In defense of the Sacred

via Prof. C. I. Issac published on April 3, 2010

The study on religious aspects of Hindus in American Academy of Religion [AAR] is now, particularly some scholar elements, deliberately attempting to tarnish its true image through some, said to be ‘scholarly productions’. The book ‘Invading the Sacred’ edited by Krishnan Ramaswamy and others gives a thumbnail picture of its depth and intensity. AAR is an important and influential institution of academic studies of religion in USA. “Unlike in India, the academic study of religion in USA is a major discipline involving over 8000 university professors, most of who are members of AAR”1. Therefore this academy’s anti-Hindu researches will represent the Hindu image negatively in America and elsewhere.  Moreover these anti-Hinduism academic studies are now the cruel weapon in the hands of Christian churches in USA. By which they are effectively spreading Hindu-phobia, the term coined by Rajiv Malhotra2 through all possible means. Thus the spontaneity and virginity of pagan religion is now subjected to the malicious exercise of intolerant and hegemonic academic-Church nexus. Under the academic support from the AAR they projects Hinduism as a ‘pig-pen of the East and a dirty dignity destroying’ religion3.

The malady is that a set of Indian intelligentsia of Colonial subjectivity in India as well as abroad attests the stance of the spoke-persons of Hindu-phobia. To them secularism is the condemnation of pagan religious convictions in general and particularly of Hindus. In the direction of Hindu, secularism is an immaterial concept. In their tradition secularism is more than toleration since the days of Vedas and it is the synonym to the recognition of all creeds and ideologies as means to the realization of the Ultimate Truth4. Thus Sanathana Dharma [eternal truth], the core of Hindu life, believes that “All religions are the outcome of the quest of man for God”5. “All the Hindu scriptures have upheld this view. Therefore there was never any room for religious conflict in India”6. On the other hand, secularism of the West has no separate entity from the Semitic/Christian traditions. Religion and state apparatus at present in the West are inseparable entities like Siamese twins7. Above all Anti-Hinduism studies particularly in the West are receiving the patronage of aforesaid class of Indian intellectuals. Similarly those who attempt to study Hindu religion is using Semitic yard sticks to comprehend Hinduism is yet another paradox. Such studies are, no doubt, heralded by certain pre-conceived notions.

The centre of the faith of Semitic religions from the Garden of Eden to the pulpit of the day are pivoting on non-rational and illogical canons such as sex, animal like sex relations, sin of conjugal relations, castration, wrath of god, selfish god, human sacrifice, hell, material or worldly enjoyment guarantees to the souls in the heaven, etc. Most of its tenets are self contradictory. All the above contentions of the Semitic religions are no more debated in the Hindu religious texts or subject to discussion in the Hindu spiritualistic scenario. To a Hindu all these are not at all a question of debate. According to Vedas, the authority of Hindu religious convictions, man is “amruthasya puthraha” [Children of immortality] and non-dual relation between the Creator and the Creation. More over there are time tested social mechanisms in the Hindu ways of life to sort-out all such questions raised by the Semitic religions. “The fact that Hinduism was able to resist the onslaught of Islam for over 750 years, and has emerged stronger after over 150 years challenge by Christianity, has now made the West realize that what it had previously considered to be no more than primitive superstitions, held together by strange system of social organization which was termed ‘caste’, must have some inherent values of high significance”8. Caste was not a curse and was an organic mechanism in the traditional Hindu society. Its harmonious utilization maintained the momentum and the un-interrupted continuity of the Hindu social-fabric in the sub-continent9.
Semitic religion claims that they are monotheistic. Simultaneously they accept the divine existence of arch-angel and angels. Gabriel and Michael are messengers of the other world of the Semitic religions. The Holy Spirit became an instrumental to the Immaculate Conception in Mary. Christianity claims trinity of god and the extraordinary influence of saints before the Father and Son. Such a hierarchical structure of Father, Son, Holy Ghost, angels and saints altogether deactivate the rationale of its monotheistic claims.  The pantheon of Hindu is static and constant; on the other hand the frontiers of saints in the Church is ever expanding phenomenon. The utmost absurdity is that the same Christian Church ridicules Hindus as polytheistic. Wrapping up of the said innate contradictions of the Faith is the main concern of the present-day academic study of religion in USA.

The religion Hinduism is the only rationale and surviving creed. That is why holistic medicine [for instance yoga] and business schools of America counting it as a source of their hope. In order to negate this growing acceptance of Hindu religion in the West, the Christian back studies on Hinduism is overflowed with ‘political use of psychology’10. Above all it is an essential condition for the survival of the Church in the new millennium. That is why Christiane Hartnack in her work ‘Psychoanalysis in Colonial India’ [see p 76 of the book] openly claims that “Hindus became psychologically stuck in a dark age, while Europeans had proceeded to psychologically advanced stage” 11.

The present academic and theological exercise going on in the Church of the West, especially in USA, is targeting to vulgarize Hindu pantheons and sages in order to neutralize Hindu morale. The theme of the book “Invading the Sacred” is widely spreading ‘Hindu-phobia’ of USA; the Christian conspiracy against the sacred structure of Mother India. The apostles of ‘Hindu-phobia’ through their scholastic exercises are attempting to reduce the Hindu as ‘pig-pen of the East and a dirty dignity destroying’ religion. They are using the space of their scholarship to portrait; our sages are sexually disturbed and abusively homosexual, their pathological sexual conditions are subjected to psychoanalysis framework designed by Sigmund Freud, Hindu goddess are sex maniac and demonic persons, Lord Ganesha’s trunk signifies a ‘limp phallus’, Tantra is a disguised and deceitful pornography intended to exploit lower jatis, delineation of Siva-Ganaesa combat as  the Indian version of classical Oedipal Conflict, etc are some typical examples cited by these theological scholars to reduce Indian mythology as the product of an age-old sexual anarchy12. In order to reduce Hindu religious society as whole into a corpse of anachronistic social entity, they are hiring tools from Sigmund Freud [1856-1939]. All these exercises are notwithstanding the fact that “This is the India that is taking shape today in new setting, the same ancient India but adopting necessary changes. Much dead wood is being cut and removed. This courage to change a Smrti, and that too peacefully, is purely a Hindu heritage. No other religion has shown that courage. In all other religions, Smrtis are in all; they cannot touch, and if any reformer attempts to change them, he is persecuted and killed”13.

It is awfully clear that behind all these misrepresentation and vulgarization of Indian signs of faith through the western scholastic exercise; one cannot wipe out India’s colonized intelligentsia’s benediction in the rear of this parody. For instance, Sarah Caldwell in her research paper “The Bloodthirsty Tongue and the Self-Feeding Breast: Homosexual Fellatio in a South Indian Ritual Tradition”14 explains the Kali worship of Kerala, which is far from the trace of fact or truth. No doubt, the reading of her ‘Kali Cult in Kerala’ crossed all the limits of modern secular notions of give and take respect. Behind Sarah’s application of vulgarity in the Kali worship of Kerala, surely there are some self-contemptuous Indian intelligentsias of Colonial subjectivity.

According to the book “Invading the Sacred”, Hindu-phobia of USA is not an accidental or solitary blossoming of an intellectual-pervert. Paul Courtright on Ganesha, Dr. Patrick Bresnan on Shiva, Stanley Kurtz on non-loving Hindu specific mother-hood, Prof. David Gordon White’s ‘Kiss of the Yogini –Tantric Sex in its South Asian Context, Jeffrey Kripal’s findings of Sri Ramakrishna Paramahansa’s homosexuality, Christiane Hartnack’s Psychoanalysis in Colonial India, the never exhausting  academic search of Wendy Doniger to find fault with Hindu ways, etc are some among the whole-host of Hindu-phobic literary creations that circulating in the contemporary academic circles of USA. Wendy Doniger, by means of her Hindu-phobia, secured acceptance in the elite academic circles of USA. Her recent book ‘The Hindu: An Alternative History’, intended to blemish Hindus and Indians, now included as a text of the Chicago University is, no doubt, another spike in her cap. Her contemptuous finding is that Hindus had a canon! [See p 25of the book]. Her readings of Vedas, particularly of beef eating, cow sacrifice, etc are not much differed from the view of JNU historians. This similarity is not at all an accidental coincidence. It is purposeful. Her academic enthusiasm and aesthetic [sadistic] enjoyment is not tiring out with such ‘pick and choose’ research and furthermore ends with the sketch of ‘Sri Krishna’ sitting in the thigh of nude woman on the cover of the book.

Before the above highlighted social as well as cultural belittling of Hindus by the Hindu-phobic West under the moral support of the Indian intelligentsia of Colonial Subjectivity; an awakening of the Hindu spirit is inevitable. Thus the word of Anne Besant is relevant: “If Hindus do not maintain Hinduism, who shall save it?  If India’s own children do not cling to her faith, who shall guard it? India alone can save India, and India and Hinduism are one”. Thus being a Hindu by Karma, I am forced to answer some of the AAR charges within the ambit of Hindu tradition of recognition of all creeds. The Hindu tradition which is absolutely differing from the Abrahamic tradition which fosters: “sexism, racism, the intolerance of difference, and the desecration of the natural environment. The Church, throughout much of its history, has demonstrated a disregard for human freedom, dignity and self-determination.  It has attempted to control, contain and confine spirituality, the relationship between an individual and God. As a result, Christianity has helped to create a society in which people are alienated not only from each other but also from the divine”15. The result is the fragility of the faith in Europe. On the other hand, one cannot ignore the fact that for more than two thousand years Hindu as a religion and culture withstands assaults and cultural invasions of Abrahamic religions.    

Freud was basically a practicing neurologist and the founder of psychoanalysis. He coined examples from the Judeo-Christian experience. His target group was patients. Patients not completely incorporate the cross-section of the society. Religion and faith is the core of hither to all the societies. Freud being an atheist is ignoring this sober aspect of the social equation. Thus the use of his tool to study of the Hindu religious transactions is ridiculous and a futile exercise. It is because of the reason that the space, morphology and structure of the Hindu dharma [religion] have no trace resemblance with Semitic religions. Freud evolved his conceptual frame work of religion from his Abrahamic religious experience.  

The framework of Freudian paradigm Oedipal Conflict is conveniently superimposed over Ganesha by the Hindu-phobic studies in America. He borrowed the term Oedipal from Greek mythology and induced as a clinical terminology in the new branch, psychoanalysis. Why he adopted a terminology from Greek while plenty of appropriate terms are available in the Bible? [Old Testament – Genesis]. What is the hermeneutics at the back of the conflict between Cain and Abel? The book Genesis tells that at the time of this conflict there was in the world only one female and three males. For sure while Cain and Abel attained puberty the question of mating became a serious matter. The only available female as per the bible is Eve; their mother. This question of sharing sex led to the conflict between them and thus ended in the killing of Abel. Adam was already castrated by Jehovah as a punishment to his sexual relation with Eve. Thus the probability of sex related feud is very high in the said situation.

Jehovah hated sex relation. The centre of the Abrahamic faith is the sin behind the sex. Thus Adam was castrated with the curse of God. “You will have to work hard and sweat to make the soil produce anything, until you go back to the soil from which you were formed” 16.  Again there are references to such several castrations in the bible. Such last one is the castration of his only begotten son while he incarnated as man. Even though Martha, Miriam of Magdalene, etc all loved him but Jehovah forced him to court the path of crucifixion. The mission of Jehovah in the world can fulfill without the bloodbath of crucifixion. Why Jehovah can’t prefer the style of functioning of the Hindu incarnations? Really Jehovah was bit jealous of his Son’s marital life, the intrinsic worth of the world, which is a forbidden fruit to him so far. Thus He castrated His Son. Here Jehovah is chronic psychic case and to be subjected to Freud’s psychoanalysis. According the gospels Zechariah, the guardian of John the Baptist, was also subjected to the castration. Joseph, the guardian of Jesus, was yet another person subjected to ‘divine castration’.  Before Freud there were sufficient Judeo-Christian occurrences. But why he searched a paradigm from Greek myth? Either he feared the wrath of the Church or to belittle paganism of the Greek.  The same is the case with Paul Courtright. His observations regarding to Ganesha derived out of obsession. The very foundation of Freud’s scientific theory was derived from cryptic Judeo-Christian ethos. “Its very structure was church-like, in that psychoanalytic treatments in Freudian practice were modeled after the Catholic confessional”17. 

Sarah Caldwell was in search of a novel paradigm from the contemporary Hindu religion to make suitable to the Freudian psychoanalysis. Her work “The Bloodthirsty Tongue and the Self-Feeding Breast: Homosexual Fellatio in a South Indian Ritual Tradition” reserves space for the nonexistent Kali worship of Kerala. In the Christian back ground there are enough and more competent characters than Kali of Kerala. But she deliberately concentrates on a non familiar character to the West. Why not Mary? Until 16th century Mother Mary was not included in the galaxy of the saints. It was because of the reason that Mary as woman bears the blots of ‘original sin’ opened up by Eve in the Garden of Eden. Above the miraculous Parthenogenesis theory in relation to Mother Mary was evolved through translation confusion. In Hebrew language meaning of the word “Almah” is a married Jew lady, aristocratic Jew lady, virgin, beautiful, etc. The word “Almah” is translated to Greek: ‘Partheno’. Its meaning in Greek is virgin. Septuagint Bible brought such a meaning to Almah. That is why Christians began to believe that Mary, the mother of Jesus as virgin.

Castrated Joseph became instrumental to the guardianship of Mary’s first son. Her immaculate conception is clinically not proven but really Mary was the first mother with a pennies. Otherwise clinically the Immaculate Conception is impossible. Hence, still persisting doubts over her Immaculate Conception. Sarah Caldwell knows this aspect well. But she wrongly attributes the self-semination tradition of Christianity over the goddess Kali.  Why not Sarah Caldwell can make study on the Mary worship [of Kerala specific if she is very particular to this State] instead of its Kali worship? Are the worship of Mary is the part of the homosexual psychopathology of Christians? 

Goddesses are to Hindus much differed from Eve or Mother Mary of the Christians. They are representing all powerful and chaste Indian womanhood tradition since the days of Vedas. These female supernatural beings are the celestial representation of Indian feminity. Respect and more-equal priority that enjoying by the Indian women is the centre of Kali worship.  Therefore, Sarah’s effort to superimpose Freudian psychoanalysis paradigm over Kali worship is to vulgarize Hindu standpoint of womanhood and no doubt, it is a futile and barren exercise. According to the scriptures of Abrahamic religions women is only an instrument of reproduction. To them woman is an embodiment of deception. They can ensure salvation only through motherhood18. “As in all the churches of God’s people women should keep quiet in the meetings. They are not allowed to speak; the Jewish Law says, they must not be in charge”19.

The Christians, irrespective of their rites difference, are considering Christ as the bride groom and the Church as bride. The laity forms the Church. Neo-Protestants and Catholic charismatic movements of the day at their spiritual assemblage, during the climax of their worship, the women folk really reaching to a hysteric stage where they are elevating to a mental state which gives them enjoyment of physical wedlock with Jesus. In such assemblages men folk as a whole is subjecting to either self-castration or homosexual enjoyment of trickling. The ultimate goal of each and every nun of the Catholic Church is to share the bridal-chamber with Christ. Is it a phallic worship? It is vulgar and contemptuous than the Hindu’s linga worship. Are the nuns living in schizophrenic condition? Really this hierarchical structure of the Church based on “first sin” itself is pivoting in a certain degree of psychological disorder.

No doubt Freud the father of modern psychoanalysis identified devotion to personal god as sex. Freud in his essay on “Obsessive Actions and Religious Actions” pointing that there is more than a superficial resemblance between the obsessive acts of neurotics and religious observances. This finding, undoubtedly, was derived from the European Christian experience of Freud.

Catholic monasteries and convents are still acquiring notoriety for its homosexuality and pedophilia. When living examples [in the Church] are at the finger tip of Sarah why she is striving to find instances for homosexuality in the Hindu myth? Hindu-phobic from the Christian world conveniently evades from the instances of frequent occurrences of sex related crimes, rape and unwanted pregnancies in the nunneries and the fast spreading epidemic of pedophilia among Catholic priests and evangelical ministers. No doubt certain degree of psychological disorder is now chasing the Church in the new millennium all over.  One could not ignore the case of Rev. Lawrence C. Murphy of Milwaukee Archdiocese, Wisconsin state of USA. In the nineties of the last century this catholic priest sexually molested 200 deaf boys20. The church authorities of USA had informed Vatican for action against Rev. Murphy for his pedophilic activities. It is not a matter of shame or unethical to Vatican, because now it is very common. Vatican, as usually, followed its lukewarm attitude towards the sexually perverted priest, Rev. Murphy. So far no action is reported. The priest died in 1998 with the honour of minister. Vatican itself is not free from this vice. Here it is relevant to recollect the utterance of Jesus before the Pharisees that “He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her” 21. 

Ninety percent of the bloodbath in the history so far was the contribution of the intolerant Abrahamic religions. As you think, Christianity fundamentally not a religion of peace from its very inception. “Do you think that I have come to bring peace to the world. No, I did not come to bring peace, but a word. I came to set sons against their fathers, daughters against their mothers, daughters-in-law against their mothers-in-law”22. In Crusades, Inquisition, Reformation and Counter Reformation, anti-Jew holocausts, etc all contains the flovour of the Christian hate and cannibalism. The observance of Holy Mass is an unmitigated persistence of the cannibalism of the Church. Now world is under threat of jihad. It is also the other side of the same coin – the Abrahamic religion.

Pope Pius XII justified Hitler’s invasion of Russia in the following words: “Gallant action in the defense of foundation of Christian culture”. Now his soul is proposed to elevate to the sainthood. The only miracle left in his account book was the restoration of papal country. This miracle was the outcome of his pro-Hitler-Mussolini policies.  From the very beginning of the Church, Jews are their targeted groups of proselytism. The Jerusalem Post of 12 May 2009, reports – “Vatican to stop missionizing Jews” [by Abe Selig]. “During his historic journey to Jerusalem last month, Pope Benedict XVI met the chief Sephardic and Ashkenazi rabbis at Heichal Shlomo and agreed that the Catholic Church would cease all missionary activity among Jews”. Now the Church is gearing up to fulfill “The Marvel of God’s Plan in Asia’. On 6th November 1999 Pope John Paul II explained the Marvel of the God in the following words; “Just as in the first millennium the Cross was planted on the soil of Europe, and in the second on that of the Americas and Africa, we can pray that in the Third Christian Millennium a great harvest of faith will be reaped in this vast and vital continent”23.
Through millenniums the process of the revitalization Hindu existence is assured by sages, saints, and incarnations24. This observable fact in the words of Swami Ranganathananda is: “India is ever ageing, but never old; it is because of this adjustment that takes place at particular periods”25. For that reason in the absence of a Pope or a Patriarch or a prophet or a Caliph it is still glittering as juvenile. Therefore it withstands and survived the threat of 700 years of Islamic humiliations and 250 years of disguised Christian proselytizing enterprises. On the other hand Communism flourished well in Persia [Iran], before the Islamic Revolution of Ayatollah Khomeini. Now there was no trace of it. What happened to it? Harsh measures against Communism by intolerant Islamic regime were the reason behind the extinction of communist ideology from Iran.

Generally in Muslim countries religion, social relations, and politics are under the tight observation and control of the religion of Islam. Not only in Iran but all over the Islamic world the condition of Communism, Christianity, and other non-Islamic faiths is miserable. Even Capitalism also showed flexibility to contain several of the equality concepts socialism. But in India Communism was failed to make a strong footing. It is not because of the anti-communist measures of the State or Hindu religious institutions. Hindu society never counts the ideology of Communism as a threat or a safety valve. The religion of the Hindus is sufficient to neutralize or contain the marvel of communism. The cases of Buddhism, Jainism, etc were not too differed from the communist experience. Thus in India Capitalism and Communism lost its ground. Don’t forget the fact that the belligerent Communism and Capitalism of the last century paused great threat to the world peace. Before the Hindu spiritual might of equal recognition to all creeds the aggressive proselytism endeavours of Christian missions of the pre-independence era were miserably failed. In front of the Hindu conviction of all creeds and gods are the means to the realization of the Ultimate Truth, the question of conversion to Christianity turned out to be immaterial.

I am proud of being a Hindu by Karma. Why you pseudo-secularist to corner and hunt the Hinduism and its custodians? Are you fears the innate irrefutable nature of this nation? An international conspiracy is going on to disturb or destabilize this nation economically, spiritually and politically. It is one of the surviving juvenile pagans in the world. The very foundation of Indian culture and civilization is its religion, the Hindu. It successfully responded the challenges of various cults and civilizations for the last two millenniums. Hence it is possible in this and future millenniums. It has an inbuilt mechanism to face such intimidation. Therefore the efforts of Christianity, Islam and colonialism to metamorphose Hindu failed miserably. The history teaches that the destiny of the crypto-Christian designs to malign the Hindu religion through the academic studies will not bear any desired fruits. Thus I humbly advise that “Do not judge others, so that God will not judge you.  ………… Why, then, do you look at the speck in your brother’s eye, and pay no attention to the long in your own eye?”26. 

End notes
1.  Krishnan Ramaswamy and others, Invading the Sacred, New Delhi, 2nd impression, 2007, p 3
2. Ibid, p 3
3. Ibid, p 5
4. Rig Veda, Ch: III, Sukta 164, Mandala I, Varg 22
5. P. Parameswaran, Hindutva Ideology – unique and universal, Chennai, 2000, p 5]6. Ibid, p 7
7. Krishnan Ramaswamy and others, op cit, ‘the secular’, in European languages, has only one contrast – ‘the sacred’, p 131
8. K. M. Panikkar, Hinduism, p 367
9. S. Gurumurthy, The World Beyond Marx and Market, Chennai, 2007, pp 62 ff
10. Krishnan Ramaswamy and others, op cit, p 138
11. Christiane Hartnack, Psychoanalysis in Colonial India, p 76, Quoted from Krishnan Ramaswamy and others, op cit,  p 138
12. Krishnan Ramaswamy and others, op cit, pp 18, 19
13. P. Parameswaran, quotes Swami Ranganathanada, op cit, back cover
14. Krishnan Ramaswamy and others, op cit, pp 43, 44
15. Helen Ellerbe, The Dark Side of Christian History, Morningstar and Lark, Orlando, 1995, p 1
16. Genesis, Ch: III, Verse 19
17. Krishnan Ramaswamy and others, op cit, p 141
18. “ …….. it was the woman who was deceived and broke God’s law.  ……… a woman will be saved through having children. ….”, Paul’s first letter to Timothy, Ch. II, Verses 14 &15
19. The First Epistle of Paul the Apostle to the Corinthians, Ch. XIV, Verse 34
20. The New Indian Express, Kochi, 26th March 2010, quotes New York Times
21. St. John, Ch. VIII, Verse 7
22. St. Mathew, Ch. X, Verses 34 &35
23. Kanayalal M. Talreja, Holy Vedas and Holy Bible, New Delhi, 2000, p 19
24. Bhagavat Gita, Ch: IV, Verse 8
25. Swami Ranganathanada, quoted from P. Parameswaran, Hindutva Ideology – unique and universal, Chennai, 2000, p back cover
26. St. Mathew, Ch.VII, Verses. 1, 2, 3

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