Let us Start
India is the birth place of four of the world’s major religious traditions; namely Hinduism, Jainism, Buddhism and Sikhism. Throughout its history, religion has been an important part of the country’s culture. Religious diversity and religious tolerance are both established in the country by law and custom. A vast majority of Indians associate themselves with a religion.
According to the 2001 census, Hinduism accounted for 80.5% of the population of India. Islam (13.4%), Christianity (2.3%) and Sikhism (1.9%) are the other major religions followed by the people of India. This diversity of religious belief systems existing in India today is a result of, besides existence and birth of native religions, assimilation and social integration of religions brought to the region by traders, travelers, immigrants, and even invaders and conquerors.
Zoroastrianism and Judaism also have an ancient history in India and each has several thousand Indian adherents. India has the largest population of people adhering to Zoroastrianism and Faith anywhere in the world. Many other world religions also have a relationship with Indian spirituality, like the Baha’i faith which recognizes Lord Buddha and Lord Krishna as manifestations of God Almighty.
Indian diaspora in the West have popularized many aspects of Hindu philosophy like yoga (meditation), Ayurvedic medicine, divination, vegetarianism, karma and reincarnation to a great extent.The influence of Indians abroad in spiritual matters has been significant as several organizations such as the Hare Krishna movement, the Brahma Kumaris, the Ananda Marga and others spread by Indian spiritual figures.
The Muslim population in India is the third largest in the world. The shrines of some of the most famous saints of Sufism like Moinuddin Chishti and Nizamuddin Auliya are in India and attract visitors from all over the world. India is also home to some of the most famous monuments of Islamic architecture like the Taj Mahal and the Qutb Minar. Civil matters related to the community are dealt with by the Muslim Personal Law, and constitutional amendments in 1985 established its primacy in family matters.
The Constitution of India declares the nation to be a secular republic that must uphold the right of citizens to freely worship and propagate any religion or faith (with activities subject to reasonable restrictions for the sake of morality, law and order, etc.). The Constitution of India also declares the right to freedom of religion as a fundamental right.
Citizens of India are generally tolerant of each other’s religions and retain a secular outlook, although inter-religious marriage is not widely practiced. Inter-community clashes have found little support in the social mainstream, and it is generally perceived that the causes of religious conflicts are political rather than ideological in nature.
(source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Religion_in_India)India is the birth place of four of the world’s major religious traditions; namely Hinduism, Jainism, Buddhism and Sikhism. Throughout its history, religion has been an important part of the country’s culture. Religious diversity and religious tolerance are both established in the country by law and custom. A vast majority of Indians associate themselves with ...
Thirumoozhikulam Sree Lakshmanaperumal Temple is located in Thirumoozhikalam
in Ernakulam district of Kerala. The temple finds mention in many of the Bhajans
sung by the staunchly Vaishnavite Alwars, particularly Nammalvar of 5000 years back.
Lakshmana is the brother of Lord Rama. He is also one of the close companion of Lord Rama. In Hinduism, Lakshmana is considered as the avathara of ‘Anantha’, the immortal and infinite snake on which Lord Vishnu takes rest. Lakshmana is the son of Dhasaradha’s and sumithra and twin brother of Sathrughna. In spite of of being the twin brother of Sathrughna , Lakshmana was more attached to Lord Rama. Lakshmana married to Urmila, the sister of Sita devi. Lakshmana accompanied with Rama in his entire life. He was so loyal, lovable and committed to his brother. When Rama was exiled from the country for 14 years, Lakshmana also gave up all his happiness and accompanied his brother’s foot steps. During the way also Lakshmana served Lord Rama and Sita Devi reverently. He took care of them properly during those days.
Lakshmana Rekha’ is very famous. It is his specialty. Intruders cant enter into the ‘Lakshmana Rekha’ or Lakshmana’s limit. If anyone crosses then they will be instantly killed. Also Lakshmana is known as a very powerful warrior. His courage and power are near to that of Lord Rama. Lakshmana is a perfect example for a man whose life represents the duties of a man to his elders. Selfishness could not be seen in any part of his life.
(Source : http://www.thekeralatemples.com/temple_index_lakshmana.htm)Thirumoozhikulam Sree Lakshmanaperumal Temple is located in Thirumoozhikalam in Ernakulam district of Kerala. The temple finds mention in many of the Bhajans sung by the staunchly Vaishnavite Alwars, particularly Nammalvar of 5000 years back. Lakshmana is the brother of Lord Rama. He is also one of the close companion of Lord Rama. In Hinduism, Lakshmana is ...
Basant Panchami has a specific meaning, Basant means Spring, whereas Panchami means the fifth day of the spring. It falls on Panchami – on the Waxing Moon. The festival lies in the month of January-February.
The young girls dressed in the diverse shades of yellow magnify the splendor of nature. Kite flying, a popular sport in India, is associated with the Basant Panchami day. It is a day for young crowd – no routine work, no studies, only merry making.
¤ The Celebrations
The festival is celebrated with full vivacity and festivity to mark the end of the winters. It is one of the first festivals of the Year and is celebrated all over India. The yellow color has great significance, people wear yellow clothes, offer yellow flowers in worship and put a yellow, turmeric tilak on their forehead. They visit temples and offer prayers to various gods. At home, kesar halva, also yellow in color, is prepared. The yellow flowers of mustard crop covers the entire field in such a way that it seems as if gold is spread over the land glittering with the rays of the sun.
¤ Worship Goddess-Sarasvati
The day of Basant Panchami is dedicated to Goddess Sarasvati. Sarasvati is the goddess of learning who bequeaths the greatest wealth to humanity, the wealth of knowledge. Hindu mythology depicts Sarasvati as a pristine lady bedecked with white attire, white flowers and white pearls, sitting on a white lotus, which blooms in a wide stretch of water. The Goddess also holds Veena, a string-instrument, like Sitar, for playing music. The prayer of Sarasvati finally concludes as, “Oh Mother Sarasvati remove the darkness (ignorance) of my mind and bless me with the eternal knowledge.”
The “Prasadam” for the Goddess at the time of Basant Panchami celebrations varies from community to community. Some offers “Ber”/- a fruit, that is found in abundance in Northern and Eastern India, or “Sangari”- a kind of bean that grows on the roots of the radish plant.
¤ The Rituals Performed
The mythological history of Sarasvati associates her with the holy rituals performed on the banks of the river Sarasvati. She is worshipped as a goddess of speech, attributed to the formation of (words), invention of Sanskrit language and composition of hymns.
¤ Sarasvati –A Water Deity
The Vedas also describes Sarasvati as a water deity. The River Goddess –Sarasvat, according to popular belief originated from the Himalayas, Goddess in the form of river meander towards southeast of India, finally rendezvous with the River Ganges at Prayag and River Yamuna. Hence the place is called Triveni. In due time this course of water petered away.
(source:http://www.indiasite.com/festivals/basantpanchami.html)Basant Panchami has a specific meaning, Basant means Spring, whereas Panchami means the fifth day of the spring. It falls on Panchami – on the Waxing Moon. The festival lies in the month of January-February. The young girls dressed in the diverse shades of yellow magnify the splendor of nature. Kite flying, a popular sport in ...
A wonderful utility for Fun & Learning for children & elders
1) I’m sure many of you watched the recent taping of the Oprah Winfrey Show where her guest was Tommy Hilfiger. On the show, she asked him if the statements about race he was accused of saying were true.
Statements like’…‘If I’d known African-Americans, Hispanics, Jewish and Asians would buy my clothes, I WOULD NOT have made them so nice. I wish these people would *NOT* buy my clothes, as they are made for upper class white people‘
His answer to Oprah was a simple ‘YES’. Where after she immediately asked him to leave her show.
Scene took place on a British Airways flight between Johannesburg and London .
A White woman, about 50 years old, was seated next to a black man. Obviously disturbed by this, she called the air Hostess.
‘Madam, what is the matter,’ the hostess asked. ‘ You obviously do not see it then?’ she responded. ‘
You placed me next to a black man. I do not agree to sit next to someone from such a repugnant group.
Give me an alternative seat.’ ‘Be calm please,’ the hostess replied.
‘Almost all the places on this Flight is taken. I will go to see if another place is available.’
The Hostess went away and then came back a few minutes later. ‘Madam, Just as I thought, there are no other available seats in the economy class. I spoke to the captain and he informed me that there is a seat in the business class.
All the same, we still have one place in the first class.’ Before the woman could say anything, the hostess continued: ‘It is not Usual for our company to permit someone from the economy class to sit in the first class. However, given the circumstances, the captain feels that it would be scandalous to make someone sit next to someone so disgusting.’ She turned to the black guy, and said, ‘Therefore, Sir, if you would like to, please collect your hand luggage, a seat awaits you in first class.’
At that moment, the other passengers who were shocked by what they had just witnessed stood up and applauded.
(contributed by : Govind Kamath on 06.04.2011)1) I’m sure many of you watched the recent taping of the Oprah Winfrey Show where her guest was Tommy Hilfiger. On the show, she asked him if the statements about race he was accused of saying were true. Statements like’…‘If I’d known African-Americans, Hispanics, Jewish and Asians would buy my clothes, I WOULD NOT ...