|Image from Scoopwhoop|
In Dostoevsky’s novel, The Karamazov Brothers, Ivan Karamazov tells the story of Jesus returning to the 16th century Spain where the Catholic Church ruled the roost with the cruel diktats of Inquisitors. Jesus heals the wounds of the people while the Inquisitors seek to eliminate the perceived enemies of their religion. He is arrested soon, however, by the Grand Inquisitor’s guards. The Cardinal who is the Grand Inquisitor tells Jesus to leave the earth since it is the Satan that guides the Church and not the teachings of Jesus. People wouldn’t be able to put Jesus’ teachings into practice. People need their daily bread, occasional miracles and a readymade conscience. These are what Satan had offered to Jesus during his temptations described in the Bible. Satan was right and the Church has been performing the work of Satan ever since it took over the Roman Empire, not because the Church is evil but because it seeks the best and most secure order for mankind.
The best and most secure order for the people is what all religious leaders who seek power profess to provide. The Bharatiya Janata Party, under the leadership of Mr Modi, is offering precisely that: the best and most secure order to the people of India. That is the claim, at least. Quite many people in the country believe that the claim is not only legitimate but also the need of the hour. Mr Modi has been eminently successful in convincing a sizeable population of the nation that he is the nation’s Messiah. People have always loved Messiahs.
Genuine Messiahs have been eliminated by the same people who loved them once. Genuine Messiahs become inconvenient after a while. But Mr Modi is the contemporary counterpart of the Grand Inquisitor. That is why human rights activists get arrested labelled as urban Naxals or whatever, innocent people get lynched by mobs, and absurd claims are accepted as scriptural truths. That is also why Mr Modi will go on becoming more and more powerful as days go by.
This post is triggered by the latest Indispire prompt thrown by Arvind Passey:
So my focus should be on the scriptural truths created by the #IdiotsInParliament. However, the protracted introduction above was unavoidable because I wished to make this post as intelligent as my worthy antagonists are crooked.
The prime antagonist was the one who initiated the creation of the current scriptural truths. He set the game in motion with claims like: “We worship Lord Ganesha. There must have been some plastic surgeon at that time who got an elephant’s head on the body of a human being and began the practice of plastic surgery.” Mr Modi told this to no less distinguished a gathering than the doctors and other professionals at a hospital in Mumbai a few months after he became the Prime Minister of his country which he had promised to take to eminent heights of “development”. He went on to cite other similar examples: “We all read about Karna in the Mahabharata. If we think a little more, we realise that the Mahabharata says Karna was not born from his mother’s womb. This means that genetic science was present at that time. That is why Karna could be born outside his mother’s womb.”
Soon Mr Modi’s party members competed with one another in offering the nation similar scriptural truths. Vijay Rupani, the Chief Minister of Gujarat, acclaimed Lord Rama’s “engineers” who built the Ram Setu [also known as Adam’s bridge, it is a chain of limestone shoals connecting India to Sri Lanka]. Lord Ram’s engineers were able to enlist the help of even squirrels, claimed Rupani.
Shankarbhai Vegad, a BJP MP from Gujarat, taught India that “Cow dung and cow urine can cure cancer.” The excreta of cows, both in solid and liquid versions, became sacrosanct in India soon after Mr Modi ascended the throne in Indraprastha, so much so that quite many Indians lost their lives for the sake of that holy excreta. The education minister of Rajasthan, Vasudev Devnani, discovered that “Cows exhale oxygen”. The cow is the new goddess in India, the holiest of holy, in any-which-way you look at it.
Even Darwin has not been left alone by these new legislators of India. Satyapal Singh, India’s Minister for higher education, declared Darwin wrong. “Nobody, including our ancestors, in written or oral, said they ever saw an ape turning into a human being,” he said. As simple as that!
Another BJP MP, Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishank, made Maharshi Kanad [c600 BCE] the father of the nuclear bomb. The Maharshi “conducted a nuclear test during his time,” said the MP.
Radha Mohan Singh, the Union Minister for Agriculture, taught us that Yogic farming [whatever that is] would “empower the seeds with the help of positive thinking.” He exhorted farmers to “enhance the potency of seeds by rays of Parmatma Shakti.”
Soon pseudo-sciences like astrology will become scientific courses in Indian universities.
Well, one could go on and on with this sort of jokes which are actually gaining currency in the country as science. The question raised by Arvind Passey is: “Why do they make such ridiculous statements?” My answer is: “It’s a power game.”
When Christianity took over the Roman Empire with the blessings of Emperor Constantine, one of the first things it did was to rewrite its hitherto subaltern theology. The First Council of Nicaea recreated Christianity. Mr Modi is recreating Hinduism in India.