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Author: Suzanne Held
Photographer(s): Suzanne Held
Publisher: Editions Atlas
ISBN/UPC (if available): 8173101124
Composed of twenty-two states and nine territories, Bharat the Union of India is a multicolored mosaic of people, languages, customs, dynasties, religious beliefs, Philosophies, architecture and painting styles.
First time travelers often feel lost in this heterogeneous jumble, but the disparate appearance of India soon gives way to a profound harmony bringing together and reconciling the most clashing dichotomies. An Indian, whether from Kashmir, Bengal, or the Dravidian regions, always lives in accord with the region where he was born, with its climate and culture, and with himself.
Underlying the diversity of languages and races of India is a perceptible unity composed of an infinite number of shared attitudes, legends, myths, tables and a love of nature that transcends difference and softens contrasts. Religion, in spite of the infinite variety of gods and heroes, participates as well in this profound felling that grounds every being, gesture and place.
Whether in the solitude of Rajasthan or the busy throngs of Bombay and Delhi, amongst the untouchables in the south or the Brahmins of ancient Varanasi, the same atmosphere of piety mitigated by concern for daily ritual pervades this vast country and conditions the lives of the people, from birth to death.