India is possibly a country with the extremes of everything. From the second coldest inhabited place on Earth to one of the hottest place on it, from one of the rainiest places in the world to also the aridest land, India is truly a country of extremes. And with these diversities in the climatic conditions also raises the question of diversities among the culture of India. With thousands of land to differentiate between the extremes, it is natural to have cultural variations, but even then, India has a standard lifestyle that it believes in and follows seriously. Enter into the Incredible India and find out more about the lifestyle that India follows.
- The Joint Family Structure:
Indians have a notion of living in a big joint family with lots of relatives all under the same roof. From yesteryears to even today, Indians prefer to live in a group of over 20 members in a house that seems like a kingdom in itself. The head is generally the eldest member of the house, and yes, that might even be your great grandmother. The business is most often looked after by the male members while the women manage everything regarding the house. However, this formal system of living has become a little less compact with the family number decreasing to a five member ones. But yes, the married man still lives with his parents along with his wife and children under the same roof.
- The Working Class:
India is also diversified with the working style of its people according to regions. The western and northern regions are generally engaged in high end businesses with the whole family engaged in the same business, for generations after generations. The middle class eastern and southern communities on the other hand engage themselves in services while the rural areas are generally governed by agriculture. These are overviewed by the race trend and heredity of a clan, so it is very much possible that even if a Gujarati man visits and settles down somewhere in Kolkata, he will continue to do business there and vice versa.
- Worshipping the Gods:
Worshipping the deities always comes first to every Indian mind before anything else. The first thing that a person does after waking up in the morning is pray to the God, whoever that maybe, so that the following 24 hours goes as smoothly as possible. It is incredible to note that almost every house has a plant of the holy basil which is watered every day. People have dedicated one or more days for a pilgrimage to their holy places, like a temple, a mosque, a church or a gurudwara to atone for their sins. Apart from that, almost every house will have a personal place of worship for their Gods and Goddesses.
- Respect Your Elderly:
In India, customs are one ritual everyone is serious about. Amongst many, one such custom is respecting the elder members of the society. This is one habit that Indian parents deliberately instill amongst their children right from when they start to gain an understanding of the world. You will find that children automatically bow down to touch the feet of their elders in any occasion taking place or to an elderly he or she just met. It is a simple gratitude that prompts the elder that ‘I forfeit my position to your feet and I will never dream of outsmarting you’. This is also a reason why Indian children are known to never talk back to elders especially when he or she is at fault. Owing to that, it is considered a means of disrespect to call an elder by their name. An Indian child should denote them with the use of words like uncle or aunty to show the utmost respect.
- The Mother as Homemakers:
India is a feminine country where the lady of the house deserves a very respectful position in the house. She has the immense duty of looking after the children, her husband, her parents-in-law and especially the entire house. Not one thing goes around the house without being consulted by the women. Right from when she is a child she is made familiar with the immense duties that she needs to perform on growing up. Previously, a women’s main source of earning was through keeping the house running, but these days, women have successfully advanced beyond the open door and found herself an employment in the society. This just increases more pressure on her, because even if she is earning for the household, she is expected to make the food, attain to all the daily needs and the guests and become the filter of everything entering and leaving the house.
Another form of good etiquettes shown by the Indian culture is that it is mandatory to say ‘Namaste’ whenever you meet someone new. It is just a means to show respect for the person standing opposite you. Namaste creates a ground that helps to connect the hearts of the two person standing face to face each other. It is equivalent to the English custom of saying ‘Hello’. But it has a vividly beautiful meaning that highlights the fact that ‘My soul honors your soul. I honor the place in you where the entire universe resides. I honor the light, love, truth, beauty and peace within you, because it is also within me.’
Lifestyle in India has seen a great change over the years with the advancement in business, technology and the professional market. The standard of living has improved greatly and poverty is slowly and steadily being eradicated as the mass is getting conscious of education, family planning and better living. Money making processes have now been opened up with too many dimensions, thereby exploring better ways of income for both the genders that again assures equality in the society. Thus, lifestyle in this country can be said as a mirror picture of its future prospective.