Kumbh Mela - The Most Wonderful Sight in India?

Posted by Daniel Ratheiser • Wednesday, March 24. 2010 • Category: People and Places
“What is the most wonderful sight in India – the strangest thing to be seen in all this land, where so much is strange? For my part, I am inclined to doubt whether anything can be witnessed more impressive and picturesque, more pregnant, too, with meaning and significance, than the Kumbh Mela, or great Pilgrim Fair, which is held, once every twelve years, where the waters of the Ganges and Jumna meet, below the wall of Allahabad. Until you have look upon one of these tremendous gatherings of humanity many aspects of Indian life and character must be hidden from you.”
Sydney Low during the visit of the Prince and Princess of Wales to India (1906)

© Enrico Fabian (www.enrico-fabian.com) for "Die Zeit"

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Experience Syria - Cultural Immersion in the Arab World

Posted by Angélique Vassout • Tuesday, March 23. 2010 • Category: People and Places
Going abroad as a part of the curriculum has become more and more common and is nowadays a key distinguishing factor in your CV. Most European students choose to stay inside Europe thanks to the Erasmus programme or go to North America, but others prefer to leave the beaten track and travel to more challenging parts of the world, in order to discover a new way of life, learn a foreign language, and experience by themselves what global diversity is.

Ummayad Mosque - "The Grand Mosque of Damascus"

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The Jaipur Tamasha - Traditional Folk Art in a Modern Context

Posted by Stefan Heil • Tuesday, March 9. 2010 • Category: People and Places
Some 250 years ago, during the rule of Aurangzeb in India, it wasn't the best of times for music and the arts. Aurangzeb, adhering to a very orthodox brand of Islam (in contrast to previous Mogul emperors like Akbar, Jahangir and Shah Jahan), is remembered for his uncompromising religious views, such as the discouraging of singing or music for Hindus and Muslims alike. When musicians lost their imperial patronage, they started looking for more supportive environments.

Photo by: Ben Weiss (http://benjaminrweiss.wordpress.com). All rights reserved.

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Dilli or Dili?

Posted by Gülcan Durak • Tuesday, March 9. 2010 • Category: People and Places
Perhaps "dili" (= from the heart, cordial, close, intimate) is a good expression to describe Delhi but there are probably a hundred things I love more. For example a delicious chocolate fudge brownie, which tastes so good that you even wish you could reincarnate as one. What else…

Ok, wait, maybe there aren’t a hundred things. Actually, I don’t think I can name anything else, because there is simply nothing more. But let me start with some hard facts about this incredible city. Delhi, locally known as Dilli, is a city with approximately 15 million inhabitants and is India’s most populous city after Mumbai. It consists of Delhi, Delhi Cantonment, and New Delhi, the last one being the capital of India. About 82 % of the population in Dilli are Hindus. The second largest religious community are Muslims with 12 %, Sikhs are 4 %, and Jains and Christians are around 1 % each. The main languages spoken here are Hindi and English (the official languages of India), as well as Punjabi and Urdu.

© Knowledge Must 2010

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Playing "Fasenacht" – Carnival in Germany

Posted by Christian Emmerich • Tuesday, March 9. 2010 • Category: People and Places
“Fasenacht” is one of the many local German expressions for carnival which, depending on the region, have developed more or less from climatic, historical and religious origins. You can find this period of celebrations in almost every Christian culture. However, there exist comparable festivals in other cultures as well, such as Holi, Dol Yatra or Kamadhana in India. Generally speaking, they are all about celebrating the end of winter and trying to disperse the bad spirits, for example, with colourful costumes or masks. But today these celebrations aren’t reduced to the locals alone. Many have turned into multicultural events in which everyone can participate.

The Celtic-Alemannic Carnival in South-West Germany

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