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5 Hindu Traditions to Help reduce Coronavirus


The novel Coronavirus (Covid-19) is spread by touching and close proximity (via Sneezing etc.).  It has now been declared a global pandemic and even celebrities including Tom Hanks, Daniele Rugani and Sophie Grégoire Trudeau have caught it. It is a time when people across the world are adopting ancient Hindu traditions which are scientifically designed to reduce the spread of disease.

1. Namaste
Namaste as a salutation goes a long way back in Indian culture. It is the traditional way to meet and greet in India. Recently Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu recommended that people greet each other with Namaste. Other world leaders and ordinary citizens have been following suit.
Unlike a handshake, there is no transfer of any form of bacteria or virus since there is no physical contact with the other person with a Namaste. Namaste has been derived from two Sanskrit words- Nama, meaning bow and te, meaning you. It means one bows down to the divinity in the other person. It is a beautiful Hindu Tradition.

Also see Goodbye handshakes, Welcome Namaste!
and ‘India ahead of curve’, says Trump.

2. Vegetarianism
A vegetarian diet is not only good for the planet, it also is good for health. Vegetarianism is followed by a vast majority of Hindus. It not only reduces the changes of obesity and heart disease, it also reduces the risk of viral and infections caused by animal meat. It is also helpful in reducing the risk of cancer.
The new coronavirus is in the same family as SARS, MERS and the common cold, linked to animal flesh. Experts theorize that:

“the outbreak might have originated in a wet market in Wuhan, China, where humans have direct contact with live animals as well as animal flesh. In these cramped markets, animals are slaughtered and skinned right in front of customers, aerosolizing all types of particles that could lead to infection.”

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3. Turmeric (and other Indian Spices)
Turmeric or Haldi (in Hindi) is one the most effective nutritional supplement in existence. It has powerful medicinal properties. It has been used for thousands of years as a spice and medicinal supplement in India. It can be very effective in preventing the spread of Coronavirus since it boosts immunity. It has powerful anti-inflammatory effects and is a very strong antioxidant as well. Other foods such as Ginger and Garlic, commonly used in Indian cooking, are very good immunity boosters.

Though many people may be exposed to the virus, only some will get sick. This depends on immunity. These are not foolproof remedies, but simply good diet habits to improve immunity.

4. Pranayama
Pranayam are various breathing techniques in the Hindu Yogic system aimed at balancing the various airs in the body, thereby creating a healthy mind and body. Regular practice of pranayam helps in boosting immunity thereby preventing an individual from acquiring and further transferring any viral or bacterial disease.

5. Cremation
In China, people who have died of Coronavirus are being cremated swiftly, in order to check the further spread of the virus. Preserving the bodily remains of the deceased, as in a burial, may allow the virus to breed and spread further.

Hindus do not believe in resurrection of the body and the reuniting of each soul with its physical body. They place no importance on preserving the corpse, which is the intent of burial in Christianity and Islam. The Hindu belief in reincarnation gives assurance that death is merely the soul’s release from the current life. 

Cremation is scientific and efficient, while graveyards for burial are increasingly occupying precious real estate on the planet.

It is ironic that it is a global pandemic like the Coronavirus which is bringing forth the value of cremation and many other Hindu practises. The world is returning to Hindu roots.