Indian Culture is an ancient and one of the most popular cultures in the world. India is very well known for its rich cultural heritage which is a combination of customs, traditions, lifestyle, religion, languages, rituals, cuisine, etc. It is a culture of exuberant diversity.
Western Culture is referred to as the modern and advanced culture in the world. The main pillars of the western culture are capitalism, individualism, rights, ethical values, etc. Here in Western culture, most people give more importance to their wants, needs, desires, and happiness. They are busy in doing their own business.
But with each passing day, India is becoming more modern and technologically advanced.
Is Indian culture and modernism two contradictory terms?
Well a major population of our country has set a wrong perception about this.
Adopting good practices of any culture is always fruitful.
And a majority of population follow western culture because their neighbors, friends or relatives are following. I won’t say that western culture isn’t good.it is definitely but appreciating others culture and berating ours is something wrong.
Many aspects of Indian culture and traditions are quite scientific which isn’t known to vast public. Here are some of those:
1. Joining Both Palms Together to Greet
In Indian culture, people greet each other by joining their palms – termed as “Namaskar.” The general reason behind this tradition is that greeting by joining both the palms means respect. However, scientifically speaking, joining both hands ensures joining the tips of all the fingers together; which are denoted to the pressure points of eyes, ears, and mind. Pressing them together is said to activate the pressure points which helps us remember that person for a long time.
2. Wearing Toe Ring
Wearing toe rings is not just the significance of married women but there is scientific reason behind it. Normally toe rings are worn on the second toe. A particular nerve from the second toe connects the uterus and passes to heart. Wearing toe ring on this finger strengthens the uterus. It will keep menstrual cycle regularized. As silver is a good conductor, it also absorbs polar energies from the earth and passes it to the body.
3. Throwing Coins into Rivers
The general perception for this act is that it brings Good Luck. However, scientifically , in the ancient times, most of the currency used was made of copper unlike the stainless-steel used today. Copper is a vital metal which is very useful to the human body. Throwing coins in the river was one way it was ensured we intake sufficient copper as part of the water as rivers were the only source of drinking water. Making it a custom ensured that all of us follow the practice.
4. Applying Tilak/Kumkum On the Forehead
On the forehead, between the two eyebrows, is a spot that is considered as a major nerve point in human body. The Tilak is believed to prevent the loss of “energy”, the red ‘Kumkum’ between the eyebrows is said to retain energy in the human body and control the various levels of concentration. While applying Kumkum the points on the mid-brow region and Adnya-chakra is automatically pressed. This also facilitates the blood supply to the face muscles.
5. Bells in temples
People who are visiting the temple should and would ring the bells before entering the inner sanctum (Garbhagudi or Garbha Gruha or womb-chamber) where the main idol is placed. According general perception, the bell is used to give sound for keeping evil forces away and the ring of the bell is pleasant to God. However, the scientific reason behind bells is that their ring clears our mind and helps us stay sharp and keep our full concentration on devotional purpose. These bells are made in such a way that when they produce a sound it creates a unity in our brains. The moment we ring the bell, it produces a sharp and enduring sound which lasts for minimum of 7 seconds in echo mode. The duration of echo is good enough to activate all the seven healing centers in our body.
6. Why We Start with Spice & End with Sweet:
Our ancestors have stressed on the fact that our meals should be started off with something spicy and sweet dishes should be taken towards the end. The significance of this eating practice is that while spicy things activate the digestive juices and acids and ensure that the digestion process goes on smoothly and efficiently, sweets or carbohydrates pulls down the digestive process. Hence, sweets were always recommended to be taken as a last item.
7. Why Do We Applying Mehendi/Henna on The Hand and Feet
Besides lending colour to the hands, mehendi is a very powerful medicinal herb.It cools the body and keeps the nerves from becoming tense. This is the reason why mehndi is applied on the hands and feet, which house nerve endings in the body.
8. Sitting on The Floor & Eating
This tradition is not just about sitting on floor and eating, it is, sitting in the “Sukhasan” position and then eating. Sukhasan is the position we normally use for Yoga asanas. It helps in digestion.
9.Why You Should Not To Sleep With Your Head Towards North
Myth is that it invites ghost or death but scientifically it is because human body has its own magnetic field (Also known as hearts magnetic field, because the flow of blood) and Earth is a giant magnet. When we sleep with head towards north, our body’s magnetic field become completely asymmetrical to the Earth’s Magnetic field. That cause problems related to blood pressure and our heart needs to work harder in order to overcome this asymmetry of Magnetic fields.
The scientific reason behind fasting is found in Ayurveda.This ancient Indian medical system points out correctly that the basic cause of many diseases is the accumulation of toxic materials in the digestive system. Regular cleansing of toxic materials keeps one healthy. By fasting, the digestive organs get rest and all body mechanisms are cleansed and corrected. A complete fast is good for heath and occasional intake of warm lemon juice during the period of fasting prevents the flatulence.
People all around the world want a good and healthy lifestyle. Hence, they adopt different practices of different culture to lead a quality life. So, while adopting the good practices of the west ,we should also not leave behind the good practices of our culture.
Throwing coin I did not know…good one!