We are degraded into a bunch of bigots. All the events that happened recently, point to our intolerance. Let us consider India as a big family, then how long do you think a family can persist with intolerant family members fighting each other. Why do you think India has this unique “Unity in Diversity”? . B’coz we, Indians used to respect others and their differences in views and perspectives, that is the reason why our history shows the adoption of outsiders as one of our own, who came here to conquer and get conquered by this country’s culture & people, thus becoming a part of India.
A little bit History
It begins with Indus valley civilisation, then came Aryan influence thus starting Vedic era. Many famed written manuscripts belong to this era, then came the era of social change in the form of Budha and Mahavira. This duo influenced Indian and even Asian conscience. India’s famous empires, Maurya empire, Rashtrkutas, Silahar etc are highly influenced by this duo. We got an abundance of valuable writings on philosophy, medicine, astronomy, and mathematics at this time. After that, major influence was made by Islamic sultanates and Mughals and then the British rule. It was a perfect and deserving mould to forge a country like India, such vast cultural mixing !
All these time India had undergone changes after changes, she witnessed the rise and fall of empires. Everyone left a mark on Indian conscience making us a cultural conglomerate. We were the first to set up a university, why ? b’coz we had the talents and resources and how did we achieved it?, interaction with other cultures gave us broad perspectives, it helped us to improve our ideas and views on everything thus evolving mentally and socially. And the most important thing was they were always open to new ideas and never showed bigotry. Even at the height of theistic beliefs there were atheistic and agnostic (denying the authority of Vedas not God) writings at the Vedic period (Bhudhism, Jainism, Cavarka (a sage)). At those period these type of views were classified as “Astik” and “Nastik” schools of philosophy. The point being, at such an ancient age, where going against Vedas means blasphemy, they show tolerance towards “Nastik” views and even included it in the main stream of philosophical studies b’coz they knew the values of new ideas and they respected it.
Again to Future
Recent issues on JNU about a book which taught versions of Ramayana, over Arundhati Roy’s opinion on Kashmir issue, now this issue all proclaiming to the world about our intolerant nature. Why religions have given this special status of “no to be said against”, it is not way you protect our secularism. Secularism prevails only if people shows tolerance, both religious and other kind. We lost many great souls because of our “intolerance” and ignorance, Socrates, Jesus Christ, Gandhiji are a few among them.
India doesn’t belong to Hindus or Muslims or any particular religious factions, she belongs to Indians. Our great forefathers taught us “Vasudhaiva Kudumbakam” (World is my family) and look at us now, we don’t even consider anyone but ourselves as family. We, Indians who talk high about the culture and heritage of our country doesn’t have a clue what it is. We have become so self centered that we can’t even take good criticism. We are living in a self centered world, where “I”(self) is the God and what “I” say is always right. Everything is all about “me” and “mine”. Some times it made me think that are we Indians in its real sense?
We have never heard of anyone fought over the issue of poverty and health in our country, why is that? is it not enough to get your blood boiled? or is it that you don’t care? You fight for the rights of Gods and their Religion, who clearly don’t need your help. We all know about the “Nazi book burning campaign”, they burnt all the books which didn’t correspond with Nazi ideology. Would you people back it? b’coz in a sense those books hurt the feelings of Nazis.
Government must be stern on such issues, it shouldn’t be spineless, shouldn’t bend under the pressure of religious persons. They should be much more concerned about people and their daily welfare rather than at the time of election.