Understanding KARMA through GRAVITY !

Karma is a key Hindu concept not always easily explained. Comparing it with the gravity, however, helps to illustrate how it works. Obviously, the law of gravitation existed before Newton discovered it. Similarly, the law of karma was actively at work long before some ancient sage first consciously came to understand it. Both these laws […]

Why tradition ?

Religious tradition has often been a negative factor in the world. It sets up various authorities and conditioning patterns that stifle individual intelligence and creativity. It establishes vested interests who war with one other to control the minds of people. It appears that we would be better off without it. However, if we look deeply, […]

The re-emergence of the woman priestess

Whilst the topic of “Women Priests and Spiritual Leaders” remains controversial in many religions, such as Catholicism, Hinduism from ancient times has boasted a number of remarkable female spiritual leaders. The Rig Veda, the most ancient Hindu sacred text, cites more than 30 women sages. However, in medieval times, a period of intense conflict and […]

Raksha Bandhan: A wish of protection

Everybody loves Raksha Bandhan – the festival celebrating the relationship between brother and sister. When we are young, it is a fun day in the summer on which everybody gets dressed up; gifts are given and nice food eaten. Girls tie rakhis on the wrists of their brothers, cousins, and sometimes close friends. At the […]

Legends of Raksha Bandhan (brief)

Main Raksha Bandhan article: Raksha Bandhan – A wish of protection  There are records in Hindu sacred literature, the Puranas and the Mahabharata, of the practice of the tying of a rakhi by a sister on her brother, but there is no clear account of its origin. Several legends are thought to mark the origins […]

“What’s this man, you turning into a priest or something?”

When I used to study for exams at university I sometimes kept a copy of the Gita on the table with me. I’d read a page or two now and again, for example during breaks. Straight away I would begin to feel more focused and positive. The Gita certainly was an important companion for me […]

A personal intellectual journey away from the “All Religious are Equal” mentality prevalent amongst Hindus

As per my typical “modern-Hindu” upbringing – I was taught to see all other religions in the best possible light, on par with my own. “All religions are a path to the same God” was an often repeated phrase when talking about religion. I remember a member of my family speaking in praise of Prophet […]

Hindus in Saudia Arabia

Having had a friend of my family who went to Saudi Arabia to work as a medical doctor, I’ve heard first hand accounts of how difficult life is for the several thousand Hindus who live in Saudi Arabia. Not only were him and his family not allowed to openly practice Hinduism, they were not allowed […]

Arvind Kejriwal’s spectacular rise & fall: A Hindu psychoanalysis

When an individual sets out to do something for a worthwhile cause, there is usually at the beginning a genuine idealism. Most people do not set out with the aim of impressing others and attracting praise; but it is inevitable that over time sincere efforts start attracting attention, praise and adulation. Different people react to […]

Wave particle duality & Hinduism

In 1905 Einstein published a paper about the “Photoelectric Effect” which showed that electromagnetic radiation can behave as particles rather than waves in some experiments. It was for this work that he later won the Nobel prize for Physics even though he is more famous for his work on Relativity (with its famous equation E=mc2). […]

Hindu view of Alternative Sexuality

Unlike the Abrahamic faiths, Hindu tradition does not have a canon or canonical laws. It is an inclusive tradition. Nothing is banned outright, though some practice(s) are not approved and are sometimes even punished. Hindu tradition has recognised the wide range of human sexual diversity and banned none, though non-mainstream versions have always been relegated […]

Posthumous controversy on the religious identity of Sri Aurobindo

The religious culture which now goes by the name of Hinduism … gave itself no name, because it set itself no sectarian limits; it claimed no universal adhesion, asserted no sole infallible dogma, set up no single narrow path or gate of salvation; it was less a creed or cult than a continuously enlarging tradition […]

Book review: What every Hindu should know about Christianity

This book may appear to be controversial and confrontational to some, yet it is very well-written and scholarly and covers an important subject. In recent decades, Christianity has made significant (one could even say impressive) inroads into Indian society, mainly at the expense of Hinduism. Indians often associate Christianity with the prosperity, progress and liberal […]

Hindu view of “scriptures”

A man of true knowledge who has attained enlightenment, has the same use for all the scriptures as one has for a small reservoir of water in a place flooded on all sides (Bhagavad Gita 2:46) What does the Gita mean by this verse? This verse actually demonstrates some very important points about Hinduism with regards to […]

What it means to me to be a Hindu

Thousands of years ago, in ancient India and other neighbouring lands, a great civilisation arose. To me, being a Hindu makes me an heir of this civilisation and confers upon me the responsibility for its well being and continuity. Despite some errors and aberrations, Hindu civilisation has made a unique contribution to humanity’s collective knowledge and […]

De-stressing the Hindu way

There’s a set of Sanskrit shlokas (verses) which I try and recite every morning and evening, followed by a few minutes of meditation. I’ve been saying these prayers for many years. When I keep up with the discipline of doing this regularly, it feels like my days go much better; I feel positive and have […]

A Hindu view on the use of alcohol

The consumption of alcohol has existed in human society since time immemorial. Probably all societies, at least in historically-recorded times, have had members who have used alcohol, which has been a common source of relaxation, intoxication or inebriation. In the modern world, all types of alcoholic beverages are freely available in the world market. Most […]

Mantra: what it is & what it does

If we observe ourselves we can see that all day long there is background chatter in the mind. It may be the repetition of some song we have heard on the radio, it may be a rehashing of some experience we have just had, an insult or argument for example, or a consideration of what […]

Apu of “The Simpsons” … Positive Hindu character or degrading stereotype?

The most famous Hindu outside India! There’s been a lot of controversy about how Hindus are portrayed in the West in media and arts in general. Hindus have long protested about being stereotyped on TV as oppressed women awaiting liberation, and chauvinistic men. Whereas critics have argued that any Hindus who object are fundamentalist, extremist, […]

Be wary of some English translations of Hindu sacred texts

Most Hindus living in a predominantly English speaking environment have an urge at one point in their lives to learn about Hinduism. Sometimes the curiosity arises from a genuine desire for guidance in life. In other cases the urge to look into Hinduism comes from a particular incident – for example being asked questions that […]