Sunday, September 25th, 2022 22:24:37

Carrying Out Conversion Missionary Style

Updated: March 14, 2015 1:15 pm

Seeing is believing and literally one can witness this in the distant dense forests, rural areas and hilly Indian tracts. I feel pity for the evangelists who are engaged in exploiting our poor people and especially our tribal brethren in the name of service and providing education. Indians are simple, sober, and straight-forward and have great respect for their cultural ethos, religious faiths and respect other faiths. That is why the alien thoughts easily make Indians an easy prey for religious conversion. There is no denying the fact that Sanatan Dharma is the only unifying code that binds the whole universe as one family. Divisiveness has been inducted in the Hindu society conspicuously by the so-called religious traitors, who always try to create confusion in the society in the name of God and religion. And they have been successful to some extent. The recent comments of RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat on the missionaries are nothing new and the whole society that believes in Indianness (Bharatiyata) should support him.

“When the missionary of another religion goes to them, he goes like a vendor of goods. He has no special spiritual merit that will distinguish him from those to whom he goes. He does however possess material goods, which he promises to those who will come to his fold.”

(Harijan: April 3, 1937)

“Only the other day a missionary descended on a famine area with money in his pocket, distributed it among the famine stricken, converted them to his fold, took charge of their temple and demolished it. This is outrageous.”

(Harijan: November 5, 1937)

“I hold that proselytizing under the cloak of humanitarian work is unhealthy to say the least. It is most resented by people here. Religion after all is a deeply personal thing. It touches the heart. Why should I change my religion because a doctor who professes Christianity as his religion has cured me of some disease, or why should the doctor expects such a change whilst I am under his influence?”

(Young India: April 23, 1931)

Almost unconsciously, Hindu society in India has been drawn into a battle which is literally a matter of life and death. This is a war that has been forced upon Hindu society. Every section of Hindu society must play a role in this struggle. This is a war it must fight and win, if it wants to survive. Every Muslim and Christian living in India was originally a Hindu. They were either forced or bribed to change their religion.One thing is common to mullahs, missionaries and Marxists of India, when they are given a dose of their own medicine, they cry foul. They go about their nefarious activities, quoting freedom of thought, belief, expression and conscience. Ties with these extreme sections are purely a one way street. Whenever there is any incident of someone leaving their fold, they cry foul and the event is denounced as an assault on freedom of thought. In its present context, the issue is both social and political.

The brouhaha raised by the Church and its cronies against return of a handful of people from Islam and Christianity to Hinduism (rightly termed as <Ghar Wapsi>) is in line with this thinking. By demonstrating that religious conversion is a game that two can play, RSS has succeeded in putting this burning issue at the centre of public debate. The numbers may be few, but they have tremendous symbolic value. In the matter of Ghar Wapsi, Mohan Bhagwat has said that Hindu society is rightfully claiming back its lost children who had been taken away by force, fraud and allurement. His comments have drawn sharp reactions precisely because they are too accurate for the comfort of the proselytizers.

Bringing back Muslim and Christian converts to their ancestral religion is not the same thing as conversion by missionaries. The two are based on entirely different premises, driven by very different agendas and have diametrically opposite consequences on the society and the state. They are as different as healing is from wounding, rejoining is from rupturing and strengthening is from subverting. The church claims the right to freedom of religion, by which it means its own right to convert others, and never the other way round. What it forgets is that if missionaries have a right to preach the Gospel, Hindus too have a right to defend their religion.

Christianity and Islam both use the language of religion, but their objectives are purely political. They aim at conquering the world by decimating other traditions, converting people and capturing territories. Conversion of even one person causes grave disruptions. His family is torn apart and tensions erupt in his community. After conversion, and sometimes even during the process of conversion itself, the missionaries make the person do things that grievously offend his original religion. He is asked to repudiate and denounce the gods and rituals in which he grew up, to do things which are forbidden in his original religion or community—eating beef, for instance.

The government of India should recognise the threat to national security posed by conversions, spell it out publicly and move to ban them. It should choke the flow of foreign funds to organisations linked to church or Islamic movements and deny visas to ‘social workers’, preachers and other busybodies from foreign countries. These funds and men should be recognised as sources of trouble and prevented from entering the country. Like a slow but deadly poison, conversions are sapping the lifeblood of Hinduism. However great and noble Hinduism may be, if there are no Hindus who practice it, it will be consigned to the museums and monuments like several other religions of the ancient world. Long before that Hindus will have disintegrated into an amorphous mass of humanity and India as an old civilisation will have disappeared.

Deepak Kumar Rath

Deepak Kumar Rath

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