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Running head: INDIAN CULTURE

Indian Culture
Vinay Krishna Medishetty
Wilmington University

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Indian Culture
Introduction

India is the cradle of the human race, the birthplace of human speech, the mother of
history, the grandmother of legend, and the great grandmother of tradition. Our most valuable
and most artistic materials in the history of man are treasured up in India only (Mark Twain,
n.d.). India is a kaleidoscope of rich culture and heritage; most of it dates back to thousands of
years. Diversification is most the common feature of Indian culture; its physical, religious, and
ethnicity plays crucial role in building the culture.
Physical Features
India is a peninsula, covered three sides by water and the other side with land. The north
Himalayan ranges act as a barrier in between the remaining continent and India. Himalayas are
one of the youngest mountain ranges in the world which prevented India from becoming a cold
desert (The Himalayas, 2011.). The Chinese were unable to invade India due to the presence of
Himalayas in between them and India. The Arabian Sea on the West, The Bay of Bengal on the
East and The Indian Ocean on the South are the three water bodies which cover rest of the
directions of India. Europeans came to India through a sea route, with the help of monsoons for
trading. This showed a great impact on the history as well as culture of India. One after the
other came and annexed different territories of India and ruled for couple of hundreds of years,
which made the Indian culture more blended (Chris Butler, 2007.).
Climate changes turned the entire course of history; one of the greatest civilizations on
earth, The Indus Valley Civilization, is believed to be wiped out due to climate changes. This
civilization flourished 4,500 to 5,000 years back, contemporary with Mesopotamian and

INDIAN CULTURE

Egyptian Civilizations (Vinay Lal, n.d.). They were very well advanced; many cities were build
which had underground drainage systems. A grid pattern was followed to build cities; today only
couple of cities follow grid pattern in India. Women were given equal right of share; they were
involved in decision making. The script used by the people of Indus valley civilization remained
un-deciphered to the present day. This civilization marked a transition of rural community to the
urban community. Many seals were found in which women were wearing extensive jewelry.
This shows their interest in crafts.
Religions
India is the birthplace of some of the greatest religions on the globe. In my opinion,
religion is the crucial factor which made Indian culture diversified. Majority follow Hinduism,
followed by Islam, Christianity, Sikhism, Buddhism, Jainism and Zoroastrianism. Although
presence of multiple religions is felt, Indians are known for their unity in diversity; festivals
mark the specialty of this feature. All people come together irrespective of their religion to
celebrate festivals and show their brotherhood. Even Hinduism is the major religion, India is
known for its tolerance towards minorities.
The oldest religion of the world, Hinduism, originated in India. More than a religion, I
call it as a way of living; it embedded so many traditions and beliefs into it. It is the worlds
third largest religious group in number, after Christianity and Islam. Many vast texts like
Ramayana, Mahabharata, Vedas and Upanishads are associated with it. Hinduism associates
itself with in the Indian soil. Its influence can also be seen on various Southeast Asian countries
like Singapore, Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia and Java. It has been continually absorbing many
new traditions and cultures for many thousands of years.

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Ethnicity

Ethnicity of India is so complex that the present day Indians can be traced back to very
few first humans on the earth. Negroids first migrated to India from Africa; they can be now
seen in parts of Andaman and Nicobar Island (People of India, n.d). They still practice primitive
culture and live in tribes. Some people can even be traced to some parts of Southern India, like
tribes in Seshachalam Hills. Their culture has been intact for the past hundreds of years; they do
not come into contact with the outside world. It is a great opportunity to study the culture how
people practiced cultures many hundreds of years back by studying these tribes.
Next, Dravidians are said to be migrated from Mediterranean region (People of India,
n.d.). They are short and brown skinned with curly hair. These people are said to build the Indus
Valley Civilization. They were mostly agriculture based society and sources indicate that they
gave equal importance to pottery and designing handicrafts. They were also involved in trading,
evidences show that they traded to other parts of the continent. These people are found today in
South of India, believing that after the invasion of another ethnic group, they were send towards
south from the Northern part of India.
Finally, Aryans migrated to India; many believe that they came from the Central Asia
(people of India, n.d.). But, some people claim that they migrated from Europe or Arctic region.
Aryans came to India in between 2000 B.C to 1500 B.C, making the last ethnic group which
migrated to India. They were much efficient than the Dravidians in case of warfare; they had the
technology of metallurgy. Hinduism was taken to new heights with the advent of the Aryans.
Adolf Hitler believes that they are the true Aryans, and he even used the Swastika symbol for his
party.

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Conclusion

In conclusion, Indian people come from different backgrounds which enrich their culture.
Diversification is most the common feature of Indian culture, its physical features, religions, and
ethnicity plays crucial role in building the culture. At the end of the day, all that matters is how
people live in harmony even though they belong to different religions, castes, and creeds. For
the cause of nation, all the Indians get united irrespective of the cultural background, and this can
be observed for the entire course of history.

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References

Himalayas Facts. (2011, February 11). Retrieved June 24, 2015, from
http://www.pbs.org/wnet/nature/the-himalayas-himalayas-facts/6341/
Indian Religions. (n.d.). Retrieved June 17, 2015, from
http://www.culturalindia.net/indian-religions/
India Physical Features. (2012, November 22). Retrieved June 17, 2015, from
http://www.indianembassy.hu/?page_id=1833
Manas: History and Politics, Indus Valley. (n.d.). Retrieved June 17, 2015, from
https://www.sscnet.ucla.edu/southasia/History/Ancient/Indus2.html
Manas: Religions of India. (n.d.). Retrieved June 17, 2015, from
https://www.sscnet.ucla.edu/southasia/Religions/religions.html
People of India. (n.d.). Retrieved June 17, 2015, from
http://www.webindia123.com/india/people/people.htm