Society & Culture
'Spirit of India'
the-south-asian.com March 2001
Issue 3 / 2001
Traditional Societies - Their Wisdom & Challenges by Isabel Allende
Isabel Allende, one of the most popular writer of our times, reflects on the potential strengths of ethnic and cultural diversity. Ethnic and religious differences are the cause of major conflicts worldwide. The 'developed' world is on the verge of losing the strong 'sense' of family, place and community - so valued in traditional cultures. And traditional societies are endangered by cultural imperialism. Half of world's spoken languages are already lost. "The first time I had any hint of the size and complexity of the world was when one of my uncles returned from India. He was the only person in the family, probably in the whole city, who had traveled so far from home. He had set out in search of the 999 names of God and returned a skeleton...
India has, historically, been a refuge and sheltered people of all religions, creeds and beliefs – Zoroastrians, Jews, Sufis, and more recently Bahais - all were granted protection and security when they sought it. They were accepted into the fold of the mainstream society, given land and equal opportunity to excel in their profession of choice – and remain Indians. Hinduism, Jainism, Buddhism, Sikhism are religions of the land – all were born in India. The central Asian invaders brought Islam. The colonial powers brought Christianity. India remained a large-hearted host to all, enriched its cultural heritage – and became a truly secular nation. People from all communities rose to become eminent citizens of the land. In the first of our series on ‘Spirit of India’ – we feature the story of the Jewish Community of India.
An in-depth research into the recent downturn of technology stocks - did the Investment bankers/analysts hard sell the IPOs - Is Value Investing the new Mantra - what does Warren Buffett's portfolio look like - and the risk factors and lessons for South Asia.
New York Rangers centre Manny Malhotra is one of the youngest players ever drafted into the league. At 20, Malhotra is also the only Indian player ever to strap on skates in the NHL (National Hockey League). He has the Indian-Americans suddenly gripped to the game of ice-hockey. When he is not on the ice he loves "to walk around Times Square and people-watch." His music favourites are Dr. Dre, Funkmaster Flex, Mos Def, and Jurassic 5, and ..... Beethoven, Mozart, and the Three Tenors! Malhotra is the fourth and youngest child of a French-Canadian mother and a father from Punjab, India.
'American Desi' is writer-director Piyush Dinker Pandya's debut film - a romantic comedy - easy on the nerves, eyes and ears - on a subject close to his heart - the cultural tug-of-war in growing up as a second-generation Indian-American.
'Silk Road on Wheels' - Akhil Bakshi's riveting travelogue of central Asia.
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