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Hinduism

Now I am become Death, the Destroyer of Worlds

Apart from the Indians, there are few who have openly declared that creation, sustenance, and destruction of this mysterious world is the task of one frenemy. The power of the world is not always the “All-good” Durga, but it is also congruent to Kali- the dancing, devastating and destructive one. The coefficient (which unites in action to produce a given effect) of life /Kurukshetra, himself is the charioteer or guide and the creator of living life. Through all these turmoil and conflicts, starting from global to the system, societal, household, relationship, and professional till petty personal level, to what Godliness is He taking us into? For the better good? We have to sort out by our own in which way we are going, how and for what?

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The sixty-four yogini temple of Hirapur

Some of the images of yoginis are extensively used in the present Odissi dance to depict different avatars of Durga. Here one of the yogini images looked like lord Ganesha it looked like ‘ Lady Ganesha’... The cult of Chausath Yoginis was one of the most esoteric cults in medieval India which vanished as suddenly as it emerged in the Indic religious landscape, leaving very little trace of its existence.

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An overview of the ceremonies in becoming a Mahari in Puri Jagannatha Temple

The social status enjoyed by the maharis were special and important during the rule of the king and the maharis never became widows as they were married to Lord Jagannatha. The maharis re-invented herself at every age until their status declined in modern society after the passing of the anti-nautch act. Centuries of negotiation have silenced a community of traditional artists, social status and their livelihood.

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VAV – the site of stone carved models

The Vavs are generally constructed of sandstone and limestone texture which are permeable and semi-permeable rocks that allow the rainwater to percolate and flow through the levels and the multi-storeyed construction and reach the wells in a controlled rhythm. This also sets an example of a unique method of rainwater harvesting in those eras.

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[Long Read] Book Review on Aravindan Neeklandan’s Hindutva: A Grand Journey of core Hindutva Ideas through Indic Perspective

Aravindan’s Hindutva: Origin, Evolution and Future is a grand journey of core Hindu ideas as they have evolved, expanded and endured over thousands of years. It is a story of seers, thinkers and activists who have shaped the cultural and intellectual discourse in India. Hindutva, in this journey, comes out not as a monolithic identity seeking to crush dissent and diversity, but as a dynamic and organic process that rests on the solid foundations of spiritual pluralism (Shashtra), open exploration and constructive dialogues (Shashtrartha).

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Demilitarizing the Rigveda (Part 3): A scrutiny of Vedic Warfare

If “forts”, “dark-skinned enemies”, “chariots” and “spoked-wheels” are almost always metaphors for beings and devices operating in the supra-physical spheres, the counter-argument is that a metaphor nevertheless implies and presupposes a physical counterpart. The question, therefore, is whether the text offers a few non-metaphorical descriptions of battles, however embellished they may be.

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Demilitarizing the Rigveda (Part 2): A scrutiny of Vedic Chariots

By the time of the Katha Upanishad, the metaphor of the horse, though slightly altered from the Rgvedic imagery, had become perfectly explicit: “Know the self to be the chariot’s master, and the body, the chariot itself; know the intellect to be the charioteer, and the mind, the reins. “The horses”, the Upanishad continues, “are the five senses which must be reined in by our intellect and higher mind, and ultimately the self”. The chariot, here, stands for the body or our external being.

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Madalsa and Ritudhwaj: An ancient love story of union and re-union from Markandeya Purana

Nothing was visible inside. But the horse moved slowly into the obscure passage and eventually entered the Patal-loka or underworld with his master. After struggling for a long time a little glimpse of light was seen coming from a distance.“But where is the bloody monster?”, the prince exclaimed. At once, they got the sight of a beautiful town with a nice gorgeous palace that left him surprised and mesmerized at the same time. He whispered, “Wow! a wonderful town indeed. It reminds me of Indra’s abode. Isn’t it Kubalaya?”.

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Luther Burbank – A Saint Amidst the Roses

Though the form of Burbank lies in Santa Rosa under a Lebanon cedar that he planted years ago in his garden, his soul is enshrined for me in every wide-eyed flower that blooms by the wayside. Withdrawn for a time into the spacious spirit of nature, is that not Luther whispering in her winds, walking her dawns?

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Self and Self-Becoming in Individual and World: The Fourth Brahmana from first Adhyaya of Brihadaranyaka Upanishad (Part 2)

Right in the beginning, there was Atman alone in the shape of a person. It looked around and saw nothing other than itself. This act of ‘looked around and saw’ or this looking around is the chakravartin. This is the solar traversal. It is measuring itself by a certain outlook.

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