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

Aṣṭamaṅgalas literally means ‘eight objects of auspiciousness’.

Traditions have always considered certain objects and living beings as ‘maṅgala’ or auspicious. Coming across them by chance, seeing them, receiving them as gifts, giving them as gifts or honoring them—all these (depending upon the type of object) have been deemed to produce auspiciousness.

‘Aṣṭamañgala’ is a term often used in the religious works to indicate eight such objects of auspiciousness, though there is no unanimity among the lists given. These objects may be necessary on important occasions as the coronation of a king, or they may be depicted as motifs in architecture. In a few rare cases as in a vrata (religious vow) they represent the objects to be gifted.

There is a varied list of aṣṭamañgalas as per the different scriptures. They are mentioned below :

The common aṣṭamañgalas are :

  1. Lion
  2. Bull
  3. Serpent
  4. Elephant
  5. Pitcher
  6. Cāmara (cauri made of the bushy hairs of a yak’s tail)
  7. Hand-fan
  8. Flag
  9. Trumpet
  10. Drum
  11. Lamp

As per another list, they are :

  1. A brāhmaṇa
  2. Cow
  3. Fire
  4. Gold
  5. Ghee (butter-oil)
  6. The sun
  7. Water
  8. King

Other objects included in such lists (keeping of course, the total number always eight) are :

  1. Fruits
  2. Corns
  3. Book
  4. Mirror
  5. Conch
  6. The svastika sign
  7. White umbrella
  8. A pair of fish
  9. Head of a horse
  10. Wheel
  11. Lotus
  12. Throne


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