Colonial Discourse and the Suffering of Indian American Children Book Cover.webp

In this book, we analyze the psycho-social consequences faced by Indian American children after exposure to the school textbook discourse on Hinduism and ancient India. We demonstrate that there is an intimate connection—an almost exact correspondence—between James Mill’s colonial-racist discourse (Mill was the head of the British East India Company) and the current school textbook discourse. This racist discourse, camouflaged under the cover of political correctness, produces the same psychological impacts on Indian American children that racism typically causes: shame, inferiority, embarrassment, identity confusion, assimilation, and a phenomenon akin to racelessness, where children dissociate from the traditions and culture of their ancestors.

This book is the result of four years of rigorous research and academic peer-review, reflecting our ongoing commitment at Hindupedia to challenge the representation of Hindu Dharma within academia.


From Hindupedia, the Hindu Encyclopedia

By Swami Harshananda

Āpta-vākya literally means ‘the statement of a trustworthy person’.

The āstika-darśanas or systems of philosophy that accept the authority of the Vedas, have given the highest place to śabda-pramāṇa (scriptural testimony), also called āgama (authentic word handed down by tradition) and āpta-vākya (statement of a trustworthy person).

It is impossible to obtain all knowledge through direct perception since the range of the organs of perception is limited. Nor can inference be of much help since it is based on previous experiences which again are based on direct perception. At some stage, faith in the word, spoken or heard or read, has got to be resorted to.

In fact the knowledge gained thus is enormous. Even the day-to-day life becomes impossible without believing in the authenticity of the spoken or written word. Of course, it goes without saying that the person through whom such knowledge comes, must be trustworthy and that he should have based his findings on authentic experience or sources.

Coming to things divine, since they pertain to areas of super-sensuous experience, only rṣis of the highest spiritual calibre can be the guides and the mentors. The scriptures, which are revelations handed down through them, are the highest class of āpta-vākya literature.


  • The Concise Encyclopedia of Hinduism, Swami Harshananda, Ram Krishna Math, Bangalore

Contributors to this article

Explore Other Articles