[Advaita-l] RE: Do Hindus have self-respect?

Vidyasankar Sundaresan svidyasankar at hotmail.com
Tue Jan 11 13:05:08 CST 2005

>             Yesterday evening a team of policemen barged into the Holy 
>precincts of the Kanchi Kamakoti Peetam and arrested the junior 
>Sankaracharya while he was doing the evening puja. The policemen were found 
>to be wearing shoes and showed no respect whatsoever to the place they were 
>in. Can this happen in a place of worship or reverence belonging to any of 
>the other religions? Why are we taking this lying down? Do we really have 
>any self-respect left? What do we do about it?

The ridiculous chain of events in Tamil Nadu is quite saddening. The first 
question to be asked is, what were the hundreds of people present at the 
scene doing? From all the photographs available in the media, it seemed as 
if a large crowd had gathered at the Math premises, following the news of 
bail granted to the senior head. I am quite sure at least some of them were 
socially important people. Did even one of them stand up and ask the 
policemen to remove their shoes before entering? If we can't stand up when 
it counts, what is the point of getting angry later? People need to be 
pro-active wherever they are, and it seems to me that the devotees of the 
Kanchi Math who were actually present at the scene failed miserably in their 
duty. The fundamental issue is that unlike most Hindus, people belonging to 
the other religions have a strong identity of which they are by and large 
quite proud. Self-respect is something internal. The only thing we can 
really do about it is to cultivate it in ourselves.


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