Indian Heritage & Secularism

Nations allover world are known for their culture, civilization, books and philosophy they gave to world.It is endeavor of every nation to preserve and protect its heritage. India must be sole country in world where no attempt has been made in past or is being made now to preserve and propagate its heritage. Instead there is a systematic attempt to disown its past, thanks to western so called Indologists. In this attempt they are being helped by brain washed pseudo scholars from Indiawhose total knowledge of India is derived from reading western books. Most of these scholars have never read original scriptures which are in Sanskrit, a language which they don’t know. Their opinion on Indian scriptures is based on English translation of these books which has been done by western writers with ulterior motives.

After fall of Gupta Empire India went in to political turmoil. There ensued regional/factional fights which gave birth to numerous states. National spirit advocated and cherished by Chanakya was replaced by greed and selfishness. India as big nation lost its momentum and forgot too of its heritage. How could a warrior from Gazni with a few hundred soldiers plunder SomNathTemple not once but multiple times? Why was he not stopped by Indian rajas whooutnumbered him? Reason greed and no national spirit of these Rajas, yet we praise some of them even today. Why we eulogize these rajas today is mind boggling? Taking advantage of chaotic conditions Muslims followed by British came here and ruled us. They brought their ideology and culture and forced them on us. Result was that our heritage got marginalized. Lot of scriptures were destroyed. Even translation of some books was done with their own interpretations resulting in loss of wisdom of those books. Books started coming out with blessing of then rulers telling people that India had no glorious past, whatever is in India is due to foreigners. A THEORY of Aryan invasion was invented, who came from nowhere and settled in India. Even a time frame of various events after Aryan invasion was put in. Since there were still significant Indian classics namely Upanishads, Vedas, Puranas and other literary material available, a theory that these books were mythologies with no historicity was invented. Philosophy in these books was totally ignored. It is only after finds of MohanjoDaro were available that these indologists accepted that India had two civilizations in past, namely Indus Valley Civilization and Vedic Civilization. Now they started dating these books. Vedas were given date of 300BC, even though there is enough evidence of their antiquity. Some scholars date Vedas 3000BC.This literary bluff of Aryan invasion and marginalization of India’s literature worked very well, so much so that Indians started doubting own past heritage. British rulers incorporated English in educational system to the detriment of local language. Sanskrit, main language of Holy Scriptures was demonized. No educational institution was allowed to teach Sanskrit, and scriptures. Our culture and traditions were declared superstitions, our classics were labeled Myths with no authencity.Net result of this was that not only our past was marginalized but our classics were dumped. In west biblical literal interpretation is respected but literal interpretation of puranas is labeled fanatism. Indian social customs are being internationalized with help from some greedy Indians. There has been no south Asian movement in western universities despite having significant south Asian population. So much has been brain washing that many timesan Indian feels ashamed to call himself an Indian.

Hallmark of any good education is based on classics. Weststarts with study of ancient Greek and Semitic philosophy before moving to Roman and modern. But in India where old classics are being ignored, our students instead of learning about Vedas, Upanishads, Puranas and other literary material are asked to read western classics, Shakespeare instead of Kalidas, Roman and Greek civilizations. Not only are they deprived of vast wisdom which is stored in our classics but are being brain washed about western superiority. With no educational institution offering courses in Indian classics our youth go out to read about them. Scholars coming out of these institutions only do what their sponsors want them to do. This marginalization of our heritage in our educational institutions has led to further decay of our values and beliefs. Result is we have self-alienated cynical youth who run to west for degrees to get gainfully employed. There is no desire left in them to pursue/research old Indian classics as it will need hard work plus it will displease their mentors.

It was hoped in independent India this trend will stop but it has instead continued. Ignoring of heritage has become hallmark of India’s secularism. India’s marginalization of its past heritage in independent India is due to fact that our leaders were west educated. These leaders had no knowledge about Indian classics. They too judged India by its continued traditions which by this time had got distorted and at times irrelevant. They incorporated many western ideas in our constitution to the detriment of nation’s interests. India was declared a secular state but this secularism needs to be defined. It meant all religions in India could flourish, could propagate their ideology, and even get funds from government. But this was not true for Hinduism which is 75% of population. Propagating of Hindu philosophy/Vedic culture was declared to be against constitution. Indian intellectuals including journalists became cheer leaders of this constitutional declaration. Anyone who wrote against Indian classics, culture and traditions was honored. Anyone who spoke against this constitutional anomaly was branded fanatic. In India huge chunks of land are owned by church, donated to them by then British rulers. You can go to Haj on govt subsidy in India [anunislamic practice] but no subsidy for Mansorvaryatra. All religious places inIndia belonging to minorities are run by them but religious places belonging to Hindus are run by trusts with govt officials as its members. Gross indulgence in religious affairs of Hindus, permitted by constitution? Many a times you hear/read articles in India telling masses about property owned by temples but no such write up on churches/mosques. In USA, a democracy there is no interference by govt in church affairs. In India there is a separate personal law for Muslims but no such law exists in USA. NASA tells us they have found bridge [Setu] connecting India and SriLanka of ancient times. Indian govt instead of sending a team on fact finding mission files a affidavit in Indian court negating NASA.

A democracy is supposed to protect its people from any eventuality but not in India. When ethnic cleansing started in Kashmir Indian govt remained mute spectator to this human catastrophe---India’s secularism? Post independent India’s secularism suites its corrupt/communal leaders but not its Masses and nation.
*Dr. Makhan Lal Babu, Born and brought up in Kashmir, lived in Kashmir till his migration from valley in 1990. Retired as Professor and Head Neurosurgery from Institute of Medical sciences, Soura, Srinagar. Has published a lot of professional articles, both in national and international journals. His interests, besides medicine, are in Ancient history of Kashmir, Vedas and Ancient India. His focus is educating youth who are fast losing track of their glorious roots and culture.
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