||[Dec. 18th, 2005|09:20 pm]
|||||Enya - The river sings||]|
I am ashamed. I am guilty.
For the actions of others who lay claim to the same name that I do, but don't do it justice.
What name might that be?
What is a Hindu? People have come up with various answers, some lavish with self-praise, some critical, some downright derogatory. And the surprising thing is, they all may be right.
Yesterday, a discussion with some friends over a couple of beers brought fresh ideas to light. Loose Framework was the catchphrase that evolved from the discussion, courtesy Ramakrishnan. It explained why Muslims don't feel apologetic for the 9/11 attacks or Christians for the ethnic cleansing of tribal Hindus in Nagaland and Tripura, but Hindus feel ashamed for the actions of so-called Hindus in Gujarat.
The Loose Framework idea proposes that there are Hindus that are more distant or at best as distant from other Hindus following a different philosophical paradigm than they are from Christians or Muslims.
The fault/merit of Christianity and Islam is the restrictive definition of who can be a Christian or a Muslim by their canon and clergy. This gives the practitioners of those religions a solid framework within which they can classify things as haram and halal or christian and unchristan. We, the Hindus have no such framework, or even if it exists, is not universally accepted within the body of Hinduism.
Therefore, you have Hindus that abhor casteism, and Hindus that uphold it, and neither is breaking any tenets of Hinduism. Now, while some may label this obfuscation in Hinduism as a resounding failure of the religion, I consider it to be the veritable success of the religion, in terms of it's tolerance of plurality and conflicting ideas.
Hinduism allows for conflict to rise within it's ranks and assimilates the lessons learnt from that conflict. In the good old times (what's considered to be the golden age of India by most Hindus), we had many schools of philosophy, from Sankhya to Uttara Mimansa, which had almost nothing in common, except their non-rejection fo the Vedas. Sankhya and Yoga as schools of philosophy are now defunct, but many concepts, such as the triguna combo of sattva, rajas and tamas has been adopted from these philosophies. Yoga is now more widespread than Hinduism itself, though only in it's physical form.
But that does not veil the fact that a blind eye has been turned towards Hindu suffering, and while it is good that Hindus do not feel as insecure as their Christian or Muslim brethen when a Hindu is killed, tolerance of wanton murder is definitely bad and unjust, and Hindus should rise to the occasion with a singular voice to oppose it, and deal justice to those who were wronged.
Why should I care? Who is Maniappan Kutty of mine? Why shall I waste my time on some person who was just driving lorries in a far off land?
Because you can, because you should, because that man who was decapitated and left to rot on the roadside was a Hindu. More than that, he was an Indian. The act was an effrontery not only on your belief but also on your nationhood. It was a challenge to India that it's citizen could be subjcted to a fate worse than that dealt out to animals and India would be powerless to do anything. Not powerless because of debilation, but powerless because no one chose to exercise the power at their disposal. Now, that is what is shameful.
And was there a murmur from the NGOs that beat their breasts every time a Muslim girl is raped or a Christian man killed? Did they even try to save this man from a horrible death; they, who blemish Hinduism every time a Hindu transgresses the law? I am talking about the Shabana Azmis and the Teesta Seetalvads of our SECULAR nation. Where were these people when a Hindu was being cut from ear to ear? Nowhere.
It wasn't discussed in the Parliament either. Maniappan Kutty did not even deserve a mention in the Lok Sabha of the nation that calls itself as Shining. Is this what a Shining Nation does? Completely ignores the homicide of one of it's taxpaying citizens in a foreign land?
On the other hand, any atrocities committed against the 15 million illegal Bangladeshis in India become a national issue. Kill them, I say, kill them all. Let them not come into India and become reason for controversy in the Lok Sabha, wasting previous hours of the National Parliament paid for by the hard working tax payer. Kill them at the border itself, no questions asked. We need Daya Sawants in the CRPF and BSF.
But will that suffice? Aren't we already being numb to the atrocities that being perpetrated on Hindus in India by their Indian Muslim and Christian brothers? There are reports of Hindu girls being kidnapped and forced to convert against their will to Islam, but these stories do not get investigated.
Scum like Salman Khan and that Tarannum bar dancer female, suddenly don Muslim caps and burqas, and the entire Muslim community rises to their defence? Where was Islam when she was bar dancing? Where was Islam when Salman drives under the influence of alcohol? All these acts don't put Islam in danger, but when these scum are arrested, suddenly Islam khatre mein hain?
It is time for the intelligentsia in India to realise the difference between milk and water.
The subhashita comes to mind:
hansa shveto baka shveto ko bhedo hansabakayoH
neeraksheeraviveketu hanso hanso bako bakaH.