Examining The Varied Heritage Of Indian Culture Cultural Studies Essay

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One thing in which India faces no competition is it's varied culture and heritage. The culture of India has been shaped by the long history of India, its unique geography and the absorption of customs, traditions and ideas from some of its neighbors as well as by preserving its ancient heritages, which were formed during the Indus Valley Civilization and evolved further during the Vedic age, rise and decline of Buddhism, Golden age, Muslim conquests and European colonization. India's great diversity of cultural practices, languages, customs, and traditions are examples of this unique co-mingling over the past five millennia.

At all levels India has added great number of languages in to the diverse cultures and traditions. There were 1000 (if you count regional dialects and regional words) languages are spoken by Indians Altogether, but unfortunately now there are 415 living languages in India. The Constitution of India has stipulated the national language Hindi and English to be the two official languages of communication for the Union Government.

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India is one of the most religiously diverse nations in the world, with some of the most deeply religious societies and cultures. Religion still plays a central and definitive role in the life of most of its people. India is the birth place of Dharmic religions such as Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism and Sikhism Today, Hinduism and Buddhism are the world's third- and fourth-largest religions respectively, with around 1.4 billion followers

India, being a multi-cultural and multi-religious society, celebrates holidays and festivals of various religions. The three national holidays in India, the Independence Day, the Republic Day and the Gandhi Jayanti, are celebrated with zeal and enthusiasm across India. In addition, many states and regions have local festivals depending on prevalent religious and linguistic demographics. Popular religious festivals include the Hindu festivals of Diwali, Ganesh Chaturthi, Durga puja, Holi, Rakshabandhan and Dussehra. Several harvest festivals, such as Sankranthi, Pongal and Onam, are also fairly popular. Certain festivals in India are celebrated by multiple religions. Notable examples include Diwali which celebrated by Hindus, Sikhs and Jains and Buddh Purnima which is celebrated by Buddhists and Hindus. Islamic festivals, such Eid ul-Fitr, Eid al-Adha and Ramadan, are celebrated by Muslims across India.

Well different religions have unlike practices, rituals and all but in these entire dissimilarities one thing common is the way they greet each. 'Namaskar or Namaskaram' is a common spoken greeting or salutation in the India. Namaskar is considered a slightly more formal version than namasté but both express deep respect. It is commonly used in India and Nepal by Hindus, Jains and Buddhists, sikhs and many continue to use this outside the Indian subcontinent. In Indian and Nepali culture, the word is spoken at the beginning of written or verbal communication. However, the same hands folded gesture is made wordlessly upon departure. In yoga, namasté is said to mean "The light in me honors the light in you," taken literally, it means "I bow to you"

Food is an important part of Indian culture, playing a role in everyday life as well as in festivals. In many families, everyday meals are sit-down affairs consisting of two to three main course dishes, varied accompaniments such as chutneys and pickles, carbohydrate staples such as rice and roti (bread), as well as desserts. Food is not just important for an Indian family by ways of eating, but it is also taken as a sort of socializing, getting together with a family of many. Indian cuisine varies from region to region, Generally, Indian cuisine can be split into four categories: North, South, East, and West Indian. Despite this diversity, some unifying threads emerge. Varied uses of spices are an integral part of food preparation, and are used to enhance the flavor of a dish and create unique flavors and aromas. Cuisine across India has also been influenced by various cultural groups that entered India throughout history, such as the Persians, Mughals, and European powers.

Different religions, languages, festivals, cuisine and now different clothing. Traditional Indian clothing for women is the saris and also Ghaghra Cholis (Lehengas). For men, traditional clothes are the Dhoti, pancha veshti or Kurta. Bombay, also known as Mumbai, is one of India's fashion capitals. In some village parts of India, traditional clothing mostly will be wornBindi is part of the women's make-up. Traditionally, the red bindi (or sindhur) was worn only by the married Hindu women, but now it has become a part of women's fashion

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As far as Indian art is concerned, music and dance from an integral part of Indian arts. The music of India includes multiples varieties of religious, folk, popular, pop, and classical musicIndian dance and music considered to be just another form of entertainment, traces its origins back several thousands of years. Music is the language of emotion and is an important part of the Indian culture. Music and dance are languages  by themselves, capable of expressing subtle thoughts and refined ideas. Few of the Indian dance forms are Baratnatyam, Kathak, Kathakali, Kuchipudi, Manipuri, odissi, Mohiniattam and many more.While naturally evolving with the dynamic forces of history and creative influence of great masters, these traditions have maintained the integrity of their fundamental heritage.