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Usha - Hinduism

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Growing up as a Hindu and following our faith was difficult when we moved to England (1968), there were no temples nearby for us to pray in or places of worship, so this happened at home, with a small shrine, stories of the Gita being learnt and taught by family elders and my parents. There were no big celebrations to mark Diwali, Navrati, Holi, major events in our lives, but keeping faith was what got us through some dark times, hard times, turning the other cheek, carry on believing.

Over time very slowly things were changing, I remember so clearly a time when we got 9 days of celebration of Navrati in a classroom hall, the music, the dancing, the prayers to celebrate our faith, the stories of Rama and Sita. It was uplifting and soulful.

A few more years and hitting an age, I started questioning our faith, asking questions my parents followed without questioning their parents and this opened up a world of more questions. I fasted because my mum said I should, but the reasoning didn’t sit with me.

I feel particularly blessed to have parents who encouraged our questioning and taking from our faith the bits we needed and related to. We followed this through with our own children, giving them the right to choose to follow our faith the way that suits them, which they do, being proud of being Hindu.

However things happen in our lives to question that belief, today I pray everyday, in my little shrine at home but my belief always goes back to a saying my late husband use to say ... Having faith is simple, it’s about being a good person.