Is it really essential to be a secular being?

Is it really essential to be a secular being?

Or is it all just a hype ? 

In the fast paced modern society, when everything is changing so rapidly, I think it’s our obligation to make us as well as our family, more flexible, more adjustable so as to be more compatible with the norms of the society. The migration of people from one part of the world to another has also become one such norm.

Whether in search of job or to earn more money or just for a change or for their families or for any other reason, people today are not reluctant in making a change. Though the world is a small place, still the cultures, customs and traditions are quite different in each and every part, whether it’s within a particular country or outside a country.

In this age, the idea of being secular becomes essential.

When you respect each and every religion along with its customs –

–You’ll be able to mingle up with the residents of that place and definitely feel one amongst them.

–You’ll be joyful throughout as you can take part in their celebrations too , with full energy and enthusiasm.

–You’ll never be aloof or desserted in the hour of need as there’ll be a support system for you with whom you can share your griefs and sorrows.

–You can have celebrations round the year, thus leaving little or no room for negativity.

–And most importantly, you’ll also have a chance to spread your fragrance too.

Having no idea of tomorrow, I make it a point to teach or discuss various festivals with my kids so as to make them a responsible and a compassionate being. But, it was not easy initially as the obsolete but important question—

How to give them knowledge when I myself was not aware of most of the facts?                 

But it’s said-Where there’s a will, there’s a way. And in the process of finding the answer to the above question, I also became a ‘Learner’. And that helped me a lot, even helping now.

What I did was

–I educated myself about the particular festival. For example, if about Christmas, I learnt about its origin and importance through books and internet, of course.

–I got myself involved with the members of the particular community, who used to celebrate it and learnt to make the dishes and little things related to that festival. Like for Christmas, I learnt to make Christmas tree, bells and Christmas cake. Once we even made the snowman. And believe me, the experience was ecstatic.

–I even learnt some stories to narrate to my children about that festival. For Christmas, I learnt the story about Jesus Christ .

–And nothing is complete until you give your imagination, some colorful wings. So for Christmas, I created an imaginary Santa in my kids’ mind who would give them chocolates on 25th December. And it worked. Just after getting up, they look for their chocolates under their pillows. They thank Santa for the chocolates and relish the experience that they get from these little things whenever we come across any Christian family as they never feel left behind.

That’s why I feel it’s the feeling, the empathy towards any religion that matters a lot which only, we as parents can instill in the little hearts of our children .What they develop is faith, which they’ll definitely cherish later.

How Do We Achieve A Goal When We Have No Knowledge Of The World | Raising World Children | Parenting | family | kids | teaching Kids

  Ruchika Rastogi, an Indian who was born and brought up in Delhi. She loves to explore the unexplored. A mother of two lovely kids, she works as a teacher and her passion for writing has helped her survive during her hard times. Her first non fiction book got published last year with the name-A Mystical Majesty-the woman. As a contributing author, her anthology with the title–Wait Till I Tell You got launched recently. With dreams in her eyes, she believes in living life optimistically.
Tracking Tattoo Culture From Indian Tradition to High Fashion

Tracking Tattoo Culture From Indian Tradition to High Fashion


Source : Wikipedia Commons

My grandmother had some indelible symbols tattooed in her hands. Whenever I met her, I would ask “Was it painful?” The only reply I got from her is “yeah a little pinch”, with a blushing smile. That greenish symbol in her sagged skin, near the thumb was adorable.

The fascination towards indelible inking culture increased my desire to get tattooed. Once I entered college in 2007, I thought I would do it. But then I noticed the rapid increase in youngsters getting tattooed. Getting tattooed began to be considered overly Westernized. My conservative Indian parents forbid me from getting a tattoo ever. Thus, my wished died. I still imagine getting tattooed as the craving for bodily art remains inside me.

Tattoos in Indian Tribes

Tattoo culture have been around India since ancient times within the lower stratum or tribes. [bctt tweet=”What was initially considered taboo in Indian culture became a trending fashion in recent years.” username=”contactrwc”] Tattoos are even customized now and there some famous tattoo artists like “Manjeet Singh” from Delhi India, are considered a celebrity.

This turn of events is quite interesting! Let’s start with the reasons what I have studied it.

  • Tattooing was practiced among the rival tribes to avoid the abduction of women from their community. Women getting taken away was a common occurrence. To avoid that, women of their community got covered with tattoos to make them unappealing to others. It was a safe way protective cover.
  • The Singhpo tribe followed a set of rules on tattooing for both men and women. The unmarried girls are not allowed to get tattooed and the married folk are allowed to wear tattoos on specific parts of their body.
  • Tattoos are mostly used for tribal identity in the region during war times.
  • One of the tribes in Orissa believed that getting tattooed with beautiful geometric facial tattoos helps them recognize each other once they enter the spirit world. They were called as “People Of Spirit World”.
  • In some regions it is believed that the god of death — Yama’s displeasure and condemnation can be invoked in the absence of  tattoos.

Gradual Shift in Mindset

In South India, a community named “Korathi” , who were nomadic and roamed about every direction of the country searching of clients to get tattooed. Their main form of work was tattooing (Pachakuthuradhu in tamil) in return for rice, plantains, betel leaves and nuts, and sometimes cash too.

Korathis start their tattooing procedure with a benediction, blessing the individual who is going to be get tattooed. They then sing some nursery rhymes too to divert the clients from the pain.

People believe that tattooing designs resembling kolam on their body makes them safe from the evil around them until they reunited with deceased ancestors in the afterlife. Kolams are labyrinth symbols that are usually drawn at the house entrance using rice flour or chalk for keeping away the evil from their home.

Tattoos related to the tribal adaptations like a dragon, tiger among men and butterflies among women and other abstract art started  gaining popularity. Apart from the tribal symbols, memorial tattoos in name of loved ones which commemorate the death of a loved one or pet got enough attention in every age group. I actually found an interesting article detailing the history of Indian Tattoos here.

Over the past few decades, tattoos have inspired the Indian youth. The regional and spiritual beliefs though have been left behind.

The desire for making a statement or marking a memory will never allow the tattoo culture to fade away. The reasoning for getting tattooed has taken way more paths. Bodily art has become a fashion statement now. It has become a part of pop culture, where seeing the inking art is a path to express their beliefs, memories and their current phase of life. Tattoos are no longer just about identity and territory, it’s also a expressing your story in a creative way.

From the tribes of India, to pop culture, body art in India have come a long way. Tattoo culture is always seen as a combination of high trend fashion and ancient times

Do you have a tattoo? What’s the story behind it?

How Tattoos went from Indian Tradition to High Fashion #tattoos #cultures #indian #values #origins

 Sindhuja Kumar is a proud mom and a lifestyle blogger living in Connecticut, USA and origin from Tamilnadu, India. She is happily married and nothing excites her more than being a mom. She blogs to keep herself sane, more or less writing about positive parenting adventures, DIY Craft tutorials & scrumptious recipes that empowers every mom and woman to stay inspired and living an elegant life in a creative way. Check her work @ PassionateMoms.

Indian Historical Stories – Chetak The Immortal Blue Horse

Chetak : The Immortal Blue Horse


Battles are won and lost. Leaving behind stories of heroes. Often times in war, it is not only the men fighting but the animals who fight for them that make for tales of glory.

Chetak was the horse of Maharana Pratap, whose role in the battle of Haldighati is worth repeating. Folklore has it that Chetak coat had a blue tinge to it. That is why Maharana Pratap is  often referred  to as the “Rider of the Blue Horse”.

Mahrana Pratap SIngh, King of Mewar found his biggest rival in the then Emperor of India Jalal ud-din Muhammad Akbar. Akbar was the one because of whom Pratap’s father had to flee from Chittorgarh and establish a new empire in Udaipur. Many Rajput Chiefs had expressed their loyalty towards Akbar but not Maharana Pratap.

The animosity brought the troops of Akbar and Maharana face to face in the battle of Haldighati. Pratap’s forces were decisively outnumbered but Maharana Pratap stood strong riding his royal, fearless horse Chetak. WhenMaharana Pratap realized that the battle was slipping away from his hands, he charged the elephant of the appointed captain of Akbar’s troops, Raja Man Singh. Pratap made a frontal charge and his fearless horse Chetak reared high in the air and planted his hooves on the forehead of the elephant. Pratap threw his lance towards Man Singh but missed.

During this hustle one of the tusks of the elephant tore Chetak’s rear leg, crippling him. This was a pivotal moment in the battle. Maharana Pratap had to retreat .

Inspite of his fatal would, Chetak  ran for miles and miles, even jumping high and through a river to get his master to safety.  Once assured that his master was out of danger ,Chetak collapsed and let out his last breath.

Chetak’s heroic act of bravery and loyalty towards his master made everyone forget the defeat Maharana Pratap had to face during the battle. Instead, it is his  his death that  has been immortalized in the ballads of Rajasthan.

Moral : Bravery displayed in the face of challenges becomes immortalized.

Illustrated by Shruti Prabhu. Retold by Vinni Mishra