Indian Culture is Great
Culture refers to the patterns and the ways by which the people live their lives in a society and a country. A culture is a commixture of fashions, trends, behaviours, conduct and practices that people tend to follow and represent. In the context of Indian culture, all we can say that it is one of the oldest established cultures which possesses a great heritage of values and traditions. Indian culture is versatile and it has always given a new vision and new dimensions to the world to look towards India. This culture has made India; one of the unique and diversified country among the other countries of the world. The peerless features of Indian culture make it outstanding among various cultures around the world.
India as a country possesses so many diversities; different states have their own varied customs, religions, languages, fashions, festivals, arts, trends, traditions, customs, cuisines, clothing and other specialities and yet they all together continue to make their existence under a one roof, one country; The Great India! These religious, linguistic and physical diversities make India, a marvelous country. Indian culture is the witness of the days of the old Indus Valley civilization till the days of Modern India. The modern India represents the unity in diversity. For ages, this culture had acknowledged changes, evolution, transitions and modifications, in its major areas but with every passage it has been developed and enriched. The Great values and virtues have beautified the culture of our country which have also made it enough strong to survive among the temporary winds of westernization.
The wonderful facts about the culture of India is that it has bestowed separate identities to the people who display their different set of traditions, practices and ideologies but it has brought all those together in such a way that they present a great example of oneness among the differences. It has created strong bonds among the people of the country. Modern India represents the happiness and gladness of enjoying each and every festival with diversified people and places. It has cultivated such an amazing system in which different philosophies and ideologies are accommodating with each other absolutely. It has widely influenced the social lives of the people making them more lively and enhanced.
In this article I am likely to draw the attention of everyone towards the greatness of the Indian culture; how this culture makes itself unique from the others and what are the elements which make it profound across the world. Indian culture has been described as the first and the supreme culture in the world it is also being renowned globally as the divine culture. There are certain foundation elements of this culture which make it so prolific and eminent. Indian religions, values, arts, literature, languages, festivals and cuisines are among the elements which have made the Indian culture so popular across the world. People from around the world seem to be so much interested and attracted towards these elements because they give the knowledge about the culture of great India.
So let us consider what features of Indian Culture make it great , so popular, unique and diversified among other cultures across the world:
INDIAN CULTURE AND RELIGION
India is a great country that has given rise to the now more widely spread Religions. Religion plays a vital role for the people by leading their lives with discipline and this makes the Indian culture rich and diversified. Basically India is the origin place of many religions like Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism, Sikhism, Islam, Christianity, Zoroastrianism and Judaism. In fact Hinduism and Buddhism are the third and fourth largest religions respectively across the world. Buddhism, Sikhism and Jainism are among the most influential and famous religions around the world. Around 80% of the Indian population follow Hinduism, 13% people follow Islam, Christianity composed of 23 million people, approximate 19 million of the people follow Sikhism and 4 million of the population belong to Buddhists and Jains. Be it Hinduism, Sikhism, Jainism or any other, every religion advocates discipline and values in life. Every religion preaches self realization and encourages oneself to seek for liberation. Religion in our country is the basic aspect of life and it is a way of living. Each faith, ideas, thoughts and philosophy of religions are greeted with the big hearts of people. Only the flexible and broad approach of the Indian culture makes the acceptance of so many religions, possible. It shows a wide perspective and vision and represents a great attitude towards all the religions. The basic idea behind being so flexible and open for all the religions lies in the attitude of giving regard to the specialities of different religions. Indian culture has always focused upon the basic purposes of these religions.
INDIAN CULTURE AND VALUES
Culture of India is not only famous for its linguistic or religious diversities but also for preaching wonderful and proficient philosophies and values. For a long time it has instilled great values in the mankind. Indian culture is in fact the best example of a divine value system that has been engaged in the welfare of the people. It has not only acknowledged the mankind with values but has also taught to use them in their lives to contribute towards their own and the welfare of others. The history of this culture is flooded with the instances of great thinkers, saints, philosophers and great men who are still remembered for showing divine and supreme values in their thoughts and actions. Humanity, tolerance, bravery, patience, respect, happiness are such great values that have been represented during many phases of Indian history. Each element of our culture may it be religion, literature, festivals and arts preach; values. Families, companionships, bonding and connections among Indians, depict values of brotherhood, love, care, compassion and affection. Children right from their early stage being taught to follow values. Elders truly believe in bringing up the children by putting moral and social values in them. Education in Indian culture is also value based; it recommends the adoption of values in one’s life. Realizing the significance of values and hence creating an atmosphere where values can flourish and grow; is a feature that makes Indian culture different from other cultures.
CULTURE AND SOCIAL INSTITUTIONS:
family and marriage are two major social institutions of the Indian society. They help and contribute towards the growth and maintenance of the society. Functioning of these two institutions determines the development of the society, and these both play a vital role for the same. Marriage and family work under a proper framework. The system and the regulation being followed under these institutions, make them unique from the institutions of other countries. In Indian culture marriage is not just a connection of two bodies (male and female) that are given the liberty to have sex and contribute in the reproductive cycle of the society, but a marriage is supposed to be a sacred knot of two souls. In an Indian marriage a female is truly supposed to be a half shareholder of her man’s wealth, happiness, sorrows, achievements, failures and whole life. She is supposed to be the inspiration of a man and an entire care taker whereas the male is supposed to be the supreme protector of his lady. He is supposed to take care, help, motivate, protect and love his wife to the fullest. Rituals and prayers play an important role in Indian marriages, our culture see the marriage as a divine connection of two people hence it is preferred to carry out the rituals as an offering to the deities and god. In our culture the rituals of marriage have deep significance. Family is supposed to be a cornerstone of the society. In our culture a family is not just a group of few members but it is a connection of affection and care between each of them. Family plays a significant role in Indian culture because it is supposed to be responsible for the growth of each member. Elders and youngsters have their specific roles and responsibilities. Their relationships are carried forward with the values of respect, discipline and affection. The patriarchal system of family helps the elders to keep the discipline in their families. Children are taught to be obedient and respectful. Mothers have their big roles to play towards the whole family and the children. The whole family’s system runs according to a right conduct. The joint family system helps the members to cooperate with each other; this system helps a lot in maintaining a harmony among the family members. Every member of the family is cooperating, helping and contributing to the life of other family members.
CELEBRATES LIFE BY THE MEANS OF FESTIVALS
one of the beautiful aspects of Indian culture is that it teaches the human race to turn their lives into celebration. It teaches the people to live every moment and to make the best out of it. And when this feeling is a little extended with the gesture of love, harmony and happiness it takes a form of a festival. The Indian culture is rich with many festivals and each festival is unique in its own way. It is only in India where every year there are so many festivals being celebrated. Festivals in Indian culture are featured with enthusiasm, colors, celebrations, rituals and prayers. Each festival has a reason and a message/lesson associated with it which is shared among the people by the way of celebration. Holi, Dusshera, Deepawali, Shivratri, Hanuman Jayati, Janmashtami, Pongal, Makar-Sakrant, Durga Puja, Karwa-Chaut, Raksha-Bandhan, Lohri, Gurunanak Jayanti Christmas, Eid are among those festivals which are celebrated with utmost joy and enthusiasm. Each festival has a unique way to be celebrated and with each of it, the values of love, affection, harmony, cooperation and respect; increases. The beauty of these festivals lies in their common factor which is to raise the feelings of oneness and compassion among the people of the country. Indian culture has such a broad vision that encourages everyone to celebrate and to love the festivals of every other religion and culture. Hence it is only in India that a Hindu celebrates Christmas and Eid and a Muslim shares wishes with Hindus on Deepawali.
INDIAN CULTURE AND CUISINES
food in Indian culture is treated like an offering to god, ‘Prasad’, ‘bhojan’, ‘bhog’ are a few terms used to refer to the food in India. People in our country give so much of respect for food and treat it not less than any holy thing. Indian cuisines show so much of varieties and variations which have been attracting and fascinating the people around the world. Indian food serves a variety of herbs, spices, vegetables and fruits which vary in different states, places and regions of India. The ancient Indian society advocates vegetarianism in its food culture. The spices and herbs used in Indian cuisines have a nutritional value that also has medicinal benefits. Be it North, West, East and South India, each part represent a variety of cuisines and spices. In North India Kashmir, Punjab, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh possess a wide range of vegetables, spices and flours. In Kashmir most of the cuisines are prepared of rice and spices and herbs are rich in variety and colors. Different kinds of breads or ‘Roti’ are very famous in the states like Punjab, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh. With different flours used for the preparation of these rotis, come up a variety of breads such as, tandoori roti, Missi roti, naan, laccha paratha. ‘Saag’ is the most famous cuisine in the north India that is prepared with the green leafy vegetables.
In the West India, states like Gujarat, Rajasthan, Maharastra along with Mumbai show a different flavor of cuinsines. Gujarat and Rajasthan show the dessert flavor of food, cuisines usually has little sweet and salty flavors that is also accompanied with pickles and ‘chutneys made up of tamarinds and curd. Mumbai shows the variety of seafood, there is high usage of fishes, prawns and Pomfret in cuisines. Rice is highly preferred over here and in Maharastra. Goa also reflects the Portuguese influence in the cooking of food. Some of the famous dishes are Vindalo, sorpotel, duck baffed, Edd mole etc. In East India, Assame and Bengali cooking styles are unique. Rice and fish are two major ingredients in their food. In fact, Assames and Bengalis love eating varieties of fishes. A very famous dish of fish in Bengal is ‘Hilsa’ which is made by wrapping the fish in pumpkin leaf and then cooking it. Bengal is also famous for introducing superb flavors in sweet and desserts like ‘Roshogulla’ , Sondesh’ and ‘Cham-Cham’. The South India represents the high usage of herbs, spices, coconuts and fishes in the cuisines. Rice and coconut are the main ingredients, dishes are less spicy yet show a range of spices. Tamarind is highly used in Tamilnadu to give sourness to the food. Andhra Pradesh is famous for using excessive chilles in the cuisines and Kerela is particularly famous for its delicious cuisines like Malabar fried prawns, Idllis, Dosa, land stew, appam, fish meal and puttu which is coagulated rice powder steamed like a pudding in a bamboo shoot.
INDIAN CULTURE AND CLOTHINGS
Indian culture shows a varied range of clothing that varies depending upon various regions, places, traditions, climate, geographical factors and ethnicity. Indian culture also shows a huge variety of fibers, colors, fabrics and styles. Cotton and silk fabric have been the most favorite textiles among Indians. Especially the South India is famous for its wide variety of silks. People in the north, east and west part of India prefer to wear cotton made clothes besides their traditional and customized dresses. Dresses for woman in Indian culture have a deep significance attached; a woman is supposed to look graceful and dignified hence in our culture she should wear such clothes which make her look beautiful and less exposed. Sari and Salwaar Kameez with dupatta (in North India), Ghagra Choli, Pattu Pavadai (traditional dress of south India and Rajasthan) Mundum Neriyathum (a traditional sari women wear in Kerela), Mekhla Sador (made up of three big pieces of cloth draped around the body, worn by women of Assam). These all above dresses are worn by the women of different states and regions on a daily basis, and few special occasions and festivals. Men’s clothing is also varied in Indian culture. Whereas Indian women’s attire is heavy, decorated and expensive, Indian men’s attire is very simple and less decorative. A turban, ‘pagdi’ is supposed to be a symbol of pride and honour for a man that is why since the ancient civilization turban makes an important part of the men’s clothing. Traditional Dhoti, Lungi, Kurta-Payjama, Dastar (pagdi worn by Sikhs), Pheta (turban worn by men in Maharastra) Mysore Peta, Rajasthani Pagdi are all traditional attire which are specially worn on festivals, ceremonies and occasions like marriages. Marriage is also an affair where Indian people believe to wear expensive and fancy clothes. The dress of the bride and groom cost so much expensive, they are decorated and filmed.
INDIAN CULTURE AND LANGUAGES
Sanskrit is one of the oldest languages of India and discovered by the Indo European explorers. There is a huge language evolution being observed from generation to generation in India. Indian culture has witnessed the evolution of language over three periods; old, middle and modern Indo-Aryan. Samskrta is the classical form of old Indo-Aryan, Prakrta was the middle into-Aryan language, Pali belonged to early Buddhists and Ashoka era from 200-300BC and finally Apabhramsa that further flourished in Hindi, Gujarati, Bengali, Marathi, Punjabi and many other languages spoken and written in the north, east and west parts of India. Sanskrit has always had a deep impact on the languages of our country. All the languages have similar roots and structure like Sanskrit. In the modern India, Hindi and English are the two most spoken languages, besides which every state of India uses its own dialect and way of communication. Tamil, Kannada and Malayalam are the literary forms of Dravidian Languages. Bengali dialect had aroused from middle Indic languages. Today in modern time the language has observed many modifications. But still each state and region of the country represent the historical significance of their dialects. Hindi is a national language but the greatness of Indian culture depicts in its acceptance of all the languages originated from it. It has encouraged its human race to learn and respect all the dialects. People from abroad get so much fascinated by this great feature our culture they find it so interesting that people of India has a huge heritage of language and literature and they maintain the dignity of each of them.
INDIAN INDIAN CULTURE AND ARCHITECTURE
India is a land of Arts. Across the world it has made its remarkable and unparalleled position. The great Indian civilization is a witness of the magnificent examples of Indian arts, crafts, architecture, and dances. There is no second Taj Mahal, Kutubh Minar in the other parts of the world. Indian art represents superb skills of painting and handcrafts. There are numerous of clans, tribes and villages where one can see the unique skills of people in crafts and art. Every state, region and place in India has something different to present and create. Indian civilization has an enriched architectural history that no other country shows. Indus Valley sites of Harappa, Mohenjo-daro depicts the best examples of architectures and town planning’s. The beginning of Indian architecture can be more properly dated with the advent of Buddhism in India. Buddhist monasteries and stupas (the Great Sanchi Stupa and the rock-cut at Ajanta) can stand out while referring to the Indian architecture. Khajuraho and Hampi and few Hindu temples also represent the beauty of our architecture.
INDIAN CULTUE AND DANCES
Dance in Indian culture is treated like a prayer to the God. Indian culture is so beautiful that it takes dance as living a life. It is the only culture that shows one’s devotion, love and dedication to the lord of the dance (Natraja). It has introduced numerous of classical dance forms which are not only vivid but vivacious and graceful. Each dance form depicts a deep meaning, conveys a message may it be through the dance form of Kathak, Bahratnatyam, Khuchpudi, Odissi and others. Indian classical dancers have made their prestigious position in the world of arts and culture. Besides the classical dance forms India is also famous for its various folk, traditional, tribal and regional dance forms. These dances are a ways for the common people to show their gestures of joy and happiness. Both men and women participate in such dances and enjoy each movement of the dance. Such dances are also supposed to raise harmony and happiness among each tier. Each state of our country represents a unique dance form. Especially the tribes of India represent entirely unique dance forms. Some of the famous folk dance forms of Indian states are; Garba, Gagari, Ghodakhund in Gujarat, Kalbelia, Ghoomar, Rasiya in Rajasthan, Bedara Vesha, Dollu Kunitha in Karnataka, Neyopa, Bacha Nagma in Jammu and Kashmir, Bihu dance in Assam, Bhangra and Giddha in Punjab, Sambalpuri dance in Western Odisha. Dance in Indian culture is treated like an art that should be learned by everyone, in fact many people take formal dance education in classical and contemporary dance forms in India.
INDIAN CULTURE AND ITS MECIAL SYSTEMS
Indian culture presents a variety of its medical systems. Its ancient medical heritage comprised of Muslim practices known as Unani Tibbi, Arabic medicines, Homeopathic system and local and regional practices. Above all of these Ayurveda is a complex medical system that stresses upon the physical, mental and spiritual health of the people. This involves the practice of yoga, a disciplined life routine and rejuvenating measures. Most Indians and the ancient civilization of India believe in the holistic treatment for any kind of illness hence they prefer to use herbal and natural ways to cure the diseases. The ancient Indian civilization gives the proof of using and believing in naturopathy and Ayurveda for curing the illnesses. It has introduced and invented many extinct and rare herbs that can miraculously cure the hazardous diseases. The use of fruits and vegetables for curing bacterial and viral diseases is also a famous trend in the Indian medical system. Turmeric, neem, tulsi, basil, ginger is major herbs that have been used as medicines for a cure. Different herbs and seed oils are also used for the purpose of massage to get relief and relax in body and joint pains. In Indian medical systems; stress, physical ailment and karma are considered to be the root causes of diseases which may be cured by managing the diet routine, implementing meditation and by taking natural medicines. These systems are natural and safe that is why they are so famous and preferable in comparison of the western medical system.
INDIAN CULTURE AND EDUCATION
education has been given much importance and respect in Indian culture. It is said to be the building agent of the character of a person, it enables an individual to learn, think and act wisely. The ancient India witnesses an ideal system of education that considers to build up a strong relationship between a teacher (Guru) and a pupil (shishya). The tradition of Gurukuls was originated in India in which the children of the kings and emperors were sent to the Gurukul to study, learn and become good human beings. In Gurukul pupils were engaged in constructive activities and were specially taught different arts of hunting, horse riding and soliderliness. The ancient education system believed in bestowing the knowledge to the children of all kinds. Be it arts, philosophy, literature, astronomy, architecture, spirituality, logic, mathematics, paintings and grammar, theology and medical sciences. Then the education was not career orientated rather knowledge based and that which aimed at exploring the potential, talents, raising the self control and building up a firm character. The guru was treated next to God infarct above him there is a very famous saying in India, “ guru Gobind duo khade, kaa ke laagu paayen, balihari guru apki Gobind diyo milaye”. It states that guru (teacher) is most respectful because he introduces his pupil to the supreme almighty/knowledge/being.
INDIAN CULTURE AND INDIAN BELIEFS
Indians possess great thinking and ideologies. In fact they are famous for their generosity and knowledge. Concept of Simple living and high thinking perfectly goes with the Indians. India is a land of great philosophers, thinkers and saints who have bestowed highest divine values , philosophies and ideologies to the mankind. Indian culture is based on the foundation of wonderful beliefs which have immensely helped the Indians to survive and to lead. It is only the Indian culture that perceives the eternal beauty of a being rather stressing upon the physical appearance. It is the culture that treats a woman as a Goddess and a guest as a Deity, ‘atithi devo bhav’ the great thought that instill the feeling of hospitality in Indians. The belief of giving gifts to show affection and regard is also a famous trend in Indian culture. Indian culture transcends great thoughts among it mankind.
Indian culture is beautiful, vibrant and unique.
It has a long history attached to it that is full of great experiences and traditions, customs, ideologies and patterns. The people of India should be proud of being born in such an amazing country whose culture is said to be divine and supreme of all other cultures. Indian culture has had introduced great saints and thinkers whose teaching are still the best to lead and to turn the life in positive. It is the only culture that has given the message of “Vasudev Kutumbakam” that conveys that we all are living under the one roof provided by the Almighty. It is the only culture that talks about self realization, spirituality and values in the depth. It is so vast and pronounced that one might be left speechless and with short of words when wants to mention its specialities. In all the spheres may it be religions, social institutions, arts, architecture, festivals, cuisines & clothing, Indian culture shows abundance, broad perspectives and values of regard and respect. This humbleness of our culture makes it stand out among other cultures of the world. I might be unfair if I would not mention the great features of Indian culture in the sphere of economics and politics too. It is our culture that had acknowledged the pioneer of economics and political sciences; the great Chanakya. His teachings were supposed to be the antecedent to the Classical Economics. Democracy was only originated in India. We are living in a country where we are truly liberal and free to choose and act as per our wish but we are also being disciplined by the means of right conduct.
The brightness, joys, bliss, pious feelings are like the gems for the beauty of our culture. Its different cuisines and clothing add more spice and vividness to its significance. It is the only culture that raises the feeling of Sharing among each one of us. We are taught to share and serve the hungry first, we are also taught to behave perservant and content even in the times of crisis.
Indian Culture is not just a set of certain customs, traditions and patterns, it is the Ethos that teaches and offers big reasons to feel proud of India!
Posted by Jyotsna Gandhi
Post a Comment