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Sanatana Dharma - Aka Hinduism (3rd Bin)
<b>Who is the enemy of Sanatana Dharma? </b>-- V SUNDARAM

When Napolean lay on his death bed, he said: 'May my son study history, for it is the only true philosophy.' History is indeed philosophy teaching by example, and also by warning; its four eyes are geography and chronology, culture and civilization.

        The History of India constitutes the Philosophy of RSS said the Vedic seer Dr Hedgewar, the epoch-maker and founder of the RSS in 1925. 'This land is the mother and I am her son.' The Puranas say: 'That land is called Bharat that lies north of the seas and south of the snowy mountains and those are Bharatiyas who consider this land as their motherland and live in it as the sons of the soil.'

        Whether Sonia Gandhi and her divided Congress party like it or not, the Hindu culture is the life-breath of Hindustan. It should therefore be clear that if Hindustan is to be protected, we should nourish the Hindu culture. If the Hindu culture perishes in Hindustan itself, and if the Hindu society ceases to exist, it would hardly be appropriate to refer to the merely inert geographical entity that would remain as Hindustan. Mere geographical lumps wedded to the perniciously divisive Congress/ Communist/ all other political parties' gimmick and shibboleth of paralyzing pseudo secularism will never make a nation. These were also the views of Anne Besant.

        These sacred thoughts, passions and emotions are totally irrelevant to a Roman Catholic individual like Sonia Gandhi even as the lives and sayings of great Catholic Saints of Italy are not part of my inherited consciousness. Sonia Gandhi, rooted in her Roman Catholicism, would dismiss the following observations of Swami Vivekananda with contempt: 'True human feelings, passions and emotions are indeed the gastric juices of the soul'.

        I am amused by Sonia Gandhi's infantile letter to President Abdul Kalam in which she has urged the President to reverse the Madhya Predesh Government's decision to lift the ban on government employees for participating in RSS shakhas and its other activities.

        As a petty politician steeped in self-chosen Himalayan pseudo-secular ignorance, she has described the decision as 'illegal' and a 'dangerous move'. She has described the RSS as a rightist organization with a long track record of 'stoking the religious prejudices, inflaming religious passions and polarizing the Indian society'.

As President of the disgraceful Congress Party today, she has mislead the President by stating that the State Governor was kept completely in the dark by the State Government while it took this policy decision that has 'far reaching implications and repercussions. I am drawing this inference from the reported statement in the press of Madhya Pradesh Governor Balram Jakhar on 21 September, 2006 when he took a dig at imposition of ban on State government employees in participating in RSS activities and its subsequent withdrawal saying 'it resembled the game of kabaddi wherein one government imposes the ban and the other lifts it'.

        Digvijay Singh (former Chief Minister of Congress) imposed the ban and Shivraj Singh Chouhan (current Chief Minister of BJP) lifted it. When another Chief Minister will take over charge, he will take his own decision'. He was dishing out these well-known and worn-out words of distilled Congress wisdom founded on hypocrisy and expediency at a meeting of Vice Chancellors where Congress Party politics was given precedence by the politically anti-Hindu Governor over crucial issues of higher education.

        Raj Nath Singh, BJP President, has not let down the silent Hindus in numerical majority in India by giving a rejoinder to Sonia Gandhi: 'The Madhya Pradesh government has carried out this move after a careful thought. There can be a ban on government employees from becoming members of political parties but so far as RSS is concerned, it is the world's largest socio-cultural organisation and there should be no ban on participating in its activities'. These comments of Raj Nath Singh came in the wake of Sonia Gandhi's petition to Kalam seeking his intervention to restore the bar on the State government employees on participating in Sangh activities.

        Sonia Gandhi and her degenerate Congress party have contempt for the following ruling given by the Supreme Court and all the High Courts in India on the nature, mission and ideology of the RSS in innumerable cases during the last sixty years: 'The RSS is a purely socio-cultural organization. It has never claimed to be political party and never declared by the government or any competent authority to be political party.

Its constitution was submitted by Guruji Golwalkar, the second Sarsangchalak of the RSS to the Government of India (to Sardar Vallabai Patel!!) in 1949 which was duly accepted'. Sonia Gandhi, as a petty party politician interested only in the loaves and spoils of known and hidden power, is mischievously endeavouring to use the exalted office of the President of India to unsettle this settled fact with evangelical fervour duly backed by the Pope in Rome. We should not forget that when he came to India some years ago, in a shameless way he declared that Asia and more particularly India is going to be the golden land for maximising 'the rich harvest of faith'.

        Whether Sonia Gandhi and her Congress Party like it or not, our Nation is celebrating the birth centenary of Sri Guruji Golwalkar on a grand scale in all parts of India. Thousands of Hindus in England, America, Europe, Africa, Australia and Asia are also celebrating this event to pay their tribute to a man of God who had no axe to grind, a man who in the pursuit of his timeless ideals had no languor in his heart, no weakness in his word and no weariness on his brow. He was clear and categorical in his declaration of India as a Hindu Nation. This will be clear from his inspiring exhortation in 1951: 'Today we find everywhere attempts to recast our life pattern in the mould of American, English or Russian way of life. How can we call it Swathantra (freedom) which has no Swa (our genius) in it? Then it is only Para-thantra. If Lenin is kept as the ideal, it becomes Lenin-thantra and not Swathantra. In fact, preservation and propagation of our national life-values i.e, our Dharma and Sanskriti, have always been held in our historical tradition as the raison d'etre of Swathantra'. Does not Sonia's letter to our President clearly bring out the fact that she is interested only in converting India into Sonia-thantra to serve the long range commercial interest of the Private Limited Company called the Congress Party today?

        When the Chief Minister of the central provinces, E Gordon, issued an order on December 15,1932 in which he said, 'the RSS in the opinion of the Government is undoubtedly of a communal nature and its participation in political movements is increasing, participation of the Government servants in such an organization is likely to become a hindrance to imperial discharge of their duties etc'.

        Dr Hedgewar confronted him in these words: 'I challenge you to prove it. Will you care to reply to these questions?In which political movement has the RSS taken part? Against which non-Hindu community has the Sagh taken up cudgels? If 'European Association', 'European Chamber of Commerce' and such other bodies are not 'communal', and if Government officers are allowed to participate in their activities, how could this organization established for organizing the Hindu society be viewed as 'communal'? And how could Government servants be prevented from participating in it? If any community acts against another, then its actions could be called 'communal'. But if there is an organization or a group of people who hate none and are interested in working for the welfare of their own society, how would it be justifiable to call it 'communal'?...May be the Government is worried about the activities of the RSS, and would like to suppress it. I SHOULD LIKE TO SUBMIT IN ALL HUMILITY, THAT IT WOULD NOT BE POSSIBLE FOR THE GOVERNMENT TO DO SO. We have undertaken this task trusting in God in utmost sincerity. What ever the obstacles in our way, we shall resolutely overcome them and achieve our goal.

        E Gordon, is dead and forgotten and the RSS has grown from strength to strength, even making the BBC acknowledge the fact that the RSS is the largest Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) which is not Leftist. Following the lead of Dr.Hegdewar, I would like to ask Sonia Gandhi whether she would raise the same objections to the Muslim and Christian Government Servants being members of several Islamic and Church groups functioning as cultural organizations throughout the country.

        Pope Benedict XVI, on 17 September, 2006, sought to extinguish days of anger and protest among Muslims by issuing an extraordinary personal apology for having caused offense with a speech last week that cited a reference to Islam as 'evil and inhuman.' By her continued recent political pronouncements in favour of only minorities at all costs to our sacred nation, Sonia Gandhi has clearly wounded the feelings, susceptibilities, hopes, urges and aspirations of the Hindus in numerical majority in India. On behalf of the Hindus of India, I would appeal to her to apologize to them in the same manner in which non-safforinized, non-communal, secular, cosmopolitan and international Pope Benedict XVI has apologized to the Muslims.

        Mahatma Gandhi, Vinoba Bhave, Achyut Parwardan, Dr Zakir Hussyan, General Cariappa and Jayaprakash Narayan, who have served our nation with as much dedication as our global leader Sonia Gandhi, have paid their unreserved tributes to the RSS as a non-communal, non-political and patriotic organization. Sonia Gandhi can afford to ignore them only at her own peril and that of her Private Limited Company. Bharat Mata Ki Jai! Vande Mataram!

(The writer is a retired IAS officer)

e-mail the writer at vsundaram@newstodaynet.com


Stick to topic
Deleted post which are not related to topic.

Science, hegemony and violence

Table of Contents

A Requiem for Modernity

Edited by




The United Nations University's Programme on Peace and Global Transformation was a major world-wide project whose purpose was to develop new insights about the interlinkages between questions of peace, conflict resolution, and the process of transformation. The research in this project, under six major themes, was co-ordinated by a 12-member core group in different regions of the world: East Asia, South-East Asia (including the Pacific), South Asia, the Arab region' Africa, western Europe, Eastern Europe, North America, and Latin America. The themes covered were: Conflicts over Natural Resources; Security, Vulnerability, and Violence; Human Rights and Cultural Survival in a Changing Pluralistic World; The Role of Science and Technology in Peace and Transformation; The Role of the State in Peace and Global Transformation; and Global Economic Crisis. The project also included a special project on Peace and Regional Security.

Oxford University Press, Walton Street, Oxford, OX2 6DP

The United Nations University
Toho Seimei Building, 15-1 Shibuya 2-chome
Shibuya-ku, Tokyo 150, Japan

© The United Nations University, 1988

Printed in India by P. K. Ghosh at Eastend Printers, 3 Dr Suresh Sarkar Road, Calcutta 700014 and published by S. K. Mookerjee, Oxford University Press YMCA Library Building, Jai Singh Road, New Delhi 110001



1. Introduction: Science as a reason of state


2. Francis Bacon, the first philosopher of modern science: A non-western view


3. Science, colonialism and violence: A luddite view


4. Atomic physics: The career of an imagination


5. Violence in modern medicine


6. Science and violence in popular fiction: Four novels of Ira Levin


7. Reductionist science as epistemological violence


8. On the annals of the laboratory state



One of the founding principles of all the Eastern religions is the Principle of Karma.

While an indidual accumulates Karma - do nations, cultures, soceities accumulate collective Karma too? What do our religions Buddhism, Jainism, Hinduism, Sikhism say?
<!--QuoteBegin-Bodhi+Nov 4 2006, 09:00 PM-->QUOTE(Bodhi @ Nov 4 2006, 09:00 PM)<!--QuoteEBegin-->One of the founding principles of all the Eastern religions is the Principle of Karma. 

While an indidual accumulates Karma - do nations, cultures, soceities accumulate collective Karma too?  What do our religions Buddhism, Jainism, Hinduism, Sikhism say?

Sikhs, Buddhists and Jains are a very definitive, while what/who is a Hindu?

Sikh means "Shishya" and guru means "Teacher" So sikhs have 11 teachers.
Similarly jains has Mahavira and Buddhsists had Buddha who/what/where started Hindu religion?

as far as I know, for sikhs, Buddhists and Jains hindu is a culture and not a religion in the same sense as "Sikhi or Buddhism or Jainism".

Hindus are the people who live in the land mass between Indus and Brahmputra, himalayas and Kanya Kumari.

Hindus are the people who have a collected culture (Ramayana, Mahabharata, dances, music, languages, vedas, upnishads, etc) of which is also the culture of Sikhs, buddhists and jains.

From Sikh perspective... following the ideals of Ramachandara and krishna are the utmost Khalsa deed you can do, but simply putting his idol in a temple and worshipping the idol is a disrespect for their ideals. Guru Gobind Singh when creating Khalsa on the first of Visakh 1699 said that "Rajputs and Kshtriyas have forgotten their Dharma and are thus giving away their daughters to the Mughals, from the common people of this land, I will create such Warriors who will work to redeem the lost honour". For this he sent out message all across India thus on the first of Visakh, 1699 people from all over India gathered at Chak Nanaki (Anandpur Sahib)., Just the five people that he picked were from Gujarat, from Bidar (andhra), from Jagannath Puri (Orissa), from Delhi, Lahore. You can imagine the wide audience he had at his disposal when creating the Khalsa.

That's why Guru Gobind Singh gave Khalsa 5 symbols.

1. Hair to never forget the truth (god given truth) and your Karma.

2. Steel Bracelet (equality, in old times people of higher upbringing used gold bracelets).

3. Kangha (cleanliness, untangle the hair, live like human and not Sadhus, raise children)

4. Kirpan to upheld the Dharma., even at the cost of own life.

5. Kachchaehra to remember the futility of lust.,

... A Karma of a Khalsa should be such that he/she should work towards breaking the cycle of birth and deaths.. otherwise life of 840 million (84 crores) species is awaiting you to be born again as human for yet another chance to redeem yourself and break the cycle of birth and death.

As well as I know... Kashmir Brahmins should have all converted (converted is a bad word, but realized the khalsa order) to Khalsa back in 1675 when they came to Guru Tegh Bahadur asking for Help. Only Pundit Kirpa Ram dutt (and few along with him) became Khalsa and he attained martyrdom fighting mughals at Chamkaur. Thus... we in 2006 are still having Kashmir and Pakistan problem.

Just like Kashmiri Brahmins rest of India also need to realize the importance of Khalsa, to be Saint yet Soldier and importance of Work Ethic. BTW... I do not consider Manmohan Singh to be a Khalsa of the Guru Gobind Singh since he in the supreme position of power and has let innocent people getting murdered at Benaras and Bombay without doing anything about it. He is Just a token person with turban on his head that goes around masquerading as a Khalsa.

Nice post Sandeep.

<!--QuoteBegin-Bodhi+Nov 4 2006, 09:00 PM-->QUOTE(Bodhi @ Nov 4 2006, 09:00 PM)<!--QuoteEBegin-->One of the founding principles of all the Eastern religions is the Principle of Karma. 

While an indidual accumulates Karma - do nations, cultures, soceities accumulate collective Karma too?  What do our religions Buddhism, Jainism, Hinduism, Sikhism say?


The principle of karma-phala is intimately tied up with the idea of reincarnation. A transmigrating-being (jiva) is responsible for all its karma and has to face the results of those karmas either in present birth or later births.

Nations, cultures, societies etc do not have a transmigrating-soul (jiva), and strictly speaking the karma-phala principle doesn't apply to them.

Lets say a brahmin who does bad things in this life may get reborn as a dog (say in Europe <!--emo&Wink--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/wink.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='wink.gif' /><!--endemo-->). He is facing his karmas accordingly. What do brahmins as a group or dogs as a group have to do with this.

If one says that brahmins as a group have to endure the karma of the past acts of other brahmins, then one is making an implicit assumption that only brahmins get reborn as brahmins. Which is absurd, as countless counterexamples are given in puranas etc. In fact an evil acting brahmin is likely to be reborn in a much less privileged position/group/caste/society etc than his/her past one.

So, this idea of groups carrying around the karma of their indivdual members is absurd, and is not supported by the karma-phala principle.
karma-phala is also tied up intimately with the idea of free-will and the actor who posseses that will (kartaa).

Only an actor (kartaa) who acts according to his free will, is liable for his actions (karma) and has to reap the fruit (phala) of his/her actions.

It is trivial to identify the 'kartaa' in individuals.

If one wants to stretch it, one may argue that even societies possess the 'kartaa'-ness. But it is very hard to justify that the free will of choice was with the group and not with the individual. Even if a group tries to foist a 'collective-choice' on an individual, it is the individual that still has the free-will to accept or reject that. Similarly the indivduals of the group that foist this collective-choice on others by their free will, build up their own karma accordingly.
Ashok Kumar ji, thanks for your reply. I agree with the gist of what you are saying. Karma is dependant upon:

- Karta-conciousness. (and therefore the reverse being Akarta-karma described by Sri Krishna)
- Atma, or individual self, to accumulate the Karma.
- Karma-bhog binds the jiv into the cycle of life.
- Therefore the need of reincarnation to live out or Bhog the sanchit or accumulated Karma-phala.
- Concepts of Karma-Yoni (human) and Bhog-Yoni (all others)

Karma can be donated to the others and adopted from others too? Like King Bhagirath did for the moksha of his ancestors? He accepted the fate of his ancestors upon himself to live out their sanchit Karmas through the tapasya in his own life. No?

Also I agree that a nation is not like an individual, does not have a Jiv or Atma, therefore can not have Karma-sanchay, Karma-vivek (Karta-ness), Karma-phala and Karma-Bhog... But to some extent I also feel, a nation is still much like an individual....has a life, has a collective chitta, collective man, buddhi, ahankar, prana...though different from those of individuals...

Thanks for the comments.

I agonized over the same thoughts. A nation appears and acts like an individual in many situations. So does a family, a caste, a religion, fans of a cine-star, fans of a crtain sports team, a lynching mob ..., all these groupings can act like individuals and have individual personalities etc.

In my opinion there are two kinds of belonging of an 'individual' to a 'general'. One kind of belonging is non-essential (even optional), other type is essenial.

Non-essential membership is like being a fan of a certain sports team. Essential type is like being a human. As long I live I will be a human. But even being human is not an essential type of belonging if we assume that a soul or jiva survives death. If that jiva is reborn as a member of another species, then that means belonging to the group of humans is also not an essential type of membership.

According to vedanta, all identifications and memberships are in the non-essential category except the one identification of the individual jiva with the universal brahman. Only that identity can't be negated/subrated. All other identities can. Even while living in the world, an individual can increasinglybecome aware of the essential identity of his deepest being with the universl Brahman, (the Atman that is Brahman).

But karma-phala etc work at a lower level, where time is active and cause-effect have their play.

Karma-phala principle presumes existence of a law, an ethical law, the dharma or the R^ita, breaking which is pApa and following which is puNya. It also presumes that there is a mechanism to enforce that law. In hinduism, the mechanism is called dharma or dharmarAja. Ostensibly dhrmarAja (or yamarAja) decides what a person deserves according to his/her actions. Whether dharmarAja is an individual, a commitee, or simply a complicated mechanism of action-reaction is not important for our discussion.

There are interventions (in the action of the law of dharma) possible, specifically a saint or God's grace can lessen the karma-phala. But usually it is said that avoiding one's karma is very hard. Even when a saint takes over someone's karma, that saint still has to suffer on the behalf of that person. Only true intervention allowed is divine-grace that can neutralize anything, since divine is eternally free and not bound by any laws.

If we start talking about karma of nations, for example, then we will have to presume existence of a dharmic law for the nations and an enforcing mechanism.

Sri Krishna in Gita says he is present as the self in all the beings. But he doesn't mean that he is present as the self in all possible identifications a person can make, such as a nation, or a religion.

To me it appears that it is sufficient to presume existence of dharma (karma-phala etc follow dharma) for individuals. The effects for any collective identifications then follow from the individuals' karma.

Lets say that certain ideologies, practices etc that are in general agreement with the Dharma, will be favoured by the dharmic law in making certain meritorious individuals to become member of that group. So if the practices of a nation or a religion etc are in line with the Dharma, then dhArrmic law would use membership in those groupings to reward meritorious souls. In turn those groupings get strengthened by further actions of those meritorious souls as long as they are in accordance with the dharma. On the other hand adhArmic groupings will accrue less meritorious souls as members and suffer accordingly.

In this sense may be we can propose a 'karma' of a grouping or a nation. Although it is still based fundamentally on the 'karma' of the individual.

To consider a physics analogy, it is like saying a phonon is a fundamental particle although it is basically a result of all the vibrations taking place in a solid lattice, and therefore a phonon is not on the same fundamental footing as an electron or proton.
Some more random thoughts:

After the Gaia phenomenon within the new-age movement, many people started thinking that humans and all living beings form parts of a large planet-wide organism, called mother-earth or gaia.

Someone asked Mother-Meera, whether relation of a human to the mother earth (bhUmAtA) is that of a part in a larger whole. She replied that the relationship is not like a part and a whole, but rather that of a mother and her children. Children are not part and parcel of the mother, but are separate individuals although dependent on her.

When we think of Mother-India, we can ask a similar question. Do all Indians form a part of mother India or they her children? That is, is Mother-India nothing more than a collection of all the Indians, or is she an independent entity with her own individuality, separate from her children?

A village can have village deities, a family has family deities, similarly a nation can have a national-deity that looks after the members of that nation. That national-deity is not just a collection of all the individuals that make up the nation, but is more like their caretaker, like a mother.
Annie Besant shares some thoughts in her 'A Study in Karma'. Though she does refer to Aryan Invasion, which I think we can ignore considering she was also a product of her time.

<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->We must consider what is termed Collective Karma, the complex into which are woven the results of the collective thoughts, desires and activities of groups, whether large or small. The principles at work are the same, but the factors are far more numerous, and this multiplicity immensely increases the difficulty of understanding the effects.

The idea of considering a group as a larger individual is not alien from modern science, and such larger individuals generate karma along lines similar to those which we have been studying. A family, a nation, a sub-race, a race, are all but larger individuals, each having a past behind it, the creator of its present, each with a future ahead of it, now in course of creation. An ego coming into such a larger individual must share in its general karma; his own special karma has brought him into it, and must be worked out within it, the larger karma often offering conditions which enable the smaller to act.

Let us consider the collective karma of a family. The family has a thought-atmosphere of its own, into the colouring of which enter family traditions and customs, family ways of regarding the external world, family pride in the past, a strong sense of family honour. All the thought-forms of a member of the family will be influenced by these conditions, built up perhaps through hundreds of years, and shaping, moulding, colouring, all the thoughts, desires and activities of the individual newly born into it. Tendencies in him that conflict with family traditions will be suppressed, all unconsciously to him; the things "a fellow cannot do" will have for him no attraction; he will be lifted above various temptations, and the seeds of evil which such temptations might have vivified in him will quietly atrophy away. The collective karma of the family will provide him with opportunities for distinction, open out avenues of usefulness, bring him advantages in the struggle for life, and ensure his success. How has he come into conditions so favourable? It may be by a personal tie with some one already there, a service rendered in a previous life, a bond of affection, an unexhausted relationship. This avails to draw him into the circle, and he then profits by the various karmic results which belong to the family in virtue of its collective past, of the courage, ability, usefulness of some of its members, that have left an inheritance of social consideration as a family heirloom.

Where the family karma is bad the individual born into it suffers, as in the former case he profits, and the collective karma hinders, as in the former instance it promoted, his welfare.

In both cases the individual will usually have built up in himself characteristics which demand for their full exercise the environment provided by the family. But a very strong personal tie, or unusual service, might, without this, draw a man into a family wherein was his beneficiary, and so give him an opportunity which, generally, he has not deserved, but had won by this special act of his past.


Let us think on the collective karma of a nation. Face to face with this, the individual is comparatively helpless, for nothing he can do can free him from this, and he must trim his sails to it as best he may. Even a Master can but slightly modify national karma, or change the national atmosphere.

The rise and fall of nations are brought about by collective karma. Acts of national righteousness or of national criminality, led up to by noble or base thinking, largely directed by national ideals, bring about national ascent or national descent. The actions of the Spanish Inquisition, the driving of the Jews and of the Moors out of Spain, the atrocious cruelties accompanying the conquests of Mexico and Peru - all these were national crimes, which dragged Spain down from its splendid position of power, and reduced it to comparative powerlessness.

Seismic changes - earthquakes, volcanoes, floods - or national catastrophes like famine and plague, all are cases of collective karma, brought about by great streams of thoughts and actions of a collective rather than an individual character.

As with a family, so with a nation to a much greater degree, will there be an atmosphere created by the nation's past; and national traditions, customs, viewpoints, will exercise a vast influence on the minds of all who dwell within the nation. Few individuals can free themselves wholly from these influences, and consider a question affecting the nation without any bias, or see it from a standpoint other than that of their own people. Hence largely arise international quarrels and suspicions, mistaken views, and distorted opinions of the motives of another nation. Many a war has broken out in consequence of the differences in the thought-atmospheres surrounding the prospective combatants, and these difficulties are multiplied when the nations spring from different racial stocks, as, say, the Italians and the Turks. All the knower of karma can do, in these cases, is to realise the fact that his opinions and views are largely the product of the larger individuality of his nation, and to check this bias as much as he can, giving full weight to the views obtained from the standpoint of the antagonistic nation.

When a man finds himself in the grip of a national karma which he cannot resist - say that he is a member of a conquered nation - he should calmly study the causes which have led to the national subjugation, and should set to work to remedy them, endeavouring to influence public opinion along lines which will eradicate these causes.

There was an article published in East and West - Mr. Malabari's paper - some time ago on the national karma of India, which was an admirable example of the way in which national karma should not be regarded. It was said that the national karma of India was that it should be conquered - obviously true, else the conquest of India would not have taken place - and that it should therefore accept its lot of service, and not try to change any of the existing conditions - as obviously wrong. The knower of karma would say: The Indians were not the original possessors of this country; they came down from Central Asia, conquering the land, subduing its then peoples, and reducing them to servitude; during thousands of years they conquered and ruled, and they generated a national karma. They trod down the conquered tribes, and made them slaves, oppressing them and taking advantage of them. The bad karma thus made brought down upon them in turn many invaders. Greeks, Mughals, Portuguese, Dutch, French, English - they all came, and fought, and conquered, and possessed. Still the lesson of karma has not been learned, though the millions of the untouchables are a standing proof of the wrongs inflicted upon them. Now the Indians ask for a share in the government of their own country, and they are hampered by this bad national karma. Let them, then, while asking for the growth of freedom for themselves, atone to these untouchables by giving them social freedom and lifting them in the social scale. A national effort must remove this national evil, and do away with a continuing cause of national weakness. India must redeem the wrong she has done, and cleanse her hands from oppression; so shall she change her national karma, and build the foundation of freedom. Karma will work for freedom and not against it, when the karma generated by oppression is changed into the karma made by uplifting and respecting. Public feeling can be changed, and every man who speaks graciously and kindly to an inferior is helping to change it. Meanwhile all whose own individual karma has brought them into the nation should recognise facts as they are, but should set to work to change those that are undesirable. National karma may be changed, like individual karma, but as the causes are of longer continuance, so must be the effects, and the new causes introduced can only slowly modify the results outgrowing from the past.

The karma which brings about seismic catastrophes and other national disasters includes in its sweep vast numbers of individuals whose special karma contains sudden death, disease, or prolonged physical suffering. It is interesting and instructive to notice the way in which people who have not such karmic liabilities are called away from the scene of a great catastrophe, while others are hurried into it; when an earthquake slays a number of people there will be cases of "miraculous escape" - one called away by a telegram, by urgent business, etc. - and of equally miraculous tossing of victims into the place in time for their slaying. If such calling away proved to be impossible, then some special arrangement at the moment guarded from death, a beam, keeping off falling stones, or the like.

When a natural catastrophe is impending, people with appropriate individual karma are gathered together in the place, as in the flood at Johnstown, Pa., or the great earthquake and fire at San Francisco. In an earthquake in the north of India a few years ago, there were some victims who had posted back in hot haste - to be killed. Others left the place the night before - to be saved from death. The local catastrophe is used to work off particular karmas. Or a carriage taking a man to the station is stopped in a street block, and he misses the train. He is angry, but the train is wrecked and he is saved. It is not that the block was there in order to stop him, but that the block was utilised for the purpose. At Messina some who were not to die were dug out days afterwards, and in more than one case food had come to maintain life, brought by an astral agent. In shipwrecks, again, safety or death will depend on individual karma. Sometimes an ego has a debt of sudden death to pay, but it has not been included in the debts to be discharged during the present incarnation; but his presence in some accident brought about by a collective karma offers the opportunity of discharging the debt "out of due time". The ego prefers to seize the opportunity and to get rid of the karma, and his body is struck away with the rest.
I think Annie Besant is also saying that it is individual person's behavior that determines a group's karma, but she doesn't outrightly says it.

In light of this I wish to come back to my phonon analogy.

In quantum mechanics you can get the so called "collective excitations" where due to coherence a collection of individual particles starts to behave like a single particle. Superfluidity, superconductivity, bose-condensaton etc are some examples.

A phonon is quantized lattice vibration. Any crystalline solid can be thought of as a lattice. Lattice is made of all the atoms and is held together by the electromagnetic forces between the protons and electrons. Vibrations in the lattice are basically vibrations of individual nucleii. But when taken together these vibrations form the phonons or the sound-waves within the solid. Phonons behave like particles and interact with electrons by scattering off them just like photons do. In studying some aspects of a solid's behavior it is easier to use the idea of phonons, although everything about a phonon can be derived by a collective behavior of all the potons and electrons in the solid.

This is how I think of karma of a grouping. A grouping is formed by certain coherence amongst its members creating some collective behavior. That collective behaviour can be understood as a behavior of a collective individual for some purposes. Although everything about that collective individual is still explainable by the behaviour of its individual constituents.

It is possible to talk of 'karta-ness' and 'karma', 'phala' etc for a grouping treating the whole grouping as an individual, just as a phonon can be talked of a particle in its own right. But fundamentally, the behavior of human individuals can explain everything about the grouping including its karma.
Hello all,
I am new here, actually am coming from BR. I have a question regarding Brahmins/Hinduism and hope this is the right place to post it.

I am curious to know (& have been trying to find out) how the practice of Brahmins not eating meat or in general abstinence came into being. I am looking for a logical answer (cause many of my searches led to junk <!--emo&:angry:--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/mad.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='mad.gif' /><!--endemo--> ) i.e. how, when (approx time period; kind of know it post Indus) and under what circumstances this practice began? Am also curious how this practice still exists even today! Was it strictly enforced during its inception and if so, by whom?

Further, I take the liberty of sharing a few things I know, which are rudimentary and may not be accurate. Example: not eating garlic, I am aware that its supposed to increase one's libido/sexual energy and thus would be counter productive to celibacy. But again, why a brahmin or even a sage/'rishi' (who used to marry and have family) needed celibacy? I hope I am not offending anyone by the above content. If so, I apologize in advance. Awaiting responses.
I'll take a crack at it and be subject to correction. Vegetarianism is a higher evolution in thinking and is there from antiquity. Also the influence of Jainism is very strong on this issue. So maybe from Mahavira's time.
As to who regulates the behavior, it is self regulated and some biradari effect is there.
For Hindus food is of three types- tamasa, rajas and satvic. Garlic etc which are root vegetables are tamasic and hence verboten for higher thinking. H^2 can comment.
Food is directly related to the resulting state of mind. There has been a consensus amongst all eastern religions. Great Acharya of Hath Yog, Guru Goraksha Nath ji says:

"Atyahaar indriya bal karati
Naashati gyan maithun chit dharati"

(Excessive or improper food contributes to rebellious senses, destroys wakefulness, and imposes to chitta the sensual desires. - Guru Gorakhnath)

Both garlic and onion have been understood to be tamasik, and cause darkening effects upon the chitta. Shastras have compared Onion to the 'nails-of-the-swine'.
Both of these herbs are useful though in treating various diseases, and are accepted by Ayurveda as medicine but not as food. Both of these herbs do contribute to increased cravings for sensual desires (sex being one).
Regarding your second point:

Bramhacharya (and not celibacy) was what was the greatly respected acheivement. "Celibacy" or "abstinence" are very inaccurate but unfortunately very often (mis)used translations for Bramhacharya. Bramacharya is not celibacy, but a spiritual state of being Bramha-like.

Majority of Avatars, rishis, saints, Bhaktas, Yogis were married, many of them had more than one wives, had children and family. They never treated sex to be a taboo or something to be dreaded. Yes, there have been UrdhwaRetas too (Hanuman, Bheeshma etc) but majority has been family men.

Unlike christianism which considers celibacy a great virtue and considers sex to be sinful, sex has been a normal and respectful thing in the eastern way of life.
<!--emo&Big Grin--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/biggrin.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='biggrin.gif' /><!--endemo--> Bodhi,
I did not understand ur verbosity but I will go w/ Vishwas
If Hindus (Brahmins included) thought that onions and garlic had a positive effect on libido, they would be eating them everyday and twice on Sunday! (I had such a hearty laugh after reading this.)
btw: an onion a day keeps the dentist away; so, Vishwas, choice is between smell/dentist. Make an informed choice.
Almost as soon as I made my previous post, I regretted it, because I knew it would be liable to be misconstrued.

The point of my previous post was that, the reason for avoiding onions would have to be something else - not its purported sexual effect, since Hindus, as a matter of course, are not required to be celibate except in the first and last ashramas. I may be wrong on this, though.

I do remember reading somewhere (perhaps in one of the dharmashastras) that foods with a bad smell are to be avoided. Onion or garlic were not mentioned. Yet, I assumed that this could be the reason.
Garlic, leeks and onions, mushrooms and (all plants), springing from impure (substances), are unfit to be eaten by twice-born men. (Manu Smrithi 5.5)

A twice-born man who knowingly eats mushrooms, a village-pig, garlic, a village-cock, onions, or leeks, will become an outcast. (Manu Smrithi 5.9)
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Bramhacharya (and not celibacy) was what was the greatly respected acheivement. "Celibacy" or "abstinence" are very inaccurate but unfortunately very often (mis)used translations for Bramhacharya. Bramacharya is not celibacy, but a spiritual state of being Bramha-like.

Majority of Avatars, rishis, saints, Bhaktas, Yogis were married, many of them had more than one wives, had children and family. They never treated sex to be a taboo or something to be dreaded. Yes, there have been UrdhwaRetas too (Hanuman, Bheeshma etc) but majority has been family men.

You are correct that Hinduism does not have a concept of "sin" and sex is not a sin.

But the question is can a man who is not a Brahmachari achieve moksham?

I scanned the Shastras for an answer.

And unfortunately according to the Shastras and according to the opinion of learned scholars being a strict Brahmachari is a pre-requisite for Moksham.

Only an Urdhwareta yogi who has controlled sex desire can enter into Samadhi and come face to face with Brahman (God).

Only he is eligible to become immortal and he will not be reborn again.

Everyone else will be reborn again, either in this planet or any where else in this universe.

Those who are good people but not celibates will be born in higher and better worlds according to how much good they have done.

They may be born in Swarga or Brahmaloka. After their lifespan there is over they will be born again on earth in rich and noble familes.

But they will not achieve moksham.

This is the hard cold sad fact of this universe.
I hope no one gets offended by what I am saying.

You do not have to be a Hindu to see God.
But you do have to be celibate.

We cannot achieve Moksham is one life time. It will take a lot of life times.

We have to have tremendous Bhakti. We need faith in the Devas. Faith in Pitrs. Faith in the Vedas. Faith that the supreme being, the all pervading Brahman actually exists.

Step by step you should march.

Then by the grace of the Devas, your forefathers and by the Supreme Being itself in your last life Vairagya will dawn and you will begin the march toward becoming an Urdhareta Yogi.

Then the gate of immortality will open.

Until then you just have to do more Japam either of Gayatri mantra or OM or OM NAMAH SIVAYA or OM NAMO NARAYANAYA etc... and purify your mind.


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