PDA

View Full Version : Sectarian Extremists Versus Jefferson - Yahoo! News



HDFNewsBot
13 July 2007, 08:55 PM
Sectarian Extremists Versus Jefferson (http://news.google.com/news/url?sa=T&ct=us/0-0&fd=R&url=http://news.yahoo.com/s/thenation/20070713/cm_thenation/15213811&cid=0&ei=7x6YRoWTCIO00QGXwPSHAQ)
Yahoo! News - 8 hours ago
"The Senate was opened with a Hindu prayer placing the false god of Hinduism on a level playing field with the one true god, Jesus Christ," it declared. ...


More... (http://news.google.com/news/url?sa=T&ct=us/0-0&fd=R&url=http://news.yahoo.com/s/thenation/20070713/cm_thenation/15213811&cid=0&ei=7x6YRoWTCIO00QGXwPSHAQ)

Agnideva
15 July 2007, 09:39 AM
Sectarian Extremists Versus Jefferson (http://news.google.com/news/url?sa=T&ct=us/0-0&fd=R&url=http://news.yahoo.com/s/thenation/20070713/cm_thenation/15213811&cid=0&ei=7x6YRoWTCIO00QGXwPSHAQ)
Yahoo! News - 8 hours ago
"The Senate was opened with a Hindu prayer placing the false god of Hinduism on a level playing field with the one true god, Jesus Christ," it declared. ... More... (http://news.google.com/news/url?sa=T&ct=us/0-0&fd=R&url=http://news.yahoo.com/s/thenation/20070713/cm_thenation/15213811&cid=0&ei=7x6YRoWTCIO00QGXwPSHAQ)

Thank you Bot, that was a nice article. Clearly those who disrupted the Hindu prayer in the US Senate on Thursday, and those organizations which called for these protests have no idea what the Founding Fathers really stood for.


Thomas Jefferson, the author of the concept that the United States should maintain a "wall of separation" in order to avoid the development of a state religion of the sort that had existed in the monarchies of Europe, was a student of Hinduism. His library included Hindu texts, and when he wrote the Virginia Act for Religious Freedom, which laid the groundwork for the Constitution protection of religious practice and pluralism, he specifically avoided making reference to the Christian faith -- though its adherents dominated the public life of Virginia and other colonies -- because he wanted it to be known that all religions, including Hinduism, were respected and welcomed in the United States.

In his notes on the Virginia statute, Jefferson specifically argued that Hinduism and other faiths would be afforded the full protection and privileges of the act.

Noting the overwhelming rejection by Virginia legislators of an amendment to his statute that proposed to insert a reference to Jesus Christ, Jefferson found "proof that they (the legislators who enacted the measure) meant to comprehend, within the mantle of its protection, the Jew and the Gentile, the Christian and the Mohammedan, the Hindoo and the (non-practicing and disbelieving) infidel of every denomination."

Jefferson's respect for religious pluralism in general, and Hinduism in particular, led him to compare notes with other founders of the American experiment. The third president and his predecessor, John Adams corresponded at some length about their respect for the teachings of the Hindu religion.

It was Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nevada, who invited Rajan Zed to the chamber Thursday. But he did so in the name of Jefferson, Adams and the other founders who believed that America should make no religion supreme but rather should recognize and respect many faiths -- including Hinduism.

Kaos
15 July 2007, 03:30 PM
Sectarian Extremists Versus Jefferson (http://news.google.com/news/url?sa=T&ct=us/0-0&fd=R&url=http://news.yahoo.com/s/thenation/20070713/cm_thenation/15213811&cid=0&ei=7x6YRoWTCIO00QGXwPSHAQ)
Yahoo! News - 8 hours ago
"The Senate was opened with a Hindu prayer placing the false god of Hinduism on a level playing field with the one true god, Jesus Christ," it declared. ...


More... (http://news.google.com/news/url?sa=T&ct=us/0-0&fd=R&url=http://news.yahoo.com/s/thenation/20070713/cm_thenation/15213811&cid=0&ei=7x6YRoWTCIO00QGXwPSHAQ)


Karma eventually will catch up on those who engage in such acts.
I remember the Taliban destroying the Buddha images at Bamiyan, Afghanistan.
It didn't take long afterwards for karma to catch up on them.

satay
15 July 2007, 05:59 PM
First of all, I don't see how this prayer is a 'Hindu' prayer. It seems like a universal request to the divine. Not sure if it even started with invocation of OM.

Secondly, it only shows the cultic mentality of christianity. While christians get all the best treatment from Indian government we get shouted down even for saying a peach prayer!

The behaviour of these people shouting and screaming shows the 'fear' they have of their bible GOD which is completely in line with the mainstream message of the maleccha scripture. I say mainstream because obviously there are members on HDF that have tried to present the non mainstream interpretations.

If Indian hindus ever think of doing this in India, they will be labelled 'hindutva' especially first by other hindus!

I would like to see what other 'christians' think of this shameful behaviour of these so called christian extremists. I don't see any christians condemning this behaviour but I can't help but think that had a hindu done this act how most hindus would be jumping up and down first trying to please the other religions.

Znanna
15 July 2007, 06:28 PM
First of all, I don't see how this prayer is a 'Hindu' prayer. It seems like a universal request to the divine. Not sure if it even started with invocation of OM.

Secondly, it only shows the cultic mentality of christianity. While christians get all the best treatment from Indian government we get shouted down even for saying a peach prayer!

The behaviour of these people shouting and screaming shows the 'fear' they have of their bible GOD which is completely in line with the mainstream message of the maleccha scripture. I say mainstream because obviously there are members on HDF that have tried to present the non mainstream interpretations.

If Indian hindus ever think of doing this in India, they will be labelled 'hindutva' especially first by other hindus!

I would like to see what other 'christians' think of this shameful behaviour of these so called christian extremists. I don't see any christians condemning this behaviour but I can't help but think that had a hindu done this act how most hindus would be jumping up and down first trying to please the other religions.


Namaste,


Unfortunately, there are a vociferous lot of evangelical Protestants (Christian) who think this was a good thing. And, as we enter the political season (did we ever leave?) the "Christian Right" is forming ranks and the neocons are exploiting the theocons.

Fred Thompson is their appointed candidate, although he has yet to announce.

If you want more information on these twisted souls, google "Dobson Christian" or "News with Views".

The same entities which are persuing "church planting" in India also are attempting to convert the USA to their world view through similar processes in many respects. And, many of these are the ardent haters of Islam, too. Go figure.

The Pope mentioned the other day (while preaching about how one needs to be Catholic to go to heaven) that there are something on the order of 28,000 Christian sects. LOL.

Come on, satay, can't you find the irony at least a little humorous?

BTW, I posted the OP article to a board dominated by these "Freepers". I didn't kill the thread, but I've seen no response from the posters calling for "a return to the Christian roots of the US", either :D



ZN

nomar
15 July 2007, 08:09 PM
I hope hinds pay attention to this story.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/07/12/AR2007071202007.html (http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/07/12/AR2007071202007.html)

Senate Prayer Led by Hindu Elicits Protest

http://i.l.cnn.net/cnn/2007/POLITICS/07/12/prayer.protest.reut/art.prayer.protest.sentv.jpg

Senate Prayer Led by Hindu Elicits Protest
Associated Press
Friday, July 13, 2007; Page A07


A Hindu clergyman made history yesterday by offering the Senate's morning prayer, but only after police officers removed three protesters from the visitors' gallery.

Rajan Zed, director of interfaith relations at a Hindu temple in Reno, Nev., gave the prayer that opens each day's Senate session. As he stood at the lectern in a bright orange and burgundy robe, two women and a man began shouting "this is an abomination" and other complaints from the gallery.

Police officers arrested them and charged them disrupting Congress, a misdemeanor. The male protester said "we are Christians and patriots" before police led them away. Police identified the protesters as Ante Nedlko Pavkovic, Katherine Lynn Pavkovic and Christan Renee Sugar. Their home towns were not available.

For several days, the Mississippi-based American Family Association has urged its members to object to the prayer because Zed would be "seeking the invocation of a non-monotheistic god."

Zed, the first Hindu to offer the Senate prayer, began: "We meditate on the transcendental glory of the Deity Supreme, who is inside the heart of the Earth, inside the life of the sky and inside the soul of the heaven. May He stimulate and illuminate our minds."

Zed, who was born in India, was invited by Senate Majority Leader Harry M. Reid (D-Nev.) He defended the choice and linked it to the war debate. "If people have any misunderstanding about Indians and Hindus," Reid said, "all they have to do is think of Gandhi," a man "who gave his life for peace."


Christian extremists disrupt Hindu Senate invocation (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EZ9To30Hz7A)

Agnideva
15 July 2007, 08:53 PM
Namaskar Satay,

First of all, I don't see how this prayer is a 'Hindu' prayer. It seems like a universal request to the divine. Not sure if it even started with invocation of OM.
I thought so too at first sight, but it turns out they were translated Hindu prayers. The first one was the Gayatri mantra, then some Upanishadic prayers. He planned to recite the prayers in Sanskrit, but apparently one cannot say non-English prayers in the US senate. But, I agree he could have begun and ended with an OM. In fact, the same man had started a session of the Nevada state senate back in May with full Sanskrit prayers. He was a big hit there, and then got invited to the US Senate.


I would like to see what other 'christians' think of this shameful behaviour of these so called christian extremists. I don't see any christians condemning this behaviour Yes, the non-extremist religious leaders did not condemn this behavior, but plenty of individuals have in articles, blogs, etc.

OM Shanti,
A.

Agnideva
15 July 2007, 09:14 PM
For several days, the Mississippi-based American Family Association has urged its members to object to the prayer because Zed would be "seeking the invocation of a non-monotheistic god."
According to this organization, God has been very kind to the US thus far, and having a Hindu prayer in the Senate will certainly incur His wrath. It's interesting that God does not anger at disrupting prayers and senate sessions. These sorts of organizations want more God in government, but it means only "their God". :D

OM Shanti,
A.

satay
16 July 2007, 12:17 AM
RNS

WASHINGTON, D.C., July 13, 2007: (HPI note: We include here excerpts from a few more reports on the disrupted Hindu prayer in the US Senate. The only other non-Christian or non-Jew to give a Senate prayer was Wallace Mohammed, a Muslim who recited a prayer in 1992.) Conservative Christian groups protested the first appearance of a guest Hindu chaplain on the Senate floor Thursday (July 12). When Rajan Zed, public relations officer of the Indian Association of Northern Nevada, stepped to the Senate rostrum to pray, protesters began shouting from inside the chamber before he could begin. "Lord Jesus, forgive us, Father, for allowing the prayer of the wicked which is an abomination in your sight," shouted one protester before the U.S. Capitol Police removed three people. Sgt. Kimberly Schneider, a representative for the Capitol Police, said a man and two women from Davidson, N.C., were charged with a misdemeanor count of unlawful conduct for disrupting Congress. Zed went on to pray: "We meditate on the transcendental glory of the Deity Supreme who is inside the heart of the Earth, inside the life of the sky and inside the soul of the heaven."

Pastor Rod Parsley, president of the Columbus, Ohio-based Center for Moral Clarity, said in an interview that Zed's appearance reflects American diversity, and said he had no objections. "My opinion would be that America is the marketplace of ideas and that we should open our doors and our hearts to those of differing religious persuasions than ours, and in a free and open society allow points of views to be heard as loudly and clearly as they can be made," he said.



--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

3. Head Of Christian Right Group Calls Hindu Senate Invocation "Gross Idolatry"
electioncentral.tpmcafe.com

USA, July 12, 2007: (HPI note: electioncentral.tpmcafe.com is a wide-ranging blog site which posted the following item by Eric Kleefeld.) As we reported earlier today, a religious and political milestone of sorts took place early today when a Hindu delivered the morning invocation in the Senate chamber -- only to find the ceremony disrupted by three activists from the Christian Right anti-abortion group Operation Save America.

Well, Election Central has just gotten off the phone with the group's chief, Rev. Flip Benham. And he's hailing the move by the three activists -- while slamming the Hindu's appearance as "gross idolatry."

In the interview, Benham praised the three activists, Ante and Katherine Pavkovic and their daughter Kristen. And he scorned the idea of the Hindu invocation.

"What we have here is just a wonderful example of Christian theology becoming biography in the sacred chamber of the United States Senate, as a Hindu was offering up a prayer to open up the session this morning. And the folks that were there [the Pavkovics] ... waited for the Senate, or a Senator with a backbone, to remind the Hindu that there is one God who made this country great, and his name is Jesus."

The Pavkovics disrupted the ceremony after seeing that no Senator would emerge to challenge the Hindu clergyman's beliefs.

The idea to protest the Hindu's invocation originated in a very organic way, Benham said in the interview. The Pavkovics had come to Washington to protest the proposed hate crimes bill with other activists. When everyone else was headed home, the family found out about the upcoming Hindu presence in the Senate, and realized they could not simply stay silent.

"They thought they needed to go and represent the Lord who made this nation great," Benham said. The event, he said, is emblematic of the modern tendency of "other religions being held on a par with Christianity. Of course, we have said that is not true, that indeed Christianity is one way."

Election Central asked Benham what he thought of Tim Wildmon, president of the far-right American Family Association, who was quoted by CNN condemning the Pavkovic family's behavior. Wildmon told CNN: "We would not ever encourage shouting in the gallery like that, we asked people to contact their Senators to show their disapproval."

Benham said he respects Wildmon as a friend and ally, but he thinks his friend is simply wrong on this matter. "Our answer is," Benham said, "When one stands up in the face of gross idolatry being allowed in the Senate, in the chamber of the United States Senate, it is incumbent on a Christian to stand up and speak the truth. No matter what, we must obey God rather than men."

"When you stand up and are arrested, and the H indu is allowed to go free, this country has gone upside-down," Benham added -- though when asked, he later clarified that he does not believe people of other religions should be arrested for their beliefs. "Now, why are Hindus allowed here? Why are Muslims allowed here? Because we are a nation that's free, built upon the principles of almighty God."

Source: Hinduism Today Electronic News Letter

satay
16 July 2007, 12:21 AM
I can't believe the addiction to "Jesus the Junk"...

America is an ecnomic power not because of sadistic tyrant GOD of christianity, it is great because of the hardwork of minorities of all religions.

When are these junkies going to come out of their cultic cave mentality and start living in the current century?

satay
16 July 2007, 09:53 AM
I invite those members of the forum that are always advicing hindus on HDF on how we should be yet more tolerant and passive, to present their views.

Why the silence on this matter? I will take it that most have been away since it was such a beautiful weekend weather wise.

suresh
17 July 2007, 08:41 AM
Yes, the non-extremist religious leaders did not condemn this behavior, but plenty of individuals have in articles, blogs, etc.
OM Shanti,
A.

Funny how these "moderates" (from both Islam and X) suddenly find their voice, when some priest or mullah is assaulted in India. Frankly, I don't believe that there are moderates in these two cults. Truth be told, these 'moderates' are doing the damage silently, covertly, whilst so-called extremist elements are doing it out in the open.

saidevo
17 July 2007, 10:12 AM
Any reactions from the American President, who calls himself a "born again Christian", or the Catholic Pope at Vatican?

satay
17 July 2007, 10:17 AM
let's not get our hope so high...any reaction from HDF members who are always showing us how to 'love' and how love is the greatest problem solver would be a good start.

I find it very annoying that everyone and their dog feels compelled to give their opinion on anything that any hindu does yet the same people will not condemn this act or even say a single word. Perhaps they are signaling with their silence that this type of behaviour from christians is normal and thus acceptable?

Agnideva
17 July 2007, 10:26 AM
Any reactions from the American President, who calls himself a "born again Christian"
No, nor would I expect any. This event was in the Senate anyway. Then again, I think it's significant that Bush has been conspicuously absent the last two years when the White House held Diwali celebrations.

A.

Agnideva
17 July 2007, 10:35 AM
Funny how these "moderates" (from both Islam and X) suddenly find their voice, when some priest or mullah is assaulted in India. Frankly, I don't believe that there are moderates in these two cults. Truth be told, these 'moderates' are doing the damage silently, covertly, whilst so-called extremist elements are doing it out in the open.

Namaste Suresh,

As far Christian moderates (and apostates) go, there are many. Or at least that's my opinion living in a liberal part of the country. They do speak out, but generally their voices are not heard loudly because most don't engage in sensationalist talk and so don't make the news. The extremist voices are always heard because they like to make more noise and act out specifically so their voices are heard, imho.

A.

Agnideva
17 July 2007, 11:02 AM
An article I read this morning. It is written by a pastor in Tennessee, in America's Bible Belt. He calls the protesters "a disgrace and an utter embarrassment to not only Christianity but to Christians everywhere."

A.



Protesters disrupt first Hindu prayer in Senate
By David W. Shelton
July 15, 2007

On Thursday, July 12, Rajan Zed became the first person to offer a Hindu prayer on the Senate floor. Sadly, the prayer was disrupted by “Christian patriots” who were eventually arrested on the misdemeanor charge of disrupting Congress. This “protest” was an utter disgrace to not only the Senate, but to Christianity as a whole.

Fox News reported:

Zed, who was born in India, was invited by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev. Speaking in the chamber shortly after the prayer, Reid defended the choice and linked it to the war debate.

“If people have any misunderstanding about Indians and Hindus,” Reid said, “all they have to do is think of Gandhi,” a man “who gave his life for peace.”

“I think it speaks well of our country that someone representing the faith of about a billion people comes here and can speak in communication with our heavenly Father regarding peace,” said Reid, a Mormon and sharp critic of President Bush’s Iraq policies.

Now, I don’t think Senator Reid really understands that the Hindu religion doesn’t worship “our heavenly father.” But that’s not the point. His invitation to bring Chaplain Zed to pray on the Senate floor was a first for the Senate. The invitation drew the ire of the American Family Association as well as other fundamentalist groups.

It’s not clear what group the protesters were associated with, but their disruptive shouts were a true embarrassment to Christians everywhere. They yelled from the visitors gallery, “This is an abomination!” and were eventually arrested.

MSNBC reported the content of the prayer as well:

Zed, the first Hindu to offer the Senate prayer, began: “We meditate on the transcendental glory of the Deity Supreme, who is inside the heart of the Earth, inside the life of the sky and inside the soul of the heaven. May He stimulate and illuminate our minds.”

As the Senate prepared for another day of debate over the Iraq war, Zed closed with, “Peace, peace, peace be unto all.”

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. As a Christian, I think that these three protesters are a disgrace and an utter embarrassment to not only Christianity but to Christians everywhere. They should be ashamed of themselves, and I’m glad they were arrested. Sadly, I’m not surprised that this happened.

Of course, the concept of “peace” is offensive to many fundamentalists, which is unfortunate. What concerns me more than anything is the notion that many of today’s Christians have that insists that the United States was founded to be a “Christian nation.”

If this were so, then why are the words “God” or “Bible” completely nonexistent in the Constitution?

Yes, many of the framers were Christian. John Adams and John Jay were both very passionate in their faith. They also understood that faith was a personal matter of the individual. And the individual expressions of faith (indeed forms of Christianity were the most prevalent) was meant to be exactly that: Individual.

When the first amendment was ratified, it clearly stated that “Congress would pass no law respecting the establishment of religion or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.” It would keep the federal government out of the religious affairs of the people. It would also prevent having one religion elevated above any others.

The modern idea of twisting this as a “Christians-only club” is as much a perversion as it would be to say that all of the framers were Christian. Clearly, they were not. More importantly, Christianity as most modern evangelicals understand it did not exist until the early 1800s with the rise of Charles Finney.

As I discussed this once, someone pointed out the final article of the Constitution:

Done in Convention by the Unanimous Consent of the States present the Seventeenth Day of September in the Year of our Lord one thousand seven hundred and Eighty seven and of the Independence of the United States of America…

It seems that some Christians insist that the usage of the phrase “the Year of our Lord…” was indicative that this was intended to be a Christian nation. This is about as logical as insisting that because the sky is blue, this was intended to be a blue-skinned nation. Why is this? Quite simply, it was a tradition of the time. Just as this is the year 2007 A.D.

In fact, the Latin phrase anno domini translates to “the year of our Lord.” This was simply the calendar year—nothing more, and nothing less. It’s about as religious as saying, “God bless you” to a person who’s just sneezed.

Thomas Jefferson wasn’t in the country when the Constitution was written, but his clear approval of the hands-off approach to religion was an indication that he understood it enough to write to the Danbury Baptist association when he was president that the first amendment “erects a wall of separation between church and state.”

Faith was an important part in the lives of early Americans, and each faith was protected. We should be careful not to try to put words in the framers mouths by quoting them out of context and making them say that they intended to found America as a “Christian nation.” Clearly, they did not.

In fact, the Treaty of Tripoli, proudly signed by John Adams (who also co-wrote and signed the Declaration of Independence) in 1796 has a particular statement in article 11:

Art. 11. As the Government of the United States of America is not, in any sense, founded on the Christian religion; as it has in itself no character of enmity against the laws, religion, or tranquillity, of Mussulmen; and, as the said States never entered into any war, or act of hostility against any Mahometan nation, it is declared by the parties, that no pretext arising from religious opinions, shall ever produce an interruption of the harmony existing between the two countries.

There is, however, no question that the Christian faith was deeply rooted in the culture of the late eighteenth century. This was just a few decades after the Great Awakening, during which men like Jonathan Edwards and George Whitefield impacted the colonials through the power of the Holy Spirit in a profound way. Christian historians (including myself) believe that the Awakening prepared the hearts of the colonists for the long, bloody war that came with the Revolution.

One of the phrases I hear a lot is “original intent.” This is something that we have to be very careful of, especially since the “original intent” of the framers was clearly that only white men would have a say in what their country would look like. Radical ideas of women who vote, black men who vote and own property, and the end of slavery were far-reaching pipe dreams as far as the framers knew. Even Washington and Jefferson were slave owners.

The Constitution was written to allow some flexibility in several issues, and its interpretation clearly changes with time. During his 2000 Presidential campaign, Then-Vice President Al Gore spoke of it as a “living and breathing document” that changes with time. This is the opposite extreme. In reality, the constitution is neither rigid nor living. It’s deliberately specific in its language yet deliberately vague in its application.

Where the “original intent” interpretation fails in the relationship with Church and State is that there is little argument that the framers had a Christian worldview. We simply can not apply that same worldview to the multi-cultural society that is in the United States today.

Here in Clarksville, there are literally dozens of different countries represented in its residents. There are Hindu, Muslim, Buddhist, as well as Christian residents. Yes, most of Clarksville’s residents are Christian. But our city is best reflected when we celebrate the spiritual diversity of the region. Such is the same with the Senate.

This really isn’t all that different from last year’s brouhaha over Keith Elliston’s swearing-in ceremony where he placed his hand on a Quran instead of the Bible. Interestingly enough, the copy of the Quran that he used once belonged to Thomas Jefferson (By the way, such ceremonies are common, but are not the “official” swearing in, which is done on the Congress floor en masse).

Clearly, even if it was in the days of the Framers, the United States is clearly no longer a Christian nation. It’s important that we respect the intent of the framers and their flexibility by keeping faith where it belongs: in the churches and hearts of the American people, and out of government. They knew then just as we know now that when government meddles in religious affairs, it will only result in tyranny.

Just imagine what kind of a country those three protesters would have us live in. I sure wouldn’t want any part of it.

http://tinyurl.com/2f8lnl

David W. Shelton is a writer, speaker and activist in Clarksville. He is currently pastor of Christian Community Church of Clarksville, Chair of Clarksville Pride, Inc., and serves on the Clarksville Human Relations Commission.

sm78
17 July 2007, 11:34 AM
Sitting in India I am finding this rather funny.

Why should American Senate call a Hindu to say prayers ?? Hindu's don't make up any significances portion of the population in any way I think ?? It doesn't serve politics as well from any direction.

And as a Hindu why should I expect a foreign country much of which has been traditionally founded on Christianity to show any respect at all to a faith which languishes in its own land ?? If not some strange publicity biz whose rationale I am failing to grasp, calling a Hindu priest to pray in Senate by itself is an immense broad mindedness, if you ask me, something from which Hindus can learn a bit.

Why are we getting heated on this, when in this land of 80 million hindus even singing a national prayer which mentions the land as goddess becomes a national sin ?? Where all prayers and connection to its own culture has been ruthlessly uprooted by the Hindus themselves from national and social life?? When parents line up behind the gates of a Christian missionary school to admit their children and take pride that their kids will no nothing about his/her own dharma.

We cannot blame Christians or their country for acting soundly just because we haven't done so for a thousand years.

Agnideva
17 July 2007, 02:03 PM
Namaskar Singhi,


Sitting in India I am finding this rather funny. Why should American Senate call a Hindu to say prayers ?? Hindu's don't make up any significances portion of the population in any way I think ?? It doesn't serve politics as well from any direction. Yes Singhi, it is rather funny compared to the larger problems in India. But, I guess I would say it is an important issue for Hindu Americans because it is a gesture of goodwill from the government. It is an acknowledgement (not that is really needed) that Hinduism is a real religion, and found on American soil (even if number of practicing Hindus is a small percentage of the population). America is a country where cultures, traditions and religions blend together, and while the Abrahamic religions are often mentioned as "great world religions", we see many times there is an absence in the mention of Dharma religions.


And as a Hindu why should I expect a foreign country much of which has been traditionally founded on Christianity to show any respect at all to a faith which languishes in its own land ?? Well the real debate is much larger in this country between religious fundamentalists and the non-fundamentalists. There have been many issues over the last few years regarding separation of church and state, prayers in public schools, abortion rights, ten commandments in courtrooms, the list could go on and on. This is just another incident which just happens to involve Hinduism. The non-fundamentalists like to say/show that America is a pluralistic society and make gestures of goodwill towards minority religions like Buddhism, Hinduism, Islam, etc. The fundamentalists like to say that America was founded under Judeo-Christian principles and should remain so.


calling a Hindu priest to pray in Senate by itself is an immense broad mindedness, if you ask me, something from which Hindus can learn a bit.Yes, I agree with that.


We cannot blame Christians or their country for acting soundly Again the issue goes back to whether America is a Christian nation, or a nation of mostly Christians. According to our constitution, it is a secular democracy, but fundamentalists argue that mere mention of God indicates that the founding fathers stood for a nation under the Judeo-Christian God. The debate continues ...

OM Shanti,
A.

Kaos
17 July 2007, 04:15 PM
Is it any wonder that America currently (which represents the West) is locked in a mortal battle with Islam?

It is the result of karma which those who engage in desecrating sacred images, including this recent disruption in the Senate regarding these prayers, are sowing for themselves.

The Jews and the Muslims have been locked in bitter conflict for ages because of actions they have done againsts each other.

For the same reason, America and the West will have to reap the fruits of the negative karma they have accumulated throughout history. That is the universal law.