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Thursday, 10 May, 2007

Pastor attacked, conversions a need ?

A pastor was recently beaten and terrorized very badly by some masked teenagers in Rajasthan, India. It is alleged that the youths belong to the Hindu outfit, V.H.P./ Bajrang Dal. This is no first incident where Christian missionaries have been targeted. The reasons generally cited are forceful conversions, offering them money on conversion, faking miracles, targeting etc. I have been thinking about penning my thoughts about this, that another incident occurred in Kolhapur, Maharashtra.

The questions that arise before me are :

Is the public loosing faith in the police and judicial system ?
Is the public even behind all these ?
Is minorities being targeted?
Is conversions really useful ?
What is the aim of Conversion ?
Why kill each other over religion ?

I am totally against such barbaric acts conducted by these self appointed guardians of the religion. Conversions occur in almost all religions. People must learn to be tolerant towards other religions. If conversion is carried on unlawful basis, inform the police. I am sure police will help in most cases, but unfortunately if they are not cooperating, call the Media, the powerful fourth estate. They are always looking around for sensational news. Use media to tell the world what is the ground situation.This will put pressure on the police and administration. How can u take the law into your own hands? The problem with this issue is that it is so sensitive that it can be misused by political parties and they have done so in the past. The result is Communal tensions and polarization of society. The political parties must act responsibly and prevent such acts by remaining within the framework of constitution. Instead of taking law into ones hands, they must assist the public and administration.

At the same time, what is the need for conversion? No religion asks for conversions. According to me it is the wrong interpretation of any religion. Religion must be used to guide the person towards the supreme truth. How can anyone offer, money and kind as bait for conversion ? Is it mere number of believers, that a religion should go after? I like listening to sermons and preaches of other religion. There is something to learn from every religion. After all, the aim of every religion is enlightenment and finding the aim of life. Every religion has some rituals and discipline which are necessary for its functioning. However, one mustn't get entangled in them as religion is a tool which enables us to entangle from the complex life cycle. Why cant one believe in Krishna, Allah or Christ at the same time? Even though approach is different, ultimate goal is same! In fact, do we understand our own religion deeply before converting otherwise it is simply futile!
Just like, if you stop drinking water from red mug and shift to yellow mug, the final goal of quenching thirst remains the same. Mug is immaterial!
This is just my view and is not aimed to hurt anybody or anyone's religious feelings. Please take it in the right spirit!

1 comment:

V Sreenivasan said...

You have stated two facts which are the premises of your article, i.e. Pastor attacked, conversions a need ?
Firstly : Conversions occur in almost all religions. With few exceptions, this is totally false. Have you ever come across people who have converted to Hinduism, or seen people trying to do the same? Surely there have been attempts to bring back people, specially tribal people who converted to Christianity or any other religion, by the Hindutva brigade but such attempts have always been reactionary.
Secondly: No religion asks for conversions.False. I don't know if the great founders of religions wanted it that way or not but without naming any let me tell you that in some cases it is the stated aim to bring everyone everywhere into the fold.
You seem to be oblivious to the harsh reality and thus you have ended up taking a simplistic view of the situation.
I will be happy to clarify my argument if you wish.
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