Lately, I’m seeing a spate of Malaysian Indian Hindus getting into angst whenever seeming attributes of Hinduism are seemingly tarnished by people of other races and religions.
I’d say those Hindus are as ignorant as the people who purportedly tarnish Hinduism.
And, the behavior of the people defending their religion and gods are anything but civil. Profanity is liberally employed as well as ad hominem when trying to get back at the detractors. Is that what Hinduism preaches – to resort to be profane and personally caustic to defend its cornerstone?
No, it doesn’t. Hinduism advocates ahimsa, non violence in both conduct and speech – ahimsa requires patience but these people don’t have an inch of the virtue. The Indians taught the world civilization but look at us now – quick to jump gun and only desecrate Hinduism but believe that we are protecting it, being totally oblivious to the nature of Hinduism and dharma, which is present in all religions, pioneered and engineered by Hinduism in time memorial.
Hinduism is the only religion that doesn’t proselytize. Hinduism was present in an indigenous form in many parts of the world, including the Malay archipelago and it exists today in Bali. Yes, Malays were Hindus and Buddhists and were also devout in animism prior to Islam’s arrival in South East Asia. Islam was brought to south east Asia by Indian Muslim merchants alongside with Chinese Muslim and Arab traders and merchants.
Malay language is dominant of Sanskrit and Tamil loanwords and many Malay customs are derived from Hindu Indian customs.
Recently, swimsuits bearing the image of the Hindu goddess of prosperity, Lakshmi, caused an uproar in the Hindu community here – every Hindu Tom, Dick and Harry showered cuss words on the designer, showing their professed sanctimony when they are only blindly angry. The concept of God in Hinduism is Aum Karam, the Supreme Truth and Supreme God which is formless and has no gender whatsoever. The concept of the supreme godhead is said to be beyond human comprehension so God assumes numerous forms, in the manifestations of 333 million gods, both male and female and manifest in anthropomorphic shapes, having human emotions like anger, lust, pride.. yes, the 7 sins of Christianity to guide devotees to the right track of attaining eternal bliss in death – the departing of the indestructible soul (the soul is merely an energy that cannot be reproduced and neither destroyed, note Albert Einstein’s theory) merging with the formless, gender less god, the ultimate goal of every Hindu, after which, no more rebirths. This merge state is called moksha or nirvana. Conquering the seven sins is vital in achieving moksha and anger is one of them, so by being angry and cursing away, you are just distancing yourself from the goal of a Hindu. The devotee who knows this won’t get agitated – it is just maya (the ephemeral and misguiding) and god sees it fit to be left non entertained. Prahalada never ceased from being Lord Vishnu’s ardent devotee and kept calm even though his father, King Hiranyakashipu openly ridiculed Lord Vishnu, telling his subjects and his son to worship him instead, claiming himself as God but Prahlada’s steadfast worship saved him from death sentences his father meted out on him for praying to Vishnu but the Lord made Prahlada cheat death – the Lord protected Prahlada and continued to slay Hiranyakashipu in the Narasimman form. This is something Hindus should follow through – have quiet bhakthi, (obeisance) not loud fanaticism.
And then the claim that atheists are bad news and I had heard some Hindus telling that atheists should keep the lack of faith to themselves and not be overt with their atheism. As a matter of fact, Hinduism accepts atheism (Buddha was an atheist) because, rather than religion, Hinduism is a way of life, covering human aspects from health (Ayurveda) to sex. Sex is sacred in Hinduism and a Hindu sage wrote Kamasutra; he is known as Vatsyayana. There are half naked women idols in Hindu temples and in ancient India, the women were indeed scantily clad. It was to make men control their sexual urges. And, the Shiva linga is in phallic form; linga is the Sanskrit word for penis and you can read about it in Shiva Tantra. Hindu cults and fake gurus are the ones which is pernicious because of their self serving, fanatic and misleading ways, not atheists.
Still, some Hindus feel like it’s an insult to have Hindu deities drawn in anime fashion; the concern and agitation are needless because in inception itself, the concept of god in Hinduism is formless and god assumes various forms, both earthly and unearthly, in order for the devotees to get a grasp of the core of Hinduism. Like how a lump of turmeric paste and a tuft of wheat grass stuck on top of the lump symbolizes Lord Ganesha, the Hindu elephant headed god who clears obstacles, and the first god to be prayed to, it is also the same with Hindu gods drawn in creative ways like in the Immortals of Meluha and Ramayan 3392 – it would make manga loving generation driven to read or watch the epics of Hinduism. The employment of tech and creativity to deliver a religious message, by all means, is completely harmless, rather, beneficial and overreaching.
Seek and you will learn – The Bhagavad Gita. Time to practice what you’ve learned. Anbe Sivam. Love is God.