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RainyDayNinja
10-04-2010, 11:22 PM
So I'm writing a modern Hindu-dominated alternate history, and having never had much practical experience with that culture, I'm looking for details to make it ring true. Any ideas are helpful, but here are some specific issues I'm looking at:

-How might a devout Hindu respond to another who is engaging in a revenge fantasy?

-Is there a quick prayer, mantra, or ritual (analogous to a Catholic crossing himself) that someone might use when they were about to do something that would probably cause a lot of trouble?

-What does a traditional Hindu birthday celebration for a small child look like?

-Are there any verbal quirks or motifs that show up (or will absolutely never show up) in conversations between Hindus?

Kitty Pryde
10-04-2010, 11:39 PM
You know there are many different forms of Hinduism, right? It's not a single monolithic religion. And it's far more diverse than Christianity is, or Judaism, or Islam. For instance, if you google Vaishnava and Shaivism--They believe in different supreme deities, amongst other major differences, including holidays, rituals, practices, morals, and beliefs. Within those distinctions, there are different schools, sects, branches, philosophies, etc. Many holidays are celebrated differently in different parts of the country. It's also practiced differently in different countries.

English as it is commonly spoken in India has many words and constructions that American English doesn't have, based on the language evolving based on British English after colonialism amongst speakers of Hindi and other Indian languages.

DrZoidberg
10-05-2010, 07:52 PM
There's the ubiquitous head-waggle, which is a cross between nodding and shaking one's head. It means that "I'm listening to you". It doesn't mean "yes" or "no". Very confusing for a Westerner.

SilverBirch
10-05-2010, 11:35 PM
You know there are many different forms of Hinduism, right? It's not a single monolithic religion. And it's far more diverse than Christianity is, or Judaism, or Islam.

This. My best advice: raid your library. Read every single book relating to Hinduism and India that you can get your hands on. Two good ones off the top of my head are Sacred India (Lonely Planet Series) and Travels Through Sacred India by Roger Housden.

Scour the internets - the Hindustan Times (http://www.hindustantimes.com) is one of the bigger newspapers. Search out Indian-based blogs (everyone has a blog nowadays, right?). There are tons of websites concerning Bollywood (the Hindi film industry). If there are any Indian restaurants near you, give them a visit. The more you can learn about Hinduism and Indian culture, the better your story will be. Good luck!

Keyan
10-07-2010, 11:58 AM
There's the ubiquitous head-waggle, which is a cross between nodding and shaking one's head. It means that "I'm listening to you". It doesn't mean "yes" or "no". Very confusing for a Westerner.

Yeah. The verbal translation would be "uh-huh" or "oh yeah!" depending on the enthusiasm of the head-waggle.

RainyDayNinja
10-07-2010, 06:50 PM
I'm having trouble picturing the head-waggle. Is that like tracing a figure-8 in the air with your nose?

DrZoidberg
10-07-2010, 06:54 PM
Youtube is your friend. There's tonnes of videos on it.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-7m2aDxVAuI&feature=related

padnar
10-21-2010, 06:44 PM
So I'm writing a modern Hindu-dominated alternate history, and having never had much practical experience with that culture, I'm looking for details to make it ring true. Any ideas are helpful, but here are some specific issues I'm looking at:

-How might a devout Hindu respond to another who is engaging in a revenge fantasy?

-Is there a quick prayer, mantra, or ritual (analogous to a Catholic crossing himself) that someone might use when they were about to do something that would probably cause a lot of trouble?

-What does a traditional Hindu birthday celebration for a small child look like?

-Are there any verbal quirks or motifs that show up (or will absolutely never show up) in conversations between Hindus?


sorry just now I saw this post. I am a Hindu , so I will answer some of yur questions
A Hindu as a religion believes in peace . There is no revenge as such
They might call Jai Kali mata . She is a Goddess who is shown as killing demons and bad elements
The first birthday is celebrated very grandly. The birthday is done on basis of the stat on the month which the baby is born .suppose I am born in April. the day on which my birth star is close to my birth date is celebrated
I cannot understand yur last question
if yu have any more doubts you can pm me
padma