Rudra Maharaj navigates feeling disconnected from many of the communities around them due to racism, ableism, homophobia, and cultural differences, even while embracing the gods whose stories show them that queerness is compatible with Hinduism.
In this episode, Rudra discusses their family's unique ways of practicing Hinduism as descendants of the indentured Indian diaspora living in Canada by way of Fiji; how Shiva gave them their name; and how being disabled intersects with their faith and family life.
Find Rudra on Twitter @RY_Maharaj
(0:00 - 3:00) Intro - explaining that the interview was held over text message; Avery's sister helps read the transcript (3:01 - 5:49) Rudra's time at university - disconnect within a largely white and abled department; studying history because of their family's history in the indentured Indian diaspora (5:50 - 8:20) Rudra's Hinduism - about the world, connecting to family and tradition, as much as about the gods (8:21 - 15:07) Rudra's name, queer stories of the gods, and discussing differences between Hinduism and Christianity (15:08 - 18:36) Disability - for a lot of Hindus, it's the consequence of actions in a past life; Rudra's family accommodates their disability (18:37 - 21:21) Wrapping up
The theme song come from "Aetherium" by Leah Horn. Also used in this episode is the instrumental version of "Can't Find" by MotherHood.