Hindus should stick with tried and tested methods – Vijaya Rajiva

“Dr. Elst’s trajectory is different from ours. We should not be stampeded into abandoning what we see are the best strategies, some of which are rooted in our conviction that this Punya Bhumi will endure forever, despite the best efforts of the asuric forces. And meanwhile, yes we should continue to attack the injustices of the asuric forces, their barbaric customs, their past history of war and violence and their present attempts to control the world’s resources and economies, their white racism (under which the infamies of the brown sahibs and brown clergy are subsumed). That is not only our moral imperative, but it is also our defence against the asuric forces.” – Dr. Vijaya Rajiva 

In the recent controversy sparked by Dr. Koenraad Elst’s 2007 article and his subsequent rejoinder (in Bharata Bharati) to his critics only a few days ago, it has become clear that certain issues have come to the fore. Dr. Elst, as the present writer has remarked (see the articles in Bharata Bharati) is an intellectual and a non-Hindu at the same time. Why are these facts significant?

Dr. Koenraad ElstHis interest in the Hindu problem is motivated by his intellectualism (he used to be an academic), i.e. such intellectuals are rootless and tackle problems at random, and sometimes out of intellectual curiosity. There is also in him a high ethical sense, and so he is also genuinely concerned with the Dalit question (as he sees it) even when he tries to defend the Hindu caste system amongst non Hindus (white, brown, black, whichever colour!). Both his articles now printed in Bharata Bharathi reflect this situation. In his earnest discussions with the foreign asuric forces he does not seem to realise that they are actually laughing at him behind his back; they are pleased with his discomfiture, the subtext of their statements to him would be that he simply does not understand these pagan Hindus and why is he defending them? It is the caste system, stupid. Not because unequal societies have not existed since time immemorial but because that is the stick with which they can carry on beating Hindus and their ‘sympathisers’. That process has gone on and will go on, rest assured.

And the more he argues, the more he makes them feel good. If he were to inform himself of the many articles, books and blogs that are appearing today he would realise that Hindus are carrying on a certain battle couched in the terms that the asuric forces themselves have set. No matter. Hindus have to continue to play that game at one level. They cannot abandon that task. Nor can Elst. he is committed to it for ever and aye.

Secondly, while works such as Dr. Rakesh Bahadur’s  Equality and Inclusion : Progress and Development of Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes In Indpendent India (2010) are contexualised in the secular framework of the Indian Constitution, and while the HAF Report on Caste is a straightforward attempt to refute the notion that Hinduism condones Untouchability, there are others who finger point white racism (as well they should) and the valid point made by Srimathi Radha Rajan that the Western world carries on its dominance by using race to construct politics and vice versa, there are others who argue that the caste system was the basis of India’s economic prosperity etc. Recently,  George Augustine has given a comprehensive account of the caste system and it has been reprinted in Bharata Bharati.

Still others focus on the inherent strength of the Vedic Agamic tradition and the inability of the asuric forces to defeat that tradition in the past and its inability in the future to do so.

All these are tried and tested methods, and they will continue to work. It is a package deal, a multi-pronged approach. It is not smugness or anachronistic world views or anything of the sort,the wild charges that Dr. Elst in his frustration with the foreign asuric forces that he interacts with, has claimed. The present writer is serious in saying that this is also because he is a non-Hindu. We Hindus have forged various methods, some quite obvious, some subterranean, some a mix of both, to resist the encroachments of the asuric forces.

One of the Radhakrishnans, either Dr. Radhakrishnan himself or the son, once said (unfairly) that Dr. Elst is trying to carry on his Christian crusader’s battle against Islam on Indian soil. This is patently unjust and inaccurate. However, the present writer would urge him to continue his work, and not be unduly concerned with the Hindu dilemmas and their handling of the asuric forces. We can handle them, not to worry. And so can we handle the domestic social injustices.

Of course, in his task (such as it is) he is handicapped by not being a Hindu. As the present writer has pointed out earlier he cannot with a straight face claim that the Vedas are apaurusheya (not of human origin). Nor can he extol the many complicated rituals both of Veda and Agama as his heritage. This strength belongs to the Hindus and they and they alone can carry the battle for the defence of what they consider is the land of the Veda. Dr. Elst and other well-intentioned sympathisers can only provide auxiliary forces. Some of their efforts are successful, some only partially so. He can only say that the caste system has been a force for stability, as he does in his article printed in Bharata Bharati on the subject. He cannot say : it has been the practice in the land of the Veda, and so on and so forth.

It is therefore important for Hindus to realise once and for all that Dr. Elst’s trajectory is different from ours. We should not be stampeded into abandoning what we see are the best strategies, some of which are rooted in our conviction (not smugness, as he alleges) that this Punya Bhumi will endure forever, despite the best efforts of the asuric forces. And meanwhile, yes we should continue to attack the injustices of the asuric forces, their barbaric customs, their past history of war and violence and their present attempts to control the world’s resources and economies, their white racism (under which the infamies of the brown sahibs and brown clergy are subsumed). That is not only our moral imperative, but it is also our defence against the asuric forces.

And the generic Church can stand on its head but will not succeed in defeating the Veda and Agama. Above all, we should avoid being distracted from our own methods of struggle against the asuric forces.

» Dr. Vijaya Rajiva is a Political Philosopher who taught at a Canadian university.

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