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

Arcā literally means ‘that which is worshiped’.

The Vaiṣṇavite scriptures which preaches the cult of Viṣṇu-Nārāyaṇa-Krsṇa put forth the theory that the Supreme Lord Viṣṇu has four kinds of manifestations :

  1. The ‘para’ or the Supreme
  2. The ‘vyuha’ or the emanation
  3. The ‘vibhava’ or the incarnation
  4. The ‘arcā’ or the icon

Out of these, the arcā represents the images or icons installed and worshiped ceremonially in temples and shrines. Such icons are classified into four groups :

  • Svayariivyakta or self-manifested
  • Daiva or established by gods
  • Ārṣa or consecrated by the ṛṣis (sages)
  • Mānuṣa or prepared by human beings

Even the man-made images, though prepared out of inanimate substances, can become ‘alive’ if they are duly consecrated through the prescribed rites. God who is omnipotent ‘descends’ into such images with a subtle body. This is the ‘arcāvatāra’ or incarnation for purposes of ordinary worship.


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

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