OPINION

Christmas Beyond the Manger

November 26, 2007
Madhu Chandra

Christmas is celebrated around the globe, mostly with the portrait of mere babe Jesus lying in a manger of Bethlehem’s cold night. Homes decorated, cake baked, new costumes dressed, bells rang, cars parked, whispering the melodious wishes of “Joy to the World, the Lord has Come” by breaking the “Silent Night, Holy Night” – that too for many is the occasion once in a year.

Celebration of Jesus’ birthday has been focused around the manger for centuries, while the world has changed to one end to another. Look beyond the manger is the intimation to all Christ loving followers.

Far and near, beyond the manger, unheard, unreported and hidden stories exist around the world. Beyond the manger, Indian churches will need to look at the unreported, unheard and hidden stories.

One of its unreported, unheard and hidden stories beyond the manger is the caste apartheid that existed in India for last three thousand years under the Brahmanical control. While celebrating Christmas year after years around the manger, India churches have failed to take note of caste and its apartheid, which also migrated within the Indian churches.

India Christians have stayed long enough around the manger and failed to notice the world’s worst apartheid to humanity under caste system. And seemingly, the global church and the world were kept hidden from this reality.

When Christians think about Christ given commission, we often tend to dwell around the manger of preaching the message of Jesus half and the medical and educational services were provided optional role to get involved in society.

India Churches have failed to see the reality of hidden stories of caste, apartheid and exploitation in the world’s largest democracy country. Definitely, to make full sense of Jesus’ birthday celebration, will required His church to fully understand His mission noted in the gospel of St. Luke 4:18-19.

“The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me, because He has anointed Me to preach the gospel to the poor; He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives and recovery of sight to the blind, to sent the liberty those who are oppressed; to proclaim the acceptable year of the LORD.”

The need of the hour to look beyond the manger is to see the two faces of India’s poor and rich. India’s Economic boom has benefited to “Indian haves.” Space between Indian haves and Indian have-nots spreads in wild fire like situation. India’s dreaming to become world super power will only produce super global rich Indians while 250 million live in less than a dollar a day earning.

The need of the hour to look beyond the manger is that social, educational, economic and spiritual captivity - the captivity beyond the sin and sinful nature. There are hidden modern forms of slavery in Indian society, who needs to be liberateed oppressed, not only from sin but also deliverance from India’s hidden slavery of caste, apartheid and discrimination.

The need of the hour to look beyond the manger is the raise of fascism in India, which has attacked Indian secularism. Saffron brigades with western money power have attacked Indian secularism. All the Indian Christians need to look beyond the manger to guard the God given secular state, provided by Indian Constitutions.

In the words of Dr. Sam Paul – Public Affair Secretary of All India Christian Council (www.aiccindia.org), “Christian community gave Quality Education, Quality Health Care and Quality Preaching to make Indians better citizens by following God given values. In return, Christians received physical, legal and Media violence.”

The Fascist forces have termed Christians, Islam and globalization as greatest enemies of country by singling out the Islam as terrorist, Christians as proselytizers, globalization as destroyers of Indian culture and tradition.

The Saffron fascists have been propagated Christians as proselytizers for the service of providing quality education, quality medical health care and quality teaching.

The need of the hour to look beyond the manger is the India’s 10 million manual scavengers whose birth rights have been assigned by the Brahmanical oppressors to clean human night shits, which Dr. Joseph D’souza – International President of Dalit Freedom Network (www.dalitnetwork.org) called it modern form of slavery.

“The cruel caste system has been a huge, never-ending problem for us as Indians. Our inability to eradicate caste completely even after the rise of prophets like Mahatma Phule and Dr. B.R. Ambedkar reveals our own blindness to one of the most dehumanizing systems the world has ever known,” says Dr. D’souza.

Rev. Vidhya Sagar Dogar’s work on “Rural Christians of North West India” reveals that 11% of Dalit Christians in Punjab still carries the human shits on their head every morning.

The need of the hour to look beyond the manger is the 57 years old constitutional discrimination to Dalits who chose their faith different from Hinduism. Dalits choosing Sikhism and Buddhism were punished for six years and later for forty years until Article 341 Para 3 was amended in 1956 and 1990.

The Dalits are still constitutionally punished for choosing Christianity and Islam by ceasing their names from SC status. The constitutional beneficiaries and the coverage of Prevention of SC/ST Atrocity Acts 1995 are denied till today to those Dalits who chose Christianity and Islam according to the freedom of choice and conscience provided by Indian Constitution.

The need of the hour to look beyond the manager is new proposal of redefining Minority Status bill pending in United Progressive Alliance Government’s agenda. Attempt to redefine minority status at state level will loose the minority status presently available to Christians in Nagaland, Mizoram and Meghalaya. Sikhs in Punjab and Muslims in Jammu & Kashmir will also loose their minority status.

What is the necessity of redefining minority status at state level? Or is it some form of attempt to harass minorities?

The need of the hour to look beyond the manger is the ever increasing Christian persecution in India. Four attacks per week have added 192nd attacks from January till date. This account does not include the unreported incidents.

While celebrating this year’s Christmas, thousand of Christians will fear to open their mouths to sing even a single word of “Joy to the world.” Hindutva forces watch close to attack, kill and torch. Singing “Joy to the World” will be allegedly with false charges of forced and fraud conversion to many pastors, fathers, nuns and Christian brothers and sisters. Standing up for rights together and condemning defaulter is the rights to look the beyond manger.

Last but never the least, the need of the hour to look beyond the manger is the Anti Conversion Laws being passed by different states. The anti conversion laws in Madhya Pradesh, Chhatisgarh, Orissa, Arunachal Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Gujarat, Rajasthan, and Himachal Pradesh have been termed as anti constitutional by National Commission for Minorities as it violate the fundamental rights provided by Indian Constitution.

Look beyond the manger is the intimation to all Christians for this Christmas. The modern form of hidden slavery, the raise of fascist’s greater threat to Indian secularism, the space between Indian haves and Indian have-nots, the physical, legal and media harassment on Christians, are few to look beyond the manger.

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#1
Deepti Lamba
URL
November 26, 2007
11:43 PM

In the words of Dr. Sam Paul - Public Affair Secretary of All India Christian Council (www.aiccindia.org), "Christian community gave Quality Education, Quality Health Care and Quality Preaching to make Indians better citizens by following God given values. In return, Christians received physical, legal and Media violence."

The nostalgic dreams of remembering the good old Raj days. How about talking about the three land revenue systems that the British used to leech off this country? The humiliation we natives faced? We couldn't walk down our own streets.

God given values? Were we savages before Christianity set foot on the South Asian soil?

#2
Lakshmikanth
URL
November 27, 2007
12:55 AM

Well said Dee!
Madhu Chandra presents fiction in the form of facts, or presents unsubstantiated statements as facts.

If you call such statements as dog shit.. and DC as a presentation plate... i would call this post.. fresh dog shit on a presentation plate.

Extremists like Madhu Chandra who morph reality into their own fanaticism induced delusion fuel the christian extremist and the other REAL christian terrorists to act on the delusion.. so that the infidels and pagans like are murdered and their women force raped to be married... as told by the bible Judges 21, King James Bible :)

Extremists like Madhu Chandra should be on the terror watch list of India and should have agents following each and every moves of her/him including getting financial details on who in the west is bribing her/him to write such heinous pile of dog shit on DC.

#3
Muringathuparabill Jose
November 27, 2007
02:08 AM


Dear madhu,

Applicate your thought and it is not dog shit or bullshit. It is one thing of which modern Christians have been certain it is that Jesus was a true man, bone of our bone, flesh of our flesh, in all points tempted as we are. Theologians of all shades of opinions have declared that in respect to His human nature Christ is consubstantial with ourselves.

We need only read the Gospels to attest to the fact of Jesus' genuine humanity. There is not a limitation that humanity shares that Jesus did not fall heir. Like the rest of us, he got hungry. When at the well of Sameria he asked the women who was drawing water for a drink. When he grew tired, he needed rest and sleep. He leared obedience, we are told, in the way we must learn it. When his disciples were unfaithful it was very cutting to his heart. The blindness of the city he longed to save moved him to tears. In the garden he experienced the normal agony of any individual in the same situation. On the Cross, he added to all physical tortures the final agony of feeling God-forsaken.

Muringathuparambill Jose

#4
Sam Paul
URL
November 27, 2007
02:18 AM

The Raj is a very bad time for India. The Colonial rulers were bent on making the most of Indian Economy and keeping the local population under subjugation.

But along side came other British / Canadian / American Missionaries that did not belong to the Colonial empire. For E.g: William Carey of Calcutta was not even permitted by the Colonial Empire. These missionaries went to the most depressed classes of the society that yours and my forefathers labelled as untouchables. They gave them haircut, cleaned them, touched them and showed love to them in the name of God. Please do not negate their influence in several states of India in the name of Christ. Down with Colonial Empire. All citizens of India should condemn it. All Intellectuals of India should also salute the good and daring acts of missionaries in touching the untouchables and bringing them education, health and God (where as Hinduism has said that there is no access even to the temple, forget about God).

Cheers

Sam Paul

#5
Deepti Lamba
URL
November 27, 2007
02:46 AM

Sam, having studied in a Christian school and taught in one I am well aware of the humanitarian efforts put in by missionaries as well as by priests and nuns.

But the condescending and patronizing attitude that some have towards non- Christians cannot be negated either.

I agree there have been attacks on minorities in far flung areas but many a times when the non-Christians come to their rescue their efforts go unreported by the media.






#6
Sam Paul
URL
November 27, 2007
04:55 AM

Deepthi, I am glad you mentioned where you studied and am glad that the blessings of some one being a devout Christian has extended to you like it did to several Crores of people in India.

In a basket of 100 fruits, 10 fruits not being nice is supposed to be normal!? If there were fanatics in Christianity, it is possible. But it is not the case of the majority. But in general, Advani, Vajpayee, Arun Shourie, Arun Jaitley, Jayalalitha and scores of Hindu leaders were educated in Christian schools. Not many of them became Christians. In Andhra Pradesh ALL the Cheif Ministers studied in Christian Colleges. Only Rajasekhar Reddy is a Christian through the faith of his mother (not converted in an institution I mean). So, religious fanaticism is to be condemned in all religions. But Humane treatment of other human beings and accepting others as ourselves (not by their caste, color, creed or religion) should be the goal of human beings. Hindu fundamentalists (not Hindus, mind you) are creating a ruckus unnecessarily and causing divisions and hatred in the minds of Muslims and Christians and other sober minded Hindus, that should stop. I am sure you agree with me about that. Cheers - Sam

#7
Deepti Lamba
URL
November 27, 2007
05:41 AM

Sam, the very concept of being - 'the sole truth' paves the way for fundamentalism and unfortunately all religions tend to tout this unfortunate marketing gimmick.

#8
Erron
November 27, 2007
06:18 AM

All religions are fairy tales, con jobs, and confidence games for the weak.

#9
Huh?
November 27, 2007
11:58 AM

"One of its unreported, unheard and hidden stories beyond the manger is the caste apartheid that existed in India for last three thousand years under the Brahmanical control. "...hey author ...who is funding you to write this bull-shit?...whats your real agenda?

#10
Lakshmikanth
URL
November 27, 2007
02:28 PM

Hindu fundamentalists (not Hindus, mind you) are creating a ruckus unnecessarily and causing divisions and hatred in the minds of Muslims and Christians and other sober minded Hindus, that should stop.

"Dr."Sam: So are muslim extremist and so are the bible thumping extremists from the US. Extremism and Fundamentalism are issues that are very serious to the almost non existent secularism in India. The non existence of this fabric has got much to do with extremists like the VHP, SIMI, All India Minority Forum, CPI(Marxist), CPI(Maoist), Bible Thumping Missionaries whose pea brains think that the rest of the world is lost in the dark, and last but not the least extremists LIKE Madhu Chandra and YOU "Dr." Sam, who gleefully generalize an entire culture to be a medieval and then set out to infuse your version of fundamentalism to counter the fundamentalism that is directed against your community. This is not secularism.. this is something that has the potential to be as dangerous as Stalin, Hitler.. or even the Spanish Inquisition (thats the case in point)

I went to a christian school, and we were distributed pamphlets which said that Hindus were targeting christians in north india... the words were HINDUS..... and not extremists hindus.. This was one among the many pile of dog shit that was served to us by those lil nuns, and some of them do happily indulge in abusing kids in school. Maybe the bible says so... who knows.


Anyway.. i am of the strong opinion that "Dr" Sam and Madhu Chandra be on the terror watch list; and their financial transactions from the bible thumpers from Uncle Sam be tracked. A better unbiased picture would emerge, which i am sure would enlighten us way better than the above article which is pile of dog dung.

#11
temporal
URL
November 27, 2007
05:38 PM

dee:

Were we savages before Christianity set foot on the South Asian soil?

woofwooof!

;)

#12
A. S. Mathew
November 27, 2007
07:33 PM

When William Carey requested to have a passage
to India through an East India company ship, they refused his request. The Dutch East India
company was gracious to meet his request, and
Carey got the landing permit only in Serampore which was a Dutch territory. The British coloniaism everywhere in the world was simply
exploited the colonies for survival of that
small island country called Britain. The British rule in India has done two good things:
English language and the railway system.

When non-Christians try to equate Christianity
with British imperialism or their east India
company, that will be a wrong comparison and
conclusion.

#13
Sam Paul
URL
November 28, 2007
01:07 AM

Dear Lakshmikanth,

By reading both of our comments anyone could decide easily who is a terrorist (cultural) that needs to be watched. I pay my income tax very promptly and no dollars come for me, I work in India and declined a H1b visa unlike the shameless Indians that sell themselves to dollars. By our own words people can figure out who is full of dog shit and who can be a pile of waste though studied under the graciousness and kindness of nuns and other philanthropists.

Take care the Govt may be after you. In the meantime enjoy life. Sam

#14
Lakshmikanth
URL
November 28, 2007
02:15 AM

Uncle Sam...oops Dr. Sam... Lets not measure who is good at personal attacks here :) as for allegiance to a foreign governance (quite irrelevant to this topic) People like Gandhi; Ambani, our chacha nehru and for that matter your own teresaji were once somewhere in the foreign land werent they....

I have no idea what H1b has got to do with all this... all i DO know is that people like "Dr." Sam and Madhu Chandra and Teresaji do get a lot of money from the bible thumpers sitting out here. THey would be in the forefront of funding xtian terrorism for with a very high chance, which is as dangerous as any other fundamentalism, which is happening in the north east and was described in some details by one poster named BD out here (with some good original sources).

The above [EDITED] article; is just the beginnings of extremism, just a manifesto of why any extreme, fundamental action is necessary. THe actions would follow once there are sufficient people to actuate it, as seen and observed in North East.

Sorry "Dr." Sam, i think you are as great a fundamentalist as VHP is, only that you dont have enough people to cause harm (in the north east you do). I do understand that there are serious brain washing efforts like the above going on in this direction. Which is why I had to call a spade a spade.. or in this case... [EDITED]

#15
padmini
November 29, 2007
01:32 PM

In response to lakshmikanth. Who are you referring to when you say bible thumping extremists? Is it the crusaders, the catholic churches and othr churches who use church as a means of fiancial gain and take advantage of tht. There is a diffrence between the political/bussiness christianity and for tht matter any religion, and the bible and othr books of othr religion itself. The bible thumping missionaries do not think of the rest of the world is lost in the dark. God and Jesus and the bible says that, its not the missionaries. If you want to argue about tht satement, you should kindly wait till the day of your death and talk it out w/ whose who of gods from all the religions and evn the Jesus himself when your're in heaven. The nuns abusing children are only following their laws and not the bible, they might be like the pharisees who disguise God's laws w/human laws, likewise nuns/priests who think they have more wisdom thn the bible and God himself, are the pepul like you said ar in ur school. No ones infusing their own version, ther is a separation of church and state.

#16
Lakshmikanth
URL
November 29, 2007
01:54 PM

God and Jesus and the bible says that, its not the missionaries. If you want to argue about tht satement, you should kindly wait till the day of your death and talk it out w/ whose who of gods from all the religions and evn the Jesus himself when your're in heaven. The nuns abusing children are only following their laws and not the bible, they might be like the pharisees

Thanks for making my day :)

If this is what missionaries made of you from the lost savage you were (before they probably converted you)... then I pity you.

Believe me... our world of savages are is way better than the dark shit hole that you are now living in. Come with me... and I will show you the light.. and i dont have to wait till the day i die .. because i dont fucking care what jesus said.. :)

As for the bible thumping extremists: If you have been to the US.. and seen some very condescending ads here in some of the churches.. you would know what i am talking about.

My point is extremists are extremists. Be it Hindu, muslim, xtian. THe above article sounds more like a call for radical action. Blind belief that xtianity is the ONLY way to go and others are living shitty lives. ANyone who believes or acts otherwise is out here to oppress Madhu chandra and the likes who would , i am sure, pretty soon take up guns in the name of self defense or in american terms.. "pre-emptive strike".

Infusing one's version of extremism to counter a real of fabricated or outright false extremism that is demonstrated by the "majority" is not secularism, its not sanity, its as evil as the spanish inquisitions, VHP, Jihad or whatever you call it. The basic idea is live and let live.. if you dont do that.. or you call for a pre-emptive strike then you better be on the terror watch list. THis article qualifies for prettymuch all of the above

I would recommend the RAW/GoI or whoever is reading this and is in a position of power, please keep a tab on Madhu CHandra/"Dr." Sam/padmini... it might be of great help later when we have xtian terrorists.

#17
Lakshmikanth
URL
November 29, 2007
02:13 PM

Correction:
Infusing one's version of extremism to counter a real of fabricated or outright false extremism that is demonstrated by the "majority" is not

should be read as


Infusing one's version of extremism to counter a real of fabricated or outright false extremism that is PERCEIVED TO BE demonstrated by the "majority" is not

#18
Chandra
November 29, 2007
02:36 PM


Look at all this bull talk. 3% of all schools are run by missionaries and interestingly a majority of Elite study at these schools. I am unable to understand what the missionaries are trying to achieve out of this? Why dont they shut down all those St josephs and St anthonys in all the big cities and open all those schools in Koraput or Bastar or some place like that. No, they will not. Instead, they will try providing eductaion to the affluent and provide 'old' motorcycles to jeetu in Koraput after he agrees to become a christian. He then sells his motorcycle and gets drunk and beats his wife. This so called Apartheid has been developed and supported by missionaries in India.

#19
Chandra
November 29, 2007
02:43 PM

Sam Paul:4

Two questions

a. If indeed what you say is true. How come 80% of your schools are in urban areas (ICSE website)

b. How come 80% of students in PG programs are from upper caste and the rest 20% donot come from missionary schools (CSO)

c. How come your folks in TN are asking for chirstian reservations

Your contribution to reducing poverty is (-)minus.

If you are serious...shut your schools in the metros and open all of them in the poor villages of Bihar, Orissa and UP

#20
Chandra
November 29, 2007
02:51 PM


There is no difference between missionaries and Al Qaeda. They are fundamentalist, spineless and their minds violent.

#21
kerty
November 30, 2007
01:04 AM

1) GOD given secular state? When did God do that? I thought Secular state was invented to keep God out of state, since missionary God couldn't keep his hands off the affairs of state. I thought GOD hates secular state - that is what xians right in USA tells us. They want usa to be xian nation and not secular state. Why sudden love for secular state?

2) Why are missionaries so fixated on educating the heathens of India when all they do is hate public school system that seeks to educate everybody in USA? They love poor in India but hate welfare state that seeks to take care of all poor in USA. They love to provide health care in India but they hate universal health care initiatives that seek to provide health care to everybody in USA. Xians churches form the backbone of conservative and far-right in American politics and they show no love for poor, downtrodden, diseased, elderly, blacks or women but they are somehow their darlings in India. Why this duplicity?

3) Tell me what happened to locals when missionaries succeeded preaching Gospel in America, South Africa, Australia, New Zealand, Latin America, Mexico? Tell us how they liberated the natives and how come most of the African and Latin world do not feel saved by xianity but feel enslaved by xian west?

4)Missionaries promised dalits that jesus will save them - and poor fellows got converted on such promises - how come they still remain dalits even after embracing you? Why magic of jesus didn't work on them? If Latinos, Hispanics and Blacks who have their own countries have not been saved by embracing Jesus, what does it says about Jesus - snake oil salesmen out to hoodwink the gullibles?

5)poverty and exploitation has nothing to do with religion - they are product of economic and political model adopted by a nation. If you adopt socialist and communist model, of course everybody will be reduced to be pauper as these systems can only redistribute wealth but not create it. If you throw in capialist model as well in the mix to create wealth, of course everybody will try to use/exploit everybody to maximize ones profits and gains. Just because these things get played out and manifest within socio-cultural setup does not mean socio-cultural set up itself is to blame - that amounts to scapegoating and diverting the attention from real culprit, real source of problems. Are not missionaries acting as stooges of such ideologies to harvest propaganda and converts? Just as they once were stooges of colonialists to get foothold in alien lands?

6) Pope has refused to recognize Hinduism as religion. He even talked about harvesting souls in India as a mission of next millenium - a not so subtle threat to convert India into xianity and banish religions of the native. If xianity is not willing to offer a hand of friendship, tolerance, mutual-respect to hindus, than why blame Hindus if Hindus look at missionary activities with suspicion and hostility? If you don't love hindus, than why sudden love for their poor, their women, their children, their health, their education?

7) Look at NE regions where missionaries have succeeded in converting large areas - are these areas willing to live in peace with rest of non-xian areas of India? In stead, they are engaged in violent insurgencies and separatism just because they are in majority now. Is that the price India has to pay for allowing missionaries to convert population into xian majority areas? India can permit religious freedom but it can not allow religious wars, pissing contests about whose religion has the only truth, any justification for needing special rights and freedom to convert people of other faiths. There is no such thing as right to convert others. State can ban missionary conversions to maintain communal harmony.

#22
smallsquirrel
November 30, 2007
06:25 AM

I agree with most of the sentiments here that many of the ideas expressed in this article are at best offensive. I have a very hard time stomaching christian missionaries and their antics. as I think deepti said, the idea that there is only one path to righteousness is a load of shit.

that being said, I do not think there is any need for the animosity that some have spewed forth... like saying that "they don't fucking care what Jesus thinks"... I think that is pretty much just as offensive... have a little tact... some christians are not proselytizers and deserve some respect...

#23
brett
November 30, 2007
11:06 AM

Looks like lakshmikanth, kerty,chandra are athiests, thn guys who are trying to defend sam paul's article bttr not argue w/pepul like chandra, kerty, and lakshmikanth because you will just be beating ur heads against the wall. A message to sam paul, it wud be gud if you just dust yourself and remove the article b/c now these guys have branded you as a terrorist. India will go nowhere if no one respects each religion, rthr the politicians are still fighting out religious disputes as the the olden kingom days in india before, were the kingdoms's fought for their own rights of religion, culture, language etcc... instead of respecting and loving the people despite caste, religion, regional cinema vs bollywood, language etc.

#24
carson
November 30, 2007
11:21 AM

kerty, i agree w/you tht there is no such thing as a right to convert people. Rather its a personal choice between an indivudal and the god or beliefs tht the indivudal will wnt to believe and then comes conversion. The missionaries who are coming to india as you have described must be the modern version of the crusaders, disrespecting hinduism and hindus, and using their jobs as a mean to satisfy their own wealth and misusing tht. In india,especially in bangalore there are churches who are purely existing b.c of political and business reasons, they even elect board memebers based on how much money does tht person have in their bank accounts. Thy maybe using money to open schools, colleges etcc.. but tht money is filthy money not done from their heart but purely to gain recognition and position.

#25
Chandra
November 30, 2007
11:29 AM

Brett

What made you conclude that people here donot respect other religions? People are talking about missionaries, not about christianity.

#26
Lakshmikanth
URL
November 30, 2007
01:17 PM

SS:
"they don't fucking care what Jesus thinks".

I humbly disagree... there is a constitutional protection for free speech.

If you say i should not say that you are saying that its ok to kick taslima out.

Please think before u say :)

#27
Deepti Lamba
URL
November 30, 2007
01:25 PM

If you say i should not say that you are saying that its ok to kick taslima out.

Eh? Dude, enumerate please;)

#28
Aaman
URL
November 30, 2007
01:32 PM

That sounds like a dialogue from Yes, Minister

#29
Lakshmikanth
URL
November 30, 2007
01:44 PM

Aaman, Dee.. LOL enumerations:

SS says: I should not hurt the sentiments of sane xtians :)

I say: If ask me not to hurt other peoples feelings: you are supporting the fundae islamists and the fundae hindus and the fundae xtians who kicked out taslima, Rusdie, Hussain, Da vinci code.

And this precisely is the goal of the constitutional right to free speech without the FEAR (or the need to care about hurting someone)

therefore: Please look before u leap

:D

#30
carson
November 30, 2007
02:24 PM

lakshmikanth, do i have a freedom of speech to say tht the gods and goddesses of hinduism are ridiculas and they have ears but not hear, eyes but have no sight, mouth but no not talk. Please avoid using obscene language, tht is not freedom of speech written by thomas jefferson. Do you respect jefferson, who wrote the constitutional ammendments is a devout christian?

#31
Lakshmikanth
URL
November 30, 2007
02:33 PM

Brett: India will go nowhere if no one respects each religion, rthr the politicians are still fighting out religious disputes as the the olden kingom days

Dude.... i dont know what you are talking about... I am an atheistic-agnostic person if you know what i mean.

Let me explain what i am saying here to you like i would to a 4 year old:
A very dangerous way to define Secularism is that its a way to keep the religion (church, temple, mosque)separate from the state.

That leaves you with a dilemma and its this: When there is a clash between the state and the religion: who would you side to the state or the religion.

Remember in this case there are two power structures, Religion and State. Who would people support incase there is a deep clash.. like say the rama issue?

In Indias case if you support the religion you are not an indian. If you support the state you are not a hindu.

THe other solution is compromise between the state and the religion. In every compromise there is always heavy handedness, and someone would be unhappy. This adds up and leads to a final meltdown sometime or the other.

The other solution is for the state to be agnostic, keep out of all the religions and other fun stuff.. but severely punish the bad guys, regardless of religion even if that dude is the most powerful man in the religion.

Thus, the state has to be over the religion in the power structure. If its not you don't have a secular society. Compare that with what the above article wants to achieve.

THis is why I ask anyone Raw, Goi to keep track of the activities of Madhu Chandra, "Dr." Sam et al. I also would want them to keep track of the VHP monkey brigades and the islamist fundus.

#32
josh
November 30, 2007
02:36 PM

hey lakshmikanth, wht is not hurting the senitments of chrisitans got to do w/supporting fundamentalists of all the religion. Hurting peoples sentiments need not be written as a law in some ammendments, its human nature. The same fundamentalists islamics, hindus, christians, evn jewish have kicked out not only taslima, rushdie, hussain. Before thy kickd all these people, the strict jewish(the leaders of the community/state) in the b.c era kicked out their own god and later jesus(whom u don't f*****g care). So please specify the persons of all these fundamentalits in diff. religions, you'll find out they have one thing in common and thts kicking their god in his behind in each of the religion, and making their own islam, hindu, and chrisitan "religion" for their namesake hopin to be the next prophet muhamad, jesus, buddha, shiva, krishna, etcc.. and being bettr than them.

#33
Lakshmikanth
URL
November 30, 2007
02:36 PM

carson: I dont fucking care about any religion or what it says.

I dont need to know or be bothered what Jefferson did in the morning after he woke up or what he ate for breakfast or whether he believed in god or not.

All i know is that my constitution protects me from blasphemy. please refer to my above comment.

Thanks

#34
Lakshmikanth
URL
November 30, 2007
02:40 PM

Josh: before you get joshed out with adrenaline: Let me be clear.. i have the right to my opinion... even if that being i really dont fucking care what any religion says... or for that matter i really dont fucking care whether god exists or not...

now before u accuse me of other shit.. read the article above.. and see if there is any sanity involved, in terms of respecting other religions or whatever crap u want me to do.

Anyway :) take care buddy. the constitution provides protection to all people and all opinions. If you are questioning that then i am sorry.. u are not an indian :)

#35
jason
November 30, 2007
02:48 PM

lakshmikanth, according to india is still not having tht separation of church and state. In kerala, its already established, each religion is now a non-profitable organization. The state is not willing to interfere w/religions but at the same time, they have empahized freedom of religion and there is no anti-conversion laws. If a state imposes in anti-convrsion laws, thn it would be interfering w/religion. The state can't be "over" the religion nor the religion "over" the state. There should be a permanent separation, and neither having influences ovr another. If ther is a problem between religions, their own organizations have to analyze tht in a peaceful way, w/o favoring 1 religion ovr anthr. Recently in tamil nadu, tamil actress ws criticized by a hindu priest for wearing flip-flops to the temple, this priest took this to court. Wht do you have to say, does the court need to spend time to assess this situation?

#36
Lakshmikanth
URL
November 30, 2007
02:58 PM

Jason: Nice points :). But obviously wrong

Only that kerala has devaswoms i.e. the temple and their incomes belong to the govt. None of the churches or mosques have something like that :) WHoever did that had a little bit of brains.

Now about the flip flop thing:
The temple resides on the indian soil. and has to follow the indian laws (if there is a murder they should be allowed to investigate) However if the temple is private (unlike the temples in kerala which BELONG to the state) then there are some laws in the private org that people have to follow. They can be arbitrated or disputed.

SO your point is invalid here.

#37
carson
November 30, 2007
02:59 PM

lakshmikanth, you're truly an atheist and agnostic, do you atleast beleive in the devil. Anwys, this is not abt the article, everyone's comments led to anothr topic and so on. So, i am commenting on ur freedom of speech and it protects u frm blasphemy. But is ur thinking entirely based on wht philosphers, laws, constitution etcc. say about saying obsecene things evn if ur an athiest. No one in the world has the right to protect you opinions, its ur thought not actions. Unless and until you put ur thoughts into actions and go carry the sign saying f*** all religions and carry an axe strt to destroy thm. Thn the constitution will certainly deprive you of your actions.

#38
Lakshmikanth
URL
November 30, 2007
03:07 PM

carson: Yes i agree with you here. Constitution upon the fact that you have the right to your opinion, even if its blasphemy. However it ALSO protects people like Madhu Chandra to preach and believe in xtianity or say my neighbour ramachandran to believe in Rama. I do not have any right to impose upon them and force them to give up the right.

Likewise, i have no issues when someone takes up a religion out of his own beliefs, but if he is lured, coaxed and fooled into it, i have all the right to educate him of his stupidity.

Now the consitution also says that i can have any opinion about any religion and i should be able to say that opinion without fear. And thats why statements like "i dont fucking care about jesus/rama/mohamad" are consitutionally valid. I hope you get my stand.

#39
jason
November 30, 2007
03:12 PM

Evn if the temple is private, no sense taking it to court b.c tht will against the separation of state and religion. Anwys, looks like ur against all the religions having their place in society. But now these religions shud not be used as supporting the community, districts, and the whole state politically. Instead its suppsd to have worship/relations between each religion's people and each religion's god. It can serve the community by way of purely honest means tht will help benefit each religions people w/o violence, misusing of people, and trying to get into politics for power. This is where clash between state and religion comes, whn one person reprsnting a religion comes to power and misuse religion and hence imposing their own laws according to their minds.

#40
carson
November 30, 2007
03:25 PM

lakshimkanth, i agree whn you say some people are lured, coaxed, and fooled into accepting beliefs. This shows tht some missionaries evn teachers of othr religions are using tht for their selfish attitude. Some missionaries completely deviate from the bible and so does othr teachers of othr religions. Ther are people who are wise not to listen to humans, but to look for themsevles wht the books and to talk it out w/ some loving and honest missionaries not hypocrtical ones. The missionaries tht lure coax, fool people into accepting evn god himself are false people. I am happy to say tht as a chrisitan god himself wud agree w/you, an athiest who have no faith in god,would be wise to notice false and canniving missionaries.Whn even the most educated and powerful preists who were robes and evn some pastors who live their lives just like devils, can so easily lure othr people who do not have the wisdom to discern.

#41
Lakshmikanth
URL
November 30, 2007
04:16 PM

Jason: your points are valid, but not in its entirity. I am not arguing for separation or religion and state. I am arguing for state OVER religion. if the state and the religion collide, i as a citizen would support the state.

Let me give you my perspective, if the court rules that the flipflops are ok... then the priest better follow it. if it does not then the actress better follow it.

thats why i said, state OVER the religion.

#42
razorMirage
November 30, 2007
04:29 PM

"Saffron brigades with western money power have attacked Indian secularism."

Such a joke....with all the evangilism happening even kid knows it is the reverse..
-:)
I can't read more. I stopped right there.

Madhu Chandra....what is your Agenda??

#43
kerty
November 30, 2007
04:52 PM

Brett..

I agree that secularism can not survive in India if it is not built on respect for religions. Secularism in India can not survive if there is not respect AMONG religions as well. It is that mutual respect and love that increases the threshold of tolerance which increases threshold of freedom. I can criticize my wife because we love and respect each other. I get to enjoy that freedom because I respect her and she respects me. But that freedom is not unlimited if it is not fair or I refuse to give her similar freedom to criticize her - she will yell back if it reaches her threshold of tolerance. We can get away with a lot if we build that threshold of tolerance to be very high by very high level of love and respect. Other wise even loving wife will feel offended and hit back. That is also true among religions.

Hindu society itself is a loose federation of many belief and cultural traditions and they have developed very high level of tolerance within - you would rarely see violent confrontations among Jains, Sikhs, Shivites, Vaishnavites, Vedantists and what not - they disagree all the time on small to major issues but their threshold of tolerance prevents ugly turns - none of them have to give up their beliefs or traditions to get along and co-exist. We don't think in terms to right to offend each other, but rather duty to respect each other. Why can't similar model be developed among all religions? In case of India, it is not an option, but an imperative. However, there is no political will among religions and even secular state of India lacks the will. Petty-minded political parties pander to worst elements of these religions, all in the name of religion or secularism. If religions lack the will, it is for secular state to step in and get the job done. But sadly, there is no political party in India up to that challenge. They all are beholden to fanatic element of religions and still pose as champion of secularism and accuse each other to be more secular than others. One would hope that media class would rise above the fray and mobilize public will to set it right - but sadly, media class is much worse than political class - they are mere product and extension of ideologies and political parties who vie to rule India. That means the onus falls on people themselves, majority being hindus, it falls on Hindus but they can't do didley if other religions do not want to. Hindus themselves are so much at the receiving end and their own motives are suspected and rejected outright, Hindus are going to remain reactive rather than pro-active. The onus falls on minority religions to take the initiative. They have to demonstrate that they want to. They have to create a will from within - yes, we would like our religion to be respected and offer similar respect to other religions. In order to bring religions to that platform, each religion has to self-reform to police its own fanatic elements. If even one religion fails to do it, other religions will use that as an excuse to go back to old ways of intolerance. Each religion has to develop moderate constituency, nurture it and bring it to mainstream. You can't have jehadis or missionaries running around speaking for their religion and acting on their behalf - but this is one area that has remained a major stumbling block.

The problem with Islam and xiaity is that they are based on literal interpretation of a book - it does not allow any room to offer different interpretation or rejection of any verses. And fundamentalists are always right, they know their book. If you go by the book and they have to as that is the basis of their religion, than there can no basis for other interpretations. That is why one can't wrest power away from fundamentalists and moderates can not evolve or co-exist. If these religions were amenable to moderates, it would have happened ages ago, and there would have been no need to force their religion to be kept away from state - state and religion both could have co-existed and no secular state or separation of church and state would have born. And that is the wall India keeps hitting on in trying to deal with these religions of the book.

If xianity and religion go strictly by their book, they can not recognize or respect Hinduism nor can they co-exist with Hinduism - they have to be on perpetual Jihad/crusade against Hinduism until Hinduism is converted - violent means when possible, or political/ideological or any other subversive means - the crusade has to go on as a religious duty. Conversion of Hindus is a religious duty and integral part of being a xian - religious freedom can not be complete with out that freedom to convert. And religious freedom is basic human right - right to convert becomes basic human right for xians. Thus missionaries can claim with straight face that they are not offending hindus, they are only enjoying their human rights and basic freedom of religion. The rationale for religious freedom is that each person should be able to discover and realize spiritual self and higher truth in their own way, at their own pace and people do need freedom to do that rather than being imposed upon. But missionaries believe Gospel is the truth and religious freedom means making it available to people and people being able to receive it - there is no more to truth and religious freedom than that. Thus religious freedom and proslytization are synonymous and inseparable. Spreading Gospel is THE religious freedom and propagation of one's faith. One see how seemingly desirable concepts and freedoms get corrupted and subverted by religions that are not amenable to anything but rigid fundamentalist interpretations. That is why such religions have hard time recognizing and accepting religions of other people, much less respecting them. Thus, non-fundamentalist eastern religions who would like to respect all religions and would like to be respected by other religions in return, are caught in no-win situation in India. Nobody is in a position to criticize or challenge the power of fundamentalists - for they lack authority and basis to reject or reinterpret the Book that is sole basis of power for fundamentalists. If people who disagree within such religions can not gain basis, acceptance or respect, other religions can't expect much coming their way either. Thus respecting each other, getting along each other remains a piece of slogan, not worth even piece of paper it is written on.

#44
Lakshmikanth
URL
November 30, 2007
05:02 PM

Kerty: Please tell me, in your ideal society, what is the punishment for a blasphemist like me?

#45
Lakshmikanth
URL
November 30, 2007
05:40 PM

Kerty:

dude you called hinduism etc non-fundu religions:

You mean there is no VHP,Shiv Sena, Babar Khalsa, et al?

#46
kerty
November 30, 2007
08:01 PM

Lakshmikanth..

I would call any religion that is not dependent on strict, literal or single set of interpretation of any source material and single source of authority and power to be non-fundamentalist. Because it can allow different interpretations, different source materials, different authorities to evolve, co-exist and be a basis for challenging and disagreeing among each other. Thus power and authority are never centralized such that they can not be questioned or disagreed with - thus it allows moderate positions to evolve and gain power. Thus Hinduism is non-fundamentalists, not because those who take everything literally and believe only on certain things do not exist - but those who disagree with all that can also co-exist and enjoy their religious freedom. That is why Hindus have so many sects, so many way of worship, so many Gods and Goddesses, so many books, so many religious authorities.

Just because hindusm is non-fundamentalists does not mean hindus can not be fanatic. They will defend their beliefs with same ferocity you would defend yours. If I asked you to give up yours or impose mine on you, you would fight back with tooth and nail - that would make you a fanatic but not a fundamentalist. However strongly you may believe in your ideas, your ideas and beliefs allow others to believe in something different - that is what makes you a non-fundamentalist even though you will never give up your ideas and beliefs without a fight. The extent to which one is ready to defend one's beliefs make one a fanatic or moderate. In Hindu society, you can find both.

VHP and Shiv Sena should be understood in the context of above explanation. They are not central authority for Hinduism and you would find many Hindus agree and disagree with them on different issues. They often use situation-appropriate means to mobilize Hindu public opinion for different causes that they feel are important for Hindu society. One may agree or disagree with them and many Hindus do disagree with them on number of issues and kind of tactics that are used to address certain issues.

Shiv Sena is a political party, much like moslem league, but only highly localized and more ethno-centric than Hindu-centric. Bajrang Dal would be all-India version of Shiv Sena except it is not ethno-centric or political. They settle issues at street level. Ideally, they should not be needed in a democracy and secular state where religion and culture are respected. But ideal situation seldom exists in India and Hindus often find themselves fighting for and defending what they hold dear. One can call them Hindu fanatics and you would find plenty of Hindus opposed to them.

#47
smallsquirrel
November 30, 2007
10:19 PM

laks.... just for the record... OK, if you're going to be egalitarian about it and say "fuck all religions" then I am fine with it. you should know much better than to posit some wacky theory that me saying you should not say "eff jesus" is tantamount to me supporting fundamentalism and that free speech bullshit. you knew what I was saying and wanted to be bratty. just admit! it's a dialog, and using nasty speech just impedes it. plus, I really do not think you would have the gall to say the same thing concerning individual Hindu gods or take the name of Mohammed like that... that was my point.

There is a difference between having a point to make, like Taslima... and simply being a provocative brat, right?

#48
Lakshmikanth
URL
November 30, 2007
10:41 PM

SS: wrong... deep in my heart, or for that matter anywhere in my intellectual radar, i really do not care about whether a god exists or not. So i dont care what religions say, its meaningless. to say all of the above in a contemporary manner in one sentence is this: I dont give a F**K what Rama/Sita/Jesus/Mohamad/Moses says.

if you read it as being a brat ( :) ) then sorry you are being too sensitive :).

I guess people should see what point is being made rather than how its being made.

the wacky theory here being this: If you say.. hey thats wrong! Dont hurt XYZ communal sentiments; XYZ would soon demand that everyone respect ALL the things that XYZ believe in. As seen countless number of times in India. Soon XYZ would get involved in politics and form moral policing brigades and you would still support them atleast ideologically because they are oppressed. This is also observed all the time in India. And sooner or later XYZ would demand that Taslima be executed by stoning. MF hussain be burned at the stakes. Da vinci code be banned. etc etc.

The basic point i am making is that religions have to be BELOW the state in the power hierarchy. i.e. tomorrow i make a point by putting the cross in a bottle of piss (the piss christ issue in the US) or drawing saraswati nude(MF Hussain) or saying that i dont care what fucking jesus/rama said (ME) then I/MF Hussain/the piss christ dude still would be allowed to live and function in the society as a normal human beings.

you have the right to criticize us, the right to voice your opinions as you did above, but i am protected by the constitution. And if you are too sensitive about others religion voice your opinion.. however dont give me a cease or desist notice on a site like this :)

#49
Lakshmikanth
URL
November 30, 2007
10:58 PM

just to add: there is nothing for me to admit :) this is the way i am.

To make it even more clear: You asked me to respect the non proselytizers.

The only way i can respect them is NOT to interfere with their lives; thats what the constitution demands.

I dont define respect as holding myself from saying my belief such as "i dont fucking care whether exists et al" (replace by whoever you believe in). Because thats REALLY, TRULY and deeply my opinion.

If thats what you asked me to do, you are curtailing my freedom of expression. Which places you in the same class as any fundu religion/ government/ people who kicked out MF hussain and Taslima

#50
Lakshmikanth
URL
November 30, 2007
11:01 PM

corection
I dont define respect as holding myself from saying my belief such as "i dont fucking care whether exists et al" (replace by whoever you believe in). Because thats REALLY, TRULY and deeply my opinion.
should be

I dont define respect as holding myself from saying my belief such as "i dont fucking care whether god exists et al" (replace god by whoever you believe in). Because thats REALLY, TRULY and deeply my opinion.

#51
smallsquirrel
November 30, 2007
11:19 PM

laks, dude... chill. seriously. drink a bit less coffee or whatever. I am not trying to silence your constitutional rights here. I am just telling you to have a bit of class.

also, your use of a slippery slope argument here is a bit overblown. get off the hyperbole.. there was no "cease and desist notice" just a comment saying that your language was not the greatest

and when someone like me says that (someone known for using rather ripe language) you might take a bit of notice

#52
Lakshmikanth
URL
December 1, 2007
01:13 AM

SS: class has never been my strong points. I am working on it.

If you are smart enough, i have heard that class can make you fool a lot of stupid people and some clever ones. Never had the need to do that.. however coming to think of it, class is a useful weapon :)

#53
smallsquirrel
December 1, 2007
06:54 AM

laks.. we all gotta start somewhere ;) and yup, I mean look at the amount of people on this very forum that use big words but there's nothing but hot air behind them. some are fooled and some are not...

anyway, you should know that I have no issues with people voicing just about any position. I think free speech is as important as the next person. But I also know that some words automatically impede dialog. so one has to be choosy about which words one uses where, right? I mean, I use words all the time to provoke. That's fair game. I just wanted to ask you if you were expressing or provoking. One should be deliberate... that is my only request.

#54
ajay
December 1, 2007
11:05 AM

err..sorry to interrupt the lively conversation, but what does 'manger' mean?

#55
A. S. Mathew
December 1, 2007
01:27 PM

#54 Ajay: Manger means " a trough or box for feeding horses or cattle". Jesus Christ, the saviour of mankind got such a humble luxury to be
born; not in a cradle filled with velvet furnishing inside a mansion.

#56
kerty
December 1, 2007
05:55 PM

Mathew..

'Jesus Christ, the saviour of mankind' sounds like saving mankind as xians' burden, much like white-supremacists see civilizing world as white men's burden. Why not concentrate instead on saving those who are already xians? It is such arrogant supremacist attitudes and ambitions that lend xians into missionary mess. Why do you presume non-xians need to be saved by jesus or want to be saved by Jesus? It presumes non-xians are not saved by and can not be saved by whatever they believe in - do you understand why non-xians would take such claims as hate and malice towards their faiths and react to xians with similar hate and malice? It does not matter missionaries give the poison pill with sugar and honey, it still upsets the whole system where ever missionaries set their foot.

#57
Lakshmikanth
URL
December 1, 2007
06:48 PM

A.S, you can exclude me from the definition of mankind which Jesus saves :)

you have no right to ask Jesus to save me. Jesus has no right to save me or the permission to save me :)

#58
free_kafir
December 1, 2007
10:21 PM

Lakshmikanth...
"no right to ask Jesus....Permission to save me..." was really funny.
I am requesting your permission to use this words when these xians come and say these cr ap smiling (with a hidden agenda offcourse).
-:)

#59
Lakshmikanth
URL
December 1, 2007
10:39 PM

free_kafir: Be my guest :)

#60
rithesh
December 1, 2007
11:01 PM

In different language.

some people call it water, some people call it pani, some people call it Jal.

does it make difference ?

why fight for language ?

#61
ajay
December 2, 2007
12:32 AM

Thanks Mathew, I got the literal meaning but was not sure how it tied in to topic of the article.

#62
A. S. Mathew
December 2, 2007
11:14 AM

I simply answered a question of Ajay, but it has
provoked some of you. Desicritics participants
are all educated in different levels. But it is
very sad to notice vulgar languages from some
people. If the discussion is carried on in mutual respect, that would be great. Personal
attacks are getting too common which is a very
sad part of the whole matter.

The topic of religion is the most heated subject,
let believers of all religions including atheists
and agnostics may participate the discussion in
mutual respect because every person has the right to believe whatever they want to believe and tell it openly.

#63
smallsquirrel
December 2, 2007
11:55 AM

A.S. we all here know that you are a devout christian... what was objected to was your blatant proselytizing. I think you'll find that since we all know your personal views, if you keep the preachy stuff to a minimum no one will mind your opinion, even if it is religiously based. it's just that no one wants the preachy stuff from ANYONE, regardless of religion.

you do not have to hide that you are a christian, but neither should you beat people over the head with it (unless you want the kind of reaction you seemed to object to)

#64
A. S. Mathew
December 2, 2007
01:13 PM

smallsquirrel: You are born with a spirit to
create friction in others. Are you doing for the
fun of it or is it simply your inborn nature?
Did I preach anything to offend you? If so, I am
sorry.

#65
smallsquirrel
December 2, 2007
01:38 PM

A.S. why are you attacking me? I simply explained to you why people were offended by what you said. I am not born with a spirit to create friction in others. I simply pointed something out to you, and I did it in a much nicer way than the others, whom you chose to ignore.

and what happened to judge not lest ye be judged?

#66
A. S. Mathew
December 2, 2007
04:09 PM

Smallsquirrel: Please don't have any misunderstanding, I didn't attack you in anyway.
In my writing, if I attack any religion or deity,
it will be an attack on that religion. I am very
cautious not to offend anybody, especially through the matter of religion. There is nothing
offensive in what I have written in response to
Ajay's question. Everybody writing in the
Desicritics knows what I have mentioned.

I do apologize to you if I have offended you in
my writing.

#67
Lakshmikanth
URL
December 2, 2007
05:14 PM

AS:
Everybody writing in the
Desicritics knows what I have mentioned.


I am sorry, but i really do not KNOW or am interested in knowing what you mean by Jesus as savior of mankind.

and that is precisely the reason why i asked you to exclude me from the list of people whom you include in your definition of mankind. I dont bother or care to be saved by jesus, he has no right to do it unless i ASK for it.

Jesus better not encroach into my private life or else i will sue him :)

#68
razorMirage
December 2, 2007
06:07 PM

Can anyone A.S or Madhu Chandra pls update me with some knowledge.
Can you tell me how much money I get if I get converted to Christianity. I can even convert my wife also in the process. So 2 conversions !
I heard that last time when I was in India my maid converted to Christianity and she got some money as lumpsum and on montly basis from some Xian organisations in West.

#69
Puskin
December 2, 2007
10:34 PM

As my understanding on how much to get by becoming christian is other way around. By becoming, it is taught to pay 10% of his/her income back to the church.

Secondly reality is that people used to offer money to become christians. that happened once in some where in delhi or mumbai where ndtv caught a pastor being bribed to issue fake baptism cetificate to some persons.

#70
smallsquirrel
December 2, 2007
11:27 PM

A.S. laks has explained now what the issue was. although you think you are careful, your language is often preachy. and you did tell me that I have a spirit to create friction in people and accused me of doing that for fun. how is that not attacking me?

no need to explain, I just think you come off very differently than you intend. because there was something offensive to people of other religions in what you wrote

peace

#71
Chandra
December 3, 2007
08:16 AM

Razorimage

In my home district of tribal Koraput in Orissa, the average one time payment per family was between Rs 5000 and Rs 10000 ($ 250). I am assuming it is the same in CSG and JHA as well.

Assuming a budget of $ 400 M last year, a maximum of 6.4 M people converted to christianity last year.

rgds

#72
Lakshmikanth
URL
December 3, 2007
01:04 PM

Chandra:

is there any way to collect statistics on this? I am sure those who do that would be murdered by both the bible thumpers here (read neocons) and the goons in india (read politicians/NGOs).

But i am thinking in the lines of a sting :)

Please let me know if we can collaborate on this

Thanks

#73
A. S. Mathew
December 3, 2007
04:44 PM

RazorMirage 68# Since you have put my name, let me answer your question. I spent three days with
Anil Kant and Rena Kant in Chicago while they came for a music tour. They are well known
recording artitists from Bombay, also produced the
the programme " pray for India " Through google
search engine, you can locate his website and you can ask them that question. When you ask
question of that nature, it is better to get an
answer from such kind of people who came from
another religion to follow Jesus Christ.

#74
A. S. Mathew
December 3, 2007
05:30 PM

Smallsquirrel: I don't know, how to explain my
sincere apology to you. I don't understand what preachy
thing I did! Probably you read my comments with
a different mindset than other people, if so any
apology I can give you will not settle your hard
feeling towards me.

Regards and peace.

#75
razorMirage
December 3, 2007
08:47 PM

A. S. Mathew:
You found a perfect model for western world.
They want one poor Hindu converted as a example for the youth there. It is known fact that youth in USA no longer go to Church
I can give 100 examples how Christianlity is dying in Western World.
That is one of reason why they are Conversion spree.

#76
razorMirage
December 3, 2007
08:48 PM

Anyway, you din't anwer my question. How much will I get if I get converted. DO YOU HAVE THE GUTS TO SAY THE TRUTH.

#77
smallsquirrel
December 4, 2007
05:15 AM

razor... take it easy... A.S. is just an average person... I don't think s/he is the center of the christian conspiracy or has the answer to your question!

a.s. what was preachy is when you referred to jesus as "the savior of all mankind". some people don't believe that, and since you've made your faith clear, there is no need to tack on a bunch of things. (i.e., son of god, lamb of god, the savior, etc) to his name unless you have a point to make. when you use a lot of that kind of language people lose your point and focus on that, because it is very much like proselytizing. no more apologies needed, I was just trying to explain to you why you got such a reaction. and I read your comment the same as others... look at their reaction to you!

#78
A. S. Mathew
December 4, 2007
07:53 AM

Smallsquirrel: Your observation that the young
people are not going to Church might be true in
Europe, but more youths are coming to Church in
the U.S.

#79
smallsquirrel
December 4, 2007
08:09 AM

A.S. that was not my observation at all... please do not confuse peoples' comments!!!

#80
A. S. Mathew
December 4, 2007
03:11 PM

RazorMirage #75: You are asking me a question in
capital letters like inviting me for a war of words with you, and you are not going to get me
for that kind of fight but I will answer the question in the best possible manner.

Without giving money to anybody from my pocket to become a Christian, I can't answer that question. My family in India was Christians for
generations, and we call ourselves as Syrian
Christians. The history says that our forefathers
came from middle-east. I don't have any record,
how much money my great-great grandfather got
for coming to Christianity!

While I was on a business trip to India, I met
a Pastor (he was a former Hindu) and his church
members, around 600 people. He took me to the
Church and I was afraid of sitting under that roof because at any time it can fall down. So,
I gave money to build a church which can accommodate that many people. Also, I plan to use that building for conducting medical camps
in the monsoon season to give free medical care
for all people. I never will question their
religion or name, it will be free for everybody.

I don't believe in giving money to change one's
religion, that is unethical. If a person is changing the religion for materials things, that
person will embrace another religion for a bigger
amount of money. If somebody is offering money
to convert people, I am dead against that policy.

I have answered your question even though your question was rather intimidating.

Regards, my friend.

#81
Chandra
December 4, 2007
03:54 PM


In Orissa, all the missionaries grab tribal land after converting them. They did that in Africa and now they are doing it in India.

#82
Peace
December 4, 2007
04:16 PM

Hello Razormirage and Chandra: Well what are Hindu Organizations doing while we guys are converted and converting, after all the VHP and et al are sitting on crores, they already have crores to build the magnificent ram temple, why don't these guys spend money for the welfare of the people like christian missio does.
Tell what is bad even if money is paid for conversion, it is better than letting a person die. Anyway you are loosing him, so what the heck.

#83
A. S. Mathew
December 4, 2007
05:06 PM

Peace 82: I salute you for your rational question
to the chronic critics of Christian Missionaries.
Spending millions of Dollars for a fancy
buildings like Tajmahal for worship by any religion is too hard for me to fathom. As a
Christian, I have ruthlessly questioned when
people try to raise funds for building extravagant Church buildings while members of the
same Church are struggling to make both ends meet.

Let us meet the challenge of meeting the needs of
millions of people in our country someway or other, instead of fighting and killing each other
in the name of religion. Adopt one person and
make a difference in that person's life.

#84
kerty
December 4, 2007
07:13 PM

As #83

I like the sentiment that need of the hour is to focus on development of nation and not differences.

We need to move away from politics of poverty, politics of shortages, politics of divisions and focus on needs of nation as a whole. We have wasted 50+ years in pursuing wrong-headed politics and we should have learned our lessons by now. We can't have progress if we get mired in what devides us - hindu-moslem, majority-minority, rich-poor, uppercaste-lowercaste, male-female, north-south, hindi-english, urban-rural, agriculture-industry, farmer-nonfarmers. We have to think how can be grow the economic pie for 1billion people and device policies to address it - if we keep tailoring our policies to take care of only this sub-group or that sub-group and neglect to grow the overall economic pie, we would be forever fighting with each other for small piece of crumbs. I like Modi's approach to development when he says he doesn't look at people as hindus or moslems, farmers or laborers, upper caste or lowr caste, he looks at them as 5.5 crore Gujaratis and whoever is willing to bring development for the benefit of Gujarat is welcome. Those who contribute to development will get rewarded and those who don't will be left behind. When economic policy is reduced to ad-hoc schemes for taking care of small sub-parts and sub-groups, development can not take place and economic pie will not be enough to take care of everybody.

I like the focus on education - but is our economic engine robust enough to generate economic opportunities when these people come out of education? I like the focus on tribal and rural development, but can we provide economic opportunities when these people come out of their traditional family occupations and farming? Can our economic model create a land of opportunities for 1 billion people? Why is India's politics not gravitating towards creating such a policy framework rather than pandering to this or that group? Show me a group that does not think it needs more support and empowerment - but why should state get involved in picking and choosing among them, creating winners and losers? State's focus should remain people as a whole, not a whole that is sub-divided into groups. If a policy initiative is not aimed at the whole, it has no place in state-craft. If chattering political class is not willing to step up to the plate but perpetuate divisive anti-development politics in the name of empowering or redressing this or that group, than don't complain about poverty, exploitation, conflicts, persecution and slavery. I consider it politics of opportunism and exploitation - like digging a hole so people can fall in it so that one can than pose as a saviour by pulling few from the hole. Missionaries usually piggy back on such politics but AS's comment is breath of fresh air.

#85
kerty
December 4, 2007
07:45 PM

AS #83

'Adopt one person and make a difference in that person's life' - Come to think of it, it implies 1billion people are orphans needing adoption. We need to change why 1billion people are orphans, why do they need adoption. The problem is nobody thinks about 1billion people, everybody is for himself and family around him - we only think about ourselves and those whom we have adopted - that is what creates small circles of special interests and group-think. Each of us need to adopt 1 billion people and think of ways they can be take care of - if we all think on these lines, it will bring different set of ideas and debates and that is what will change political discourse in the country - when everybody is thinking about 1billion people, nobody will feel orphaned. Right now, nobody does that. People feel orphaned by state, politicians, political process, everybody else. Sure you and I can take care of one or two persons here and there, but that won't address root causes of orphanage. State too does the same mistake - it takes care of few groups here and there, and that has not done much for 1billion people as a whole either. Right now, India is harvesting orphans and missionaries are adopting whoever they can. If missionaries are sincere about taking care of people, and not harvesting for adoptions, they have to step out and not become part of the problem.

#86
A. S. Mathew
December 4, 2007
08:36 PM

Kerty: I do agree with you 100%. Human selfishness is a universal malady. It is like
the tune we can create while traveling in a train
" myself and my family ".

If we try to help one helpless person in any
manner, that will bring relief to that person,
besides it will generate a lot of inner joy in our hearts. The Government can't solve he
massive problem of the millions of people living in each and every city without any hope. The rich
and the middle class have to take one step to help somebody and it will create a great revolution.
" a thousand mile walk starts with the first step"
Chinese proverb.

Several years back, one boy in Philadelphia while passing through the downtown area saw a lot of poor people in extreme cold winter. He began to collect blankets and distributed to the
poor, and he began to get news converage. Many
people began to donate blankets and money, and that humanitarian work was turned into a great
project. Every great project starts in a small
beginning.

#87
razorMirage
December 4, 2007
08:40 PM

Let me be clear. I don't have thing against Syrian Christians.
They are the symbol of India's undeclared, untold secularism.Actually for me accepting Syrians, Parsis in the mainstream is the perfect example of Secularism.
I am only against the conversions happening after 19th century. These are malicious machinations against the Indian values with wider agenda to divide India. Not to mention they try to trick and maneuver the poor, illiterate, novice people who can't even judge what is right or wrong for them.

#88
kerty
December 5, 2007
12:53 AM

AS

Give somebody a fish, and you solved his hunger for a day. Show him how to fish and you have solved his hunger for life. Charity has a place in life. But it can not be a substitute for robust economic paradigm that only state can promote. If we leave state alone to defective and dishonest ideologies, no amount of charities will be enough to take care of 1 billion. And when we stop thinking about needs of 1 billion people and divert our attention instead to needs of one individual or one group, that is what happens, the vaccum is filled by dishonest forces that exploit the poverty of their own creation. Look at India's own experience.

People who took over statecraft said caste was bad - that emptied castes off their role in providing economic security which was meant to be for generations, but no longer there anymore. They said literacy is good - that drove educated young generation away from perpetuating their family trade and profession. They said green revolution is good - that emptied people from rural and agricultural sectors looking to do something else. That is massive dislocation of people looking for economic security. It seemed good-intentioned. But state failed to back it up with economic framework to absorb this dislocation and loss of wealth creation. In stead, it slapped a command economy with license-permit-production quota-scarcities raj. It scoffed at wealth creation and persecuted private sector with stiffling laws, taxation and propaganda. State become the main employer leaving vast majority to fend for themselves with no access to economic security. And the same politicians who were entrusted with the state and its economic policies coined slogans of 'Garibi Hatao' to exploit very poverty they engineered in the system. They fed poor to ever-willing missionaries and communists who made the best of struggles faced by common men by framing the issues within context of hindu Vs dalits, rich vs poor, upper caste v lower caste propaganda, never allowing the awareness and discourse to rise above them to expose that there were major ideological power plays at work behind massive destitution in India. Missionaries, communists, socialists, pseudo secularists - they all feasted on economic dislocation that nation experienced, for their own empowerment. That charities, their championing of poor was self-serving and dishonest. Like politics, charities too can become the refuge of scoundrels who need a face-lift to hide their ulterior agenda that exist at other levels. Charity, like politics, would be sincere when it seeks to address cause as well as manifest symptoms/consequences.

#89
Aaman
URL
December 5, 2007
01:11 AM

Jesus was a fish

#90
Chandra
December 5, 2007
01:38 AM

ASMathew : If we try to help one helpless person in any manner, that will bring relief to that person,besides it will generate a lot of inner joy in our hearts

Chandra: How can you derive joy from somebody else's misery? Are you sadistic or what? Just because you helped somebody and he is better off, you derive happiness from that? Dont you have any humility?

#91
Lakshmikanth
URL
December 5, 2007
01:52 AM

A.S, Peace et al

Kerty mentioned one of the fundamental concepts of economics which is a balance against another fundamental principle which is blatantly misused by The missionaries and the Bush, chenney war machine.

The first one is a question of growing asset, Knowledge of how to live is more important than 10,000Rs one time for converting to xtianity.
Missionaries have failed in this, as mentioned above. The knowledge of how to live in an economically productive manner is uncorrelated with any religion, xtianity or otherwise. infact its negatively correlated, because all religions have some or the other convoluted principles in them that fly in the face of common sense economics.

The second one is that people act on incentives provided to them. Which is obvious. Now most of india does not have a quick way to get economic traction, i.e. trade flowing smoothly and people profiting everywhere. This is primarily because of lack of economic understading among indians and the ultra conservative nature of doing the same things the same way that it has been done for the last 100,000 years. Its this economic illiteracy that the xtian missionaries exploit. They give small incentives to convert and make sure that many do not know how to live economically productive life.

In the end the areas that missionaries have set foot on become worse of than what they were before.

I have to state my stand here. One Dhirubhai ambani, on whom atleast a million people are living a happy life or for that matter one scientist who set of the green revolution saving india from famines and making it gain self sufficient is better than a mother teresa.

#92
A. S. Mathew
December 5, 2007
05:38 AM

Chandra, I simply expressed my personal experience of having joy while I serve the poor.
Don't you know the meaning of " Sadist ". A sadist will hurt a poor person, but what I am
talking about is to help him, which is called
"compassion".

#93
peace
December 5, 2007
05:53 AM

Chandra #90
Chandra you look confused, either you comment on the blog for the sake of commenting or you are on the blog to express the hatred your are brewing against Muslims and Christians of India.
Quote Chandara " Just because you helped somebody and he is better off, you derive happiness from that? Dont you have any humility? "'"
Chandra the misery was already there we do not created it, when we help that misery to be solved does not it gives a inner satisfaction. Or we should not help the needy for the fear of getting blamed as a Sadistic.
Tell me what is your problem, I saw ur comments before on Muslims also? why such hatred? did a christian missio duped you ? or a Islamic terrorist bombed somebody near to you ? or your sister eloped with a Muslim guy?. Or somebody in your family converted to Islam or Chris I will help you write to me bro,

#94
A. S. Mathew
December 5, 2007
06:05 AM

RazorMirage: Your fear that the Christians will
divide India is a misunderstanding. Christianity came to India in the first century,
and the Christian community was always very loyal their mother land. It is the politicians
with vested interests create confusion among
people. The politicians know, how to divide the
society and rule them, so that they can hold on
to your political profession but the ordinary
people kill each other.

Lakshikant: I have repeatedly made my point that
I don't believe in conversion through force or
any inducement. But I stronly believe and fight
for the right of every individual to change their
religious faith based on their personal convictions; which is the fundamental right of
every person born to this world. Whenever I help
a poor person, I will not tell him/her to come to my religious faith. I can't speak on behalf of other people who are doing contrary to my
personal convictions. When I help some people
in my humble capacity in certain parts of India,
I don't even see them. I did according to my
compassion that God has given me, and happy about it.


my religious faith

#95
Chandra
December 5, 2007
07:02 AM

Peace 93

Please paste all my anti-muslim and anti-christian comments here. I want to see them. There is a limit to lies.

I think it is sinful to be satisfied from helping somebody else. Helping somebody is our responsibility and a human thing to do. By seeking happiness in helping others we are being selfish.

#96
peace
December 5, 2007
08:30 AM

Chandra I don't need to paste all your comments, I better suggest to be introspective.
Well if helping somebody gives you satisfaction it is not selfishness,
"Helping somebody is our responsibility and a human thing to do."
So you think everything as duty and responsibility, this is dangerous, the moment you began thinking this is not my duty and responsibility. It is too rational sometimes you need to do things for heart just not mind. Take care

#97
Chandra
December 5, 2007
11:32 AM

Peace

You made an accusation that you have not backed up by facts. Therefore am assuming you withdraw your statement about me being anti-muslim or anti-christian

I dont understand your second point. You are suggesting that I should not act in a rational way?


#98
A. S. Mathew
December 5, 2007
05:49 PM

Aaman 89# I have read in the Bible what Jesus
said " I am the bread of life" . Your statement
" Jesus was a fish " was a new information for me. Fish is better than bread, so you need to
taste that fish.

Regards.

#99
A. S. Mathew
December 5, 2007
06:13 PM

Chandra 95# Your philosophy that helping the poor
for deriving joy is selfishness is a great thought of higher dimension.

If somebody is spending money to derive joy in the
pleasures of life, that is selfishness. But when
somebody spent money and time to help a helpless
person, and deriving an inner joy out of that is
not selfishness. Respecting your suggestion; in the future, whatever I could do will be done as
a moral obligation.

#100
A. S. Mathew
December 5, 2007
06:13 PM

Chandra 95# Your philosophy that helping the poor
for deriving joy is selfishness is a great thought of higher dimension.

If somebody is spending money to derive joy in the
pleasures of life, that is selfishness. But when
somebody spent money and time to help a helpless
person, and deriving an inner joy out of that is
not selfishness. Respecting your suggestion; in the future, whatever I could do will be done as
a moral obligation.

#101
rithesh
December 5, 2007
09:54 PM

I have question to all respected people here who are so knowledegable in religion.

Have any one seen God among you ?

#102
smallsquirrel
December 5, 2007
10:43 PM

yes rithesh... I see God every day. God is in everything, so when I look outside and see trees or look at my infant, I see God. God is in water and walls and even a sheet of paper.

#103
kerty
December 5, 2007
10:44 PM

AS..

Xtianity is often touted for its compassion and charity. But that is only in the context of its missions in alien turfs. Where xtianity has gained its foothold, its votary remain biggest opponents of welfare state that seeks to take on that role of compassion and charity/welfare of needy. So really, compassion and charity are not intrinsic to xtianity as it is made out to be in other parts of the world.

Xtianity has two ACT in their mission.

1) ACT#1 - Help powers that be dig the hole so people can fall in it
2) ACT#2 Help few people pull out of that hole

Xtianity and people like AS constantly highlight the ACT#2 to give its mission a face-lift and earn few converts in the process. Once ACT#1 and ACT#2 gain foothold in alien land, likes of Madhu step in to pull at institutions and power structures that hold native hegemony in that land.

ACT#1 is usually carried out by state-sponsored ideologies transplanted from outside - so they too find themselves at odds with power-structures within to feel at home. Xtianity's power plays with these ideologies also get inherited wherever these ideologies find home - however, adversary roles between these ideologies and xtianity get total make-over - they find themselves more like allies than adversaries to tackle native resistance. Colonialism, communism, socialism, capitalism, feminism, secularism etc find missionaries to be allies rather than foes and missionaries find them to be their allies too. Xtians like AS would be focussed with ACT#2 often oblivious to ACT#1 while missionaries like Madhu busy with ACT#1. But together, with the combine axis of likes of AS and Madhu, both act#1 and act#2 get accomplished, Xtianity's mission phase one accomplished. Vested-interests in media limit awareness to compartmentalized and distorted view and bog people down to personality level or at the most to micro-issue level awareness.



#104
rithesh
December 5, 2007
11:46 PM

"yes rithesh... I see God every day. God is in everything, so when I look outside and see trees or look at my infant, I see God. God is in water and walls and even a sheet of paper. "


smallsquirrel,

I bow to you, mother.

#105
smallsquirrel
December 6, 2007
12:11 AM

no need to be rude, man. you asked a question and you got an answer. sorry if you wanted something else but you did not get it.

grow up.

#106
A. S. Mathew
December 6, 2007
08:31 AM

Chandra: I don't know how to explain a subject
to you. Whatever I do is due to my inborn
compassion or religious conviction. After doing that I get a great joy out of that. The motivating force is " compassion " and the effect
" joy " is the seconary thing. May I request you
to help the poor with any motive you have, expecting nothing in return. You are a great
saint in that respect.

#107
Anamika
December 6, 2007
08:39 AM

Two cents worth: "Spending millions of Dollars for a fancy buildings like Tajmahal for worship by any religion is too hard for me to fathom..."

Taj Mahal is a tomb not a place of worship. Moreover, by Islamic tenets a place of burial cannot be used as a place of worship. This is one reason the mosques in Spain that were converted into Churches (Cordoba, Seville, Cadiz etc) were used immediately for burying Christian dead, to ensure that even when the battles were lost the buildings could not be reclaimed.

#108
Danilo
January 6, 2009
08:23 PM

"This is one reason the mosques in Spain that were converted into Churches (Cordoba, Seville, Cadiz etc) were used immediately for burying Christian dead, to ensure that even when the battles were lost the buildings could not be reclaimed."

Where did you here that? Buring dead in churches in normal in Christianism.
Besides, those mosques were built over christian visigothic churches in the VIII century, so who really "reclaimed"?

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