The Us President And Lord Hanuman
We Indians thrive in controversies. And where there is none, we surely create one. Now over the political fall-outs of President Barack Obama, rumours, well orchestrated, are floating that President Obama, the most powerful man in the world is a devotee of Lord Hanuman, the most powerful in the Universe. Is this the reason for Obama’s success in winning people and surviving crises. He could be reciting ‘buddhi heen tanu jaani ke sumiro pavan kumar’, if we are to believe what the Indian media has been saying.
We Indians felt proud, a phoren president believing in Hanuman. One had decried when havans and pujas were performed for his success on the eve of his election, why must we pray for someone we did not know, nor was the country he would be president of very friendly with India. Its tilt was towards Pakistan. But all that is forgiven. The solid evidence of his regard for Lord Hanuman came from the most unexpected quarters—Pratibha Advani. According to a report when L.K. Advani’s daughter Pratibha met President Barack Obama at Indian President’s Dinner, she told him that there was something between them. When the US President asked what was common between them, she replied that like you, we are too devotees of Hanuman. President Obama said “Yes, I always keep a small Hanuman idol of silver with me.” It is said that he took out the idol to show her. Absolutely stunning news! Who could imagine an American President carrying a Hanuman idol with him. This Indian god of the wind must be most travelled one among the pantheon of Indian gods. Does Obama look at the idol before embarking on anything of importance? We will know only when he comes to India next, even as ex-President. Does he recite ‘konahin jaanat sankat mochan naam tiharo.’ Who knows!
The claimants of Obama’s belief in Hanuman, so far, depended on a photo in the Time magazine! It shows the things that Barack Obama carries for good luck, which includes a bracelet belonging to a soldier deployed in Iraq, a gambler’s lucky chit, a tiny monkey god and a tiny Madonna and child. And this was enough for newspapers and television channels in India to almost cram the breaking news, down the throats of readers and viewers. Their focus was on the tiny monkey god and the amazing brazenness in suggesting that Obama, sought blessings of Lord Hanuman, whenever confronted with some complexities. The ingenious Indian media has linked his belief in the prowess of Lord Hanuman to his years in Indonesia. His father was a Kenyan and mother a white woman from Kansas, and their son spent his initial days of his life in the country, where Hinduism is a popular religion. But all these very definitive claims are based on no evidence. Neither the Time magazine nor the photographer has identified the statue as Lord Hanuman. But the tiny monkey god statue that is among the lucky charms of Obama has four hands. In India and Indonesia, Lord Hanuman is rarely depicted having four hands. But in the Thailand version of Ramayana, known as Ramakien, Hanuman is often depicted as having four hands. If it is the statue of Lord Hanuman, then the chances are that it probably represents Hanuman in the Thai Ramakien.
If he does really believe in Hanuman, one can expect from it some beneficial manifestations—for he symbolises selfless devotion and amazing strength, and he is worshipped so widely because it is through him and his monkey brigade that Ram could defeat Ravana.
Once Obama’s belief in Hanuman spreads in the West, its media, businesses and Christian Missionaries, who have put images of Hindu Gods on footwear et al, would not do it.
Lord Hanuman will see to it!