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The Universe Is The Foundation Of Indian Art

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The Universe Is The Foundation Of Indian Art


The world is blessed by art. In the human experience, it is what we yearn for. We can better understand the world and ourselves via the power of art. It is a crucial component of our society because it helps us understand our emotions better, makes us more self-aware, and makes us more receptive to new ideas and experiences.

Today’s generation is fixated on various mental and physical problems like stress, depression, and anxiety, which in turn leads to loneliness, suicides, divorces, and illness. The unstoppable need for more and more; the complete collapse of morals and value systems – the insane push to materialism and consumerism, that today, most of the ‘India’ – and surprisingly Generation Z is going through is not what India and its ethos, stands for!

The ‘loka’, or universe, is the foundation of Indian arts, culture, and social structure. Despite the irrational uprooting of everyone in the name of progress, modernization, and prosperity, some of it is still present in our rural ecosystems, with the folk arts, music, and dance, as well as the customs and practices, and the minimalist way of life.

To a large extent, the ‘Bharat’ has and is, getting impacted, but still, in many pockets, we find people living a very healthy- happy, and simple life, with the ‘loka’ gyan, which makes them much more empowered and enriched, than any high flying successful executive or celebrity of India.

Connecting to ‘loka’- is the core and is an important message and reminder, for today’s youth, gen z, and millennials who are hooked to the Western world and modern-day lifestyle, with electronic gadgets and technology, beyond the levels of sanity!

From the very beginning, the Indian approach to life, based on the principles of continuity, harmony, interrelationships, and interdependence; has impacted its arts and culture. The acknowledgment of individuality, together with its balance of autonomy and liberty, is what is most endearing about this culture. It sends the message that a person can be more fulfilled and pleased with themselves by adopting a holistic outlook.

The lesson here relates to the Indian concept of “Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam”, which is a Sanskrit expression found in Hindu texts of the Maha Upanishad and means, “The World Is One Family” – i.e., that all living things on earth are a single family. An important lesson for today’s generation and Generation Z, the millennials, is to think beyond themselves, keeping the larger perspective in mind, including our plant-the world, the animal kingdom, the environment, and its ethos, to counter the effects of the current, unwelcoming self-centered approach. Every day people encounter it, and in the end, it just harms the self. As a result of humankind’s damage to nature or a too-self-centered lifestyle, one has been experiencing one of the biggest issues of all time, and that is – ‘loneliness’.

Indian arts and culture are enlivened with richness and the depth of life- in all its shades and aspects. No discipline or subject is excluded from its canvas. From Quantum Physics to the most basic, everyday thoughts, feelings, and actions, which have been an essential part of our arts and have helped to develop an ethos and an ambiance, where the old and the young alike, live in consonance, the Guru Shishya Parampara, guiding, helping, and supporting each other is another important life aspect for the Gen Z to understand, value, and imbibe.

Learning about the emotions

Indian culture is about human touch and art is all about touching those emotions. Gen Z and the millennials can witness a sea change- physically, emotionally, and spiritually, if they go deep into any art form, including the practice of Yoga or going through the ‘gym culture’, or the mad rush towards modern-day ‘gurus’ and ‘yogis’. Yoga positions are more than simply physical exercise; they also assist one to enter a deep meditative state, correcting panch-tantra imbalances, and re-establish a connection with nature. Millennials can help achieve this state by connecting within.

Indian arts are all about expression and feelings. Our arts have a twin purpose of entertainment and Sadhana if done with purity and ‘Samarpan’. Devotion brings a lot of peace, joy, and connection with the universe and self. It is beyond words and deeply satisfying too! To feel contented and satisfied, from within and with self, is the need for the hour, to bring in some solace and calmness, to present-day chaos in the world and its people.

Indian arts, transmit, transform, and transcend. Gen Z and the millenniums can experience the world of happiness and satisfaction, and live a far more enriched, satisfying, and giving life, by connecting to the essence of what Indian music and arts, and culture have been all about – connecting to our self, our roots and to the family values. Going within the self, to understand the universe outside, is an important lesson for the people of today’s time, to pick from our arts and culture – our value system – the ‘loka’! (IANS. Srivastava is an India based dancer and researcher)

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