My first book will be out by end of month. It is titled "I Married My Cousin" and is a set of 20 personal narratives. I sought permission from Markos to add the Daily Kos mast head on the cover and there you see it close to the President. Could have been bolder but the cover designer was already getting antsy with my changes.
I have also included two Daily Kos diaries to the book. One of them is dedicated to Kossacks and to Markos in particular.
I has been a hard and long grind to get it completed, proof read, edited, formatted and converted to ePUB and MOBI.
It should be available on Amazon, B&N, Kobo and Smashwords priced at $2.99. I have another diary with links to those interested. You can also visit my website (still under construction!) next week for details www.srinathrangaswamy.com
Here's are two sample excerpts from my book:
1. 25 Things to do before I Die
The Hindu or Vedic way of life divides a man’s life into four Ashramas or stages:
1. "Brahmacharya" or the student or celibate stage
2. "Grihastha" or the householder stage
3. "Vanaprastha" or the forest dweller or hermit stage
4. "Sanyasa" or renunciation stage
The Grihastha stage is said to end between 40-50 years, leaving me pondering on the hermit and renunciation stages of my life. Adhering to these last two stages has proven the most difficult to most of us as we get enamored of being a householder and wish that it would continue forever. Could I be different?
Just as your start packing for a long journey days before hand, I put together a list of things that I wished to complete before the end of life. When my list grew beyond 25, I started pruning the ones that could be accomplished with lesser planning and effort. Next I started eliminating some materialistic goals already accomplished like cars, houses, retirement nest egg, etc. and tourist spots in the United States like the Niagara, Grand Canyon, Golden Gate Bridge, and Empire State Building, etc.
I then added a deadline to complete each activity, the group it belonged to and the approximate budget or funds to be raised for travel and endowments. I deliberately kept out any work related aspirations and medical surgery or image enhancement techniques and focused purely on those that would give me greater emotional connect and pleasure. For practical purposes, I decided to close the project at 70 years which would give me 25 more years to plan and execute the hermit and renunciation stages of my life.
2. I Married My Cousin!
In the Indian Epic, Mahabharata, Sasirekha, the daughter of Balarama eloped and married Abhimanyu, son of Arjuna. What significance does this hold thousands of years later? This is one of the most quoted examples of cousin marriages in India. How so? Arjuna married Subhadra, sister of Krishna and Balarama. That made Abhimanyu and Sasirekha first cousins and thus started the trend of cousin marriages but, is it legal and medically acceptable?
Even today, there is a debate in India and a few other countries on whether to allow consanguineous or blood related marriages. Over 30 of the 50 US States have banned first cousin marriages but the laws are vague in many States. Many parts of North India disallow any cousin marriages but marriage to a niece (sister’s daughter) or cousin is acceptable in vast parts of South India. However, most Hindus do not accept marriage within the same gotra or lineage.
There is however a distinction on whether the blood relationship is crossed or parallel. Cross is for mother-brother, father-sister and parallel meaning sister-sister and brother-brother. The only form of cousin marriages acceptable with Hindus is cross whereas both are rampant with subcontinent Muslims.
The Daily Kos community has been a god send and am eternally grateful to all bloggers here for the advice and the knowledge gleaned from my visits here.
Any ideas, suggestions for improvement and criticisms are most welcome. Thank you Daily Kos and to all the Progressives around the world for trying to make our life better.