Thursday, August 8, 2013


by Shoban Saxena, Times of India Alameda Sarutaia is a quiet street just off Avenida Paulista, the main avenue that runs through the center of this megalopolis. Cross a couple of buildings, you come across an old villa and the sounds coming from inside - tabla beats mixing with the strains of sitar and an Indian voice singing an old song devoted to a God - make you stop. A step closer to the gate and you smell incense. This is the Indian Cultural Centre (ICC) of Sao Paulo. 
The ICC has a decent auditorium, but it is overflowing, with people sitting on the floor, on the steps or standing just standing outside the hall. When you see such a large number of Brazilians at an Indian cultural event, it's impossible not to ask what attracts them to Indian dance and music and culture.

The two countries have been geographically as well as culturally so far from each other that there hasn't been much cultural exchange between them. But at least here in Sao Paulo, the scenario has changed in the past couple of years. With the opening of the centre less than two years ago, the ICC has become Little India, where anyone interested in any aspect of Indian culture can drop by and get immersed in Indian dance, music, spiritual traditions or in the impressive collection of books in the library. 
But if the centre has become a thriving hub of Indian culture in such a short span, it's because of hard work and dedication of some people - Indians and Brazilians. The center is always buzzing with activity. Walk through its three floors and you see Brazilians learning Indian dances, music, Hindi and yoga. And it's all free.

The director of the Indian Cultural Centre (ICC) of Sao Paulo, Kamaljit Singh, brings amazing energy to the place. It's his tireless work that has made this centre a Little India in the heart of Sao Paulo, Brazil. Hindu religion or Vedic culture, is not merely a religion. It is a spiritual path and way of life and also offers a scientific way of life, from diet, lifestyle, daily schedule, etc. In Hindu society, the temple has occupied a pivotal position, not only the spiritual aspect of it, but also because it has been the focal point of social and cultural activities. The Hindu temples from the different Sampradayas, and particularly the Hare Krishna temples in the Western countries, have become important cultural centers around which all other activities, such as music, dancing, painting, architecture, sculpturing, and many other crafts, are organized. These "Yoga centers" have been built to serve spiritual and cultural needs of all people around the world. (Editor's note).

Vedic culture is full of knowledge, and a person born in India can fully take advantage of Vedic cultural knowledge and the cultural system known as varnāśrama-dharma. Even at the present time, as we travel all over the world, we see that in some countries human beings have many material facilities but no facilities for spiritual advancement. ... Especially in the Western countries there are ample facilities for material comforts, but no one has any idea of spiritual advancement. Many are hankering after spiritual advancement, but many cheaters come, take advantage of their money, bluff them and go away. Fortunately the Krishna consciousness movement is there to give all facilities for both material and spiritual advancement. In this way people in the Western countries may take advantage of this movement.

Śrīla A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda :
Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam (Bhāgavata Purāṇa) - SB 4.25.13
Canto 4: The Creation of the Fourth Order 
Chapter 25: The Descriptions of the Characteristics of King Purañjana
Verse 13 - Bhaktivedanta VedaBase

Published by dasavatara das - “Vedic Views on World News”

1 comment:

Blogger said...

New Diet Taps into Innovative Plan to Help Dieters LOSE 15 Pounds within Only 21 Days!