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Thread: An Indian vegan house warming ceremony

  1. #1
    Kiran's Avatar
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    Thumbs up An Indian vegan house warming ceremony

    I've just been back from a holiday in South India and I thought I'll share some exciting developments that happened whilst I was there. Besides being a holiday, the main purpose of my visit was to help out my parents in celebrating a grand house warming ritual..... THE VEGAN WAY!

    The event also coincides with my parents going vegan!! It did deserve a grand celebration. The rituals for the house warming of the newly built house was done in accordance to Hindu style but without the milk, ghee or honey and used alternatives. Every single aspect of the rituals were vegan. The two day long ritual was attended by over 70 people including relatives and friends. Everything starting from the morning coffee till dinner were all vegan. Over 50 liters of soy milk was used. We had to specially buy many kgs of vegan sugar.

    It just took us some time to explain the catering company of our requirements. But once they got the concept, they were glad to acknowledge and supported the cause. Also the priests were very cooperative and banned milk/ghee in the rituals. I am delighted to say it all went well.

    The most important outcome of this event is that we got some excellent press coverage. Reporters and camera-man from a regional TV channel got interested and covered a part of the event. They shot an interview with me and with the president of the Indian Vegan society Mr. Shankar (shannade on this forum). We had to explain what it was being a vegan and the alternatives we use to follow an ethical life-style. The interview was aired the same evening. Hopefully, it would have many people thinking in a country where Veganism is very remote and ignored.

    I also had a chance to meet a few Indian vegans including Mr. Shankar who delivered a lecture and a presentation to the guests on the truths about the Indian Dairy Industry. We timed the presentation just before the lunch so people were forced to stay. Shankar's presentation was received well and people watched the video with disgust. After the presentation, Shankar was swarmed with curious guests who collected literatures and wanted to gather more info. From reports coming in, some guests have already decided to boycott milk. Thats a start.

    It has made my parents very happy as they wanted the event to be used to spread awareness of veganism. Its been a very successful event. The lunch was grand and had over 30 delicacies and people could not believe there was no dairy in it.

    I could write forever about this fab event. But I don't wish to blog here. There are a few photos however...

    The following photos, show Shankar giving his presentation using a projector. We din't have enough chairs to accommodate over 50 people. So we had to make them sit down.


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    Life is like a boomerang: What goes around comes around - "Karma"rocks!

  2. #2
    Kiran's Avatar
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    Default Re: An Indian vegan house warming ceremony

    Shankar and another Indian Vegan Mr. Praveen an advocate from Bangalore.


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    Shankar and Mr. Majunath a Vegan Yoga teacher
    Life is like a boomerang: What goes around comes around - "Karma"rocks!

  3. #3
    [LMNOP] ellaminnowpea's Avatar
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    Default Re: An Indian vegan house warming ceremony

    Woah Kiran, thats so great. I admire both of you so much, especially for practicing veganism in such a remote area somewhat new to veganism. Glad you shared and influenced so many people!
    I am not afraid of storms, for I am learning how to sail my ship. ~ Alcott

  4. #4
    Making changes Est's Avatar
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    Default Re: An Indian vegan house warming ceremony

    That's awesome, Kiran! How fantastic that your parents have become vegan... and that you've all had this opportunity to spread the word.

    EDIT: *30* delicacies? Yummy. Guess my invite got lost in the post, huh?!

  5. #5
    cobweb
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    Default Re: An Indian vegan house warming ceremony

    good one, kiran!

  6. #6
    cedartree cedarblue's Avatar
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    Default Re: An Indian vegan house warming ceremony

    an excellent thread and news kiran!

    ever thought of staying in india?

  7. #7
    ♥♥♥ Tigerlily's Avatar
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    Default Re: An Indian vegan house warming ceremony

    That sounds awesome!

    Shankar is my boyfriend's middle name, hehe.
    Peace, love, and happiness.

  8. #8

    Default Re: An Indian vegan house warming ceremony

    That's just ace Kiran.
    Way to promote the vegan thing!
    ..but what would they do with all the cows?..

  9. #9
    Kiran's Avatar
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    Default Re: An Indian vegan house warming ceremony

    Thanks everyone!

    Quote cedarblue View Post
    ever thought of staying in india?
    Maybe in the future Cedar.:smile: I think India will be my settlement eventually.

    Although it is easy to be vegan in India diet-wise, it is not too easy to be vegan when to comes to using products. Often, incomplete labeling is problematic in deciding which products are vegan. Veganism is a concept that is in its early stages in India and it will be a long long time before it is widely accepted.

    I hope veganism will be easy for my parents as they were born vegetarians. I find it unbelievable that the same people who were completely against my veganism have suddenly gone vegan. All it takes is the right type of literature and videos and they are enough to motivate a change in people. Over the last 3 years I have been trying very hard for my folks to accept my veganism. But them going vegan is a real mega bonus!
    Life is like a boomerang: What goes around comes around - "Karma"rocks!

  10. #10
    puffin's Avatar
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    Default Re: An Indian vegan house warming ceremony

    Just seen this thread Kiran. Sounds wonderful. So pleased to hear about your parents to.

  11. #11

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    Default Re: An Indian vegan house warming ceremony

    Your vegan house warming is heart-warming too. It has been a wonderful experience to learn about this rare vegan celebration. You made it a really fruitful celebration by showing a presentation on the dairy industry's dirty trade. We are all happy that your parents too became vegans. It is also note worthy that the priests too understood the purpose the did a vegan homa. May veganism triumph!

  12. #12

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    Default Re: An Indian vegan house warming ceremony

    Dear Kiran,

    I live in Bangalore and I need some tips from you.

    1. Whre do you by Soy milk from? Was it used for your vegan coffee/tea?
    2. Did you serve soy milk curd/butter milk? How does it taste?

    We do not have much idea about soy milk or curd. So, please shed some light.

    The reason I ask is every year we celebrate a classical musical get together at my residence. We serve lunch to about 50-60 guests. We would like to have it completely vegan.

    Thanks

  13. #13
    baffled harpy's Avatar
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    Default Re: An Indian vegan house warming ceremony

    Hello kvrangan - I'm not sure if Kiran is around on the forum at the moment, perhaps you could try sending him a private message.

    There seems to be a vegan group in Bangalore http://veganbengaluru.wordpress.com/ so maybe they could also answer your questions.

  14. #14
    Kiran's Avatar
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    Default Re: An Indian vegan house warming ceremony

    Thanks Harpy. Thats right! I don't post here often although I have a browse when I get the time.

    Mr. Kvrangan, I don't live in India anymore. Just keep visiting my family on holiday. My parents have a soya milk machine that I bought for them in the UK. So its not a problem for them.

    You should be able to find Soy milk in Bangalore easily. We found some unflavoured ones in most supermarkets.

    Regarding your question about butter milk, well unfortunately there is no way to make buttermilk in India without a "cheat"!! It all depends on if it is acceptable to you. You will need cultures from cow's milk as it is not possible to get soya cultures in India. Its the process of refining the batches and disposing them off. Eventually the concentration would reduce and you will have a pure soya buttermilk/yoghurt. You will then have the soya cultures you need for further batches.

    I will send you a Private message.
    Life is like a boomerang: What goes around comes around - "Karma"rocks!

  15. #15
    baffled harpy's Avatar
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    Default Re: An Indian vegan house warming ceremony

    Hiya Kiran. Hope you're well!

  16. #16

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    Default Re: An Indian vegan house warming ceremony

    Thanks Kiran for your kind clarifications.

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    Default Re: An Indian vegan house warming ceremony

    hi Kiran,
    been in india as a traveller around 5 times, and, honestly, it IS VERY HARD

  18. #18

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    Default Re: An Indian vegan house warming ceremony

    hi again,
    i was just saying it is very hard to be vegan as a foreigner in restaurants, as a traveller. if i order only dahl, they might want to please me and put some cream in it. Or put ghee, butter, milk in the food. i mean the national drink is chai, i do feel quite out my element there since i became a vegan. What could i say if i am in a dhaba, a road side chack/restaurant...? honestly, everytime i go to india, i kind of loose a bit of my veganism there, which makes me very unhappy. I mean the holiness of the cow is so strong there, I actually feel like i am insulting the people/hinduism/the holy cows, by saying i don't want any kind of dairy...
    What should i say to sound respectfull towards indians and their culture and religion?
    thank you, anyone, who has an idea of what to say...

  19. #19
    Barry's Avatar
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    Default Re: An Indian vegan house warming ceremony

    Hey Free, I think I know what you mean. I've been in India twice and I found it extremely challenging to say the least. I tried my hardest to avoid dairy, but it's almost impossible - I'm sure I unwittingly ate it loads of times. Then there are the situations where you just have to hope for the best, like 30 hour bus journeys (particularly up north) where you stop at dhabas half way, and if you don't eat what they have, you're simply not going to eat at all!

    Personally I'm not too concerned about insulting Indian people by asking for no dairy, I always used to tell them that it was either - a religious thing, or that dairy made me sick. Frankly, I don't think they give a crap one way or another, I've always found Indians to be fairly tolerant of westerners and our funny ways! Anyway, you can probably ignore everything I've said when Kiran gives you the definitive answer to your question...

    When are you going back and where are you hitting this time? I'm mad jealous by the way, I've spent the last two summers there, but this year I can't afford to go (insert the sound of the world's smallest vioin here)
    Todays empires, tomorrows ashes...

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