What is Indian Culture

The Indian culture is described as "Sa Prathama Sanskrati Vishvavara" the first and the supreme culture in the world. It is honored as a divine culture. Today, whenthe world is undergoing haywire transformations on cultural front and facing cultural diversion and adulteration the influence of occidental civilization andcommercialization has over shadowed the way of life of even those who vaunt for the great cultural heritage of India…., it has become more important to review theoriginal form and expansion of the Indian culture, analyze its foundation principles in scientific light and present in detail its different aspects, which dealwith the day to day life of people and which are useful for the righteous progress of the world.The core of Indian culture, as shaped by the revered Rishis, revolves around the principle of "Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam" treating the entire world as our own family,which reflects universality of serene love, altruism, sharing of responsibilities and caring for all beings….. The central theme of Indian cultural development has evolved from the Indian philosophy of continuity of life and realization of the soul as a manifestation of divine impulse. Successive refinement of human consciousness by elimination ofanimal instincts and evil tendencies of the mind and enlightenment of its inner cores was therefore given maximum importance by the Rishis. The system of shodassanskars was devised by them for this purpose. The shodas samskaras, performed at different stages of human life, aim at continuous refinement and escalation of the individual self. The methods ofperforming these samskaras and adoption of associated disciplines in personal and social life constitute an important component of Indian cultural system.It is a culture of this type which produces true saints, altruist social reformers, martyrs, great personalities, intellectuals, scientists and spiritual masters of thekinds of the Rishis, who, like angels, bestow the world with divine grace through their noble deeds and ascetic characters. The purity of intrinsic faith and arousal ofinner sentiments are regarded most important for the realization of divinity existing in the inner self. The methods of upasana prescribed under the Indian culturalprinciples lend excellent support in this direction. The source of aspirations and happiness and the ultimate core of sentiments the inner self too gets refined andcharged by the devotional practices of upasana and it experiences absolute peace and blissfulness.The principles pertaining to (i) ascetic control of mental tendencies; (ii) adoption of honesty, generosity, mutual trust, healthy cooperation, morality and integrity ofcharacter and deeds; (iii) altruist service; (iv) sincere fulfillment of responsibilities towards the family, society, nation and the world; (v) courageous attitude andendeavors to fight against injustice, immorality, exploitation, superstition, communalism, castism and similar kinds of negative tendencies and effects in thepersonal and social domains; and (vi) concrete efforts for healthy maintenance of the ecosystem and purification of the environment of life, etc are fundamental to thecreative practices propagated under the banner of Indian culture.How the above mentioned 'virtual idealism' could be naturally assimilated in the activities and behavioral transactions of daily life? This has been the focus of whatconstitutes the 'traditions' of the Indian culture.The word "culture" is a literal translation of the word "sanskrati" in Sanskrit language. According to Sanskrit grammar, the word "sanskrati" means that action,method or system which has (or which pertains to) virtuous tendencies….Restraining of the agile mind and cultivation of virtuous tendencies in it isemphasized in the Bharteeya Sanskrati (Indian Culture) because mind is the sole source of orientation of one's attitude, deeds and character. The subtle impulses ofconsciousness are expressed in the intellect, thoughts and sentiments via the medium of the four inner layers of mind namely, mana, buddhi, citta and ahamkara.Because of its sound footing on the in-depth knowledge of human psychology and science of spirituality, the Indian philosophy adequately deals with unlimitedexpansion of different aspects of human life including those at the most personal to those at the global levels. Because, Nature and every form of existence has also beentreated here as a manifestation of universal consciousness, the materialistic domain of the world and the nature, functions and activities of the gross body too fall withinthe consideration of this philosophy. The original structure and relevance of the Indian culture is therefore regarded as universal.The systems of varna and ashram prescribed by the Rishis are often subjected to the criticism of rational thinkers and intellectuals of the modern age. This is because, thepopular interpretations and the information available on these aspects of Indian culture indicates them as nurturing castism, social discrimination, evasion fromresponsibilities, etc. Param Poojya Gurudev Pandit Shriram Sharma Acharya has paid special attention to these important issues. He has cited excerpts from theoriginal scriptures and given authentic references and explanation of what is exactly meant by the terms Brahmin, Kshatriya, Vaishya and Shudra described as the fourvarnas. The fundamentalists, the orthodox scholars and the advocates of castism will not find any reasonable counter-argument to reject his interpretations andadept analysis.Gayatri the origin of all Vedas, Guru spiritual mentor, Ganga the holy Ganges, Gau (cow) and Geeta are the five fundamental elements which lie at the core of thedevelopment and practices of the Indian culture. It is through these roots that the stout tree of divine Indian culture had blossomed in the ancient times of yore and hasmaintained its 'greenery' age after age despite turbulent fluctuations in people's faith, convictions, cultural values and modes of living.This curriculum is designed to provide information on the life transforming aspects of Indian Culture and the constructive efforts inspired by the patron founders of YugNirman Mission, Shantikunj Haridwar for the revival of the divine Indian culture.

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