|Vol. IV, No. 10 30 Aswin 2007, October 16 1950, Annas Four – Air Mail-/4/6|
By – Alim T. Gidvani
The Hindus of Free Bharat are passing through a period of great trial. The partition of the country into Bharat and Pakistan has created problems which appear to have baffled the intelligence of the leaders of the land. The problem of Kashmir and the problem of Rehabilitation of millions of Hindus displaced from Pakistan late the most knotty of the problems. Many Hindus honestly feel that the leaders of the land have mishandled both these problems. The Hindus can not afford to yield to despair. They possess a rich heritage. The Country that produced men of action like Chandra Gupta, Ashoka and Samudra Gupta, politicians and scientists like Brihaspati, Chanakya, Varahamihira and Sushruta, philosophers like Gautama, Kanada, Badarayana, poets like Valmiki, Vyasa and Kalidasa and spiritual giants like Sri Krishna, Budha and ‘Shankara has not exhausted herself. Even as she produced Sri Ramakrishna, a Vivekananda, a J. C. Bose, a Tagore and Mahatma Gandhi, she will from her inexhaustible vitality produce a hero who will dispel the glows that has enveloped us today and show a solution for the problems that face us today.
Be Proud of Dharma:
Every Hindu should be fully conscious of the glory of his religion. He should try to understand as fully as possible the teachings of Hinduism and know its history. The modern Hindu witty has unfortunately fallen from the height of a vigorous pursuit of life's ideals to the grovelling depth of passive acquiscence and submission. It appears to have lost all initiative. That initiative has got to be revived. The religion and culture of Hindus is primarily based on the Vedas which some place even earlier than 1500 B.C. These Vedas, four in number contain 24000 hymns which have been handed down by oral tradition. Hinduism is not based on the teachings of any single prophet or incarnation of God, nor on the teachings of any one saint, sage or religious reformer. It is a synthesis of different types of religions experiences which are not allowed to contradict or cancel each other but which adjust them-selves as co-related parts of one Whole. Understood in that form Hinduism may be called a universal religion.
Hinduism has been very aptly defined by a thinker as, a monistic religion which, on its theoretical side, believes in one spiritual Reality or Existence which reveals itself as this and many other worlds, and exists everywhere in the universe and beyond it and dwells in every living being as its inmost self, its Wisest Ruler and Supreme Lord.’ The essential beauty about Hinduism is that it concedes that while God is one, there are many different ways of reaching Him, just as there are many paths that lead to the same destination.
The Three Challenges
The history of 4000 years has established beyond question the vitality of Hinduism which has successfully withstood repeated severe onslaughts. Surveying these onslaughts one may make mention of the Buddhist onslaught in 6th. century B.C. While at a certain stage half of Bharat came to accept, under Buddhist influence, the old religion in a restricted ethical sense, within a few centuries Bharat absorbed the new sect into the parent body and Buddhism did not survive as an independent religion in Bharat. The second major onslaught was from Moslems. But even Muslims who conquered and converted almost to a man great countries like Persia, Turkey, Egypt, Afghanistan and parts of Europe, could not affect Hinduism much. The Vedas were preserved against their vandalism by being handed down through the oral tradition and the purity and high character of Hindu women preserved Hinduism inspite of all troubles.
The third onslaught was from Christianity. In the first century came to Bharat St. Thomas who preached in Travancore—Cochin but the influence of his preachings did not travel far and even in Kerala, the Centre of his activity, not even half the population could be converted. In the 6th century the Portuguese tried but failed. The Spaniards and the Portugese had forced their religion on the Red Indians of Central and South America; Spain had forcibly converted the whole of Philippines; but Portugal could not convert the whole of even the small tract Goa? A fresh onslaught came in the British period when Christian missionaries influenced the thought of the western-educated Bharatis. But soon that influence waned and Hinduism came out triumphant.
Those who fear that Hindu majority of Free Bharat shall torture Muslim minority, fail to understand Hinduism. This emphasis on the secular character of the “Indian Union” is un-called for. Hinduism does not teach hatred. If it teaches anything it is essentially Love and Tolerance. n