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

Bhoga-murti literally means ‘deity that gives happiness’.

The icons of Viṣnu are generally of four varieties:

  1. Bhogamurti - It is concerned with the attitude of happiness.
  2. Yogamurti - It is concerned with the attitude of meditation.
  3. Vīramurti - It is concerned with the attitude of heroism.
  4. Ābhicārikamurti - It is concerned with the attitude of exorcism.

Each one of these may again be sculptured in three possible postures:

  1. Sthānaka - Standing
  2. Āsīna - Seated
  3. Śayāna - Recumbent

Further, each variety has three subdivisions:

  1. Uttama - Superior
  2. Madhyama - Middling
  3. Adhama - Inferior

The bhogamurti of the sthānaka type is called ‘bhoga-sthānaka-murti’. This image has four hands. The two upper hands carry the cakra (discus) and śaṅkha (conch). The right lower hands exhibits the gesture of abhaya (protection) or varada (boon- giving). The left lower hand rests on the hip. The complexion is śyāma or dark blue. Srīdevi (Lakṣmi) and Bhudevī (Mother-earth) are shown as the consorts.

In the uttama variety, the deity is surrounded by several sages, celestial beings and attendants. In the madhyama and the adhama versions, the number of these subsidiary beings is gradually reduced.

In the bhogamurti of the āsīna type called ‘bhogāsanamurti’, the same description holds good. Viṣṇu is shown as seated on a splendid throne. In rare cases, he may be shown as seated on the Ananta or the thousand-hooded serpent.

In the bhogamurti of the śayāna type, called ‘bhoga-śayāna-murti’, the god is shown in a recumbent posture. One of the right hands supports the head and one of the left hands is stretched till the thigh. The śaṅkha (conch) and the cakra (discus) may be shown in the other two hands. Sometimes, they are shown independently, the two extra hands being absent. Either Śridevī (Lakṣmī) or both Śrīdevī and Bhudevī (Mother-earth) are shown near the feet. The four-faced Brahmā on the lotus emanating from the navel is another feature.


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

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