So many times, people, who exhibit faith in Hinduism are called right-winged, and I am certainly not an exception. Thankfully, unlike those who have to deal with this dilemma every day, I am proud of my faith, my religion- proud of being a Hindu. Yes, for me Hinduism is a faith, a way of life as I call it, certainly more than a religion, as it focuses on enriching your existence with superior form of knowledge.
Hinduism has a philosophical approach and a supporting scripture dedicated to each aspect of human existence. No other religion in the world can boast of such a vast wealth of knowledge. Our sacred texts are the oldest, but they still act as a guide to almost every modern day-to-day problem. No wonder, they have influenced other religions including Buddhism, Sikhism, and Jainism too. Our Vedas (meaning Knowledge), which help us gain not only knowledge about the past also tell us how to lead the future by imparting deeper insight to attain wisdom.
Vedas knowledge is not limited to teaching sciences like healing, astrology, and mathematics but they also cover everything right from how a ruler should conduct himself to how a householder must conduct himself. Every aspect of human life is already worked upon and has been formulated in Vedas making it easier for the common man to adhere to and thus live a happy life. The Upnishadas describe how the soul can be united with the ultimate truth as well as the ultimate doctrine of Karma- the cause and effect. In fact, the ultimate goal of Hinduism is to attain moksha by practicing good karma and doing it while leading a happy life.
Despite being so practically laid out, Hinduism is certainly the most secular of all the religions in the world. Here’s why:
No Hindu ruler ever broke mosques or other holy places. Nor did they force people to change their religion. Even when we are the oldest religion in the world, we never forcefully spread it to other parts of the world. Though we were in majority, we gave equal rights and special privileges to other religions when India got independence. Why being intellectually inclined means being silent to exodus of Kashmiri pundits from the valley but feeling threatened on the simple mention of cow.
Only Hindus can befriend the people, who are comfortable cursing and making fun of Hindu gods, goddesses and deities without having any grudge. Some of us are so awfully humble that we even shy away from supporting Hindu religious leaders openly for the simple fear of being called ‘right winged’.
We have a system wherein we are teaching Bible and Quran in schools and madrasas, but refraining from teaching such varied, beautiful, and practical scriptures for the fear of being called ‘communal’. Isn’t this akin to denying a vast treasure house of knowledge and information to our present generations? Are we so afraid? Do we fear bringing power through knowledge, or bringing strength through truth in the present world? Are we afraid of being proud Hindus? Are we afraid of Hinduism? Think again.