Hindus…who are we?

First some pertinent observations.

Organizations at the head of a movement that are consistently accused of spearheading and encouraging “identity” politics amongst Hindus; do not call themselves Hindu. One is perhaps surprised to find that these organizations actively discourage any mention of the word Hindu but it’s a fact. What seems more acceptable to them are the secular and currently detached name of Bharata or the thoroughly alien, India. But let me come back to this soon enough.

Ancient Hindus of undivided Hindusthan; (i.e. the approximate proportions of Afghanistan, Pakistan, current Hindusthan, Bangladesh with Sri Lanka, Myanmar, Nepal, Bhutan as civilizational affiliates) have never given themselves over to “national” identification. This should not be confused with the name they gave to their homeland. There is evidence they had names for it – Aryavarta, Jambudwipe, Bharatavarsha, Bharatakhande. So what did our ancients call themselves when they went outside of their domain? Unfortunately, I have not been able to come across any evidence where they called themselves Bharati or Bharatiya although they may have adopted the term Arya for identification when in company of foreigners. However, the geographical extent of Aryavarta was never the same as that of Bharatavarsha.

Would it not be possible to imagine our ancestors calling themselves by the names of their Jati? Or Varna? To extrapolate, would it not have been possible for me to have identified myself as an Aravel Niyogi of the Vyshya Varna from the Bhumi of Bharatavarsha? Quite possible. In fact, if the many Jati based organizations amongst the so-called NRIs were taken into account; this would be the precise deduction. It is alright that we have included provincial and linguistic ethnicity too within the Jati framework. Look at the “Kannada Sanghas”. Larger point being such identification always was and is viewed positively by our people. These have not necessarily negated their feeling of belonging to their land of Bharatavarsha.

I think national identities are forged as a consequence of positive and negative reinforcements. Our national identity seems to have been forged as a result of the confluences of negative causes. Not all of it but substantially.

It is true that man needs other men in times of danger. In peace, he is happy to be left alone or in his small circle. This does not mean that in times of peace, man rejects other men but the circumstance doesn’t agitate him enough to “mobilize”. I view the historical progression of our people similarly. We have followed the same linear progression of increasing levels of national identity in direct proportion to the dangers our Samaja and Rashtra have faced. However, our current times are unique and an exception to this trend in national life. Today, when we see our Samaja faced with so many varieties of threats – external and internal – we also find ourselves confused about the nature and substance of our identity. This is particularly true of the great many of those who have realized that our Samaja and Rashtra are indeed under threat.

This problem is self-created.

If there is one name that identified us as a Nation or Rashtra, it is Hindu; if by nation we mean in its accompaniment of Bhumi. It matters little how this name came to be first used – whether there are native origins or if it was the result of the friendlier ancient Persians identifying people on the other side of the (S)Hindhu as Hindus; this name was consistently used by our enemies to target people of a distinct (from their own) religious life. It mattered naught to them if we were Vaishnavas or Vyshyas, Brahmanas or Bhikkus, Shudras or Kshatriyas or Jainas or the hundreds of Jatis our people constituted themselves into. All it mattered to these invaders was we were kaffirs and idolaters. Carriers of learning and experiences of jahiliyat and not the message of their Allah and his last Prophet. They seem to have borrowed the identifier “Hindu” from the Persians for convenience and stuck to it throughout.

It was hard perhaps and we resisted this “strange” name that malignant invaders thrust on us. We continued with our Jati identities; forming alliances with other Jatis to ward off the evil invader. However, the name stuck. We embraced its implications for our national life because the enemy was merciless with his egalitarian sword. We enthroned our Kshatriyas in its name and fought under its banner. This hardening of a common identity approximates the start of Islamic incursions and the levels of their successes inland.

This was the first time we adopted a National Identity for ourselves that also aligned our people irrespective of Jatis, cultures and traditions, with our common Bhumi. This was qualitatively so different from calling ourselves of such and such Jati or from such and such province. We were Hindus, all of us, from Hindusthan, the land of the Hindus. This was progression not merely national because it forged common experiences amongst Jatis and Janajatis; but also political because we started thinking of Hindu Rajya or Hindu State as protection for our diverse lives.

Such psychological strength and power cannot be experienced if we call ourselves something else. A Rose needs to be called a Rose. Names have meaning and historical associations behind them lend them that. This power we did not experience when we called our land Bharata or ourselves, in some slokas, Bharati Santatih or the children of Bharata. We never commonly identified ourselves irrespective of our varieties because we did not feel the need to. We were strong enough in our parts to fend off aggressors and aliens.

“India” or “Indian” has even less excuse existing in our midst. These names have neither the prestige of culture nor the power of historical circumstance. Any attachment to them is an artificial construct. It is thoroughly amusing to see even nationalists in paroxysms of ecstasy while speaking of “India” and its “Indic” traditions. Greeks they are! Not of this land! Resurrected by that other wily invader usurper, the Briton.

What is in a name?

The name Hindu is unmatched in its representation of our traditions and cultures and their connexion with our Bhumi. Its bond of blood and soil are stronger.

People often confuse my argument and say it conflicts with that other ancient name – Sanatana Dharma. Sanatana Dharma is the name of the transcendental teachings of the Vedas and our Rishis. A crucial part of our culture and religious life indeed. However, throughout history, such teaching has spread to other parts of our Bhumi from points of origination. Our Janajatis or tribes have found affinity with it and have lived with it. Not necessarily accepted all of it. So Sanatana Dharma is limited in its sweep of our people. Moreover, Sanatana Dharma is what we have called the teachings contained in the Vedas and related works. These are not representative of our Rashtriya Jeevana (National Life) as a whole although it may be the biggest cultural pillar. Its impress of historical experience is even more limited. The invaders who came never targeted “Sanatana Dharmis” per se. They targeted every one of the native who was unlike them in religion. They targeted Hindus in Hindusthan. Indeed they unknowingly helped forge the Hindu Rashtra politically.

Anyone can study and practice Sanatana Dharma. He or she need not be from this Bhumi. Can be a foreigner. But such will never possess our historical experiences. Will not be connected with this Bhumi in ways we are, the natives of this Bhumi.

Given this overview, one can see why our movements for national regeneration and resurgence are in such disarray.

Unless this unparalleled name for our Rashtra is brought into common use by our elite Brahmanas (intellectuals) and we consciously discard the use of “India and Indian” in place of Hindusthan and Hindu, we will continue to flounder.

This is the starting point.

– Namaste

I have used the following pieces to better articulate the issues involved. Read here and here .

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5 Responses

  1. >>>”the secular and currently detached name of Bharata…”

    Funny.

    >>>”…or the thoroughly alien, India”

    ‘Hindu’ and India, both are labels put by westerners, one is alien, another is acceptable! logic!

    >>>”what did our ancients call themselves when they went outside of their domain”

    A man is known by his actions.
    The classification based on location/family/political-cult(also called religion by westerners) is characteristic of mlechas.

    bharatiya identified themselves by their name and their occupation. Indians have been trading with far off countries since millenniums.

    Adi Shankaracharya travelled to all parts of the country. He was known as a brahmana. That was his behaviour characteristic.

    Location of birth or residence is never a proper criteria for identfication. It is so only to alpa buddhi mlechhas.

    >>>”It is alright that we have included provincial and linguistic ethnicity too within the Jati framework. Look at the “Kannada Sanghas”. Larger point being such identification always was and is viewed positively by our people”.

    The last sentence is not substantiable. It is only in the recent age that identification based on province and linguistics have been considered defining of people.
    Such tendency boxes in people into stereotypes, pigeonholes that are of artificial construct, not conveying reality, which could be that the person may be of criminal tendency, or virtuous, may be skilled in a particular profession, but not conveyed through the provincial or linguistic label that actually acts as a blanket preventing correct identification of the person.

    Such blanket labeling is characteristic of ignorant mlecchas who call people christian, muslim, people of Ummah, of Christendom, kafir, heathen, pagan, tribal, hindoo, infidel, coolie, negro… etc., based on flimsy identifications that do not convey dharmikata of the person or the abilities of the person.
    It is in an adharmik mleccha environment that such labeling, based on adharmik criteria, gain acceptance.

    >>>”I think national identities are forged as a consequence of positive and negative reinforcements”

    Even national identity is not the supreme identifier.
    It is dharma that is the supreme identifier.
    That is why arya was used at one stage, denoting a dharmik person.

    In bharatiya samskriti, the good of family is superior to that of the individual, that of community is superior to that of family, that of rashtra is superior to that of community, good of world is superior to that of the rashtra. It is always lokah samastah sukhino bhavantu…, sarvesham swastih bhavatu…, vasudhaiva kutumbakam, sarve bhavantu sukhinah…, etc.
    Good of atman is superior to that of world. That is why sanyasa is considered with respect. A sanyasi is given more respect than a raja.

    The supreme identifier, the supreme pursuit, the supreme criteria, are not defined by nation or national identity, not by community, not by family, etc.

    It is dharma and pursuit of dharmik actualisation of karma, that is the correct path, and it is that which is correct identifier.

    >>>”It is true that man needs other men in times of danger.”

    It is so only in the world of the mleccha ignorants.
    In bharatiya samskriti, each development experienced by a person is understood as necessary event for actualisation of karma. The atman is considered eternal, and beyond ‘danger’.
    Only ignorant selfish minded mlecchas that identify with their physical body and its immediate needs seek to use affiliations with other people for selfish gains.

    >>>”the circumstance doesn’t agitate him enough to “mobilize”.”

    It is never ‘circumstances’ that are criteria in Indic context. It is dharmikata that is. It is against adharmik acts that conscious bharateeya mobilize. It is to uphold dharma that they mobilize.

    Only selfish indoctrinated mlecchas are driven by ‘circumstances’.

    >>>”We have followed the same linear progression of increasing levels of national identity in direct proportion to the dangers our Samaja and Rashtra have faced.”

    The identification with nation in a physical sense, which is what it is nowadays, is an extrapolation of identification with individual physical body. To the selfish individual, his physical body defines him/her. Everything acquire significance in relation to that physical body. So immediate family is considered important after themselves. The community from which they derive sustenance from is given importance next. Likewise, nation assumes importance because a threat to it is perceived as threat to their own selfish life. This is the reason so-called ‘liberal’ creatures that are actually slaves of western empires, who draw sustenance from western paymasters, easily deride the country and act and speak in ways that are harmful to the nation; because, they identify their selfish interest with western systems. This is also the reason why a lot of people in India, like the brown sahibs and sepoys or past, are unperturbed even when their nation is in disarray. Such deracinated people find assurance in their paychecks from MNCs and are confident of re-locating to a western country in case situation in India becomes too dificult to their liking. Many others are seeking ways to get to such position themselves. The close to a millennium of mixing with mlecchas have taken a toll of the dharmik consciousness of people.
    It is this deracination that causes the state- “we also find ourselves confused about the nature and substance of our identity”, and leads to misconceptions such as – “If there is one name that identified us as a Nation or Rashtra, it is Hindu… ..we started thinking of Hindu Rajya or Hindu State as protection for our diverse lives.”

    Such attempts to dissolve reality into fabricated ‘identities’ that provide strength and power to the controllers is characteristic of mlecchas, who identify people based on puerile criteria and classify them as christian, muslim, kaffir, heathen, Ummah, Christendom, proletariat, bourgeoisie, modern, tribal, and the controllers- the clergy, Ulema, politburo, capital-owner-syndicate, then use the groups for selfish gains.

    >>>”Such psychological strength and power cannot be experienced if we call ourselves something else.”

    It is deracinated people who seek strength and power in name calling and generated frenzy.
    bharateeya find it in consciousness of dharma.

    >>>”The name Hindu is unmatched in its representation of our traditions and cultures and their connexion with our Bhumi. Its bond of blood and soil are stronger.”

    Imagination.

    >>>”Sanatana Dharma is limited in its sweep of our people.”

    The point about sanatana dharma not being defining of bharateeya samaj is correct.
    But the need for such ‘definitions’ arise only when dharmik consciousness wanes.

    ‘Definitions’ and ‘labels’ are inadequate substitutes for consciousness of dharma.

    >>>”The invaders who came never targeted “Sanatana Dharmis” per se. … They targeted Hindus in Hindusthan.”

    The ‘invaders’, the selfish western mlecchas, targetted not ony people of India, but across the world- Africans, Native Americans, Aboringes, Parsis, Asians, Animals, Plants, Environment, Earth…
    Targeting others for selfish gains is the characteristic of mlecchas.

    “Hindus in Hindusthan…they unknowingly helped forge the Hindu Rashtra politically” is triple use of western definition.

    Repeated use of western given name does not provide itself legitimacy. Such misconception arise when dharmik consciousness wanes.

    >>>”But such will never possess our historical experiences.”

    “Historical experiences” ? In Indian context, you may well have been part of Alexander’s army attacking Bharat in one of your previous birth. May well have been part of Ghazni’s looters that attacked Somnath, Babar’s sub-human marauders that attacked Ayodhya, may well have been a brown sahib or sepoy, may also have been a freedom fighter, or even Shivaji himself. May be all of the above in your previous births!

    Sri Krishna advises nishkama karma.

    False identification with history is not, upholding dharma is, what is recommended.

    >>>”…Will not be connected with this Bhumi in ways we are, the natives of this Bhumi.”

    bharatiya samskriti is also about transcending attachments.
    It is those who excessively identify with physical body that find attachments and connections and physical materials, land and definitions significant.
    Conscious bharateeya realize dharma.

    >>>”Unless this unparalleled name for our Rashtra is brought into common use by our elite Brahmanas (intellectuals) and we consciously discard the use of “India and Indian” in place of Hindusthan and Hindu, we will continue to flounder.”

    Those who refuse to swim, clutch at straws.

    Swim.

    Realize dharma.
    Live dharmikally.

    Realize yourself.

    Live bharatiya samskriti.

    namaste dhanyavaad

  2. Incognito, you seem a very angry person for someone so apparently detatched.

    Anger is an emotion caused by attachment. What are you attached to? Is it your own ideas of what is right and true vis a vis Dharma? Is it a sense of mission to lecture others upon their paths to realize Brahman? I don’t think I would be wrong that an Incognito with an army would be less different than the mleccha aggrandizers he claims to call out.

    You speak of Sanyasa being most respectful and yet forget Man has lesser duties first. Any Man thinking of Sanyasa before his time is a negligent coward. Are you one? I hope not.

    You embrace an odourless, tasteless name like “Indian” instead of Hindu which incubates our national memory. But why should you care? Nations are like transient physical bodies. They live and die every day!

  3. >>>”Sanyasa being most respectful”

    In bharatiya samskriti, individuals are respected as embodied atman.

    A person who takes care of a family is respected more than one who supports only himself.

    One who takes care of community welfare is given higher respect.

    One who takes care of welfare of everybody in the land is given more respect.

    One who understand the entire creation, entire world, one who realizes brahma, is given more deserving respect.

    It is mleccha way of thinking that considers that because bharatiya samskriti respects sanyasi, the grihsatha is looked down upon. It comes from a monotheistic mindset, that considers only one way as true way and engages in villifying the others. Such is not the characteristic of bharatiya samskriti.

    It is the prevalence of such monotheistic mindset in current society, brought about by indoctrination masquerading as education and reinforced by propaganda masquerading as media news, that an “either this or that” criteria is applied to sanyasi and grihastha.

    It is also the indoctrinated mleccha mindset that works in terms of ‘duties’, categorising them as ‘lesser and higher’. For e.g., it is considered duty of mleccha christians to propagate the monotheistic influence of church. Likewise, with islam, communism and capitalism. Lately, liberalism, secularism, and so on.

    >>>”..odourless, tasteless name like “Indian” instead of Hindu which incubates our national memory”

    Only if you consider yourself in terms of mleccha criteria.
    Both words are given by ignorant selfish mlecchas. There is no point in considering one as odourless and tasteless and another as incubating national memory.

    For the dharmi, it is dharma, nishkama karma and brahma, that are important criteria to base life upon.

    >>>”Nations are like transient physical bodies. They live and die every day”

    True.
    Like the physical body is taken care of, we also take care of the family, community, Nation, and the world to the extent necessary for sustenance of life, to the extent necessary for actualising purpose of life, actualisation of karma.

    But not consider any of those as whole and sole identity and purpose of life. Such misconstruction is the way of selfish mlecchas who then use such indoctrinated people to gain selfish objectives, as they do in the name of Umma, Christendom, Nation, Race, and so on.

    namaste

  4. I think the basic issue is that you refuse to respect something called “national memory” without which all talk of “Nation” becomes meaningless.

    That is the reason you see no difference between an odourless India and a fragrent Hindu. Little would you appreciate why fighting heroes of this nation took the title of Hindu this and that. Somehow these selfsame seem to have also missed the “Bharatiya” angle!

    I have not disrespected the Ashramas before Sanyasa. However, pointed out your lack of acknowledgement of the need to carry out one’s duties in consequence of entry into these Ashramas. Each one is as important as the other because these are time and space specific. Each one is deserving of similar respect.

    There is no need to think that Sanyasa is somehow more respectful than the others. There are many people who die before reaching Sanyasa or who can’t get there because they have lingering Grihasta responsibilities.

    Similarly, only when the Samaja and Rashtra are healthy is it wise and sensible to be speaking of higher things. One cannot reach Sanyasa by being negligent of Brahmacharya and Grihasta.

  5. >>>”I think the basic issue is that you refuse to respect something called “national memory””

    You may imagine up many things. Such as an identity of yourself defined by your physical body, your clan, your geographic region, etc., but such need not be considered substantial.
    If memory were respectable, a computer may stake claim to it.

    >>>”That is the reason you see no difference between an odourless India and a fragrent Hindu”

    according, imagining, attributes to words…
    is western tendency. They give labels and construct certain attributes to those labels.
    Ummah, God, Christendom, christian, muslim, kaffir…. so many labels. They imagine their reality based on those labels they construct.

    >>>”Little would you appreciate why fighting heroes of this nation took the title of Hindu this and that”

    Hindu this and that. Thats right. And their legacy is bright.

    >>>”Somehow these selfsame seem to have also missed the “Bharatiya” angle!”

    You knew them very well, personally. They divulged their heart’s secrets to you.
    Sure.

    >>>”However, pointed out your lack of acknowledgement of the need to carry out one’s duties in consequence of entry into these Ashramas.”

    “Duties done and not done, as well as pairs of opposites – when do they cease and for whom ?”
    – Ashtavakra Samhita I.X.I

    >>>”Each one is as important as the other because these are time and space specific. Each one is deserving of similar respect.”

    Yes, egalitarian state, secularism, socialism, all high concepts draw from that lofty thought.

    >>>”There is no need to think that Sanyasa is somehow more respectful than the others.”

    No need to think at all.

    What was mentioned was that bharatiya samskriti respects a sanyasi more than it does a raja. It happens to be fact, reality.

    But there is no compulsion, no dogma, that you should respect Mr Sanyasi more than anybody else.
    Adi Shankaracharya respected a chandala also as guru.

    Those who are fixated by dogmatic western indoctrination tend to seek strictures by which they may lead their lives. Such is not the way bharatiya samskriti suggests, which is about realized living, not dogmatic adherence.

    >>>”There are many people who die before reaching Sanyasa or who can’t get there because they have lingering Grihasta responsibilities.”

    According to bharatiya vicharadhara death is not the end of atman.

    >>>”only when the Samaja and Rashtra are healthy is it wise and sensible to be speaking of higher things. ”

    There are no higher things and lower things in bharatiya samskriti.
    Categorization of ‘higher’, ‘lower’, are of western construct.
    bharatiya samkriti realizes brahma in every being.
    dharma is what bharatiya samskriti is concerned with.

    >>>”One cannot reach Sanyasa by being negligent of Brahmacharya and Grihasta.”

    Compartmentalization is also western characteristic!

    Dhruva, Markandeya, Prahlada, etc., were realized beings at young age.
    Sri Ramakrishna Paramahamsa, Sri Ramana Maharshi, Adi Shankaracharya, Sri Dayananada Saraswati, Sri Narayana Guru, Vivekananda, … the endless list of people who were not grihasta.

    dogmas are creations of west.

    realization, moksha, real freedom, is of bharatiya samskriti

    You are not this body, not these thoughts you hold, not what others think of you, not even what your close family thinks of you. Not defined by what you have achieved, what you may achieve, what you remember, what you dream, what you envisage. You are beyond your perceptions, your experiences. The real essence of you, as per bharatiya samskriti, is brahma.
    Realize that.

    namaste

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