Tuesday, November 23, 2004
I admit I'm not in a position to judge sincerity, but I guess what I meant to say was that, at best, it was a case of late realization.
You wrote: "And in retrospect, even if it were a "marketing exercise", it is sad to note that that it is a failed campaign for people who use the product do not come out in its support!"
People who use the products? After the great realignment of social forces in India ("dalit" politics, etc), the "lower" castes no longer feel any need to be seen favorably by "Brahmins". Fortunately or unfortunately, they don't care as much today for the respect of "Brahmins". Apart from political empowerment, there are many other reasons for this. So my point was that the reverend Sankaracarya was offering his hand to the untouchable at a time when the untouchable was already up on his feet (somewhat). In that sense, if not insincere, it was at least a little sheepish.
If I may, I would like to reiterate that the fundamental problem with "Hinduism" is much deeper. But we're not going to find it if we intellectualize without real understanding. In a losing situation, there is a tendency to find sociological, psychological, political explanations for problems...and to also craft socio-political "solutions". Yet we all know that social justice, etc is a mere side-effect of internal transformation. Lord Chaitanya also created a socio-political revolution in the areas He touched, but that is only for historians to document. His only credit, (and His parampara's only advertized mission) was to "plunder the storehouse of Love of God and distribute it freely to anyone with an open heart". Not the building of schools and hospitals (which happens anyway).
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