Sunday, April 30, 2006

Questioning the myth of Missionary charity

"Even if Missionaries are converting people by wrong means, how does it matter. Will a hungry person care for food or religion? Why do Hindus cry foul at Missionaries when they are helping the people. So what if they ask the ppl to convert to Christianity in return?"

This is the most common argument you hear in any discussion about the activities of Christian Missionaries. I have already discussed the national and moral implication of conversions earlier. In this topic I will try to focus on myth of Missionary Charity.

As they say, one fact talks louder than thousand opinions. So I will try to give more of facts, figures and media references. Let the facts speak for themselves.

The problem in dealing this question is that the bias against Hindu society is soo institutionalized in this regard that hardly anyone even realizes it. So our original question can be divided into three parts:

1. State control of Hindu money
2. Direct/Indirect state support to Missionaries
3. Media bias towards Christian missionaries and against Hindu charities.

1. I don’t know about the law in all of the states, but I can talk about Andhra, Karnataka and Tamil Nadu. Here the state govt controls all the temples in that state and all the money is directly handled by the respective state govts. In states like AP there is also a separate ministry called endowments ministry for the same.

And the revenue from these temples is not a small amount by any means. Tirupathi temples gets an annual revenue of 20 crores by just selling the hair offered by devotees. (yea it is the same temple which Amitabh Bacchan visited recently and gave 8 crores ). The total annual income just from the tirupathi temple itself runs into hundreds of crores. If this does not awe you, here are some more statistics:

"annual revenue from offerings alone, as TTD chairman T Subbirami Reddy says, is expected to cross Rs 800 crore this year... On an average, the temple gets 10 kg of gold (almost all in the form of ornaments) in its hundials. At the current market price of Rs 578 per gram for 22 carat gold , it amounts to Rs 57.8 lakhs per day. And it has another eight tonnes of gold ornaments studded with stones, lying in bank lockers, the value of which has not really been estimated." (link)

The state govt diverts most of the money to other governmental activities. Just to give an idea of how HUGE is the money involved is in these things, let me produce the rough translation of a recent news article in a telugu newspaper:

The Govt of Andhra Pradesh has decided to sell 7000 acres of land belonging to various temples in AP. The govt expects an income of 20 thousand crores <:o> by selling these lands. The govt has also not ruled out that the money generated from this may be in future diverted to other projects. (news link for those who can read telugu)

If you are thinking this is too much... wait. This is just the first stage. The total property is much large.

Now I really don’t have much problem with state controlling these properties. After all, it’s the same for me whether Hindu money is used for some god or for the needy in my country.

But lets not forget one things… it is HINDU MONEY. Atleast give the due credit to the hindus. Forget about other temples, if we just use the money from tirupathi temple and give money for buying souls, we can easily have double the numbers what Missionaries are having now.

Which makes me feel that Hindus are just being penalized for being good and not using their money for doing soul business but rather allowing the use of its money for developmental activities. And this is soo institutionalized that the nehruvian socialists come to Hindus and give them lectures about Missionaries giving the needy some money, even if it is a business.

2. The state in the name of minority institutions directly/indirectly helps the Missionaries.

India’s constitution has certain provisions whereby minorities are exempt from certain requirements in running their own institutions. (ref this article). Thus if a minority guy wants to set up a minority institution, say a school, the rules are much relaxed for him. While a Hindu school does not have any freedom in the subjects and constitution of the school, a Minority institution has the freedom to include some religious subjects. They also in many cases get funding from Minority commission of India. As the following analysis on the state of Educational institutions in Kerala reveals:

The education scenario is one of the major sectors where the organised strength of the minorities in Kerala (where Christians and Muslims constitute around 19% and 25% respectively) is used in a covert manner. In this sector the majority (Hindu) community as well as the government altogether controls only 11.11 per cent, on the other hand the church controls 55.55 per cent and Muslim religious organisations 33.33 percent of the total institutions. At present the professional education sector of Kerala is somewhat under the full control of the minorities. About 12,000 engineering seats and 300 medicine seats are in the minority institutions and they are fully controlling the admissions. At present 60 per cent of the seats of the paramedical courses are controlled by the organised minority religious leadership. (link)

The same trend is seen in other sectors as well. Sometimes govt does not directly spend some money on a developmental activity, but instead does so through some NGOs. Last year AP govt under the able leadership of CM, YSR Reddy (who BTW is a Christian convert) decided to use some of the money from tirupathi for providing medical services. And he selects Madras Medical Mission for doing that!!! .... the money belongs to Hindus, the state gives it to Missionaries to use it for conversions!!!

There are lot of such instances. See for example the following pioneer article:

It has, for instance, been claimed that, in 1997, the Karnataka Government received a revenue of Rs 52.35 crore from 2,64,000 temples. Of this, Rs 17.33 crore was returned to the temples for maintenance; Rs 9.25 crore allocated for madarsa development and Rs 3 crore for church development. The balance Rs 22.77 crore was diverted towards Government programmes. The situation was much the same in 1998.

However, in 1999, it is alleged, the State collected Rs 65.35 crore in revenue; gave Rs 15 crore for temple maintenance; and diverted Rs 27 crore to madarsa development and Haj subsidy and Rs 8 crore for church development. No details were available about the use of the balance Rs 17.35 crore.

In 2000, the temples generated a revenue of Rs 69.96 crore, but received only Rs 13.75 crore for maintenance. The madarsa-Haj subsidy rose to Rs 35 crore. In 2001, temple revenue further rose to Rs 71.60 crore, while maintenance grants shrank to Rs 11.50 crore, and madarsa development funds rose to Rs 45 crore. Church development received Rs 10 crore. In 2002, the State received Rs 72 crore as revenue, returned Rs 10 crore for temple maintenance, and granted Rs 50 crore for madarsas and Rs 10 crore for churches.

Money belongs to Hindus and the credit goes to Missionaries for their noble act of soul business!!!

3. Why is that the moment one talks about charity, only some Christian nun helping some poor guy come into the ppls mind? There are LOT many Hindus who dedicated their whole life to serving others. But how many even know their names… what makes their service inferior to that done by Mother Theresa? They too dedicated their complete lives for serving others.

There are many Hindu organizations like Sri Ramakrishna Math, Art of living, Seva Bharati, Aurobindo Ashram, RSS, Swadhyay Parivar, Sarada Math, Shri Swaminarayan Sanstha, Mata Amritanandamayi Math, Vanavasi Kalyan Ashram, Ramachandra Mission, Gayatri Parivar, Chinmaya Mission, Divine Life Society……..involved in various kinds of service activities. Anyhow they just limit themselves to service, and not to soul-Business.

But again, their positive aspects of condition-less service and silent work without any we-did-this propaganda are made their weakness and commies tell Hindus how the Missionaries are better coz they are doing business in the name of religion!!!

I can only conclude that this whole crap of Missionaries at least helping a poor guy, and Hindus doing nothing, but only crying foul about Missionaries is baseless. Thanks to the "Nehruvian Socialism" and Missionaries, the whole thing is so institutionalized that most Hindus themselves don’t realize it and remain silent when such crap arguments of "people convert out of hunger" are offered. Its true that people convert due to hunger, but Missionaries are not doing any act of charity. They are just taking the Hindu money, and giving it to ppl fashioning it to be their own... ie., Hindus are converted by Missionaries by using the Hindu money.


Blogger Nithin.S said...

jai shri ram

very nice articles.. plz do visit my blog too..
we are all fighting for the same cause.. the Hindu CAuse.. let us all join toghether
VAnde MAtharam

10:50 PM  
Blogger hk said...

intelligent article and good analysis . Such objective analysis does not come in fucking secular press .We have complie all such instances and make people aware of it.

3:42 AM  
Blogger मनोरमा चाची said...

I am almost crying. It is much better to donate my money to some noble and small organization rather than putting it into the feet of Balaji at Tirupati. This way Balaji would be served better. Or even better own cars and buildings but not to donate money in glamorous temples.

6:21 AM  
Blogger Joyoti said...

We should donate our money to institutions like the Ramakrishna Mission and Bharat Seva Ashram because money given to them is not handed over to the governemnt. We as donors get income tax rebate and they as Institutions involved in charity work can use our hard earned money in their chrity work. In Mumbai the Ramakrishna Mission runs a proper hospital( with OT and ICU etc) on its premises and they run a number of reputed schools in West Bengal. I personally know some students who have studied in their schools and they are all model citizens, in public and at home.
Bharat Seva Ashram works for the cause of cancer patients including terminally ill ones. Anyone can go to them for financial and spiritual support in case they need it. Our money will support their causes and not get diverted to any non-Hindu organization.

8:24 PM  
Blogger me said...

Old post, I know, but...

Morals are inherently subjective, and one's subjective judgment about the actions of someone else who does not share the same subjective view of morality will be an inherently subjective judgment.

That's your first logical fallacy.

Your second is generalisations of qualities that are very weak.


10:05 AM  
Blogger hk said...

Good Object Analysis. It is the agenda of the press to keep in dark about the good work done by Hindu organizations. Press always considers christian organization as excellent and others as bad.So many Hindus end up donating to those orgs. I would like to add "Vivekananda Kendra",Kanyakumari to the list of Hindu orgs.

3:50 AM  
Blogger Aditya Bhaskar said...

really eye opening article..
I am really shocked to see how Hindus themselves destroying there culture by sheer ignorance.

2:06 AM  
Blogger propidad sbm said...

Thanks for the information you have provided. In present days, the demand for real estate properties has increased in Hyderabad and it is the best place for the investors to invest in real estate.
Real Estate in Hyderabad

11:53 PM  

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