Can Hinduism survive so much attack?
By J.G. Arora
A unilateral war against Hinduism is being waged by anti-Hindu forces to wipe out Hinduism from the face of the earth the way other native cultures and religions have been obliterated from the world.
It is tragic that Hinduism, the faith proclaiming universal brotherhood and oneness of humanity is the target of vexatious attacks, and is threatened with extinction.
Bharatvarsh comprising the present day India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nepal, Afghanistan and even Zabol in Iran was Hindu land till Muslims attacked the subcontinent in the 8th century. Hindus lost Afghanistan to Muslims in 987 in a fiercely fought battle. After many centuries, Muslims got Pakistan in 1947.
In 1971, East Pakistan became Bangladesh. Though India is a secular republic, Pakistan and Bangladesh are Islamic republics and have driven out most of the Hindus and Sikhs from their land.
And in independent India, Hindus have undergone genocide and eviction from Kashmir to become refugees in their own country. And even this tragedy has not stirred India?s secular soul.
Besides, Pakistan?s ISI and Bangladesh are determined to create one more Islamic country on Indian soil for which they have sent many terrorists, Pakistanis and crores of Bangladeshis into India. Moreover, ISI has planted numerous madrasas on India?s border with Bangladesh, Nepal and Pakistan.
Since secularism implies separation of State and religion, government control over Hindu temples is anti-secular, and deprives temples of their income. Besides, it is discriminatory since only Hindu places of worship have been brought under government control.
If Pakistan and Bangladesh are focussed to Islamize India, missionaries are determined to Christianize India. While addressing bishops and priests in New Delhi on November 7, 1999 (which happened to be Diwali, an important Hindu festival), Pope John Paul II gave a call to convert Asia to Christianity as follows:-
?Just as the first millennium saw the Cross firmly planted in the soil of Europe, and the second in that of America and Africa, so may the Third Christian millennium witness a great harvest of faith on this vast and vital continent.?
Hindus and India are favourite targets for this harvest of faith. Missionaries have already conquered the north-east India. Every where else in India, missionaries and their non-government organisations (NGOs) having large funds at their disposal are aggressively busy converting poorer Hindus to Christianity under pretence of charitable social service.
Reinhard Bonnke, the global evangelist famous for his crusades in Africa, is reported to have stated that during 20 years of his activity in Africa, Christian population rose from 2 per cent to 40 per cent, and now India tops on his conversion agenda.
With each passing day, India is becoming more Islamic and more Christian; and less Hindu.
The Only Solution
Though for several centuries, Hindus fought the invaders bravely to defend their faith and motherland, Macaulay?s education has made Hindus ignorant of their religion, heritage and history; and indifferent to attacks on Hinduism.
Hindus have to re-invent themselves, become pro-active, and tackle this attack at political, social and religious levels.
Following steps must be taken immediately if Hinduism is to survive the ceaseless onslaught.
Though a sublime concept, ?secularism? has been wrongly equated with anti-Hinduism in India. Since in the name of secularism, sectarian and anti-Hindu agenda is being followed, Hindus and their organisations have to assert themselves and force the government to act as follows:
Article 30 of the Indian Constitution giving special privileges to minorities regarding educational institutions is fragmenting Hindu society since various Hindu sects claim non-Hindu status to get benefit of Article 30. Vide the Supreme Court?s judgement reported as Bramchari Sidheswar Shai & Others versus State of West Bengal (AIR 1995 Supreme Court 2089), even Ramakrishna Mission, a leading Hindu organisation, unsuccessfully claimed a minority (non-Hindu) status to fall under Article 30. Justice demands that fundamental right under Article 30 must be extended to every community, whether majority or minority.
Government control over Hindu temples is another aberration. Since secularism implies separation of State and religion, government control over Hindu temples is anti-secular, and deprives temples of their income. Besides, it is discriminatory as only Hindu places of worship have been brought under government control.
In a truly secular country, all religious communities must have identical rights. Accordingly, constitutional direction as per Article 44 regarding Uniform Civil Code has to be implemented urgently. And none can have any objection to Hindus being treated at par with other communities.
Conferring a special status on Muslim-majority Jammu and Kashmir, Article 370 has led to genocide of Hindus and their eviction from Kashmir. To bring Jammu and Kashmir at par with other states, Article 370 has to be abrogated.
And instead of having passport and visa-free Muzaffarabad-Srinagar bus services which would open floodgates for Pakistani infiltrators, all steps to deport Bangladeshi and Pakistani infiltrators have to be taken immediately. Besides, terrorist training camps in Pakistan and Bangladesh have to be smashed; and if necessary, an all-out war with these nations to make them see reason has to be undertaken.
Hindus have undergone genocide and eviction from Kashmir to become refugees in their own country. And even this tragedy has not stirred India?s secular soul.
In India, many of print and electronic media are indulging in blatant anti-Hindu propaganda. They are denigrating Hinduism, spreading misinformation about Hindu scriptures, dividing Hindu society and hurting Hindu sentiments. Though deliberate and malicious act intended to outrage religious feelings of any community is a non-bailable offence punishable with imprisonment of upto three years and/or fine under Section 295-A of the Indian Penal Code, Hindu reluctance for legal action has emboldened anti-Hindus to continue their tirade.
Besides taking legal action against malicious propaganda, and boycotting anti-Hindu media, Hindus must have unbiased daily newspapers and television channels in various languages to defend Hinduism, and to enlighten the readers about Hindu religion, heritage and history.
Any attempt at conversion from one religion to another by fraud, inducement or coercion is horrible, and must be defeated.
Apart from helping the needy sections of society, Hindus and their organisations have to confront and thwart those who are bent upon converting Hindus to Christianity by deception, enticement or force. Inflow of foreign funds meant for subversion and conversion has to be barred. Conversion by fraud, allurement or coercion must be banned. Besides thwarting questionable conversion, all efforts to welcome the converts back to Hindu fold have to be made.
Only a united Hindu society can tackle anti-Hindu forces. Besides, there is an urgent need for a strong global Hindu forum covering all Hindu sects.
Four Vedas containing 20,416 verses, many Upanishads, Ramayana with 24,000 stanzas, Mahabharata with 1,00,000 stanzas, and several other holy books are the sources of Hinduism. Codification of Hinduism in one book is indispensable to widen its reach. For this codification, appropriate Vedic mantras and shlokas of the Ramayana, the Mahabharata (which contains the Bhagvad Gita), and Tirukkural etc. will provide basic material.
As per the Mahabharata, samvibhaga (sharing of wealth) is an important attribute of Dharma. Many Vedic mantras direct humans to share their wealth with others. Rig Veda (1-15-8) stipulates, ?Let us become God?s instruments and distribute fortune to the poor and needy.? Similarly, the Atharva Veda (3-30-7) commands humans to share their comforts with others. Apart from helping the needy, practice of samvibhaga will unite Hindu society. If affluent Hindus utilise one per cent of their income to help vulnerable sections, expansionist religions will be unable to prey upon Hindu society.
Besides, every Hindu family has to devote time to defend Hinduism. As per the Mahabharata, Dharmo rakshiti rakshitaha (Dharma protects those who protect Dharma).
Remember Your History
Hindus need to remember valour of Dahir, Lalitaditya, Bappa Rawal, Raja Bhoja, Jayapala, Vidyadhar Chandel, Bhimadeva, Govindachandra, Prithviraj Chauhan, Lakshman Sen, Pratap Rudra, Hakka (Harihara), Bukka (Bukkaraya), Kota Rani, Rana Pratap, Chhatrapati Shiva Ji, Hari Singh Nalwa and many others who defended their faith and every inch of motherland.
Now or Never
Lulled into complacence, many Hindus feel that since Hinduism has survived for thousands of years, it will continue to flourish for ever. But they overlook the worst ever attack threatening Hinduism now.
Unless Hindus confront their tormentors, and take the above-mentioned measures immediately, Hinduism, also known as eternal religion (Sanatan Dharma), will vanish from this earth just in a few decades.
Any further delay or reluctance in fighting the attack will hasten disappearance of Hinduism from the world.
(Author is the former Chief Commissioner of Income Tax. His e-mail address is: firstname.lastname@example.org)