June 19, 2014
Jyeshtha Krushna Paksha Ashtami, Kaliyug Varsha 5116
- 1. False propaganda that ‘Conversions eliminate untouchability’
- 2. The reality is that individuals without self-esteem fall prey to conversions
- 3. After the husband converts to another religion, the wife converting to the same religion to maintain her chastity is certainly wrong as per scriptures
Inappropriate view: Conversions eliminate the untouchability of untouchables.
A. The belief that with conversions untouchables lose their untouchability is incorrect.
B. Author of Sansrutikosh, Pandit Mahadevshastri Joshi, has clearly said that ‘Muslims who have come to Bharat from outside consider themselves superior to the converted ones; similarly white Christians from the west do not treat the black Christian converts with equality’.
‘Muslims consider the Hindu converts (to Islam) to be of lower category than scheduled castes. They do not take food or water from them. If a Hindu belonging to a low caste converts to Islam, the treatment he receives is worse than that given to a scheduled caste. High class Muslims do not maintain any relationship with Muslims belonging to the Kulu, Jol and Koli communities.’
Criticism: The people of lower castes had to and still need to convert because of the atrocities inflicted upon them by the higher castes.
Refutation: ‘Hindus have converted to Christianity only because of enticement, avarice, delusion, force, harassment etc., and the sufferers have been from high as well as low castes. From people of Brahman families to those in the lowest sections of the society, conversions have taken place in all categories and still continue. Hence, saying that oppression by the superior casts is the cause for conversions is false propaganda. Irrespective of the class, any individual without self-esteem falls prey to conversions – this is the undisputed history.’ – Quarterly ‘Pradnyalok’
Self-esteem is the single factor why Chhatrapati Sambhaji Maharaj had to face countless atrocities, and in the process even gave up his life, but refused to convert to Islam.
3. After the husband converts to another religion, the wife converting to the same religion to maintain her chastity is certainly wrong as per scriptures
Inappropriate view: ‘Reverend Tilak, a Brahman converted to Christianity. To retain her status as one, His wife Lakshmibai, a chaste woman, renounced Sanatan Hindu Dharma and accepted Christianity. There is nothing wrong in her accepting her husband’s religion.
A. Sanatan Hindu Dharma considers such a husband (who has converted to another religion) as dead. Lakshmibai should have performed her duties towards a dead husband and should have accepted the status of a widow.
B. If by continuing to abide by her Dharma she were to spend her life in trying to bring back her husband (who had gone astray) into her Dharma by performing religious rituals such as atonement, then she would have become an icon of chastity for the Hindu society.
C. To lead a smooth worldly life, she too got converted and for this, she abandoned the Hindu Purusharthas (Four basic pursuits of life) and did not keep faith in Dharma.
Considering adharma to be Dharma is a great sin. Lakshmibai remained loyal to adharma, assuming that itself to be the Dharma. There were many women like Lakshmibai in those days. They too faced such crises; but as per scriptures, they considered their husband to be dead and began to lead lives of widows. On the other hand, Lakshmibai took adharma to be her Dharma and thereby fulfilled her desire of enjoying materialistic life.’ – Gurudev Dr. Kateswamiji