cultural support such a great assembly could not arise or would not be appreciated. While
these sages are the fruit, the culture is the field that nourishes the trees (teachings)
on which they grow. However, Hindu teachers in
the West have brought with them very little of Hindu culture. They have not wanted to
impose their culture on Westerners, who might not appreciate it.
They have been under the impression that some Hindu practices, like
the worship of images, would be looked at unfavorably by Westerners with their aniconic
religious backgrounds, and therefore used as a pretext for rejecting the rest of their
Hence they have stressed yogic and meditation practices and
have even encouraged Westerners to maintain their own cultural and religious identities,
though these might be opposed to the deeper practices they are teaching. The worship of
the Gods and Goddesses, Hindu devotional meditations, pujas and rituals are little known
or understood in the West.