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Hinduism - violence

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janaki Views: 1,991
Published: 16 years ago
Status:       R [Message recommended by a moderator!]
This is a reply to # 68,910

Hinduism - violence

Thanks for that post.

Hinduism does indeed promote non-violence. I would however like to draw your attention to the reality of decades of religious violence and strife in India, as I understand a lot of it is encouraged by politicians to ensure votes. Hindus have proven themselves just as bloodthirsty as anyone else historically. Many Hindus are now adopting more western diets that include meat. Of course many still follow a vegetarian diet. There have been many religious riots in India. When I recently heard of the earthquake in Kashmir, I did not feel surprised since that region is home to a great deal of conflict, and has for decades.

It is tempting to speak in generalities, but sometimes dangerous to do so. The time I spent in India was quite surprising to me in different ways. I witnessed much violence there, and I was living in an ashram too! What surprised me I suppose was that I saw such deep affection and such deep violence sometimes in the same places and within the same people. It is not a gentle place in my opinion.

Worshipping female deities and an elephant deity also do not suggest anything about peacefulness. The various deities are considered aspects of god or the divine; breaking it down as it were so that we can understand something too profound for us in its entirety. The Hindu deity which represents preservation and peace is Vishnu, which is a male deity. The Hindu scriptures are full of bloodshed, but this bloodshed is often symbolic of the ruthlessness with which we must approach destroying our inner demons. Things are not always as they seem.

I do agree, however with your perspective on violence. I choose not to eat meat or to participate in this harming process because I wish to have less violence in myself and my environment. And this is why Hindus have traditionally avoided meat as well. I just think generalities which are based on uninformed speculation can often be dangerous.


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