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

Pitṛyāna literally means ‘the path of manes’.

Inference of Pitṛyāna[edit]

Literally, the word means the path by which a pitṛ or a dead ancestor goes to the Candraloka or the world of the moon. We find from the Upaniṣads and even the Bhagavadgitā[1] that the ancient people believed in two paths by which the soul of a dead person could go, either to the Brahmaloka or to the Candraloka. The former was called Devayāna or Arcirādimārga and the latter as Pitṛyāna or Dhumādimārga.

Terminals of Pitṛyāna[edit]

The various stations mentioned in the Pitṛyāna are:

  1. Dhuma - smoke
  2. Rātri - night
  3. Aparapakṣa - dark fortnight
  4. Dakṣiṇāyana - southern solstice
  5. Pitṛloka - world of manes
  6. Ākāśa - space
  7. Candramās - world of Somarāja or the king Moon

These words represent the various guides on the path.

Results of Performing Vedic Rites[edit]

Those who perform Vedic rites like Agnihotra and public utility activities like digging wells or planting trees etc., go by this path to the Candraloka[2] and return to the earth after exhausting their religious merit. The Candraloka is more like a heaven from which there is return.


  1. Bhagavadgitā 8.24-26
  2. Candraloka means the world of the Moon.
  • The Concise Encyclopedia of Hinduism, Swami Harshananda, Ram Krishna Math, Bangalore