SV: Rajaram's bull

Lars Martin Fosse lmfosse at ONLINE.NO
Fri Aug 4 10:15:08 UTC 2000

Luis Gonzalez-Reimann [SMTP:reimann at UCLINK4.BERKELEY.EDU] skrev 4. august
2000 01:27:
> 1. Foreigners (Muslim and British-colonialist).  Intellectually, however,
> this foreign "threat" comes mainly from the discipline of Indology,
> inasmuch as it does not align itself with some current nationalist ideas
> about indigenous aryanism and the definition of what is or is not

I think, in all fairness, that we have to throw a glance at Islam (and the
history of Christianity) here. The phenomena that we find in Hinduism these
days have clear parallels in Islam (both in South Asia and in the Middle
East). In fact, the quarrel with Western knowledge is as old there as in
India, although the conservative Muslims seem more obsessed with natural
science than the Hindus, who merely try to prove that it has its roots in
ancient Hindu scripture, whereas their conservative Islamic counterparts
simply want to banish Western science altogether. Conservative or
"nativist" forces in Islam (such as the Jamaat-i-Islami in Pakistan) have
made aggressive - and mostly successful attempts - to Islamicize science
teaching in Pakistani schools. It goes without saying that they also
rewrite history. Those of you who take an interest in this might want to
read the highly enlightening (and pretty scary) book by Pervez Hoodbhoy, a
Pakistani particle physicist. Look for "Islam and Science. Religious
Orthodoxy and the Battle for Rationality", Zed Books, London 1991, on

> 2. Indian Marxists.  In this case, note the negative connotation that the
> term "secular" acquires in many statements.

It should also be noted that the Hindutva crowd uses the term "Marxist"
manipulatively, so that it is made synonymous with secular. Obviously,
calling a self-professed Marxist a Marxist is fair, but the term is
extended to all sorts of people who simply use modern academic approaches.

Otherwise, it seems obvious that both traditional Hindus and Muslims are
fighting to protect the legitimacy of their religion and culture as it has
been traditionally handed down. In this respect, they are not much
different from the Christian clergy a few hundred years back who, as
Hoodbhoy points out, fought against anything scientific from Galileo to
lightening rods.

Best regards,

Lars Martin Fosse

Dr. art. Lars Martin Fosse
Haugerudvn. 76, Leil. 114,
0674 Oslo
Phone: +47 22 32 12 19
Fax 1:  +47 22 32 12 19
Fax 2:  +47 85 02 12 50 (InFax)
Email: lmfosse at

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