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Tuesday, March 29, 2005

 

Religion & Ignorance

Within India itself, we witness a great deal of ignorance about the Hindu religion and its scriptures. Although Hindus form 80 per cent population of India, there is still only one university which teaches Hinduism, whereas there are five which teach Islam, five which teach Christianity, two which teach Sikhism and one that teaches Jainism.

You would find every Muslim would know a couple of verses from the Quran; but you can hardly find a Christian who has not read the Bible. But Hindus who know Sanskrit or a few shlokas are rare. Most educated Hindus of our generation might have managed to read more from Bible or something compared to some scripture of their religion. Don’t you find it strange?!

You don’t have to run away to forest and become an ascetic to understand your own religion. But read a few scripture regularly and they shall remind you of your duties and responsibilities and make this world a better place to live.

Christians & Muslims have always been so aggressive in spreading their religion and associations like YMCA have gained wide acceptance. But for some reason the Hindu associations are viewed with skepticism. One reason I can think of is that the media seems to have given the prerogative of Hindu identity to the RSS and VHP and secular-minded Hindus would not like to associate with these two organizations. As a result many Hindu’s shy away from their own identity. But believe me if you read Vedanta or Gita or Jain Agams or any other scripture for that matter, you shall be proud to be a part of a great heritage & culture.

I don’t understand why we are so willfully ignorant about our own religion. I believe that India cannot make a distinct mark on the world if it ignores its religious and spiritual heritage.

If these methods sound harsh, I am only being cruel to be kind. I think it is important for us to understand and recognize the significance of our culture.

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