25
May , 2017
Thursday

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India, since the earliest origins of religion and faith, has been known as the “melting pot of religions” in the world. Many a religion has had its birth in India and still continues to have strong roots here. Religion is accorded so much importance in India, that it isn’t confined merely to places of worship and religious importance, but stretches way beyond to the extent of being incorporated into political agendas and manifestos, names of people that are often christened after various gods and goddesses, and television channels and soaps, which in an endearing effort to increase their TRP ratings, use religion as a gimmick to play with the sensibilities of people. In such a scenario, where people of a country are nearly fanatical about religion, it isn’t likely that the fashion fraternity would stay behind and not vie for its share of the pie as well!

Rudraksh beads as a style statement Credit: fashioncurry.com

Rudraksh beads as a style statement Credit: fashioncurry.com

Today, fashion and religion surely strike a chord with each other at some level, be it through the Om, Swastik or other religious verses-printed Kurtas and T-Shirts, Rudraksh beads and Tulsi Malas, the Celtic Cross/Crucifix or the ever-famous Sikh Kada. But here is the unusual part; these styles aren’t a rage with just the section of the society that is spiritually inclined. In fact a majority of these styles are in vogue only because some people consider them to be “cool” and “trendy”. Wondering how religion can ever get trendy? Wonder no more! It is the Gen-X’s way of saying “Devil may care!!” Says Aditya, who is spotted wearing a Cotton Kurta with the verses of the Gayatri Mantra printed on it, “I absolutely love this style… I think it’s pretty cool and comfortable. Moreover it’s the IN thing now!” Ask him if it is for spiritual reasons that he is wearing what he is wearing and he bursts out laughing. He says, “No way! I’m wearing this only because it makes me look stylish. Religion-wise, I’m agnostic… so no (religious) beliefs as such!” A similar opinion is shared by Nikhil, who even sports a Swastik Jhola. He says, “Some people think I’m eccentric, but then I really like this style of dressing. It has a very casual feel to it.”

The Sikh Kada Credit: Whyso Sirius

The Sikh Kada Credit: Whyso Sirius

This fad of linking religion with fashion has also managed to promote inter-cultural links within our country and also globally. The best example to illustrate this is Archana, who is a Tamilian by birth, a Hyderabadi by education and a hard-core fan of “religious accessories” by nature. One look at her and you wonder what exactly her religion could be, and that’s when the realization of religion being universal and God being omnipotent dawns upon you. She has on a T-shirt praising Lord Ganesha, the Hindu Elephant God, wears a Sikh Kada on her right hand wrist, a Feng Shui crystal on her left wrist, an ISKCON Tulsi mala round her neck along with a Celtic Cross pendant strung to a long chain and a single anklet on her right foot! If you thought that was a long list in itself, then wait until you hear this… she even plans to get a tattoo done in Urdu! She says, “Every religion and culture has something nice to offer in it. This, according to me, is one of the ways of embracing the best of all cultures. It gives me a sense of peace of having stood above the communal disturbances happening in the society. Plus these accessories work as my lucky charms; especially the crystal, Kada and the Tulsi mala. I have them on all the time!

Celtic Cross Credit: www.irishimports.com

Celtic Cross Credit: www.irishimports.com

Cynics and various other religious groups might choose to disagree, but it is quite a well-acknowledged fact that religion and fashion have nearly become inseparable today. We live in a generation that is pro-choice. Fashion and religious beliefs have become personal choices that are judgements of our mind. We choose our thoughts just as well as we choose our clothes. Maybe that’s why they say, “Wear your Attitude!!”

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