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Hindu Extremism isn't Hinduism
Nov 30, 2005 12:12 AM 2704 Views
(Updated Nov 30, 2005 12:21 AM)

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RSS (Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh) considers itself the watchdog of Hinduism in India. But what they are supporting and aiming for isn’t Hinduism, it’s actually Hindu Extremism. Hinduism is not about Khaki shorts & Saffron flags and it’s definitely not about rebelling against the minorities.


Before discussing the highly irrational approach of RSS, I’d recommend them (especially their chief) to read the book called Complete Idiot's Guide to Hinduism by Linda Johnsen. The book has explained practices & beliefs of Hinduism in an organized way and also includes tales from history & literature.


It is ironical that the book is written by a foreigner and not by a Hindu, but at the same time it is a good thing, since we get to see a neutral approach on Hinduism with all its strengths & weaknesses, where as a Hindu would have found it difficult to remain unbiased on this topic.


Now, what has tempted me to write this review? It is the latest statement of RSS chief Mr. K S Sudarshan. The old man is growing as far as age is concerned but I wonder when really will he grow up? These are his latest two statements –


(1). All Hindus most re-produce at least 3 children, the more the merrier.


(2). Muslims, the poorest and the most uneducated community, is a threat to the nation.


Why he says that? Because he feels Muslims are growing at a very fast rate compared to the Hindus (a latest re-search states that the growth rate of both Hindus and Muslims has declined in the last decade), and thus, he feels Hindus are in a danger of being outnumbered by the Muslims.


To be honest I haven’t heard something more naïve than this ever before. Rather than trying to make sure that more Muslims (13% of the population) implement Family planning, he wants Hindus (80% of the population) to produce more & more kids, as if women are nothing more than a reproduction machine. I totally agree with activist Malini Bhattacharya, who feels women and women alone have the right on their bodies & health.


Plus, think of it from the economic point of view. How bad is it for the nation? We are already suffering from the ill-effects of over-population and this weird old guy advises us to produce more kids. Keeping community ahead of the nation, is not what Hinduism is all about, that’s 100% Hindu Extremism. Quality is more important that quantity. We should try and progress in the fields of science, technology and other productive areas, rather than the re-productive one.


And what’s with calling Muslims a threat to the nation? When will RSS understand that issues connected to the democratization of Pakistan, ethical resolutions to Kashmir, or gender reforms within Islam are separate from India's commitment to upholding the rights of minorities or to reforms within Hinduism? Maybe never …and that’s why I have not been a very keen believer of the policies of Sangh Parivar and Hindu Fundamentalists.


I recommend the common Hindu to read this book and understand the soul of Hinduism, not just to cherish its benefits but also to be wary of the “so-called watchdogs” of Hinduism, who spread hatred & insecurity among their own countrymen just for their selfish purposes. This book is for all. Those who don’t know anything about Hinduism will get an excellent introduction and overview of it. And for the Hindus it will be a deeper insight into the religion.


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