Critically acclaimed for its cultural heritage and integrity, India lives up its name as one of the oldest civilisations in the world. Preserving this rich ancestry is not an easy task, but we, Indians have been doing it for ages.
However, most of us tend to forget the very reason why India is being looked up to, by many countries. For the uninitiated, historians ink India as the birthplace for many inventions. Even the very fundamental number system was devised in India - (not to forget the famous discovery of Aryabhatta - the number 0, "Zero")!
It is the only time when the world will regard someone who finds fascination in Zero, a Hero. I will stop beating around the bushes, and cut right into the chase.
There are a lot of things that came into existence in India or say, take inspiration from India.
The influx of foreigners in India during the scorching heat of Summer can be justified by their love for Ayurveda. In places like Kerala, tourists hunt for Ayurvedic clinics in Summer to have a relaxing afternoon under the sun, after dipping themselves in the medicinal oil.
The very idea of treating chronic illness without prescription drugs might sound dismissive, but Ayurvedic practitioners have been doing it for more than 5000 years! Ayurveda has an edge over Allopathy as the procedure poses a lower to no threat of side effects, as opposed to Allopathy which often comes with a lot of them.
This is because the medicines are derived from nature, and are administered with the core principle that the Body, Mind and Spirit are intertwined. In a way, we can claim that Ayurvedic applies to all, irrespective of a person's medical history and allergies.
2. Dye Fixers - Mordant
A crucial part of the finishing process, within the Textile Manufacturing method, is Dyeing. It is not that the fabric immersed in a pile of liquid would soak up the colour. For the colour to stick on to the fabric, there is a process called Mordanting. If it wasn't for the Indus Valley Civilisation and the artisan around that period in India, we would have been wearing cloth with poor quality of colour.
Dye fixers or Mordants helps build the much-needed link between the dye and the fabric. In scientific terms, it helps to form coordination between the dye and the substrate.
Although buttoned-up Indians speak less of mordants, we might open up drastically whenever innovations such as Buttons are credited to our Motherland!
Yes, Buttons originated in India - back in Indus Valley Civilisation - roughly around 2000 BCE, albeit a very humble beginning. The first button believed to be made in seashells, and their purpose was purely for the sake of embellishing their attire. Then, buttons became a means for fastening clothes - and undoubtedly, striding the fashion industry into what we see now.
This should be a no-brainer - I could have passed this since it is very obvious - but, not even a mention of Yoga in this list would look like Watch without needles.
Along with Ayurveda, Yoga promotes healthy living, and needless to say has its origins in India - which date back to Lord Shiva, known to be the first Yoga Guru. Since its inception, the world welcomed Yoga with both arms open, eyes closed and legs crossed over, with each foot touching the opposite thighs! Moreover, June 21st is earmarked as the International Yoga Day.
5. Natural Fibers
There was a time when Greeks and Romans traded spices(the equivalent of Gold at that time) for Cotton produced in India. Best of natural fibers - Wool, Jute and Cotton all have their base in India. Purest wool - Cashmere Wool comes from Kashmir and is still preferred for making Woolen shawls.
Needless to say, it was during the Indus Valley Civilisation that they flourished - having cotton, taking threads of it and then producing dresses - may sound easy, but it was almost alien to people at that time.
We have talked about how Natural Fibers was harvested during the Indus Valley Civilisation. What if I tell you, we have yet another invention, more of improvisation to the natural cotton - Calico! Ancestors trace its origins to Calicut, now Kozhikode - a part of Kerala. The specialty of Calico is that it is much coarser than the Cotton - as it is unprocessed cotton at its core, making it durable.
Needless to say, India garnered worldwide stardom due to the rich history in innovations and inventions.
As Indians, it is a matter of pride for us to flaunt our Motherland's creations! With a warehouse boasting hundreds of fabrics inspired by the Indian Lore we are striving to preserve the same. When our future generations ask where you got such intricate craftmanship on your dress, you can say with a wink, it happens only in India!