Culture

The beliefs and cult of Gurungs caste in Nepal

Gurung Dharma: shamanic practices and Gurung beliefs

Gurung Dharma, or the Gurung shamanic traditions … … are now considered – also by its supporters – as an ancient system of shamanic beliefs, which is only a remnant of the former powerful cult. Gurung beliefs The Gurongs – in their language – Tamu-mae – combine practical everyday life with rich cosmology, inhabited by innumerable good and evil spirits….

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Nepali calendar and the way it works.

Nepali calendar – Bikram Sambat

The Nepali calendar includes the Hindu calendar Bikram Sambat (Vikram Samvat) and the days of the week, days of the month and anniversaries of the Gregorian calendar. The Nepalese calendar, Nepali Patro – also called Nepali Bikram Sambat, in short BS – means all national holidays, cultural and religious festivals of all ethnic groups of Nepal. It includes mainly Dashain,…

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Timal Jatra: great buddhist festival

Tamangs believe that the tradition of celebrating Temal Jatra was initiated 300 years ago by King Rhinjen Dorje Bal. According to historical data, it is believed that in the late Middle Ages, when Nepal was divided into many small states like Baisi (a group of 22 states) and Chaubisi (a group of 24 states) in the present province 3 –…

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2145 – Year of the Earth Dog: Tibetan calendar

The tradition of the Losar festival dates back to prehistoric pre-Buddhist times in Tibet. When Tibetans traditionally practiced the Bon shamanic tradition, a festival was organized every winter in which people offered innumerable incense to local spirits and deities. This tradition has remained until today as the annual New Year’s Buddhist festival. Tibetan calendar – according to which the Buddhist…

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Why Indian people paint eyes of their children

Perhaps you are in shock seeing,  for the first time, a small child with intensely painted eyes. However, it has been very common in Hindu culture for a long time. Also today, many mothers, in India, Nepal, and in the Middle East, paint their childrens eyes with kayalem – an Indian equivalent fof eye-liner – obtained from oil, herbs and…

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Nepalese

Hindu castes are an important element of the Nepalese community, although there are some gaps in this system. Bahuns differently Brahmins, are sitting on top of this mountain. They can be government employees, landowners or farmers. As the next, there are Chhetri who usually serve as soldiers. The homeland of both ethnic groups are the hills of western Nepal, but…

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Ghode Jatra: Horse Racing Day, Kathmandu

Ghode Jatra, or the Horse Racing Day According to the tradition, on this day is celebrated the defeat of Tundi, a demon who once lived in a meadow known today as Tundikhel. After his death he was trampled under the hooves of dancing horses. It is said that the Ghode Jatra festival was initiated to make sure that his spirit is…

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Adi Shankaracharya united the country with the help of philosophy, poetry and faith

In the picture above – the Temple in Kaladi, the birthplace of Saint Adi Shankaracharya  „Jagat mithya, brahma satyam” जगत मिथ्या, ब्रह्मा सत्यम Means that the world we experience, including tangible scientific conclusions, are essentially illusory. The only original truth that is independent of the mind is brahma – translated as soul, consciousness, language or infinite, eternal, unconditioned mind. Those…

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Brahmins and Chhetri – the highest caste in Nepal

The highest caste was always Brahmins, holding positions of priests and teachers in the Hindu community. It is believed that in the twelfth century, during the Islamic invasion in India, Brahmins – Brahmans – emigrated to the western hills of Nepal. There they encountered a Khas caste, people of a Brahmin-like culture, who in the caste order never found themselves…

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Newari: native people of Kathmandu

The Newaries are originall residents of the Kathmandu Valley and the surrounding districts. It can not be said, however, that the population of the Newar is a tribal population of a particular race with simple ethnic roots, such as Magar, Gurung or Kiranti. Basically, it can be stated that the Newari people are the cross between Indians (Arya) and Tibetans…

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A wedding in the Hindu tradition – Goa

Here is the story of the wedding ceremony of the parents of our friend, interspersed with comments and additions regarding the Hindu wedding tradition. My dads name is Padurag Shankar Gookar. He has three brothers and four sisters, they lived in a large house in Kolam. Both our families – dads and moms – come from the Chhetree caste, in…

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Hindu caste system

In the ancient system of Hindu Varna System caste – हिन्दू वर्ण व्यवस्था … … people were qualified to one of the castes according to their personal qualities, behavior, employment and degree of spiritual development. Kshatriya were warriors, soldiers and also held positions in the management group. All kings, ministers and soldiers were given the title ‘Kshatriya’. When Varna System…

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The meaning of Bauddhanath stupa

From an air view, the Bauddhanath stupa looks like a giant mandala … means – diagram of Buddhist cosmology. Four Buddhas set the main directions of the world, the fifth – Vairochana – sits in the middle. These five Buddhas also embody the five elements – earth, water, fire, air and ether – represented in the elements of the stupa….

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Kathmandu, Stupa Bauddhanath: history and legend

The Boudhanath stupa is located about 7 km northeast of Thamel – Kathmandu city center, near the ancient trade route leading from Tibet. The stupa is 44 meters high, the stupa dome is about 7 meters in diameter. The area of the stupa is approximately 6,756 square meters. Bauddhanath is one of the largest and most significant Buddhist objects in…

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Nepal: festival Holi – Phagu Purnima

Fagu Purnima or Holi is a Hindu festival celebrated during the full moon … … at the end of the Nepalese Falgun month according to the Bikram Sambat calendar. In the southern region of Nepal, Terai, people are celebrating Holi a day later in relation to Holi celebrated in the Kathmandu Valley and in the mountainous regions of Nepal. Holi…

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Tulsi – holy basil

Tulsi contains strong antioxidants, has antibacterial, antiviral, antidiabetic, antimalarial, antiallergic, adaptogenic and immune properties, and also gives the beverage a refreshing but delicate taste. The plant shows great variation depending on the type of soil, rainfall and the place where it grows. The growing environment affects the size of the herb, its strength, and medical efficiency. Tulasi has a sweet-sharp…

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They are not deities or gods

Before the advent of Abraham religion, the concept of GOD – as such, in the Abrahamist understanding – did not exist. Although we are used to the fact that various Eastern Asian figures in polytheistic cultures presented by gold or copper figures, statues, and monuments or wall drawings in Hindu temples are called deities or gods. But this is a…

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Women of Nepal: Portraits

It happened to be Lhosar, Tibetan New Year and while coming back from our walk to Kopan Monastery we took pictures of women.  Maybe Nepalese look similar but different casts have their own looks. Each woman has her own kind of beauty. Here I’m going to show it. And here are more pictures. New Year in Kopan Monastery in Nepal Tibetan New Year…

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Baudha and Budhanilkantha: Tamang region

A week ago we moved to another region. We live now in a rented flat in the Baudha region of Kathmandu – near the Boudhanath stupa – where is located the region of native residents of Kathmandu – Tamang. Traditionally, the people of Tamang adhere to Mahayana Buddhism. The sounds of the daily morning puja – mainly, to this day, bells…

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Sonam Losar: Tibetan New Year in Baudha, Kathmandu

Sonam Losar falls yearly on various dates – usually falls on the second, sometimes the third full moon after the winter solstice – in the Bikram Sambat calendar. This calendar is an ancient Tibetan-Chinese lunar calendar. So Sonam Lhosar falls the next day after the new moon of the month, Magh – on the day called Magh Sukla Pratipada. Sonam…

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To Kopan Monastery and Lhosar – Tibetan New Year

17th February we went on a walk to Kopan Monastery. From our house, it looks like on the other side of a city. We asked the owner of our flat, how many kilometers were between us and the Monastery. He told us that only 2 kilometers, we were quite surprised, as you can imagine. It so happened that the day we…

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Nepali spirit: culture of Shivalinga

According to the Hindu cult, the puja for Shiva is made every morning and evening. The offerings are made of what brings a good impression in the cold region of the Himalayan foothills – light, clean water, the smell of incense, flowers, fire, and delicacies. The lingam – Shiva’s symbol – is commonly worshiped as a source of power and…

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Culture of Bauls

The culture of Western Bengal in its natural meaning is first of all the creation of Bauls, mystics so old that one can find their connection with not only religions but also the sciences that are commonly called esoteric. It seems that the whole ancient Asiatic culture originates or is interconnected with this culture of ancient travelers. And the most interesting…

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Katmandu: Kopan Monastery

Many of us have a very idealistic idea of monasteries, thinking of some high things. In fact, everything is much simpler. The monastery is principally a school. But what they study and who teaches in this school is already a question of the quality of education and the matter of every educational institution. What do the monks learn in the…

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Kolam – Rangoli

 Kolam is most known in south India, Nepal, and few other Asian countries. While walking through the village streets of Tamil Nadu, it is hard not to see the drawings on the ground. They are made of rice flour, chalk powder, rock powder or colored powders. The making of such a kolams is widely practiced by women of South India. In…

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Pongal – harvest festival

Pongal is celebrated in south India mostly in Tamil Nadu. The word Pongal itself means “boiling over” or “spilling over” (of milk and rice) in Tamil, signifying abundance and prosperity. Pongal is usually held from January 13–16 in the Gregorian calendar i.e. from the last day of the Tamil month Maargazhi to the third day of Thai. It is festival that brings respite to the…

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Navrati Festival

This year it started September 21 and will end on September 29 Navratri–or the nine sacred days–mark the most auspicious days of the lunar calendar according to Hinduism. Celebrated with fervour and festivity all over India, and every Hindu community the world over, these nine days are dedicated solely to Maa Durga (goddess Durga) and her nine avatars. The prominent story…

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Buddha Purnima – Birthday of Buddha

The birthday of the historical Buddha Shakyamuni Gautama falls in full moon in the month of May. Every year in early May, sometimes at the end of April is held in Nepal Buddha Purnima, otherwise Buddha Jayanti, commonly known in other Buddhist countries Wessaka. This year it fell on 13th May. So we went from our mountain homestay in Methlang…

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Holi

Celebrated 12th and 13th March, 2017 Holi is a Hindu spring festival celebrated in India and Nepal, also known as the “festival of colours” or the “festival of love”. The festival signifies the victory of good over evil, the arrival of spring, end of winter, and for many people it means to meet others, play and laugh, forget and forgive, and repair…

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