Distorted History - Causes, Consequences and Remedies

John Snow
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Postby John Snow » 13 Mar 2008 22:40

question to satyarthi garu>

Then what is the difference between Chandra mana samvatsre (lunar) to soura mana samvatsre. Maharashtrians, Telugus, Kannadigas follow chandramana, where as tamil people follow sourmana (solar based)

Usually the computed difference comes out to be roughly 14 days ( the difference also in telugu new year and tamil new year).

Is adhika masam only related to chaandramana calendar?

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Postby putnanja » 13 Mar 2008 22:50

In Indian chandramana calendar too, festivals are recurrant. For e.g., vinayaka chaturthi occurs on 4th day of shukla paksha in bhadrapada maasa every year. Going by our lunar calendar, it happens on same day every year. However, since we use solar calendar for our daily activities, it appears to be on different days each year.

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Postby SwamyG » 13 Mar 2008 23:41

The equal-equal is the most over used expression at BRF. You walk two steps away from the conformed views somebody will throw it at you. Did I say that there was no difference? Based on some of the arguments here, it looks like it is some of you folks who are trying to make it equal-equal not me.
What am I trying to prove? Well Rajahs were Rajahs, Kingdoms were Kingdoms and war was an affairs of the state that routinely happened. And that Rajahs looked to expand just like any other King. Success of such endeavors is a different matter though.

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Postby Keshav » 14 Mar 2008 05:16

SwamyG wrote:By sheer quality and quantity the Islamic hordes have wrecked greater damage, but that does not mean every time one talks about a local dynasty or ruler doing routine war related atrocities that we have to jump and say "But the Christians and Muslims did these far frequently and in greater numbers."


I think we should take a double standard on this. I normally judge Hindu kings by current international standards of justice, primarily because Hindu rulers were, for the most part, pinnacles of this idea.

Christians and Muslims look at the past as just that - the past AKA things have changed, we aren't responsible. Done.

Perhaps we should simply forget about the times we screwed up (if any of those are actually recorded) and just "put our best face forward" as we Americans say.

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Postby AjayKK » 14 Mar 2008 12:56

sanjaychoudhry wrote:
No race inflicts so much brutality on women as Muslims.

To Gandhi's eternal shame, he did not utter a single word of condemnation of Muslims's treatement of HIndu women, but he was busy fasting and cursing the hapless Hindus for their treatment of Muslims.

Sometimes I think a man so far gone in his delusions that he cannot hear the screams of his own people but all the time curses them for resisting the invaders, is as deranged and off-balance as the Prophet of Islam.


When Suhrawardy called gandhi poor names, gandhi himself said : "Suhrawardy is a trusted friend of mine"

[quote]Towards the end of the prayer time, some of the young Hindu men realised that Suhrawardy was not present, and assumed, rightly, that he was in the house. So they came shouting for his blood. The prayers ended, and Gandhi went to the windows, threw open the shutters and began talking in a low voice to the young men outside. He upbraided them for showing hostility to Suhrawardy. Whatever they thought of his past, he had now agreed to join the effort to bring peace. Then he brought Suhrawardy forward, and stood with one hand over his shoulder.

[b] The critical moment came when a young man shouted at Suhrawardy:

“Do you accept the blame for the great Calcutta killing of last year?â€

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Postby shiv » 14 Mar 2008 14:45

SwamyG wrote:Shiv:
So you want to argue that Christians and Muslims were very very efficient at what they did, and were extremely better than some of the Indian dynasties. So be it.
But that does not mean the Indian Kings did not look at expansion and that their rule was without brutalities.
By sheer quality and quantity the Islamic hordes have wrecked greater damage, but that does not mean every time one talks about a local dynasty or ruler doing routine war related atrocities that we have to jump and say "But the Christians and Muslims did these far frequently and in greater numbers."


No

You have missed the picture again. Not efficiency, but endurance.

The Indian kings came and went.

But Islam and Christianity have never stopped expanding. The difference is not in the number of deaths or brutality - but the sheer number of centuries the business has continued.

One can only be 100% brutal. if you kill all your enemies you are 100% brutal. If you can be brutal (to whatever percentage) for 100 years you are bad. But if you can keep up killing pressure on enemies for 1000 years you are something else altogether.

Check how Indian kings weigh up on timescale and long lasting effect. A potential mass murderer who is convicted and jailed after 2 murders may be bad. But if he stays loose until and after he has killed 50 people he belongs to a different club. Islam is still eliminating people 1400 years later.

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Postby Murugan » 14 Mar 2008 15:25

Indian kings/rulers would have lasted for long, endured and penetrated far away on all the sides of the border:

had:

killing without reasons not considered adharmic

1) offering vedic/hindu/religious prayers five times a day would wash off their sins instantaneously

2) looting and pillaging, cheating, raping by kings, his soldiers and ministers accepted by the people and priests/gurus

3) had these relgious people like padres and mullash turned blind eye to their "so called" misdeeds and encouraged all such activities to meet political ends

4) or having prophet icon/relgion who/which will allow/practice rubbing penis between the thighs of 9 year old pre-teen girls and/or/moreover destroying others' places of worship been act of chivalry and courage

5) HAD, kings/rulers were not restricted by dharma declaring pillaging and looting adharmik.

6) HAD, forgiving enemies not a highest act of dharma

all of the above and other (mal) practices allowed by so called dharma wd have made our race dreaded all over the world and perhaps we would have ruled seven seas ruling till date.

It is ultimately the hindu relgion's values and ethos that could not put us at par with christian and muslim marauders.

btw, the indian (Chakravarti) kings' expansions were mostly done:
first threatening the weak/unwanted king and then having matrimonial alliance, even with malechhas etc. thus spilling/spoling less and less blood.
(as in case of chandragupta's marriage with that defeated seleukus nicator's daughter or Samudraguptas ashwamedh yagya, and many other examples of imperialist hindu kings etc)

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Postby SwamyG » 15 Mar 2008 00:52

shiv wrote:No

You have missed the picture again. Not efficiency, but endurance.

The Indian kings came and went.

But Islam and Christianity have never stopped expanding. The difference is not in the number of deaths or brutality - but the sheer number of centuries the business has continued.

One can only be 100% brutal. if you kill all your enemies you are 100% brutal. If you can be brutal (to whatever percentage) for 100 years you are bad. But if you can keep up killing pressure on enemies for 1000 years you are something else altogether.

Check how Indian kings weigh up on timescale and long lasting effect. A potential mass murderer who is convicted and jailed after 2 murders may be bad. But if he stays loose until and after he has killed 50 people he belongs to a different club. Islam is still eliminating people 1400 years later.


Is it a historical distortion or not to say Indian Kings never looked towards expansion and the Kingdoms/armies never committed atrocities? I am not debating Islam's efficiency or endurance.

You continue to talk about Islam and compare it with Hindu kings, whereas I am not.

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Postby satyarthi » 15 Mar 2008 12:29

John Snow wrote:question to satyarthi garu>

Then what is the difference between Chandra mana samvatsre (lunar) to soura mana samvatsre. Maharashtrians, Telugus, Kannadigas follow chandramana, where as tamil people follow sourmana (solar based)

Usually the computed difference comes out to be roughly 14 days ( the difference also in telugu new year and tamil new year).

Is adhika masam only related to chaandramana calendar?


A purely solar year, like the Tamil new year, starts exactly when sun transits into Mesha (Mesha sankranti). But the Indian luni-solar years either start at the new moon in the same solar month (amanta system), or on the previous full moon (purnimanta system). This means there will be difference between start of a solar year and a lunar year. Also start of amanta and purnimanta years are off by a fortnight.

Adhika masa is associated with luni-solar calendar, i.e. it arises due to a need to maintain the lunar year in tandem with the solar year. In a purely solar calendar, there is no need for adhika masa. More explanations below.

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1. Sidereal or nirayana year : Measures year by the time taken by sun to reappear in the same background of stars. In Indian system initial point is taken as Mesha (or Aries) rashi. Sidereal year is 365.256363 days. So nirayana (sidereal) year is longer than the sayana (tropical) year by 0.014173 days.

2. Tropical year or sayana year : Measures year by the time from vernal equinox to vernal equinox = 365.24219 days. This is called sayana year in Indian system, or tropical year in western system. The term "tropical" just means when you count time from equinoxes or solstices.

The difference between a tropical year and sidereal year is due to precession of earth's axis. This slow precession causes, the equinoxes and solstices to shift back slightly every year.

Since a tropical year effectively subtracts out the precessional difference and is tied to the equinoxes and solstices, this effect of precession is not noticed, and the equinoxes and solstices occur around the same date every year.

In a sidereal year this effect due to precession is noticeable over time. If sun used to cross into Makara at winter solstice in 285 AD, now it is ahead by about 24 days. So according to solar sidereal calendar, the solstice has shifted into the previous month by 24 days than that at 285 AD.

3. Gregorian calendar:
(i) Is a solar calendar, that uses the tropical year, but the length of the year is given in an integral number of days, usually 365, but can be 366 in leap years.

(ii) To account for 0.24219 days deficit in a standard year of 365 days, every 4 years an extra day is added.

(iii) But since 0.24219 is not exactly 0.25, other corrections are introduced. A century year is not allowed to be a leap year unless divisible by 400. This means that in a period of 400 years there are 97 leap years. Which gives mean gregorian year as 365.2425 days, which is slightly longer than the tropical year. So even the Gregorian calendar would need some tuning after some time.

(iii) Months have 31, 30, 28 (or 29) days so that the sum works out to 365 (or 366) days.

4. Indian solar (sauramAna) calendar:

(i) is a solar calendar that uses the nirayana (sidereal) year of 365.256363 days. Surya Sidhhanta gave sidereal year as 365.258756 days which is slightly longer than the current estimates. Year's beginning is typically when Sun transits into Mesha (Aries) rAshi.

(ii)Due to the fractional part of 0.256363 days (about 6 hours 9 minutes 10 seconds), Sun enters the Mesha rashi every year later in the day by about 6 hours. Depending upon how the beginning of the day is determined, there can be a difference of a day in deciding when the year has started. Since the beginning days of the months are similarly decided (when the sun enters a rashi corresponding to that month), beginning days of months can also have similar variation.

(iii) Entering of a rashi by the Sun is called sankranti. That is why the comment about Makara-sankranti in the Frontline article was stupid. Because on Makara sankranti day, sun actually crosses into Makara (or capricorn).

(iv) Due to the precession of earth's axis at a slow rate, of 50.3 arcseconds per year, the tropical year is shorter than the sidereal year. This also means that the start of the year in a sidereal system, as identified by sun moving into Mesha (Aries) rashi, moves with respect to the equinoxes (or solstices) by this much amount. Therefore over time, the start of the year appears in a different season. Since the seasons are dependent upon time interval from equinoxes and solstices.

(v) Tropical system arbitrarily redifines "Aries" to start from the vernal equinox. But due to the precession, vernal equinox is no more in Aries but is off by 24 days and closer to Pisces. This fact must be kept in mind. In Indian system Mesha is the actual, fixed constellation spanning 30 degrees in the background of stars. In Western tropical astronomy, so called "Aries" is a patch of sky 30 degrees wide, which moves around.

(vi) Note that vernal equinox point coincided with true Aries (Mesha sankranti) in year 285 AD. Since then it has moved by about 24.4 ( (2008-285)*0.014173) days.

4. National calendar of 1957:

It is a solar tropical calendar. It was an attempt to make Indian calendar tropical instead of sidereal. The year starts on vernal equinox day and has months of 30 or 31 day lengths, with a leap year convention piggy backing on Gregorian calendar, It was an attempt to introduce Gregorian calendar with Indian sounding terminology, and hasn't found any real uses.

5. Lunar or chandramAna calendar:

(i) It is not a true lunar calendar, but a luni-solar calendar. Where the year is still decided by the sun, but the months (mAsa) and dates (tithi) are decided by moon.

(ii) A lunar calendar's basic unit is a lunar month =(new moon to new moon). In some calendars full moon to full moon = 29.5306 days.

(iii) A sidereal solar month is transit of the sun from one rashi to next rashi and is = 365.256363/12 = 30.43803 days.

(iv) Solar months are named after the nakshatra visible opposite to the sun, so chaitra month is associated with sighting chitrA nakshatra opposite the sun, i.e. is the nakshatra rising when the sun is setting.

(v) A lunar month is named after the solar month in which the new moon falls.

(vi) Since the lunar month is smaller than the solar month more than one new moon can fall within the same solar month.

(vii) Tithi: There are 30 thithis in a lunar month. 15 in the shukla paksha and 15 in the krishna paksha. Since a lunar month has 29.5306 solar days, a tithi works out to be slightly smaller than a solar day , i.e 1 mean Tithi = 29.5306/30 = 0.98435 solar days = 23.6244 hours. The significance of a tithi is that it marks a fixed amount of advancement in lunar phase. since lunar month is new moon to new moon, one tithi works out to = 360/30 = 12 degrees change in lunar phase.

(viii) Since a tithi is smaller than a solar day, even if a tithi's beginning matched with sunrise at a certain date, it will drift and in general a tithi can start at any time of a solar day.The days of a month are numbered according to the tithi during sunrise. The naming convention "chaitra shukla panchami" means in the lunar month of chaitra, in the bright half of the moon, the 5th tithi was going on at sunrise.

6. Adhika or Mala months in luni-solar calendar:

(i) A lunar year of 12 lunar months is 29.5306 * 12 = 354.3672 days. While a nirayana (sidereal) solar year is 365.256363 days. Therefore a lunar year is shorter than a solar sidereal year by 10.89 days.

(ii) To keep the lunar year in tune with solar year, an extra lunar month needs to be added to a lunar year at certain intervals. Usually every 19 years 7 lunar months are added. With this correction 19 lunar years = (19*12+7)*29.5306 = 6939.69 days, which is pretty close to 19 sidereal years = 19 * 365.256363 = 6939.87 days. So to maintain a lunar year in tune with a solar year, 7 extra lunar months need to be added during a period of 19 years or on average one lunar month per 2.7 years.

(iii) Indian astronomers don't add these extra months at arbitrary intervals (such as Gregorian calendar does with leap years), but have an ingenious method. Since lunar month is smaller than a solar month, two new moons can occur within the same solar month. Then since by convention a lunar month is named by the prevailing solar month, you get two lunar months getting the name of the same solar month. This way an extra lunar month gets added with the same name as the previous one. The first month with the same name is called "adhika" or "mala". It turns out that this way of adding extra lunar months works out to have one lunar month added per 2.7 years.

(iv) This idea of "mala" masa and the so called "blue moon" have something in common.

7. amanta and purnimanta luni-solar calendars:

(i) In Amanta system Month is from new moon to next new moon. The lunar year also starts at the new moon. The month is named by the solar month in which the new moon falls. The first lunar month of the year is chaitra.

(ii) Purnimanta system, month is from full moon to full moon, and starts one fortnight before the amanta month. But the year starts on a new moon!! This is the reason of the 14 day fortnight difference. So in a purnimanta calendar, the year starts in the middle of the lunar chaitra month. So, one half of chaitra gets counted in one year and other in the next!

(iii) Purnimanta is common in North India.
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Last edited by satyarthi on 15 Mar 2008 16:35, edited 1 time in total.

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Postby satyarthi » 15 Mar 2008 12:46

RaviBg wrote:In Indian chandramana calendar too, festivals are recurrant. For e.g., vinayaka chaturthi occurs on 4th day of shukla paksha in bhadrapada maasa every year. Going by our lunar calendar, it happens on same day every year. However, since we use solar calendar for our daily activities, it appears to be on different days each year.


Exactly.

If people recall that Buddha was born on a full moon night, then wouldn't it make much more sense, and give a stronger sense of recurrence of original conditions, to celebrate his birthday on a full moon? That is what Indian festivals do. They take lunar phases also into account while deciding "recurrence".

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Postby shiv » 15 Mar 2008 17:52

satyarthi wrote:
RaviBg wrote:In Indian chandramana calendar too, festivals are recurrant. For e.g., vinayaka chaturthi occurs on 4th day of shukla paksha in bhadrapada maasa every year. Going by our lunar calendar, it happens on same day every year. However, since we use solar calendar for our daily activities, it appears to be on different days each year.


Exactly.

If people recall that Buddha was born on a full moon night, then wouldn't it make much more sense, and give a stronger sense of recurrence of original conditions, to celebrate his birthday on a full moon? That is what Indian festivals do. They take lunar phases also into account while deciding "recurrence".


Actually most of us are DIE when it comes to the Indian calendar and none more so that me.

India lives by the Indian calendar. The seasons are extremely accurately predicted by the calendar, and festivals and life are dictated by that calendar.

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Postby satyarthi » 15 Mar 2008 18:35

Shiv,

Thats true.

If you look at Gregorian tropical calendar, it is extremely simple. Indian calendars appear complicated, not because they can't be as simple as Gregorian, but rather being as simple as Gregorian is considered "simplistic".

The reason behind a tropical solar calendar like Gregorian is "only' to match dates with seasons.

Indian Astronomers, could do all that. They knew about precession (ayana-chalana) and knew where the beginnings of the ayana (uttrayana or dakshinayana) lie.

But Indian astronomy was much more interested in the idea of defing a "recurring event" by taking a mix of periodicities into account

There are several periodicities:

(i) periodicity of equinoxes and solstices (or seasons), this is what defines the tropical year.
(ii) periodicity of sun appearing in a certain background of stars ( 12 rashis). This defines the sidereal year
(iii) periodicity of moon appearing in the background of stars (27 nakshatras)
(iv) periodicity of lunar phases (30 thithis)

Gregorian calendar takes first periodicity and lets others slide.

Indian luni-solar calendar gives a lot of importane to 2nd, 3rd and 4th periodicities, and lets the 1st one slide. But the first one is the slowest one, since equinoxes precess at a very slow rate

This makes Indian calendars more complicated. One can tell the prevailing tithi (or the lunar phase), or near which nakshatra moon will be sighted, or opposite which star Sun is observed, for any date by looking at the panchanga. You also know how the Rahu-ketu (or Lunar-orbital-nodes, the two end points of the line where plane of the lunar orbit crosses the plane of earth's orbit), are moving, so that you can see when eclipses will occur. But by looking at the Gregorian calendar you get no such idea. In fact to provide the info that Indian panchang provides, Gregorian calendar will have to become much more complicated too. In fact an Indian calendar or Panchang is more like an astronomical almanac or ephemeris than a simple calendar.

Besides providing a better approximation to true recurrence, there was another factor driving Indian calendars to complexity. This was related to Astrology (phalita jyotisha). In Astrology, you need to introduce motion of 5 other planets as well as Lunar nodes (Rahu-Ketu). Moon was considered very important for astrological purposes, and its motion (tithis) and motion of its orbital nodes (Rahu Ketu) were very minutely studied.

I think, a thorough study of Indian astronomy manuscripts, thousands of which remain untranslated, will prove that the art of calendar making in India was complex but sophisticated, as long as its purposes are kept in mind.

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Postby Kaushal » 15 Mar 2008 21:21

I have a tutorial in appendix G of the book "Astronomical dating of events ... " on
Indic cosmology, Indic calendars and Archaeo Astronomy which is a good introduction to thhe subject in my web site .
http://indicethos.org/History/HEC2007.htm

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Postby Tilak » 15 Mar 2008 22:23

Kaushal wrote:I have a tutorial in appendix G of the book "Astronomical dating of events ... " on
Indic cosmology, Indic calendars and Archaeo Astronomy which is a good introduction to thhe subject in my web site .
http://indicethos.org/History/HEC2007.htm


Kaushal ji, Great site with lots of information. Thanks.

----

Some might consider a nitpick. But since I work in the IT field and couldn't resist giving you feedback strictly from web-users/visitors perspective. A recent study conducted by Akamai Tech states that user's online attention span is ~5 seconds and is getting even shorter, if the first impression is not made within the above 75% would never return.

So I thought I could share with you some info from "my" ~experience.

Scientific Web Design: 23 Actionable Lessons from Eye-Tracking Studies

:Apologies OT:

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Postby Kaushal » 16 Mar 2008 01:47

You are right it is time to streamline the site and mae it more more 'catchy', I dotn hav the time to do it , I am looking for a website designer to do it for me.

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Postby ramana » 16 Mar 2008 06:56

Folks let Keshav be. He is still new and comes out abrasive. But his heart is OK. And keshav try not to be abrasive and see what shiv is saying.

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Postby shiv » 16 Mar 2008 07:05

Keshav wrote:How can I prove to you that I'm not a troll with an agenda or some ex-troll come back? Just agreeing with what you say doesn't really prove anything either.


Keshav - you are obviously not new to the internet and forums.

If you choose to argue with everyone you are a troll even if you are correct. People often mistake the views of a newcomer. The old codgers views are well known. There are ways of dealing with that. Fighting with everyone is not one of them. Lurk for a bit and see how you can get your views across in a manner that does not rub people up the wrong way is my suggestion to all newcomers in any forum.

The choice is yours.

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Postby Keshav » 16 Mar 2008 07:46

ramana wrote:Folks let Keshav be. He is still new and comes out abrasive. But his heart is OK. And keshav try not to be abrasive and see what shiv is saying.


Thank you for this.

The choice is yours.


While I understand what you're saying, you did not confirm or deny the uncivility of the excerpts I gave in my last post. I will assume I've done nothing wrong and continue.

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Postby shiv » 16 Mar 2008 20:02

Kalantak please check the admin warning thread

http://forums.bharat-rakshak.com/viewto ... 110#468110

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Postby ramana » 19 Mar 2008 10:35

By e-mail....
The Humanities and Social Sciences Department of the IIT-Madras

invites you to

a lecture on

MULTIVERSITY

by Claude Alphonso Alvares

Venue: HSB 333
Date: March 18, Tuesday
Time: 3.30 p.m.


About Multiversity
A brave initiative to rid the continents of Eurocentric biases in
university studies. The dependence on Western academia ensures
intellectual slavery that is unending and unnatural. Multiversity
challenges scholars, teachers and students to bring colour back into
academic studies, design their own curricula, write and read their own
texts and invent their own methodologies. A challenging task, but
neither unrealistic nor impossible.

About Claude Alvares
Claude Alvares is a truly multifaceted personality, whose passion is
to address the problems created by modernity, or the modern mind. His
PhD thesis challenged the popular notion that modern Western
technology and culture are more advanced than their Eastern
counterparts, and was later published as a book called 'Decolonising
History'. Claude was one of the earliest Indians to expose the
politics and technological emptiness of the Green Revolution package
in India, and of the Narmada Dam. During this time, Claude set up the
Other India Press, the first-of-its-kind alternative publishing house
in India, which has published numerous books, both critiquing the
modern development paradigm as well as providing alternatives.

Over the last 20 years, Claude's primary work has been to decolonise
various aspects of the society (education, health care, economy,
agriculture, etc.) by exposing the fallacies of modernity's promises
to the humankind, and creating spaces for regenerating indigenous ways
of learning and living. He is currently the Member of the Supreme
Court Monitoring Committee on Hazardous Wastes; The Director of The
Goa Foundation; Member of the High Court Committee on Noise Pollution;
Working Director of the Green Goa Works; Director of Organic Farming
Association of; Coordinator of Multiversity; Governing Trustee of the
Other India Bookstore; Editor of the Other India Press, Goa, India.

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Postby shyamd » 20 Mar 2008 00:19

Sorry, didn't know where to post.
Why Hindus failed to resist the invaders?
[quote]By M.S.N. Menon

Why did India fail to produce another man of the calibre of Kautilya, whereas China produced a number of philosophers of militarism.

Because of the caste system? Because Islam was superior to Hinduism? Because of our belief in non-violence? Because of our disunity? Or was it because the rulers who failed us? All these and many more could have caused our defeat and subjection to the Muslim invaders.

But how is it that there is no authentic work on this subject? Because we did not want to give offence to the Muslims by exposing their past to the detailed scrutiny of our people. Tagore says: We have drawn a tight veil over their past.

But it is time we lifted this veil. Why? Because we Hindus must know our own past—more so our failures. We have to go to the root of our own history—to the very infancy of our people—to understand where we made the first false step. And the first mistake we made was in not trying to know, even vaguely, why we are here on this earth. Surely, it was not to liberate ourselves from the cycle of birth and death! It was not as if we were here only to catch the next train! As if the earth was railway station!

It is true, we will never know why we are here. But we can arrive at an intelligent answer: that our job, now that we are here, is to assist nature to unfold the purpose of creation.

Johannes Voigt, the philosopher and historian, says that “history offers no second instance of a country where the inward life of the soul has completely absorbed all the practical concerns of a nationâ€

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Postby ramana » 24 Mar 2008 21:21

X-posted from Nukkad-40

[quote="SaiK"]http://flonnet.com/stories/20080328250610000.htm
Medieval mistake


The usual explanation given for the decline in Indian medieval science – that the rise of Brahminism after Sankaracharya led to a split of hand and brain and started a paradigm shift away from active experimentation – is probably irrelevant here; it was still the heyday of Nalanda and other Buddhist monasteries when the debate was going on, during Brahmagupta’s time, for example. (The school of thought in vogue in Nalanda at that time was the Yogachara philosophy, a kind of Kantian idealism, of negating reality; the famous Chinese pilgrim Xuanzang, or Hieun Tsang, came to study it in Nalanda in the early 7th century C.E.)

..........

he Government of India set up a committee to reform our calendars in 1955 with the renowned physicist Meghnad Saha as its chairman. It surveyed the existing calendars and the methods of corrections adopted in each, and concluded that “the Hindu calendar... is a most bewildering production of the human mind and incorporates all the superstitions and half-truths of medieval times.... In spite of these errors, very few have the courage to talk of reform... the beginning of the year is now wrong by nearly twenty-three days, the result of accumulated error of nearly 1,400 years.â€

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Postby ramana » 24 Mar 2008 21:29

X-posted. Even though the book is about art and art criticsim, it has a very good understanding of the cause for distoritionof Indian history. The Marxist school is partly to blame for trying to fit the European class struggle mold onto Indian society. Especially read pages 240 onwards. I was up late last night reading it on line!


ramana wrote:Folks I found this awesome book!

Google Books

Art of Transitional India
Its by good intro by Vinayak Purohit from Popular Prakashan 1988.

Long (1368 pages!) but very interesting. Read Chapter 3 & 4.

Vsunder, CDs will be mailed next week.

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Postby Kalantak » 24 Mar 2008 21:39

Webpage not archived.

Rewriting history essential to make facts more authentic: Scholars
Mar 24, 2008

Pioneer News Service | Jajpur

Rewriting historical events is essential for giving the present society the right message. Things have undergone great change and a review is required to make it more research based and authentic, debated scholars.

Scholars from universities and colleges gathered on March 16 and 17 for a deliberation on a national-level UGC sponsored seminar at Brahmani College, Dandisahi in the district of Kendrapara and discussed on issues like 'Rewriting history: The need of the hour.'

Speaking on the occasion, Head of the Department of Ancient History and Archaeology, Utkal University, Professor Ashok Nath Parida, who was the chief guest on the occasion, said, "History must be revised. Researchers should focus on scientific methodology of studies of history."

He said revision need not be in the traditional form rather history should be corroborated with modernity with new discoveries and findings.


Head of History Department, Utkal University Professor Dr Ashok Kumar Patnaik, who was the guest of honour on the occasion, also stressed on revision of History in the present context. "It is a debatable topic and should be discussed at the national-level," said Patnaik.

While criticising the stand of many forums that opposed new ideas and revelation of facts in the modern Indian history, he said, "Rewriting will enrich studies and it would explore ideas from various sides in the modern age."

"In the beginning, while history was being written, many facts were neglected in the nationalist perspective. Those who fought for freedom were called terrorists at a time. They took up arms to combat colonial forces. If they were called as militant extremists, what is wrong," he asked.

Prof Pattnaik also spoke on how history writing was being influenced by regional and communal bias. "Tolerance is required for bringing out history to light. Hence, we should remain prepared to face the challenge while rewriting history," said Pattnaik.

Dr Kharavela Mohanty, who was the chief speaker, emphasised on the study of history. He called upon scholars to come forward with their impulse of curiosity to learn history. While rewriting history cautious steps must be taken, so that no community is hurt by the new versions.

Principal of Brahmani College Dr Manidra Kumar Samal presided over the meeting and Dr Amiya Kumar Mohanty spoke as the guest of honour. Among others Head of the Department, History, KC Baral, lecturer PK Mallick, TK Pati, all the history students and staff of the college were present on the occasion, besides the students and faculty members from other colleges.

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Postby shiv » 29 Mar 2008 22:29

http://www.islamreview.com/articles/isl ... ance.shtml
Ibn Warraq


So far we have been concentrating on the fate of the People of the Book, that is to say, on the Jews and Christians. In their encounter with "heathens and idolators," the Muslims were merciless, with their implacable moral certainty, arrogance, encouraged by the ferocious words of God Himself, as given in the Koran, to kill unbelievers. In the ninth century, the persecutions of the Zoroastrians of Persia pushed them to migrate to the more tolerant lands of Hindu India, where to this day they form a respected minority known as Parsis.
We shall now turn to the spread of Islam beyond Persia, and its arrival in the land of "idolators," India.
The Muslim conquest of Sind was masterminded by Hajjaj, the governor of Iraq, and effected by his commander Muhammad Bin Qasim in 712 C.E. After the capture of the port of Debal, the Muslim army took three days to slaughter the inhabitants. When Hajjaj received Bin Qasim's report of his victory, he wrote: "My dear cousin, I have received your life-augmenting letter. On its receipt my gladness and joy knew no bounds.... But the way of granting prescribed by the law is different from the one adopted by you.... The Great God says in the Koran: 'O true believers, when you encounter the unbelievers, strike off their heads.' The above command of the Great God is a great command that must be respected and followed...." Later, he wrote: "My distinct orders are that all those who are fighting men should be assassinated, and their sons and daughters imprisoned and retained as hostages."(12)
Obedient to a fault, Bin Qasim, on his arrival at the town of Brahminabad, "ordered all the men belonging to the military classes to be beheaded with swords. It is said that about 6,000 fighting men were massacred on this occasion; some say 16,000."
The real conquest of India by the Muslims dates from the beginning of the eleventh century. In 1000 C.E. the head of a Turco-Afghan dynastic, Mahmud of Ghazmi, first passed through India like a whirlwind, destroying, pillaging, and massacring. He was, as one historian put it, a "zealous Muslim of the ferocious type ... who felt it to be a duty as well as a pleasure to slay idolators."(13) Mahmud was also after booty, and he certainly derived a handsome profit from his holy wars. In the course of seventeen invasions, Mahmud, in the words of the great Arab scholar Alberuni, who had been brought to India by Mahmud, "utterly ruined the prosperity of the country." He destroyed Hindu temples in his lust for gold. In the holy Hindu city of Mathura, he gave orders that all the temples be burned to the ground. In his iconoclastic fury, Mahmud destroyed irreplaceable works of ancient Hindu art, and at the same time sowed the sees of hatred of all things Muslim in the minds of Hindus. And yet, Muslim historians see him as one of the glories of Islam. He was an avaricious bandit little deserving of admiration.
In 1351, Firuz Shah ascended the throne and became ruler of the north of India. Though in many ways an enlightened man, when it came to religion he was a bigot of the first order. Once he went in person to a village where a Hindu fair was being held. He himself wrote:
I ordered that the leaders of these people and the promoters of this abomination should be put to death. I forbade the infliction of any severe punishment on the Hindus in general, but I destroyed their idol temples and instead thereof raised mosques.
Later a brahman was burnt alive for practicing his rites in public. Firuz Sha was simply carrying on the tradition of the early Muslim leaders, and, to quote Vincent Smith,(14) "believed that he served God by treating as a crime the public practice of their religion by the vast majority of his subjects |i.e. Hindus~."
Buddhists fared no better than the Hindus. Indeed most historians attribute the disappearance of Buddhism from India, in part at least, to the intolerance of the Muslim invaders of the twelfth and thirteenth centuries. For example, in the sack of Bihar by Muhammad Khilji, in 1193, thousands of Buddhist monks were put to the sword, a great library destroyed, and many ancient monuments irretrievably wrecked. These Muslim invasions were fatal to the existence of Buddhism in northern India. The monks who escaped massacre fled to Nepal, Tibet, and the south.

Intolerance in Islam extends even to other Muslims. Right from the beginning of Islam, there were rivalries, often bloody, between sects, groups, and factions, with each group convinced of its own, exclusive "truth." For instance, a subsect of the Kharijites, known as the Azraqites, developed a puritanical theology that became a justification for terrorism and numerous massacres. They themselves were exterminated at the end of the seventh century by Umayyad armies.
At the beginning of the ninth century, Islam had its own Inquisition, mihna. In 827 C.E., the Abbasid caliph, al-Manum, gave his allegiance to a doctrine about the origin of the Koran. Henceforth, officials throughout the empire were obliged to publicly confess their agreement. This policy was violently pursued under al Mamun's successor, al Mutasim. Any challenge was brutally suppressed.
In modern times, Pakistan's treatment of its Ahmadi sect is a disgrace. The Ahmadi sect was founded by Mirza Ghulam Ahmad (born 1835) in 1889. He came to believe that he was the Mahdi or the Promised Messiah, an idea that is deeply abhorrent to most Muslims, who believe that Muhammad was the final Prophet. Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, then prime minister, to win over the Mullahs, the Muslim clergy, and because of pressure from Arab leaders declared all Ahmadis non-Muslims in 1974. Then in 1984, the military dictator, Zia ul Haq, began the systematic persecution of Ahmadis who were denied their civil rights--they were denied the freedom of religion; they were continuously harassed and arrested; their mosques were demolished. Zia himself vowed to exterminate the "cancer" of Ahmadism. "The teachings of Ahmadiyat were misrepresented so as to create hatred among the members of the community. The mullahs were let loose by the government and they roamed about in cities and villages, using the pulpits of mosques to incite the people to kill the Ahmadis and burn their property. This situation continues to this day. The Bahais in Iran have suffered similarly.
As the story of Islamic intolerance moves to modern times, it is increasingly a story of massacres, fanaticism, hostility, and intolerance. Even Islam's staunchest supporters will testify to the uneasy and precarious position of non-Muslims in the Muslim states of today--the Copts of Egypt, the Jews in Syria, the Christians, and Hindus in Pakistan

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Postby mayurav » 29 Mar 2008 23:42

shyamd wrote:Sorry, didn't know where to post.
Why Hindus failed to resist the invaders?
By M.S.N. Menon

Why did India fail to produce another man of the calibre of Kautilya, whereas China produced a number of philosophers of militarism.


Complete involvement of the individual in the inward life of his soul led to another mistake: to the growth of individualism and the neglect of the community, of the collective, of society. More so, of the state, which dealt with the material life of men. Indian philosophy was hardly interested in society. Only Manu, the law-giver was. Neglect of society and state led to the neglect of human welfare and the security of people—indeed to the general neglect of governance.



I think it is because of Buddhism which stunned the nation with its ahimsa and priority of renunciation and Moksha over everything else.

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Postby Keshav » 30 Mar 2008 01:03

mayurav wrote:I think it is because of Buddhism which stunned the nation with its ahimsa and priority of renunciation and Moksha over everything else.


In another thread, someone mentioned the genocide perpetrated by Buddhists. Why is this lethargy (ahimsa and renunciation over everything) the case only in India and not in other countries? It worked with Tibet, but not other Southeast Asian countries.

Mind you, wasn't it the Puranic Hindus who said that one should starve oneself to gain moksha. This doesn't jive with BG but Buddha was the one to break away from it.

Personally, I feel to a large degree, that culture generally trumps religion unless religion is the basis for the civilization or a creation of that civilization as is the case with Sanatana Dharma.

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Postby shiv » 30 Mar 2008 06:32

I have come to believe that santana dharma should be called a "dharma" and not a religion - because it is primarily a dharma. Religions mean that god gets involved. God, as defined in Christianity or Islam is unnecessary for sanatana dharma, and the dharmic concept of "god" is nothing like those of the former religions.

Note that only sanatana dharmis insist on saying "all gods are one". That is not accepted by either Islam or Christianity which insist that one god means a particular god as defined in in their belief system and not "all gods are one" Why then should sanatana dharma force itself to join this exclusive and intolerant thought process and join the religion club.

If dharma is a code of conduct, the dharma comes first and gods are secondary. This is the direct opposite of Islam and Christianity in which the god is first and the code of conduct secondary to that god.

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Postby svinayak » 30 Mar 2008 06:53

shiv wrote:
Note that only sanatana dharmis insist on saying "all gods are one".
That is not accepted by either Islam or Christianity which insist that one god means a particular god as defined in in their belief system and not "all gods are one" Why then should sanatana dharma force itself to join this exclusive and intolerant thought process and join the religion club.

This is only recent saying. It is not a historical saying

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Postby shiv » 30 Mar 2008 06:57

Acharya wrote:
shiv wrote:
Note that only sanatana dharmis insist on saying "all gods are one".
That is not accepted by either Islam or Christianity which insist that one god means a particular god as defined in in their belief system and not "all gods are one" Why then should sanatana dharma force itself to join this exclusive and intolerant thought process and join the religion club.

This is only recent saying. It is not a historical saying


Didn't Vivekananda say pretty much the same thing?

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Postby mayurav » 30 Mar 2008 09:38

Keshav wrote:
mayurav wrote:I think it is because of Buddhism which stunned the nation with its ahimsa and priority of renunciation and Moksha over everything else.


In another thread, someone mentioned the genocide perpetrated by Buddhists. Why is this lethargy (ahimsa and renunciation over everything) the case only in India and not in other countries? It worked with Tibet, but not other Southeast Asian countries.

Mind you, wasn't it the Puranic Hindus who said that one should starve oneself to gain moksha. This doesn't jive with BG but Buddha was the one to break away from it.

Personally, I feel to a large degree, that culture generally trumps religion unless religion is the basis for the civilization or a creation of that civilization as is the case with Sanatana Dharma.


I think you answered the question in the last part of your post. Religion is the basis of our civilization. More generally it could be that the same forcing function can have different effects based on the natural frequency of the substratum. Moksha is very desirable to the Hindus and therefore Buddhism resonated very well, but if everybody decides to pursue it disregarding and neglecting their abilities and duties at their station in life (svadharma) then society will be ruined. Maybe the Mongols and SE Asians did not greatly desire Moksha and Buddhism affected only a small portion of them. Maybe they were too focussed on Artha and Kama and Buddhism's focus on Moksha balanced their societies. Whereas a Hindu society which more or less balanced Kama, Artha, Dharma and Moksha was pushed more towards Moksha by Buddhism and was destabilized.

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Postby satyarthi » 30 Mar 2008 17:47

mayurav wrote:I think it is because of Buddhism which stunned the nation with its ahimsa and priority of renunciation and Moksha over everything else.

Budhism didn't come to India from outside! It arose in India and swept through India without any aid of physical force.

Therefore it is futile to someow disown Buddhism. India wasn't just ready for Budhism, but going by many such isms including the other great tradition Jainism, was a fertile ground for it.

Going even further back in past, archaeological remains suggest even the Indus Valley civilization, which spanned a much vaster area than Egypt and Mesopotamia combined, was relatively very little militarised. Check the following book by Jane McIntosh.

"A peaceful realm"

Author Jane McIntosh meets this challenge by combining the best of current scholarship with her own wide-ranging and thoughtful analysis, to produce an appropriately tentative, yet consistent and plausible, view of the Indus civilization. In the author's own words, "it was an exceptionally well integrated state, in harmony with its environment, where warfare was absent and everyone led a comfortable existence under the benevolent leadership of a dedicated priesthood."


The same genes show up in 20th century in Gandhi and Indian people falling head over heels for him.

We can't disown this national trait by simply cursing Buddhism. Indian nation and dharma's character have a strong liberal, pacifist core. A dharma-yuddha is a war where the combatants put constraints on themselves in a moral conduct of war. Compare that to Islamic Jihad's conduct of a religious-war.

India is different. Budhhism is a product of that character and can't be disowned when convenient.

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Postby ShauryaT » 30 Mar 2008 20:19

shiv wrote:I have come to believe that santana dharma should be called a "dharma" and not a religion - .
OK, I was not insane after all :D

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Postby shiv » 30 Mar 2008 20:31

ShauryaT wrote:
shiv wrote:I have come to believe that santana dharma should be called a "dharma" and not a religion - .
OK, I was not insane after all :D


Not at all. You were dead right,

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Postby Keshav » 30 Mar 2008 21:36

shiv wrote:Didn't Vivekananda say pretty much the same thing?


Vivekananda is new in the larger scheme of things. Historically speaking, I think we were much more arrogant about ourselves. Thats why "Aryavrath" is not defined by race, but by religion, and all those outside of India (i.e. not dharmic) are mleccha.

Lots of Huns, Scythians, and what not were probably converted and given caste to work for the kings. Instead of slavery, this was our requirement for failure in battle.

Why then should sanatana dharma force itself to join this exclusive and intolerant thought process and join the religion club?


Sanatana Dharma cannot join this club simply because no interpretation of our theology can bring out the dangerous, exclusivist ideas, of Abrahamic religions. Its possible for particular sects (i.e. Vaishnavism, Shaivism, etc.) but the religion as a whole, but this won't happen simply because the idea of dharma has usually transcended these sects. Hindus have never fought each on religious grounds.

It is, however, logically fallacious to say that "All Gods are One". It simply isn't true.

If I say that "All Gods are One" and even one person disagrees with me, the whole theory is bunk. Every tom, dick, and harry has his own idea about the nature of God and in our society we have to be respectful to all the ideas. Thus, you have to agree to disagree. Either way, you believe you're right and he's wrong. Thats the model of interaction between Abrahamic and Dharmic in our world today. Ultimately, we believe Self-Realization is moksha. Others believe single-pointed devotion to their God is moksha. There is a difference.

All Gods are not One. That Rig Vedic phrase, I think, has been taken out of context far too many times. All Vedic Gods are One. Indra and Kama might be a little wily some times, but nothing they have ever done goes as far as the Jewish, Christian, and Islamic God. Nothing.

I somewhat disagree with the idea that Hinduism is not a religion in the Western sense. Historically speaking, I feel that was indeed a disconnect between traditions. That is, there were different religions based on devotion to a particular deity - Vishnu and Shiva in particular. The difference between Abrahamic division and division in Hinduism was that dharmic basis was placed on the Vedas which was concrete and the Abrahamic on Abraham who probably didn't exist. Thus, I can make up anything and say Abraham said it. You, however, could not enter a debate in India without knowledge of the Vedas and you could not justify your sect without proper understanding of it. Vaishnavism and Shaivism are thus closer to each other than Christianity and Islam, but if you think about, there are pretty much the same except for devotion to a particular deity. If Vishnu and Shiva combined (i.e. Harihara), there wouldn't be any division, would there?

Hindus are far too "liberal and pacifist" at the core. A little arrogance will not make us bigots.

We can't disown this national trait by simply cursing Buddhism. Indian nation and dharma's character have a strong liberal, pacifist core. A dharma-yuddha is a war where the combatants put constraints on themselves in a moral conduct of war. Compare that to Islamic Jihad's conduct of a religious-war.

India is different. Budhhism is a product of that character and can't be disowned when convenient.


Am I not Hindu if I completely bemoan this aspect of my culture?

Thanks for the history though, I didn't realize it was this deep rooted. I suppose Voltaire was justified in saying "a peaceful and innocent people, equally incapable of hurting others or of defending themselves."
Last edited by Keshav on 30 Mar 2008 22:06, edited 1 time in total.

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Postby Mahendra » 30 Mar 2008 21:59

Every lal, bal, and pal has his own idea

:eek:
Keshav Saar

I dont know if the above is common usage where you come from, Lal, Bal and Pal hold special significance in the Indian Freedom Struggle

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Postby sanjaychoudhry » 30 Mar 2008 22:24

To elaborate:

Lal Bal Pal (Lala Lajpat Rai, Bal Gangadhar Tilak and Bipin Chandra Pal) were the Swadeshi triumvirate who advocated the Swadeshi movement involving the boycott of all imported items and the use of Indian-made goods in 1907.


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lal_Bal_Pal

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Postby Prem » 31 Mar 2008 00:03

shiv wrote:
ShauryaT wrote:
shiv wrote:I have come to believe that santana dharma should be called a "dharma" and not a religion - .
OK, I was not insane after all :D


Not at all. You were dead right,


From the beginning of time there have been onlee One Dharma and One Divine though the expression and manifestation may vary. There is no necessity to define this undefinable phenomenon but to recognize it in various forms and strenghten it.

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Postby satyarthi » 31 Mar 2008 00:48

shiv wrote:
Acharya wrote:
shiv wrote:
Note that only sanatana dharmis insist on saying "all gods are one".
That is not accepted by either Islam or Christianity which insist that one god means a particular god as defined in in their belief system and not "all gods are one" Why then should sanatana dharma force itself to join this exclusive and intolerant thought process and join the religion club.

This is only recent saying. It is not a historical saying


Didn't Vivekananda say pretty much the same thing?


All these arise from few stanzas in the 7th chapter of the Gita, some excerpts from th Rgveda (akam sad vipra bahudhA vadanti), and some quotes from later texts, where essential identity of all Gods is proposed.

Krishna says in Gita, that whichever Devata a person worship, Krishna enforces that person's devotion for that Devata, and in whichever form that Devata is approched, Krishna approaches the devotee in the same form, and whatever fruits a devotee desires from the Devata, it is Krishna that carries it to him.

One must note that the usage of "I" by Krishna is synonymous with the Vedantic "I" or the all pervading self present in all.

Rgvedic "ekam sadvipra..." similarly mentions that the essence of all ythe Devas is same.

Sw. Vivekananda also quoted a shaiva text "shiva-mahimna-stotra" where it is mentioned that just as various rivers approach the same ocean, similarly through many straight or twisted paths, people approach the same God Shiva.

So, this idea is not new.

What was new as proposed by Sri Ramakrishna was that all "religions", including the modern ones like, Islam and Christianity were valid paths to the divine.

This has created a problem for Hindus when they find that muslims and Christians don't particularly appreciate this. God is extremely clearly and exclusively defined in Islam and christianity, and this mixup with Indian Devas, isn't acceptable to them.

Islam and Christianity have many aspects which are anti-Dharma. So a question arises whether Islamic and Christian Gods are to be included in the Dharma.

IMHO, as long as Islam and Christianity maintain their exclusive doctrine, Dharma doesn't have to bother with them. There are already enough Devas and Asuras in Hinduism, no particular need to add a few more.

And if anything in them is anti Dharma, then that can as well be called of "Asuric" origin rather than "Daivic".

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Postby satyarthi » 31 Mar 2008 01:28

Keshav wrote:It is, however, logically fallacious to say that "All Gods are One". It simply isn't true.

Qualify this with saying that all "real Gods" share an identity as aspects of the same supreme Godhead. But there are many people who call some entities "Gods" who qualify in their attributes to be called "Asuras". Those so called Gods can't be equated with the real Gods.

Sri Aurobindo mentioned that the divine-personalities DO EXIST, and that there are Gods on all planes of existence and consciousness. The great Gods of Hnduism belong to a so called "Overmind" plane of consciousness, where they appear as separate personalities, but appear as aspects of one Godhead in the Supermind plane. Asuras and undivine personalities have no facility in higher planes of consciousness such as the "Overmind" or the "Supermind". They are confined to lower planes primarily mental-vital.

He also mentioned that even though Gods appear as different personalities in "Overmind" with independent action, there is not likely to be any strife amongst them, since they are stationed in truth and are essentially aspects of a single divine.

This is the key to understand Hindu idea of how disparate Gods can be "one".
All Gods are not One. That Rig Vedic phrase, I think, has been taken out of context far too many times. All Vedic Gods are One. Indra and Kama might be a little wily some times, but nothing they have ever done goes as far as the Jewish, Christian, and Islamic God. Nothing.

Yes. One has to clarify that a God is not some arbitrary idea. But has to qualify the test of true divinity. Allah in his brutality, exclusivity, and in being violently opposed to Dharma is more an Asura than a Deva from a Hindu viewpoint.
Am I not Hindu if I completely bemoan this aspect of my culture?
Of course you can bemoan Budhism. That wasn't the point of contention. The point was whether Budhism stunned India for the irst time or whether India is thus "stunned" from the very beginning.
I suppose Voltaire was justified in saying "a peaceful and innocent people, equally incapable of hurting others or of defending themselves."

I wouldn't jump to conclusions. What defended hinduism through the ages against all sorts of assaults? May be the Gods. Or may be this sense of "truth" in divinity kept hindus from yielding even while bending. Peace comes when internal discords are resolved. Indians were peaceful perhaps because they had resolved those spiritual/existential conflicts to a large degree. And any invading religion couldn't convince them otherwise, since it wasn't sword but an inner conviction reached from continued spiritual practices that had caused the conviction. And mere sword wouldn't convince the hindus otherwise.


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