The “Happy Holidays” Fight

When I was a kid growing up in the 1980s, it was the birth of political correctness. We learned to try to include everyone, appreciate diversity, and be sensitive to other's feelings in our words. Shopkeepers who used to say "merry Christmas" to all the people in the store began to replace it with "happy Holidays" to include more people.I still think that's a great thing.Today there is a backlash against political correctness. Why can't we say what we mean? Why do we have to censor our … [Read more...]


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My Home Puja Altar

I realized that it's about time to update you on my home puja space. The last video I did was in our previous apartment. Now we're in a new place (moved in in March, so we've been here a while) and I have a lovely place for my altar!Sorry it's so narrow. I keep forgetting which way to hold the camera! … [Read more...]


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Reading the Upanishads: Kena chapter one

We are doing a scripture study together: reading along through some scriptures and discussing the passages. Today we are starting the Kena Upanishad. The previous scripture was the Isha Upanishad (find all Scripture posts here)Here are a few different translations of the first section of the Kena Upanishad...1)Chapter I 1 The disciple asked: Om. By whose will directed does the mind proceed to its object? At whose command does the prana, the foremost, do its duty? At whose will do … [Read more...]


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Hindus and Christmas

There are many, many Hindus who don't feel defensive about the holidays of other religions and happily join in celebrations for any festival. It is often said that Indians love to celebrate and will participate in any holiday that's available!It strikes me that you must be really secure and confident in your religion to be able to embrace and enjoy the holidays of other religions. I strive to be that way.For me it's hit or miss. Each year around Christmas is different for me. Some … [Read more...]


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Why Do Hindus Not Eat Beef [Google Questions Answered]

Another search engine question that I found is: Why Do Hindus Not Eat Beef? I've addressed this a little bit here and there, but always as part of a larger post. Today I'm just going to talk about beef and cows...Growing up in America, beef is every where. For some Americans, it's part of every dinner. It is the thing our diets are most based on. Without meat, and often specifically beef, it's not a meal.I think to many Americans not eating cow seems arbitrary. Certainly some Hindus … [Read more...]


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Puja Help From A Surprising Source!

I've been wandering around Amazon.com and I was startled to realize that there are a lot of Hindu items there. Amazon really is good at having nearly everything you can imagine available!Take a look at what I uncovered... Help Guides and BooksHavan Puja HandbookHow to Conduct Puja to the Navagrahas: a manual with step-by-step instructions Purna Vidya: Puja & PrayersSimple Kali PujaLaxmi Vrat How ToShiva Puja and Advanced YajnaRitual Worship of … [Read more...]


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How To Use Japa Mala Beads

Japa Mala beads are the Hindu rosary. I say that so those not familiar with them can get a basic idea of what they are and what they are used for. The Hindu mala beads were certainly in existence long before Christianity was a thing, so there is some evidence that Christianity may have gotten the idea for the rosary from Hinduism. Many cultures do have prayer beads, ways of counting repetitions of mantras or prayers, and they probably all began with Hindu malas. "The use of beads in prayer … [Read more...]


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How to Have an American Thanksgiving

This Thursday is American Thanksgiving, one of the only non-religious holidays we've got!It's got a somewhat unfortunate origin, but I'm glad to have a holiday I can celebrate along with the rest of my country. As much as I love the freedoms and wealth afforded me as an American, I don't always feel connected, but Thanksgiving is one of those things that really makes me feel like an American.The best part of Thanksgiving is spending time with family. The other great thing about it is the … [Read more...]


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Flower Rangoli Mold: Make Your Own

You know those amazing flower arrangements that you see around Diwali? Like these ones...25 most colorful rangoli designs with flowersI don't think I could freehand creations like that, but through a group of pins on Pinterest I figured out a way to make molds for them. I can't wait to try this!The first thing that I saw was this article on making big, beautiful letters out of flowers:The instructions at Urbanic Paper gave me some great ideas about how to adapt this … [Read more...]


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