[Advaita-l] Do Hindus have self-respect?

Navin Rajaram navinr at moschip.com
Wed Jan 12 07:34:58 CST 2005

S Jayanarayanan wrote:

>--- "Jaldhar H. Vyas" <jaldhar at braincells.com> wrote:
>>In the mean time do you keep Shikha?  Do you wear tripundra and
>Jaldhar, I put a bit of vibhUti on my forehead and went to a grocery
>store in the US, and people looked at me as though I came in from Mars!
>A few even commented on "something stuck on my forehead". I'm talking
>about just a tiny stripe, and even that generated reaction. Needless to
>say, I haven't repeated that action for a long time now! Of course this
>depends on how self-conscious one is, and one's capacity to handle
>comments from passers-by.
>In India, that's quite all right, but not so in the West.
Hari Om,

I have had a similar experience with vibhuti on my forehead. Since I 
spent most of my 3 year US stay in South Carolina, I found that the 
people there were politely curious as opposed to people 
elsewhere(upstate NY,Philadelphia,etc) who were amused/thought I was an 
On one hand, if you notice Christian customs in USA, there is custom of 
applying ash on one's forehead during the holy day of "Ash Wednesday". I 
think most Christians would identify with the vibhuti custom if it is 
compared to their ash custom.

On a personal note, I feel, the choice of being self-conscious or not is 
quite subjective.

Hari Om,

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