Saturday, January 26, 2008

Indian Republic Day

Moved to Jagat Jindagi

5 comments:

anuradha said...

'Nowhere is he talking about saving the world or oppressed peoples, though it is assumed that Arjuna is on the side of righteousness'(Jagat)

'To deliver the pious (?) and to annihilate the miscreants (?), as well as to reestablish the principles of religion (?), I myself appear millenium after millenium' (Bhagavad-Gita)

I can't help but see a contradiction here. This verse can be considered as similar to arguments used by George Bush or Osama Bin Laden in their quest for democracy and sharia respectively.

The violent setting of the revelation of love (Bhagavad-Gita) still poses a problem for many, including me. Could you deal with this problem more extensively and accurately ?

Jagat said...

You got me there. Actually, I only said the demonizing part in the class, not the other about saving the world, etc.

This is precisely the question I was dealing with. I mostly refered to Gandhiji, who was able to apply the message of the Gita to ahimsa by interpreting the story allegorically, which is what most people do. I also refer to the Kathopanishad verse: Atmanam rathinam viddhi, etc., as the basis for such an interpretation.

I was trying to make the point that we do have, deeply within us, an acceptance of righteous violence. Even Gandhi who was pressed for a response to what he would do in a situation where his wife was being violated admitted that there was a place where active ingerence was legitimate.

Mostly I was warning of the dangers that this could be manipulated by clever propagandists, even influencing people who normally consider themselves peaceful and non-violent.

The Gita, I tried to say, is about accessing intuitive wisdom from within by various processes including commitment to duty, but duty itself, as the Eichmann trials showed, cannot be an entirely legitimate defense in all circumstances--at least not if you are on the losing side.

The ultimate point I guess I made was that the Gita, in order to make a point about decision making, has to show us that Arjuna will make the right decision and that God is truly behind that decision, so that in fact, there is black and white in real terms. Nevertheless, it does legitimately show the complexities of the situation to realistically portray the human condition as fraught with difficult possibilities that require higher guidance.

Although Arjuna is told to act principally out of duty, this is not the teaching of the Gita. It is simply recommended as the safest fallback position. Ultimately, surrendering to God's will (and here not even surrendering to the Guru's will can be an acceptable substitute), i.e., racking your brain and praying like hell (and even then you may not really know before you act), is what the Gita teaches.

I don't know whether the Gita can really be called a "revelation of love." Certainly, ethical problems are an subsection of love, as head in the cloud flower power love everyone benevolence often has to clash with situations that demand hard-headed realism.

The answer is that there are no clear answers. The safest position was nicely stated by Augustine, "Love and then do as you will." If you have purified your heart by directing it towards the ideal of love, then even when your decisions are apparently wrong, you will always be protected.

And, of course, I suppose that from the most transcendental perspective, there is no such thing as a "wrong" decision. There are only wrong attitudes.

Anonymous said...

"Sudhir was telling me about his RSS activities, which he conducted for more than five years in Sambalpur district in northwestern Orissa. They had to be jacks-of-all-trades: they would come into villages, sing nationalistic songs, teach Indian martial arts like stickfighting, teach yoga and Sanskrit. Even now, the “RSS boys” have kirtan on Saturday nights, and several amongst them play harmonium or tabla, including Sudhir. Some of them also specialized in speaking on Hindu texts like Bhagavata, Ramayana and Mahabharata. Their main purpose in all this is to expand the organization and create new branches for their brand of disciplined and selfless Indian nationalism. "

A boys club.

While the RSS are famous for staging protests against artists for painting alluring pictures of Hindu Goddesses, and destroying cinema halls that show films like "FIRE" by Deepa Mehta, (film which depicts, horrors of horrors, a MUTUAL sexual relationship between two sisters-in-law, drawn to each other due to husbandly neglect. Their view? That this was "against Hindu dharma" and their are no Hindu lesbians in India), they remain silent on serious issues like the outrage over this past New Year's Eve molestation case out of Juhu, Mumbai.

Where are all their values when two women get molested by a crowd of 75 on New Year's Eve on the streets of one of their cities?

Why are they not addressing women's issues in India?

Yes, RSS has a mahila branch. They are basically sati-savitri types in the sense that they are puppets of the men and carry the same outdated, chauvinistic views and wish to turn the time back on women's progress and independence in India.

Please ask your RSS friend about this.

Anonymous said...

Question:Why are they not addressing women's issues in India?
Answer: A boys club.

Indeed, the boys are not yet to make life any easier for the girls if they can help it. And helped they are, by tradition, in perpetration of atrocities against their fellow human beings.

India, as the caricature of everything human, is now expectedly following suit in practicing that most grotesque of disrespect to human beings, sexual assaults on women. A couple of days ago it was on the news how India has a reported 47 daily cases of rape. In India, 47 a day REPORTED realistically means that the silenced ones are obsiously increasing by the thousands. The so called protection of women highly boasted by that culture shows its real ugly colors. Ever encouraged and free of accountability, the boys are now reasoning, "why invest so much in grooming girls at a great cost when they can be had easily by force on the streets?" Face it India, your system of "values" actually means that a woman is "protected" much in the same way a pig is fattened and groomed for bacon. A woman is kept "pure", "inocent", under control, ultimately for the enjoyment of a man. And when she is no longer suitable for sex, she has no place whatsoever in your society, a sudden nonexistent entity that dilutes into water, as that famous film aptly showed. You dam right to be afraid of fire!

Revise your values, revise your religion, then, and only then, come and tell me here in the West that we are backwards perceivers of God and his values. We wear miniskirts and yes, we do want God, contrary to you who settles for Elvis impersonators gone horny.

I am my own protection. I am a mature woman, not young. I was assaulted by a boy not older than 21, in Govardhan, a year ago. This shows the extreme absurdity run amock in that culture. My reaction: I beat him until he bled. I only stopped because I felt sorry for a boy so young to be so degraded. I let him live and wished him well. But I am sad for his reality, and fear for his future.

Anonymous said...

"I am my own protection. I am a mature woman, not young. I was assaulted by a boy not older than 21, in Govardhan, a year ago. This shows the extreme absurdity run amock in that culture. My reaction: I beat him until he bled. I only stopped because I felt sorry for a boy so young to be so degraded. I let him live and wished him well. But I am sad for his reality, and fear for his future."

You go girl!

India NEEDS more women like you!

Check out;

http://blog.blanknoise.org/

These girls are confronting the problem head on.