How to Explain Hinduism

It's sometimes hard for me to remember that Hinduism can seem extremely strange, foreign, or confusing to people who aren't familiar with it. Maybe they've heard the word, they know it's associated with India, but that's it.In America there are a lot of times when you find yourself in an interfaith dialog. People ask you what Hinduism is and you're at a loss to sum it up or people want to open a pathway to encouraging you to convert to their religion.What is Hinduism?It's a good idea … [Read more...]


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When Is a Hat Just a Hat?

Okay, now that you know my deep dark secret, that I am terrifically fascinated with religious head covering, here's an interesting question...Where is the line between regular thing you would put on your head and a religious expression?I find that I have lines drawn in my mind, but I'm not sure that they are accurate or where exactly I have gotten the rules from. Example: hats are fine. We all wear hats in cold weather. Doesn't say anything about your religion. Hijabs are not okay. … [Read more...]


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Confession: I’m Fascinated By Hijabs

Personally I don't feel that me dressing like a Hindu, behaving like a Hindu, and generally living like a Hindu is at all appropriative. I am a Hindu, so I think it's appropriate! Sure, there aren't particular clothes that are labeled as Hindu, but there are clearly clothes in which you fit in during Hindu worship and clothes in which you do not.I'll tell you what is entirely inappropriate of me. I covet some of the religious expressions of religions that are not my own!I'm reluctant to … [Read more...]


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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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