Culture is something that comprises the language, religion, ethnicity, dance, music, attire, cuisine or the way of living of people in a particular geographical region. It can have an essence of just one type of lifestyle or can be comprised of many cultures under one culture of a particular nation like we have in our country- India.
So what is Indian culture? Is it something that we have been told again and again by politically driven religious agendas or it is something beyond that? I think differently from what’s been in the society these days.
Without saying much I’ll start by saying that Indian culture is neither religion oriented nor extremely rigid unlike many other countries.
In India we come across cultures poles apart at a difference of every 100 kilometres or so. But at the same time we exist heartily with each other.
We have the culture of Hinduism which originated on the very land of India and at the same time we have the culture of Islam which originated far away on the land of Arab. We have Parsee populace and culture all the way from greater Iran in India and at the same time we have the beautiful villages of Punjab where Punjabi culture originated. Buddhism and Jainism embellished the unity in diversity notion of India. Not only this but Christianity also flourished in India. Portuguese populace and their culture can still be seen in Goa Kerala Tamil Nadu etc. We have so many languages so many dance forms so many cuisines at a distance of every few kilometre that it is distinct in its own. But one thing is there which is one and only. We, despite of the fact that we have so many cultures in different parts of our country coexist so heartily with each other that such an example of coexistence is almost impossible to find anywhere in the world. Different cultures of many parts of the world have commingled so well with the ancient Indian culture that today it’s impossible to imagine that they were ever absent here on our land. It’s difficult to think about Indian culture today by parting it from cultures that came to India many many centuries back.
The long and short or the gist of it is that we come across so many cultures in India in every state, union territory or city that is difficult even to just remember the different facets of each culture. The beauty of Indian culture is that it is not just a culture but is a confluence of cultures making it one of its own multifaceted culture which makes Indian culture different from the cultures all over the globe.
Hinduism is a vast religion and probably the oldest one on earth and since every religion has its own theory of birth or creation of the universe, it is apparent that the oldest religion with oldest mythology would probably have one as well. Though in Hinduism this theory is very vast and interesting and has many perspectives in accordance with many sects of Hinduism; there is one entity which is common among all the sects of Hinduism who is the creator of the universe whom we know as Lord Brahma or the creator.
It was the time when time itself was unborn and nothing-literally nothing-existed moving or static. The whole space was asleep and Lord Narayan was at the centre of it-resting on Anant Sheshnaag when from his naval(naabhi kamal), Lord Brahma was born. When Lord Brahma asked Lord Narayan about the cause of his birth then he was told that it is his duty to create a universe. Lord Brahma obeyed the Lord and obliged and hence the universe came into existence.
There is also a theory of Hiranyagarbha i.e. the golden egg or the golden womb. It is believed that when none existed, the supreme soul or brahman existed and then he created cosmic waters and established a seed in it which turned out to be a golden egg or Hiranyagarbha. The Super Soul entered it and then it broke into two giving birth to the creation of the universe and from the same cosmic golden egg was born Lord Brahma.
Now lets talk about the life of Lord Brahma and what we know about him.
Lord Brahma is actually believed to reside in Brahma lok where he lives with his consort goddess Brahmani or goddess Saraswati. He with his four heads has created four Vedas and his first creation was the four kumaras- Sanaka, Sanandana, Sanatan and Sanat who refused to lead the creation as they were completely engrossed in Lord Vishnu/Lord Narayan and were celibates. His life span is that of 100 ‘Brahma-years’ which is much more when compared with our 100 years. His few seconds involves many years for humans on earth.
The life span of Lord Brahma is 100 ‘Brahma-Years’. One day in the life of Brahma is called a Kalpa or 4.32 billion years. Every Kalpa creates 14 Manus(Manu is first male human created by Brahma for birth of humans on earth whose wife Satrupa is first female to give birth to humans on earth. They are like Adam & Eve of Hindu Mythology) one after the other, who in turn manifest and regulate this world’s 4 yugas(yugas=ages)-Satyug(golden age), Tretayug(silver age), Dwaparyug(bronze age), and Kaliyug(iron age in which we are living). At the end of it i.e., at the end of Brahma’s life span, the destruction by Lord Shiva takes place after which Lord Narayan again rests and Brahma gets dissolved in him.
So this is how this cycle takes place again and again and Brahma gets birth for the creation and gets dissolved in Lord Narayan at the end and this is how our universe comes into existence and then gets dissolved all over again with the dissolution of our creator-Lord Brahma.
Nostalgia is a gift. Memories are the best elements of our lives no matter what stage of life we are at, at present. Memories are the boxes or lanes in our minds in which we are never surrounded by despondency. No matter how good or bad the time was, memory of that time always turns out to be a tranquil one. That’s one point which makes memories the best part of our minds, our lives. In both the cases-good and bad-the memory that the time carves out is something that always makes us feel the present soothing. If the time was good it’s always soothing to think about it and cherish the memories germane to it. If present is as good or better comparatively, then the memory will make us feel good anyway. If present is gruesome, then past happy memories can take us to that time and may give us a mollifying effect.
In another case, if past was bad and present good- then it’s good to see how far you’ve come along. If present is gruesome you can see that if you have come a long way; you can do it again. In all the cases memories never make us feel bad (of course there are exceptions).
It’s all about how we see life. But it’s also a fact that no matter how good memories are.. if we are given a chance, we wouldn’t like to go back in time no matter how morbid craving we have to live those days again. Ask yourself and you’d love to believe that life is easy today and this is what is best for you. The technology, the facilities, the relationships- everything that we’ve got today is destined to be with us.
So it’s good to cherish memories but it’s always better to accept and live happily with the present as it is because God and nature has made it the way it is. Had it not been the case, we would always have the rewind buttons in our lives.
Have fun and be happy!!!