Western Identity — Ours and Theirs…Part I

My Comments on above are: Again, an example of confident use of the “Indian mind” being “implanted” with a foreign habit. Of course the Macaulayite substitution of Western education methods for existing Indian education methods is a major tool of Westernization still in use by the Indian intelligentsia. In getting Western political education, Tte colonized merely recognized the need to talk back in the Colonizer’s language.

Also the conflation of India as “hindu India” which is still prevalent today, tells how well India’s “secular republic” is understood by outsiders. Theocratic Pakistan (& Bangladesh) are considered the same class as India’s “minority” worshipping establishment.

It is perhaps particularly noteworthy that the present Hindu rulers of the greater part of the Indian sub-continent should have chosen, as they have, to carry on the Government on Western lines originally laid down by alien conquerors. In the territories included in the Indian Union, the Hindus are now masters in their own house for the first time since the beginning of the Muslim conquest of India eight or nine hundred years ago. In the eighteenth century, when the Mughal Muslim raj was breaking up, there were moments when it looked as if it was going to be followed immediately by the establishment of Hindu successor states. In the 18th century scramble for the Mughal' heritage, a Maratha Hindu Power seemed for a time to be well on the way to winning the lion's share of the spoils. This 18th century attempt to transform the Mughal raj into a Maratha Hindu Raj was foiled by the intervention of a more powerful Western hand.

Quick & easy summary, same problems of easy categorization.

But the establishment of a British Raj instead of a Maratha Raj did not bring to a halt the resurgence of the Hindus in their own homeland. When the military lines taken by the Hindu renaissance in the 18th century ended in military failure, the gathering stream of Hindu energy was merely diverted into a different channel. Under the British Raj in the 19th and 20th centuries, as during the interregnum in the 18th century, the Hindus continued steadily to gain power in India, but under the British regime they gained it, not by force of arms, but by force of mastering a Western system of education, administration and law which were so many keys to power in a Westernizing world.

A pat given on “Hindu” backs for being law abiding even as their civilization was being dismantled & “Re-Engineered”. Fairly accurate description, though.

The Hindus were quicker than the Indian Muslims to see and seize the opportunity that, in a Western age of Indian history, was open to Indians who effectively cultivated the Western arts of peace. Unlike the Indian Muslims, the Hindus had no enervating memories of recently lost power and glory to keep them brooding ineffectively over a dead past instead of reaching out into the future; and so a balance of power which had begun to incline against the Muslims in an anarchic 18th century continued to go against them in the 19th and 20th centuries under a British peace which set a premium on intellectual ability, in place of military prowess, as the qualification for advancement in the continuing competition between Hindus and Indian Muslims who were now alike subjects of a Western crown. The Indian muslims did, of course, follow their fellow hindu Indians' example. They too set themselves to master the arts of our Western civilization. Yet, when the voluntary liquidation of the British Raj in India came within sight, the Indian Muslims insisted that the retransfer of Govt. of India from British to Indian hands must be accompanied by a partition of Indian between a Hindu and a Muslim successor state; and this insistence on separation was, in effect, a recognition of the truth that, since the day of 'the Great Moghuls', there had been a reversal of the balance of power between the Muslims and Hindus in India to the Muslims' disadvantage. In a joint Hindu-Muslim state including the whole sub-continent, the Indian Muslims feared that they would now be swamped by a Hindu majority of the population.

Here he makes a bland presumption of “hindu muslim competition” as if there were two clearly warring groups. “Divide et Empera” or Divide & Rule implicit in this thinking. The muslim masses were (if I get it right) held back by their Clergy based leadership until charismatic muslim aristocrats (who were many) like Sir Syed & friends convinced the islamic clergy to agree to have them jump into the English school system.

So it was Voluntary liquidation by the Brits. And Indians thought they’d “won” a Freedom Struggle! Oh the delusions of “Gandhian” grandeur….

Though in 1947 a predominantly Muslim Pakistan thus parted company with a Predominantly Hindu Indian Union, the objective of the British Indian Empire's two successor states has so far been the same. In this first chapter of their histories, the power in both states has been in the hands of the element in their population that has had a Western education and that has been inspired by this with Western ideals. If this element remains in power in India and Pakistan, as well as in Ceylon, we may look forward to seeing the statesmen of these Asian countries use their influence over their countrymen to persuade them to remain members of our "free world". No doubt these same Asian statesmen will continue to demand that, in a "free world" that is to be a common home of Western and Asian peoples, there shall be no unfair and invidious discrimination against the Asian members of the family, and we Western members are bound to give satisfaction to our Asian fellow members on this point if, in calling our world "free", we are sincere. Unless we Western members of "the free world" fail to live upto our professed liberal principles, we may hope to see the present Western-trained and Western-minded rulers of India, Pakistan, and Ceylon continue in partnership with us.

More posts by this author:

Please follow and like us:

Co Authors :

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.