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Old 21-11-2011, 10:02 PM posted to soc.culture.indian,,alt.religion.hindu,,alt.animals.ethics.vegetarian,alt.animals.rights.promotion,soc.culture.usa
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A Hindu American's Thanksgiving

Hindu Press International
Hinduism Today
November 26, 2010

By Saumya Arya Haas

Source -

USA, November 24, 2010 (by Saumya Arya Haas) - I am vegetarian. I am
American, but there is no turkey on my table. At Thanksgiving, my
house today is as confusing, chaotic and lively as my childhood. But
it's not "turkey day." Traditionally, we make lasagna. I'm not sure
how that started. But it's perfect: an Italian dish, a Hindu cook, an
American table.

I also make the whole, expected, shebang: mashed potatoes, sweet
potatoes, corn, cranberry sauce, about four different kinds of pie
and chai. My family would rebel if there was no chai.

My family experience of being Hindu is deeply rooted in
inclusiveness, social equity and community service. Chai-party
values, if you like. Giving is part of being thankful: We acknowledge
our own bounty and share with those who have less. This year I am
achingly aware of those who have less, those who struggle to put
everyday food on the table. I can't imagine the anxiety that
Thanksgiving, with all its demands of abundance, must bring to those
who have no abundance. I am shamed by my shallow vision of

Bounty is not only the material: it is the strength of our hearts,
the power of our intellect, the wisdom of our traditions, the poetry
of our being. Community is the communion of sharing these things.
Sharing means giving as well as receiving. We are intertwined; our
actions reverberate and echo and come around again. No one only gives
or only receives.

Everyone brings something to the table.

On Thanksgiving, I have been surprised by unanticipated guests,
interesting food, odd drinks, badly-behaved pets, talented teenagers,
amazing stories and conversations both warm and contentious. More
than anything, I have been surprised by the thrill of the unexpected
amid the familiarity of ritual. My expectations are always

I have to surrender my image of perfection. The reality is far
messier, but it is warm and real, unpredictable and delicious. It is
the abundance at my table.

There's pumpkin pie on the table and chai on the stove. This is
America, after all. We create our own truth, if there even is a truth
at all. We are all poor in something. We share with those who have
less. Everyone brings something. We are imperfect, real, enriched.

More at:

Hinduism Today

Jai Maharaj, Jyotishi
Om Shanti

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