India: traditions and customs
Since 2000 BC, there were highly developed settlements in India. This civilization had strong ties with neighbors from the west, namely, with the inhabitants of Mesopotamia. But after about 500 years there was an invasion of nomads, which led to a mixture of culture, life and language. The result was the early Indian civilization. The process of conquest lasted a very long time. By the standards of archaeologists, about a few centuries. Already in the 3rd century BC. er almost all of India was united under the leadership of King Ashoka. But for a long time, alas, it did not last. After the death of the king, the state fell apart. During the great march of Alexander the Great, India became invincible for him. In the Middle Ages, the country was just a gold mine for Western invaders. Under the influence of the above, the traditions and customs of India were born.
India: the history of the formation of traditions
It was from those times that the traditions that were familiar to Indians today began to take shape. Religion, the culture of invaders from the west and the customs of the emperors had a great influence on them.Today, the entire population of India adheres to a variety of customs that differ from each other.
It is the birthplace of various world religions, including Buddhism, Jainism, Sikhism. All of them had a significant impact on the cultural traditions of India. A special place in the history of India and traditions is occupied by the neighboring peoples: Persians, Turks, Arabs.
Despite some fragmentation, the country still has its own history, which brings together all the states and territories.
The traditions of the peoples of India are very diverse, which attracts millions of tourists from all over the world. Each country, of course, has its own customs, which should be followed. It is better to cognize the state gradually, step by step, discovering new and interesting features of India. Buddhism and the philosophy of the Hindus, who advocate the rejection of any violence, had a great influence on the formation of national customs. Far back to the times of our era, Orthodox rulers revived Buddhism.
India: cultural differences
Since antiquity, the Indian state flourished. To this day, it is famous for making carpets, brocade and silk fabrics, chased products and weapons.Many European travelers dreamed of visiting the mysterious country of corrals, pearls, emeralds, gold and diamonds. Religion has become almost the main factor in the formation of the state’s population. All sorts of areas of art of the country, one way or another, have a close relationship with religious philosophy.
India’s business cards were no exception: traditions also left their mark on them. Every year, temples and shrines attract hundreds of thousands of tourists from all over the world. And what can we say about palaces, mosques and temple complexes.
Even dancing and music were born in temples. They have become a real reference book that literally conveys the whole meaning of traditions in the smallest nuances. National cuisine has not been without the intervention of religion. The north is mainly inhabited by Muslim peoples who eat meat. South of the country is inhabited by Indians, preferring vegetarianism.
Augustus is known for the holiday, which is dedicated to the birth of the god Krishna, and autumn is Ram Leela, where they honor the god Ram. The festival of lights is also celebrated in autumn, its name is Diwali.
Holidays on a national scale well reflect which traditions of India are devoted to the worship of various deities, and which to agriculture. Celebrates Independence Day and Republic Day.With particular enthusiasm, residents celebrate the Holi festival. It is well known for drenching water containing paint and sprinkling with colored powders.
Culture of behavior
The sermons of the Indians say that the main purpose in life is to curb their feelings. Ancient scrolls and the present firm laws of culture call on Hindus to be cordial in communication, to be good-natured and friendly with those around them and children, and by all means restrain displays of anger and irritation. Not welcome manifestations of coquettishness, public manifestations of affection (hugging and kissing), as well as antics. In some cases, the manifestation of feelings can be prosecuted. All restraint in the daily life of Indians has been forming for centuries, but the inhabitants have not lost their naturalness in their lives.
Adherents of Hinduism prohibit drinking alcohol. In restaurants you will not find spirits, but some bars allow you to bring alcohol with you. On Fridays, a single dry law, at this time to get alcoholic beverages is almost impossible.
The main traditions of India
Before you visit the most fabulous and magical country, you should take a closer look at its traditions and customs.In India, religion and traditions are closely related, so it will not be very pleasant to experience discomfort while being on the street or indoors, from wrong actions on your part. No handshakes here. Of course, sometimes men can express this gesture friendliness. There is a whole ritual of greeting: the two join the palms together, then raise them to the chin and nod, saying the greeting word "namaste." Indians have the left hand is considered unclean, so if you have a desire to try something to taste, then you need to take only the right hand.
Visiting sacred sites is also required to adhere to certain traditions and customs. You need to remove your shoes before crossing the threshold of the temple. You should not have leather products. Lestovo is considered a spiritual thing that should not be shown to strangers, so you should keep them inconspicuous.
In temples you should behave accordingly. Women are supposed to wear clothes covering their shoulders and head. Taking photos in the temple is strictly prohibited, but under certain circumstances permission may be obtained. Sacred places and buildings are usually bypassed on the left side.In such places it is forbidden to appear in transparent and tight dresses and costumes.
As for women, they are not allowed to take liberties with the opposite sex. Palms are forbidden to put on the shoulders of other people, as well as point at someone with a finger. Gestures and behavior are special manifestations of communication among Hindus. Leg, pointing not to the side of the interlocutor, is considered a manifestation of disrespect. As mentioned above, all manifestation of emotions in society is prohibited. Various manifestations of anger, care, discontent and other things are not welcome, especially in public places. Holding hands is allowed only for an engaged couple.
Unusual traditions of India
Russian man rituals conducted by the Indians, plunged into shock. For example, for several centuries there has been a tradition to drop babies under 11 months from the roof of the temple in the city of Solapur. If you believe, then it brings the newborn health and strength. By the way, throughout the time, no child was hurt.
Of particular interest is the holiday Taypus. It symbolizes the victory over evil spirits, which is plunged with a spear.What is unusual about this is that about 2 million Indians every year, celebrating this holiday, pierce various parts of the body. A kind of piercing is done with the aid of sharp objects at hand. Pins, spades, spears - all this goes into business.
An important event for Hindus, as, in general, and for all, is the wedding. Marriage is blessed only by the parents of the groom, only the fate of the beloveds depends entirely on this. The choice of the bride is not the way we are used to. Parents are looking for a bride for their child, the child, for the choice has been made since childhood. Then they discuss it with the girl’s parents, and then there is a series of studies that will take horoscopes, which supposedly may favor the union of the young, or maybe not at all. The girl herself does not have any privileges regarding choice, she should simply obey the word of the parents.
Everyone knows such a decoration as a red dot on the forehead. Her real name is bindi. This symbolizes the third eye of the deity Shiva, which represents the secret wisdom. By tradition, red dots were found only among married women, but these days it has become a stylish, but an ordinary decoration.
At the wedding should be attended by about 700-800 people who need to provide overnight stay and food. Wife clothe in red robes. Hindus conduct wedding ceremonies only in one period. It starts in December and intermittently lasts until March.
Traditions of ancient India survived to this day. The funeral ceremony at the Indians are held on the banks of the sacred river Ganges. Almost the entire population of India professes orthodox Hinduism. Therefore, all the dead are cremated, and after their dust flutters over the Ganges. At the funeral, all come in white, and no one cries. In some villages, the ritual of self-immolation of a woman who became a widow has been preserved. Before that, she puts on her holiday outfit, washes her hands in the waters of the river and dissolves her hair. This tradition has been considered a spiritual exaltation.
Attitude towards animals
Everyone has long known that a cow is considered a sacred animal by the Hindus. They do not eat beef. These animals can be found almost everywhere. They walk around the streets of cities and villages without restrictions. Those who wish to visit India should be careful with the animal, because you can put him in jail for his insult or action against the cow.
Beautiful and colorful peacocks became the pride of the people of India.In the morning there may be a unique opportunity to hear their fabulous singing.
Many sacred sites and temples were erected in honor of monkeys. Even in ancient times here they were considered sacred animals. The animals, though playful, should be treated with them with care, because in case of dissatisfaction the animal can cause pain. If you meet them on your way, you can treat them with pleasure. Sometimes they even pester passersby themselves in order to get a tidbit of something from their hands.
In India, culture and traditions have also influenced the images of the robes of the population of this country. Important were the climate, urban and rural structure, geography. Depending on the region, traditional clothing changes its appearance. Sewn clothing is very common throughout the territory, especially bloomers with dupatta (long scarf, thrown over the shoulder) or salwar (long dress). There are also sewn clothing options for men, such as pajamas, European-style pants, and shirts. In the centers of populous cities there are people dressed in things that are familiar to us.The most popular in India are draped robes like sarees for women or lungi and dhoti for men.
Women have a perfect sense of beauty and fashion. They learned how to perfectly match the makeup with traditional decorations. For such great holidays as weddings, they wear dresses of motley colors. Many outfits have ornaments of gold and silver and other precious stones and metals.
Since Indian etiquette prohibits the appearance in public places with bare parts of the body, most of the clothes are made of cotton, which is an excellent solution in such a hot climate. Many residents wear sandals because of their advantage over a hot and at the same time rainy climate.
India is famous for its folk dances, which have always experienced a warm and exciting attitude. Archaeologists managed to find two ancient works, which are already about 2000 years old. "Science of Dance" and "Reflection of Gesture" - this is how their names are translated into Russian.
Many people believe that the art of Indian dance is a self-expression of inner beauty and the presence of the divine in man.Each facial expression is an emotion, each movement seeks to convey an idea. Indian traditional dance is an honed art that does not give the right to make a mistake.
In total there are 8 classical forms of Indian dance, which has elements of mythology. All of them are recognized by the National Academy of Dance, Music and Drama of India. Some regions have sustainable forms of folk dance traditions that take roots from official ones. If you have the opportunity to see these dances with your own eyes, do not miss it.
Most recently, the program has begun to gain popularity for conducting international dances in major cities. New forms of Indian dance, flowing into the classics, will allow the viewer to see stories from the Bible.
Early Indian painting is considered to be the cave paintings of primitive times. Ancient, as well as temple painting, speaks about love to naturalism. Religions such as Buddhism, Hinduism and Jainism became the basis of medieval painting. The representative of the classical classical painting of the Middle Ages became Raja Ravi Varma.
The most famous way of applying ornament, especially in South India, is rangoli.It is often found on the doorsteps of Indians.
In the art of India, there are many outstanding genres. These include Mongolian, Rajput, Mysore and others. There are several such paintings in the Jahangir Gallery of Art in Mumbai.
The development of the language in India is divided into three periods: the old, middle and modern. Sanskrit is the classic form of the old Indo-Aryan language. If we translate this word, we will get such words as refined, correct, cultural. Based on census data for 2001, it follows that the most used language in India is Hindi. Throughout history, there was no direct merger of the people of the Indians with other Asian nations. All cause isolation due to the Himalayas. Studies have confirmed this. According to scientists, the last 5,000 years the Himalayas have blocked the paths of merging. This is proved by the languages through which the inhabitants of the northern parts of the country communicate.
The most famous ancient epics of India are the Ramayana and the Mahabharata. The first contains about 24,000 poems written in 7 books, and about 500 Kanto, which tells the story of the god-savior Rama.According to beliefs, his wife Sati was abducted by a demon named Ravana. It was this epic that formed the basis of the role of dharma (a set of certain rules and laws, thanks to which, as Hindus believe, the order of the whole Universe is maintained) as the main ideal of the power of life of every Hindu.
The texts of the Mahabharata date back to 400 BC. er Presumably they reached their final form in the 4th century AD. er
Both works have poems written in Tamil. These are Manimekalay, Chewak Chintamani and Valayapathi.
It is not possible to briefly describe the traditions of India, because this is a rather multifaceted and extraordinary country that surprises and fascinates at the same time.