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Showing posts from August, 2015

VISHU AND MAHABALI: Onam is More or Less Nostalgic?

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Part 2 Propagandists have often proclaimed that Onam has a Hindu connection. The myth involving Vishnu and Mahabali is one instance for this coagulation. There is lighting of traditional lamps, special pujas in temples and so on. That being said, the festival of Onam also resides in contours adjacent to what may be called a religiously neutral space. But the origin of this neutral position has to come from the story of how the term Hindu evolved. That might take a long time and space to narrate.
Taken as the name of a culture, the term Hindu does have a connection with Onam as the term is connected to everything in India or everything that is part of the Indian culture. “Hindusthan” is a name we are called in antiquity across the world. At some point in time, Hindu seems to have acquired the status of a religion though. From that moment in history onward, we had taken this word with extra care. This care went for and against compartmentalization of people as well. The discussion I init…

HAPPY ONAM!

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Part-1 For the past fifteen to twenty years the people of Kerala, in celebrating Onam, have switched from their land and courtyard to their sofas and settees. I am no different.
By ‘land and courtyard’, I mean the way we used to occupy ourselves during this festival. Kinds running around in fields surrounding the household for flowers and spreading floral carpet on the courtyard are a few of those memories. It was great fun in the country than in the city back then. Onam was mostly an occasion for getting together with family and relatives, during my childhood.
Unlike the Wikipedia article on Onam, the celebration does not have much to do with a specific religious practice with the way things are in the above drawn memory picture. Or should I say the way things “were”? Onam has a pan religious appeal. In order to explicate that I would like to tell you what I have seen recently in a church. In a place named Mattannur, about 20 km away from Chalode, my place, we have a Catholic church. …

Bestselling author Anu Lal on 69th Indian Independence Day, Self-reliance, and Courage: FULL ARTICLE

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Part-1 69TH INDIAN INDEPENDENCE DAY: Dependence or Independence Where Do You Stand? That middle class Indian may not have personal means for conveyance. He or she would take a bus or train for daily commutation. Within that context, freedom of movement does have a seriously limiting meaning. In essence, freedom to move is limited and knitted with illusion in the life of a person taking buses for his daily travel. "Independence" may have a political meaning. This word also has a strict personal meaning too. In a philosophical sense, independence is possible only in the form of pure consciousness. Therefore, this state of being is beyond the usual sense of understanding the term. In a political sense, the same sense the term is used with these days, "independence" may me…

69TH INDIAN INDEPENDENCE DAY: Thoughts on Self-Reliance

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NATION AND MEANING: You and I and our Collective Totality

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INDEPENDENCE DAY: What Do We Give Others?

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Part 2


I would say it's a lack of true vision that makes these contemporary critics of this once great nation babble about status quo when a majority of people die of lack of food and violence committed on the streets. Let's face the reality. None of us, including this humble author, is not talking about what really matters. Within the Indian geo-political context the term ‘independence’ has a different significance now than that it previously had, say ten years back. India has changed in ways that would help write a new future for this country. This point in time and space in the story of India, one must look carefully for a more fulfilling meaning for “independence.” 
It is not political independence that matters anymore. Mostly because political independence is as much an illusion as the thought of a distinct national identity. Everyone, instead, must feel something personally connecting with this thought, “independence”. To be independent, as we all realize by now, is not to…