Christianity, Evangelism & its geopolitical impact

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Arima
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Re: Christianity, Evangelism & its geopolitical impact

Postby Arima » 05 Dec 2018 21:50

sanjaykumar wrote:There is less generational mobility, segregation, incarceration, summary killings of low castes in India than of US blacks. That does not even include ‘miscegenation’ fears.


caste has moved on from violence to denial of power and economic mobilization.
almost all major caste have political party and has say in who get how many seats and where. this is true for all political parties.

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Re: Christianity, Evangelism & its geopolitical impact

Postby sanjaykumar » 05 Dec 2018 23:26

sanjaykumar wrote:There is MORE generational mobility, segregation, incarceration, summary killings of low castes in India than of US blacks. That does not even include ‘miscegenation’ fears.

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Re: Christianity, Evangelism & its geopolitical impact

Postby sanjaykumar » 06 Dec 2018 11:49

It’s these infernal mobile devices. That came out wrong. Blacks are a caste in America and are treated as Dalits were treated 100 yrs ago with summary executions, segregation, fears of miscegenation, incarceration, social and employment exclusion and abysmal inter generation mobility.

Things are a little better in the cities in India than in rural India but it helps to conceptualise blacks in America as a particularly reviled caste.


Browns in Danmark are in precisely an analogous place.

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Re: Christianity, Evangelism & its geopolitical impact

Postby yensoy » 06 Dec 2018 12:09

There is a lot of similarity, but there is also a difference here.

A lower caste person can move to a different state in India and be casteless (in the sense that he is now viewed through the lens of language/region and out of the gamut of caste - privilege or stigma).

A black person who moves to a different state in the US will still be black.

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Re: Christianity, Evangelism & its geopolitical impact

Postby Arima » 06 Dec 2018 14:52

i think we should move caste, religion language discussion to another thread and keep this thread for the topic. else it will get hijacked.

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Re: Christianity, Evangelism & its geopolitical impact

Postby Haresh » 06 Dec 2018 15:58

Arima wrote:i think we should move caste, religion language discussion to another thread and keep this thread for the topic. else it will get hijacked


It should stay here, I think because it is a factor in conversion. You have to find out why people convert
Like it or not caste is a factor to consider.

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Re: Christianity, Evangelism & its geopolitical impact

Postby sanjaykumar » 08 Dec 2018 08:14



What makes this right wing Hindu nutjob believe Hindus have a right to seek an apology from the pope.

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Re: Christianity, Evangelism & its geopolitical impact

Postby JE Menon » 08 Dec 2018 11:55

The converting industry, which is part of what I call the C3 Ecosystem (Congress, Communists & Converters), depends heavily on the existence and perpetuation of caste, as well as the regular highlighting of it and constant reiteration of it through divisive approaches, in order to maintain their relevance. If caste were to truly become irrelevant (not disappear) then there is no role for the converters. So every word they say is in favour of caste eradication, but every act they do is in favour of caste perpetuation. The catch is that, as a result, caste endures even after the so-called "lower caste" has converted. Fundamental to all this is poverty.

And that is why they are fighting tooth and nail to prevent RSS/BJP from exercising true political power, because only then they can revert in force to the caste narrative - which is leeched on to by the Communists, and of course by the Congress who finds it politically very useful. This C3 Ecosystem, therefore, is almost an organic entity that feeds on each other. Modi, by placing primary emphasis on development, has begun to take the wind out of this ecosystem which is losing air now slowly like the hot-air balloon that it actually is (44 Indians/minute are leaving absolute poverty behind according to Brookings - to quote a Western, read white, institution for greater credibility within the ecosystem). Just by itself, reduction of poverty will gradually render this ecosystem airless, and without any political lift.

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Re: Christianity, Evangelism & its geopolitical impact

Postby sudarshan » 09 Dec 2018 03:41

Reading Fa Hian/Hsuan Tsang currently. It seems that practically *everything* which the EJs are currently trying in India, has been tried in the past, 2000 years ago, with massive success, by the Buddhists. Denigrating and ridiculing the "heretic" Hindus, going after them for conversion, using rhetoric to shame Hindus, latching onto the superficial aspects of Hinduism and ridiculing them, using demographics and targeted conversion, targeting the rulers and getting them to patronize Buddhism over "Brahmanism," identifying, isolating, and mocking the Brahmins, etc. Hsuan Tsang's memoirs are filled with references to "jealous Brahmins," "evil Brahmins," "cunning Brahmins," and he has lots of stories about how these Brahmins tried to a. chop down a tree planted by the Buddha, but it kept coming back to life b. murder a harlot and put the blame on the Buddha, only to have it backfire c. have a heretic (Hindu) woman accuse the Buddha of getting her pregnant, only to have Indra himself come down from heaven and show her up (after which she went straight to hell) d. constantly engage the Buddhists in debate, only to have their arguments demolished with ease etc. etc. During Fa Hian's time, it seemed like India was irrevocably converted to Buddhism (all of it, all the way down to the south, and beyond to Sri Lanka). Two hundred years later, during Hsuan Tsang's time, Buddhism was already in deep decline, and Hinduism was reviving, all the way up to Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan. Adi Sankara simply completed the process of wiping out Buddhism, it seems like he didn't initiate it.

Reading Hsuan Tsang, I'm beginning to be firmly convinced of the viewpoint (don't remember who put forth this view) that Christianity is simply Buddhism repackaged around Christ. The proselytising methods adopted by both religions seem to be exactly the same. With the exception, of course, that Buddhism was solidly into logic, while Christianity scores practically zero in that field. Christianity has also used violence extensively, but I'm not sure that this is really a difference as compared to Buddhism - while Hsuan Tsang doesn't mention any violence on the part of the Buddhists, it can't be ruled out either.

The one refreshing notion I get from reading those memoirs, is this: there is *NO* mention anywhere in his book (despite all the venom and malice directed against Brahmins, not just by these Chinese travelers, but by (the majority Buddhist) Indians themselves) - repeat - NO mention of any kind of caste persecution practised by the Brahmins. NO mention of "low castes" vs "high castes" - the text only says "four castes exist, with the first caste being Brahmins, the second being Kshatriyas, etc. Hsuan Tsang even mentions kingdoms which were ruled by Sudras, Vaisyas, and Brahmins. Not Buddhist kingdoms, but Hindu ones (there goes another myth against Hinduism). The (European) translator has occasionally inserted footnotes, questioning whether Vaisyas and Sudras could have really ruled kingdoms in India. Those footnotes also refer to "high" vs. "low" castes. The main text does not.

How did Hinduism revive so successfully after almost dying out? It might be instructive to study that period (200 to 800 AD) for clues.

I also strongly encourage members here to delve into these memoirs written by Chinese travelers (Fa Hian, Hsuan Tsang, Yi Zing), Arabian travelers (Al Beruni, Ibn Batuta), and European travelers (Bernier, Tavernier) in India. There is enough material there to work against this notion of a "rigid, discriminating caste system."

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Re: Christianity, Evangelism & its geopolitical impact

Postby sanjaykumar » 09 Dec 2018 04:46

To equate Buddhism to Christianity is preposterous. Buddhism is an Indian religion as native as Hinduism or Sikhism or Jainism.

There was no murder of others for Buddha, no looting of their property or destruction of their temples. No eternal damnation if they turned Hindu again.

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Re: Christianity, Evangelism & its geopolitical impact

Postby sudarshan » 09 Dec 2018 05:16

sanjaykumar wrote:To equate Buddhism to Christianity is preposterous.


There was no "equating" of the two. I stated that their proselytization methods were the same. And that Christianity repackaged all that around Christ, rather than around Buddha. The comparison ends there, there's no equation of doctrine or fundamental axioms.

Buddhism is an Indian religion as native as Hinduism or Sikhism or Jainism.


Thank you for stating the obvious, I'm aware of this.

There was no murder of others for Buddha, no looting of their property or destruction of their temples.


And I said the same thing - that there was no evidence of any of this (but I was willing to keep the possibility open, given how rapidly Buddhism spread, and given that most of the historical material on the spread of Buddhism comes from Buddhist sources).

No eternal damnation if they turned Hindu again.


This I'm not so sure about, reading the extremely vituperative/self-righteous/triumphant rhetoric in both Fa Hian's and Hsuan Tsang's memoirs. And this rhetoric comes from India and Indians themselves of that time frame, not from the Chinese travelers (who were for the most part simply reporting the stories and rhetoric from India).

Now a genuine question - have you read any of these works? If you have read them, and still don't agree with the above, I'd love to hear your reasoning, built around actual material from the books. If you have not read them, please do, and you' might get what I'm talking about. But please don't set up straw men without knowing the material.

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Re: Christianity, Evangelism & its geopolitical impact

Postby sanjaykumar » 09 Dec 2018 05:40

No I have certainly not read the primary sources and I'm inclined to disbelieve you have. Or do I have to read the original in Chinese? The points I may are sufficient in and of themselves.

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Re: Christianity, Evangelism & its geopolitical impact

Postby sudarshan » 09 Dec 2018 05:58

sanjaykumar wrote:No I have certainly not read the primary sources and I'm inclined to disbelieve you have.


:-? You don't have to be "inclined to disbelieve" that, I freely admit I haven't read your "primary sources," I've only read the English translations.

Or do I have to read the original in Chinese?


:roll: Do you even have a point here?

The points I may are sufficient in and of themselves.


Well then there's nothing more to be said, is there? Have a nice day/life.

To anybody else who is interested: Hsuan Tsang's "Travels to the West" (Si-Yu-Ki) was translated into English sometime in the 19th century, and is available in two volumes:

https://archive.org/details/siyukibuddh ... t/page/n25

The text seems to have been faithfully translated for the most part (or maybe even entirely). The translator/editor has kept his biases and judgments out of the main text, although some of those biases do show in the footnotes.

EDIT: This is mostly off-topic here, except that I thought it would be instructive to note how Hinduism recovered from Buddhist proselytization about 1200 years ago. I'll stop with this.

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Re: Christianity, Evangelism & its geopolitical impact

Postby sanjaykumar » 09 Dec 2018 06:31

:) Well then there's nothing more to be said, is there? Have a nice day/life

I do not have the inclination to engage in sophomoric polemics. Good day/life to you as well.

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Re: Christianity, Evangelism & its geopolitical impact

Postby sudarshan » 09 Dec 2018 07:37

JE Menon wrote:... depends heavily on the existence and perpetuation of caste, as well as the regular highlighting of it and constant reiteration of it through divisive approaches, in order to maintain their relevance ...


Regarding caste, which was the original intent of my post, and which is still on topic here....

The travel accounts of India that I mentioned - it is actually better to read the translations of those, rather than the originals, for one simple reason. The translated text of the originals (I've so far read a little Fa Hian, most of the translation of Hsuan Tsang, most of Bernier's translated work, and a little of Tavernier) do not contain these references to discriminatory caste hierarchies in India of those times (400 AD for Fa Hian, 600 AD for Hsuan Tsang, 1600's for Bernier/Tavernier). But *the footnotes inserted by the European translators do.* That tells its own story. In fact, in some places, the main text says things which fly against the notion of a discriminatory caste system, and *the translator has inserted footnotes questioning the original text.* (Bernier and Tavernier both wrote in French, and their works have been translated into English). IOW, the translator feels that the guy who was actually in India hundreds or thousands of years ago did not know what was what, and that this translator from the 19th century knows better, and needs to clarify to the modern reader, what India was "really like in those times!" How interesting!

All of these works talk volumes about the caste system in India. They even pour bile and scorn on the Brahmins. But none of them mention anything about Brahmins "persecuting the other castes!" Not even Bernier or Tavernier, who wrote as recently as 400 years ago. Most of the time, these original texts (by which I mean English translations of the original texts) don't even refer to "high castes" or "low castes" - there was probably no such thing in old India. High and Low castes are a recent European invention about India.

Buddha rebelling against the discriminatory Hindu caste system and establishing a new religion on that basis - nope, nothing to that effect in these travel accounts.

The other thing that these travel accounts consistently mention is that Indians were near-fanatic about cleanliness and personal hygiene. How did a nation like that so thoroughly change its national character within two hundred years of European occupation, to the point of open urination and defecation? Does that reflect badly on India, or on the occupiers? Food for thought.

Untouchability could simply have been born of the practical need to segregate the food and water supplies of those classes of society, whose duty was to dispose of fecal matter and dead bodies. In a country which was obsessive about personal hygiene, especially in a tropical country where water-borne diseases could wipe out entire villages, doesn't this segregation and avoidance of physical contact make sense? The rest of course was the product of the colonial European mind and its need to find some pressure point in Indian society, which they could exploit to their own ends.

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Re: Christianity, Evangelism & its geopolitical impact

Postby krisna » 09 Dec 2018 09:59

Wrt caste
Caste never a word in any Indian languages including Sanskrit for centuries
It is a portuguese word. Caste common in europe for centuries. It was based on birth right. A noble remains noble, a poor remains poor irrespective of wealth in europe.

Europeans came to India. They being christians could not understand the myriad customs and beliefs of Indians.
Named them caste etc for jaati varna etc. Made mish mash of it.

To better understand Indians, british did census to capture this element. Created caste based census. They legalised "caste by birth right". from 1880s onwards to by 1921, virtually every Indian has been mapped into caste identity which worsened post Independence.
They simply divided Indians into 1000s of castes which morphed x3 times post Independence for political reasons.


for the First time in centuries in India, some outsider legalised as birthright.

Previously we only had profession based varna on the work one did. Jaati is conglomerate of similar profession based families. this was very fluid and dynamic.


The new govt under JLN took lock stock barrel everything from british including caste census.
Unfortunately JLN and his advisors probably did not know the story of Hinduism. Believed the European nonsense and foisted on India esp Hindus.

------------
During census collection data by british, even muslims and christians got included. Hence they got caste just like Hindus. there were protests by all Indians but not much success.


---------------
Indians who were taken as slaves by british to their far flung territories do not have this caste problem.
Hindus living in other parts of world in those times were untouched by caste as seen in India.

-----------

Lot of research has been done which says the above.

Simple internet search for british census and caste system is a starter.

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Re: Christianity, Evangelism & its geopolitical impact

Postby krisna » 09 Dec 2018 10:03

Nicholas Dirks mentions that british writings till late 18th century virtually made no mention of caste in India.
He has written a book called "castes of mind". Available in Amazon

Colin mackenzie a British historian says that many Indian sources prior to 18th century had no mention of caste.

Cynthia Talbot professor of history and Asian studies mentions that in Andhra pradesh even varna was rarely mentioned in extensive Indian medieval records. In fact says probably even varna was not significant in daily life of Indians.
Jaati rarely mentioned prior to 13th century.

Richard Eating prof of history says evidence is clear in kakathiya population 11-14 century records that shudra were part of nobility. It was earned but never by birthright. Many Indians in same family father sons uncles etc were of different professions hence varnas etc.

Susan Bayly writes that even in northern India people were unconcerned regarding caste issues. It became solidified in British times(thru census).


Peter Jackson prof of medical history and muslim India debunks the hypothesis that caste made Hindus turn to islam in medieval era.

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Re: Christianity, Evangelism & its geopolitical impact

Postby krisna » 09 Dec 2018 10:14

sudarshan wrote:Reading Fa Hian/Hsuan Tsang currently. It seems that practically *everything* which the EJs are currently trying in India, has been tried in the past, 2000 years ago, with massive success, by the Buddhists. Denigrating and ridiculing the "heretic" Hindus, going after them for conversion, using rhetoric to shame Hindus, latching onto the superficial aspects of Hinduism and ridiculing them, using demographics and targeted conversion, targeting the rulers and getting them to patronize Buddhism over "Brahmanism," identifying, isolating, and mocking the Brahmins, etc. Hsuan Tsang's memoirs are filled with references to "jealous Brahmins," "evil Brahmins," "cunning Brahmins," and he has lots of stories about how these Brahmins tried to a. chop down a tree planted by the Buddha, but it kept coming back to life b. murder a harlot and put the blame on the Buddha, only to have it backfire c. have a heretic (Hindu) woman accuse the Buddha of getting her pregnant, only to have Indra himself come down from heaven and show her up (after which she went straight to hell) d. constantly engage the Buddhists in debate, only to have their arguments demolished with ease etc. etc. During Fa Hian's time, it seemed like India was irrevocably converted to Buddhism (all of it, all the way down to the south, and beyond to Sri Lanka). Two hundred years later, during Hsuan Tsang's time, Buddhism was already in deep decline, and Hinduism was reviving, all the way up to Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan. Adi Sankara simply completed the process of wiping out Buddhism, it seems like he didn't initiate it.

Reading Hsuan Tsang, I'm beginning to be firmly convinced of the viewpoint (don't remember who put forth this view) that Christianity is simply Buddhism repackaged around Christ. The proselytising methods adopted by both religions seem to be exactly the same. With the exception, of course, that Buddhism was solidly into logic, while Christianity scores practically zero in that field. Christianity has also used violence extensively, but I'm not sure that this is really a difference as compared to Buddhism - while Hsuan Tsang doesn't mention any violence on the part of the Buddhists, it can't be ruled out either.

The one refreshing notion I get from reading those memoirs, is this: there is *NO* mention anywhere in his book (despite all the venom and malice directed against Brahmins, not just by these Chinese travelers, but by (the majority Buddhist) Indians themselves) - repeat - NO mention of any kind of caste persecution practised by the Brahmins. NO mention of "low castes" vs "high castes" - the text only says "four castes exist, with the first caste being Brahmins, the second being Kshatriyas, etc. Hsuan Tsang even mentions kingdoms which were ruled by Sudras, Vaisyas, and Brahmins. Not Buddhist kingdoms, but Hindu ones (there goes another myth against Hinduism). The (European) translator has occasionally inserted footnotes, questioning whether Vaisyas and Sudras could have really ruled kingdoms in India. Those footnotes also refer to "high" vs. "low" castes. The main text does not.

How did Hinduism revive so successfully after almost dying out? It might be instructive to study that period (200 to 800 AD) for clues.

I also strongly encourage members here to delve into these memoirs written by Chinese travelers (Fa Hian, Hsuan Tsang, Yi Zing), Arabian travelers (Al Beruni, Ibn Batuta), and European travelers (Bernier, Tavernier) in India. There is enough material there to work against this notion of a "rigid, discriminating caste system."



me thinks lot of bs in the post above.

Buddha never coined or invented new religion. Nor do its followers claim it so. Infact Buddhism is nothing but refined form of Hinduism. something like if orange is Hinduism then orange juice is Buddhism removing the skin fiber etc etc. (as an example only).

Actually Buddha has praised learned class brahmans(not caste) in his times. He never talked about castes as there were no castes.
.

Buddhism was first seen by europeans/christians outside India. found that buddhists had Gautama Buddha as the first person etc similar to jesus. some buddhist principles etc which they were familiar as in christianity. hence they named it a religion. They initially thought it to be different from Hinduism. of course Hinduism is so vast and myriad with all cultures traditions with no single point of reference to person event or book unlike Buddhism.


---------------------------------------------
"Caste" and "religion" are not Indian words never seen in any Indian languages. These have crept into usage according to european definition .
Hinduism does not fit the definiton of religion by any means. caste created by britshit is a mish mash of everything and has really damaged Hinduism .

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Re: Christianity, Evangelism & its geopolitical impact

Postby Neshant » 09 Dec 2018 12:41

Buddhism is great in theory.
On the practical side, it falls down however.
Passiveness and non-violence in the face of violence does not work.
When India became Buddhist under Emperor Ashoka, India's military shield was set aside and the end result was massive foreign invasions and looters to the subcontinent.
That is the reason India went from Hinduism to Buddhism and back again to Hinduism.

Buddhism can only exist when there is a great power with military strength protecting it.
It cannot exist otherwise because the world is filled with wicked people bent on exploiting peaceful, non-violent ones.

But I am glad India is the originator of two of the world's great religions - Hinduism & Buddhism.

Modern secular Christianity (not Evangelical BS) is a good philosophy compatible with Hinduism.
It accepts that there are many ways to God and no one religion has the sole monopoly on truth.
Hinduism reached that understanding many millennia ago however.
Modern Christianity is only just arriving at that destination.

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Re: Christianity, Evangelism & its geopolitical impact

Postby sudarshan » 09 Dec 2018 13:01

krisna wrote:
sudarshan wrote:Reading Fa Hian/Hsuan Tsang currently. It seems that practically *everything* which the EJs are currently trying in India, has been tried in the past, 2000 years ago, with massive success, by the Buddhists....



me thinks lot of bs in the post above.

Buddha never coined or invented new religion. Nor do its followers claim it so. Infact Buddhism is nothing but refined form of Hinduism. something like if orange is Hinduism then orange juice is Buddhism removing the skin fiber etc etc. (as an example only).

Actually Buddha has praised learned class brahmans(not caste) in his times. He never talked about castes as there were no castes.
.

Buddhism was first seen by europeans/christians outside India. found that buddhists had Gautama Buddha as the first person etc similar to jesus. some buddhist principles etc which they were familiar as in christianity. hence they named it a religion. They initially thought it to be different from Hinduism. of course Hinduism is so vast and myriad with all cultures traditions with no single point of reference to person event or book unlike Buddhism.


---------------------------------------------
"Caste" and "religion" are not Indian words never seen in any Indian languages. These have crept into usage according to european definition .
Hinduism does not fit the definiton of religion by any means. caste created by britshit is a mish mash of everything and has really damaged Hinduism .


Saar, Buddha did not coin a new religion, nor did he "rebel against caste discrimination." I agree. I was only faithfully reporting what I read in Fa Hian's and Hsuan Tsang's memoirs. I can quote passages if necessary. Here are some bullet points from the book(s):

    * Hsuan Tsang's book: he repeatedly refers to Hindus as "heretics" and "unbelievers" and pities their way of life
    * He talks about how the Buddha converted the Devas themselves, and how the Devas became subservient to him and accepted his superiority
    * He has many, many stories of how the "evil," "cunning," "jealous" Brahmins kept trying to wean people away from the "true path," only to be foiled every time
    * Many stories like this:

      * Brahmins tried to chop down a tree planted by the Buddha, but that tree kept coming back to life
      * Brahmins tried to murder a harlot woman and blame the Buddha, but were exposed
      * Brahmins tried to get a woman to declare that the Buddha got her pregnant, but Indra himself came down to show her lie
      * Jealous Brahmins tried to move a stone which had been set down by spirits who came to visit the Buddha, but no matter how many of them tried, they couldn't move that stone
      * There was a temple next to a Buddha vihara - when the sun was in the west, the vihara's shadow fell on the temple (devalaya), but when the sun was in the east, the temple's shadow bent to the north to avoid covering the vihara
      * This same temple - the priests lit lamps for their gods, but in the morning, those lamps were found in the vihara, so the priests set a night watch, and found that their own idols came to life in the night, took the lamps, circumambulated the vihara, and placed the lamps within, before disappearing - so the priests realized that the Buddha was the ultimate truth and all converted
      * Brahmins kept trying to debate the Buddhists, and miserably failed each time, losing more and more converts each time
      * Hinduism is repeatedly referred to as "Brahminism," as in - "there are two religions in India, Buddhism (the true path) and the heretic Brahminical path"
      * Many, many more stories like this

    * Buddha's personality came to be associated with supernatural powers, like flying in the air, reaching out through solid rock, etc.
    * Brahmins are reviled throughout the book - Fa Hian was worse than Hsuan Tsang, at least Hsuan Tsang had some respect for Hindus
    * Hsuan Tsang himself debated and converted Hindus during his stay in India
    * The Buddha was repeatedly portrayed as being served by Indra and Brahma, there are statues like this, and king Harshavardana and the Assam raja both reenacted this scene just before Hsuan Tsang returned to China
    * King Harshavardana was almost assassinated by a wild man, and it turned out that the "jealous Brahmins" had hired this assassin, being enraged by how Harshavardana and the Assam raja were both performing so much service to the Buddha, but none for Hindus
    * Harshavardana's court demanded the extermination of the "heretics" for this assassination attempt, but Harshavardana pardoned the Brahmins, except for the ring-leaders
    * Many many more anti-Hindu, anti-Brahmin tirades like this throughout the book

What do you make of all this? All BS as well? It has all been faithfully recorded, and all these attitudes were prevalent in India of the time, not brought in by the travelers - Fa Hian and Hsuan Tsang, while both being anti-Hindu, were only recording what Indians themselves were saying and doing.

Like I said, the Buddha's true teachings were forgotten, and people built their own religion around him, with him as the ultimate truth. Not people outside India, like Chinese or Koreans or Japanese, but Indians themselves. And all of these anti-Brahminical Buddhist attitudes within India had hardened by 400 AD, Fa Hian's time, long before the Europeans got on the scene - Fa Hian's and Hsuan Tsang's memoirs are both just recordings of these attitudes.

The same thing is happening with Christ now, which is why I said it would be instructive to study what went on about 1500 years ago, and how India was reclaimed for Hinduism.

If you think I'm lying or spreading propaganda, please read the book for yourself, I even posted a link where you can download it. I don't understand why I'm getting all this skeptical attitude when people don't bother to check out the source of what I'm saying, instead go with their own dogmatic beliefs of what Buddhism was or was not and refuse to accept any other notions.

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Re: Christianity, Evangelism & its geopolitical impact

Postby JE Menon » 09 Dec 2018 17:14

People, please stick to the topic of the thread. The divergence into a discussion on Hinduism vs Buddhism, while it can be useful in terms of understanding how Buddhism was basically debated and ritualled out of dominance, does not address the thread topic except for observational purposes. However, it is a worthy topic for another thread if anyone has the stamina to start, manage and guide it.

It will be instructive, to begin with, to record precisely when the terms "Hinduism" & "Buddhism" came into the English/French/German languages. Just before the Europeans arrived, I don't think the non-Muslim Indians called themselves "Hindus" and "Buddhists". There was just Dharma, and its multiple branches, a strong one of which was the Dhamma (let's say). It was a set of beliefs, rituals and philosophical constructs that functioned within the overall Dharmic milieu - to the extent that it was allowed to by the absolutists of the time.

So please, do take that discussion to another thread.

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Re: Christianity, Evangelism & its geopolitical impact

Postby JE Menon » 09 Dec 2018 17:29

>>I'm beginning to be firmly convinced of the viewpoint (don't remember who put forth this view) that Christianity is simply Buddhism repackaged around Christ.

This point of view is not new, and there are plenty of theories as to how this could have come about - there are quite a number of books by European writers suggesting this: (a) one thread suggesting he picked it up from the Essene sect, which seems to have had some contact with Buddhist monks (perhaps in nearby Egypt); and (b) while others have propagated the idea that Jesus himself came to India and got the ideas from here.

There is no solid evidence for any of this, except some tantalising circumstantial bits and pieces which can suddently concretize into something substantial if even one solid bit of real evidence (say an old text - like the Dead Sea Scrolls) is found again, or if one of the hundreds of thousands of ancient manuscripts in India describe someone identifiable as Jesus Christ.

The broad theory, as it exists, goes like this: In his youth, Jesus was a precocious child, who had something to say, even to the priests in Jewish temples (no one knows if this is actually true, but this is a recurrent theme in mainstream Christianity). The narrative then implies that about the age of 12 he took the ancient overland route to India, via the Khyber presumably, or possibly by sea, and even went to Jagannath in Puri. Undoubtedly, on the way he must have met a vast number of Dharmic gurus, swamis and others who basically proliferated throughout the land at the time.

From them, he picked up a number of key concepts and even some of their behavioural traits (gentleness, a certain detachment, perhaps a sense of quiet authority, etc). Gradually, having picked up all that, he returned home, stewed in the local milieu for about a year and - given the warzone that Judea & Samaria were a the time, not to mention riven with poverty and Roman & Elite injustice - stepped out of Nazareth speaking some of what he had learned during his years in India, largely what seems to the West as "Buddhist" concepts now.

On the other side, it is speculated that he engaged with people of the Essene sect, who were regarded as more zealous and "outre" by the regular Jews and that he may have imbibed some of their supposed "Buddhist" ideas and transmitted them.

It is of course more than a little curious that the Buddha, born over 600 years prior, was also born of a virgin and that the Buddha's mother's name was Maya, which is interchangeable with Maria in Greek (i.e. Mary in the English language bibles). In the Greek bibles, it is still Maria.

As I said, I have read several of these books, listened to innumerable lectures on related subjects, but have not come away convinced in the slightest, even though our own Government of India put this out (in 2007 - when you know who was in power).

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D9w-xJfSOyc

Jesus in Kashmir, no less! The poor man, if he actually ever existed, is probably the most over-used political tool so much so that the cult which he started and became a global faith is now a blunt instrument, used primarily by crude evangelists and cynical churchmen.

>>The proselytising methods adopted by both religions seem to be exactly the same.

I disagree quite vehemently about this. Buddhism is not an absolutist "my way or the highway to hell" sort of faith system, indeed it is hardly even a faith system. At best it is a form of Spiritual Atheism at heart (even though the Buddha has become deified over time). They debated others, mainly Brahmins, because they were the keepers of the Sanatana Dharma, but not only Brahmins. They took on all comers, as did the Brahmins. Within India, I have yet to hear of a Buddhist army on the march in order to impose its faith on others, where as you have

"Onwards Christian Soldiers, Marching as to War,
Looking Unto Jesus, Who has Gone Before,
Christ the Royal Master, Leads against the Foe,
Onwards into Battle, See his Banners Flow!"

Buddhist proselytization has been of a passive sort, i.e. people spread out and started talking - and it was essentially take it or leave it. The sophistication of its doctrine and the inherent philosophical concepts (bounded firmly by reason) was such that rulers, and then the general public, gradually accepted it over time; and when a more (or equally) substantial line of reasoning (Advaita Vedanta) came to the fore, people who liked their rituals, their daily worship, their visits to the temple and the chants of the Brahmins as well as other services they provided, simply kept on doing it under the Upanishadic rubric, rather than those of the teachings of the Buddha - although many held on to that too, until the Muslim hordes came in and started slaughtering all and sundry. In my personal view, one of the key reasons why Buddhism dissipated within India itself is because Adi Shankara did not prohibit or even proscribe the Brahminical practices, the ordinary folks daily rituals, the worship, and the temple customs.

In the absense of Hinduism outside India, at least not in great societal depth, Buddhism caught on like wildfire and spread to Japan in the East and most probably across the Levantine and North African plans (but in much smaller numbers because of the inhospitable climates and the desert terrain). There was no real challenge to its doctrine. People only had to speak, and eventually, everywhere, the elite will subscribe to the most sophisticated doctrine, i.e. the one with which the can most easily bamboozle the lower rungs of society; and such doctrines, if they have the greatest component of truth in them, eventually are the most useful also. In India, Buddhism was sorted out by Advaitism, which is truly the crest-jewel of refinement in the search for truth.

The rest of the world has had no exposure to Advaitism yet, not in any substantial way. But, it is beginning. Over the last 60 odd years, steadily and slowly numerous gurus have gone out and spoken. The idea is powerful, and fundamental, and vital - and it holds the force of a very close alignment with the sciences (just as Buddhism does). Eventually, it will make its mark on the world. Check out the interest these days for "Non-Dualism" (which is basically Advaita, with the spices reduced so Europeans can consume it). But it is the elite who eat it first. Let them pick this little, dense, unendingly energising morsel of truth from the buffet of philosophical concepts that India has to offer and taste it. Properly. It will enable them to be people of "faith" to the lower-minds among their societies, and it will enable them to think of themselves as "understanders" of the ultimate - better explained than anywhere else, by anyone else. And quite finely cut for the 21st century and beyond.

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Re: Christianity, Evangelism & its geopolitical impact

Postby sudarshan » 09 Dec 2018 18:34

JE Menon wrote:However, it is a worthy topic for another thread if anyone has the stamina to start, manage and guide it.

It will be instructive, to begin with, to record precisely when the terms "Hinduism" & "Buddhism" came into the English/French/German languages. Just before the Europeans arrived, I don't think the non-Muslim Indians called themselves "Hindus" and "Buddhists". There was just Dharma, and its multiple branches, a strong one of which was the Dhamma (let's say). It was a set of beliefs, rituals and philosophical constructs that functioned within the overall Dharmic milieu - to the extent that it was allowed to by the absolutists of the time.

So please, do take that discussion to another thread.


Let me finish my reading first, and then I might do just what you say.

>>The proselytising methods adopted by both religions seem to be exactly the same.

I disagree quite vehemently about this. Buddhism is not an absolutist "my way or the highway to hell" sort of faith system, indeed it is hardly even a faith system. At best it is a form of Spiritual Atheism at heart (even though the Buddha has become deified over time). They debated others, mainly Brahmins, because they were the keepers of the Sanatana Dharma, but not only Brahmins. They took on all comers, as did the Brahmins. Within India, I have yet to hear of a Buddhist army on the march in order to impose its faith on others, where as you have

"Onwards Christian Soldiers, Marching as to War,
Looking Unto Jesus, Who has Gone Before,
Christ the Royal Master, Leads against the Foe,
Onwards into Battle, See his Banners Flow!"

Buddhist proselytization has been of a passive sort, i.e. people spread out and started talking - and it was essentially take it or leave it.


And I'm saying, that reading those travel records by those Chinese men, it does seem like Buddhism had become that absolutist faith system back in 400 AD. There are stories in there about how Buddha banished some of the heretics to the lowest depths of hell.

Passive proselytization vs. marching armies - I guess I was talking more of the way Xtianity is currently trying to (or rather constrained to) spread. Do you see marching Xtian armies today? They are no longer pulling that sword and fire/inquisition stuff (mainly because they no longer can get away with it), instead they are reduced to more passive proselytization methods, such as: a. demographic aggression, b. co-opting the rulers and getting them to impose a state religion, c. rhetoric against Hindus/ Brahmins, d. offering money for conversion, e. bamboozling people with fake "miracles" etc. From my reading, it seems like, except for d., the Buddhists in India did all of this. That's what I was getting at. But enough of this in this thread.

My main take was on the caste system, and how, despite all this virulent anti-Brahminical rhetoric in those travel memoirs, there is still NOT ONE SINGLE MENTION OF CASTE PERSECUTION THAT THE BRAHMINS INDULGED IN, OR OF LOW Vs. HIGH CASTES, in all the hundreds of pages of those memoirs. That, to me, is the most telling point, and one which can be immediately and effectively used against the caste rhetoric today.

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Re: Christianity, Evangelism & its geopolitical impact

Postby JE Menon » 09 Dec 2018 20:19

>>And I'm saying, that reading those travel records by those Chinese men, it does seem like Buddhism had become that absolutist faith system back in 400 AD.

I have only read bits and pieces, arbitrarily, of the Chinese visitors - and it was quite a while ago, so I do not recall. But is this true of Indian writings of the period? I am not so sure that is the impression I get, although again, I have not specifically checked out the doctrinal posture of Buddhism vis a vis Sanatana Dharma 500 BC-800 AD.

>>Do you see marching Xtian armies today?

Yes, mainly in the Middle East & North Africa. This is not short-term, in my view. And of course, they do not call them Christian armies. However, if you ask around in the Middle East, the view is almost unanimous. It is the Crusades

On the matter of caste, I have no disagreement whatsoever with what you have written.

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Re: Christianity, Evangelism & its geopolitical impact

Postby Sridhar K » 09 Dec 2018 22:50

Had typed a long post that got lost while posting. There are similar stuff in Tamil epics and poetry which talks about how Tamizh country got converted to Buddhism and Jainism in the manner mentioned in Sudharsans post primarily though coopting the king, black magic practices against Shaiva Saints like Sampandhar etc. Kamakshi temple in Kanch was converted to a Tantric Tara Devi temple by the Buddhist which was then reestablished by Adi Sankara

Have read similar stuff during school days about how Terevada buddhist from SL built a similar narrative against Vedic sects in Thailand.

I guess Buddhism had many denominations, co opted by Constantine equivalents in India who used the religion to spread the power.

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Re: Christianity, Evangelism & its geopolitical impact

Postby sudarshan » 10 Dec 2018 00:20

The stories I heard from my Tamil teacher in school regarding Buddhism/ Jainism in TN are diametrically opposite to what you will find in Wikipedia or other sources online today. Let's leave it at that for now, if it gets to the point of starting a new thread on this topic, I will post more there about this.

In the meantime, have a look at the sweet and innocent Wiki entry on Sakkiya Nayanar. If one takes my Tamil teacher's account of this same story as the truth, it would mean that the Wiki entry is highly sanitized.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sakkiya_Nayanar

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Re: Christianity, Evangelism & its geopolitical impact

Postby disha » 10 Dec 2018 11:34

^I do not know what stories your Tamizh teacher said in school regarding Buddhism/Jainism. To state that there was 'conversion' between buddhists and hindus and jains and each treated other badly is basically buying into the western concept of religion and evangelism hook, line and *stinker*.

In effect neither Hindu, Jain, Sikh and Buddhist are 'religions'. Not in the western sense of God, his father an the holy ghost and the giver of books through his "messengers". That concept itself is flawed leading to all sorts of illogical twists and turns and much heart beard.

Hindu, Jain, Sikh and Buddhists are 'philosophies'. If viewed from that angle, a Hindu is no different from a Jain or a Buddhist other than in following a ritual. One can easily listen to a Sikh 'Ek Omkar' and easily understand the sayings of Alwars and Nayanars. The fight if at all there is, is superficial.

Take the example of Dandi Adigal Nayanar, it superficially seems to be a fight between Jains claiming land along a temple and the blind nayanar planning to build a temple tank. Point is at a philosophical level who is blind? Who gains sight and who loses sight?

Hence to give into to this belief of "conversion" business between indic philosophies is to believe in the entire non-philosophical illogical western propagandu.

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Re: Christianity, Evangelism & its geopolitical impact

Postby Pulikeshi » 10 Dec 2018 12:15

Whose father what goes what Tamizh teacher thought? :mrgreen:

Happy Indics get on with the bujiness of caste, darshan, dharma talk every edumacated chance they get...
There are soo many tapics on EJ & geopolitical impact - seems enough self flaggelation has been allowed!
My 0.02 paisa onlee!

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Re: Christianity, Evangelism & its geopolitical impact

Postby sudarshan » 10 Dec 2018 18:36

JEM saar, I'm still in reading mode and not sure I can put all my material into a new thread at this point. However, this thread is getting cluttered up. Would it be okay to move the current discussion (limited as it is in scope) to this other thread: Tradition, Culture, Religion & Law in Indian Society?

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Re: Christianity, Evangelism & its geopolitical impact

Postby JE Menon » 11 Dec 2018 18:21

^^Yes, keep here only the posts that are related to Christianity, etc.

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Re: Christianity, Evangelism & its geopolitical impact

Postby souravB » 13 Dec 2018 02:57

Enlightening interview of Rajiv Malhotra on USCIRF

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Re: Christianity, Evangelism & its geopolitical impact

Postby Ravi Karumanchiri » 14 Dec 2018 00:42

John Chau’s Death on North Sentinel Island Roils the Missionary World

By Eliza Griswold
December 8, 2018




John Chau, a twenty-six-year-old American missionary, was killed last month on North Sentinel Island, seven hundred miles off the coast of mainland India. Chau was part of a community of people who do extreme, sometimes undercover missionary work among the five billion people who live within the “10/40 window”—a term coined by a Christian missionary strategist named Luis Bush to describe a rectangular region of Africa and Asia that lies between ten and forty degrees north of the equator and is home to the majority of the world’s Muslims, Hindus, and Buddhists. The region is also known as the Resistant Belt, because many countries there make proselytizing illegal and, in some cases, punishable by death. In the last two years, the Trump Administration has won favor with evangelicals by negotiating the release of American pastors who were arrested while proselytizing in Turkey and North Korea. North Sentinel is home to an indigenous population of between fifty and a hundred hunter-gatherers. The Indian government maintains their isolation in order to preserve their culture and protect them from lethal microbes that outsiders might introduce. It is illegal to visit, and the country’s Navy patrols the surrounding seas to prevent visitors from landing.

When Chau was in high school, he learned about North Sentinel Island through the Joshua Project, an evangelical organization that focusses on reaching the world’s last “unreached” people; he spent most of the next decade preparing to carry the gospel there. He attended a private Christian high school in Washington State, and then Oral Roberts, a conservative Christian university in Oklahoma. He became an accomplished outdoorsman and documented his feats of derring-do—chasing cougars, descending dangerous cliffs, and eating mysterious berries—on a blog called the Rugged Trail. In 2017, he joined All Nations, an organization based in Kansas City, Missouri, that trains missionaries to travel to remote locations. “Pack your bags, come to CPx, and get your world rocked by Jesus!” its Web site reads.

<snip>


IMO, it's time to increase the naval exclusion zone around North Sentinel by at least one nautical mile; declare the entire area a permanent "free fire zone" for the Indian Navy; and to top it all off, declare the North Sentinelese "Specially Protected People", granting them not only the right to "Stand Their Ground", but also a veritable "License to Kill". That's right, license them to kill; and remove all legal ambiguity. The best part of this solution is that it is an Americanized approach they cannot impugn without seeming hypocritical themselves. Moreover, it's not like these islanders will ever become aware they have a formal 'license to kill', and so there's no worry of them opening shop on the dark web and contracting for hits.
:rotfl:

Seriously, though: Nobody should assume this will quiet down. The IN should be on the lookout for fools following the paths of a fool.

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Re: Christianity, Evangelism & its geopolitical impact

Postby Avarachan » 14 Dec 2018 11:14

There have been interesting stories in the past few days regarding corruption in American evangelical Protestant communities. I'm posting the links in this thread because these communities lead the missionary efforts in India. The truth about what their communities are really like is eye-opening.

https://www.star-telegram.com/topics/fu ... tist-abuse
"Spirit of Fear," December 9, 2018 (series of 5 articles)
"Fort Worth Star-Telegram" (The "Star-Telegram" is one of the major newspapers in Texas, USA.)

https://www.star-telegram.com/living/re ... tist-abuse
"Hundreds of sex abuse allegations found in fundamental Baptist churches across U.S."
December 9, 2018

For decades, women and children have faced rampant sexual abuse while worshiping at independent fundamental Baptist churches around the country. The network of churches and schools has often covered up the crimes and helped relocate the offenders, an eight-month Star-Telegram investigation has found.

More than 200 people — current or former church members, across generations — shared their stories of rape, assault, humiliation and fear in churches where male leadership cannot be questioned.

“It’s a philosophy — it’s flawed,” said Stacey Shiflett, an independent fundamental Baptist pastor in Dundalk, Maryland. “The philosophy is you don’t air your dirty laundry in front of everyone. Pastors think if they keep it on the down-low, it won’t impact anyone. And then the other philosophy is it’s wrong to say anything bad about another preacher.”

The Star-Telegram discovered at least 412 allegations of sexual misconduct in 187 independent fundamental Baptist churches and their affiliated institutions, spanning 40 states and Canada.

Twenty-one abuse allegations were uncovered exclusively by the Star-Telegram, and others were documented in criminal cases, lawsuits and news reports. But victims said the number of abused is far greater because few victims ever come forward.

One hundred and sixty-eight church leaders were accused or convicted of committing sexual crimes against children, the investigation found. At least 45 of the alleged abusers continued in ministry after accusations came to the attention of church authorities or law enforcement.

Compounding the problem is the legal statute of limitations. For many alleged offenders, the statutes on the crimes have expired.

Many of the allegations involve men whose misconduct has long been suspected in the independent fundamental Baptist community. But most of their victims have not publicly come forward, on the record, until now. Even pastors have for the first time — in interviews with the Star-Telegram — acknowledged they moved alleged abusers out of their churches rather than call law enforcement.

From Connecticut to California, the stories are tragically similar:

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Re: Christianity, Evangelism & its geopolitical impact

Postby Avarachan » 14 Dec 2018 11:22

Regarding "Southern Baptists" in the U.S., I recommend reading the following document. This is a detailed, 71-page report, "Report on Slavery and Racism in the History of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary." See pages 5-8 for a summary.
http://www.sbts.edu/wp-content/uploads/ ... ort-v4.pdf

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Re: Christianity, Evangelism & its geopolitical impact

Postby sanjaykumar » 14 Dec 2018 11:40

I wonder if the aam victim of soul harvesting reads bharat rakshak.

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Re: Christianity, Evangelism & its geopolitical impact

Postby Haresh » 14 Dec 2018 22:54

Vicar bans yoga classes at his church hall after members of 'congregation have issues' with its Hindu origin

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/articl ... igins.html

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Re: Christianity, Evangelism & its geopolitical impact

Postby prasan » 16 Dec 2018 18:21

In A First, CM’s Oath Taking Ceremony Conducted With Bible Verses In Mizoram


Aizwal, for the first time ever, the people witnessed the swearing-in ceremony with reading verses from the Bible and singing ‘Hallelujah’. Other hymns were a part of the swearing-in ceremony for the Mizo National Front (MNF) in the majority-Christian state, The Wire reported.

This is for the first time that prayers have been conducted in a swearing in ceremony for the chief minister. The Church had backed the MNF in the assembly polls. MNF is known to be close to the Church and associated NGOs in a state that has majority Christian population at 97 per cent.

Times of India quoted MNF MLA Lalruatkima as saying, “We are doing it for the first time. Rev. Lalhmingthanga, chairman of the Mizoram Kohhran Hruaitute Committee will conduct the reading of the Bible and Leprosy Choir will sing Hallelujah Chorus,” he said on Thursday, 13 December.


https://swarajyamag.com/insta/chhattisg ... n-congress

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Re: Christianity, Evangelism & its geopolitical impact

Postby arshyam » 16 Dec 2018 23:36

What was that phrase called now... "sovereign, socialist, secular democratic republic". I am sure I heard these words somewhere, trying to recollect...

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Re: Christianity, Evangelism & its geopolitical impact

Postby chetak » 17 Dec 2018 13:12

JE Menon wrote:>>And I'm saying, that reading those travel records by those Chinese men, it does seem like Buddhism had become that absolutist faith system back in 400 AD.

I have only read bits and pieces, arbitrarily, of the Chinese visitors - and it was quite a while ago, so I do not recall. But is this true of Indian writings of the period? I am not so sure that is the impression I get, although again, I have not specifically checked out the doctrinal posture of Buddhism vis a vis Sanatana Dharma 500 BC-800 AD.

>>Do you see marching Xtian armies today?

Yes, mainly in the Middle East & North Africa. This is not short-term, in my view. And of course, they do not call them Christian armies. However, if you ask around in the Middle East, the view is almost unanimous. It is the Crusades

On the matter of caste, I have no disagreement whatsoever with what you have written.


Isn't it a fact that the proselytizing padres follow the ameriki armed forces just one step behind wherever they go??

as an example, just look at how korea was converted almost completely, so much so that these converted guys are now in India in large numbers and doing the very same number on the Indians that was once done on them by the proselytizing ameriki padres.

They have attempted to do the same in iraq too.

Wouldn't that be marching Xtian armies today?

Pity that we do not have the same anti conversion and immigration policies that the eminently sensible (and apparently uncivilized!!) North Sentinel Islanders have and also so vigorously enforce.

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Re: Christianity, Evangelism & its geopolitical impact

Postby Haresh » 17 Dec 2018 23:04

chetak wrote:as an example, just look at how korea was converted almost completely


Where I live, there are quite a few Koreans. I used to know one quite well and I discussed this with him.
What he told me was that with Koreans they regard anything western as "the best, the ultimate" which is one of the reasons they convert.
SW London is full of these korean churches.

I think this recent USA Vs N Korea confrontation has made many Sth Korean Christians realize that they were being used as fodder by the Americans.
The USA was willing to fight a nuclear war in the Korean peninsula, to defend freedom democracy etc, safe in the knowledge that only Yellow skinned christians would die en mas, suddenly when the Nth Koreans developed a missile which could strike the Americans the USA backed off..

That is why the South have opened direct talks with the North.
If they can convert enough people then those people will not have loyalty to their country but to the west.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Christianity_in_Korea

"Religious conflict
Fundamentalist Protestant antagonism against Buddhism has been a major issue for religious cooperation in South Korea, especially during the 1990s to late 2000s. Acts of vandalism against Buddhist amenities and "regular praying for the destruction of all Buddhist temples"[68][69] have drawn criticism. Buddhist statues have been considered as idols, attacked and decapitated. Arrests are hard to enforce, as the perpetrators work by stealth at night."[70] Such acts, which are supported by some Protestant leaders,[71] have led to South Koreans having an increasingly negative outlook on Protestantism and being critical of church groups involved, with many Protestants leaving their churches in recent years.[60][72]

In contrast, relations between South Korean Catholics and Buddhists and other faiths has remained largely cooperative, partly due to the syncretism of many Buddhist and Confucian customs and philosophies into South Korean Catholicism, most notably the practice of jesa."


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