JÉ! India
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Welcome to JÉ! India

Dear visitor!

You have ended up at a site under perpetual construction, written by a Hungarian for Hungarians, about India. I thank you for your visit. The written content of these pages is available only in the Hungarian language. The English-language daughter site IndiCS.InfO (India with Common Sense for the Informed Outsider) is a budding young website that will take a long time to be as complete as this one.

I am publishing various India-related pieces of information, and also promoting a guidebook in a non-conventional style that I am writing in my free time (of which I have none these days, what with maintaining this site and also experiencing a bit of life now and then). This book will not contain hotel prices and tourist site data, but will concentrate on giving the reader sufficient background knowledge on India to get by on his or her own and if not fully understand this culture, at least have a good enough headstart in beginning to understand it.

I encourage common sense and a critical yet open-minded approach to India (as well as to practically everything else except cockroaches). This is why the site is called IndiCS.InfO, which stands for India with Common Sense for the Informed Outsider, the type of person I consider myself and wish to incite others to become. (This works out differently in Hungarian, so don't be surprised that the site logo says different. JÉ - pronounced something like "Yay" in English - is an exclamation of surprise and appreciation; and the letters stand for Common Sense in Hungarian.)

If you would like to advertise on this website, please check out this page. If you are interested in this concept for a book and feel you could help me get it published in English (though even the Hungarian version has only been just begun), please do not hesitate to contact me at admin@jeindia.hu. Also write to me if you would like to see this site completely translated into English and have some ideas about how I could use it to earn money - this sort of motivation is something I sorely need to keep developing the website (and the book).

If you wish to browse photos of India, you can do so without a knowledge of Hungarian. Just click the link saying Képtár on the navigation pane to the left (if you don't see it, click Rovatok first), and then click at random in the main pane. Alternatively, start by clicking the "Picture of the minute" in the header. My gallery will be expanded continuously and gradually over a long time; I now have thousands of crisp and interesting digital photos to select from, but precious little time to work on web publishing.

About the Author

As you may have noticed, my name is Dániel Balogh (that's just Daniel for you English-speaking folks). I was born in July 1974 and lived most of my life in Budapest, the capital of Hungary. My secondary school used English as the main language of instruction, and the language proficiency I received there is not only something I am proud of to this day, but also the main source of my livelihood.

My interest has always been in things other than the mundane - call me a snob or a weirdo if you wish. I started my university studies as a Psychology major, but already keen on joining the Indology degree course, which essentially consists of Hindi and Sanskrit language training, with bits of everything else Indian added in for flavour.

After procrastinating as long as I could, I finally had no choice but to finish my MA (giving up psychology and becoming a certified Indologist). I am now considering going on to a PhD. Meanwhile, I work now and then as a translator to and from English (just as I have done through all my university years, though I now have more time to work on account of there being no classes I must visit). For a while now, I've been involved with the Clay Sanskrit Library, a project to publish works of Sanskrit literature side by side with an English translation. This work has given me plenty of satisfaction, since at last this is something where I can use what I've spent years learning, and even increase my skills.

Once a year or so I also have the opportunity to guide Hungarian tourists around in India. I have also travelled India as a backpacker with friends and on my own, lived there a year as a scholarship student, and assisted Hungarian film-makers and musicians in getting around in India. I must stress that there do exist people who know more about India than my not-so-humble self, as well as many people whose knowledge of India takes on a radically different aspect - without either their or my opinions being wrong. Nevertheless, I am happy the way I am, and feel that writing this site and the future guidebook in my very own view and style will not only be enjoyable (and hopefully profitable) for me, but for others as well.

When I am not earning money, not meddling in scholarly affairs, and not working on things like this site, I prefer either to get more in touch with nature, or to get away from it completely. The former is served by my fondness for hiking and the bevy of houseplants and aquaria I have in my home; the latter by reading science fiction and fantasy, or by whiling away my time in front of the computer with things like amateur 3D rendering and retouching my photos.


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