Sunday 21st April 2024,
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Rearming Hinduism on the road to Coimbatore

Rearming Hinduism on the road to Coimbatore

Image result for delhi airportDay three on our twenty day tour to modern day India turned out to be a three hour drag at Delhi Airport while waiting for a connecting flight. As my son gorged on some western imperialistic junk food from its outpost in the airport lounge, the symbol of ‘Developed’ India most citizen’s brag about as some major achievement.

I was content to wait for some local flavour courtesy from the local street vendors at our destination, the ‘Manchester’ of the South – Coimbatore.

It is unfortunate I recalled past experiences from a previous trip, when using modern technology in India didn’t leave any positive impressions either. I was pretty sure, I was about witness another experience, while my phone sucked up the juice from the charging dock I sat back and relaxed in my seat reading a interesting book to take my mind off things when suddenly hear a female voice question, “What are a you reading?”

The Conversation Starts

Me-  “Rearming Hinduism it’s a book by a professor of media studies in California, about Hinduism “

This ‘Aryan Race’ blond woman seemed to get more be intrigued as I showed her the cover of the book.

She – “ah! Yes hinduphobia, yes I have experienced it a lot.”
Me–  “well a lot of so called Hindu’s are part of the problem, this without being conscious of it.

She- “I guess they can’t be held responsible, the government representative I am supposed to meet in Hyderabad. Can’t bring myself to drink the water, but is ok to survive on food from a western coffee chain. Whose products are made using the same water?, They ‘re programmed to think that way,”

Me “even my son can give the impression sometimes but then hes born in the west . He was very emotional when England lost in the Football World cup.”

To which she laughed.

“However, he has an understanding of Hindu Dharma and it’s vastness and its ability to provide solutions. Something to be revered and not just dismissed or ignored as inferior. But you see here in India he would be considered as Hindu extremist, his school back in UK teaches him yoga, meditation and Sanskrit, he may not yet understand the full significance of these, yet , but at least it’s not looked down upon.”As my son embraces me, The perception in the minds of most colonised Indians is that Hinduism is extremely oppressive and even worse than the oppressive white supremacist theories imposed upon us savages via European imperialism and even Hitler himself. “

She “ Do you think with Modi, this will change?”

Me– “Well he is one man in a democracy; people need it to change from the ground up. Then only will it come close to it, “ The US is a fine example, the electorate is deserving of its leader, the war machine rolls on.”

She- “The less said about the US the better. Anyway I am here for the Blockchain conference in Hyderabad, but I missed my flight transfer”
Me- “How unfortunate. In the UK my son can’t see or feel the magnitude of this culture, so I am taking him to a few ashram and temples to give him a glimpse of it”
She- “It maybe a bit strict, but take him to Pondicherry to Auroville ashram.”
Me- “I had planned on going there now that you mention it, I would love to but I’m going to Sadhguru’s Asharm in Coimbatore”

Image result for AurovilleShe- “I went to Auroville in 1998 for the first time and went back to Slovakia and forgot it all, until I started a new job where a few of my colleagues were meditating together before they started work. You should meditate too,”

Me- “I guess, I am too lazy, “I do get reminded like this, other people telling neither would be an important step forward for me. I am sure I will have to very soon.”

“The issue with Hindus political representative’s is clear to see, with their self imposed colonisation which is proving to be worse than the ones who tried to colonise them. They may have made it easier.”

However, they lack clearly – at best – a Dharmic approach, this civilisation was the envy of the world not only for trade, arts and lifestyle because of its spiritual pursuits. If they had a clear understanding of their own history, they’re method would become vastly more beneficial and empowering”

To give an example everyone around the world knows that cow is upheld as the most sacred to Hindus but what they dont know is that India is also now number one world beef exporter in the name of progress.

She looked stunned,

She- “it cant be i don’t believe it, I thought that with Mr Modi things were likely to change?” especially for promoting World Yoga Day, I assumed he was the ideal head of state.”

Me –“In the UK they are encouraging toddler’s to take up yoga on national television and yet here even the suggestion of that is is seen as mumbo jumbo,All you can do is laugh at this idiotic situation. Even though our contribution maybe too many to list we are still nowhere even in the country that gave birth to this ancient culture and its practices, which are impacting across the world. Unfortunately, they’re totally unaware of it.

This is true of Indian’s across the board, they’re fixated by things British and the West. There are a lot of things to be learned from them, which is true. But this requires balance or even a sense of realization and exploitation in all its facets.”

She- “Well it is hard to escape the influence of the British and their language, anywhere I travel to as a translator for my clients”

“ Even my son, who is only 10, is found questioning the obsession with mentality of all things British. In fact, he said even though they were made into slaves by them they still look up to them.His timing may have been a bit off, for he expressed this in front of an Indian friend who loves Shakespeare.”
She-“He came up with that on his own?”
Me- “I am not sure, where he got all of this from. But he’s not far off from the truth.”

With all of that, Most Hindu’s by en-large are unable to present their spiritual worldview or let alone defend it in any significant way thanks to the colonial education system still in place in India by the Indian elite .At the sametime we find the global population starting to lean towards a Dharmic outlook where it needs guidance from Hindus .So its encouraging to see some Hindus like Professor Vamsee Juluri exposing the hinduphobic narratives while giving the Hindu world view like his book Rearming Hinduism.

Suddenly there was a  call out for her flight number so she quickly took a picture of the book and said shes going to order it.At this point we parted.

The book itself is a refreshing take on the depths of Hinduphobia around us and perception that exists around the indigenous dharmic society, today. It’s wider impacts on especially popular culture in the world over and it’s contrasting perceptions. The author is a professor of media studies at the University of San Francisco.

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By Anish

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