JSHARMA at Hermes.GC.PeachNet.EDU
Sun Dec 3 12:06:51 UTC 1995
Vidya wrote :
Regarding the recent discussion on Sitaram Goel and Koenrad Elst's
Both books seem to me to be no more than propaganda material. While
Goel may only have compiled the accounts of Muslim scribes, there is
an underlying fundamentalist propaganda mentality in his book.
While I agree that there is no real discussion of Muslim fundamentalism
in the subcontinent, I doubt this list is an appropriate place to do it.
It is difficult for people whose academic interests lie in dharmakIrtI
or sadASiva brahmendra to be enthusiastic about discussing the perils of
That does not mean that Hindu fundamentalism should not be discussed,
just because Muslim fundamentalism is not.
In general in a debate, the basic rule goes, speak for yourself. The
term Indology encompasses the study of classical, medevial and modern
India. Discussions in these areas have pretty much been the norm on
this astute and genteel group. Indian culture consists of more than
the Sanskritic element, and if only Hindu fundamentalism is to be
discussed, then by default it is the cause of all what ails the sub-
continent. If the phenomena of fundamentalism is to examined, the
analysis can only be complete if all components are examined. This is
a very elementary demand of good scholarship.
Vidya wrote :
One does not have to rake up medieval history to find the
psychological roots of religious fundamentalism in India. Partition
took place just fifty years ago. It is easy to pretend that India is
"secular" while Pakistan is not. Secularism as an ideal has always
been something that was imposed from up above, rather than something
that came from within. Our fifty years of existence as indepedent
India are more responsible for today's expressions of fundamentalism
than the wrongs of a few centuris ago.
It is impossible to analyse happenings on the sub-continent outside
of a historical framework. The basic underlying dynamics of the
Hindu-Muslim conflict still drive the polity of the sub-continent and
there are deep historical roots to the phenomenon. A discussion of
all aspects of horrible and continuing conflict seems to me to be the
only way to begin to illuminate a way to possible solutions. One
sided discussions end up having no more than propaganda value
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