India has often been recognized as a country of unique and distinct culture. India has many languages, religions, music, dance, foods, architecture, etc. which differs from its state to state. The Indian culture is an amalgamation of several cultures and has been influenced by the Indian history.
The diversity of Indian culture can be seen under the following heads.
The Indian culture can be best observed during the festivals. India, being a multicultural and multireligious country, it has several festivals to celebrate. The popular Hindu-religion festivals like Navratri, Ganesh Chaturthi, Dussehra, etc are celebrated with full zeal and excitement. However, the way of celebration changes from state to state. Navratri is being celebrated in the western part of India by playing Garba-Raas and Dandiya, while the same is celebrated in the form of Durga Puja in Bengal which is an Eastern part of India. In North India, Navratri is being celebrated by worshipping and keeping fasts for the Goddess Durga throughout the nine days.
Apart from the Hindu festivals, India also celebrates Eid-ul-Fitr, Eid-ul-Adha (Bakri Eid), Baisakhi, Guru Nanak Jayanti, Christmas and Easter with the same spirit in its several cities. Festivals make India united with different cultures.
Indian culture is very famous for its greeting manner. ‘Namaste’ is the term which is used to greet people when they meet. This term is derived from Sanskrit which means ‘I bow to the divine in you’. However, this term gets changed a bit while moving from state to state. This includes Namaste/Namaskar (Hindi, Odia, Marathi), Namaskara(Kannada), Namaskaram (Telugu, Malayalam), Vanakkam (Tamil), Nomoshkaar (Bengali), Nomoskar (Assamese), Aadab (Urdu), and Sat Shri Akal (Punjabi).
These greetings or the salutations are used at the time of depart as well. This shows the respect.
Clothing pattern of India varies from state to state but usually preferred and prominent style includes sarees for women and dhoti kurta or dhoti pyjama for men. Here Indian culture seems to be different in a way of draping saree. However, there are many states in India where regional preferences of clothing are observed. These preferences are observed due to the climatic conditions and the physical activities of a woman.
Apart from the clothing style, Indian culture also differentiated based on the make-up of Indian women, like bindi, bangles, sindoor(vermillion). Sindoor is a red or orange colour powder which is applied by a married woman after parting her hair. The application of sindoor is a traditional Indian culture.
India is rich in its spices and so in its cuisine. From Kashmiri mouthwatering Rogan Josh to Tamil Nadu’s Dosa and Uttapam, from Gujarati Dhokla to Kolkata’s Maachh-Bhaat (Fish curry and Rice) all are worth to taste. Indian food has a vast variety and variations. The taste and ingredients change its preparation style also while moving from one state to another. Indian cuisine is the best cuisine around the world as it has a blend of flavours and a feel of food.
Parenting is also an important part of our Indian culture. The raising up of a child also varies from region to region. Despite having variations, the Indian culture always teaches Life values, Discipline and the importance of family support while raising the kids.
If we talk about the variations in parenting styles in India, we will observe that the parents from East India (Bihar, West Bengal, Odisha, and many others) are bit introvert and over-protective in nature. However, they provide better food and manners to their child. On the other hand, parents from western states of India (Goa, Maharashtra, Gujarat, etc.) are quite extrovert and modern in their thoughts. The living standards are generally high which affects the parenting style too. The parents from the southern part of India strives majorly on education and cleanliness, while the parents from northern parts of the country give more focus to health and diet.
The diversity of Indian culture has inspired many people. Although the concept of Indian Culture’ is complex and complicated, still India has unity on its diversity.
Have you been to India? What struck you most about Indian culture?