Hindu dharma, is not a religion

Hindu dharma, is not a religion
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Hindu dharma, is not a religion

Highlights

It is extremely sad to see violent images of targeted attacks on Hindus in Bangladesh

It is extremely sad to see violent images of targeted attacks on Hindus in Bangladesh. It is even more painful to see Hindus being selectively targeted in Kashmir, to arouse fear in their own homeland. These attacks on Hindus by religious zealots highlights unquantifiable ignorance apart from unjustifiable hate.

Hindu is no religion. It is a Dharma. An ancient civilisational way-of-life. Hindu Dharma is not an 'ism'. The term Hinduism is a misnomer. There is sno reference to the term Hinduism beyond independent India before 75 years. There's only an ignorant reference of 'Hindu as a religion' in the past century and never before.

Hindu is no competition with Christianity, Islam or Judaism. In fact, Hindu has no singular identity, all those who lived in a specific geographical region in parts of West Asia, South Asia and South East Asia were identified as Hindus for thousands of years.

Historic timeline of Hindu civilisation:

Before 2000 BCE: The Indus Valley Civilisation.

♦1500–500 BCE: The Vedic Period.

♦ 500 BCE–500 CE: The Epic, Puranic and Classical Age.

♦ 500 CE–1500 CE: Medieval Period.

♦1500–1757 CE: Pre-Modern Period.

♦1757–1947 CE: British Period.

Hindu – the Sanathana Dharma, as it was referred for centuries until the ignorant branded it as a 'religion', is founded on unprecedented knowledge base of Vedas and Upanishads. This Gnana Dharma permeated the entire continent, as a vast power house of intellect and divine knowledge. The Indus valley civilisation of the past was preceded by an era of ultimate universal knowledge founded by Hindu Dharma.

Christianity as a religion evolved in the 1st century and Islam in the 7th century. Both the religions are Abrahamic and monotheistic in nature. They believe in one God and trust the universe is creation of that God, who they believe and worship. These are two largest religions of the world today. They have accomplished this expansion in about 15 centuries.

However, Hindu Dharma is neither Abrahamic nor monotheistic. Those who follow Hindu Dharma are free to pray anyone and anything, even sacred rocks, trees, water and earth. There is no one sacred book, no singular god, no singular symbol nor a singular or designated place of worship.

Hindu Dharma did not expand geographically through active preaching and conversions. In fact, it contracted over time and is today relegated to just a part of the Indian sub-continent. Hindu Dharma has been a fertile ground for new religions – such is the freedom and tolerance of the Hindu Dharma. Buddhism, Sikhism and Jainism took birth on the sacred land of Bharat. Can a 'religion' even imagine to give birth to another?

Religions like Islam, Christianity and Judaism have nothing much in common to Hindu Dharma. A sanathana dharma cannot be compared with a religion. Ignorant tend to hyphenate Hindu Dharma alongside other religions.

Religions have a specific religious framework of their own, and followers of these religions have a legitimate right to practice their religion in that prescribed framework.

Hindu Dharma doesn't have a singular religious framework. The Dharma is loosely based on traditions and best practices. Hindu Dharma is like a flowing river, it takes all shapes and evolves through its journey, which only culminates in the ocean of Moksha, the self-actualisation.

I share below few facts. I wish understanding of these facts can reduce at least some ongoing religious conflict inside and outside Bharat. I feel it should drive some commonsense and contain unwarranted vicious attacks on Hindus.

Hate has no place in Hindu Dharma

In a recent speech RSS Sarsangchalak Dr Mohan Bhagwat has stated with no hesitation that, those who hate other religions and indulge in violent attacks are not practitioners of Hindu Dharma. These individuals can't be considered Hindus. This statement reflects the true spirit of Hindu Dharma.

Those who have lowered the stature of Hindu Dharma from a grand ancient-way of life to a mere religion have done irreparable damage in the last 100 years. The consistent reference to Hindu as a religion by those who wished to pit Hindu Dharma against other religions for political gains, those who wished to divide the practitioners of Hindu Dharma into small fragments of caste and creed, have destroyed the divine spirit of Hindus and its universal knowledge reference.

Tolerance is the essence of Hindu Dharma. It is common sense to realise that tolerance and hate cannot co-exist. Those practicing Hindu Dharma have never attacked other kingdoms, groups and sects in thousands of years, unless their very geography, life and identity were threated or attacked.

Karma is the only reason for retaliation in Hindu historic time-line. There was never a pro-active attack even by Hindu emperors or kings historically. Territorial expansionism, Dharmic proliferation, ideological wars, civilisational attacks were never proactively pursued by Hindus.

Self-sabotage and hypocrisy

I am shocked at the utter neglect with which majority of Hindus, especially after Independence have disowned their sense of responsibility towards their own Dharma, with no conscious understanding and mindfulness.

The first Prime Minister of India Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru was singularly responsible for branding Hindu Dharma as a religion through the Hindu Code Act of 1952. According to me, it is by far the biggest political conspiracy in the history of modern India. However, not many Hindu voices opposed that unwarranted, unsolicited and extremely unsacred decision by the first government of Bharat to relegate a grand ancient dharma, a civilisational knowledge practice, and one of the oldest ways of life as a mere religion.

Former PM Nehru's electoral politics has not just lowered Hindu Dharma into a mere religion, but also turned Hindus against their own. Education of a colonial system has destroyed the natural emulation of a grand path towards self-actualisation. Most educated Hindus have forgotten their roots, divine knowledge base, cultural supremacy, civilisational edge and have surrendered timidly to the mass-customised, colonial education system and materialistic baits of western culture.

The slavery is relentless till date and unfortunately, most Hindus have been conditioned to defend the wrong and detest the right even now.

Conclusion

There is not a single reason to hate Hindus, either in India or anywhere in the world. The practitioners of Hindu Dharma have only added immense positive value to the world. Hindus across the world continue to add intrinsic and extrinsic value to the societies they live in. Hindus neither preach nor practice violence and hate. So, why hate and attack them for nothing?

Those practicing Hindu Dharma have a responsibility to understand the civilisational glory, core values, expansive ancient knowledge. Hindus must ensure this Hindu Sanathana Dharma is not referred to as a religion and equated with other religions. Many future conflicts can be averted with this accountable global pursuit.

(The author is the Chief Spokesperson of BJP and an organisational strategist)

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