kundali etc would not want to marry in same gotra.
This article is not about what you believe, it is about what is better for Human race and the author has put forward a scientific theory why intra-gotra marriage is bad. If the couple is in love, go ahead and marry but do not have kids. It is proven that Genetically related couples are way more likely to have kids with birth defects than those that are not linked.

What I am trying to say here is people do try to follow the traditions blindly. Its sad to see all the religious rituals they follow without understanding that many of them are obsolete.
Heck I have friends who go from US to India and then go to temple to do a "Shuddhi" because they committed a SIN of crossing the sea.
and you are mad at them because? Why is it that you want to impose your "rational" thinking on them. Why can't you let them do what they want as long as they do not harm others? If I do not wash clothes on a particular day why does that bother you?

You see, so your article about Y chromosom may be interpreted as everybody has to have a boy child resulting in crime. Dowry is not the only reason as it doenst happen in our family but they still want boy child.
Really? Where does the article say that? I am surprised that you don't find dowry system as the main culprit here. So do you also think that this article suggests that after first son all other sons should be killed because you do not need any more sons to further your lineage?

There are things like planting tulsi and uses of Neem, turmeric which are good things but its not culture its called SCIENCE. Western people also know some of it. They have patented usage of Neem before us. We barely WON the patent of turmeric / Haldi. I know the scientist behind it. I have talked to him when I was in school when this dispute was going on.

You know your post is really confusing, Tulsi is science and not tradition but the unbroken link for establishing lineage, Y chromosome, is not science but a tradition and that too an evil one.
The reason our sciences got lost over the time because they were not passed to common man and especially women.

I take my earlier comment back, this one makes sense but a small correction. It is not lost...people no longer practice it and out of those who practice it, most have forgotten the reasons behind these sciences.

They just followed them blindly. Unlike western rebels Newton , Copernicus etc who dared to go against Church, our Bhaskaracharya never fought with our religious system.
Religious system? Can you please name the ancient religious system that you are talking about? Do you have a word for religion in ancient Indian languages like Sanskrit?

I read a story about a scientist doctor in europe in 16th/ 17th century who realized that the cause of deaths of mothers and babies at birth during that time in his region was that doctor delivering the Babies were not washing hands after examiniing dead Corpes / Cadevers. He tried to explain this to the doctors and they found it humiliating that somebody wants them to wash hands every now and then and refused to do it. The deaths continued. The frustrated doctor committed suicide after many years of fighting.
This is what I am talking about. People not questioning what they do, why they do etc.


If you say you want to preserve our Sciences I do agree. But everything needs to be evaluated. Just as I want to desparetly save my mother toung
I TOTALLY AGREE not everything old is bad BUT MORE THAN THAT I SAY that
NOT EVERYTHING OLD IS GOLD. You just have to keep asking why.

Cuz otherwise, world would still be considered as flat with earth being center of universe!

LAST POINT :
I dont think this is an appropriate forum for this discussion. This is a endless and overwhelming topic. :)
Fair enough.

gk_2000
05-20-2012, 12:05 AM
@ dhakaldoo

Is it just me, or does this person's arguments drive one crazy?

dhakaldoo
05-20-2012, 08:21 AM
@ dhakaldoo

Is it just me, or does this person's arguments drive one crazy?

Nop its not just you! it DOES drive one crazy...........

psagarn
05-20-2012, 10:01 AM
Nop its not just you! it DOES drive one crazy...........
Please ignore this thread in the larger interest of the society. The world can not afford to let either of you go crazy.

dhakaldoo
05-20-2012, 10:03 AM
@ psagarn

Dudette, :P

I did and got my answers......probably ur answers were way different than mine but that is ok. Ofcourse.. point of views of a man and a woman aught to be different.

So what is your point? All age old traditions are wrong or just some of them are wrong or all of them are right, or you don't like the strategy adopted by people in those times (associate traditions with GOD) to have better compliance.
there is nothing to like about a strategy where grown people are made to follow any thing blindly. BUT I agree it may be needed in many cases.

You have no idea how science works.
Quit telling others what they understand and what they FAIL to understand. U do remind me of Sheldon Cooper.. But he at least is funny and fictitious .
Did you really open this thread for discussion??

let me give you an example. When X-RAy was initially invented, some of the places selling shoes had X-RAY machines with them where in they used to let the customers take a look at their feet to give them a better idea about how a shoe fits them …………………….
repeating sentence from my first post haan??? Culture evolves too. And really? An example from Wiki?

Do you think people knew about the ill effects of looking at the sun during an eclipse a few centuries ago? Most probably not but science evolved and came out with the conclusion that even during the eclipse the corona is spitting out harmful radiation so don't look at it.
I am sure some people knew.

This article is not about what you believe, it is about what is better for Human race Quoting from Matrix-.. Human beings are like Virus.
Also looking at India right now or (even considering the time of epic Mahabharat) where marriages were fixed strictly using kundalis and still are in most of the cases, , I dont think Inter gotra marriages are producing better human race :P
Any way Rather than worrying about making entire race better might be better to worry about saving the planet etc.

and the author has put forward a scientific theory why intra-gotra marriage is bad. If the couple is in love, go ahead and marry but do not have kids.
1)!@#$%%^&@#$%^&*@#$%^&*
2) So its okay for you to tell people what to do in their personal lifes and I am FORCING rational behavior on ppl when I talk about people following superstitions and behave completely irrational way??? WTF!
3) you are the one who is suggesting and forcing that if somebody marries in same gotra don’t produce babies. I am just commenting on Hippocratic behavior.

It is proven that Genetically related couples are way more likely to have kids with birth defects than those that are not linked.
SO? its not guaranteed other wise any way. Parsi’s marry in their maternal relatives and do have some problems but… we would never have Ratan Tata if TATAs did not produce a baby.

And you are mad at them because? Why is it that you want to impose your "rational" thinking on them. Why can't you let them do what they want as long as they do not harm others? If I do not wash clothes on a particular day why does that bother you?
BOY you really know when I am mad and when I am not dont ya, R u into Astrology??? :P
1) I dont give damn when u wash or dont wash ur clothes. I am sure no body does. But it is freaking idiotic to do whatever you want and then do a Pooja to wash it away. Its Hippocratic. Just like you who can advise people not to marry in gotra and not to produce baby if they did.. but has a problem about somebody criticizing superstitious behavior.
2) and how is it okay that people force irrational behavior on others ALL the time! Like if I want to visit temple I am not allowed because I haven’t washed my sin of travelling abroad??? And THAT IS OKAY???????


Really? Where does the article say that? I am surprised that you don't find dowry system as the main culprit here. So do you also think that this article suggests that after first son all other sons should be killed because you do not need any more sons to further your lineage?
U r missing the point all together. and "Ladkese wansh badhta hai is the main reason of insisting on boy child. Which gives more value to boy and less to girl which is the origin of thought that a boy’s is doing a biiiig favor to girls family which is origin of dowry.


You know your post is really confusing, Tulsi is science and not tradition but the unbroken link for establishing lineage, Y chromosome, is not science but a tradition and that too an evil one.
Show me where I said that truth abt Y chromosom isnt science.
And why do you want to use science in this case and not in previous “Shuddhi to wash sin…” case????
Also you want people to follow the Y chromosome theory in the name of science.
And not follow science in the Shudhhi Case above?? R u sure u r not related to Taliban or sri ram sena??

I take my earlier comment back, this one makes sense but a small correction. It is not lost...people no longer practice it and out of those who practice it, most have forgotten the reasons behind these sciences.
If you wanted to take it back u could have deleted it! BUT I am glad u atleast got this point!


Religious system? Can you please name the ancient religious system that you are talking about? Do you have a word for religion in ancient Indian languages like Sanskrit?
Sanskrit??? :eek: TRY Hinduism!!!!! I hope you dont think tamil is a religion too..

Fair enough. Dhanyawad!

I should have taken advise from my husband who is by far the most awesome, just, balanced human being and a genius I know ...

dhakaldoo
05-20-2012, 10:05 AM
Please ignore this thread in the larger interest of the society. The world can not afford to let either of you go crazy.

Oh Crap! pahale bol dete!

psagarn
05-20-2012, 09:15 PM
Did you really open this thread for discussion??

Yes, it was opened for a discussion and not to "educate" people about the uselessness of Indian culture.

repeating sentence from my first post haan??? Culture evolves too. And really? An example from Wiki?

Sentence from your post, what patented takiyakalam of yours am I using here? Yes, Culture evolves but not abandoned.
So wiki is crap and your wisdom is unquestionable. Talk about arrogance!

Quoting from Matrix-.. Human beings are like Virus.
That says it all. More belief in movie scripts than the epics of your ancestors...

Also looking at India right now or (even considering the time of epic Mahabharat) where marriages were fixed strictly using kundalis and still are in most of the cases, , I dont think Inter gotra marriages are producing better human race :P
Any way Rather than worrying about making entire race better might be better to worry about saving the planet etc.

What does this even mean? Seriously, you should have taken your husband's advice.

1)!@#$%%^&@#$%^&*@#$%^&*
2) So its okay for you to tell people what to do in their personal lifes and I am FORCING rational behavior on ppl when I talk about people following superstitions and behave completely irrational way??? WTF!
3) you are the one who is suggesting and forcing that if somebody marries in same gotra don’t produce babies. I am just commenting on Hippocratic behavior.

Personal lives? Producing kids is not personal, it is about bringing a new life to this world. How can you put that life in jeopardy and still call it personal? You say, when parents decide to abort a girl child, which btw is an inhuman act in my opinion, it should be a crime and should not be treated as a personal choice but the same parents, being genetically incompatible, should be allowed to put the life of their future kids at risk because they are in love. What is the word again....Hippocracy.


SO? its not guaranteed other wise any way. Parsi’s marry in their maternal relatives and do have some problems but… we would never have Ratan Tata if TATAs did not produce a baby.

Some problems? look at their population and its trend...it is declining and their race is going to extinct pretty soon...and guess what would be the reason....YES, Marriage with in the family!

BOY you really know when I am mad and when I am not dont ya, R u into Astrology??? :P
1) I dont give damn when u wash or dont wash ur clothes. I am sure no body does. But it is freaking idiotic to do whatever you want and then do a Pooja to wash it away. Its Hippocratic. Just like you who can advise people not to marry in gotra and not to produce baby if they did.. but has a problem about somebody criticizing superstitious behavior.
2) and how is it okay that people force irrational behavior on others ALL the time! Like if I want to visit temple I am not allowed because I haven’t washed my sin of travelling abroad??? And THAT IS OKAY???????

Read my reply again....and read it carefully this time. I said "as long as it does not hurt others". If you still dont understand it, I am sure you will find a genius sitting next to you.

U r missing the point all together. and "Ladkese wansh badhta hai is the main reason of insisting on boy child. Which gives more value to boy and less to girl which is the origin of thought that a boy’s is doing a biiiig favor to girls family which is origin of dowry.

Do you really believe in this theory of urs or did u come up with it just for the sake of argument?


Show me where I said that truth abt Y chromosom isnt science.
And why do you want to use science in this case and not in previous “Shuddhi to wash sin…” case????

Oh, you agree it is science then why should it not be told to the masses. Oh I forgot, because your brilliant theory somehow links it to female foeticide....got it now. And for the last time superstitions or not, people should be allowed to practice what they believe in as long as they do not hurt others. Does shuddhi hurt anyone if it is not enforced on anyone.


Also you want people to follow the Y chromosome theory in the name of science.
And not follow science in the Shudhhi Case above?? R u sure u r not related to Taliban or sri ram sena??
I think you knew what my reply is going to be and this is your pre-emptive strike. YOU ARE TALIBAN/RAM SENE and here is how. You agree that something is science and factual but you do not want it to be known to the masses because you have some insane theory about its consequences. And that is exactly what these fanatics do.

If you wanted to take it back u could have deleted it! BUT I am glad u atleast got this point!
I thought that was obvious, in case you still do not understand it was a sarcastic comment.

Sanskrit??? :eek: TRY Hinduism!!!!! I hope you dont think tamil is a religion too..
Hinduism, a religion! Oh so you are one of those brainwashed followers of Max Mueller. Let me give you another lesson, this time on history and I am seriously thinking about asking for guru-dakshina now. Hinduism is not a hindi/sanskrit word or a word from any of the native languages. It was coined by Europeans, mainly Britishers, to propagate their agenda which was to divide the people of India. Hinduism literally means the system practiced by Hindus just like Capitalism is the system of Capitalists. Before you ask another naive question, the word Hindu itself does not have anything to do with religion, of course now-a-days it is really used in that context. All the people living to the east of Sindhu were called Hindus by Romans as they could not pronounce Sindhu. Again, Hindu is not a native Indian word at all. Also, there is no comparable word for "Religion" in Sanskrit as Indians in the ancient times were more oriented towards their "Dharma" which can be loosely translated to "duty".

I should have taken advise from my husband who is by far the most awesome, just, balanced human being and a genius I know ...
Congratulations on having such a wonderful husband! Enjoy life.

psagarn
05-20-2012, 09:44 PM
All the people living to the east of Sindhu .....
Correction:- it is west and not east of Sindhu

psagarn
05-20-2012, 09:46 PM
Correction:- it is west and not east of Sindhu
And by that I really meant East. Expecting some nasty, and may be funny, comments on this now.

dhakaldoo
05-21-2012, 07:37 AM
I should have taken advise from my husband who is by far the most awesome, just, balanced human being and a genius I know ...

Taking it now!! :D

vikki_s
05-21-2012, 10:52 AM
dhakaldoo and gk_2000, let this not drive you crazy. This thread was created solely because one crazy person did not have the money to go to group therapy. So he created a forum where he could talk out his issues, and have the group help him out.
Dont lose your sanity too now.

psagarn almost sounds like an anti's trojan horse, designed to make us all go nuts :)

Nop its not just you! it DOES drive one crazy...........

psagarn
05-21-2012, 11:47 AM
dhakaldoo and gk_2000, let this not drive you crazy. This thread was created solely because one crazy person did not have the money to go to group therapy. So he created a forum where he could talk out his issues, and have the group help him out.
Dont lose your sanity too now.

psagarn almost sounds like an anti's trojan horse, designed to make us all go nuts :)
Thought about replying but then saw all the red dots on ur profile.

pmpforgc
05-21-2012, 01:03 PM
In conjunction with the earlier post-

Our ancient sensibilities were based on true science.

So, science with the ancient Indians- was so advanced at the time in India that the civilization flourished. examples- cities were built with drainage systems- rivers were spared from pollution by engaging polluting activities in the southern side (most rivers in india flow- north-south, so the thought was- if you use the northern fresh water for daily human use, use the southern side for other uses- so by the time the river flows another 100 miles downstream, it is able to dilute itself and purify).
Vastu-shastra- based on science- east was where sun rises- so all morning activities- praying, exercise, were to north east- to take advantage of the rising morning sun-when the sun's rays are most beneficial to the human body.
Ayurveda- ex: Tulsi has great stabilising benefits and gives equilibrium to the body, it cures a lot of infections and tulsi plants also purify the air by removing monoxides. Same with neem to an extent. turmeric is an excellent antibiotic. Ancient indians (scientists-sages) knew this- and created a code of conduct-whereby they tied everything they knew was good for humanity into a simple daily practice ritual and combined it with some ritual associated with god. So, people were told- plant tulsi in your front and back yard- to give it importance, they were told to worship it- so proper attention can be given to its upkeep- fables and stories were written around it. Same is the case with hundreds and thousands of other things.
The vedas -rig veda , ayur-veda and shastras are full of thousands of these simple tricks and scientific discoveries, they are the purest forms of scientific, organic methods to purify, uplift the human body and environment. They are berift of any ritual. They are scientific journals- tested and tried by vedic men and women of the time for the benefit of the entire human race. Anybody that knows sanskrit can read these scientific journals and acknowledge that they were written for the welfare of the entire human race. They belong to the world.

What I see in America of tommorrow, is the Vedic India - In some ways, India (Bharatvarsha) and Indians 5000 years back also had an evolved scientifically proven method to lead a more balanced, environmentally friendly and organic lifestyle.
America is headed towards that- although it is a good 100-200 years back to when we can truly shun plastic from our life and lead a good life- But today- Leading universities in europe and USA are acknowledging the thought and the science that belongs to India.
Eastern thought and vedic science is increasingly being discussed and analyzed.

India has lost its pure civilizational essence- rivers are polluted, massive deforestation and end of organic farming, plastic and junk food everywhere. Urban indians have lost their touch with the civilization. Culture has been left to just wearing Indian dress at times. Indian languages are begining to go extinct- forget sanskrit. In the last 2000 years- creptic corrupt practices and nonsense rituals without understanding the correct science has corroded the Indian mindset. Indians in the last 250 years started questioning their rituals- some of these had crept in through dilution of the correct philosophy and correctly we are shunning these out. Dowry, caste, and other such things need to be shunned out. But in order to look modern, we cannot shun out important other things that are beneficial and still hold true.

In that sense- America and the western world are beggining to question the western lifestyle- more organic farming, more of herbs are being used in daily life and yoga and meditation are gaining respect.
Western thought is engaging with eastern philosophies.

This is really what was great at a time when our ancient ceivilization was really at its peak. In last 30 yrs we had lost most of the good values/ ethics/ family values ( I want to make strong argument about loss of family values as we have gunda raj not only in politics but in family culture too. Any one who can abuse others with out giving regards to others or their opinions is regarded as great in extended families/relations with each other)

We are loosing in education with spread of private institutions as profit center instead of old quality of education. In education we are just looking how many engieers/doctors etc. we are producing. But we dont know that our current engineers are worst then old ITI technicians. Results are given very high to fill seats at private profit centers.

If you can earn money , no matter how, you are regarded great and successfull in the society. There is no shame in society for loosing its values/ morals and ethics. Compring that to western culture, baring at top level, still moral and ethics in day to day life are evident.

We are loosing in agriculture and environment front. Recent years ( In last decade or so) because of peoples movement towards urban life and govt policies ignoring importancce of agriculture and food supply we are most likely to become dependent again to feed our billions populations. With incresing capture of our politicians by the multinationals like monsanto/cargil etc. we will loose ground in agric soon.

No need to talk about environment part as we can feel that when we go there.

We are making lot progress in the Inflated property values (thanks to builders/black money/ nri/ population growth/ industrialization/ politicians hold on permits etc.) Gold prices ( thanks to drowery/ loss of confidence in rupee/ our love for gold etc.) Babas and sadhus, corruption level (no one talks below 1000 crores now ). Luckily our crime crate is not that high looking to population level. We are probably getting good hold in population control lately (because now it has become too costly to raise kids) .

Looks like our sadhus are trying to maintain aryuveda. But still I dont understand how we are growing so many traditional medicine, inspite of loss of forest and agriculture lands. May be some one needs to look what is inside all these costly bottles of judibutties.

Our kids are making excellent progress towards western culture ( which we despise for long) . Valentine dayis celebrated more in India , rave and hukka parties etc have become day to day affair, Cricket has lost its orginal ethics and has become commercial enterprise (harming lot other sports in the country)

Medical treatment for common man is really commercialized. If you can not produce money, you can not enter any hospital , even if you are dying because of accidental cause. You might get even before reaching there, because of our traffic situation and manners, as well as our excellent infrastucture growth in par with population.

I am sure there can be many points added in favour of excellent life of the common man in currently emerging India. I am sure those who are planning for RTI are making a great long term decision.

vikki_s
05-21-2012, 01:26 PM
Oh yeah, those red dots are making me lose sleep :( I see red all the time.
Could you please give me the number of your therapist?

Oh wait, crap, thats right - you dont have one! :D

dude..get a life - move on, or stay on this thread, and keep entertaining.

Thought about replying but then saw all the red dots on ur profile.

psagarn
05-21-2012, 02:05 PM
Could you please give me the number of your therapist?

What's with the obsession of demeaning people that you hardly know. What does it get you, a fake ego boost? Feel bad for the people who have to be around you.

Oh wait, crap, thats right - you dont have one! :D
Yes, I do not have a therapist...coz I don't need one, why are you looking for a therapist? Oh wait, dont bother answering, I get it.

dude..get a life - move on, or stay on this thread, and keep entertaining.
Glad to be useful to people here even if that means people getting entertained at my expense. Keeps people like you off the street which is a big help to the society. What are you doing other than calling names?

permfiling
05-21-2012, 03:00 PM
This is really what was great at a time when our ancient ceivilization was really at its peak. In last 30 yrs we had lost most of the good values/ ethics/ family values ( I want to make strong argument about loss of family values as we have gunda raj not only in politics but in family culture too. Any one who can abuse others with out giving regards to others or their opinions is regarded as great in extended families/relations with each other)

We are loosing in education with spread of private institutions as profit center instead of old quality of education. In education we are just looking how many engieers/doctors etc. we are producing. But we dont know that our current engineers are worst then old ITI technicians. Results are given very high to fill seats at private profit centers.

If you can earn money , no matter how, you are regarded great and successfull in the society. There is no shame in society for loosing its values/ morals and ethics. Compring that to western culture, baring at top level, still moral and ethics in day to day life are evident.

We are loosing in agriculture and environment front. Recent years ( In last decade or so) because of peoples movement towards urban life and govt policies ignoring importancce of agriculture and food supply we are most likely to become dependent again to feed our billions populations. With incresing capture of our politicians by the multinationals like monsanto/cargil etc. we will loose ground in agric soon.

No need to talk about environment part as we can feel that when we go there.

We are making lot progress in the Inflated property values (thanks to builders/black money/ nri/ population growth/ industrialization/ politicians hold on permits etc.) Gold prices ( thanks to drowery/ loss of confidence in rupee/ our love for gold etc.) Babas and sadhus, corruption level (no one talks below 1000 crores now ). Luckily our crime crate is not that high looking to population level. We are probably getting good hold in population control lately (because now it has become too costly to raise kids) .

Looks like our sadhus are trying to maintain aryuveda. But still I dont understand how we are growing so many traditional medicine, inspite of loss of forest and agriculture lands. May be some one needs to look what is inside all these costly bottles of judibutties.

Our kids are making excellent progress towards western culture ( which we despise for long) . Valentine dayis celebrated more in India , rave and hukka parties etc have become day to day affair, Cricket has lost its orginal ethics and has become commercial enterprise (harming lot other sports in the country)

Medical treatment for common man is really commercialized. If you can not produce money, you can not enter any hospital , even if you are dying because of accidental cause. You might get even before reaching there, because of our traffic situation and manners, as well as our excellent infrastucture growth in par with population.

I am sure there can be many points added in favour of excellent life of the common man in currently emerging India. I am sure those who are planning for RTI are making a great long term decision.

All the above points about india are great but we never united to fight off all the invaders except for few kings. The basic right and necessity of all human beings is to defend themselves but ppl at that time never did as the kings never agreed to a common thing. This is what india should learn from western civilizations is to work as a team which would have preserved all the great things came out of indus civilization...who knows india might have invented many things.

gk_2000
05-21-2012, 04:59 PM
All the above points about india are great but we never united to fight off all the invaders except for few kings. The basic right and necessity of all human beings is to defend themselves but ppl at that time never did as the kings never agreed to a common thing. This is what india should learn from western civilizations is to work as a team which would have preserved all the great things came out of indus civilization...who knows india might have invented many things.

This is what happens when kings put each other on ignore ..

mikoo
05-21-2012, 09:21 PM
All right ,
Point #1 - I request - dhakaldoo and gk_2000-- to not write in this thread if they do not have anything constructive to add to the FIRST ORIGINAL POST- Read the first post of this thread again ,if you don't know what discussion is going on.

Point # 2- I have extensive research/medical background- (I know a thing or two about how modern science works- formation of a hypothesis and experiments to test that hypothesis etc etc............

Old cultures had passed on many important observational discoveries by word of mouth to their younger generations - Indian culture is/was one of them.

That is the reason modern scientists are always 'confirming' the age old folklore or observational facts which our/their ancesters have collected over thousands of years.

Not all of them are correct but most are being confirmed correct as they have stood the test of time(in other words - people would not have followed them over thousands of years if they would have been harmful/incorrect.)

I humbly welcome more thoughts ,without anyone getting too arrogant and pushing their views as the 'holy truth'.

Remember -Truth is always grey -never black or white - or as our statisticians like to say - follows the the bell curve - lies in the middle.

signed -Global citizen -but proud to be indian.

gk_2000
05-21-2012, 09:59 PM
All right ,
Point #1 - I request - dhakaldoo and gk_2000-- to not write in this thread if they do not have anything constructive to add to the FIRST ORIGINAL POST- Read the first post of this thread again ,if you don't know what discussion is going on.

Point # 2- I have extensive research/medical background- (I know a thing or two about how modern science works- formation of a hypothesis and experiments to test that hypothesis etc etc............

Old cultures had passed on many important observational discoveries by word of mouth to their younger generations - Indian culture is/was one of them.

That is the reason modern scientists are always 'confirming' the age old folklore or observational facts which our/their ancesters have collected over thousands of years.

Not all of them are correct but most are being confirmed correct as they have stood the test of time(in other words - people would not have followed them over thousands of years if they would have been harmful/incorrect.)

I humbly welcome more thoughts ,without anyone getting too arrogant and pushing their views as the 'holy truth'.

Remember -Truth is always grey -never black or white - or as our statisticians like to say - follows the the bell curve - lies in the middle.

signed -Global citizen -but proud to be indian.

Mr. Garfield: I object to your below statement:

"... most are being confirmed correct as they have stood the test of time..."

Is this part of the scientific process you mention?

And FYI, you will find many posts from me that is relevant -- but after the OP chose to put me on ignore he ended the possibility of "meaningful" discussion.
If you want meaningful discussion you need to think with mind, not with sheer emotion. And by reacting in the way he did he is showing he is not mature enough to be discussing!

dhakaldoo
05-22-2012, 05:55 AM
All right ,
Point #1 - I request - dhakaldoo and gk_2000-- to not write in this thread if they do not have anything constructive to add to the FIRST ORIGINAL POST- Read the first post of this thread again ,if you don't know what discussion is going on.

signed -Global citizen -but proud to be indian.

Check out my first post and second. I was sincere untill mr. you know who started how every body else is a fool and what he says is only correct.
If somebody is not open to listening to other side he should not simply open a thread under the name of "Discussion"

And by constructive if you mean agreeing to what ever he says, that is ridiculous.


Any way..
I left the conversation not because I dont have more to add to it or am dumb struck by his brilliant reply to my post, but because I have seen his statements to each line of mine which shows how he jumps to conclusions about my lack of knowledge or inability to understand sarcasm giving me a lesson on science and history.

It is amusing that you guys do not find his replies full of arrogance and drawn baseless conclusions about how dumb and idiot other's are.

psagarn
05-22-2012, 07:50 AM
And FYI, you will find many posts from me that is relevant -- but after the OP chose to put me on ignore he ended the possibility of "meaningful" discussion.
If you want meaningful discussion you need to think with mind, not with sheer emotion. And by reacting in the way he did he is showing he is not mature enough to be discussing!
After posting the following as the very first reply to this thread, how can one not form an opinion that nothing good is going to come from this guy.
Most of you guys seem to be still inside their egg-shells.....Have some self-respect.
What I am saying is, you have a lens stitched to your eyebrow by being in India too long.

psagarn
05-22-2012, 08:20 AM
Check out my first post and second. I was sincere untill mr. you know who started how every body else is a fool and what he says is only correct.
If somebody is not open to listening to other side he should not simply open a thread under the name of "Discussion"
Where did I say that everyone or even you are a fool? "Failing to understand" does not mean that you are a fool. Here is what I replied to your first post and frankly it puts more blame on myself than anyone else for people being not able to understand the true intent of this post.

Thanks for the sincere post but like many others you fail to understand the true meaning of culture. Sadly, I am tired of my attempts at explaining it and frankly I suck at it.....that is why there are still people here who don't understand the true intent of this post. Appreciate you taking time to post though.

And once you formed an opinion about me, it was going to be end up the way it did.

And by constructive if you mean agreeing to what ever he says, that is ridiculous.

Check my replies to other posts that were not abusive, like those from Amitjoey and RKG. I really asked for more input even though they too criticized the current situation in India. Ever thought that you could be wrong?

Any way..
I left the conversation not because I dont have more to add to it or am dumb struck by his brilliant reply to my post, but because I have seen his statements to each line of mine which shows how he jumps to conclusions about my lack of knowledge or inability to understand sarcasm giving me a lesson on science and history.

You come in with a totally biased perception and even after providing you solid scientific evidence, your position that "Indian culture and its ancient wisdom is crap" could not be changed. You say, wikipedia and my link to it for X-RAY machine is crap, did you even bother googling about the use of X-RAY machines in shoe stores in 30s and 40s? IT IS A FACT THAT THESE MACHINES WERE IN USE IN THOSE STORES, you believing it or not does not matter. And how does my replying to each line of your post leads you to the conclusion that I "jump to conclusions ......"? Pardon my lack of ability to put 2 and 2 together.

It is amusing that you guys do not find his replies full of arrogance and drawn baseless conclusions about how dumb and idiot other's are.
Again, please provide examples where I was arrogant before you guys started it.

rkg000
05-22-2012, 09:30 AM
If we believe in theory of relativity, then the excercise of proving one right or wrong becomes futile. But we do noetheless because the idea of proving others wrong and oneself right is too tempting to pass by. And there is no denying that this has happened on both sides of the argument on this thread. And do we really want to get into "You started first. No! you started first" :).

The first few pages were very informative, and both sides made decent arguments, and since then it has been downhill, why? Becuase everybody ran out of valid arguments?

psagarn
05-22-2012, 11:56 AM
If we believe in theory of relativity, then the excercise of proving one right or wrong becomes futile. But we do noetheless because the idea of proving others wrong and oneself right is too tempting to pass by. And there is no denying that this has happened on both sides of the argument on this thread. And do we really want to get into "You started first. No! you started first" :).

The first few pages were very informative, and both sides made decent arguments, and since then it has been downhill, why? Becuase everybody ran out of valid arguments?
I understand the value of this post of yours and also acknowledge that this is the correct thing to do now. Having said that I would also add that I do not have any interest in proving others wrong unless pushed into a corner.
@All:
Please use this thread to further the cause of saving whatever is left of our true Indian values and traditions. It does not matter whether you live in India or US...it does not matter you mingle with people from other cultures or not...it does not matter whether you are planning to stay here in US or go back to India.....what matters is that you realize that there is some value in some, if not all, of our age old customs and that these gifts from our ancestors need to be passed on to our future generations.

If you strongly feel that our ancestor's system has been full of crap from day one and you want others to be convinced of your opinion, please ignore this thread and start a new one.

dhakaldoo
05-22-2012, 04:24 PM
Its like addiction to gambling... I cant get this off my head! Hence posting.
I apologize for any bitterness that I have from the previous encounters!

psagarn,
About Being Arrogant and this does include examples after you claim “I” started it all (just to clarify) Please note that I am not including mentioning your latest reply to my post where you are asking for Gurudakshina.
Where did I say that everyone or even you are a fool? "Failing to understand" does not mean that you are a fool. Here is what I replied to your first post and frankly it puts more blame on myself than anyone else for people being not able to understand the true intent of this post.
You may not have meant it but it still appears to be so. Putting words like please and I suck at explaining does not always put you as humble. And it can be interpreted otherwise.
You have no idea how science works. What about this?? Why do you think you do?
About Jumping to conclusions:
and you are mad at them because? Why is it that you want to impose your "rational" thinking on them. Why can't you let them do what they want as long as they do not harm others? If I do not wash clothes on a particular day why does that bother you?
I was just giving example of how the science becomes superstition. U jumped to say I am mad at them and I go and tell them what to do and what not and even though it does not hurt me and what not.
Tulsi is science and not tradition but the unbroken link for establishing lineage, Y chromosome, is not science but a tradition and that too an evil one.
right from the beginning YOU assumed that ‘I think’ Y chromosome theory is crap and not science. When I clearly said right from the beginning, although it science it doesn’t need to be valid for today world
Check my replies to other posts that were not abusive, like those from Amitjoey and RKG. I really asked for more input even though they too criticized the current situation in India. Ever thought that you could be wrong?
Statements like :
and If the couple is in love, go ahead and marry but do not have kids.
Personal lives? Producing kids is not personal
Are absolutely outrageous and ridiculous. And one cannot react to these statements sanely. Yes these sentences did drive me and I am sure many people crazy.
So when I said I support you gk_2000 because of your ridiculous theory about following the ancient science of Y chromosome gotra strictly, it all went down and you started taking your frustration out?
Religious system? Can you please name the ancient religious system that you are talking about? Do you have a word for religion in ancient Indian languages like Sanskrit? again the same
I sure knew you will come up with the reply later when you did that origin of Hindu word was from British period etc etc. Even though the word Hindu wasn’t there, the religion or dharma was the same. Manusmruti and 4 Vedas, Geeta are still called as part and principles of Hindu dharma. And that’s what our scientists did not want to go against and take a risk of public wrath or disobey their own strong beliefs unlike western scientists Copernicus etc.
But of course you ignored this fact! All you could comment on was the technical point of word HINDU and started providing ‘Gyan’ about history.
You come in with a totally biased perception and even after providing you solid scientific evidence, your position that "Indian culture and its ancient wisdom is crap" could not be changed. …..
Again same. “Really? a link from Wiki” was not saying wiki is crap or the xray example is crap . IT was more for you as a person who knows everything about science and India and true culture and religion would put a wiki link as an example doesn’t put much credibility to his research.
And again this was a angry response to you sentence “ you have no idea how science works and you fail to understand ..blah blah”
Although it is in fact true that wiki is not accepted as a credible source in many cases as it can be edited by anybody (most articles except controversial ones)
So here you jumped to conclusion, again by saying “Dhakaldoo says Wiki is Crap and She is smartest of all etc

That says it all. More belief in movie scripts than the epics of your ancestors...
Again same thing. More belief on movie script??? What are you saying? It’s a quote and It is infact valid looking at the kind of things humans have done to this earth. See how many animals are on the way of extinction and list goes on. And all you got from this was to ridicule about the fact that the quote came from Matrix?????
. You agree that something is science and factual but you do not want it to be known to the masses because you have some insane theory about its consequences. And that is exactly what these fanatics do.
Have you ever thought why ancient wise people also chose to hide many scientific reasons behind the traditions from the masses? They considered the current situation too.
Have you considered the thought that YOU are being a fanatic here? You are putting words into my mouth by saying that I don’t want the truth to be reaching masses and all that crap. Where right from beginning I said you need to evaluate the truth and see the if it is worth telling it to masses or no who might not be capable of understanding the true meaning of it.
Example??? How many people who know scientific truth that producing girl or a boy depends on man and not women and still blame women for producing girl child.
Again I am not obsessed with this feticide topic. But it is one of the Major problem india has. And making statements about importance of Y chromosom is not going to make things better.
Look at china, they went against human rights to control population ( and I am not supporting it). did what they can to stop the growth and succeeded. . and here we have, people who either kill girl child or keep producing children until they have a boy.
So why cant somebody suggest we hide the fact about Y chromosom and preserving linage? why only this truth has to be shouted out loud and not the others?

Again, please provide examples where I was arrogant before you guys started it.
So you see, when you replied to my first post and my second post you clearly fished for sentences that you think would show my lack of knowledge, who btw never claimed to be pundit of anything. You absolutely did not comment on the valid points because of your stand point is all Ancient traditions are gold.
Example..
Yes, it was opened for a discussion and not to "educate" people about the uselessness of Indian culture.
And hence the conclusion that you are not open to listen to people saying bad things about Indian culture. Why do you have a problem if somebody is pointing out bad things? Just because you think they are good doesn’t mean they are actually are and otherwise.
You made an opinion that those who say anything against Indian culture are bad people. You even gave a bad rep on my first post, so I now have 10 positive and one negative feedback on that post. I know you will deny that though..
Like you yourself said, Have you considered that you can be wrong?? Have you considered that you think you know too much about true Indian culture? Have you considered that you have been blinded by ancient Indian glory so much that you forget the fact that times change?
You are the one who wants to ignore the problems. Not me. I have tried to put the facts, things that have happened are happening and will happen if we don’t act on problems.
I mean, you have no answer to the current problems and there you are, worried about producing genetically defective human beings which are outcome of inter-gotra marriages? And you are not even sure that the current gotras are documented correctly for all people. And what about rest of the world? who don’t follow such traditions? And why is only Indian tradition the greatest of all. We need to learn to respect all cultures and take what’s best from everything.
We don’t even know if the earth is going to survive the climate change or the nuclear war which may technically happen any time! Be current and don’t live in past glory. That’s what happened to Indian science which is forgotten.

Sorry for extra long post and I truely hope I can refrain myself from bothering you again as much as possible!!!. :)

pardesibabu
05-22-2012, 04:35 PM
I fell asleep reading this long post. Please type short replies.

dhakaldoo
05-22-2012, 04:55 PM
I fell asleep reading this long post. Please type short replies.

Awwww! :)

gk_2000
05-22-2012, 05:13 PM
I understand the value of this post of yours and also acknowledge that this is the correct thing to do now. Having said that I would also add that I do not have any interest in proving others wrong unless pushed into a corner.
@All:
Please use this thread to further the cause of saving whatever is left of our true Indian values and traditions. It does not matter whether you live in India or US...it does not matter you mingle with people from other cultures or not...it does not matter whether you are planning to stay here in US or go back to India.....what matters is that you realize that there is some value in some, if not all, of our age old customs and that these gifts from our ancestors need to be passed on to our future generations.

If you strongly feel that our ancestor's system has been full of crap from day one and you want others to be convinced of your opinion, please ignore this thread and start a new one.

PS: Right here, you said it: That you don't understand how all the things that were said does not connect with the topic at hand. There is news for you: They are not irrelevant. And whether you will listen further, I am in doubt, so I won't waste my energy :p
Also, in your last para, I don't know whom you are referring to. If it is me, then once again it is totally stretching what I said, too far

Your reprimand of my first posts earlier also is unjustified. They all fit in the discussion. You just fail to see it, because you are thinking with emotion, not with your intellect

gk_2000
05-22-2012, 05:15 PM
I fell asleep reading this long post. Please type short replies.

I get you. I am usually done reading long posts in a couple of seconds ... "blah, blah"

psagarn
05-22-2012, 06:47 PM
@Dhakaldoo: So you don't want to end it, do ya (could not resist using "ya")? After RKG's neutral comment, there was no need to go that long in your reply and you could have easily been a bigger person by choosing not to respond but boy was it hard for you. Anyways, I am going to grab this opportunity and give it a try....lets see if I can refrain from continuing the argument. Wish me luck.

dhakaldoo
05-22-2012, 07:11 PM
@Dhakaldoo: So you don't want to end it, do ya (could not resist using "ya")? After RKG's neutral comment, there was no need to go that long in your reply and you could have easily been a bigger person by choosing not to respond but boy was it hard for you. Anyways, I am going to grab this opportunity and give it a try....lets see if I can refrain from continuing the argument. Wish me luck.

Now you get it! I like that you are talking like an american now dont ya! :)

Unfortunately, My reply had been typed out earlier. Ofcourse I had changed it here and there after your reply. But I had to post it and get it out!

RKG rocks! and total respect for what he said. Hence apologies were mentioned in the beginning and in the end. Sorry for being the smaller person here.

You are welcome to post your comment.
I made my points and I am done.

sac-r-ten
05-24-2012, 11:58 AM
Since the OP mentioned about preserving our values/culture and passing them down to our kids, i would like to share few things that i received from a good friend. It a long post, so read in leisure. If you believe in them, practice and let your kids also know, if not then just ignore.

Why do we light a lamp?
In almost every Indian home a lamp is lit daily before the altar of
the Lord. In some houses it is lit at dawn, in some, twice a day – at
dawn and dusk – and in a few it is maintained continuously (akhanda
deepa). All auspicious functions commence with the lighting of the
lamp, which is often maintained right through the occasion.
Light symbolizes knowledge, and darkness, ignorance. The Lord is the
"Knowledge Principle" (chaitanya) who is the source, the enlivener and
the illuminator of all knowledge. Hence light is worshiped as the Lord
himself.
Knowledge removes ignorance just as light removes darkness. Also
knowledge is a lasting inner wealth by which all outer achievement can
be accomplished. Hence we light the lamp to bow down to knowledge as
the greatest of all forms of wealth
Why not light a bulb or tube light? That too would remove darkness.
But the traditional oil lamp has a further spiritual significance. The
oil or ghee in the lamp symbolizes our vaasanas or negative tendencies
and the wick, the ego. When lit by spiritual knowledge, the vaasanas
get slowly exhausted and the ego too finally perishes. The flame of a
lamp always burns upwards. Similarly we should acquire such knowledge
as to take us towards higher ideals.

Whilst lighting the lamp we thus pray:
Deepajyothi parabrahma
Deepa sarva tamopahaha
Deepena saadhyate saram
Sandhyaa deepo namostutea

I prostrate to the dawn/dusk lamp; whose light is the Knowledge
Principle (the Supreme Lord), which removes the darkness of ignorance
and by which all can be achieved in life.

2. Why do we have a prayer room?
Most Indian homes have a prayer room or altar. A lamp is lit and the
Lord worshipped each day. Other spiritual practices like japa
(repetition of the Lord's name), meditation, paaraayana (reading of
the scriptures), prayers, and devotional singing etc is also done
here. Special worship is done on auspicious occasions like birthdays,
anniversaries, festivals and the like. Each member of the family –
young or old – communes with and worships the Divine here.
The Lord is the entire creation. He is therefore the true owner of the
house we live in too. The prayer room is the Master room of the house.
We are the earthly occupants of His property. This notion rids us of
false pride and possessiveness.
The ideal attitude to take is to regard the Lord as the true owner of
our homes and us as caretakers of His home. But if that is rather
difficult, we could at least think of Him as a very welcome guest.
Just as we would house an important guest in the best comfort, so too
we felicitate the Lord's presence in our homes by having a prayer room
or altar, which is, at all times, kept clean and well-decorated.

Also the Lord is all pervading. To remind us that He resides in our
homes with us, we have prayer rooms. Without the grace of the Lord, no
task can be successfully or easily accomplished. We invoke His grace
by communing with Him in the prayer room each day and on special
occasions.

Each room in a house is dedicated to a specific function like the
bedroom for resting, the drawing room to receive guests, the kitchen
for cooking etc. The furniture, decor and the atmosphere of each room
are made conducive to the purpose it serves. So too for the purpose of
meditation, worship and prayer, we should have a conducive atmosphere
– hence the need for a prayer room.

Sacred thoughts and sound vibrations pervade the place and influence
the minds of those who spend time there. Spiritual thoughts and
vibrations accumulated through regular meditation, worship and
chanting done there pervade the prayer room. Even when we are tired or
agitated, by just sitting in the prayer room for a while, we feel
calm, rejuvenated and spiritually uplifted.

3. Why do we do namaste ?
Indians greet each other with namaste. The two palms are placed
together in front of the chest and the head bows whilst saying the
word namaste. This greeting is for all – people younger than us, of
our own age, those older than friends, even strangers and us.
There are five forms of formal traditional greeting enjoined in the
shaastras of which namaskaram is one. This is understood as
prostration but it actually refers to paying homage as we do today
when we greet each other with a namaste.
Namaste could be just a casual or formal greeting, a cultural
convention or an act of worship. However there is much more to it than
meets the eye. In Sanskrit namah + te = namaste. It means – I bow to
you – my greetings, salutations or prostration to you. Namaha can also
be literally interpreted as "na ma" (not mine). It has a spiritual
significance of negating or reducing one's ego in the presence of
another.

The real meeting between people is the meeting of their minds. When we
greet another, we do so with namaste , which means, "may our minds
meet," indicated by the folded palms placed before the chest. The
bowing down of the head is a gracious form of extending friendship in
love and humility.

The spiritual meaning is even deeper. The life force, the divinity,
the Self or the Lord in me is the same in all.. Recognizing this
oneness with the meeting of the palms, we salute with head bowed the
Divinity in the person we meet. That is why sometimes, we close our
eyes as we do namaste to a revered person or the Lord – as if to look
within. The gesture is often accompanied by words like "Ram Ram", "Jai
Shri Krishna", "Namo Narayana", "Jai Siya Ram", "Om Shanti" etc –
indicating the recognition of this divinity.

When we know this significance, our greeting does not remain just a
superficial gesture or word but paves the way for a deeper communion
with another in an atmosphere of love and respect.

4. Why do we prostrate before parents and elders?
Indians prostrate before their parents, elders, teachers and noble
souls by touching their feet. The elder in turn blesses us by placing
his or her hand on or over our heads. Prostration is done daily, when
we meet elders and particularly on important occasions like the
beginning of a new task, birthdays, festivals etc. In certain
traditional circles, prostration is accompanied by abhivaadana, which
serves to introduce one-self, announce one's family and social
stature.

Man stands on his feet. Touching the feet in prostration is a sign of
respect for the age, maturity, nobility and divinity that our elders
personify. It symbolizes our recognition of their selfless love for us
and the sacrifices they have done for our welfare. It is a way of
humbly acknowledging the greatness of another. This tradition reflects
the strong family ties, which has been one of India's enduring
strengths.

The good wishes (Sankalpa) and blessings (aashirvaada) of elders are
highly valued in India. We prostrate to seek them. Good thoughts
create positive vibrations. Good wishes springing from a heart full of
love, divinity and nobility have a tremendous strength. When we
prostrate with humility and respect, we invoke the good wishes and
blessings of elders which flow in the form of positive energy to
envelop us. This is why the posture assumed whether it is in the
standing or prone position, enables the entire body to receive the
energy thus received.

The different forms of showing respect are :
Pratuthana – rising to welcome a person.
Namaskaara – paying homage in the form of namaste (discussed
separately in this book).
Upasangrahan – touching the feet of elders or teachers.
Shaashtaanga – prostrating fully with the feet, knees, stomach, chest,
forehead and arms touching the ground in front of the elder..
Pratyabivaadana – returning a greeting.

Rules are prescribed in our scriptures as to who should prostrate to
whom. Wealth, family name, age, moral strength and spiritual knowledge
in ascending order of importance qualified men to receive respect.
This is why a king though the ruler of the land, would prostrate
before a spiritual master. Epics like the Ramayana and Mahabharata
have many stories highlighting this aspect.

continued...

sac-r-ten
05-24-2012, 12:00 PM
5. Why do we wear marks (tilak, pottu and the like) on the forehead?
The tilak or pottu invokes a feeling of sanctity in the wearer and
others. It is recognized as a religious mark. Its form and colour vary
according to one's caste, religious sect or the form of the Lord
worshipped.
In earlier times, the four castes (based on varna or colour) –
Brahmana, Kshatriya, Vaishya and Sudra – applied marks differently.
The brahmin applied a white chandan mark signifying purity, as his
profession was of a priestly or academic nature. The kshatriya applied
a red kumkum mark signifying valour as he belonged to warrior races.
The vaishya wore a yellow kesar or turmeric mark signifying prosperity
as he was a businessman or trader devoted to creation of wealth. The
sudra applied a black bhasma, kasturi or charcoal mark signifying
service as he supported the work of the other three divisions.
Also Vishnu worshippers apply a chandan tilak of the shape of "U",
Shiva worshippers a tripundra (of the shape of "º ") of bhasma,
Devi worshippers a red dot of kumkum and so on).

The tilak cover the spot between the eyebrows, which is the seat of
memory and thinking. It is known as the Aajna Chakra in the language
of Yoga. The tilak is applied with the prayer – "May I remember the
Lord. May this pious feeling pervade all my activities. May I be
righteous in my deeds." Even when we temporarily forget this prayerful
attitude the mark on another reminds us of our resolve. The tilak is
thus a blessing of the Lord and a protection against wrong tendencies
and forces.
The entire body emanates energy in the form of electromagnetic waves –
the forehead and the subtle spot between the eyebrows especially so.
That is why worry generates heat and causes a headache. The tilak and
pottu cools the forehead, protects us and prevents energy loss.
Sometimes the entire forehead is covered with chandan or bhasma. Using
plastic reusable "stick bindis" is not very beneficial, even though it
serves the purpose of decoration.


6. Why do we not touch papers, books and people with the feet?

To Indians, knowledge is sacred and divine. So it must be given
respect at all times. Nowadays we separate subjects as sacred and
secular. But in ancient India every subject – academic or spiritual –
was considered divine and taught by the guru in the gurukula.

The custom of not stepping on educational tools is a frequent reminder
of the high position accorded to knowledge in Indian culture. From an
early age, this wisdom fosters in us a deep reverence for books and
education. This is also the reason why we worship books, vehicles and
instruments once a year on Saraswathi Pooja or Ayudha Pooja day,
dedicated to the Goddess of Learning. In fact, each day before
starting our studies, we pray:

Saraswati namasthubhyam
Varade kaama roopini
Vidyaarambham karishyaami
Sidhirbhavatu me sadaa

O Goddess Saraswati, the giver of
Boons and fulfiller of wishes,
I prostrate to You before
starting my studies.
May you always fulfill me?

6a. To touch another with the feet is considered an act of
misdemeanor. Why is this so?

Man is regarded as the most beautiful, living breathing temple of the
Lord! Therefore touching another with the feet is akin to
disrespecting the divinity within him or her. This calls for an
immediate apology, which is offered with reverence and humility.


7. Why do we apply the holy ash?

This shows extreme case of applying ash(this is toomuch and not commonly done

The ash of any burnt object is not regarded as holy ash. Bhasma (the
holy ash) is the ash from the homa (sacrificial fire) where special
wood along with ghee and other herbs is offered as worship of the
Lord. Or the deity is worshipped by pouring ash as abhisheka and is
then distributed as bhasma.

Bhasma is generally applied on the forehead. Some apply it on certain
parts of the body like the upper arms, chest etc. Some ascetics rub it
all over the body. Many consume a pinch of it each time they receive
it.

The word bhasma means, "that by which our sins are destroyed and the
Lord is remembered". Bha implied bhartsanam ("to destroy") and sma
implies smaranam ("to remember"). The application of bhasma therefore
signifies destruction of the evil and remembrance of the divine.
Bhasma is called vibhuti (which means "glory") as it gives glory to
one who applies it and raksha (which means a source of protection) as
it protects the wearer from ill health and evil, by purifying him or
her.

Homa (offering of oblations into the fire with sacred chants)
signifies the offering or surrender of the ego and egocentric desires
into the flame of knowledge or a noble and selfless cause. The
consequent ash signifies the purity of the mind, which results from
such actions.

Also the fire of knowledge burns the oblation and wood signifying
ignorance and inertia respectively. The ash we apply indicates that we
should burn false identification with the body and become free of the
limitations of birth and death. This is not to be misconstrued as a
morose reminder of death but as a powerful pointer towards the fact
that time and tide wait for none.

Bhasma is specially associated with Lord Shiva who applies it all over
His body. Shiva devotes apply bhasma as a tripundra (the form of
"&ord�¬; "). When applied with a red spot at the center, the mark
symbolizes Shiva-Shakti (the unity of energy and matter that creates
the entire seen and unseen universe).

Bhasma has medicinal value and is used in many ayurvedic medicines. It
absorbs excess moisture from the body and prevents colds and
headaches. The Upanishads say that the famous Mrityunjaya mantra
should be chanted whilst applying ash on the forehead.


Tryambakam yajaamahe
Sugandhim pushtivardhanam
Urvaa rukamiva bhandhanaan
Mrytyor muksheeyamaa amrutaat

"We worship the three-eyed Lord Shiva who nourishes and spread
fragrance in our lives. May He free us from the shackles of sorrow,
change and death – effortlessly, like the fall of a rip brinjal from
its stem."


Continued...

sac-r-ten
05-24-2012, 12:02 PM
8. Why do offer food to the Lord before eating it?

Indians make an offering of food to the Lord and later partake of it
as prasaada – a holy gift from the Lord. In our daily ritualistic
worship (pooja) too we offer naivedyam (food) to the Lord.

The Lord is omnipotent and omniscient. Man is a part, while the Lord
is the totality. All that we do is by His strength and knowledge
alone. Hence what we receive in life as a result of our actions is
really His alone. We acknowledge this through the act of offering food
to Him. This is exemplified by the Hindi words "tera tujko arpan"– I
offer what is Yours to You. Thereafter it is akin to His gift to us,
graced by His divine touch.


Knowing this, our entire attitude to food and the act of eating
changes. The food offered will naturally be pure and the best. We
share what we get with others before consuming it. We do not demand,
complain or criticise the quality of the food we get. We eat it with
cheerful acceptance ( prasaada buddhi).




Before we partake of our daily meals we first sprinkle water around
the plate as an act of purification. Five morsels of food are placed
on the side of the plate acknowledging the debt owed by us to the
Divine forces ( devta runa) for their benign grace and protection, our
ancestors (pitru runa) for giving us their lineage and a family
culture, the sages (rishi runa) as our religion and culture have been
"realised", aintained and handed down to us by them, our fellow beings
( manushya runa) who constitute society without the support of which
we could not live as we do and other living beings (bhuta runa) for
serving us selflessly.

Thereafter the Lord, the life force, who is also within us as the five
life-giving physiological functions, is offered the food. This is done
with the chant

praanaaya swaahaa,
apaanaaya swaahaa,
vyaanaaya swaahaa,
udaanaaya swaahaa,
samaanaaya swaahaa,

brahmane swaahaa

After offering the food thus, it is eaten as prasaada – blessed food.

9. Why do we fast?

Most devout Indians fast regularly or on special occasions like
festivals. On such days they do not eat at all, eat once or make do
with fruits or a special diet of simple food.


Fasting in Sanskrit is called upavaasa. Upa means "near" + vaasa means
"to stay". Upavaasa therefore means staying near (the Lord), meaning
the attainment of close mental proximity with the Lord. Then what has
upavaasa to do with food?

A lot of our time and energy is spent in procuring food items,
preparing, cooking, eating and digesting food. Certain food types make
our minds dull and agitated. Hence on certain days man decides to save
time and conserve his energy by eating either simple, light food or
totally abstaining from eating so that his mind becomes alert and
pure. The mind, otherwise pre-occupied by the thought of food, now
entertains noble thoughts and stays with the Lord. Since it is a
self-imposed form of discipline it is usually adhered to with joy.


Also every system needs a break and an overhaul to work at its best.
Rest and a change of diet during fasting is very good for the
digestive system and the entire body.


The more you indulge the senses, the more they make their demands.
Fasting helps us to cultivate control over our senses, sublimate our
desires and guide our minds to be poised and at peace..

Fasting should not make us weak, irritable or create an urge to
indulge later. This happens when there is no noble goal behind
fasting.

The Bhagavad-Gita urges us to eat appropriately – neither too less nor
too much – yukta-aahaara and to eat simple, pure and healthy food (a
saatvik diet) even when not fasting.


10. Why do we do pradakshina (circumambulate) ?

We cannot draw a circle without a center point. The Lord is the
center, source and essence of our lives. Recognizing Him as the focal
point in our lives, we go about doing our daily chores. This is the
significance of pradakshina.

Also every point on the circumference of a circle is equidistant from
the center. This means that wherever or whoever we may be, we are
equally close to the Lord. His grace flows towards us without
partiality.

11. Why is pradakshina done only in a clockwise manner?

The reason is not, as a person said, to avoid a traffic jam! As we do
pradakshina, the Lord is always on our right. In India the right side
symbolizes auspiciousness. So as we circumambulate the sanctum
sanctorum we remind ourselves to lead an auspicious life of
righteousness, with the Lord who is the indispensable source of help
and strength, as our guide – the "right hand".


Indian scriptures enjoin – matrudevo bhava, pitrudevo bhava,
acharyadevo bhava. May you consider your parents and teachers as you
would the Lord. With this in mind we also do pradakshina around our
parents and divine personages.

After the completion of traditional worship (pooja), we customarily do
pradakshina around ourselves. In this way we recognize and remember
the supreme divinity within us, which alone is idolized in the form of
the Lord that we worship outside.


12. Why do we regard trees and plants as sacred?

The Lord, the life in us, pervades all living beings, be they plants
or animals. Hence, they are all regarded as sacred. Human life on
earth depends on plants and trees. They give us the vital factors that
make life possible on earth: food, oxygen, clothing, shelter,
medicines etc.

Hence, in India, we are taught to regard trees and plants as sacred.
Indians scriptures tell us to plant ten trees if, for any reason, we
have to cut one. We are advised to use parts of trees and plants only
as much as is needed for food, fuel, shelter etc. we are also urged to
apologies to a plant or tree before cutting it to avoid incurring a
specific sin named soona


Certain trees and plants like tulasi, peepal etc., which have
tremendous beneficial qualities, are worshipped till today. It is
believed that divine beings manifest as trees and plants, and many
people worship them to fulfill their desires or to please the Lord.

sac-r-ten
05-24-2012, 12:04 PM
12. Why do we ring the bell in a temple?


Is it to wake up the Lord? But the Lord never sleeps. Is it to let the
Lord know we have come? He does not need to be told, as He is all
knowing. Is it a form of seeking permission to enter His precinct? It
is a homecoming and therefore entry needs no permission. The Lord
welcomes us at all times. Then why do we ring the bell?

The ringing of the bell produces what is regarded as an auspicious
sound. It produces the sound Om, the universal name of the Lord. There
should be auspiciousness within and without, to gain the vision of the
Lord who is all-auspiciousness.


Even while doing the ritualistic aarati, we ring the bell. It is
sometimes accompanied by the auspicious sounds of the conch and other
musical instruments. An added significance of ringing the bell, conch
and other instruments is that they help drowned any inauspicious or
irrelevant noises and comments that might disturb or distract the
worshippers in their devotional ardour, concentration and inner peace.

As we start the daily ritualistic worship (pooja) we ring the bell, chanting:

Aagamaarthamtu devaanaam
gamanaarthamtu rakshasaam
Kurve ghantaaravam tatra
devataahvaahna lakshanam


I ring this bell indicating
the invocation of divinity,
So that virtuous and noble forces
enter (my home and heart);
and the demonic and evil forces
from within and without, depart.



13. Why do we worship the kalasha ?

First of all what is a kalasha? A brass, mud or copper pot is filled
with water. Mango leaves are placed in the mouth of the pot and a
coconut is placed over it. A red or white thread is tied around its
neck or sometimes all around it in a intricate diamond-shaped pattern.
The pot may be decorated wit designs. Such a pot is known as a
kalasha.


When the pot is filled with water or rice, it is known as purnakumbha
representing the inert body which when filled with the divine life
force gains the power to do all the wonderful things that makes life
what it is.


A kalasha is placed with due rituals on all-important occasions like
the traditional house warming ( grihapravesa), wedding, daily worship
etc. It is placed near the entrance as a sign of welcome. It is also
used in a traditional manner while receiving holy personages. Why do
we worship the kalasha ? Before the creation came into being, Lord
Vishnu was reclining on His snake-bed in the milky ocean. From His
navel emerged a lotus from which appeared Lord Brahma, the creator,
who thereafter created this world.


The water in the kalasha symbolizes the primordial water from which
the entire creation emerged. It is the giver of life to all and has
the potential of creating innumerable names and forms, the inert
objects and the sentient beings and all that is auspicious in the
world from the energy behind the universe. The leaves and coconut
represent creation.


The thread represents the love that "binds" all in creation. The
kalasha is therefore considered auspicious and worshipped. The waters
from all the holy rivers, the knowledge of all the Vedas and the
blessings of all the deities are invoked in the kalasha and its water
is thereafter used for all the rituals, including the abhisheka.


The consecration (kumbhaabhisheka) of a temple is done in a grand
manner with elaborate rituals including the pouring of one or more
kalashas of holy water on the top of the temple. When the asuras and
devas churned the milky ocean, the Lord appeared bearing the pot of
nectar, which blessed one with everlasting life.


Thus the kalasha also symbolizes immortality. Men of wisdom are full
and complete as they identify with the infinite Truth ( poornatvam).
They brim with joy and love and respect all that is auspicious. We
greet them with a purnakumbha ("full pot") acknowledging their
greatness and as a sign of respectful and reverential welcome, with a
"full heart".


14. Why do we consider the lotus as special?


The lotus is the symbol of truth, auspiciousness and beauty (satyam,
shivam, sundaram). The Lord is also that nature and therefore, His
various aspects are compared to a lotus ( i.e. lotus-eyes, lotus feet,
lotus hands, the lotus of the heart etc.).


The lotus blooms with the rising sun and close at night. Similarly,
our minds open up and expand with the light of knowledge. The lotus
grows even in slushy areas. It remains beautiful and untainted despite
its surroundings, reminding us that we too can and should strive to
remain pure and beautiful within, under all circumstances.


The lotus leaf never gets wet even though it is always in water. It
symbolizes the man of wisdom (gyaani ) who remains ever joyous,
unaffected by the world of sorrow and change. This is revealed in a
shloka from the Bhagwad-Geeta:

Brahmanyaadhaaya karmaani
Sangam tyaktvaa karoti yaha
Lipyate na sa paapena
Padma patram ivaambhasaa


He who does actions, offering them to Brahman (the Supreme),
abandoning attachment, is not tainted by sin, just as a lotus leaf
remains unaffected by the water on it.

From this, we learn that what is natural to the man of wisdom becomes
a discipline to be practiced by all saadhakas or spiritual seekers and
devotees. Our bodies have certain energy centers described in the Yoga
Shaastras as chakras.

Each one is associated with lotus that has a certain number of petals.
For example, a lotus with a thousand petals represents the Sahasra
chakra at the top of the head, which opens when the yogi attains
Godhood or Realisation. Also, the lotus posture ( padmaasana) is
recommended when one sits for meditation. A lotus emerged from the
navel of Lord Vishnu. Lord Brahma originated from it to create the
world. Hence, the lotus symbolizes the link between the creator and
the supreme Cause.

It also symbolizes Brahmaloka, the abode of Lord Brahma. The
auspicious sign of the swastika is said to have evolved from the
lotus.

Continued...

sac-r-ten
05-24-2012, 12:06 PM
15. Why do we worship tulasi?

In Sanskrit, tulanaa naasti athaiva tulasi - that which is
incomparable (in its qualities) is the tulasi .

For Indians it is one of the most sacred plants. In fact it is known
to be the only thing used in worship, which, once used, can be washed
and reused in pooja - as it is regarded so self-purifying.

As one story goes, Tulasi was the devoted wife of Shankhachuda, a
celestial being. She believed that Lord Krishna tricked her into
sinning. So she cursed Him to become a stone ( shaaligraama). Seeing
her devotion and adhered to righteousness, the Lord blessed her saying
that she would become the worshipped plant, tulasi that would adorn
His head.


Also that all offerings would be incomplete without the tulasi leaf -
hence the worship of tulasi.

She also symbolises Goddess Lakshmi, the consort of Lord Vishnu. Those
who wish to be righteous and have a happy family life worship the
tulasi.

Tulasi is married to the Lord with all pomp and show as in any wedding.

This is because according to another legend, the Lord blessed her to
be His consort. Satyabhama once weighed Lord Krishna against all her
legendary wealth. The scales did not balance till a single tulasi leaf
was placed along with the wealth on the scale by Rukmini with
devotion.


Thus the tulasi played the vital role of demonstrating to the world
that even a small object offered with devotion means more to the Lord
than all the wealth in the world.

The tulasi leaf has great medicinal value and is used to cure various
ailments, including the common cold.

Yanmule sarvatirhaani
Yannagre sarvadevataa
Yanmadhye sarvavedaascha
Tulasi taam namaamyaham

I bow down to the tulasi, At whose base are all the holy places, At
whose top reside all the deities and In whose middle are all the
Vedas.


16. Why do we blow the conch?

When the conch is blown, the primordial sound of Om emanates. Om is an
auspicious sound that was chanted by the Lord before creating the
world. It represents the world and the Truth behind it.

As the story goes, the demon Shankhaasura defeated devas, the Vedas
and went to the bottom of the ocean. The devas appealed to Lord Vishnu
for help. He incarnated as Matsya Avataara - the "fish incarnation"
and killed Shankhaasura. The Lord blew the conch-shaped bone of his
ear and head. The Om sound emanated, from which emerged the Vedas.

All knowledge enshrined in the Vedas is an elaboration of Om . The
conch therefore is known as shankha after Shankaasua. The conch blown
by the Lord is called Paanchajanya. He carries it at all times in one
of His four hands.

It represents dharma or righteousness that is one of the four goals
(purushaarthas) of life. The sound of the conch is thus also the
victory call of good over evil.

Another well-known purpose of blowing the conch and the instruments,
known traditionally to produce auspicious sounds is to drown or mask
negative comments or noises that may disturb or upset the atmosphere
or the minds of worshippers.

Ancient India lived in her villages. Each village was presided over by
a primary temple and several small ones. During the aarati performed
after all-important poojas and on sacred occasions, the conch used to
be blown. Since villages were generally small, the sound of the conch
would be heard all over the village. People who could not make it to
the temple were reminded to stop whatever they were doing, at least
for a few seconds, and mentally bow to the Lord. The conch sound
served to briefly elevate people's minds to a prayerful attitude even
in the middle of their busy daily routine.


The conch is placed at the altar in temples and homes next to the Lord
as a symbol of Naada Brahma (Truth), the Vedas, Om, dharma, victory
and auspiciousness. It is often used to offer devotees thirtha
(sanctified water) to raise their minds to the highest Truth. It is
worshipped with the following verse.

Twam puraa saagarot pannaha
Vishnunaa vidhrutahakare
Devaischa poojitha sarvahi
Panchjanya namostu te


Salutations to Panchajanya
the conch born of the ocean
Held in the hand of Lord Vishnu
and worshipped by all devaas

17. Why do we say shaanti thrice?

Shaanti, meaning "peace", is a natural state of being. Disturbances
are created either by others or us. For example, peace already exists
in a place until someone makes noise.

Therefore, peace underlies all our agitations. When agitations end,
peace is naturally experienced since it was already there. Where there
is peace, there is happiness. Therefore, every one without exception
desires peace in his/her life.

However, peace within or without seems very hard to attain because it
is covered by our own agitations. A rare few manage to remain peaceful
within even in the midst of external agitation and troubles. To invoke
peace, we chant prayers. By chanting prayers, troubles end and peace
is experienced internally, irrespective of the external disturbances.
All such prayers end by chanting shaanti thrice.

It is believed that trivaram satyam - that which is said thrice comes
true. For emphasizing a point we repeat a thing thrice. In the court
of law also, one who takes the witness stands says, "I shall speak the
truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth".

We chant shaanti thrice to emphasise our intense desire for peace. All
obstacles, problems and sorrows originate from three sources.

Aadhidaivika : The unseen divine forces over which we have little or
no control like earthquakes, floods, volcanic eruptions etc.

Aadhibhautika: The known factors around us like accidents, human
contacts, pollution, crime etc.

Aadhyaatmika : We sincerely pray to the Lord that at least while we
undertake special tasks or even in our daily lives, there are no
problems or that, problems are minimised from the three sources
written about above.

May peace alone prevail. Hence shaanti is chanted thrice.

It is chanted aloud the first time, addressing the unseen forces. It
is chanted softer the second time, directed to our immediate
surroundings and those around, and softest the last time as it is
addressed to oneself.

18. Why do we offer a coconut?

In India one of the most common offerings in a temple is a coconut. It
is also offered on occasions like weddings, festivals, the use of a
new vehicle, bridge, house etc. It is offered in the sacrificial fire
whilst performing homa. The coconut is broken and placed before the
Lord. It is later distributed as prasaada.

The fibre covering of the dried coconut is removed except for a tuft
on the top. The marks on the coconut make it look like the head of a
human being. The coconut is broken, symbolising the breaking of the
ego. The juice within, representing the inner tendencies ( vaasanas)
is offered along with the white kernel - the mind, to the Lord.

A mind thus purified by the touch of the Lord is used as prasaada ( a
holy gift). In the traditional abhishekha ritual done in all temples
and many homes, several materials are poured over the deity like milk,
curd, honey, tender coconut water, sandal paste, holy ash etc. Each
material has a specific significance of bestowing certain benefits on
worshippers. Tender coconut water is used in abhisheka rituals since
it is believed to bestow spiritual growth on the seeker.

The coconut also symbolises selfless service. Every part of the tree
-the trunk, leaves, fruit, coir etc. Is used in innumerable ways like
thatches, mats, tasty dishes, oil, soap etc. It takes in even salty
water from the earth and converts it into sweet nutritive water that
is especially beneficial to sick people. It is used in the preparation
of many ayurvedic medicines and in other alternative medicinal
systems.

The marks on the coconut are even thought to represent the three-eyed
Lord Shiva and therefore it is considered to be a means to fulfill our
desires.

Continued..

sac-r-ten
05-24-2012, 12:08 PM
19. Why do we chant Om?

Om is one of the most chanted sound symbols in India. It has a
profound effect on the body and mind of the one who chants and also on
the surroundings. Most mantras and vedic prayers start with Om.

All auspicious actions begin with Om. It is even used as a greeting -
Om, Hari Om etc. It is repeated as a mantra or meditated upon. Its
form is worshipped, contemplated upon or used as an auspicious sign.

Om is the universal name of the Lord. It is made up of the letters A
(phonetically as in "around"), U (phonetically as in "put") and M
(phonetically as in "mum"). The sound emerging from the vocal chords
starts from the base of the throat as "A". With the coming together of
the lips, "U" is formed and when the lips are closed, all sounds end
in "M".

The three letters symbolize the three states (waking, dream and deep
sleep), the three deities (Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva), the three Vedas
(Rig, Yajur and Sama) the three worlds (Bhuh, Bhuvah, Suvah) etc. The
Lord is all these and beyond.

The formless, attributeless Lord (Brahman) is represented by the
silence between two Om Chants. Om is also called pranava that means,
"that (symbol or sound) by which the Lord is praised". The entire
essence of the Vedas is enshrined in the word Om. It is said that the
Lord started creating the world after chanting Om and atha. Hence its
sound is considered to create an auspicious beginning for any task
that we undertake. The Om chant should have the resounding sound of a
bell (aaooommm).

Om is written in different ways in different places. The most common
form symbolizes Lord Ganesha's. The upper curve is the head; the lower
large one, the stomach; the side one, the trunk; and the semi-circular
mark with the dot, the sweetmeat ball (modaka) in Lord Ganesha's hand.
Thus Om symbolizes everything - the means and the goal of life, the
world and the Truth behind it, the material and the Sacred, all form
and the Formless.


20. Why do we do aarati ?

Towards the end of every ritualistic worship (pooja or bhajan) of the
Lord or to welcome an honored guest or saint, we perform the aarati.
This is always accompanied by the ringing of the bell and sometimes by
singing, playing of musical instruments and clapping.

It is one of the sixteen steps (shodasha upachaara) of the pooja
ritual. It is referred to as the lighted lamp in the right hand, which
we wave in a clockwise circling movement to light the entire form of
the Lord.

Each part is revealed individually and also the entire form of the
Lord. As the light is waved we either do mental or loud chanting of
prayers or simply behold the beautiful form of the Lord, illumined by
the lamp. At the end of the aarati we place our hands over the flame
and then gently touch our eyes and the top of the head.

We have seen and participated in this ritual from our childhood. Let
us find out why we do the aarati?

Having worshipped the Lord of love - performing abhisheka, decorating
the image and offering fruits and delicacies, we see the beauty of the
Lord in all His glory. Our minds are focused on each limb of the Lord
as the lamp lights it up. It is akin to silent open-eyed meditation on
His beauty. The singing, clapping, ringing of the bell etc. denote the
joy and auspiciousness, which accompanies the vision of the Lord.

Aarati is often performed with camphor. This holds a telling spiritual
significance. Camphor when lit, burns itself out completely without
leaving a trace of it. It represents our inherent tendencies (
vaasanas). When lit by the fire of knowledge which illumines the Lord
(Truth), our vaasanas thereafter burn themselves out completely, not
leaving a trace of ego which creates in us a sense of individuality
that keeps us separate from the Lord.

Also while camphor burns to reveal the glory of Lord, it emits a
pleasant perfume even while it sacrifices itself. In our spiritual
progress, even as we serve the guru and society, we should willingly
sacrifice ourselves and all we have, to spread the "perfume" of love
to all. We often wait a long while to see the illumined Lord but when
the aarati is actually performed, our eyes close automatically as if
to look within. This is to signify that each of us is a temple of the
Lord.

Just as the priest reveals the form of the Lord clearly with the
aarati flame, so too the guru reveals to us the divinity within each
of us with the help of the "flame" of knowledge (or the light of
spiritual knowledge). At the end of the aarati, we place our hands
over the flame and then touch our eyes and the top of the head. It
means - may the light that illuminated the Lord light up my vision;
may my vision be divine and my thoughts noble and beautiful.

The philosophical meaning of aarati extends further. The sun, moon,
stars, lightning and fire are the natural sources of light. The Lord
is the source of this wonderous phenomenon of the universe. It is due
to Him alone that all else exist and shine. As we light up the Lord
with the flame of the aarati, we turn our attention to the very source
of all light, which symbolizes knowledge and life.

Also the sun is the presiding deity of the intellect, the moon, that
of the mind, and fire, that of speech. The Lord is the supreme
consciousness that illuminates all of them. Without Him, the intellect
cannot think, nor can the mind feel nor the tongue speaks. The Lord is
beyond the mind, intellect and speech. How can this finite equipment
illuminate the Lord? Therefore, as we perform the aarati we chant;

Na tatra suryo bhaati na chandra taarakam
Nemaa vidyuto bhaanti kutoyamagnib
Tameva bhaantam anubhaati sarvam
Tasya bhasa sarvam idam vibhaati

He is there where the sun does not shine,
Nor the moon, stars and lightning.
then what to talk of this small flame (in my hand),
Everything (in the universe) shines only after the Lord,

And by His light alone are we all illumined.
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Let there be peace and love everywhere.......Amen.

pardesibabu
05-24-2012, 12:11 PM
Mother: what's the meaning of "Tamso ma jyotirgamaya"

Son: it means "Tum so jao ma, main jyoti ke ghar ka raha Hun"

gk_2000
05-24-2012, 02:39 PM
@ sac-r-ten

You might as well publish your book and paste your url link here... :-(