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

Āvaraṇa-devatā literally means ‘deity installed in the area surrounding the main deity’.

The garbhagṛha (sanctum sanctorum) of a temple is generally surrounded by āvaraṇas or enclosures whose number may vary from one to seven. Though the main purpose of these āvaraṇas is to provide space for pradakṣiṇā (circum ambulation) round the main deity, they also serve to accommodate the images of other deities considered to be the attendants or the retinue of the main deity. These deities are called ‘āvaraṇa-devatās’ or ‘parivāra- devatās.’

The Vaikhānasāgama lists as many as 135 parivāradevatās spread over seven āvaraṇas for a Viṣṇu temple. Some of them have been mentioned below :

  1. Brahmā
  2. Aniruddha
  3. Trivikrama
  4. Varuṇa
  5. Śukra
  6. Bṛhaspati
  7. Subhadrā

In a Śiva temple, Devī, Caṇḍeśvara and Brahmā find a place in the āvaraṇas. In a Devī temple, Śiva, Viṣṇu, Gaṇapati and Kārttikeya or Subrahmaṇya are placed as āvaraṇas.


  • The Concise Encyclopedia of Hinduism, Swami Harshananda, Ram Krishna Math, Bangalore