Wednesday, May 25, 2005

Oh those Hindus!

How crude, with their antiquated practices and illogical traditions!
A constant refrain of the left-leaning jurnos and the obvious secularists / modernists of today.

When incidences occur that looks like an affront to progressive, modern thinking one thing is prominent by its absence. The “other” viewpoint.

While it is OK to wear a banian with pictures of Lord Ganesha or Shiva, it is an outrage when MF Hussain paints Saraswathi or Durga.

But why so? No one really got their view. Or perhaps the trishul wielding folks are not sophisticated enough to articulate their stance with clarity.

One reason could perhaps be - they “perceived” such incidences as “deliberate and calculated attempt” at denigration.

Why do they do so? Politics is one reason, historical baggage is another. Both cannot be wished away overnight. That’s the plain vanilla.

And now, Tina Turner CAN act as Durga.
But WHY Tina Turner?
Answer – why can’t she?

She can’t - because of the image she projects by her persona.

As far as the incident of the innocent leak by Anilkumar’s son at the Vadakkumnatha Shiva temple in Thrissur is concerned, is as unfortunate as it is silly.

Now let us understand that even if a person was to visit a friends’ home and the child happens to take a leak, involuntarily, it does cause some degree of embarrassment. Quite natural. Accept it.

First, every place of worship has its own set of rules. And a Hindu temple, all the more.

A Temple cannot be compared to the Church or Mosque (but it is done habitually). The Temple is not a place for mass congregation and a communal gathering. Thought many temples do witness heavy rush, the communion was always, and still is, very exclusive.

Second, the Hindu religion does not enjoin its observers to make it there every Sunday or Friday.

So if you cant comply with the rules set out by the temple, don’t go. No commandment forces you to. You can attain moksha even without setting foot inside any temple.

Third, a temple is really a very special place. And the Vadakkumnatha Shiva Temple, particularly so!
A temple is not some structure that could be rigged at any place of convenience. (Not that impromptu temples don’t keep popping up at all sort of places).

Ancient temples were built on principles of Vastu. They are set on hallowed place where the salubrious forces of nature intermingle.

Every temple has its set of rules on how poojas and rituals should be observed. This is done to enhance the positive energy field of the temple.

So if there are in place a set of rules followed from time immemorial, there is reason. Even if the reason is not know / understood / seems antiquated, today.

While the real issue here is the insolent and uncouth behaviour of the temple authorities towards Anilkumar and family, the underlying truth is the pitiable condition of Hindu temples in Kerala, financially speaking.

Why were the temple authorities at the temple so very pesky in trying to force out some money from the family?

Clearly they saw the incident as an opportunity for making some additional money. Perhaps not for personal gain.

On Anilkumar’s outrage, the manager even admitted this. He even denoted that some of the money was being tweaked - for buying the groceries which go into making the prasadam offered to worshippers.

Oh the ignominy of it all.

After the complaint made by Anil, the Government is obliged to take some “action”.

While rightfully, the action should be sanctioning of additional and adequate funds for the upkeep of the temple, it is pretty certain that the utmost that will be done will be the transfer of some “Devaswom Board” officials as punishment.

Perhaps a separate fund should be allotted so that if such an incident repeats, the necessary pooja-karmas can be done without financially taxing the offenders.

And then, the secularists / modernists shouldn’t be pooh-poohing traditions but the process and procedure by which it is being enforced. If you can’t really understand, don’t moralize.

After all, if the Hindu pundits were not so ‘backward’ in their behaviour at regular intervals, the jurnos would have been short of some loose change jangling in their jubba pockets right now.

1 comment:

josh said...

Hello Ajit,

Thanks for your response, albeit emotionally steamed.

The point is the relevance of blasphemy in the age of freethinking. At times, when I sit still and blank, things come floating on mind. In what mighty ways have we been fooling ourselves by our own perceptions!

Democracy, Freedom, God, Justice, Divinity, Humanity, Dewaswom, Journalism, Paradise, Satan, petty and blind have we turned ourselves into. Are we really as tiny as these matchboxes? Shan’t we clear from our senses the weeds of thoughts ourselves have grown in our minds?

Should the traditions, sensitivities, sentiments, rules of the yore, passion of one kind or the other, myths, fancies, legends, customs, and systems be allowed to crush the glory called life?

Have we who pride as the ‘thinking’ animals really sit to think or rethink on all the humbug handed over to us by the past? Can a majority of human fancies including ‘religion’ and ‘reason’ stand the test of a greater dissection by a freer mind?

Should we be to the gods and liberators what flies are to the wanton boys? When do we stop fooling ourselves? When shall we step out of the Matrix, take the red pill?

I’m glad that piece of column stirred in you something that surged up your wrath. But may that not lead you to the black hole of blindness. There’s a pasture of sheer brilliance beyond our baggage of thoughts. Let’s strive to pull free, to run, to flee this madness.

Run Ajit, run.