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

Kalaśa literally means ‘that which sounds when filling with water’. The word ‘kalaśa’ is commonly used in two senses:

  1. A ceremonially established water pot
  2. Finial of a temple

Kalaśa, water pot[edit]


The waterpot kalaśa is used in many rituals. It is considered as a replica of the amṛtakalaśa, the celestial pot prepared by Viśvakarma[1] at the time of churning the ocean to hold the amṛta or nectar.

Making & Dimensions[edit]

A kalaśa may be made of gold, silver, copper or even clay. The dimensions recommended are:

  • Maximum circumference: 101 cm (40 inches)
  • Diameter of mouth: 16 cm (6.4 inches)
  • Height: 32 cm (12.8 inches)


It should be filled with water. Other things that may be put inside it are:

  • Precious stones
  • Flowers
  • Fruits
  • Herbs

Deities Presiding in a Kalaśa[edit]

The kalaśa is regarded as a composite divinity. The deities preside in each of it's part. They are:

  1. Brahmā - mouth
  2. Rudra - neck
  3. Viṣṇu - bottom portion
  4. Devī - middle portion

It is sometimes described as containing all the seven seas, the seven islands, the planets and the stars in it's belly. It is the replica of the whole universe.

Types of Kalaśas[edit]

Nine varieties of the kalaśas are also mentioned in some works. Eight are arranged in the eight directions and the ninth which is called as ‘indriyaghna,’ with five mouths, is kept in the center during certain rituals. Establishment of a kalaśa is a must in the Durgāpujā. The Kālikāpurāna[2] recommends that all the gods should be worshiped in kalaśas only.

Kalaśa, the Finial[edit]

It is an important part of the superstructure over the sanctum of a temple. It may be made of copper or silver or gold. Inside it a ‘suvarṇapuruṣa’[3] is installed with an elaborate ritual known as ‘hṛdayavarṇakavidhi’.


  1. Viśvakarma was the architect of the gods.
  2. Kālikāpurāna chapter 87
  3. Suvarṇapuruṣa means a golden person.
  • The Concise Encyclopedia of Hinduism, Swami Harshananda, Ram Krishna Math, Bangalore