In the photograph, there is the recognizable fact that the Patkar family practices some form of Hinduism. There are multiple aspects of this photograph that make this evident. The first aspect is the red dot, known as a bindi, on the mother’s forehead. Married Hindu women wear this symbol, exhibited brightly between her eyebrows. The bindi is said to represent female energy, which is believed to protect women and their families. Another aspect of the photograph that proves that the Patkar family is Hindu is that the absence of meat in their weekly diet. Hinduism is a major religion in India, and thus most of India’s population abstains from eating meat. Hindu scriptures proclaim the interconnectedness of all existence – including humans, animals, along with all of nature. Traditionally, followers of the Hindu religion were careful to take great care in what they ate. According to Hinduism food is a gift given from God. Theref...
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...al religious and cultural beliefs. Yet, the carefree placement of the packaged foods woven throughout the traditional Indian dishes exemplifies the casual influences of the Western diet on the strong cultural history of India. There are many individual parts that comprise this photograph, but this entire photograph is a snapshot of India as a whole. The most important aspect is that this food not only brings the Patkar family together to enjoy their meals and connect to one another, but it is a giant system connecting the community to their meal. By appreciating the bounty of food provided by the local market the Patkar family is one part of a larger whole. Hinduism teaches that all things are sacred and that all things are interconnected. The Patkar family of India is a beautiful example of how even old traditions hold out against the ever-changing Western world.
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