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India is about 1/3 the size of the United States, India is the seventh largest country in the world, the second most populous country in the world. ● ● India is the largest democracy in the world. ● ● The Kumbh Mela (or Grand Pitcher Festival) is a huge Hindu religious festival that takes place in India every 12 years. In 2001, 60 million people attended, breaking the record for the world’s biggest gathering. The mass of people was photographed from space by a satellite. ● ● To avoid polluting the elements (fire, earth, water, air), followers of Zoroastrianism in India don’t bury their dead, but instead leave bodies in buildings called “Towers of Silence” for the vultures to pick clean. ● ● India has one of the world’s highest rates of abortion. ● ● Most Indians live on less than two dollars a day. ● ● Cows are considered one of humankind’s seven mothers because they offer milk as does one’s natural mother. ● ● Dancing is one of India’s most highly developed arts and was an integral part of worship in the inner shrines of every temple. It is notable for its expressive hand movements. ● ● Many Indian wives will never say their husband’s name aloud, as it is a sign of disrespect. When addressing him, the wife will use several indirect references, such as “ji” or “look here” or “hello,” or even refer to him as the father of her child. ● ● The Indian flag has three horizontal bands of color: saffron for courage and sacrifice, white for truth and peace, and green for faith, fertility, and chivalry. An emblem of a wheel spinning used to be in the center of the white band, but when India gained independence, a Buddhist dharma chakra, or wheel of life, replaced the spinning wheel. ● ● ● ● ● The temples of Khajuraho are famous for their erotic sculptures and are one of the most popular tourist attractions in India. Scholars still debate the purpose of such explicit portrayals of sexual intercourse, which sometimes involve animals. ● ● The earliest cotton in the world was spun and woven in India. ● ● The Himalayas—from the Sanskrit hima, meaning “snow,” and alaya, meaning “abode”—are found in the north of India. They extend 1,500 miles and are slowly growing taller, by almost an inch (2.5 cm) a year. Several ancient Indian monasteries are found nestled in the grandeur of these mountains. ● ● With 150,000 post offices, India has the largest postal network in the world. ● ● The Bengal tiger is India’s national animal. ● ● Alexander the Great of Macedon (356-323 B.C.) was one of the first important figures to bring India into contact with the West. After his death, a link between Europe and the East would not be restored until Portuguese explorer Vasco da Gama (1460-1524) landed in Calicut, India, in 1498. ● ● The British Raj, or British rule, lasted from 1858 to 1947 (although they had a strong presence in India since the 1700s). British influence is still seen in Indian architecture, education system, transportation, and politics. ● ● Every major world religion is represented in India. Additionally, Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism, and Sikhism all originated in India. ● ● India has the world’s largest movie industry, based in the city of Mumbai (known as the “City of Dreams”). The B in “Bollywood” comes from Bombay, the former name for Mumbai. Almost all Bollywood movies are musicals. ● ● Mohandas K. Gandhi (1869-1948) is known around the world as Mahatma, which is an honorific title meaning “Great Soul” in the ancient Indian language of Sanskrit. ● ● ● ● ● The lotus is sacred to both Hindus and Buddhists. ● The Bahá'í house of worship in Delhi, known as the “Lotus Temple,” is shaped like a lotus flower with 27 gigantic “petals” that are covered in marble. ● ● The banyan, or Indian fig tree, is considered a symbol of immortality and is mentioned in many Indian myths and legends. This self-renewing plant is India’s national tree. ● ● Marigold flowers are used as decoration for Hindu marriages and are a symbol of good fortune and happiness. ● ● The name “India” derives from the River Indus, which most likely is derived from the Sanskrit sindhu, meaning “river.” The official Sanskrit name of India is Bharat, after the legendary king in the epicMahabharata. ● ● Indians made significant contributions to calculus, trigonometry, and algebra. The decimal system was invented in India in 100 B.C. The concept of zero as a number is also attributed to India. ● ● The national fruit of India is the mango. The national bird is the peacock, which was initially bred for food. ● ● Hindi and English are the official languages of India. The government also recognizes 17 other languages (Assamese, Bengali, Gujarati, Nepali, Manipuri, Konkani, Kannada, Kashmiri, Malayalam, Marathi, Oriya, Punjabi, Sanskrit, Sindhi, Tamil, Telugu, and Urdu). Apart from these languages, about 1,652 dialects are spoken in the country. ● ● India has the world’s third largest road network at 1.9 million miles. It also has the world’s second largest rail network, which is the world’s largest civilian employer. ● ● Bathing in the Ganges in particular is thought to take away a person’s sins. It is not unusual to spread a loved one’s ashes in the Ganges. ● ● Most Indians rinse their hands, legs, and face before eating a meal. ● ● It is traditional to wear white, not black, to a funeral in India. Widows will often wear white in contrast to the colorful clothes of married or single women. ● ● India is the world’s largest tea producer, and tea (chai) is its most popular beverage. ● ● The Taj Mahal (“crown palace”) was built by Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan (1592-1666) for his beloved wife Mumtaz Mahal (1593-1631). Made of marble it has intricate workmanship. It took 22,000 workmen 22 years to complete it. ● ● The first and greatest civilization in ancient India developed around the valley of the Indus River (now Pakistan) around 3000 B.C. Called the Indus Valley civilization, this early empire was larger than any other empire, including Egypt and Mesopotamia. ● ● After the great Indus Civilization collapsed in 2000 B.C., groups of Indo-Europeans called Aryans (“noble ones”) traveled to northwest India and reigned during what is called the Vedic age. The mingling of ideas from the Aryan and Indus Valley religions formed the basis of Hinduism, and the gods Shiva, Kali, and Brahma all have their roots in Aryan civilization. The Aryans also recorded the Vedas, the first Hindu scriptures, and introduced a caste system based on ethnicity and occupation. ● ● Chandragupta Maurya (340-290 B.C.), a leader in India who established the Mauryan Empire (321-185 B.C.), was guarded by a band of women on horseback. ● Sanskrit is the mother of all the European ● languages. Sanskrit is the most suitable language for computer software reported in Forbes magazine, ● July 1987. ● Ayurveda is the earliest school of medicine known to humans.Charaka, the father of medicine consolidated Ayurveda 2500 years ago. ● India never invaded any country in her last 10,000 years of history. ● India invented the Number System. Zero was invented by Aryabhatta. ● India never invaded any country in her last 10,000 years of history. ● India invented the Number System. Zero was invented by Aryabhatta. ● ● India never invaded any country in her last 10,000 years of history. ● India invented the Number System. Zero was invented by Aryabhatta. ● ●
Beautiful Hindu Temples of India..

Raju Dakshineswar Kali Temple, Dakshineswar (near Kolkata), West Bengal

Kedarnath temple, Kedarnath, Uttarakhand

Lord Kalabhairaveshwara Temple , Adichunchanagiri Math (95 Km from Bangalore ), Karnataka

Sri Dharmasthala Manjunatheshwara Temple , Dharmasthala (75 kms from Mangalore), Karnataka

Sri Krishna Temple , Guruvayur, Kerala

Sri Shantadurga temple, Ponda, Goa

Sri Madhuru Madananteshwara Siddivinayaka Temple, Madhur (50 kms from Mangalore), Kerala

Sri Padmanabhaswamy Temple, Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala

The best part of the temple is the the huge idol of Lord Vishnu sleeping over the snake is turning into gold(it weighs almost 700 kg)! It is believed that when Mahmud of Ghazni invaded India in the middle ages, the people of the then kingdom invented a black coating which would not wear out even by the strongest chemicals. They coated the large idol with this so that the plunderers wont come to know that its made up of gold. they were unable to remove the coating after the invaders left. But recently, in the past 10 yrs or so the coating is finally wearing out little by little.

Sri Virupaksha Temple, Hampi, Karnataka

Sri Venkateswara Temple , Tirumala, Andhra Pradesh

Sri Gokarnanatheshwara Temple, Mangalore, Karnataka

Sri Ramanathaswamy Temple Corridor, Rameshwaram, Tamil Nadu

Sri Ranganathaswamy Kovil ( Temple ), Srirangam (Near Trichy), Tamil Nadu


Arulmigu Meenakshi Sundareswarar ThiruKovil, Madurai, Tamil Nadu


Arulmigu Arunachaleswarar Temple , Thiruvannamalai, Tamil Nadu


Brihadeeshwar temple, Thanjavur, Tamil Nadu.

The Gopuram of this Temple does not cast any Shadow. Also the Vimaanam( top of the gopuram) of this temple is made of one Single Stone.

Nataraja Temple , Chidambaram, Tamil Nadu


Sree Seetha Ramachandra Swamivari Temple, Bhadrachalam, Andhra Pradesh


Sri Kalahastheshwara Temple, Kalahasti, Andhra Pradesh

The Only Hindu Temple in the world which is opened even during Lunar and Solar Eclipses as the Graha Doshas do not effect this Temple.

Kanchi Kamakshi Amman Temple , Kancheepuram, Tamil Nadu

Arulmigu Sarangapani Temple - Kumbakonam, Tamil Nadu

Tiruchendur Sri Subrahmanya Swami Devasthanam, Tiruchendur, Tamil Nadu

Sri Sharadamba Temple , Sringeri Sharada Peetham, Sringeri (101 km from Mangalore), Karnataka


Sri Hoysaleshvara Temple , Halebidu (Near Hassan), Karnataka

Sri Chennakesava Temple , Belur (Near Hassan), Karnataka

Chamundeswari Temple , Chamundi Hills, Mysore, Karnataka

Sri Krishna Mutt/Temple, Udupi (60 kms from Mangalore), Karnataka.

Murudeshwara Temple, Murudeshwar (165 km from Mangalore), Karnataka

 

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