Saturday, 4 June 2011

Western Hindu's coming together via Internet

I love the fact that what started as one lone blog of an Englishman in his quest to not only feel along his path but to help others has spawned quite a few other blogs along with this one. I think it is great we can have a community that helps to reinforce and help us each along in our journeys. We each have different paths, traditions and our own ideas about God but we pool together and help each other with words of advice and encouragement.

If you are a westerner that reads these blogs, please start your own blog or take an active part in our blogs with your own take and feelings on the subject. The larger our community becomes the easier it will be for others trying to feel through this maze we call Sanatana Dharma and be less likely to walk away discouraged from the endless possibilities. We all have an opportunity to help our community grow, be recognised as a movement that is not only solid in our sadhana, but a community that is here to stay.

For the Native Hindus that have taken part in our blogs, thank you, your knowledge and wisdom has been a god send to all of us and your input is highly valued. I know for me with out the help, support and input of Sita, Ella and Haresh I might not still be here. I know I would still be following my Dharma, but not here on the internet to help others that are interested in devotion to Sri Rama or interested in other paths by linking to other western follows of the other paths open to us.

To everyone in our community and to everyone that has taken part, made posts and given your thoughts on the topics we think important to ourselves at this point, THANK YOU! I love you all.

Kodanda

8 comments:

Talkingbees-Learn Bengali-Hindi-Online-USA-London said...

I am surprised to get in contacts with the westerners interested in Hindu Dharma.

I don't feel it here in India, but it's influencing the world. Nice to meet you.

Susmita

Kodanda said...

Namaste Susmita,

Hey you tweeted me! :P Thank you.

India has been influencing the world for thousands of years and I think it is interesting that Indians, since Independence, has started realizing this. From mathematics and astronomy to the Greeks and Arabs, Literature and philosophy had a great influence on writer through the ages in many different cultures. The Bhagavad Gita and many other works really started influencing the modern west starting in the 1700's and gained quite a following during the 1800's. Heavily influencing the works of Southey, Emerson and Thoreau. While I doubt these writers considered themselves Hindu they did a lot to expose the Gita to the West. If it wasn't for the statutory discrimination acts that was passed in the 1800's by bigoted early settlers to the west that felt they were being placed in the minority by asian groups coming to America, I thin Buddhism and Hinduism would have had a much larger impact on American society. In America, since the Luce–Celler Act of 1946, the slow but constant stream of east Indians into America has definitely made an impact on American culture. From Yoga, to the New-age Hinduism and Advaita Missions and Gaudiya/Iskcon. More and more Mandirs are popping up and many Jiva's in the west are waking up and calling us to our religion of birth. :D

In the UK, where I grew up, Indian culture and religion permeates throughout our society. I mean hell, where would we be without milk-teas and curry?

Never the less, fact remains, Santana Dharma is eternal, without borders and pays no mind to racial or cultural differences, when you are called it is like being hit by a tonne of bricks and you wake up and see things differently. But then again, if you read my earlier post and then start looking into the Indian and Western scholarly inquiries into the similarities of Celtic and Vedic Cultures, DNA (Celts and Northern Indians are both branches of the same tree) and the work on the out of India theory and we could possibly surmise (as the Indians have known for a few millennium, we are in fact the same people with a common culture. Unfortunately, many miles, many years and in the west the destructing power of Christianity made us forget this.

barani said...

I question the very concept and need for a white-Hindu sub-group.

In the last 100 years, almost every white person who became Hindu was welcomed.

( With the only exception of Jagannath temple )

Simply visit the local temple and attend the various functions and festivals

Kodanda said...

"I question the very concept and need for a white-Hindu sub-group"

There isn't, and this was the start of this recent string of posts. But fact remains it is nice to have community, people who are or have gone through the same process as you. It's nothing more than a mutual support kind of thing. It's not about "us and them" or any nonsuch rubbish like that. :D

Aamba said...

You question it until you're faced with it. If I could just fit in and not be "educated" and questioned at every turn, that would be awesome. I would rather not be stared at, pointed at, and assumed to be ignorant because of my skin color, but I am.

Kodanda said...

You do have a point about being assumed ignorant. I was talking to a lady on my tailoring forum, who come to find out is a Sri Vaishnava (Iyenger). Anyway, when we first started talking about it she actually linked the wiki for Ramanuja. Here I am talking to her about all sorts of Sri Sampradaya topics and she links me a wiki page LOL. I think that is the most niggling thing I think. I know I am ignorant of a lot of things, and I am willing to learn and want to learn to expand my knowledge of my religion, but to be constantly be given the Hinduism 098 or 101 treatment does get old. Especially by Indian practitioners that know as much if not less than you. But I think as out community grows and we become a more common sight at Mandir and social functions if will work itself out.

barani said...

Historically, conversion into Hinduism involved a whole tribe and there were no socialisation problems

Hinduism is generally not used to individual conversions. Except sometimes one marries a Hindu and the in-laws ease the social transition

Anonymous said...

Hi

I accidentally stumbled on to this and am astonished! A western person adopting Vaishnava philosophy and that too from the south (and a Shri Rama bhakt no less). I am from the South but not a Vaishnava. However, knowing the incredible depth of the Vaishnava tradition in South India and the extensive work you would have done is an inspiration. If there are many like you then the world would be a great place. You are indeed fortunate and please accept the very best wishes from someone who aspires to be a Rama bhakt. Your journey to explain the Sampradaya to non-south (indeed non-tamil speaking people) is challenging.

I am sure many others would have said what I have done but I needed to put in my respects.

Jai Sita Rama