Divisiveness In The Name Of Defending Dharma


4th February, 2010

For every Hindu, Kurukshetra is here and now 

Hindu nationalists must keep their eyes pinned on the issue of religious conversion. In the end, for Hindus, it is not just about world order but the content and character of the world. It is the Hindu understanding of what constitutes dharma that determines the fundamentals of Hindu traditions, which includes tradition of statecraft –

  • Realizing God is not the goal of Hindu dharma; it is to know the self, and the place of the self in Creation which includes in the main the non-human world; that knowledge can be called truth or god or it can remain nameless
  • Therefore there is no jealous, intolerant God who like the lion in the Panchatantra will not allow another God in the territory he has marked as his domain
  • Hindus believe every individual can traverse the path of his choice to attain this supreme knowledge
  • Therefore the very idea that someone or something is the sole repository of the ultimate truth is the very antithesis to dharma
  • Therefore the idea of one true god, one true religion, one true prophet has no place in Hindu dharma
  • Therefore Hindus felt no need to convert peoples of other faiths to their faith
  • Therefore conquering territory in the name of this one true god, one true religion and one true prophet was never and is not the Hindu way; religion was about knowing the self, not about conquering territory for some fantasy called kingdom of god be it the Christian or Muslim god
  • However Hindu kings and Hindu states whose primary responsibility is dharma paripaalana, to protect and uphold dharma, have always waged war against kings and states that violated dharma, subdued them and restored the nation back to dharma

Religious conversion is thus a violation of dharma and Hindus are obliged to destroy this Asura. One angry bhakta of Pujya Swami Dayananda Saraswati sent the following excerpt of his talk delivered in Montreal, little realizing that he was only proving the writer’s point that Hindus lack political sense and have no conception of the threat posed to us by politics of religion. It is important to understand this talk to understand why the writer believes the HDAS is being derailed from its path and is being made a piece on the global chess board where the core objective of the battle is to keep only the monotheist god on the board. 

The Human Rights UN charter has the article number 18, which talks about the right to change one’s religion. If one wants to change one’s religion, one must not be denied that freedom. One can change one’s religion in private, and in community, and one should be able to profess one’s religion. It is a good thing that we have in the Charter of this global body, a clause protecting religious freedom, but then this freedom, like any freedom, has certain responsibility. 

Therefore, I have the right to be a Christian, a Muslim, a Parsi, or a Hindu. As it is, it is my responsibility to see that I do not destroy the Christian culture and religion; I cannot retain the culture and tradition unless I retain the Christian. You cannot protect Islam, without protecting a Muslim. To protect is to allow the person to have his or her form of prayer, tradition, and culture. You cannot protect dharma, without protecting the dharmi. A live culture or religion is protected by protecting the one who lives it. A practitioner of Islam or Christianity has a right to practice and preach his or her religion. Whatever your rights, I will defend them at any forum, but this cannot give you a sanction to have a program of aggression and destruction”. 

This really is the crux of the problem. The fundamental responsibility of any Acharya or Guru is to protect Hindu dharma and the dharmi. Protecting dharma also entails destroying the Asura who is not only violating dharma but is threatening to destroy it; the Asura must therefore be destroyed or permanently subdued. Acharyas and Gurus, and by extension the Acharya Sabha are not required to be politically correct, are not required to genuflect to the United Nations or any global or international body; and are not mandated to sing dulcet tunes for acceptability in international forums. 

Pujya Swamiji knows that Dharma and Dharmi cannot be protected if he declares that it is his responsibility to see that he does not destroy the Christian culture and religion. Pujya Swamiji knows that if Christianity and Islam live in this world, then other religions and other peoples have to die. Extermination of other faiths and nations is the end objective of both Islam and the Church. If Pujya Swamiji commits himself to protecting Christians and Muslims, he has to protect them on Hindu bhumi too; this is protecting the Asura, not destroying himDharma paripaalana and protecting the Asura are self-contradictory objectives and therefore untenable in reason and logic. 

Our Acharyas and Gurus are mandated only to speak the truth when and if they have to speak at all; and the truth is Islam and the Church are Asuric religions because they are the very antithesis to dharma. These religions, which pose a threat to the survival of Hindus and Hindu dharma on Hindu bhumi, have to be either destroyed or effectively subdued. If Pujya Swamiji really believes in all that he spoke in Montreal, Hindu nationalists have real cause for concern about the effectiveness of the HDAS to protect dharma and dharmi in this country. 

“Whatever your rights, I will defend them in any forum” cannot be an article of faith for one whose primary responsibility is to protect dharma on dharma bhumi. Pujya Swamiji would have electrified his audience and sent shock-waves around the world, if, as Convener Hindu Dharma Acharya Sabha he had declared that Islam and Christianity can exist with dignity on Hindu bhumi only and only if the Church agrees to stop converting non-Hindus in India and if Islam agrees to live in Hindu-majority India as Hindus live in Muslim-majority countries. Pujya Swamiji would have given voice to all Hindus had he stated that the HDAS would now pressure the Indian government to put in place a national law to ban religious conversion to the Abrahamic faiths and disallow foreign remittances to Muslim and Christian religious organizations and NGOs. 

Now let us contrast Pujya Swamiji’s Montreal statement to the bombshell that Pujya Kanchi Acharya dropped at the inter-faith dialogue in Mumbai in June 2009. Taking the Lariano inter-faith resolution, “In the area of humanitarian service in times of need, what we can do together, we should not do separately” with total seriousness, Pujya Kanchi Acharya told the shell-shocked Vatican representative that all monies coming into the country from foreign Churches and western countries should be placed in a common pool in this country. The monies thus collected ought to be used in the service of all peoples without distinction of religions. The ball is now in the Vatican court. What we can do together we should not do separately must begin with the foreign funds that Churches abroad send to the Churches at home.http://www.vigilonline.com 

The writer has it from the highest authority that the resolutions passed on the 11th January at Hyderabad had already been drafted by the 7th January and a draft copy of the resolutions was given to at least one Acharya for his perusal. This means the resolutions had been drafted before the issues were discussed by the Acharyas and Gurus in the HDAS. 

The resolutions mention the UN special convention on human rights titled “Faith in Human Rights” in The Hague, Netherlands in December 2008. The press-note released on the proceedings of the HDAS and the HDAS resolution referring to the UN convention read as follows – 

Elaborating further he said that, as the Convener of Acharya Sabha, he was invited to the UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights on 10th December 2008 at The Hague, Netherlands. There, at the Conference he was able to have a declaration passed that it would be a serous Human Rights violation if one interferes with the individual’s “freedom to have, to retain and to adopt a religion or belief of one’s personal choice without coercion or inducement”. The Acharya Sabha considers this “2008 Faith in Human Rights Statement” signed by all religious leaders as a major success for the Hindu Community at large, which has been at the receiving end of conversions for decades now“. 

The Acharya Sabha meet in Hyderabad will therefore address the way forward on the issues that are on top of every Hindu’s mind. 

1. How to attain the Right to Religion which is consistent with the “UN 2008 Faith in Human Rights Resolution.” Clearly conversion based on derogatory statements about Hinduism or coercion or inducement will have to be stopped by strong amendment in our laws. (Press-note 1) 

1c) Participation in an UN Conference in December 2008 at The Hague where the UN Declaration on Human Rights was re-visited, on behalf of the Acharya Sabha. Some important changes were made in the final document to describe “Religious Freedom”; this was to reflect the concerns of the Acharya Sabha and Hindu Society on the “right to religious conversion” by Abrahamic religions. (HDAS Resolutions, 11th January, 2010) 

The Hague convention in December 2008 finds mention in the HDAS resolutions because at this convention, Pujya Swamiji who participated on behalf of the HDAS and all Hindus, succeeded in getting the gathering to re-visit the UN Declaration on Human Rights. The press-note cited earlier also declares that the resolutions of “Faith in Human Rights” signed by all religious leaders gathered there “as a major success for the Hindu community large”. This is a significant claim and deserves great attention. 

Before we examine The Hague convention, we must consider the serious charge that Pujya Swamiji is making against religious leaders of the Abrahamic faiths at other inter-faith and multi-faith dialogues and conferences. Pujya Swamiji had this to say in Montreal – 

In all conferences I have attended, I am asked to help with the committee that drafts resolutions. I always have asked for the term “mutual respect among all religions” to be included as one of the resolutions, but always this mutual respect clause is struck down, and is replaced by “freedom of religion.” The freedom of religion is understood by some as the freedom to preach and convert with an evangelistic program. They feel they are mandated to convert, and they think they are saving souls“. 

The Convener of the Acharya Sabha admits that “freedom of religion” is interpreted by the Church as the fundamental right to convert non-Christians. The idea that an individual can change religions is an Abrahamic religious concept. As mentioned earlier, non-Christian, non-Islamic and pre-Christian, pre-Islamic religions do not subscribe to the idea that a person can change his religion. In Hindu understanding, just as one cannot change one’s mother, one can also not change one’s language, religion and nationality which an individual inherits as his timeless legacy at birth. 

Islam and Christianity have occupied by violence the territories that belonged to other religions; these two Abrahamic religions can therefore not claim any country as their homeland. They are invaders, usurpers and settlers wherever they are located today. These two religions came into being only through religious conversion. And what these predatory religions have usurped with force and violence, they are not going to give up without a bloody war. It is time Hindus realize and accept this fact. 

Thus clause number 18 in the United Nations Declaration of Human Rights, drafted in 1948 gives a bizarre proposition the high status of fundamental human rights, but which is totally compatible with the nature of the Abrahamic religions. 

Article 15 

(1) Everyone has the right to a nationality. 

(2) No one shall be arbitrarily deprived of his nationality nor denied the right to change his nationality. 

Article 18 

Everyone has the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion; this right includes freedom to change his religion or belief 

Nation is different from country; nationality is different from citizenship; and nationalism is different from patriotism. These distinctions are rooted in the fundamental distinction of ‘us’ and ‘them’; who belongs and who does not belong. The Vatican knows this and so do the White Christian countries; but it serves the political objectives of their religion to make them interchangeable concepts and if the concepts defy interchange, then outlaw the distinction as the pope did in 1995 at the UNGA. 

We need to clarify the essential difference between an unhealthy form of nationalism, which teaches contempt for other nations or cultures, and patriotism, which is a proper love of one’s country. True patriotism never seeks to advance the well-being of one’s own nation at the expense of others. For in the end, this would harm one’s own nation as well“. 

It is unnecessary to dissect this obviously untenable papal assertion. Sonia Gandhi may be an Indian citizen but she is an Italian national. If it is possible for an individual to change his nationality, then what is African-American, Latin-American, Indian-American, Native-American, even when they are all American citizens? 

Hindus must confront the Abrahamic world and assert that we do not subscribe to religious conversion and so the only change that will be permitted on Hindu bhumi is for the converts to return to the religions native to this bhumi. This forceful assertion, in one stroke will render the preposterous idea of “freedom of religion” and all its attendant baggage, meaningless in this Hindu nation. As stated earlier, Hindu Dharmacharyas do not need to make politically correct or internationally acceptable statements. 

Going back to the convention on “Faith in Human Rights” in The Hague, in December 2008, it has been claimed that Pujya Swamiji made a significant intervention to the UN Charter of Human Rights favourable to Hindus. But is this claim true? 

First, the writer is open to correction but the UN webpage on Human Rights does not mention this convention at all. The text of the resolutions signed by the group of multi-religious leaders is also not displayed prominently, if it is displayed at all. If The Hague convention made a significant amendment to the “freedom of religion and conscience” clause in the charter of human rights, the clause which is cited by the Church as legal mandate to convert non-Christians, then the amendment does not show in the original charter, either in the body of the main charter or as a separate amendment text. 

The text of the resolutions of “Faith in Human Rights” is however uploaded on the HDAS website and reproduced on the Vigil website. http://www.vigilonline.com 

The Hyderabad HDAS resolutions state that the 1948 Charter of Human Rights was “revisited” and that some important changes were made to the final draft of the resolutions passed at The Hague. So, changes were made only to the final draft of the resolutions at The Hague convention, not the original charter, which remains as it was. This should not surprise us because as Pujya Swamiji himself said in Montreal the Abrahamic religions will not permit any change in the “freedom of religion” clause which is their international legal license to destroy other religions and eventually annihilate all non-Christian nations. 

The said clause in The Hague statement reads as follows – 

8. We note with serious concern the increase of intolerance in matters relating to religion or belief, of cases of incitement to religious hatred, overt or covert. While emphasising the importance of the freedom of expression, we deplore portrayals of objects of religious veneration which fail to be properly respectful of the sensibilities of believers. We consider the freedom to have, to retain and to adopt a religion or belief of one’s personal choice, without coercion or inducement, to be an undeniable right. Furthermore, the freedom to manifest one’s religion or belief in any form of worship, observance, practice and teaching may only be subject to carefully defined limitations consistent with generally accepted principles of international law. 

This is not going to deter Islam or the Church even an iota from their ultimate goal to Islamise and Christianise the world. The words ‘without coercion and inducement’ are totally meaningless and self-defeating. The person or persons who drafted the HDAS resolutions for 2010 must tell us why the Pope or any other Christian cannot repeat the same clause, word for word and interpret it in their favour; only they will now say that re-conversion of Christians and Muslims to Hinduism and other religions native to this soil, as per Resolution 8 of The Hague “Faith in Human Rights” convention is violation of the UN charter. 

It is inconceivable that a Hindu religious leader would be allowed to shake even a single brick of this international edifice. Consider the list of participants which itself is revealing – three Muslim clerics, two of them from Iraq, representing three Islamic denominations we may presume, three Rabbis representing the Jewish people, two Buddhists including the Dalai Lama, one Hindu Guru, one Tao religious leader, one Native American Elder and seven members of the Christian religious Hierarchy! If any Hindu had any doubts about the religious affiliation and bias of the United Nations, these doubts must now be laid to rest. 

One participant who caught the writer’s eye was His Excellency Mgr. Dr. Gerard J.N de Korte, Bishop of Groningen, The Netherlands, responsible for Commission Justicia et Pax, The Netherlands. The writer wonders if Pujya Swamiji knew of the shenanigans of Justicia et Pax in India and if he did, what did Pujya Swamiji and the good reverend talk about over tea. The Vigil book on NGOs made a pointed reference to Justicia et Pax for not only meddling in the internal affairs of Hindu society but also internationalising them with the sole objective of defaming Hindus and Hinduism. 

Church-backed and Church-funded NGOs focus exclusively on dalit localities and women’s issues. The dalit issue has been internationalised precisely because of the involvement of local and foreign churches in so-called ‘dalit welfare’. ‘Dalit’ is a 20th century Christian missionary construct with explicit political overtones and objectives. 

As pointed out earlier, this project receives funds from the churches in the Netherlands. Cordaid, ICCO and Indian Committee of the Netherlands are Dutch Christian NGOs which actively campaign against the Hindus in the guise of dalit human rights with the European Parliament. 

Justitia et Pax is the world-wide organisation for ‘justice and peace’ of the Catholic Church. It aims to inspire and mobilise Catholics to commit themselves to human rights, and advises and supports bishops and church organisations in the area of justice and peace. 

Justitia et Pax works to improve the miserable living conditions of the dalits (untouchables) in India. Together with the Landelijke India Werkgroep, CMC and ICCO, Justitia et Pax has founded the Dalit Network Netherlands (DNN). In October the campaign ‘Stop Caste Discrimination – Support the Dalits’ was launched. In its lobbying work the DNN mainly focused on the Dutch EU Presidency.http://www.vigilonline.com 

There is nothing, absolutely nothing for Hindus in these inter-faith and multi-faith dialogues and conferences. Sitting around the table with powerful Asuras may give Hindus a sense of importance and lull Hindus into a false sense of comfort that our enemies can be won over to our way of thought and worldview. This is Gandhian folly. 

The resolutions of HDAS 2010 point to the direction in which this body is headed. The resolutions can be summarized briefly under these broad categories –

  • Listing all international inter-faith conferences attended by Pujya Swami Dayananda Saraswati as Convener HDAS
  • All Hindu issues which have merited the personal attention of Dr. Subramaniam Swamy and future measures which will give him an even greater role in the affairs of the HDAS
  • Mention of spasmodic and innocuous activities like compiling and publishing the first edition of the Acharya Sabha directory, publishing a news letter, protesting Hydro-dams on Upper Ganga and Bhagirathi and the like
  • Reference to the resources available at Sastra University to set up a center for Hindu Heritage (Sastra university is one of the Chennai clique’s expanding circles)
  • Intention to create an international body like the United Nations to deal with religious and cultural affairs of the world

The last claim is mind-boggling for its pretentiousness. If seven Christians can be arraigned against one Hindu at The Hague to make sure that the Hindu does not so much as add a full-stop or delete a comma to the prepared text, does the Acharya Sabha really think the powerful and well-organized Abrahamic religions and their state power will allow Hindus to create an international body which would diminish their power and influence over world affairs? 

Let us remember that Malaysia’s pioneering efforts to create an Asian Monetary Fund in the lines of the International Monetary Fund for Asia which bore the brunt of the IMF’s role as lender of last resort in the wake of the South and South-East Asian countries, is yet to gather momentum. 

The resolutions leave us numb with disappointment and despair. Bringing over 150 Acharyas, Mathathipathis, Mahamandaleswars, Akharas and Adeenams under one roof once every two years is a momentous event calling for stupendous effort. The HDAS has convened four times since its creation but what does it have to show for itself? 

This reminds us of the mammoth prayer meetings that Gandhi convened every day unfailingly for several years, across the country; in villages, towns and cities. Tens and thousands of people, sometimes hundreds of thousands of people gathered everyday to see him, to feel his presence, to hear him talk. They all assembled to see and listen to Gandhi because they thought he was leading the nation to freedom. 

In the end Gandhi led the nation only to vivisection because he did not put these mammoth gatherings to any purposeful use. He did not use the prayer meetings to mobilize Hindu society to deal with an ascendant Muslim League; he did not involve the people directly in the freedom movement; he did not give the people a sense of Hinduness; he did not show them the true face of their enemies. He told them to spin the charkha while he did the politics; he led them in inter-faith prayer songs; they all sang “Ishwar Allah tero naam” and went back home satisfied that they had seen the man who would lead them to freedom. 

As Aurobindo remarked, “Our beginnings are mighty” and there it stops. There is no purposeful movement thereafter towards a defined goal. The HDAS is in very real danger of becoming yet another mighty beginning losing steam and becoming a shell of its original self – a talking shop with no intention of dealing effectively with the two most menacing threats to Hindus – religious conversion and foreign funds. 

To think our revered acharyas are brought together to pass resolutions on international conferences, to eulogise Dr. Subramaniam Swamy and to talk of shoes and ships and sealing wax and of cabbages and kings. There is also the real possibility of a new clique forming around a new cult figure. The HDAS and the Hindu Service and Spiritual Fair are great and timely moves to organize Hindu society. If this great coming together must be put to effective use, the first thing to be done is to jettison individuals and groups seeking to derail the HDAS and attempting to link the HDAS with the GFCH. 

Hindu society is faced by a real threat to its survival. For every Hindu, the time for sweet talk is over. Kurukshetra is here and now. The Asuras must be destroyed or subdued. The HDAS cannot be allowed to go the way of the Indian National Congress. It has to measure up to the threat or find itself becoming irrelevant. Pujya Kanchi Acharya who as late as the evening of 8th January was discussing the issues that he intended to raise at the HDAS, for some reason best known to himself decided against going to the Sabha on the 9th. The Convener HDAS would do well to sense the warning signals. (Concluded)

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