This is going to be a long article of about 2,200 words. But sit tight it will be worth your time and effort.
A reader of my blog gave me a WA forward giving the views of one Dr David Frawley on India. Dr Frawley has been awarded the Padma Bhushan by the Indian government so he is not a crank. I think he is criticized for being a Hindutva apologist but if he writes something then it is worth our reading it sympathetically.
You can skim through most of the text below. The main points made here are that the country is in a mess because of corruption, extreme affirmative action, minority appeasement, virulent anti-Brahmanism, votebank politics and so on.
The following is the text of the WA forward (in italics):
A defeatist tendency exists in the psyche of modern Indians perhaps unparalleled in any other country today. An inner conflict bordering on a civil war rages in the minds of the country’s elite. The main effort of its cultural leaders appears to be to pull the country down or remake it in a foreign image, as if little Indian and certainly nothing Hindu was worthy of preserving or even reforming.
The elite of India suffers from a fundamental alienation from the traditions and culture of the land that would not be less poignant had they been born and raised in a hostile country. The ruling elite appears to be little more than a native incarnation of the old colonial rulers who haughtily lived in their separate cantonments, neither mingling with the people nor seeking to understand their customs. This new English-speaking aristocracy prides itself in being disconnected from the very soil and people that gave it birth.
There is probably no other country where It has become a national pastime among its educated class to denigrate its own culture and history, however great that has been over the many millennia of its existence. When great archaeological discoveries of India’s past are found, for example, they are not a subject for national pride but are ridiculed as an exaggeration, if not an invention, as if they represent only the imagination of backward chauvinistic elements within the culture.
There is probably no other country where the majority religion, however enlightened, mystical or spiritual, is ridiculed, while minority religions, however fundamentalist or even militant, are doted upon. The majority religion and its institutions are taxed and regulated while minority religions receive tax benefits and have no regulation or even monitoring. While the majority religion is carefully monitored and limited as to what it can teach, minority religions can teach what they want, even if anti-national or backward in nature. Books are banned that offend minority religious sentiments but praised if they cast insults on majority beliefs.
There is probably no other country where regional, caste and family loyalties are more important than the national interest, even among those who claim to be democratic, socialist or caste reformers. Political parties exist not to promote a national agenda but to sustain one region or group of people in the country at the expense of the whole. Each group wants as big a piece of the national pie as it can get, not realizing that the advantages it gains mean deprivation for other groups. Yet when those who were previously deprived gain power, they too seek the same unequal advantages that causes further inequality and discontent.
India’s affirmative action code is by far the most extreme in the world, trying to raise up certain segments of the population regardless of merit, and prevent others from gaining positions however qualified they may be. In the guise of removing caste, a new castism has arisen where one’s caste is more important than one’s qualifications either in gaining entrance into a school or in finding a job when one graduates. Anti-Brahminism has often become the most virulent form of castist thinking. People view the government not as their own creation but as a welfare state from which they should take the maximum personal benefit, regardless of the consequences for the country as a whole.
Outside people need not pull Indians down – Indians are already quite busy keeping any of their people and the country as a whole from rising up. They would rather see their neighbors or the nation fail if they are not given the top position. It is only outside of India that Indians succeed, often remarkably well, because their native talents are not stifled by the dominant cultural self-negativity and rabid divisiveness that exists in the country today.
Political parties in India see gaining power as a means of amassing personal wealth and robbing the nation. Political leaders include gangsters, charlatans and buffoons who would stop short at nothing to gain power for themselves and their coteries. Even so-called modern or liberal parties resemble more the courts of kings, where personal loyalty is more important than any democratic participation. Once they gain power politicians routinely do little but cheat the people for their own advantage. Even honest politicians find that they cannot function without some deference to the more numerous corrupt leaders who often have a stranglehold on the bureaucracy.
Politicians divide the country into warring vote banks and place one community against another. They offer favors to communities, like bribes to make sure that they are elected, or stay in power. They campaign on slogans that appeal to community fears and suspicions rather than create any national consensus or harmony.They hold power based upon blame and hatred rather than on any positive programs for social change. They inflame the uneducated masses with propaganda rather than work to make people aware of real social problems like overpopulation, poor infrastructure or lack of education.
Should a decent government come to power the opposition pursues pulling it down as its main goal, so that they can gain power for themselves. The idea of a constructive or supportive opposition is hard to find. The goal is to gain power for oneself and to not allow anyone else to succeed.
To further their ambitions, Indian politicians will manipulate the foreign press to denigrate their opponents, even if it means spreading lies and rumors and making the country an anathema in the eyes of the outside world. Petty conflicts in India are blown out of proportion in the foreign media, not by foreign journalists but by Indians seeking to use the media to score points against their own opponents in the country. The Indians who are responsible for the news of India in the foreign press spread venom and distortion about their own country, perhaps better than any foreigner who dislikes the culture ever could.
The killing of one Christian missionary becomes a national media event of anti-Christian attacks while the murder of hundreds of Hindus is taken casually without any real importance, as if only the deaths of white-skinned people matter, not the slaughter of the natives. Missionary aggression is extolled as social upliftment, while Hindu efforts at self-defense against the conversion onslaught are portrayed as rabid fundamentalism. One Indian journalist even lamented that western armies would not come to India to chastise the political groups he was opposed to, as if he was still looking for the colonial powers to save him!
Let us look at the type of leaders that India has had, with it’s Laloo Prasad Yadav (ex CM Bihar), Mulayam Singh Yadav (ex CM UP) or Karunanidhi clan (TN) to mention but a few. Such individuals are little more than warlords who surround themselves with sycophants.
Modern Indian politicians appear more like colonial rulers looting their own country, following a divide and rule policy, to keep the people so weak that their power cannot be challenged.
Corruption exists almost everywhere and bribery is the main way to do business in nearly all fields. India has an entrenched bureaucracy that resists change and stifles development, just out of sheer obstinacy and not wanting to give up any control.
The Congress Party, the oldest in this predominantly Hindu nation, had given its leadership to an Italian Catholic woman simply because as the widow of the last Gandhi prime minister, she carried the family torch, as if family loyalty were still the main basis of political credibility in the country. And such a leader and a party are deemed progressive!
The strange thing is that India is not a banana republic of recent vintage but one of the oldest and most venerable civilizations in the world. Its culture is not trumpeting a militant and fundamentalist religion trying to conquer the world for the one true faith but represents a vaster and more cosmic vision. India has given birth to the main religions that have dominated East Asia historically, the Hindu, Buddhist, Jain and Sikh, which are noted for tolerance and spirituality.
It has produced Sanskrit, perhaps the world’s greatest language.
It has given us the incredible spiritual systems of Yoga and its great traditions of meditation and self-realization.
As the world looks forward to a more universal model of spirituality and a world view defined by consciousness rather than by religious dogma these traditions are perhaps the most important legacy to draw upon for creating a future enlightened civilization.
The irony is that rather than embracing its own great traditions, the modern Indian psyche prefers to slavishly imitate worn out trends in western intellectual thought like Marxism or even to write apologetics for Christian and Islamic missionary aggression. Though living in India, in proximity to temples, yogis and great festivals, most modern Indian intellectuals are oblivious to the soul of the land. They might as well be living in England or China for all they know of their own country.
“They are isolated in their own alien ideas as if in a tower of iron. If they choose to rediscover India, it is more likely to occur by reading the books of western travellers visiting the country, rather than by their own direct experience of the people around them”
Sourced from: https://books.google.co.in/books?id=6KJyDwAAQBAJ&pg=PT26&lpg=PT26&dq=a+defeatist+tendency+exists+in+the+psyche+of+modern+Indians+perhaps+unparalleled+in+any+other+country+today&source=bl&ots=tNEHJDtaKq&sig=ACfU3U3JpGuaFC1d7MeHYpX7M_Qu0XAn7Q&hl=en&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwiCka-VwrDzAhVO73MBHcXDCoEQ6AF6BAgCEAM#v=onepage&q=a%20defeatist%20tendency%20exists%20in%20the%20psyche%20of%20modern%20Indians%20perhaps%20unparalleled%20in%20any%20other%20country%20today&f=false
Now this is a pretty long list of things that have gone wrong in India. And I found it difficult to disagree with most of what was said. I don’t want to try your patience with pages and pages of remedial action. I don’t have the experience in administration to recommend anything constructive in any case.
I’ll make only two points:
Firstly Mahatma Gandhi’s methods of passive non resistance are not going to work to remedy these ills. I have given my views about what is defective in Gandhi’s approach in an earlier blog article. Link is below:
In my opinion the only remedial action that is guaranteed to work is what was recommended by the Chinese sage Confucius. Following is an extract of his teaching from Lin Yutang’s classic book, The Importance of Living.
In this sense, Confucianism connected the question of world peace with the cultivation of our personal lives. The very first lesson that Confucian scholars since the Sung Dynasty have decided should be learned by the child at school contains this passage:
The ancient people who desired to have a clear moral harmony in the world would first order their national life; those who desired to order their national life would first regulate their home life; those who desired to regulate their home life would first cultivate their personal lives; those who desired to cultivate their personal lives would first set their hearts right; those who desired to set their hearts right, would first make their wills sincere; those who desired to make their wills sincere would first arrive at understanding; understanding comes from the exploration of knowledge of things. When the knowledge of things is gained, then understanding is reached; when understanding is reached, then the will is sincere; when the will is sincere, then the heart is set right; when the heart is set right, then the personal life is cultivated; when the personal life is cultivated, then the home life is regulated; when the home life is regulated, then the national life is orderly; and when the national life is orderly; then the world is at peace. From the Emperor down to the common man, the cultivation of the personal life is the foundation for all. It is impossible that when the foundation is disorderly, the superstructure can be orderly. There has never been a tree whose trunk is slender and whose top branches are heavy and strong. There is a cause and a sequence in things, and a beginning and end in human affairs. To know the order of precedence is to have the beginning of wisdom.
The Chinese civilization was based on Confucius’ teachings and it has survived for more than 2,500 years. A system that has survived and flourished for so long must have great merits and deserves our respect and interest. It is more than likely that we will learn something to our benefit.
I’ll end here. Please comment on this article. Feedback from my readers keeps me going.