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Top 10 Cultural Myths About India

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1. India is a country

We often think of India as a country, that is what we have been learning in the schools. Well, in a broader sense, it is true, but when you visit and experience it, you will feel India is like a continent where big nations having different languages, culture, music, food and clothing styles are living together in harmony. You can consider India as an advanced version of European Union where there is one economy, one market and no visa/document requirement to travel around. India is often termed as subcontinent; usually Indian subcontinent includes Pakistan, Nepal, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Sri Lanka and sometimes Myanmar. When the British rule on the subcontinent ended, over 400+ princely states (or nations, to get the actual feel) joined and formed the union of India. Later French colony of Pondicherry, Portuguese colony of Goa, ‘Daman and Diu’, ‘Dadra and Nagar Haveli’ and independent state of Sikkim joined the Indian union bringing in more diversity in the already diverse India.

Indian government never tried to homogenize its population unlike how Soviet Union, China, and many other countries did to strengthen their rule over the territory. Soviet Union enforced its culture and usage of its language, Russian on all the republics to strengthen its domination. India, on the other hand, left its diversity intact allowing people of different communities practice their religion, language, culture and customs freely.

With that much diversity, which is not even found in entire Europe, it would be unfair to generalize Indians, for e.g. Indians are always late, all Indians are vegetarians, all Indians drink tea with milk and sugar. I hope you are getting my point, with a whopping 1.237 billion population; it is even greater than that of Europe + Russia, you cannot dare to generalize it.

2. All Indians are in customer support

If you live in US, Canada or in West Europe, it would be surprising if you have never talked to an Indian customer care/technical support representative. When I was in US, I realized that people thought jobs going to India meant tech support jobs, since that was what people had experienced in their daily life. However, unfortunately for Americans, outsourcing is not just about technical support, but entire engineering and software jobs that has been captured by Indian companies. If your phone bill was calculated and paid correctly, if your flight was on time, if your insurance claim was paid successfully, if your shopping bill was calculated correctly and discount coupon was applied without an error then you have to thank an Indian. Not just that, if you use Apple, Microsoft and Facebook, again you can thank an Indian. Indian knowledge and engineering is everywhere so deeply integrated in your life that you will not realize it. You realize it only when a customer care representative from India is talking to you.

3. Indian women do not study

It is a big myth about India around the world that Indian society does not allow women to enjoy their freedom and practice their right to education. Post-independence, India has been struggling to eradicate some social evils that were brought in the society during British and central Asian rule in India. Indian literacy rate is low at 74.04%; it consists of male literacy rate of 82.14% and female literacy rate of 65.46%. It is true that in earlier days due to poverty parents do not used to send their girls to school. It was a widely accepted tradition that women after marriage would go to a new house and become homemaker. Therefore, parents used to teach her methods of managing and organizing home along with cooking.

Today things are changing and have almost changed. 65.46% literacy rate of females include all the women in India irrespective of their age, youth literacy is much better. It is very common to see Indian girls in cities flaunting their beautiful clothes and mobiles and going to school. In villages, I observed girls wearing white shirt and blue skirt, or white and blue salwar suit and red ribbon on their pony or wearing red hairband and going to school. They graduate from schools not just literate but educated. Almost every year in the nationwide board exams of 10th and 12th class Indian girls outshines boys when it comes to percentage scores. These girls not just pass the high schools, but secure professional degrees and career as engineer, doctor, lawyer or journalist. Indian women are in the every profession you can think of. As the new generation takes the command of the nation, we will see more improvements.

4. Indian women do not work and stay at home

It is not always true, but it happens a lot all over India. However, it does not necessarily mean that women are forced kept inside homes. As I wrote in the previous point, today more women are working than ever in India, as Indian society is getting modern. However, working was never related to education. I have seen old women or uneducated women even in the village working in the farms, tea gardens, in small-scale industries or as labourers or maids. In cities, I have seen women doing all sorts of professional work as men.

Often in the joint family women are made to stay at home and do home tasks. Nevertheless, this concept of joint family and living with parents is gradually becoming unpopular as unlike earlier days, today often people go to bigger cities like Delhi, Mumbai, Pune, Hyderabad and Bangalore for work, leaving behind their family. Sometimes it is a woman’s desire to stay at home and take care of their child or a community through an NGO. Indian women think differently, there are women who leave their career for their family. I see many people in my home in Russia were criticizing this, but most of the times it is a women’s self-decision!

In middle class and in upper class, being a homemaker is considered as luxury. Women relax at home and watch daily soap opera continuously; maidservants come at home and do all the cleaning and even cooking. Women join various community in the neighbourhood like kitty parties and hang out together play games, and organize a feast. Some women join NGOs and social or animal welfare communities and spend their free time there, isn’t it a royal life? 🙂

5. Indian women are not allowed in temples

It is again a popular myth. My friends who went to India and came back to Russia were telling me that women cannot go to temples in India, then they were showing me their pictures in Akshardham and ISKCON temple in New Delhi, and my quick question was how did you manage to intrude into a no woman zone?

Then there is another myth that women and men made to stand in separate lines in the temple. It is again not true, in temple anyone can go and in any order. Yes, it is possible that temples may have security lines and security lines in India are always separate for men and women because it involves frisking.

There are some temples in India like Sabrimala in Kerala where women are not allowed if they are sexually active. It is not because they are considered dirty or impure, but because the old style temples are often situated at the great heights, which requires long trekking to reach there. Earlier sexually active women during periods used to get fainted or feel uncomfortable. Therefore, the society decided to avoid women from the age of 10 to 50 coming to the temple. Now with better facilities women can tackle problems during period, but temple tradition became like a rule over the time which no one considered changing it. Such temples are very less in India, in my knowledge had only this temple.

top 10 myths about India

TWR journalist from Russia visits famous ISKCON temple in Delhi. Women can go inside and sit or walk with men.

6. Indian men practice Dowry

Despite strict laws in place by the Indian government, dowry is still practiced by many in the country. Often bride’s parents gives her gifts when she marries and goes with her husband. It is considered normal, but the problem arises if there is specific demand of cash or items from the groom side. If the groom side is not satisfied, it may result into domestic violence. This happen among not so socially and intellectual open people. Even education could not help eradicate this problem. I have seen highly professionals like doctors, engineers and lawyers also indulging in it. One needs to be spiritually open and intellectual to overcome this mentality.

With love marriages becoming popular in India, dowry practices is also becoming less popular. However, like the first rule, you cannot generalize all the people in India. Moreover, I have seen people and my friends in India who are strictly against it.

7. India is a hot place

Because India is located close to equator, we have a feeling that is a very hot place, but in reality temperatures in India can vary from +50 C to -50 C. Yes, it can be that hot and cold. The best time to visit India is from October to March, it is pleasant time and winter is warm if you are in north central, central or south India. The northern part of India can be very cold due to Himalayas! Delhi falls in north central India, therefore winters are not so extreme there. At the most, temperature can dip down to 0 C. However, in India people are not used to centralize heating, they simply manage with thick blankets and clothes or sometimes chimneys.

Some of the religious and spiritual places, scenic hill stations and other places of interests and leisure are situated on the Himalayan belt; the best time to go there is from April to September. Do not be surprised if you see snowfall in those months of summer 🙂

8. Indians worship millions of gods.

As a foreigner when you visit a temple in India, you are surprised to see hundreds of gods in one temple, and when I ask my Indian friends, even they do not know who all are them. I used to believe in this myth, until I met some spiritual minded intellectuals.

Indians believe god is only in one form, energy, which is shapeless. Indians find god in anything that has energy. Moreover, all the life-supporting elements and bodies like Sun, moon, earth, water, air, and fire receive immense respect and sacred place among the hearts of Indians. This is the reason why Indians do not consider animals inferior to humans. Animals are equally worshipped and revered in India, and are inseparable part of Indian culture. Apart from believing in god as the form of energy, Indians believe in the concept of power sharing. They believe in Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesh who have the power of generating life, operating life, and destroying life respectively. The concept of power sharing, which is very new in the western world, existed for tens of thousands of years in Indian culture.

The idols that we see in the temples are actually the people who have actually lived in some period of history. For e.g. Ram and Krishna were actually kings. Ram was the king of Ayodhya and Krishna was the king of Dwarka. Their deeds and their philosophy was so impressive that Indians consider them as the avatar of Vishnu and they are revered and idolized even until today. It is just like how in Russia we idolize Lenin. That is why, if you go to South India, you see some other “gods”, if you go to North Indian mountains you see each village has its own “goddess” associated with some historical incidence around the village.

9. India is full of diseases and snakes

If you are planning a trip to India, it is likely your friends, your personal doctors will scare you about diseases in India like cholera, diarrhoea, malaria and dengue, and your travel agent will insist you to take extra health insurance and medicines especially for the trip. However, once you land in India you will see, while some part of it is true, mostly it is a big hype. You will be fine and healthy if you drink packaged mineral water and eat from the right places. Not that native Indians eat from the wrong places just that their immunity system is stronger than ours is and they can resist more diseases than we can.

Malaria and dengue are indeed some scary diseases, which can be avoided if you avoid the rainy season and stay in good places.  Other diseases can be avoided if you drink packaged mineral water. It is good to be cautious, but not good to be scared. So come to India and experience this land of colours and cultural diversity.

You will find snakes only if you head near to the forests, or if you go to an unmaintained park or garden or maybe if you encounter a snake charmer on the street. India has some of the poisonous snakes of the world, but the snakes that you encounter in parks and gardens may not be poisonous at all. In fact, I have never seen a snake in India other than in the zoo and once in the park, it was small and scared and hid himself 🙂

10. All Indians are vegetarians

Again applying my first point here, you cannot generalize. There are as much non-vegetarians in India as vegetarians. I do not know the exact percentage, but eating chicken, fish and meat is now more common in India than ever before. Majority of the people in India do not prefer to eat beef, as cows are considered very revered. However, Indian vegetarian food is not boring as we think. It is not all about salads, Indian curries and vegetables can be made in such a way that we cannot even think. The food is very interesting here and can be very spicy for the foreigners, but worth trying it 🙂

Russian by roots, global citizen by choice. In love with India and Indian culture, love to report everything from politics to military news. Against the controlled media.

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The best site to watch movies

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Staying at home is considered one of the most difficult things to do in this world because finding something that can keep people quiet or distracted is really hard. We can say, the internet is a really useful tool that certainly could help us a lot. It offers a million of opportunities to find whatever we want to search for. It could be considered ones of the best ways of entertainment at the present time.

So, for those who like to use the internet to investigate and be updated, we could also say, all you need to know, all the information is at your fingertips. However, there are other people that also like to watch series or movies because they do not have the time to go to the cinema or they do not simply like it.

There are different internet sites that offer the most extensive movies or series catalog. You could find the oldest until the newest one, no matter the quality. But, according to different people, they do not have the opportunity to download all the movies they want to watch, maybe by system requirements or something simple as they don’t like it.

That is the principal reason why streaming sites are really important because they offer movies, documentaries to keep their users happy. Another reason is, they do not have publicity that sometimes it could be annoying for some users.

The best streaming site

Finding a site to watch movies is really hard and sometimes impossible for some of us. But there are sites that offer us the best experience like Movies123. As simple as his name, this site has one of the most intuitive designs that results intuitive and simple to use for their users. They can find the movie no matter the genre, release year or author, you just simple, knowing some information, you could find it.

If you are one of those who enjoy being at home, invite some friends, family or stay at your bedroom resting in your bed with your pet watching a movie, this is the answer. You do not need to download the movie anymore. The only thing you need is an Ethernet connection, that’s all.

Movies123, the window for movie lovers

Here, you can find the most popular movies in English in high definition and totally free. As other pages where you have to pay to enjoy a subscription, this page offers their users one of the best experiences for streaming lovers.

At home, you could see the featured movies where the image and a short resume of a ranked movie is shown. Also, navigating at the site, you could see the different, most popular and more ranked movies at the present. But, if you are looking for something different you can simply go to the genres menu and click over the different movie genres to search for something different that, obviously, will be of interest to you.

Also, this site offers users the facility of a navigator bar where you can type the name of the movie you want to watch and as magic, it would be in front of your eyes, ready for enjoyment of new experiences and why not, a pleased one too.

The most popular

This page is known for English speakers as one of the best pages for streaming. Giving trust and quality to their users, you could search any kind of movie, no matter what and find it. The most popular movies of the year and the famous one for the high ranking, good critiques and different awards, are disposed to be watched and also, if you want, you can access with a social account and type a comment or a little review about the movie.

So, you could see movies like Parasites that actually, is the best movie of the year considered by the Oscar´s Awards and also known for winning three other awards the same night and have excellent comments and reviews. A movie with a remarkable impact that you have to watch.

At the same time, the Joker is on the list. Thanks to the Joaquin Phoenix interpretation, this movie is considered one of the best of the last year. You could see and understand the life of an iconic DC Comics character as the Joker from Batman. A movie with an excellent development, it expresses exactly what a movie has to transmit.

But, if you like to watch animated movies, you can also find them. We already known, Disney is one of the most popular industries in the world of animated films that is actually known for their excellent stories and productions. You can find the different movies given by this important industry of cinema.

Just, enjoy yourself. Do some pop-corns and watch a movie.

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A site to watch full movies

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Finding a site to watch a full movie results really hard, especially if you want to see the current one. Certainly, finding movies in their original language is easier than searching in languages like Spanish, Arab or maybe Greek or Russian but it is not impossible.

However, the problem for some people is turning around the site. Most people are identified by the page where they watch a movie. They look for the best one and the one that offers the best option to watch it online or maybe, download it, only if they want.

So, if you are those who search for the most popular site to stay at home on a weekend and watch the most recent movie, the best ranked or an older; you could try with 123movies. Maybe, as many pages, not all the world knows about it but some reviews say that it could be a good choice to search for any kind of movie or maybe a documentary.

The best site to watch stream movies

According to computer requirements, some people do not have the opportunity to download a movie and watch it when they have some free time. Others, depending on their roles in their family or their work, cannot go to the nearest cinema and watch a film. Although, not all movies are still on billboard for example, it is really difficult to find a ten years premier in an actual cinema, maybe it could be considered impossible and that is one of the advantages that an Ethernet connection can give you; any kind of information at your fingertips.

That allows some people the opportunity to watch their preferred movie in streaming. When we talk about this, we immediately take reference of the availability to watch a movie without downloading it. We have to remark on a good Ethernet connection and a good transfer of data packages. Likewise, users just simply select what movie they want to see and see it. Simply.

But the biggest question is where could I watch stream movies for free? We already know of different private sites where you might pay for a subscription to enjoy the service without any kind of possibility to watch it for free. However, we can recommend 123movies , which is considered by many people and has some reviews, as one of the best pages to watch movies in live stream. So, if you have not had a preferred page yet, this site could be the best option to begin.

Simple to use

The developers offer their users a design really simple and intuitive to use. No matter your age, accessing the site, you can see the most popular and searched movies. Also, if the main page does not offer the movie what you are looking for, you can go to a specific genre and begin a specific search. Always, this kind of division allows users to find and see movies according to a specific class.

Nevertheless, as any page developed, it offers the navigator bar where typing the name of the film you can directly look for it and watch it. So, watching a movie is never simple as before.

The most popular movies

Every site is known for offering their users a specific quantity of a specific genre. It is not really common, all sites give you the opportunity to find the most common action movie until the less known animated one. Also, the ones who offer this, are private and you have to pay for a subscription.

123movies combines freedom with variety. You can find the most recent and better ranked films inside the cinema world. Here, you can watch, also, the movies that are still on billboard and enjoy a great experience in your home´s comfort.

Movies like Parasite that actually is the best movie of the year considered by the Oscar´s Awards and the community that ranked with high reviews; also, a film that won other awards and is a worldwide success. But, this is not the only one because you can find the Joker too.

The life of the most loved villain of DC Comics, a movie that allows Joaquin Phoenix to be recognized as the best actor of the year with a remarkable effort. Although, if you like animated movies, you can find all movies written and produced by Disney that is considered as the best company of animated movies, giving us the best films with good teachings, recommended for children.

So, if you are planning to spend some time watching the best movies of this year or maybe, previous years, you can use this site and look for the very extended list that they offer us. Just enjoy yourself, buy some pop-corns and get comfortable because this will be one of the most pleasurable experiences of your entire life.

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The films you can’t miss in 2020

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If the year is over and you didn’t have time to watch the best movies left at the end of the decade, don’t worry. Thanks to streaming websites like movie4k you can access the best films at any time, to watch them for the first time or relive them. The year 2019 left some pretty strong titles, and for every movie lover, it’s a must to see them.

Globalization has had a substantial impact on filmmaking, and although markets outside of Hollywood are expanding, the academy had been quite adamant about segregation. However, these barriers have been breaking down. Both in terms of culture and topics to be dealt with on the big screen. So there is a great diversity in the most memorable films of the end of the decade.

El Hoyo

Released in November 2019, this Spanish horror film tells the story of a futuristic vertical prison and the lives of its prisoners, or rather, their survival. 

The central axis of the film revolves around resources, more specifically food, which is brought down through the prison floors. The point of conflict is found in the distribution of the cells, being vertical, the resources that reach the upper cells in one piece, reach the lower ones without anything, making the coexistence a struggle for survival and sanity. 

The horror genre is not known for its messages, but “El Hoyo” is a social critique of an ingenious and claustrophobic form. Making a difference in its genre and being excellently performed by Galder Gaztelu-Urrutia is a title that although not as popular, cannot be missed.

Uncut Gems

Adam Sandler surprised everyone with the Netflix production directed by Benny and Josh Safdie which, although released in 2020, is on the verge of a new decade. We return to an unusual genre to catalogued among the best films, the black comedy. Uncut Gems tells the story of a jeweller who, after making a bet, has to deal with a series of obstacles to obtain the desired gain. 

The premise alone does not seem impressive it seems to give rise to a comedy of errors, but nothing could be further from the truth. The film is schizoid, with an unstoppable pace that lets viewers experience the most vivid anxiety of the events that attack the protagonist. 

I lost my body

Animation cannot be missing, despite being a type of cinema finally relegated to “cinema for children” the reality is that within animation there are as many genres as in the cinema. In the French animation film, “I lost my body” directed by Jérémy Clapin, one of these cases is evident where animated cinema used to tell a story that goes beyond.

The film tells two stories, that of Naoufel, a young man with a rather miserable life who decides to change his way of living by falling in love and a hand that escapes looking for his body. The film takes place between these two stories and interwoven with memories that end up uniting the stories.

The premise may seem to be that of surrealist cinema, but when you watch the film the message is quite clear, but the curious narrative and symbolism make it one of the best of the year. 

The Irishman

Martin Scorsese’s return title must necessarily be on your list. Bringing together legends like Robert De Niro, Al Pacino and Joe Pesci was a film that promised a lot, and it certainly delivered. A gangster film that delves into topics such as the relationship between organized crime and politics through high-level performances.

A film that is not only entertaining and interesting but also allows us to reflect on the passage of time as the protagonist narrates it many years after the events that take place in addition to the topics covered by organized crime and its operation.

Joker

The superhero genre is one of the most sought-after and has opened large franchises creating more comic book lovers. Still, after so many deliveries, nobody expected a film like “Joker”. Directed by Todd Phillips who makes this film an open tribute to the cinema of Scorsese and with the masterful performance of Joaquin Phoenix rewrite the history of the antagonist of Batman in a raw and real way.

The film touches on themes that are parallel to social reality, the inefficiency of public policies, social discontent, the marginality in which people with mental problems live with low resources, and social and political indifference. The film breaks with the limits that haunt superhero films and which Watchmen had not dared to cross, opening up new possibilities for the genre.

Parasite

We end the list with the best film of 2019, the Korean film by Boon Joon-ho that although it could be called “black comedy” the film jumps between genres as it advances and changes the branch of it. Parasite is a film that surprises and shocks the viewer because as it progresses, it completely transformed. 

The story revolves around the Kim family, a low-income family living in a poor, low-lying area of the city. When the eldest son Gi woo gets a job at the home of the prestigious Park family, the story of Kim’s struggle for social climbing begins and triggers all the events that end up revealing to the viewer who the parasites are.

The end of the decade left a large number of films entertaining, perfectly executed and above all, with many social themes. The cinema is a reflection of the times, and it is essential to watch movies that mark an era.

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