For the past few years, a huge business is being run in the name of Indian Culture and Hindu Culture . Their representations on Indian/Hindu culture is both absurd and annoying.These sene’s consider Valentine day celebration to be against Hindu belief, thus against India’s ethos, as if India is only about Hindus! Valentine’s day on Feb 14th is part of a Christian belief system, of celebrating one of their saints St. Valentine. And Christianity is certainly one of the main Indian religions. Indians do Celebrate Christmas, and we do have a holiday on that day – don’t we? So much for Valentine’s day not being part of Indian culture.
So, their argument will come down to – couples courting each other before marriage is not part of Hindu Culture. This argument too does not stand the test of reason, when we look at our heritage from the prism of literature.
The native name of India is Bharata. This nation is named after its founder King Bharata, who started the Bharata dynasty of Mahabharat. Bharata in Sanskrit means “one who is engaged in search for knowledge” or someone who gains and maintains knowledge.He was born to Dushyanta and Shakuntala, out of a wed lock (What was then called a Gandharva Vivaha – an approximate equivalent of eloped – Love Marriage). They did not seek the blessings of their parents, neither inform anyone else. They had a brief courtship, accepted each other and went and had the baby, and Dushyanta returned to his palace – forgot about Shakuntala (due to a curse) and refused to accept Bharata as his son! Finally, everything is sorted out, Dushyanta accepts Bharata and Bharata went on to become a great emperor who founded the Country now called India.Here is the Family tree of Bharata.
There is a parallel line of the Great Rishi (sage) Vasista, which has a interplay with the family line of Bharata. It starts with Rishi Parashar, who is Grandson of Vasista.
Satyavati, who before her marriage to Shantanu (Great Grad son of Bharata), used to help her foster dad, who was a boatman, who made a living ferrying people across the river Yamuna. Once Parashar was being ferried by Satyavati across Yamuna. Parashar fell to the charms of Satyavati, and wanted to make love to her. Parashara told her that she was destined to give birth to a very great person from this liaison. After some pursuation and agreeing to the conditions Satyavati put, they did unite (Without even the pretext of Gandharva Vivaha) , and a son was born of that union. He was named Vyasa, who wrote the Mahabharat and some texts even credit Vedas to him! Whichever way you want to turn the argument, Vyasa will be an illegitimate child born out of a relation that doesn’t have a name, but that is not how Hindu’s treat him. He is accepted as a great scholar and Saint.
Let us understand the concept of “Gandharva Vivaha”, which is what led to the birth of Bharata. It is nothing but a union of two adults by their own consent, without anyone elses blessings! It was an accepted form of Marriage in Indian Customs more than 3500 years ago!!We should be proud of our heritage.
Hinduism is a great religion that permitted every belief system and every philosophy, because they are also part of the knowledge. For example, The Cārvāka system named after the author of Brahaspataya Sutra, is one such philosophy that’s part of Hindu Belief, where the atheism (Nastika) is an integral part. The jainism and Buddism are classified under this thought system.In a democratic republic, such as India, everyone is free to follow their religion & faith and a chosen lifestyle, as long as it does not impinge on the freedom of another individual to lead their life peacefully.
What the various Senes (Militias) around India are doing is nothing but denial of such liberty. Their fundamental claims to represent Hindu belief system doesn’t stand the test of logical reasoning (Tarka Shastra) – which is what the great revivalist of Hindu religion – Adi Shankaracharya – followed to convince his opponents of his Advaita philosophy.
The leaders of these militia’s are nothing but crude, lumpen and out of control mafias. The political parties and leaders who support them do not certainly understand or represent the Hindu Philosophy – for their reasoning doesn’t have the foundation of Logic.
Science is a Latin word for ‘Knowledge’. It can’t be a coincidence that Bharata means the one who Maintains the ‘knowledge’.
So, quest of Science (Knowledge), which is derived out of Logic, is our true culture. It is the very meaning of our country’s name.