The south Asian bombs

nathalie Pernstich a9607945 at UNET.UNIVIE.AC.AT
Tue Jun 2 18:22:26 UTC 1998

".........But what amazed me was the almost total absence of any
antinuclear protest, like we've seen in France. Such demonstrations can
count as kind of a slight rehabilitation. But they didn't happen in mother

Just like you won't find a lot of concern for environmental pollution, gay
rights, deforestation, animal welfare etc in most developing nations.  All
these issues seem to belong in societies who 'have got it all' and can
spare that extra time, effort and cash to be 'aware'.  That's the thing
with money, you think of nothing else when you don't have it and of other
things when you do (that was Baldwin, I think).
As for the rehabilitating effects of demonstrations...I do find protest
important, but
a question like 'to buy or not to buy French wine' on an individual basis
is more of a conscience-calming one rather than real political activism.
Decisions are made on the level of government (mostly by elected govts.),
and rehabilitation has to
come from that level.  The protest against 'bombs' and 'tests' by other
governments generally appear slight, unconvincing or hypocritical.

 ".......Gandhi must be turning and tossing in his grave! I wonder if the
popularity of the RAmAyana and Bhagavad GItA are causing this
blindness......Rama and Arjuna are no executives, but fighters who use
mythical nuclearish weaponry to defie the bad guys. Maybe many Indians see
the atom bomb just as a new episode of one of their great epics. My
suggestion would be therefore to look at the question: 'in what way and to
what extend does Indian mythology influence Indian economics and

It isn't difficult to use the Bhagavad Gita to
rationalize anything.   A text like the BhG lends itself to that, and it
has been decontextualised often enough.  However, it does seem a little far
fetched to explain India's nuclear ambition in one historical period with
the same text that was once used to explain (and motivate) the satyagraha
movement.  Maybe that's a point in case for what you're suggesting, but it
looks more like politics shapes the myth and its interpretation, and not
the other way around.
The motivations that influence modern politics are much more mundane (even
when power is in the hands of 'religion'), and there's not much point in
shifting responsibilities into the realm of mythology.  I'd stick to the
criticism of politics and its makers, not to the criticism of myths.

Regards,  NP

regards  erik


  Erik Hoogcarspel           <    jehms at     ><
Boerhaaveln 99b     >
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Schiedam    >
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