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

Mahāśānti literally means ‘the great propitiatory rite’.

When problems, troubles and difficulties arise beyond human efforts and capacities to get redemption, human beings opt to take to religious or divine remedies. Śāntis or propitiating rites belong to this class. Mahāśānti is one such rite prescribed in some ancient works like the Sāñkhāyana Grhyasutras.[1]

Need of Mahāśānti[edit]

Mahāśānti is performed for general well being, when mishaps such as the following occur like :

  • Fall of meteors
  • Before the coronation of a king
  • Before the king starts on an invasion
  • Birth of a baby under an inauspicious star
  • Falling down of holy objects like the umbrella of a deity in procession
  • Costly things are lost
  • During eclipses

Observances of Mahāśānti[edit]

The peculiarities of Mahāśānti are:

  • It is generally done on a specially raised platform wherein there will be an agnikuṇḍa (fire place) and also places for kalaśas to be established.
  • Mostly Ṛgvedic mantras are recited during the ceremonies.
  • A homa is also performed.
  • The yajamāna, main performer, takes a bath at the end.
  • The śāntijala, holy water used in the rite, is sprinkled over him by the priests who are then suitably rewarded.


  1. Sāñkhāyana Grhyasutras 5.11
  • The Concise Encyclopedia of Hinduism, Swami Harshananda, Ram Krishna Math, Bangalore