Hinduism is shrinking. Some are now aware that Islam and Xianity are bound by their doctrine to destroy the last ”pagan” moorti poojaks ie the Hindu and convert all Hindus to their respective religions like they did with Arabs, Persians, European Pagans, Native Americans, Incas, Aztecs, Aborigines and of course Hindus of Afghanistan, Pakistan, Bangladesh and large chunks of India.
I think they have a good chance of success. You know why ? They know who they are.
They are very clear on who is a Xian and Muslim though they have hundreds of sects. They don’t distinguish on country, skin colour or ethnicity but welcome and convert all into their religions without compromising an inch on their religious beliefs. They were and still are able to unite diverse nationalities and ethnicities around a common religious identity with zero compromise and that is why they grew and grew and Hindus kept shrinking !
Hindus are still shrinking – even in their original lands. It is very simple – either you grow or you die out. Those working in business know this – businesses that don’t grow their sales die out eventually. And despite all our proclamations that Sanatan is eternal etc etc, we all know that the honest truth is that we are dying out. The only solution is growth. In India and outside India.
But how can we grow when we can’t even define who is a Hindu ?
Muslims, Christians Buddhists, Jews don’t struggle to define who they are but we do. We mix ethnicity and nationality to religious identity and not only confuse Indian Hindus but also reject Western, African, Asian and other Hindus who have become Hindu either by conversion or marriage. The West, for example is ripe for conversion to Hinduism. Values and attitudes of middle classes are becoming more dharmic. If there was an organised effort to bring them into Hinduism there would be great success. But how can we do that if we can’t even define who is a Hindu ?
A small example of the problems this confusion creates – It is not only practically stupid but also adharmic to reject a true follower of Sanatan Dharma just because they were not born Indian. How can a dharmic Hindu stop another Hindu following all rules (though white, black or yellow) from darshan of Bhagwan, mandirs ? Conversely it is also stupid, adharmic to allow Indian Muslims, Xians into temples.
We must explore and address this question of who is Hindu ? Here is my definition of Hindu :
- A Hindu is a follower of Sanatan Dharma by birth or by adopting/converting to Sanatan Dharm; and must not be follower or believer in any other religion
- Whether they have converted to Hinduism or were born into it they must have belief in Bhagwan, accept the Vedas as supreme, must not eat beef and accept that they are Hindu
It is as simple as this. Ethnicity , skin colour, nationality should not matter.
Shastras support this definition. Sri VKP Pillai in his 1911 lecture in Madras expounded the Shaiva Siddhanta and said this :
”Thus we see that all the followers of the Agamas, are Saivas and their religion Saivaism, irrespective of their nation or caste or birth and all are entitled to become such. It is in this broad sense, our Saint, Sivajnanayogin has sung.
“சிவனென்று மொழியைக்கொடிய சண்டாளன் செப்பிடில்
அவனுடனுறைக அவனுடன் கலந்து பேசுக,
அவனோடருகிருந் துண்ணுக என்னும்உவமையில்சுருதி”
If we don’t get this basic definition of who is Hindu right, how will we make policies for Hindus, how will we understand and address the many existential problems we face ? How will we resist and how will we grow ? Therefore we will inevitably fall. We simply cannot afford to get this basic wrong.
It’s our last chance.