Meaning of Namaste

Namaste is a popular greeting in India, Nepal and countries where Hindu population are in large numbers. Like Arabic ‘Salam Aleikum’ or Spanish ‘Adios’, ‘Namaste’ crosses the boundaries of language and region. Irrespective of your location inside India or Nepal, … Read more

Guide to Diwali – The Indian festival of lights

Rangoli

If you are in India right now then you are going to see the best fireworks you have ever seen. Every single household in India will be lighting clay lamps and cracking fireworks. Here’s a brief guide to the festival of Diwali.

Diwali (also known as Deepavali) as it is known to the world is the Hindu festival of lights. It is a five day festival but the most important is the day when fireworks are displayed. Generally, it falls between mid October to early November every year. The 2014 Diwali falls on the Thursday 23rd of October. The date is dictated by the Indian lunar calendar. Many a times it coincides with Guy Fawkes Night (5th of November) of Great Britain.

Read moreGuide to Diwali – The Indian festival of lights

India for Kids

All about India

Are you travelling to India with your kids? If yes then why not give them something to read about India before you go? This way they will get to know India better! Even better give them something to listen. My book … Read more

International Yoga Day: Simple yoga techniques for travellers

International Yoga Day

Yoga is huge in India. You think of an ailment and there is a yoga posture for it. But that does mean that you have to do yoga just because you are ill – you just do it. The main aim of yoga is to become one with God by doing exercises related to the Hindu Samkhya philosophy (one of the six systems of doctrine held by the Hindus You can read more about it in my book – Hinduism Made Easy: Hindu Religion, Philosophy and Concepts).  It was in the 1980s that yoga became popular as a system of physical exercises across the Western world. In recent years, yoga has become extremely popular in India thanks to one man called Baba Ramdev. He actually single-handedly made some yoga postures (mentioned below) a household name.

Read moreInternational Yoga Day: Simple yoga techniques for travellers

Burning dead bodies at the city of Varanasi

Hindu Cremation Banaras

The city of Varanasi or Banaras (or Kashi) as most Indians know it, is one of the holiest cities of India. It is here you will find Hinduism in its raw form. Many foreign tourists visit Banaras in large numbers to seek of spirituality. I have spent large parts of my childhood growing up in Banaras. I have seen tourists come to this place from all over India and the world. Indians come here to bathe in the holy river Ganges while foreign tourists come here to get to know about the Hindu religion. Some foreign tourists come here just to consume marijuana, one of the few places in India where you can drink bhang lassi (shake) on the streets.

Read moreBurning dead bodies at the city of Varanasi

Diwali, the festival of lights – Top places to celebrate Diwali

Diwali fireworks

In the past, I have mentioned numerous reasons to visit India. But it seems as if I have forgotten to mention Diwali. Thanks to the Indian Diaspora, Diwali is being celebrated around the world and people all over the globe are getting to know about this amazing Indian festival. But why not come to India to witness this amazing festival – the place where it all started.

Read moreDiwali, the festival of lights – Top places to celebrate Diwali