Insightful newsletter of Drishtikone: Issue #115 - The Chinese Domino; Pagan and Hindu Parallels
“Never throw the first punch. If you have to throw the second, try to make sure they don't get up for a third.” ― Brandon Sanderson, Steelheart
Civilizational battles are waged over many generations. Whether they are to build one or destroy another. And, they do not happen with any fireworks going off.
Those who have patience, tremendous patience, and an eternal view of things keep working on themselves and those around to bring a positive change. One day, the positivity transforms itself into a norm and takes root.
It is one step at a time.
That is how old, wise and powerful civilizations like the Greek, the Indian and the Chinese civilizations were built.
Both, the Greek and the Chinese civilizations were destroyed by people from within. When Mao Zedong started the bloody “Cultural Revolution”, which was to destroy the very culture which defined the Chinese Civilization, he destroyed more than some ancient customs. When the Christians in Europe destroyed the Pagan culture of the Greeks they destroyed more than just a few Gods.
Mao and the Christians destroyed ancient wisdom, patience, and knowledge that was cumulative, assimilative, inclusive and open.
They created closed, insular and aggressive societies.
Aggression, domination, destruction, and death became morally justified.
That is the battle at hand today.
How does a Civilizational ethos of India tackle the onslaught of such insularity?
the Chinese domino
A major change in policy and engagement has happened between China and Taiwan. China considers Taiwan as part of its own territory. It was sending jets and intruding Taiwanese air space for the last few days.
Today, Taiwan shot down the Chinese jet. It was the Chinese People’s Liberation Army Air Force (PLAAF) Su-35 and the Chinese pilot is in the custody of the Taiwanese military. (Source)
Meanwhile, another place - Inner Mongolia - is going through its own strife because of the Chinese edict on changing the language of instruction from the Mongolian language to Mandarin. The protests there have escalated as well.
It is called “Domino effect”. One small change and it can lead to many subsequent events which can bring down and entire empire. Perestroika (economic restructuring) that was started by Mikhail Gorbachev set in motion events which dismantle not just the USSR but the entire Soviet Bloc.
For the last many decades, the West, specifically the US leadership, has created a halo around China.
They have treated China’s many crimes - of stealing intellectual property, copying technology, buying strategic assets, creating artificial islands in the South China Sea illegally - as normal conduct. This had emboldened the Chinese and they in turn started usurping the sovereignty of the other nations.
This had to stop.
When India called their bluff at Galwan, and then at Finger 8, and Finger 4 and sent ships into the South China Sea to pressurize the Chinese, it gave a strong message to everyone.
That China is a paper tiger.
The likes of Obama, Hillary, Several European leaders had inexplicably shown a lot of deference for this weak force. One is not sure why.
But it was all a big falsehood!
This abusive force could be looked into the eye and given back in its own currency.
And dominos have started tumbling!
Meanwhile, the Indian Defence Minister, Shri Rajnath Singh is in Russia for a meeting with the Chinese.
At the same time, the Army Chief is with his “boys” in Ladakh.
The message is clear. There is no backing down.
landslide to Biden or else!
Donald Trump is obviously not the greatest leader that the US has seen. He has a huge ego and other issues. But what the society faces today is another more potent disaster - the Democrats. Just as we were worried about the US sovereignty when Trump was being investigated; we are even more worried because the deep inroads that the Islamists, Chinese, and anarchists have made into the so-called liberal crowd look far scarier.
For example, check this story put out by the Washington Post. Basically, it says that if Joe Biden does not win by a landslide, violence and riots will start around the country.
Really? So if the vote is anything short of a landslide win for Biden, the entire country will be ransacked?!
That they are saying this, in a major publication, is tremendously scary in itself. But even more scary is that this narrative has been accepted as a virtual fact.
The last I checked, the US was still a democracy. A flawed one absolutely but at least one where things do change. To create moral equivalents out of your political stances is not democracy. It is fascism.
And that is exactly what the modern-day woke liberalism has done to the global polity. It just doesn’t know why people are rejecting it and why it keeps losing despite clogging the air-waves and media print.
It just didn’t realize that its own mojo has become so hedonistic and hegemonistic that even Trump now looks like a victim in front of their blistering aggression.
the parallels in evangelical strategy against “Pagans” and Hindus
The narrative for Hinduism in the western world was set by the missionaries who were reporting on India. And, they used the very template that they had used to describe, box, and then destroy the Greek civilization by calling everyone a “Pagan”. The vilification, the abuses that they had were very similar.
This was the narrative that the kids were taught in school textbooks in the US. Like this one.
From one of the most popular geography textbooks of the period, Mitchell’s “A System of Modern Geography” (Source: Instagram\@Hindoohistory)
The reporting in the newspapers was also in the same vein. Characterize the “Hindoo” as some barbaric, quaint, buffoon, with superstitions and laughable customs. Even the fact that the Hindus were celebrating so many festivals became a topic of abuse. Imagine someone celebrating life so fully! So backward!
from Sunbury American and Shamokin Journal, 1841 (Source: Instagram\@Hindoohistory)
This is not without context. So let us understand why this was being done.
When the Christians started dismantling and destroying the Greek and the Roman civilization, they first clubbed them as Pagans, using derogatory language which made it easy to demonize and justify any crime that was committed against them thereafter.
One of the arguments used against the Greek/Roman “pagans” was also their festivals.
Read this - (Source: The Darkening Age; by Catherine Nixey)
Once “Pagans” had been demonized enough, then their festivals could be characterized as evil events.
And using abundant “creative liberty” they came to a point where they painted them in socially immoral colors. Just the way every imperialist power and aggressive religion has done. For example, Islamists do call pre-Islamic Arabs as barbarians and speak of how Islam “freed the women.” When interestingly Mohammad’s first wife Khadijah bint Khuwaylid was a 40+-year-old independent business-woman who married a man of her own choice. An occurrence that probably hasn’t happened in Arabic lands since the advent of Islam.
The important point here is that when the abuse is normalized and ingrained within the minds of people, the dismantling and destroying that way of life becomes easy.
So, when you see the JNU folks abusing Durga, calling her a prostitute - one should very clearly know where this is going next.
And, when any protests against this demonization are further abused as anti-free speech, be very clear what is at stake here. The Hindu/Dharmic civilizational ethos.
Raja Dahir - the first king who fought the Arab invasion
Raja Dahir was the first king to have given the first resistance against the Arab invasion into India. Tarek Fatah shares the story of Raja Dahir and also the context of why he needs to be remembered and celebrated in India.
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