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India and you

Manish Hatwalne
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Joined: Sep 22, 2001
Posts: 2579

Originally posted by Thomas Paul:
Right, it only happened once. How many times recently have 3,000 people in India been killed in a single terrorist attack? This was a new situation for us and we needed time to adjust. And we have adjusted very nicely. As far as the attack against a Sikh (happened once in Arizona) the perpetrators were arrested and are charged with murder. The US has been very open to Muslims and I will bet that most will report that they have encountered little prejudice.

I am not at all belittling the tragedy, all the world understands the agony. But since you have experienced this stuff recently, perhaps you can understand the agony and extrapolate to empathise with India. Believe me, when it happens repeatedly (i hope and pray you NEVER experience it), ppl do feel insecure and attack. And there is immense animosity due to that. Unfortunately such things are exploited by politician and there are riots. Somehow instead of singling out the antisocial elements, ppl (all over the world) generalize the entire community and hatred is spread. And it traces back to partition (1947) or maybe even before that. There's no count, coz such incidents are not few. And this is what I was trying to explain.
Many among us are sensible to live with it, but usually incidents which make headline are the violent ones.
- Manish
[ February 13, 2004: Message edited by: Manish Hatwalne ]
Paul McKenna
Ugly Redneck
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Joined: Jul 08, 2000
Posts: 1006
Originally posted by Thomas Paul:
So what if I start a new religion that says you MUST have seven wives? Will you change the law for me?
What if I am an atheist and believe that the limitations on wives are based on stupid religious beliefs and should have nothing to do with any constraint on me?

You are right. That is a very big flaw in the Indian system and who is trying to do something about it? BJP! They wanted to bring out a uniform civil code for all Indian citizen irrespective of their religion and who is fighting against it? Minorities.. they complain that a uniform civil code will be equivalent to having them follow the Hindu religion. They use this legislation to give the impression that BJP is imposing a Hindutva agenda. I dont have exact knowledge about the uniform civil code but of what I read about it from the news papers it seems to be a replica of western laws.


Commentary From the Sidelines of history
Joe Pluta
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Joined: Jun 23, 2003
Posts: 1376
And considering how the Indians feel about all things Indian, I was pleasantly surprised by their mostly restrained, civil defense.
I was pleased by the interaction on both sides of the conversation. I believe the restraint was borne of respect. Heated discussion occurs if you believe in something passionately, and if you don't believe passionately in a subject like this, you're probably not going to take the time to discuss it. So heat is to be expected.
However, even though the discussion got heated it didn't get disrespectful. That, I think, is the key. I've noticed that when MD discussions get off track it is almost always due to someone not respecting someone else. Here, we disagreed, but rather than name calling and finger pointing, in most cases the disagreements were DISCUSSED. People actually listened to one another, and took a moment to step in each others' shoes, and present a reasoned response. This allows heated debate without degenerating into uncivil behavior.
There are people who enjoy fomenting argument and raising the temperature of a debate past the civil point. But that's not necessary, and indeed it's pretty counterproductive. I think this discussion proves without a doubt that two diametrically opposed opinions can indeed be presented and discussed productively.
I'm pretty impressed by everyone in this discussion. You all get the beverage of choice the next time you're in my part of the solar system world.
Joe
Manish Hatwalne
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Joined: Sep 22, 2001
Posts: 2579

Point noted and respected Joe! Thanks!
- Manish
Sadanand Murthy
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Joined: Nov 26, 2003
Posts: 382
Originally posted by Thomas Paul:

But someone said that there isn't equal protection! If I want seven wives I can only get them if I am a Muslim. How is that fair?

That is why some one mentioned (seems like another life time) that India is more complex to fully understand in a few electronic exhange.
In order to understand why this law is in place you have to understand a lot of dynamics of the times when a unified India was partitioned into present day India & Pakistan. I tried to explain this in one of my earlier posts. Before Indian independence, even through all of British occupation, muslims could have multiple wives (I believe 4 is the limit as per the Quran). So, in independent India the framers of the Indian constitution (FOTC) thought that they needed to assure the muslim population that had chosen to stay in India that their faith & their practise of their faith will not be intruded on by the majority hindu's way of life. That they have full freedom under the Indian constitution to practise their religion without interference from the govt just as hindus do and christians and sikhs ... You must realize that these were wholly unchartered waters for a new independent, united nation (pre colonized India was not a united country).
They (FOTC) did what they thought was the best. The majority of the hindus even in pre-independence days had absolutely no problem with islamic polygamy. Perhaps the FOTC thought this would continue. Whatever may have happened then, whatever the ground realities were then, changed over the period of next 50 years. And now hindus are questioning the same way.
Looking back one can see that there are flaws in parts of the Constitution. Some have been addressed via amendments. Others will too as time goes by.
US has been very fortunate in that when the country was founded the native Americans were not interested in owning land etc. The US Constitution was framed by white men whose intent was to ensure that anything like a British system of Royalty will not be created here. All of them (from what I know) were Christians (various denominations perhaps,nevertheless Christians). They were not put in a situation much like the one the Indians found themselves in in 1947. Even in this the American founding fathers equated a black man to 3/5ths of a person. And not voting rights to women. So, as time went by slavery was abolished; more time went by and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr graced this land and again, the US Constitution was amended to remove this blot; more time went by, women got their voting rights (I may have got the sequences mixed up). Please don't read into this any US-bashing for none is intended. I'm just trying to show that even US had had to amend its constitution over time.
And so will India - over time. She has to go at her pace. Sometimes the pace is agonizingly slow for many of us. Sometimes it is thrillingly fast. And during this journey, their are bound to be missteps; hopefully minor ones; and equally hopefully they will correct them.


Ever Existing, Ever Conscious, Ever-new Bliss
Manish Hatwalne
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Joined: Sep 22, 2001
Posts: 2579

Continuing from my previous post, when such things happen (riots, Gujrat, Graham's issue) many ppl here also feel equally exasperated and shocked as you do. And they are the ones who present it to the world, and take steps to correct it. Believe me it hurts like hell when such things happen.....I wouldn't have posted it otheriwse, but I'll make an exception here, do read this one and also take a look at other articles there about these issues. Might give more insight in these issues...
It is just that for others it is "How could *they* do such a thing....", and for us it is "How could *some part of us* do such a thing....", and sadly we are mistaken as a whole for some small part of us, and that gets us (some of use) defensive...
Last suggestion, for anyone interested in knowing Indian cuture, religion, especially the how hatred gets spread in a perfectly peaceful but hetrogeneous society, I would recommend a translated book "Fuel" by Hamid Dalwai, it is on Rural background and very authentic. There are many others, including some movies, but maybe some other time...
- Manish
Mark Fletcher
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Joined: Dec 08, 2001
Posts: 897
The first four posts of this thread is RKS talking to himself. Is it just me or is RKS trying to be the new Don Liu?


Mark Fletcher - http://www.markfletcher.org/blog
I had some Java certs, but they're too old now...
Manish Hatwalne
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Joined: Sep 22, 2001
Posts: 2579

Read through other posts and I think I should say this.
(1) I am not even hinting that US is evil, and I am no US basher at all.
In fact it is quite the opposite, it is just that I did feel like clearing up few misconceptions/misinterpretations about Iida. The only reason I came up with parallel analogies is just to show common points and was hoping that ppl would be able to extrapolate and understand, as I explained elsewhere.
(2) Yes, I did make few exaggerated, irrational comments; but in those cases the idea was essentially to show mirrror and point out the inherent irratioal nature or "pendulum thinking" about the original comment.
Again, nothing personal, no offense intended!!!
- Manish
Ranga Sreenivasan
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Joined: Apr 01, 2003
Posts: 89
Something to think about...though its an isolated incident, I just hope that it doesn't start a trend...
Read this
Excerpt...
While the ban on religious symbols in front yards applies to every religion equally, the exceptions favour Christians,
Mapraputa Is
Leverager of our synergies
Sheriff

Joined: Aug 26, 2000
Posts: 10065
Joe: Ah, Map, thank you as always for bringing the other side of the coin into view.
I call it "complimentary experience". I first got this idea when reading "Reading Lolita In Tehran" book. The author is talking about her country's movement *into* totalitarianism, while my experience was the opposite: moving from " totalitarianism" to "democracy". I only realized how much I didn't understand after reading her. She is talking about losing something that I never had, and how can you appreciate something you never had? Only by listening to somebody who had. It opened a whole new page for me.
To summarize, our experience (I am speaking about each of us) is so partial, that we need each other to put things in perspective.
[ February 13, 2004: Message edited by: Mapraputa Is ]

Uncontrolled vocabularies
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Thomas Paul
mister krabs
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Originally posted by Ranga Sreenivasan:
Something to think about...though its an isolated incident, I just hope that it doesn't start a trend...
Read this
I hope you noticed that it isn't the government but a commercial association that is making the ruling. Personally, I think it is despicable to tell someone they can't fly a harmless religious flag.


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Pradeep bhatt
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Azim Premji is a Parsi not a moslem.

I dont think it is correct. He is a Muslim.


Groovy
Jim Yingst
Wanderer
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Joined: Jan 30, 2000
Posts: 18671
The original article cited by Ravish certainly seemed to indicate he was Muslim, which is probably why Tom thought he was. If he's not, someone might want to tell IndiaExpress about it.
[ February 14, 2004: Message edited by: Jim Yingst ]

"I'm not back." - Bill Harding, Twister
Thomas Paul
mister krabs
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Originally posted by Jim Yingst:
The original article cited by Ravish certainly seemed to indicate he was Muslim, which is probably why Tom thought he was. If he's not, someone might want to tell IndiaExpress about it.

Thius was the line... "I have been profiled because my name shows I am a Muslim." I thought that meant he was a Muslim.
Sonny Gill
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Joined: Feb 02, 2002
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Originally posted by Paul McKenna:

Sikhs are considered Hindus, Buddhism is considered Hinduism, Jains are considered Hindus

The question is...Do Sikhs consider themselves Hindus? Do Buddhists consider themselves Hindus? Do Jains consider themselves Hindus?


The future is here. It's just not evenly distributed yet. - William Gibson
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Jim Yingst
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[Tom]: Thius was the line... "I have been profiled because my name shows I am a Muslim." I thought that meant he was a Muslim.
Also: "Each visit to the airport entails profiling simply because he is a Muslim." The article doesn't really leave any room for doubt. Unless it's simply wrong.
[ February 14, 2004: Message edited by: Jim Yingst ]
Joe Pluta
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Joined: Jun 23, 2003
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PM: Its time I use the classic Pluta defense
What exactly is a "classic Pluta defense"?
Joe
Joe Pluta
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Posts: 1376
Also: "Each visit to the airport entails profiling simply because he is a Muslim." The article doesn't really leave any room for doubt. Unless it's simply wrong.
The article is right. Mr. Premji is a Muslim. So as it turns out, he was indeed upset because the United States assigns a higher risk factor to members of his religion. But what I find funniest about the whole thing is that while the November 2002 article was posted as an example of American "harrassment", nobody bothered to post the article from a few weeks ago where Mr. Premji said he agreed with the policy and that he was in fact coming to America.
Joe
R K Singh
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Joined: Oct 15, 2001
Posts: 5371
Who the hell is Golwalkar ???


"Thanks to Indian media who has over the period of time swiped out intellectual taste from mass Indian population." - Chetan Parekh
R K Singh
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Joined: Oct 15, 2001
Posts: 5371
Originally posted by Thomas Paul:
It is a secular society that gives no preference to any religion with the exception of one national holiday (Christmas).

Wow !! .. secular country with religious festival as national holiday ??
BTW how many other major festival christians have ??
Now in your words, making religious holiday as National holiday is the single largest step towards discrimination betweeen religions.
Religion cant be bigger than Nation.
R K Singh
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Joined: Oct 15, 2001
Posts: 5371
Originally posted by Axel Janssen:
1.000.000.000 people and not a single bronce medal in the olympics. I could not believe it.

Yes, shame on us.
And I have accepted in the thread of medal count that medal has direct relation with wealth/prosperity.
When 50% public is looking for next day food, it cant think about sport. When you know that you will get food then you can think in other directions also.
I can say that my above statment is an excuse because there are people who did well in games without proper training or funding, but for that you really need great strength which is rare and hence these great heros are rare.
R K Singh
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Joined: Oct 15, 2001
Posts: 5371
Originally posted by Thomas Paul:
But someone said that there isn't equal protection! If I want seven wives I can only get them if I am a Muslim. How is that fair?

Yes, its not fair.
And good for you too as you are getting what RSS (and other Hindu fundamentalist want). [I hate Shiv Sena, that is worst organisation I have seen in my life and its history is more ]
As I said they just want "one law: for all", though some might see advocating that uniform law as being Hindu nationalism.
R K Singh
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Joined: Oct 15, 2001
Posts: 5371
Originally posted by Ranga Sreenivasan:
Something to think about...though its an isolated incident, I just hope that it doesn't start a trend...
Read this
Excerpt...
While the ban on religious symbols in front yards applies to every religion equally, the exceptions favour Christians,

Jason, Can a vegetarian hoist a flag in US ??
R K Singh
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Joined: Oct 15, 2001
Posts: 5371
Originally posted by Sonny Gill:

The question is...Do Sikhs consider themselves Hindus? Do Buddhists consider themselves Hindus? Do Jains consider themselves Hindus?

Gill ji, I can talk about Sikhs and Jains as I have many friends who are eiter Sikh or Jain.
Yes, not only they but their parents and their kids also consider themselves part of Hindu.
And some of my friend are from Punjab (specially Ludhiana)... AW I am going to Ludhiana on 7th of March.. will tell you after coming back
R K Singh
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Joined: Oct 15, 2001
Posts: 5371
I think everyone has said what I could have said.
Its not like you great or I great ... its like vegetarian thinks that non-vegetarian is idiot and non-vegetarian thinks that vege is idiot.
And truth is that whoever thinks that other is idiot, is basically a idiot.
For one registering could be way of discrimination and for some not allowing to fly flag.
Sometime back it was discussed, what do you think about taking finger prints... In India its not considered good but I found people are taking it lightly there.
So by the time you think whether a vege is suppose to register or not, I will do my work. (Keep guessing and once you get the answer, do tell us )
I wish next time Joe will say that India is bashed equal(if not more) to US
Thanks to all for their views and great thoughts.
R K Singh
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Joined: Oct 15, 2001
Posts: 5371
Originally posted by Mapraputa Is:
Actually, it can. Communists did just this, wiped out all old prejudices, by wiping out those who believed in them. That's why I tend to tolerate "imperfectness" of other democracies, give people some time to get over it, ah?

Actually I have seen lot of people in train discussion boards (discussion which happens in train for timepass and "milk belt" is great in that kind of discussions ) who advocate dictatorship in India but only for 5 yrs , after that they want their old system back.



Manish Hatwalne: I can't believe Jason actually is a bartender!!!
What does that mean?


opsss.. why only I and lot other know what he means .. AW now its all over.
Ant Bhala Toh Sab Bhala
All wells that end wells.
Joe Pluta
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Joined: Jun 23, 2003
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Its not like you great or I great ... its like vegetarian thinks that non-vegetarian is idiot and non-vegetarian thinks that vege is idiot.
I wish next time Joe will say that India is bashed equal(if not more) to US
Ravish, there was no India-bashing in this thread. Nobody called anybody an idiot. It was a great discussion, with no name calling.
Joe
Devesh H Rao
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Posts: 687

Was away for 2 days but seems like a lot of water has flown under the bridge in the meantime.
was half expecting the topic to be closed by the time i got back but was plesantly surprised to find it still on
By the way joe if you are really interested get your hands on a e-book or translation of bhagvad gita [b4 anyone gets to blame me for trying to spread hinduism and nails me let me clarify that gita has no mention of hinduism]
Gita lays the groundwork and the duties for a human being who wishes to fulfill his karma.
it is to us what bible is to christians or koran is to muslims. if you find somehing in it which you find discriminatory it could well be a start of a new topic to break our heads with
ya and i agreew ith you for a change the disussion was well worth if it led to even a small iota of better understanding of a often misunderstood entity called "INDIA"
PS: by the way i found this definition about hindus, the word means any person born in a land of indus [indus is a river which originates from himalayas flows from kashmir through the plains in pakistan and joins the arabian sea.] this only reinforces the theory that hindusim is not a religion but more a way of life.
R K Singh
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Originally posted by Joe Pluta:
It was a great discussion, with no name calling.

Are we learning how to have decent debate by helping each other to understand better
Joe Pluta
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Are we learning how to have decent debate by helping each other to understand better
I don't think it's a matter of "learning". It's evident that the folks that participated in this thread for the past few days already know how to have a reasonable discussion. We'll see in future threads if we can all continue the civil behavior.
Joe
Sameer Jamal
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Joined: Feb 16, 2001
Posts: 1870
Originally posted by Joe Pluta:
Are we learning how to have decent debate by helping each other to understand better
I don't think it's a matter of "learning". It's evident that the folks that participated in this thread for the past few days already know how to have a reasonable discussion. We'll see in future threads if we can all continue the civil behavior.
Joe


One thing please chnage the name of the topic from "India and you" to "Muslims and You"
Joe Pluta
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One thing please chnage the name of the topic from "India and you" to "Muslims and You"
Okay, I'll ask: what does this mean? (I was under the impression that many of the Indian posters here were Hindu.)
Joe
Devesh H Rao
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Posts: 687

Originally posted by Joe Pluta:
One thing please chnage the name of the topic from "India and you" to "Muslims and You"
Okay, I'll ask: what does this mean? (I was under the impression that many of the Indian posters here were Hindu.)
Joe

It means sameer wants to have fun
R K Singh
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Posts: 5371
Having said all the praises, let me also say that India still has to improve a lot.
Right now whatever news, like riots, attacks, you might hear, is because of illiteracy. And thats the curse which causes lot of pain to all human beings.
It is being fough but still miles to go before we can say that "we won"
Sonny Gill
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Joined: Feb 02, 2002
Posts: 1211

Originally posted by R K Singh:

Gill ji, I can talk about Sikhs and Jains as I have many friends who are eiter Sikh or Jain.

Well..I am an atheist, but my family is sikh, and the other relatives range from being moderate/casual to devout/strict sikhs, and I can tell you this, more sikhs than you would think do not consider themselves to be hindu, infact they find it very condenscending of hindus to think that sikhs are hindus.
...and may be some buddhists from China, Japan, Korea, Thailand etc. can tell us about what they think of being considered hindu.
Draw your own conclusions...
R K Singh
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Originally posted by Sonny Gill:
Draw your own conclusions...

I think thats bottom line. I will conclude from what I have seen.
AW five fingers are never equal.
Joe King
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Joined: Sep 02, 2003
Posts: 820
Originally posted by Thomas Paul:

So here's a Moslem complaining in the year after 9/11 because American security personnel are nervous about Moslems on airplanes. Get over yourself, pal. 3,000 Americans died because people of your religion decided to hijack planes and crash them into the Twin Towers. Give us a little while to get over that, OK?

I think that if I was a muslim and was treated differently because if it, I would be annoyed. On the other hand, its hardly unexpected, so the guy should not seem quite so shocked about it.
Joe King
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Originally posted by Thomas Paul:
This is incorrect. The US is not a Judeo-Christian country. It is a secular society that gives no preference to any religion with the exception of one national holiday (Christmas).

Is it true that a presedent has to swear on the bible when getting his job? If so, this seems to be preference to christianity. Is there an alternative swearing in ceremony for other religions? (Or is in not likely that a non-christian could get in?)
Devesh H Rao
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Originally posted by Joe King:

Is it true that a presedent has to swear on the bible when getting his job? If so, this seems to be preference to christianity. Is there an alternative swearing in ceremony for other religions? (Or is in not likely that a non-christian could get in?)

Hmm that brings a point to my mind... in india a witness needs to swear on bhagwad gita in the court while giving witness.
does any one know if a non hindu gets to swear on his holy book of choice..
or is it that i watch too much movies.. anyone care to enlighten me
R K Singh
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Originally posted by Devesh H Rao:
does any one know if a non hindu gets to swear on his holy book of choice..

depending on religion, you are given a holy book. At least in movies
 
Don't get me started about those stupid light bulbs.
 
subject: India and you