Hindustan - A foreigner's view


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jake3d   
Member since: Sep 03
Posts: 2962
Location: Montreal

Post ID: #PID Posted on: 12-02-05 19:15:29

Quote:
Orginally posted by mercury6

E.g. The Malabar and konkan coast had settlements of Arabs who were essentially traders. they traded in spcies and pepper, among other things. with Europe. these Arabs settled permanently int he coastal regions of west and the south from the 8th and 9th cent AD. they were welcomed , given land and left free to pratice their religion. the present day mappilas or Malabar muslims are descendants of these settlers. so are the Navayats who have emerged from those setlled amid the Jaina communities of konkan. (From EarlyIndia by Romila Thapar p 332).




Thats really interesting info! Thanks.

Some more info. Syrian Christians from kerala claim to be converted by st thomas (52 AD) of the apostles.
http://www.indianembassy.org/new/NewDelhiPressFile/kerala_christianity.html

In effect, these people were converted around the time the Romans were nailing Christians to the cross(st Paul and st James were executed in 62 AD, st Peter was crucified in 64 AD). Its Ironic that the same Rome now hosts the vatican.
http://www.scaruffi.com/politics/christia.html

"Christianity came to India early, several centuries before it reached Europe. Today's Syrian Christians in Kerala claim to have been converted by St. Thomas and thus to follow the earliest traditions of the Apostolic Church in India. The saint is believed to have landed at Kodungallur in 52 AD and converted a few Namboodiri or Brahmin families there. As St. Thomas came from Syria, they are known as Syrian Christians."
http://www.indianmirror.com/religions/reli6.html

Some myths:
1) Jesus was white:
According to western artists and Mel Gibson...yes. However, Jesus was most certainly a 'man of color' :)

2) Pope is the head of Christians.
Dont tell some christians about this :)
Pope is infact the head of the catholic church and many Christians do not accept the authority of the pope. Many Christians claim that catholicism is akin to a cult of idol worshippers and the pope is its head.BTW: only 26% of the US is catholic http://www.adherents.com/largecom/com_romcath.html


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V PANDIT   
Member since: Dec 04
Posts: 31
Location: Montreal

Post ID: #PID Posted on: 13-02-05 00:27:51


Hi Esteemed Members,

Good evening.

It is rather strange that none has thus far expressed even a comment of sympathy on the two issues of violation of rights of Groups of People in two different parts of India. Is it not a sad state of affairs that people get displaced in their own country and not one amongst the citizenry thinks of them even when discussions are going on? Rather everyone can conveniently make fun of the arguments……it is easy is it not? Instead of facts and principles, make fun of the person presenting an argument so that the argument looses its efficacy.

Well, Crenshaw what are you upset about? We are discussing issues which are linked to the very nature of tomorrow of India. Your getting angry does not deter me from my making my point of view. You can silence me Crenshaw….. if you so choose to…..by eliminating me.

Let me begin first by talking again of Census. Well, Crenshaw, you should know this much that the controversy I was referring to was connected to Muslim growth rate and not Christians. It was in the news couple of months ago. You can get enough links to the stories if you do the search. My point was if the figures can be thus manipulated by the powers that be, then can these census figures be relied upon? I purposely did not give


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vpan


V PANDIT   
Member since: Dec 04
Posts: 31
Location: Montreal

Post ID: #PID Posted on: 13-02-05 00:29:25


Hi Esteemed Members,

Good evening.

It is rather strange that none has thus far expressed even a comment of sympathy on the two issues of violation of rights of Groups of People in two different parts of India. Is it not a sad state of affairs that people get displaced in their own country and not one amongst the citizenry thinks of them even when discussions are going on? Rather everyone can conveniently make fun of the arguments……it is easy is it not? Instead of facts and principles, make fun of the person presenting an argument so that the argument looses its efficacy.

Well, Crenshaw what are you upset about? We are discussing issues which are linked to the very nature of tomorrow of India. Your getting angry does not deter me from my making my point of view. You can silence me Crenshaw….. if you so choose to…..by eliminating me.

Let me begin first by talking again of Census. Well, Crenshaw, you should know this much that the controversy I was referring to was connected to Muslim growth rate and not Christians. It was in the news couple of months ago. You can get enough links to the stories if you do the search. My point was if the figures can be thus manipulated by the powers that be, then can these census figures be relied upon? I purposely did not give the indication as to which community I was talking about because ……………….. well let it be.

Second, the point of Muslim Moplahs and Syrian Christians in Kerala. Yes, we are very happy to have them. The fact remains that the Syrian Christians do not indulge in conversions ….and my regards to them for that. It is the neo-Christians and the missionary from beyond that worry me. Why?

Pagans. Well this was the term Church used for the people who had to be burned at stakes in the medieval ages. Then, the Spanish Conquistadors had the original inhabitants of the Latin America be declared heathens and Pagans. Armed with that decree the conquistadors ravaged much of the original Latin American population. They were searching for El Dorado ( there is a very good book about it by V S Naipaul and Marquez writes about it in all his stories.) Octovia Paz ( he was at one time the ambassador of Mexico in India) has penned a very moving poem about the same.

Provided below is a link to a poem which states what happened to Inca civilization after the conquistadors had received the sanction from Church.

http://www.poetry.com/Publications/display.asp?ID=P2711577&BN=999&PN=1

and the text of the poem is ( the link is not working)
Immortalizing Incas
Incas were burnt in a cave.
Conquistadors allowed the soot
to deposit on the walls.
History has become a vector.
It no longer is a silent spectator.

I scrap the walls and collect the soot.
Grind and mix it to turn it into ready-mix dye ;
With which I fill my pen
Allowing it to trace the events--
Earths' pregnancy and curve of cardiogram.
Incas can now be given a decent burial.
I will trace the story of each Eklavya and Yayati.
Vijay Sikandar
Copyright ©2005 Vijay Sikandar


How is it linked to India? Pagan. That is the word. Recently, the papal decree and newsletter have been talking of pagans in India and term India a Pagan country. I think a search of dictionary would indicate what the word means. And anyone who uses that term from India or Indians is definitely not my friend. Rather he is worse than even my known enemy in the neighbourhood. As Voltaire has stated, “God save me from my friends, I can take care of my enemies.”

Would the modern day liberators of our souls also try and do a modern day conquistador on India? It is this I am concerned about.

I wish to state here that India will have to take care of all its “such friends” who have the temerity to use that language for it. And if that makes me your enemy, because, Pope too uses those words, then so be it Crenshaw. I am ready to be burned at stakes if you so wish but you cannot take away my right to fight for “the Idea” ( Prof Sunil V Khilnani – google him and you will know about the idea ) of India.

Coming back to the point that I was making about the presence of Moplahs and Syrian Christians in India let me also add that there are also other minority groups like Zoroastrians and Jews ( the home grown religions of Buddhism, Jainism, and Sikhism are all part of Hindustan) who have come to India from time to time.

We all know the story about how the Parsis promised the King of Saurashtra that they would be like the sugar in the pot of milk, and instead of the addition spoiling the original content of the bowl, it would only sweeten the same. They have remained true to that word from the very beginning when they first settled in Saanjan ( South Gujarat, between Surat and Vapi)

Besides, it is a matter of great pride for me as an Indian that India is the only country in the world, from where Jews went to Israel but went back from that country to India for they found India to be much more their own country than the state of Israel.

And there is another significant comment I would like to make here. After 9/11, a cheeky reporter asked the Great Boxer Muhammad Ali, “ how you felt after knowing that your coreligionists had been responsible for the deaths of so many people?” His reply, “ How did you feel when you came to know about the Massacre of Jews in Auschwitz by your coreligionists?”

Yes, Crenshaw how do you feel about all the deaths that are linked to Conquistadors and other such events?

Or may be you will deny that any such thing happened. As you are trying to deny that conversions are taking place in India. And even if they are, then they are insignificant, as the others are trying to point.

Why I am talking about history? Those who forget history are condemned to repeat it. ( Was it Will Durant who said this?)

I began by talking about the history of subcontinent in a nutshell. I have shown how people have been driven away from the larger landmass even as other cultures expand into the subcontinent using the concept of lebensraum.

In our very lives, two groups of people have been abandoned by the state to their own fate and not one institution of the state has come forward to their rescue. Why is it so?

Couple this with the fact of another story.

During Narsimha Rao’s time, a police party raided Nadwa and Deoband seminaries after confirmed information that there were ISI agents in them. What happened? He had to apologise personally to the heads of these institutions for the action. Will similar things happen in future, and if past is any guide, will they be repeated? I am sure they will be.

Come to the present now. The series of posts began when Mr Jain posted an article by Francois Gautier on the website. There were people who began by saying that well, British rule was not all bad. And all those who expressed concerns have been termed as BJP conspirators.

In the case of Kanchi Matt, the way the things have been done, it has done more damage to the Institution of Hinduism than the onslaught of other things like conversions. It is insidious to say the least. Yes, probably Jayaendra Saraswathi is guilty. Punish him by any means.

But the way a very public trial by media has been carried out has the capacity to do more harm. By this, the Powers that be have, for once and all, destroyed the Institution. And the faith of the people in some very public institution when eroded, is more harmful. It creates a vacuum which can then be filled by …… I will leave the readers to guess this.

I think I have made my point.

May be the idea of India is important to me. That is why the concerns here.

To others who feel that this can be equated with the waves of globalization, that makes it possible for youngsters in cities to consume burgers and pizzas…well I have nothing to say to that. All I can say is that if some one can not express concern for the displacement of groups of people, then he looses all moral authority to discuss even these points.

When I spoke of McDonald, I was talking in terms of civilizational or cultural influence of the ideas ( Samuel P Huntington—clash of civilization) and not merely in terms of certain eating preferences.

I will call it quits for now.

With regards.

Vp


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vpan


crenshaw   
Member since: Sep 04
Posts: 914
Location: Toronto

Post ID: #PID Posted on: 13-02-05 02:34:49

Quote:
Orginally posted by V PANDIT
snip
Well, Crenshaw what are you upset about? We are discussing issues which are linked to the very nature of tomorrow of India. Your getting angry does not deter me from my making my point of view. You can silence me Crenshaw….. if you so choose to…..by eliminating me.



Who's upset? I asked you a very simple question - how does the Pope (and Mother Teresa) spread 'hatred'? That was the content of one of the links that you attached.

Quote:
Orginally posted by V PANDIT
Let me begin first by talking again of Census. Well, Crenshaw, you should know this much that the controversy I was referring to was connected to Muslim growth rate and not Christians. It was in the news couple of months ago. You can get enough links to the stories if you do the search. My point was if the figures can be thus manipulated by the powers that be, then can these census figures be relied upon? I purposely did not give the indication as to which community I was talking about because ……………….. well let it be.



.........and as I said before, if there was a genuine case in disputing the numbers, it would have been in the courts by now!

Quote:
Orginally posted by V PANDIT
Second, the point of Muslim Moplahs and Syrian Christians in Kerala. Yes, we are very happy to have them. The fact remains that the Syrian Christians do not indulge in conversions ….and my regards to them for that. It is the neo-Christians and the missionary from beyond that worry me. Why?



What is 'neo-Christians'? 'Missionaries from beyond' worry you.....are we talking Star Trek here?........is it the people or the position that worry you? ;) :D

Quote:
Orginally posted by V PANDIT
Pagans. Well this was the term Church used for the people who had to be burned at stakes in the medieval ages.

blah blah blah, snip

How is it linked to India? Pagan. That is the word. Recently, the papal decree and newsletter have been talking of pagans in India and term India a Pagan country. snip



The operative in that entire paragraph were the words 'medieval ages' - a totally different day and age. Haven't heard of people being burned at stakes in the 20th century (other than Hindu women being burned at their husband's funeral pyres........are you sure you haven't confused the two?)

Odd that you don't have a link to this so called papal decree and newletter that calls India a 'pagan' country. If there was one, I imagine you would have attached it.

Quote:
Orginally posted by V PANDIT
I wish to state here that India will have to take care of all its “such friends” who have the temerity to use that language for it. And if that makes me your enemy, because, Pope too uses those words, then so be it Crenshaw. I am ready to be burned at stakes if you so wish but you cannot take away my right to fight for “the Idea” ( Prof Sunil V Khilnani – google him and you will know about the idea ) of India.



Plain and simple, you are hallucinating!

I'd be very interested in seeing a link to anything that the Pope has said.......or are these some words invisible to the rest of us, other than you and your saffron knickered friends :D

Quote:
Orginally posted by V PANDIT
Besides, it is a matter of great pride for me as an Indian that India is the only country in the world, from where Jews went to Israel but went back from that country to India for they found India to be much more their own country than the state of Israel.



Sorry, you are mistaken about this. There is still a net outward migration of Jews from India to Israel. While some people may have returned, those would primarily be for economic and security reasons since the 2nd Intifida started.

Quote:
Orginally posted by V PANDIT
And there is another significant comment I would like to make here. After 9/11, a cheeky reporter asked the Great Boxer Muhammad Ali, “ how you felt after knowing that your coreligionists had been responsible for the deaths of so many people?” His reply, “ How did you feel when you came to know about the Massacre of Jews in Auschwitz by your coreligionists?”

Yes, Crenshaw how do you feel about all the deaths that are linked to Conquistadors and other such events?



Great, and you can feel sorry about all the killings carried out by your co-religionists - Hindu kings of medieval ages........and we can all feel sorry for all the killings that have occured since time immemorial!

Seems like that makes you happy! :D

Quote:
Orginally posted by V PANDIT
Or may be you will deny that any such thing happened. As you are trying to deny that conversions are taking place in India. And even if they are, then they are insignificant, as the others are trying to point.



No one 'denies' that conversions are taking place. As long as they are of people's free will, I don't see why there should be objections to that.

And yes, the numbers are indeed insignificant, which is evidenced by the census numbers.....but of course you don't accept those census numbers since you want to continue hallucinating about medieval times.

Quote:
Orginally posted by V PANDIT
Why I am talking about history?



Cause apparently you have nothing better to do other than hallucinate about medieval times, and dream up non-existent quotes by the Pope!

Quote:
Orginally posted by V PANDIT
I think I have made my point.



What point? :D

Quote:
Orginally posted by V PANDIT
May be the idea of India is important to me. That is why the concerns here.



But your locations says Montreal!........Gee man, you should rush back now, after all your 'co-religionists' are in danger of being 'burned at the stake' if you don't 'enlighten' them with your bullshit.

Quote:
Orginally posted by V PANDIT
To others who feel that this can be equated with the waves of globalization, that makes it possible for youngsters in cities to consume burgers and pizzas…blah, blah, blah, snip



In your first post, you said that the west was trying to create 'Christian beachheads', now you talk about the impact of globalization.

Is globalization occuring without the creation of Christian beachheads? In other words, people are accepting ideas and technology without converting to Christianity? That would seem to contradict your earlier post, where you suggested that the entire aim of conversions was to create a population in India that would be more accepting of western ideas!

Quote:
Orginally posted by V PANDIT
I will call it quits for now.



Go on, hallucinate some more, I'm sure you'll have your saffron knickers back on tomorrow and we'll hear from you again!:D

BTW, I'd really like to see where the Pope specifically called India a 'pagan country', feel free to post a link!



jake3d   
Member since: Sep 03
Posts: 2962
Location: Montreal

Post ID: #PID Posted on: 13-02-05 12:33:53

Quote:
Orginally posted by V PANDIT

Second, the point of Muslim Moplahs and Syrian Christians in Kerala. Yes, we are very happy to have them.



Oh, thank you for 'having me' since I am one of those Syrian Christians. That confirmation was what I was looking for to feel secure about my Indian roots :D
Anyways:
The conversions of today are quite a bit different from those conquistadores OR crusaders. I think you are missing that point(as crenshaw has pointed out...'medieval' means that).
BTW: note that the current pope had the humility to apologise for the churches many 'sins' through the ages, inspite of the fact that those were different times.

The missionaries are not exactly marching in with the spanish queens army like the conquistadors did. The difference now is that 'Free will' is the notable point here.

Like I(and plenty before) said...let ideologies be replaced by superior ones. I personally believe that most religions(including Christianity) borrow *heavily* from what is in the vedas...including the 'revolutionary' idea of monotheism. There is nothing new in essence that the vedas do not say that the other religions do. The fact that hinduism is one religion that does not divide itself into believers and non believers is another ace up its sleeve. IMHO any religion that considers itself the only way to god...is standing on a very weak base. Hinduism does not do this. Maybe you can focus on all this and try to take the same to the masses and they are then less likely to convert even in insignificant numbers?

Ofcourse playing divisive politics is far more efficient. Doing so has been very lucrative for rightwingers in all parts of the world along with the rehashing of historic wrongs to form the vanguard of arguments. It is very easy for a reasonably intelligent soul to prove why their kind is the victim of some conspiracy. Can you please provide one rightwing/fanatic group(asian,european,arab, american or otherwise) that does not use this line of argument?

If anything, this(inspite of short term gains) is what will probably ultimately cause the fall of the 'India' that you claim to be so worried about. The same India that permitted the jews to settle in about 500-600 bc and form their own communities on its soil. If it does, that will be ok by me too... afterall, things do not operate on the basis of my knowledge of time.

p.s: moral authority is not for you or me to claim within the sphere of our measily knowledge and weaknesses. I leave that to who it belongs to.

I think i'll call it quits too...it was an informative thread though. Thanks to all.



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mercury6   
Member since: Jan 04
Posts: 2025
Location: State of Denial

Post ID: #PID Posted on: 13-02-05 13:01:28

Quote:
Orginally posted by V PANDIT


It is rather strange that none has thus far expressed even a comment of sympathy on the two issues of violation of rights of Groups of People in two different parts of India.




Which two issues?
Just say it. Otherwise It is anyones guess. At anytime, any community can come up with more than 2 issues which warrant sympathy.

Quote:

Second, the point of Muslim Moplahs and Syrian Christians in Kerala. Yes, we are very happy to have them. The fact remains that the Syrian Christians do not indulge in conversions ….and my regards to them for that. It is the neo-Christians and the missionary from beyond that worry me. Why?



The Arab settlers in western India were also mainly traders. They were not interested with acquiring political power or making large-scale conversions to Islam.

Who is "we"?

If you are an Atheist, why are you making religion the basis of your arguement? Why not condemn all right wing religious movements?

Quote:

Pagans. Well this was the term Church used for the people who had to be burned at stakes in the medieval ages.



Paganism has been there for ever.....before any of Christianity, Islam, Judaism existed. And they were referred to as such much before medieval times.

Are you making up facts as you go along?
(see remarks on Cholas, pallavas).

Quote:

When I spoke of McDonald, I was talking in terms of civilizational or cultural influence of the ideas ( Samuel P Huntington—clash of civilization) and not merely in terms of certain eating preferences.



I knew what you meant. I was just trying to add to it.

I agree with some your your points on globalization.
(which is also opposed by some sections of thw west as being hurtful to them too)
I agree that People like evangelicals while they might have very little influence dont go there without a reason. There has to be some good reason. The west is a land of businessmen and nobody does anything without having some motive. What it is is anyones guess.

So I would say Burgers no good = because it is bad food.
Conversions no good = because it solves nothing.

I would like to see missionaries who convert poor folks to Atheism.






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