The mind and heart are common terms personifying intellectual and spiritual characteristics. The mind illustrates the current state of what it describes and the heart describes the undying features of which is portrayed. The mind may change depending on influence but the heart is fixed. These regards, the Indian mind and heart may take on many forms.Starting at the core of India, its heart can be correlated with Hinduism. Hinduism started in Indian approximately the third millennium BC and is still practiced in the present day.
Also, as it is of Indian origin, its rightful place can be considered the heart of India. It can be said that Hinduism is substantially outdated by todays standards as formidable religion of Indian majority. During the period of the caste social structure within India it was en excellent fit. But this ensures its position of the heart of India by being fundamental to the development of ancient India and forming modern India.The Bhagavad Gita is a timeless example of how Hinduism can be applied and seen in Indian life. It also enforces the example of how Hinduism is the heart of India by demonstrating the qualities of ancient Indian culture.
These beliefs although outdated, are also seen manifesting in many important values, such as Buddhism, which will be discussed later. It is in this document that both sets of beliefs which provide the foundation of Hindu and Buddhist beliefs are combined.In The Bhagavad Gita Arjuna and Krishna converse and discuss spirituality.
This literature is excellent in explaining the Indian theory that true spiritual conduct is beyond what we consider logical. Before Sri Krishna instructs Arjuna to fight in the battle he says The impermanent has no reality; reality lies in the eternal. Those who have seen the boundary between these two have attached the end of all knowledge. Realize that which pervades the universe and is indestructible; no power can affect this unchanging, imperishable reality. (qtd.
Easwaran 43)In this document Sri Krishna describes the intellectual explanation of Sankhya. (qtd. Easwaran 44) This is vital in describing Buddhism, which was derived from the Sankhya school of thought. Death means the attainment of heaven; victory means the enjoyment of the earth. Therefore rise up, Arjuna, resolved to fight! Having made yourself alike in pain and pleasure, profit and loss, victory and defeat, engage in this great battle and you will be free from sin.
(qtd Easwaran 44) Throughout Sri Krishnas explanation there is no mention of god, only war will liberate him through realization in relation to god. This is an imperative to appreciating the introductory perceptions of Buddhism, which is also the mind of India.While Hinduism and Buddhism may describe the mind and heart of India well, it may also be that the mind and heart of India is western and eastern, respectively. The basic principles of early Hinduism are still a part of Indian culture.
The Perfect Bride by Dandin illustrates a practical vision of early Indian culture. The last paragraph is particularily interesting. It says he ignored her and and wooed a courtesan; the bride treated even that woman as her dear friend. She waited on her husband as if he were a god, untiringly. She did the household chores without fail and, wonder of tact, won the affection of the servants. (qtd. Easwaran 127)Throughout history, India has been exposed to different Western cultures.
Romila Thapar explains in A History of India that during the sixteenth century the Portuguese who came by sea to establish themselves in the south and the west. (qtd Thapar 326) Also, Indias increasing market economy and international business has increased Western cultural penetration. This new Indian mind is still influenced by the Eastern heart.In The Travels of Sanudasa the Merchant we can see how the traditions of Indian culture were originated. In this story, Sanudasa, a merchant in India, strives for riches as he leaves his mother in her village. Throughout his search, he realizes that he needs not to spend his time searching for riches, and You can draw forever on Bharadvajas mountain of gold. (qtd Easwaran 142) This is the heart of Indian culture because it illustrates the qualities of the East that have existed for thousands of years.
While Indian culture may become more westernized, these beliefs seem to stay part of Indian civilization.Understanding Indian culture is essential in understanding India, the forgotten giant. In understanding any culture, it is sometimes helpful to evaluate what current state it is in, and if there is any other underlying features that may contribute to its overall characteristics. India is an excellent example of a country that anyone interested can gain significant insight through this type of analysis.
Its rich history and current status allows a past and present investigation by personifying the mind and heart.Bibliography:Works CitedEaswaran, Eknath. The Bhagavad Gita. Classics of Eastern Thought.
Ed. Lynn H. Nelson and CK Peebles, New York: Jovanovich, 38-50.Van Buitenen, J. A.
B. The Perfect Bride. Classics of Eastern Thought. Ed.
Lynn H. Nelson and CK Peebles, New York: Jovanovich, 126-130.Van Buitenen, J. A. B. The Travels of Sanudasa the Merchant.
Classics of Eastern Thought. Ed. Lynn H. Nelson and CK Peebles, New York: Jovanovich, 131-144.
Thapar, Romila. A History of India, Revised Edition. New York: Penguin Group, 1966.