Ask ‘WHY’ to Religious Conversion

via Thazhethu Chandran published on May 23, 2007

[Mr. Thazhethu Chandran was taking part in a serious debate on religious conversion of Hindus to other organized religions. The debate held after being noticed the latest reported conversion of Mr. Ranjith, Thiruvananthapuram and Suresh Nair, Ernakulam to Christianity. There are many, still doesn’t have the knowledge strength or logic sense to justify our self while the converted lobby appears with silly reasons and questions. In order to grasp the content on a point wise, it has been presented in a question-answer mode by the author]


Question: I had a miraculous experience of a beam of light embracing me. After that my worries were disappeared and I gained peace of mind. I came to know that it is the love of Jesus and now I am converted to Christianity. 
 
Answer: Who told you that is the love of Jesus? Did Jesus himself say so? Did the light speak to you to this effect? Wasn’t it the “interpretation” of the people whom you had consulted? What if it was the grace of Krishna, your onetime favorite deity? Or Buddha or Allah? How can you confirm this claim unless the divine entity in question somehow confirms this by him self? Until then it should remain just an “interpretation”.  
 
The peace of mind which you experienced would have been exactly the same even if you consider it as the grace of Krishna or Devi. Of course, you may take it as a miracle if you feel so. But need not ascribe the credit to Jesus based on someone else’s opinion. 
 
Question: What’s wrong in believing in Jesus? 
 
Answer: There is absolute no harm in believing in Jesus. He was one among thousands of great divine personality lived and died on this earth. But why do you think you have to join a gang who had twisted his teachings for their own personal interests in order to believe and love Jesus?  
 
Try to tell those people this: “Ok. I love and worship Jesus, but let me do it in my own personal way. For this I need not join your church”. Do you think they will agree to such ideas? Never! They will say Jesus will not save you unless you get baptized.  
 
Now think about this. If their real intention is your salvation through Jesus why would they object to this idea? Please try to understand that they do not really care for your salvation. This is just an organization which is interested only in increasing the membership count and in turn interested only in the power, pride, wealth and fame that come along with it. They may offer you some peanuts initially and trap you in to taking their membership. First they will feed you and once you are in, they will feed ON you.    
 
It is a pity that you fell for those well trained conmen and allowed yourself to be brainwashed into accepting their membership. 
 
Question: Christianity is just another religion like Hinduism. Don’t I have the freedom to choose what I like? 
 
Answer: Oh yes! You have the freedom. But by the same token you should acknowledge the freedom of your son when he is choosing alcohol (which he likes) instead of milk (which you know is good for him). You should let your daughter marry an al-quaida terrorist just because she has the freedom to choose what she likes.  
 
Do not equate the freedom to choose between Pizza and KFC with choices that will affect your entire life. Unless you really study both the sides thoroughly and weigh out the pros and cons of both sides, you can not make the best choice. What you have done is to choose 
something based on a stray incident of your liking which is misinterpreted by some people with a specific agenda who took advantage of your vulnerable situation.  
 
You were born into a great religion. What do you know about Hinduism? First of all try to learn about your own religion. If it has stood the test of time for more than 10000 years, there must be some substance in it. That too after facing invasions after invasions, through out the history. Show me one faith or culture that survived for such a long period. Try to learn the fundamentals of our religion – the philosophy. Try to learn the scientific reasons behind apparently meaningless practices and rituals. I am so sure that it is your ignorance of your own strength that makes you vulnerable to temptations. Do not act like a beggar who goes own begging without knowing that his begging bowl is solid gold worth millions. 
 
Even after this if you are not convinced, then do the same study on the other religion and compare. Have done any such comparisons?  
 
Just to make the point clear let’s take two of  the most famous statements of Jesus and analyze them in our own context.  
 
Jesus said: The kingdom of heaven is within you.  
 
If the kingdom of heaven is within me, then can anyone else really help me to find that? I have to look for it all by myself. Probably others can guide me if I am going in to wrong direction. So fundamentally it is an introspective analysis that will reveal the kingdom of heaven to me. What else had our ancient masters said? What else is austerity (Thapas)? Where do you find the role of organized religion in this? 
 
Secondly, Jesus said to the effect “I am the door to the kingdom of heaven and no one can enter there without passing through ‘I”. What does that mean? Does it mean that the individual called “Jesus” is the only way? Then all those who lived before Jesus had no chance to reach the kingdom of heaven. But it cannot be so. So it is clear that the “I” in that statement 
does not refer to Jesus as a person but the “I” in Jesus which is the same in all of us. That “I” is called as “Atman” or Self by the Hindus.  
 
All Mahatmas speak the same truth. The jasmine in our own courtyard doesn’t smell good not because there is no smell, but you never cared to open your nose. Now tell me, if the heaven is within me and the door is my self why do we need to join any gang? Can’t you do the same thing without changing the label on your collar?  
 
If you can understand this much, you can easily understand that taking membership in a church is nothing better than taking membership in a political party. The more members are there the stronger the party becomes in terms of power and money. Why don’t you strengthen your own family and reap better benefits instead of running away and joining another. 
 
Question: But there are so many miracles happening right in front of our eyes in the name of Jesus. So many people are getting cured. So many problems are solved. And the church is making the stage for all these to happen. 
 
Answer: If that is your criteria, you are far away from correct statistics. The miraculous experiences under gone by Hindu devotees will out number if you count all the other religions put together. Just listen to the miraculous real life incidents told by the devotees of Guruvayoorappan or Chottanikkara Bhagavathi or Saibaba or Amritandamayi Devi. Is there any shortage? Do you think it is the image of Jesus Christ on the cross that is doing the trick? It is your faith, your devotion, your earnestness and strong and heartfelt desire (not forgetting the Karmic influences) that create the situation for a miracle to happen.  
 
Are you trying to say that you took this decision just because of a single miracle happened to you? Suppose, tomorrow you are in a certain crisis and you pray to Jesus but nothing happens. Will you stop believe in him and quit Christianity?  
 
Question: There are many foolish beliefs, rituals and practices in Hinduism which made me feel ashamed in front of others. 
 
Answer: Is there anything more foolish than worshiping the image of your beloved deity as nailed to a cross bleeding and in eternal suffering? What a sadistic mentality is this? Such a thing is beyond my concept of divinity and worship. What do you say about this? 
 
Question: That image is there to remind us of the great sacrifice done by Jesus for rescuing us from our sin and to be thankful to him. 
 
Answer: Ok, there you have no problem to reconcile and accept the concepts and attitude behind such a foolish and horrible practice. But when it comes to our own system everything is just nonsense!  
 
Have you ever bothered to check out the logic behind any of those so called foolish Hindu practices? Do you have any idea that most of these seemingly meaningless rituals have scientifically proven benefits on physical and subtle realms?.  
 
Dear friend. Open your eyes and ears. Use your intelligence. Make some effort to know and understand our own faith, culture and heritage. Once your ignorance is shattered, you will not be ashamed of you religion. You don’t have to look for anything anywhere else. It is all here. With this knowledge, you must be able to proclaim proudly and loudly that “I am a Hindu, and I can tell you why”.


 

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