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Empowerment,  Uncategorized

So…What’s Your Religion?

World has become a difficult place to live; People are fighting over anything and everything. But the most prominent factor which always remains ‘in’ for debates is the ‘religion’.

I was never told about my religion by anyone; it automatically got imprinted in my mind after being part of numerous rituals and customs. And one day when a form asked my religion, my hands didn’t pause, even for a second, to write ‘Hindu’ in the column. I didn’t hesitate because it’s the years-long conditioning and I never thought of asking, what’s the religion? What’s a Hindu? Partly because I believed, our religion is what we are born with. Hence, I kept following…the Hinduism.

And now that I am reading ‘The Geeta’, I wonder why I never noticed that ‘this’ word is not even mentioned in this ancient and highly respected scripture of Hindus! It is said that ‘Geeta’ is meant for all humankind and is not any religion specific but then again, do you ever hear people claiming it as a Global scripture? No!

My curiosity took me to Google and for the first time in my life, I googled, “the meaning of Hindu….”

First thing that got revealed to me was ‘Hindu is not a Sanskrit word!’ (Which explains its absence from ‘Geeta’).

The story behind the origin of word ‘Hindu’ is even more interesting! The credit for its formation goes to the Persians who were not comfortable with the pronunciation of ‘S’ and instead, said ‘H’.

At that time ‘Sindhu’ was the Sanskrit name of today’s Indus River, flowing partly in the northern part of today’s India (Bharat earlier) and partly in Pakistan. Instead of calling it ‘Sindhu’, the Persians mispronounced it as ‘Hindu’ and referred to all the people living beyond this river as HINDUS, irrespective of whatever religion they were practising.

Amazing! Isn’t it? So basically, the word HINDU originated as a Geographic name rather than a religion. So yes, I am a Hindu and technically, so are the other 1.2 billion people living on this side of ‘Sindhu’!

But that’s not the case. This land has its share of religious diversity where the people are trying their best to attain heavens in their respective ways, sometimes even demeaning the others.

How I wish that we all had a common religion—HUMANITY. Just imagine a time when there will be peace—No problems, No disputes, No bloodshed in the name of religion and no one would ever care to ask the question, ” what did you say your religion was?”

Photo credits:

http://sket2ndlevel.org/

19 Comments

  • Sha'Tara

    Yes, imagine a world where no one asks what’s your religion; what’s your race; what’s your nationality; what’s your gender, or even what’s your age, I was raised Catholic and like yourself, never questioned it until I was relocated to a world where religion didn’t matter and the rituals became pointless. Heaven faded, as did so much other fairy tale stuff of invisible sky wizards demanding worship and sacrifice; fomenting wars and hatred of women (which most religious people simply do not see, or ignore). The problem with classical religions is that by their very nature they are exclusive and hegemonic. Every religion must be the only true one, however that is denied – there is no other reason for religion to exist but to endlessly struggle to a state of total world domination. When that ceases to be the case, it means the autocratic, absolute “wizard” has failed to hold HIS power and absolute domination and is no longer God, just a lesser spirit entity, an idol, who must share HIS power with other MALE divinities. Marx probably said it best: religion is the opium of the masses; that is its real purpose; to control the sheeple; to give them false hopes to some eternal life so they remain docile and subservient in the here and now. After Catholicism, and decades later I tried other forms of Christianity and studied other religions as well, while juxtaposing religion and imperial history. One always dovetails into the other in various combinations of controlling power. So I despise all religions, though not the religious. I despise the thinking behind religion; the hubris that it can speak for an invisible and un-provable all-powerful divinity and act in its name; the male cowardice in its built-in suppression of women, and its endless violent crimes against humanity in its rapacious greed and reckless hegemonic quest. So… yes, I would like to see a world without any form of religion; a world where the very word has become verboten – unspeakable.

    • Mann Kaundal

      Thank you Shatara for your inputs on the thought. I am becoming interesting in knowing things from where they started. I am not against everything but yes I have made up my mind to understand the facts behind these age-old practices. And I hope that there is something ‘humane’ back there to be learned.

  • Miriam

    Interesting insight. I’m a Catholic though I respect all codes. Too many lives wasted in the name of religion, or is that just an excuse.

  • cote8050

    wonderful post!! you are so right, I long for the day that no one asks what your religion is because we will all be together, an entire world of God, all together as one, some day…. I consider myself more Hindu than any other religion although I was raised Christian. I have a lot to learn about the Hindu faith but so far, I love it, fits me very well and I am very excited about learning more. much love and peace to you. Michelle

    • Mann Kaundal

      We created religion not the opposite.
      SO I think its up to a person how he/she wants to spent their life. Knowing New things is progress but keeping good ones is a real art. Best wishes with your discovering venture.

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