Here’s the news article that is of the title of this post.
This news is ridiculous, but the fact is that people of the Christian faith, especially those in the position of maintaining the order of the Church, are very afraid that their religion will be taken over, stampeded upon or thrashed down by another rival religion. Why are they so afraid, if what they have in their religion is solid? How can there be any room for confusion, by just doing some simple spiritual exercise like Yoga?
For the past two years or so, everyone of my friends and family members know that I was a vegetarian. Yes, you’ve read correctly. I used the past tense. I was a vegetarian. I do owe an explanation as to why I reverted to non-vegetarian diet because many of my closest friends still don’t know.
I converted to vegetarian diet mainly because of health reasons. And for the same health reasons I’ve converted back to non-vegetarian. My being vegetarian did help me a lot. It helped me to control my cravings for chicken and fish. I used to only eat chicken and fish to a small extent, and that too only those that were home-cooked. I don’t like mutton, neither am I a fan of other meat varieties. Therefore, it wasn’t really a big leap for me to convert to veg. The journey was alright, although I did have some difficulties finding for food. I was still eating egg, and that saved me a little.
Still, I had some surprised non-veg friends and family members. They got used to me eating only veg. It helped me spiritually to a certain extent as well, as I am a spiritual person as well.
After a while, starting this year, I had started to experience iron deficiency. Moreover, my periods were becoming very irregular. I had no other reason to fall back on, except for the iron deficiency. Therefore, I had to revert to non-veg. It was not an abrupt reversion. It was slow, starting with fish, and then chicken made at home.
I feel good right now, because the difficulty of finding veg food for me is gone. My family and friends are happy. I am also not craving for chicken or fish whenever I go out. I wasn’t fussy when I was a veg. Neither am I now. I go out without worrying whether I will get veg food. I am alright with either kind. And that is what I want to be like. Dependent on nothing.
As Langdon moved toward the first recess, he passed the tomb of one of Italy’s Catholic kings. The sarcophagus, like many in Rome, was askew with the wall, positioned awkwardly. A group of visitors seemed confused by this. Langdon did not stop to explain. Formal Christian tombs were often misaligned with the architecture so they could lie facing east. It was an ancient superstition that Langdon’s Symbology 212 class had discussed just last month.
“That’s totally incongruous!” a female student in the front had blurted when Langdon explained the reason for east-facing tombs. “Why would Christians want their tombs to face the rising sun? We’re talking about Christianity… not sun worship!”
Langdon smiles, pacing before the blackboard, chewing an apple. “Mr Hitzrot!” he shouted.
A young man dozing in back sat up with a start. “What! Me?”
Langdon pointed to a Renaissance art poster on the wall. “Who is that man kneeling before God?”
“Um… some saint?”
“Brilliant. And how do you know he’s a saint?”
“He’s got a halo?”
“Excellent, and does that golden halo remind you of anything?”
Hitzrot broke into a smile. “Yeah! Those Egyptian things we studied last term. Those… um… sun disks!“
“Thank you, Hitzrot. Go back to sleep.” Langdon turned back to the class. “Halos, like much of Christian symbology, were borrowed from the ancient Egyptian religion of sun workship. Christianity is filled with examples of sun worship.”
“Excuse me?” the girl in the front said. “I go to Church all the time, and I don’t see much sun worshipping going on!”
“Really? What do you celebrate on December twenty-fifth?”
“Christmas. The birth of Jesus Christ.”
“And yet according to the Bible, Christ was born in March, so what are we doing celebrating in late December?”
Langdon smiles. “December twenty-fifth, my friends, is the ancient pagan holiday of sol invictus – Unconquered Sun – coinciding with the winter solstice. Its that wonderful time of year when the sun returns, and the days start getting longer.”
Langdon took another bite of apple.
“Conquering religions,” he continued, “often adopt existing holidays to make conversion less shocking. It’s called transmutation. It helpes people acclimatize to the new faith. Worshipers keep the same holy dates, pray in the same sacred locations, use a similar symbology… and they simply substitute a different god.”
Now the girl in the front looked furious. “You’re implying Christianity is just some kind of… repackaged sun worship!“
“Not at all. Christianity did not borrow only from the sun worship. The ritual of Christian canonization is taken from the ancient ‘god-making’ rite of Euhemerus. The practice of ‘god-eating’ – that is, Holy Communion – was borrowed from the Aztecs. Even the concept of Christ dying for our sins is arguably not exclusively Christian; the self-sacrifice of a young man to absolve the sins of his people appears in the earliest tradition of the Quetzalcoatl.”
The girl glared. “So, is anything in Christianity original?”
“Very little in any organized faith is truly original. Religions are not born from scratch. They grow from one another. Modern religion is a collage… an assimilated historical record of man’s quest to understand the divine.
“Um… hold on,” Hitzrot ventures, sounding awake now. “I know something Christina that’s original. How about our image of God? Christian art never portrays God as the hawk sun god, or as an Aztec, or as anything weird. It always shows God as an old man with a white beard. So our image of God is original, right?
Langdon smiled. “When the early Christian converts abandoned their former deities – pagan gods, Roman gods, GReek, sun, Mithraic, whatever – they asked the church what their new Christian God looked like. Wisely, the church chose the most feared, powerful… and familiar face in all of recorded history.”
Hitzrot looked skeptical. “An old man with a white, flowing beard?”
Langdon pointed to a heirarchy of ancient gods on the wall. At the top sat an old man with a white, flowing beard. “Does Zeus look familiar?”
The class ended right on cue.
I love this excerpt. I don’t know how much of it is true. But still, it proves two things for me.
(1) Christianity is man-made and therefore, the post of “God” has been imposed upon. It has been transmuted to suit the converts’ requirements and acceptance of Christianity and nothing else.
(2) Christianity too gives some form of importance to image of God and so on. It is not only the Hindus who worship images. So they have no right to point fingers.
Imagine how opposite Hinduism is. I am clearly being biased here, or so you might think. However, any logical person would arrive at the conclusion that Hinduism, unlike Christianity, had never changed its fundamental precepts to suit the needs of the converts. It has been sincere through and through. Unlike Christianity, Islam or Judaism, God in Hinduism has never been seen as being separated from the Universe that was created by God. Indeed, everything is God, the Universe is God, the energy that holds everything together is indeed God. Hinduism is simply brilliant.
I am fascinated with Hinduism because it made me see the world as it is, with the things we superimpose upon it.
Wow… I never thought this day would come this fast! On 10th July 2010, Saturday, at 10am in NUS UCC was my Commencement Ceremony. I am now officially graduated from NUS, with a Bachelors Degree in Life Sciences, Pass with merit. So I guess its the end of the journey? Apparently not, according to a lot of people. It is the commencement of a new chapter in your life.
But I see it as an end to my joyful days in life. Friends have all scattered off and gone in different directions, becoming busy in their own lives. Have to get a job, have to get a house, have to get married, etc, etc… Life moves on, in different directions though. I don’t know if I will ever meet some of my friends after that evening. And if I do, then I know for sure that those friends will be with me for long!
I don’t know how all those times went by. Everything seemed like it just started yesterday. I simply loved my time in NUS, especially the parts I spent with my friends. Not the stressful times in exam halls and labs! I really will miss them all. But at this point of time, I really have to thank my friends for making it a wonderful time in NUS! I thank Kasturi, Chanta, Mathu, Jayu, most of all!! I know we girls will stick together for a long time to come! Thanks for being there for me always! 🙂 I love you all!!!
I have a lot of people to thank. But none of them will be reading this blog though. So I am only thanking people who will be reading this post 🙂 I had a wonderful 3 years of my life! Thanks girls! 🙂
If you see the girl turning clockwise, your right hemisphere dominates:
So if this is you, then you are highly creative, you use your imagination, feelings and perception of space, you are sensitive to symbols and images, you enjoy exploring the future and thinking philosophically…
If you see the girl turning anti clockwise, you use your left hemisphere:
And if this is you, then you are a logical thinker, you rely on realism, words and language. you are attracted by maths and science, knowledge, and specifics…
If you manage to see it turning in the both directions:
You are both a left-brainer and a right-brainer. But the first direction you see in the ballerina is what you predominantly are. You can try to change the direction of the ballerina spinning though. I did it the first time, was difficult. But it comes easily with practice. 🙂
I usually wonder sometimes if I am addicted to the internet. I seem to be spending a lot of time sitting glued to the laptop than go out and have some good time elsewhere. But for the whole of the weekend, I didn’t sit glued to my laptop all the time. Some times I do get out of my room and do something else at home. But still when I get back to my room, the first thing I do is on my laptop.
Not only then, the first thing I do when I wake up every morning is to on my laptop. It has become like an automated habit of mine, just like brushing your teeth and showering in the morning. I am also happy whenever I come online, after spending a long time doing something else. So am I addicted?
Then I further thought about this… I like youtube-ing, facebook-ing, blogging, and sometimes watching movies online too. This is all I do. And yet, I feel like I got addicted to the net, and I wonder if I would ever be able to live without the computer… It also makes me wonder if this is good or bad.
My sister is forever glued to her laptop. After observing her, I wouldn’t want to do the same to my child in the future. I want my child to be more sociable and closer to the family, also doing his/her best in studies. Not sitting in front of the laptop, forever on the internet. God only knows what he/she is vulnerable to on the net! There are both good and bad things online!!
Many out there today, especially teenagers, are badly addicted to the internet. This was where I found out more about it. Take a look:
Do watch this and the following 4 more parts of it. Interesting show! 🙂
It is amazing that films like Vinnaithaandi Varuvaaya, Ayirathil Oruvan, Raavanan, etc. never make it above par in any part of India. Exactly what is wrong with such films? Yes, its true that when you first watch these films, you go like, ‘what the..?’ But when you think deeper of it, many new attempts have been made in various aspects of movie-making. The imagination, the art, the screenplay, the cinematography, and so on. Many attempts are being made to improve Tamil Film Industry and its decomposing standards.
But the story is totally different when it comes to people’s opinions. They have already been ‘conditioned’ to like cheesy, commercial films like Sura, Villu, Singam, etc. that have nothing new in it, are heavily stereotyped, and commercialised to sell like hot cakes! Then it is ‘of course’ that people prefer these kinda films as compared to ‘art movies’ like those stated in the beginning of this post.
Just imagine the kind of hard work, imagination, creativity and dedication that has gone into making Raavanan. Would any film director of these commercial movies (I don’t even know their names!) be able to take such a story like Raavanan’s and picturise it so beautifully?? Even though the story is something that we know of, you would be surprised of how many people (let alone Indians!) have no clue as to what Ramayana is all about!! It takes talent, imagination, creativity, and a gifted vision to make such a movie possible.
It is true that Oscar-winning movies are never really most-watched before it wins an Oscar, but after it does, MANY people watch it and it suddenly becomes the most-watched movie! It seems that people like to stick with what others like, and are never really bold enough to form their own opinions and views, no matter how diametrically opposed they are to that which the society deems as right. What a sad case!
So here is it… I like movies that I mentioned above, and to top it up, I like Eeram, Yaavarum Nalam, etc. etc. Any movie that doesn’t belong to the category of commercial entertainers… These movies stand in my mind longer than the commercial ones, which I do watch also, but the instant I leave the theatre or finish watching the movie, I forget about it. Those movies are only 3-hours of pure entertainment, nothing more. Something like a one-night-stand versus a long-term relationship!!
… I want to become nothing… go into nothingness… I don’t want to feel anything… I don’t want to think anything… I don’t want to know anything… I don’t want to do anything!
I wish I could just jump down and drown in my own world, in my own dreams, and never come back to reality. It sucks!
Thank God I have a little fear for heights. Thank God there is no river nearby my house. Otherwise, I would have jumped down into any one of them, whenever I think about nothing in life giving you the happiness you need…
I know I am not the only one who’s feeling this. I wouldn’t even be feeling like this, if I were a poverty-stricken person like in Africa or India. I would have more pressing matters in my mind than to think of how uneventful life is…
I wish I know how to be free of all the shackles in life………..