what an interesting country + what a great introduction by our tour vital guide kamalesh gogna:
rule no. 1: there are 5 important things when you travel (and live?) in india: patience, patience, patience, patience (= 4 different levels of patience, of course) + tolerance
rule no. 2: forget everything what you have heard/seen about india and start exploring by yourself. why? because the sensation hungry mainstream media often concentrates on the 1% of strange/sad situations or exceptions and not on the average normal live ...
on our 16-days-journey we have been mainly in the desert state of rajasthan, but we have spent also 2 nights in uttar pradesh (agra + taj mahal) and two days in delhi (but unfortunately we haven't seen the mahatma gandhi museum / monument). anyway, we have visited many unesco world cultural heritage sites and the indian wall against muslim aggressors (yes, indian and not chinese wall) => so nice :-)
hinduism teaches that the result of former actions is our today's life and the result of today's actions is our future. btw, our body is the result of the food we have had before as well ... if mcdonalds knew :-) ... doing good brings good future etc (karma). the goal of hindus is to step out of the karma cycle and thus the join of the current individual soul with the (higher) global collective soul
3 main hindu gods brahma (creator of the world, his transport animal is a goose, he has 4 heads and 4 useful tools like book + rosenkranz), his 2nd wife is wisdom);
book GEETA about the dialogue between god krishna and prince Anjun in which krishna answers price's 100 questions and explains the philosophy of life
indian castes system: Kasten- (Geburt/Abstammung) und klassensystem (Berufsgruppen) nach wie vor offiziell bestätigt (bei der Volkszählung 2011 kastenzugehörigkeit wieder eingeführt) und bei Staatsposten/-Jobs gibt es sogar quoten für bestimmte Kasten .... Es gibt 4 Klassen und die 'schmutzigen' unberührbaren (müllmänner / strassenkehrer, metzger, totenverbrenner, Schuster + 1)
indian school system with 3 languages (hindi + english + one of the 8 other main (regional) languages. even if a complimentary (for free) education is in many cases possible, education became a multi billions dollar business in india (= a product) which not all people can afford. there is also huge competition and unfortunately recently also a high suicide rate among indian students
the 800 years of muslim and 200 years of english occupation where the indian culture & education were systematically destroyed (e.g. koran schools instead of former universities) have turned a highly developed and highly educated nation into a nation of analphabets. in time of indian independency 1947 (or 1949?) there have been approximately 80% analphabets. today less than 30%, i think.
indian life expectancy? many 63 and women 66 (or so similar)
our stops: delhi - mandawa - rat temple karni mata in deshnoke close to bikaner ~ bikaner - jaisalmer - jodhpur - jain temple in ranakpur - udaipur - bambora - jaipur - tiger reserve ranthambore - agra - delhi