The Indians at large are caring, kind, and good-hearted human beings; a number of good stories are coming to light, of people caring for each other. India’s pluralistic culture* has a solid grounding and the efforts of the current political dispensation in India to sow the seeds of discord – to divide and rule Indians will eventually fail, it is not our heritage.
In an effort to mitigate ill-will towards Hindus, who are a great people, I have taken it as my mission to separate the tiny segment among Hindus to be identified as Hindutvadis** and not Hindus. It is like separating Nazis, KKK, and other gangs from Christianity, ISIS, and Al-Qaeda from Islam and the settlers from Judaism.
The next step is to have a continuing dialogue with the Hindutvadis, to understand them. I firmly believe that conflicts occur due to misunderstandings and myths propagated. If we take the time to know each other, not superficial, but really deep knowledge, it will lead to understanding each other, and understanding will lead to acceptance of each other.
When we talk about Mukti, Moksha, salvation, and Nijaat; what we are talking about is living a tension-free, conflict-free life. Humans aspire to live without conflicts, and we will do our best to walk the talk with malice towards none.
All of us need to shelve the hatred and ill-will towards each other. We need to be inclusive if we want others to be inclusive. Towards that effort, I am meeting the Hindutvadis, and I believe if we “know” each other, most of the biases will start fading.
India will be a great nation again if the current political leaders realize that Indian culture cannot be changed. They will drop the idea of pitching hatred towards Muslims and Christians if we learn about each other. Together, we have to restore India to its glory days of caring for each other regardless of religion. Prosperity is a strange animal, and you cannot prosper by yourselves without success to others who surround you.
The following pieces of good news give high hopes for humanity in India, and the resilience of the pluralistic Indian culture.
Frank Islam Foundation for peace and prosperity
First of all, a video clip made by the Frank Islam Foundation, a philanthropist who has been at the forefront of promoting positive journalism in India.
Sikh Father and Son who saved Muslims during the Delhi Riots in March’20.
A Sikh father and son have been hailed as heroes after saving many Muslims during the deadly religious riots which swept through parts of the Indian capital Delhi last week.
Mohinder and Inderjeet Singh hid people in their homes before whisking them to safety during the violence, sparked by anger over a controversial new law.
Full story – https://www.bbc.com/news/av/world-asia-india-51758233/delhi-riots-the-sikh-father-and-son-who-saved-muslims
How Hindus Helped Muslims
Delhi riots witnessed gut-wrenching violence which left over 40 people dead and over 200 injured. But it also highlighted the spirit of love and harmony between different religious communities, which puts India above hate.
Full story – https://www.indiatoday.in/programme/news-today/video/india-above-hate-how-hindus-helped-muslims-muslims-helped-hindus-during-delhi-violence-1651001-2020-02-28
Obviously, there are more stories of Hindus caring for others, and we will add them here.
Muslims take the body of their Hindu neighbor for cremation, while his relatives shied away.
MEERUT: A crowd of mourners, most of them wearing white and brown skull caps, baffled onlookers as they carried a body to the cremation ground in UP’s Bulandshahr amid chants of “Ram Naam Satya Hai”.
Ravi Shankar, in his late 40s, had died on Saturday afternoon after a prolonged battle with cancer at his home in Bulandshahr’s Anand Vihar area, leaving behind his wife and four children. With relatives stuck due to the lockdown, Shankar’s distraught wife didn’t know whom to turn to.
Full story – https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/muslims-take-body-of-hindu-neighbour-for-cremation-in-up/articleshow/74880235.cms
Muslims protecting Hindus and Hindu Temple
Muslims running with water bottles and biscuits to serve migrant workers
Migrant is the wrong word used in India, they are workers from different states, not from outside India.
Religious zeal shattered Delhi’s lives and dreams. Religious zeal is now picking up the pieces, too
There’s only so much we can do…We don’t care if they are Hindu or Muslim. We Sikhs have been taught that our duty is to help those who are being oppressed, so we’re here just to serve,” 26-year-old Raj Singh said, pouring dal on to plates.
Full story – https://qz.com/india/1809634/delhi-riots-have-brought-hindus-muslims-sikhs-together/
* I cannot in my good conscience praise my motherland wholeheartedly, without serious reflection of how the Dalits have been treated for thousands of years. They are treated less than human as untouchables and are continually oppressed and mistreated. Thanks to Mahatma Gandhi, who made good efforts to change the word Untouchable to God’s People. Thanks to Dr. Ambedkar for writing India’s constitution to correct that evil practice.
** Hindutva is not Hinduism – https://centerforpluralism.com/hindutva-is-not-hinduism/
Dr. Ghouse is a community consultant, thinker, author, newsmaker, and an interfaith wedding officiant. He is a speaker on religious freedom, Pluralism in religion, politics, society and the workplace, and offers pluralistic solutions on issues of the day. More at www.TheGhouseDiary.com