Philosophical Views and Certain Knowledge
M. S. Ravishankar
miinalochanii at HOTMAIL.COM
Mon Apr 26 18:52:13 CDT 1999
>From: Parisi & Watson <niche at AMERITECH.NET>
>It is both an advantage and a disadvantage being a Westerner. I came
>Vedanta as an adult as a result of serious and deliberate comparative
>study. But it's an easily observed fact that most people adopt the
>religion of their family and society. Just as most Indians are Hindu,
>most US-Americans are either Christians or Jews, at least nominally.
>None of us have the opportunity to choose our parents or families,
>most people never choose their religion.
In the same book, there is a chapter in which svAmigaL asks a
christian to follow his religion properly and be a good christian
rather than convert religions. That is very nice chapter.
In one of his talks shrI shrI chandrasekharendra sarasvatI says that
people who convert from one religion to another insult both of them.
By the considering that God of their former religion as not good
enough to help them and second by thinking the God of the new one is
different from the former.
One thing is, those convert and change their systems, if they get
confused, they will sending a lot of wrong signals to their children
and leave them in an unfortunate situation.
>However if we don't choose our family, still this group of people
>usually enjoys a loyalty on our part that is beyond question. The
>above illustrates this sort of unwavering commitment, expressed in a
>that would be almost impossible for someone who was not born into it.
>Because something that is adopted as a deliberate choice can always
>potentially be dropped again, or at least such a change is thinkable.
>we have our reasons for taking something up, other reasons can lead
>its abandonment. It is not so with something that we take up along
>our mother's milk. And while a convert may be more enthusiastic and
>dogmatic than many who were born into a belief, there is always
>something conditioned in his commitment.
Beautiful observation Robert.
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>From Mon Apr 26 19:42:16 1999
Date: Mon, 26 Apr 1999 19:42:16 -0500
Reply-To: niche at ameritech.net
To: List for advaita vedanta as taught by Shri Shankara
<ADVAITA-L at LISTS.ADVAITA-VEDANTA.ORG>
From: Parisi & Watson <niche at AMERITECH.NET>
Organization: Knitters Niche
Subject: Re: Re : Philosophical Views and Certain Knowledge
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M. S. Ravishankar wrote:
> In the same book, there is a chapter in which svAmigaL asks a
> christian to follow his religion properly and be a good christian
> rather than convert religions. That is very nice chapter.
> In one of his talks shrI shrI chandrasekharendra sarasvatI says that
> people who convert from one religion to another insult both of them.
> By the considering that God of their former religion as not good
> enough to help them and second by thinking the God of the new one is
> different from the former.
An excellent point, and I understand what you're saying about being a
good 'whatever' rather than changing beliefs. But, even though I was
always deeply moved by the music, art, and deep devotion of Catholicism,
I came to the point that I could no longer bear its dogmatic
sectarianism, and I found most of Protestantism even more repugnant. I
believe I would have similar problems with Judaism and especially Islam.
However, far from thinking that Hinduism and Advaita presented me with a
new and better God, I felt that it provided the missing key to
understanding what was really meant by all those medieval Christian
mystics, and ultimately by Jesus himself. But to this day I am unable to
stand up in a church and recite a Christian creed that includes
exclusive, sectarian views that I do not believe are valid. And beyond
that, the original purity and freshness of the Christian message has
been so hopelessly besmirched in the West - and particularly in the US -
that it's better, at least for me, just to move to something that is not
only more profound and to the point, but that has less personal baggage.
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