Vidyasankar Sundaresan vsundaresan at HOTMAIL.COM
Mon Oct 2 17:48:21 UTC 2000

> > It was Hindus who created both religions  - it was Hindus who
> > became followers of these religions - it was Hindus
>which implies that 'Hindus' are not the followers of a religion. Or are
>you talking about a religion within a religion? One must make up
>one's minds whether Hindus are a religious community or not, and
>then speak consistently.

Which takes one to a fundamental methodological problem, does it not? Under
the general description of "Hindu" as an inhabitant of the land east of the
Indus (especially true for 500-300 BC), Jains and Buddhists would be "Hindu"
in origin. That apart, does anyone have a consistent and comprehensive
statement of Hindu-ism as defining *a* religious community? If so, I would
very much like to know what it is.

Re: contemporary Jains associated with BJP, perhaps it would interest people
to know that many Swetambar Jain Acharyas are nowadays closely associated
with VHP. It might be a more north Indian phenomenon than south Indian, but
power equations in India are still largely decided by what happens in the

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