I distinctly remember a discussion with one of my teams about removing a Ganesha statue from the office entrance about a decade back. I spoke eloquently about secularism and how we need to respect all faiths. Nothing much has changed from then and now except that I have become a Sanghi Hindu as against a Secular Hindu. I still respect all faiths because its an individual’s choice …. but I am no longer enamoured by the fake secularism that is practised in India.
Gifts of this pseudo secularism are many but mainly our history has been distorted beyond imagination, the Hindu culture is mocked routinely and our social fabric is steadily weakened. The sooner we stop getting fooled, the better it is. Let me say it yet again – the only religion that is truly secular and accepts every different thought, faith or belief is Hinduism.
Hindus do need to wake up and smell Gaumutra to improve their immunity and to fight back the infection of the Abrahamic religions. Their agenda is very clear – its not Ganga-Jamuni Tehzeeb… its Ganga-Jamuni Tezaab, with the only intent of establishing the Caliphate in India.
The one group that has been and continues to be much maligned throughout independent India’s existence is the Sangh parivar and the Sanghis are the ones who really need to wake up and smell something stronger than Gaumutra. 😡 Every time there is a natural or man-made calamity, its the RSS that reaches out with help. Once the “victims” gain some strength, the same RSS workers will be killed and maligned. Totally ungrateful wretches :(:(.
Rahul Roushan has beautifully captured his journey from being a Congressi Hindu to becoming a Sanghi. Am sure several people have already told him this and I am the nth person to say it – its my journey that he has written about. From being a “secular” hep Indian, I have turned into a Sanghi, no thanks to RSS. All thanks go to the distortians, presstitutes, the CONgress and the (non)-minorities behaving as victims while having an ulterior anti-India agenda !
Some excerpts from the book that prove my points above –
“…the term secularism primarily refers to the policy of separation of the church and state. It advocates that the state shouldn’t care about or interfere in religious affairs; basically, religion is none of state’s business. However, the Indian state cares and interferes a lot in religious matters.”
“….Temple money and properties virtually becomes public assets while Waqf properties are reserved only for Muslims. At the core of it, the secular state of India discriminates against Hindus by assuming that they can never be disadvantaged.”
“…Currently, being secular means giving respect to all religions except Hinduism.”
“….And finally, when I mean Sanghi, unless otherwise explicitly mentioned that I am talking about members of the RSS, I would mostly be using this term to mean anyone who is seen or labelled as Sanghi by people who are ‘secular’ and ‘liberal’.”
“….Kerala in 1921. The incident is known as the Moplah massacre or the Malabar rebellion, where thousands of Hindus were killed or converted to Islam by armed gangs of Muslim ‘rebels’ who had sworn on the Holy Quran that they were ready to die for the Khilafat movement. A rebellion, ostensibly launched against the British, was practically a widespread massacre and subjugation of Hindus living in the Malabar area of Kerala. The leader overseeing this massacre was Ali Musliyar, who is often identified as a member of the Sufi order known as Qadiriyya.”
“…Recently, in April 2020, when two Hindu sadhus were lynched in Palghar in Maharashtra, a far- Left publication called The Wire declared that the sadhus, who belonged to an akhara that had been leading the participation in the Kumbh Mela for centuries, were not Hindus.”
“..The Left knows how to appear cool, even compassionate, while planning to burn down the world.”
“…canards about the two- nation theory, blaming it on the RSS or Veer Savarkar, conveniently ignoring what Sir Syed Ahmed said in 1876: ‘I am now convinced that the Hindus and the Muslims, as their religion and way of life was quite distinct from one another, could never become one nation.’ He had said these words almost 50 years before the RSS was formed and when V.D. Savarkar was not even born.“
“…..Ask yourself, do you know the name of even one Hindu who was burnt alive at Godhra, or any survivor who lived to tell the story about the carnage? Further, those killed at Godhra were not the only Hindu victims. You must have repeatedly heard about the Shah Alam relief camp that housed Muslim victims of the riots, but do you know that there was another relief camp at Kankariya, 34 not far away from the Shah Alam camp, which sheltered hundreds of Hindu victims who were targeted during the post- Godhra riots?”
“….For example, in August 2008, a Hindu leader Swami Lakshmanananda Saraswati was killed along with his four disciples in front of young children in Odisha, but that did not generate the kind of outrage as the killing of Graham Staines a few years earlier could.”
“….Further, Hinduphobia has been normalized and intellectualized to frightening levels, where a Hindu talking about any injustice against him is branded a bigot. Anything that celebrates or propagates Hinduism will increasingly be argued as being detrimental to creating ‘safe spaces’.”
“….The RSS is one of the oldest organizations in India and also selfless in many ways. It is an organization that has constantly tried to learn and adapt to changing times. And it is pretty resilient.”
I strongly recommend that all Indians read this book, even the Left Liberals and the HMVs. Those amongst you who truly love India will understand why the Hindus feel the way they do and why “cool” folks like me turned towards Modiji from being indifferent voters before 2014.
Thank You Rahul …. you make the name “Rahul” shine much like Rahul Dravid despite the efforts of one of your namesakes who is hell bent on running India to the ground. Thanks for writing this book and making it a memoir of so many of us Sanghis who never went to a Shakha and don’t plan to go to one either !
16 thoughts on “Book Review – Sanghi Who Never Went to a Shakha”
Loved reading the review….I also somewhere relate to how I saw myself transformed from being secular to a Sanghi…..also a tongue in cheek humour on Rahuls is literally delectable….
Thanks Amit. I am still the same egalitarian and totally open minded person as far as people following the faith of their choice is concerned. What has changed is that I have realised I am open minded because of my Hindu upbringing. So it makes me want to protect Hinduism at all costs because otherwise I lose this freedom. As a woman the only religion that allows me to exist “my way” is Hinduism. It’s an existential war for me 🤣🤣
This is perhaps the best blog I have ever read. I don’t know how much I take to the book but I do know that I loved the review enough to ensure that nothing can stop me from reading the book ASAP.
You have written this nicely mam.
Thanks Gopinath 🙏
Thanks Vichitra ❤️
This kind book must reach to youngsters and adults mam.
Mugals taken movies as a medium to program and simulate youngsters. It worked them well. Just 20-10% of Mugals converting 80% of hindu population day by day through movies.
We hindu have lot of books, so much of meaningful words, it has contents to nurture humanity, nature and all.
But we don’t have consumers. It doesn’t help to simulate youngsters.
We have to find ways to deliver our rich contents it can be easily consumed by youngsters.
So true Gopinath. Our children must learn about our true history and learn from our scriptures 👏👍
Bindu and Krishnan, I don’t know anything about Hinduism, but I love your spirit. I come from a monotheistic culture, but it’s a patriarchal system that has always offended me.
I bought a magazine today. It’s “The Sun,” published in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. There was a fascinating interview with a woman who is Roma, originally from Romania, who gives a brief history of the Roma through the centuries. She suggests they originated in India, but when they came to Europe around the time of the Crusades, they were mistaken for Egyptians, so were called “gypsies,” with a number of negative stereotypes accruing to their cultural identity.
On a parallel track, I have looked for the Osho book on astrology that you recommended, but couldn’t find it at my local Barnes & Noble, although the staff member who helped me checked several lists. B&N carries other Osho titles.
My point is that astrology’s symbolic language is non-judgmental and balanced, like the yin and yang of Chinese philosophy. Each contributes to and highlights the other. Monotheistic religion is dualistic, not pattern-based, but strongly judgmental: God vs. Satan, good vs. evil, high vs. low.
I believe you are saying that you and Hinduism are more tolerant of other belief systems than is Islam, with its monotheistic hierarchy, If so, I would agree with you. I love the variety of other cultures and other belief systems and would like to understand more. I’m limited (as so many others are) by language and ignorance of other traditions, so I’m grateful that you write in English so well.
Katharine, The Roma aka gypsies are originally from India. I do allude to Monotheism and the pluralistic outlook that Hinduism has. But I also allude to the divisive politics that has been played in India from the time we became a colony of the British. Our history has been distorted and consequently a whole generation of Indians assume (wrongly) that we have nothing to be proud of and our forefathers were wimps, whereas the truth is exactly the opposite :).
Hindu scriptures and our ancient Vedas and Puranas have answers for several spiritual questions besides a lot of science. But generations of Indians have no clue about these !!
Hinduism is about going inwards and getting enlightened …. its about divinity in everything – living and non-living. Its about Dharma which is living upto your potential. Its about Karma which makes you act responsibly taking ownership for the consequences.
The way things are going on around the world, it seems like we Hindus have a battle on our hands to preserve our way of life. Monotheistic religions like Christianity and Islam only focus on men, there is no place for women. There are no goddesses in Islam or Christianity whereas Hinduism is based on Shakti (the feminine power) and several times the male Ishwaras (Gods) take Shakti’s help to conquer Asuras (demons). It maybe symbolic but it clearly puts the woman on a pedestal.
As a Hindu woman who is unfettered by religion, I shudder to think of living under Islamic rule. I am trying to say all of the above in several of my blogs. :):) Sorry for the long winded answer.
I will try and post Osho’s entire talk on Astrology. Don’t know if its part of a particular book. All his books are compilations of his discourses on different mystics/topics/Q&A. Hope that helps.
I clicked in the “like” button, but if there had been a “love” button, I would have chosen that one.
Your response was perfectly stated and makes me appreciate Hinduism all the more. I knew of the female deity, Shakti, and that she stands more-or-less equally with Shiva (sp?),
You confirm my understanding that the feminine gets more respect in Hinduism than in the paternalistic religions. Also, you confirm what I read about the Roma.
Thanks for your offer to post what Osho says about astrology. Although astrology is not a religion, it represents a belief system which is non-judgmental and gives all the players–and not only human players, but animals and plants, too–equal status in our cosmic drama.
In a kindred vein, I’ve also been reading about the American “Indians”, or Native Americans. Their cultures were suppressed or decimated before anyone tried to understand them, but it seems their respect for Nature was an integral component of their belief systems, too. Apparently, their social structures were matriarchal, although each group had its own customs and traditions.
Thanks a lot Katharine. Shakti is believed to be the moving force. The meaning of Shakti is “power” or “life force”. Shakti is always feminine. We also have the yin-yang and ancient scriptures also speak of how Shiva and Mohini (Vishnu in the feminine form) had a child Ayyappa and he is celibate and revered even to this day. In fact a couple of years back you might have read a few blogs about Ayyappa because one of his temples was under threat.
We have both matrilineal and matriarchical societies in India. Patriarchy though is a problem across the world as men do find it difficult to deal with women as equals !! and for centuries money has been with men and consequently power. So Hindu scriptures deal with men and women and all genders (we have reference to LGBTQ) equally, men have changed stuff around to suit their agenda.
There has to be a massive reset but the developing situation in Afghanistan worries me because developed nations and UN seem to be ready to do business with a terrorist outfit 😢. Wonder what the world’s Karma is and how it impacts our lives. 🙂
Thanks Bindu and Krishnan,
There’s a saying here about patriarchy: “Mama’s baby, Daddy’s, maybe.” In other words, until genetic testing became available, no one could be sure who fathered any infant. Even Jesus, in Christian mythology, had unclear patronage.
So matriarchal lineage makes practical sense, but as you imply, men the world over can’t stand to be upstaged by women.
The situation in Afghanistan is closer to you than to me, but I can understand your fear. I do suspect that the extremists won’t be able to maintain what they have won. I’m already hearing about the system’s breaking down, with hunger and famine a significant threat to the Taliban’s power.
Although we are focused in our own times, I’ve been reading about how the area that is now Afghanistan has historically been a major thoroughfare between Europe, Egypt, and Asia, so what’s happening now is only a new chapter in an old story.
Nothing is ever finished, I’ve decided. It’s impossible to predict the next five minutes, much less to predict all possible sequelae from a significant event, such as this.
Bindu, I agree cent percent with your views on being a Sanghi who never went to a Shaka. Like you, I too, in my working days, quailed when I had to permit a Ayudha Pooja in the office. Now I know better.
Hahaha Ayudha Pooja and Saraswati Pooja are two things that Appa would ensure I participated in … I stopped doing them for a few years in between and then restarted on my own. I think these two poojas are specifically important because they make us respect the tools we work with. Thanks Sridhar. 🙏🏾
A lot of us made this transition from sickular Hindu to Internet Hindu….