India has been considered as a diverse country, an amalgamation of different religious beliefs, culture, and tradition. In the name of tradition and culture, however, India blinded with superstitions through certain instances, may have suffocated us in ways that are morally degrading as well as unacceptable to most of us. No matter how much pride we may hold on being associated with the feeling of being an Indian, there are various instances when the existing cultural beliefs and practices can make us feel like complete aliens in our homeland, leading to frustration. But what is all the more thought-provoking is, in spite of people having expressed their disregard against certain existing doctrines of Indian culture. Instead, we have been deprived of the liberty to follow certain aspects of our tradition at our consent, rather our thoughts have been further confined by these beliefs and our progress as a nation has been hindered in a way.
To begin with, the Indian culture has introduced among us a feeling of apathy towards caste-based discrimination and gender biases. Even though India has preached the concept of secularism, there is a wide gap between various residing communities in the name of religion and culture, and that has worsened the social situation in the country. Surprisingly, in certain parts of the country, a woman has found her place only in the kitchen and always has an opinion less rational than a man. In certain places, the girl child is abandoned and often in worse cases, killed as a fetus because she brings with her the burden of dowry. Some of the young females have also been deprived of education because they only bear the taboo of being married and performing the responsibilities of a good wife which includes producing babies as well.
Next, in the name of religious offerings and sacrifices, the concept of donating gold and money in religious places no matter even if be done with an intent of nobility, in certain circumstances ultimately accumulate in the funds of groups of corrupt organisations and specific people deriving pleasures of monetary benefits in the name of tradition and culture. Often, people are so blinded by their beliefs, they may be led to the path of compromising on human life and sacrificing animals to perform certain rituals. Not only that, the blind faith restored on specific religious leaders among many, who proclaim themselves as saints and men of wisdom with great supernatural powers, are a bane to the Indian society. Unable to distinguish between acts of morality or inhumanity, most of us are carried away by these orators and worship them next to God, allowing them to take complete control over our lives.
In certain communities, widows and low caste members are not allowed to be part of social functions because they are said to bring misfortune and ill-luck to such occasions. With the pride of holding onto its tradition and culture, our society has reached a threshold beyond which these values and principles appear to be a cause of show off and arrogance among us. It is unfortunate that we as Indians, do not realize that by strengthening and embracing these beliefs we are not being led towards a better society, instead we are being taken a step backward from progress. Indulging in fasts throughout weeks to bear fruit to a desire, be blinded by superstitions and letting our culture and not conscience decide our actions has been a major setback in evolving and qualifying as responsible global citizens.
The reasons for our blind faith, however, have not been strong and persistent enough to hold us back from adopting and embracing the western culture. We have been drawn towards a western standard of living in terms of brands, clothes, learning the language and adopt a relatively modern lifestyle with recreational activities such as playing golf or polo for a hobby. But, we have very conveniently not chosen to inculcate in our thoughts if not implement in our culture, the different possibilities of improvement we could possibly seek from the foreign culture itself to bring about a radical and more positive change in our understanding of religion. The biggest reason for the loopholes in our culture is attributed largely to the fact that we fail to value our own opinions and views on it. We believe what our religion and culture preaches and implements are correct from the time of its inception, and thus, we are bound by it, our lives and minds. We are letting our thoughts and beliefs be driven by heard notions and known religious beliefs and traditions.
No matter how much our lives may have been influenced by science and technology, and how much we may have evolved as individuals, we have failed ourselves in evolving with the Indian Culture. We have ourselves let us be puppets no matter how trapped we may be by such blinding superstitions and existing traditional norms and practices in the name of culture. We have maintained double standards and have turned a deaf ear towards listening to the plight of women and the discrimination experienced by the socially backward sections of people. We have failed to welcome a girl child and killed them before birth, we have taken so many lives to fulfill our own interests, and said to be having done it all in the name of culture and religion. We have showered money and gold on self-proclaimed religious leaders and let orthodox doctrines cloud our rationality, but what we have failed at miserably is to uphold the true values of the Indian culture in ways too many to be ignored.