Friday, August 19, 2005

Why conversions are Dangerous

Some concerns about conversions:

National: There are plenty of instances in the history where conscious efforts to change religious demography has led to destabilizing of the National integrity. The ‘Christian Missionary Activities Enquiry Committee, in MP’ headed by Niyogi states that "separatist tendency" has gripped the aboriginal [1]. This tendency is evident in the north-east with slogans like "Nagalim for Christ", and in Tripura etc with the church directly backing the rebels [2]

Society: In our great love for the goal, we often forget the fact that it is the cause that produces the effect; the effect cannot come by itself; and unless the causes are exact, proper, and powerful, the effect will not be produced. The goal is so enchanting that we do not pay attention to details. But whenever failure comes, if we analyze it critically, in ninety-nine per cent of cases we shall find that it was because we did not pay attention to the means. With the means all right, the end must come. If the means we choose are not correct, the end cannot be correct.

The aim here of us may be a ideal society, where there is no poverty, no crime, and based on morals and where material requirements are met. But sometimes we are so drawn to this that we feel this can somehow be archived, even by talking money and converting.

If a child is thought to tell lies by the parent for his own purpose, why won’t the child tell a lie to the father himself to get his own work done. He did not learn anything new, he just applied what you told him: ‘Money is more imp than morals’

Once ppl start believing that ppl who are exploiting the hunger of somebody is correct, what we will be left with in the society is not citizens, but opportunists who can do anything to get the money. Today he will convert for money, tomorrow he will kill for money. This is a dangerous trend. I find no difference between person talking money and converting and a person taking money and doing some unlawful act. (I am talking here of ppl who convert for money, and not out of conviction)

Hindu: The persons who convert out of Hinduism, are not just following a new faith, but in many instances, turn against their original religion. This is seen in the manner how Hindus are refugee in Kashmir or how the terrorist groups in North-east announce a ban [3] on celebrating the Hindu festivals every year. I guess that’s the reason why many Hindus feel that every man going out of the Hindu pale is not only a man less, but an enemy the more.

Some FAQs

Q: All religions are same, why then is conversion a problem?
A: The idea that all religions have truth in them is held by Hindus, but not by any others. So while a Hindu will respect the other for what his belief is, a Christian will not accept [4] that the Hindu may also be correct. So this issue is not just Hinduism vs. Christian Missionaries, but also between Universalism vs. religious dogmatism.

Q: People convert to escape caste trouble.
A: It is a myth propagated by the Christians that ppl convert to escape the caste suppression. Ambedkar while talking about conversions comments:

"But the fact remains that Christianity has not succeeded in dissolving the feeling of caste from among the converts to Christianity... there is no gainsaying the fact that caste governs the life of the Christians as it does the life of the Hindus. There are Brahmin Christians and Non-Brahmin Christians. Among Non-Brahmins Christians there are Maratha Christians, Mahar Christians, Mang Christians and Bhangi Christians. Similarly in South India there are Pariah Christians, Malla Christians and Madiga Christians. They would not intermarry, they would not inter-dine. They are as much caste ridden as the Hindus are" (Dr. B. R. Ambedkar, Selected Speeches and Writings, Volume V, Government of Maharastra, 1989, pp. 445-78, at 454-56.)

Why even go into 50years past. When Pope visited India last time, a group of Dalit Christians gave a letter to the Pope [5] , saying:

the visit... will have greater meaning and relevance if it brings New Hope and life to the Dalit Christians who continue to suffer oppression and exclusion for long and at the same time who form a big majority in the Christian population in India... the Dalit Christian Liberation Movement has been struggling to establish the human equality and dignity, equality of opportunities... in our catholic church in India and very particularly in the Tamil Nadu - Pondicherry regions... We the Dalit Christians are still left to protest this blatantly in human and unchristian situation with no responsible assurance and action from any quarters viz. the hierarchy, the congregations, the authorities and the institutions of our Catholic Church...

Even during his First visit to Indian in 1986, Dalit Christian leaders in Tamil Nadu and elsewhere tried hard to get an appointment to meet him... Several representations and pleas were made to the Bishops concerned. But it was purposely and vehemently prevented by the Bishops and authorities responsible for arranging his engagements. Since there were no Dalit Bishops or a Dalit Cardinal to speak for us we were easily prevented. It is an injustice to the Dalit Christians who form a big majority in the Church.

Caste is a social problem, and we are determined to end discrimination. But conversion does not provide any escape from this.

Q: People convert as they are poor, so how is it wrong?
A: It is a big assumption that all the conversions happen due to material benifits. Many conversions are also carried out by force in interior places.

If the conversions happen only by money, as some claim, then the North-East will not be the poorest, but the richest part of the country. Not just this single case. Africa, Phillepines etc all got converted to Christianity, but still are the poorest regions of the world.

So conversion does not really change the economic condition.

Let us just for arguments sake assume that all conversions do take place by money, it still does not prove the Christian Missionaries right. Placing conditions for help is not called service, but is called business, and using the others difficult condition to bully one to accept my business proposition is called exploitation.

Moreover, I am talking abt the Missionary who is exploiting the poor, and saying he is wrong, and you are showing me the poverty of the exploited (hindu) to tell that the exploiter (missionary) was correct !!! (read once more with emphasis on exploiter & exploited)

Q: Why Hindus do not do any charity, but cry foul at Missionaries
A: Interestingly, this question is asked mostly by Hindus only. Is it then to be seen as a symbol of Self-hatred by these half-Hindus, who just want the rights of being Hindu, but not the responsibilities?

It may be good if instead of seeing indulging in such self-abuse, if we see it as a reminder of our responsibilities as Hindus.

Having said that, it’s not true to say that Hindu organizations are not working. There are lots of people working silently [6].

There are many monks and volunteers who have severed throughout their lifetime fellow humans. But as they are Hindu, our media does not feel them good enough to give the coverage it gives to Mother Theresa. How many of you have even heard of the name Pandurang Shastri Athavale [7] who has done exceptional work in saurastra region or about Ekal Vidyalaya [8].

So we can see that inspite of many difficulties, Hindus ARE working. But the challenge is bigger, and so more people are required.

Some more indicators:

1. The Niyogi commission in its report on Missionories in India, concludes [1]:

27. We can, thus, safely conclude that the aim of accelerating the process of proselytization is the following:-

(1) to resist the progress of national unity in the colonial countries after their independence. That can be gathered, as pointed out in the New Statesman and Nation, dated November 26th, 1955, from the “rival” Russian policy of strengthening the nationalism of these countries.

(2) To emphasise the difference in the attitude towards the principle of coexistence between India and America. India desires peaceful co-existence whereas the policy of the World Council of Churches as expressed in the report of its “Commission on Christian social action” is to regard co-existence as amounting to mere appeasement which it does not favour in view of the ‘divisions existing particularly between the totalitarian powers and ‘Free Nations’ with diverse economic and political systems. The World Council of Churches recommend that the correct policy should be that of “Peaceful competition” with a sincere commitment to growing co-operation”. (1955 Blue Book Annual Report of the Evangelical and Reformed Church, page 114). Light is thrown on this idea of “Peaceful competition” in an article which describes the present contest as “competitive coexistence” (New York Times, November 1, 1954 quoted at p. 4, in Pamphlet “World Conquest Soon” by God’s kingdom). On the other hand Mr. Kaganovitch, made it clear in his speech on the anniversary of the Russian revolution that coexistence meant that the struggle between Communism and Democracy was to be waged by competition. (the New Statesman and Nation, November 26, 1955).

(3) To take advantage of the freedom accorded by the Constitution of India to the propagation of religion, and to create a Christian party in the Indian democracy on the lines of the Muslim League ultimately to make out a claim for a separate State, or at least to create “militant minority”

In short the situation seems to be that the Papacy representing the Catholic Church and the American Democracy are united in their frantic drive for gathering proselytes to Christianity to combat Communism: the former to extend its religions empire and the latter to obtain world leadership.

2. Christian terrorism: Interview with the Naga representative Isak Chishi Swu [9] :

The Nagas are represented by Isak Chishi Swu, chairman of the National Socialist Council of Nagalim who also claims the presidency of a region he hopes to see completely free of Indian rule within the next decade… It was clear after only a few minutes that Swu’s main preoccupation will be with creating a Christian state, which comes higher on his list of priorities than socialism, nationalism or even democracy.

Overflowing with evangelical zeal, Swu explained that Nagalim will send out 10,000 missionaries around the world when it achieves independence. “Our intention is that Nagalim is for Christ. We have proclaimed it. Nagalim is for Christ. God has got his plan for Nagalim,” he said. “We were evangelized by the American Baptist missionaries back in 1839, and we don’t have the adequate words to thank the American missionaries.”…

In a country where many feel this devil lurks in nonbelievers, it is not difficult to foresee that Nagalim will not be the world’s most liberal country after independence. It will certainly be against homosexuality, Swu explained, adding that his country strongly supports the actions of a U.S. state Supreme Court judge in Alabama who disobeyed the federal government by placing a monument of the 10 commandments inside a court building.

“We subscribe to the people who are trying to stand for the Lord. We subscribe to the idea that, in Alabama, the Christians will have to maintain their integrity and not succumb to the decision of the U.S. Supreme Court,” Swu said…

Despite Swu’s deeply engaging, charming and intelligent personality, this political leader is also proposing a state where only Christianity will be tolerated (he is in favor of Hindus returning to India), homosexuality will be banned, democracy will be unheard of, and government will be controlled solely by the will of God.




Blogger Harshavardhan said...

Cool who ever u r .just came across your blog ., I am an ex hindu ., I have got converted in to Buddhism & I feel conversion for dalits is necessary.You have quoted Ambedkar ., let me add up few words of mbedkar here too.
Ambedkar thought on religion with conversion
"I tell you, religion is for man and not man for religion. If you want to organize, consolidate and be successful in this world, change this religion, […] The religion that does not teach its followers to show humanity in dealing with its o-religionists is nothing but a display of a force. The religion that teaches its followers to suffer the touch of animals but not the touch of human beings is not a religion but a mockery. The religion that compels the ignorant to be ignorant and the poor to be poor is not a religion but a visitation!"----

Dr. B.R Ambedkar{MA 1915, PhD 1928 ,Dsc, LLD 1952 (hon.), Bar @ Law}


Source -

Ambedkar meant Conversion is necessary

10:24 PM  
Blogger Harshavardhan said...

more over don't forget 22 vows of ambedkar .,in which he sugested complete apostasy

10:26 PM  

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