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

Mahāpātakas literally means ‘heinous sins’.

The concept of sin exists in almost all the great religions of the world. ‘Pātaka’ or ‘papa’ is the most common word used in the Sanskrit scriptures. It comes as a result of the transgression of the laws of the moral and the spiritual world as enunciated by the scriptures. These laws are considered as promulgated by God Himself.

The dharmaśāstras and the purāṇas generally classify sins into two main categories:

  1. Mahāpātakas or atipātakas - major, mortal or most heinous sins
  2. Upapātakas - minor or venial sins

Sins Under Mahāpātakas[edit]

Under the mahāpātakas are included:

  • Prohibited sexual relationships like incest
  • Murder
  • Drinking liquor
  • Theft
  • Associating with the sinners who commit such deeds

The prāyaścittas or expiation for the mahāpatakas range from voluntary death to long years of very severe penances.


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