Indians in Media

Suddenly there's a bunch of new options for Americans to see people of Indian origin on TV! It's not just TV, either. Indians and Americans of Indian ethnicity are making themselves heard and I love it.TVMaster of None (on Netflix): Aziz Ansari plays Dev, an Indian-American actor. It's hilarious and my favorite episode is the one about his parents and his friend's parents. Ansari cast his real mother and father and they bring so much heart to it that they steal the … [Read more...]


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A New Case of Appropriation?

There's been buzz going around lately about a music video put out by Coldplay featuring Beyonce that is set in India. Brown Girl Magazine asked people for their responses and here are their thoughts...Hymn For the Weekend: Cultural Appropriation or Not?Representation or Appropriation?This article at The Independent rounds up many responses, many of them positive or not seeing what the issue is."These videos, along with Coldplay’s, continue a long, dubious tradition of depicting I … [Read more...]


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How To Pronounce Indian Names

A friend of mine was complaining recently that people go out of their way to avoid saying her name and it causes unnecessary confusion. She made a great educational video on how to say her name. I was surprised at first hearing that she had this problem because to me Indian names are mostly pretty straightforward. But I realized that, of course, I have a great deal of familiarity with them. That was not always the case and so I thought I might be able to help demystify Indian names for other … [Read more...]


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Miracles and Gurus

I think I am a great example of how important it is to be patient and cautious when waiting for a guru. I've always advised you to exercise great care before dedicating yourself to a spiritual leader. You have the Truth within you and you shouldn't give your power over to someone who doesn't deserve it. And the vast majority of spiritual leaders don't deserve it. There's a lot of frauds out there and there's a lot of misguided people who become leaders because of not pure motives and still have … [Read more...]


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Racial Identity: me and Rachel Dolezal

I've been hearing about this situation with Rachel Dolezal for a few days and biding my time trying to understand my thoughts about it. She's a woman who identifies as Black racially but has no known Black ancestry. When it came to light that this woman-- who was a chapter president of NAACP-- had White parents, debate and outrage and discussion ensued. It's a discussion that really goes beyond this one woman's behavior and highlights that racial identity is not as simple or clear cut as we like … [Read more...]


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Why Do Indians Eat With Their Hands?

It never occurred to me to ask this question. As soon as I found that some cultures eat with their fingers instead of utensils I was thrilled and immediately stopped using utensils as much as possible! I've always loved eating with my hands for two reasons...One: Whatever the material of utensils, they interfere with the taste of the food. It adds metallic or plastic or wood taste to your food. I hate that!Two: I've always felt like the taste of the food is heightened when my fingers … [Read more...]


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The Truth About Caste & Hinduism

The role of caste is a very big issue in Hinduism. It is the number one thing that non-Hindus use to criticize Hinduism. Lower caste Hindus are often converted away from Hinduism with promises of equality (whether or not that equality actually happens is questionable). The Hindu American Foundation has written a detailed essay on why it might be a mistake to align caste and Hinduism.From my own perspective the way caste discrimination is practiced is a problem...but do I think that because … [Read more...]


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Another White Hindu Story

I saw this video posted on Facebook and I loved the story.It's amazing the different ways that people find themselves involved in Hinduism. You never know where life is taking you!  … [Read more...]


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Can Westerners Gain Enlightenment?

I know I'm always saying that in any given country or population, probably 95% of people aren't going to be strongly spiritual. I'm guessing at that number, but it seems that in the Kali Yuga very few feel the pull to chase down the mystery of what life means.So that means that in every religion and non-religion (in other words, atheists included) there are some who ask themselves the big questions about what our lives mean and others who aren't bothered by those questions. I don't think … [Read more...]


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