Culture


Colours of HoliHoli is fast approaching.  Every year, since I became a mom (not that long ago 🙂  )  I make an effort to celebrate Holi with natural colours, to protect my lil’ one from toxic colours.  (Not to mention mother nature!). 

Today I suddenly realised that I need to stock up on colours for my lil’ one’s first real Holi! (Last year he could barely walk and had very few friends, except doting aunties of his locality, to play holi with).  This year for the first time my lil one will be running around with other kids playing holi….

Although sadly I cannot control the colours the other kids use on Holi day, I will try and minimise the damage by using natural colours in our family.  Here’s a quick reckoner on how to make natural colours for holi.  The wet colours are easier to make than dry gulal ( I think 🙂 ).

Wet Colours/ Coloured water:

MAGENTA: slice and dunk 2-3 beetroots in a bucket of water, soak for 2-3 hours.
YELLOW: 2 spoons of turmeric powder in 2 liters of water, boil to increase colour concentration
RED: 2 spoons of Red sandalwood powder boiled in 2 liters of water
Blue: Indigo plant leaves boiled in water

Dry colours:

YELLOW: 2 spoons of turmeric powder in 4 spoons of gram flour (besan) or any other flour (atta)
RED: Red Sandal Wood Powder / Raktachandan
Blue: The Jacaranda flowers can be dried in the shade and ground to obtain a beautiful blue powder

This time Holi weekend brings double celebrations for us.  My lil one turns 2  over the Holi weekend!  Preperations of the lil one’s grand birthday party have overshadowed the Holi event.  Hence I have no time to make the natural colours myself.  So off to the market to buy natural colours.  Check out the listing of shops in major cities of India where you can buy such natural holi colours/gulal.

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Sita Agni PareekshaTough question to answer. Sita has often been “interpreted” as a docile meek character who followed her husband to the end of the earth/forests. In return, aspersions were cast on her character and she was banished from Ram’s kingdom.

However interpretations are often just that. Here is another interpretation of Sita’s character.

The saints/politicians/rulers of the time may interpret the epic poem (Ramayan) by Valmiki, any-which way they want. The truth still remains. Sita was a smart and graceful lady. She was a strong woman in her own right, but without the anger and aggressiveness of Draupadi style of justice. Quiet strength and not aggression was her trademark. Lets take a quick look at Ramayan from this point of view. (more…)

How can a saviour renounce his wife and new born child? A GOD who shows the path to nirvana (enlightenment)? In Hindu religion each MAN has to go through four ashrams/stages of life. One important stage of this is the ‘grihastha ashram’ or householder phase. This was defined as a time that MAN should spend in raising a family and  fulfilling his duties to society.

So how can a man who renounced his householder duties, deserted two lives that were dependant on him, be regarded as a saint? A man makes a decision, a commitment in fact, when he marries a woman, and begets a child. Once the decision is made, the rightful thing in any religion/culture would require the man to stand by his decision. Renouncing his duties, in pursuit of other things (divine knowledge in this case), can not be condoned. (more…)

Ever wondered why the beautiful women find it difficult to find happiness in relationships?

The men in their life were attracted to them because of their outer beauty.  Different types of men are attracted to her beauty for different reasons. None, however are able to make her happy.

Types of men:

  • Rich Or Famous (Or better still rich AND famous): If a man is rich or famous, he treats the woman as a trophy. Now being regarded as a trophy can’t be a very happy position for long.
  • Handsome: If a man is good looking, he wants a Barbie doll to complement his looks. The Barbie doll in question being a full grown person, mouths opinions, much to the shock of the man. Consequently Barbie doll is not happy.
  • Not handsome/rich/famous: If a man is not the handsome/rich/famous variety, and does manage to land a good looking woman, he suffers from inferiority complex. Now the poor woman either has to hide her beauty or bear the jealousy and complexes of her man.

Moral of the story. It is easy to fall prey to the adulation and wooing piled on her by the men smitten by her looks. But a woman needs to look beyond. I am not saying women should go after men who are indifferent to her. Just men who have some level of maturity. Enough maturity to appreciate the beautiful outer shell, but not be blinded by it. Men who will look at as well as beyond good looks. And men who will cherish the whole woman in her entirety. A tall order indeed. But when did I say finding happiness was easy!

teen bahuraniyan

The k serials produced by Ekta Kapoor and other such soaps are a great guide for todays urban women, on managing their in-laws.

Was just chatting with a friend today. And she said something that I have come to realize in the last couple of years. The writers of ekta kapoor serials may all be writing about the same old topic. The mother in law- daughter in law relationship. But the situations they write into their serials the manipulations scheming in-laws do on TV are not that far from today’s indian reality. Many a times not just me, but many of my friends have felt this. That we should follow these serials like a bible and learn from them. On how to manage your in-laws and give your marriage a fighting chance.

Our generation has learnt how to manage our careers in schools and colleges. but in this race to be equal to the men, in a male dominated society, we lost out on the art of managing your in-laws. There are tips and tricks and even whole dialogs in these serials that one an use to save themselves, whenever sticky situations arise with the in-laws.
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Was just watching the bollywood smash hit “Chak de”. The movie revolves around story of a scraggly bunch of state level women hockey players, that get coached (bulldozed more like it) into becoming a world class national team.

One has to say, the scene where the Indian women’s hockey team get together and beat up a group of eve teasers is just too good. I am all for non violence, but the problem of eve teasing is a constant irritant in the streets of India. As a woman I had to personally learn martial arts to feel safe on the roads. Its another matter that I liked martial arts. But lets save that topic for another blog. I seem to have digressed a little.

The sight of a couple of feminine (and not so feminine) looking women hockey playesr bashing up eve teasers was very gladdening. It warmed the cockles of my heart. Go woman power. Wish I could see more of that off screen in real life.

Three cheers!

🙂

Vicars ban ‘un-Christian’ yoga for toddlers 

Yoga, a form of  exercise methodology with its roots in ancient India has been banned by two vicars in somerset, UK.  It is very disturbing to hear leaders of communities have such opinions. All sects and religions have a right to believe in whatever they place their faith in. However, Yoga is just a form of exercise that relaxes body and mind.

Its origin is in Hinduism, but Yoga in itself has nothing to do with religion.

Each culture has something good to offer. And the global citizen should have the right to partake of whatever good things the human race has discovered, irrespective of which country and religion discovered it.

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