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Imbalanced Criticism of India by those who left India , NRI, PIO, OCI ....

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When I was in Chennai, within my work force, I saw several inter marriages, be it caste or religion of Brahmin boys/girls. Some of the most vehement opposition came from the so called lower castes, than even from other religions. It seemed to me at that time that times were changing.
Dear brother, the level of tolerance/acceptance of ICM/IRM is related to several factors I think. Among them are economic status, educational level, social status, etc. The higher up you go in these factors the less caste itself matters, class will matter more, so we see marriages between Hindu family and Maran. The more you go down the ladder of these factors the less tolerant people become of icm/irm.

This surely has a lot to do with social acceptability. Members of the middle-class cannot afford the risk of social ostracization, whereas the rich may even think of icm/irm as a badge that differentiates them from those middle-class vulgarians. The same is probably true of well educated affluent brahmins, for them the risk of ostracization is significantly less and icm/irm may be seen as progressive.

Further, the icms/irms in brahmin families, as for as I have seen, are with boys and girls of somewhat comparable educational and economic status, I am yet to see a middle class brahmin girl going for an icm/irm with a railway porter or construction worker. If there are any such icm/irm, they surely are rare exceptions.

Cheers!
 
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....I was just running away from all the demons chasing me!! Lol.

Oh, sorry! BTW, nobody was chasing me, I was chasing the $$$, didn't get far with my chase though, but enough to be happy, all in ethical manner without anger or frustration getting the better of me LOL.

Cheers!
 
Shri Biswa sir,

Only a few members in this Forum seem to be working to bring in their own version of utopia into this world. I can say definitely, with what little knowledge I have gained (second hand, of course, but very reliable) is that every small group of humans anywhere in this wide world has its own coordinates of reference and ideas such as "perfect egalitarianism, broadmindedness, absence of discrimination, etc., will remain even if a country falls into economic downturn", will rarely turn out to be true; this is because, all the above things are like superficial masks worn when the going is more than good and all these will evaporate in no time, once there is scarcity for essential goods or economic problems, imho.

In M'sia and the Arab countries even now the "locals" (Malays and Arabs resp.) are a previleged class and this is obvious in all walks of life there, except perhaps purchasing in the shopping malls!

You are right. I noticed less defensiveness in the US about 10 years ago when the going was good. More money to go around, less blaming the Mexicans for stealing the gardening jobs and the Indians for stealing IT jobs. But at least the US provides a path to citizenship for legal immigrants. Heard that Arab countries will not offer citizenship to immigrants?
 
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tks

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Dear Dr. tks Avl:Yes, I do. Most of what you wrote.I did the same thing for the Indian flag till I gave up voluntarily my Indian Citizenship in 1989.Are you an Indian or a Naturalized US Citizen here? You need not answer this, if you don't want to.Cheers.:)
Dr Y Avl -

So you used to salute to one kind of cloth and then after 1989 you chose to salute to another piece of cloth with a different markings on the cloth :)In other words you like to salute to piece of cloth with some markings all your life .. LoL

I said the above to make a point. Symbolism of the flag and what it stands for is the one that makes you salute, I assume. Similarly I hope you are showing respect to bald eagle which is the emblem of USA though you may not care about the peacock anymore LoLAll traditions in what is known as Hinduism can be reduced to showing respect to symbols which represent a value important to humanity.

People do not go to temples and worship a piece of stone. Instead they symbolize a stone in a temple to represent hope or other such values. It is just like a flag that symbolizes a value important to that country.

Similarly even when someone leaves India to make a life in another place they do not forget to show their gratitude to India by symbolizing 'her' as Mother. This does not mean they have to go and live in India anymore than you will be required to show your respect to a flag by wearing it everyday.

Most people would show respect to other people's values by showing respect to items that symbolize their values - like their flag, their traditions etc.

One can talk ill of one's own parents or their school or college or their place of birth. That is their choice. However in the world of symbols we live in such action will be interpreted as ingratitude by many.


I hope would think about these points analytically before responding assuming you choose to respond ...
 
One can talk ill of one's own parents or their school or college or their place of birth. That is their choice.
And then there are some of us who would not like to speak ill of any of these as well. Schools and Colleges that many of us continue to respect and which is common (belonging equally) would not be liked to spoken ill of. That leaves one's own parents and other relations.

Nice post.
 

prasad1

Active member
Dr Y Avl -

So you used to salute to one kind of cloth and then after 1989 you chose to salute to another piece of cloth with a different markings on the cloth :)In other words you like to salute to piece of cloth with some markings all your life .. LoL

I said the above to make a point. Symbolism of the flag and what it stands for is the one that makes you salute, I assume. Similarly I hope you are showing respect to bald eagle which is the emblem of USA though you may not care about the peacock anymore LoLAll traditions in what is known as Hinduism can be reduced to showing respect to symbols which represent a value important to humanity.

People do not go to temples and worship a piece of stone. Instead they symbolize a stone in a temple to represent hope or other such values. It is just like a flag that symbolizes a value important to that country.

Similarly even when someone leaves India to make a life in another place they do not forget to show their gratitude to India by symbolizing 'her' as Mother. This does not mean they have to go and live in India anymore than you will be required to show your respect to a flag by wearing it everyday.

Most people would show respect to other people's values by showing respect to items that symbolize their values - like their flag, their traditions etc.

One can talk ill of one's own parents or their school or college or their place of birth. That is their choice. However in the world of symbols we live in such action will be interpreted as ingratitude by many.


I hope would think about these points analytically before responding assuming you choose to respond ...

Beautiful post.

But some people do not respect anything, including themselves. They may pretend to do what is deemed necessary at that time.
<Edtd - KRS>
 
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...People do not go to temples and worship a piece of stone. Instead they symbolize a stone in a temple to represent hope or other such values. It is just like a flag that symbolizes a value important to that country....
I don't want to get in between this discussion between Y and tks, I am somewhat neutral on this topic because I don't think people who criticize India here are motivated by a desire to put India down, on the contrary, IMO, it is a sort of frustration and an yearning to see India do better.

However, I want to make a comment about stone idols in temples and the symbolism of it. I know this is a distraction for which I apologize.

I am sure there are many who look upon the stone (or metallic) idols as a symbol of their religious aspirations, but, is this the way most temple going people view these idols? From what I have observed I think people see there is divine power vested in these idols, power to grant wishes and provide relief for difficulties.

In fact some of these temples are supposed to specialize on some specific needs of the bhaktas. If finding an alliance for a girl is getting delayed the prescription is to perform certain ritual in the Nithya Kalyana Perumal temple on the way to Mahabaipuram. If one is afflicted by some persistent decease pray to Veeraragahvan of Thiruvallur and relief is guaranteed. If the affliction is of the mental kind then Gunaseelam is recommended. I am citing only SV temples because that is what I am familiar with, but I am sure there are equivalent Shivaite temples as well. All this means, to most people, the temple idols are not just symbols, but real entities invested with divine power to answer prayers and provide relief.

Taking this a step further, the SV belief is, these idols are "archa" avatharas of the lord himself, just as real as Rama and Krishna when they roamed the earth, or Mahavishnu in thirupparkadal or Sriman Narayana in Sri Vaikuntam itself. When the idol is properly consecrated according to the agamic rules, the SVs claim, the lord takes a form made of sudda satvam, identical in shape and size of the idol, and pervades the idol. So, to a practicing SV, thinking of the temple idols as symbols is blasphemy, it is not a representation but the lord himself.

Just thought I will record this clarification, please forgive my intrusion....
 
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Dear Dr. tks Avl: I am giving my response below in bold letters.

Dr Y Avl -

So you used to salute to one kind of cloth and then after 1989 you chose to salute to another piece of cloth with a different markings on the cloth :)In other words you like to salute to piece of cloth with some markings all your life .. LoL

Like I consider a Legal Contract written on a piece of paper! You should be knowing more about the importance of a National Flag... it's not a piece of cloth! Lol.

I said the above to make a point. Symbolism of the flag and what it stands for is the one that makes you salute, I assume. Similarly I hope you are showing respect to bald eagle which is the emblem of USA though you may not care about the peacock anymore LoLAll traditions in what is known as Hinduism can be reduced to showing respect to symbols which represent a value important to humanity.

Oh.. you are into Symbolism here! I agree with Mr. Nara on this Symbolism and Idol worship issue. Please read his post on this.

People do not go to temples and worship a piece of stone. Instead they symbolize a stone in a temple to represent hope or other such values. It is just like a flag that symbolizes a value important to that country.

Similarly even when someone leaves India to make a life in another place they do not forget to show their gratitude to India by symbolizing 'her' as Mother. This does not mean they have to go and live in India anymore than you will be required to show your respect to a flag by wearing it everyday.

Please read my post on "Motherland" I wrote to Mr. Ravi. It's the "Smell" of the Land that we are talking about... Your understanding of "Motherland" is quite different here, I am afraid. You are confused with "Mother" here. We are talking about the "Land". Lol. :)

Most people would show respect to other people's values by showing respect to items that symbolize their values - like their flag, their traditions etc.

You are into VALUES now... Most of the times we were debating about Meaning of the IDEA of a human like personal God, the usefulness of prayers, poojas and bhajans and the truthfulness of Poorva Janma Karma, and the consequence of Religious FATALISM on India's economic conditions etc... VALUES are quite subjective matter... you may value something MORE than others! Lol.

You are drifting into chaos here!

One can talk ill of one's own parents or their school or college or their place of birth. That is their choice. However in the world of symbols we live in such action will be interpreted as ingratitude by many.

Gratitude.. and ingratitude are very emotional words! Someone else' interpretation does not bother me much.. If they bother YOU, then you need to worry about it. Not ME! Lol. :)

I have not talked "ill" of my parents. But I will point out the "Vithi" they were talking about all day. And all those Superstitions that they were following all their life time.

Yes, I have commented negatively about the TRADITIONS that they were following. I consider that as Progress... if you stick to your old, untenable, obviously meaningless traditions, how do you move on to "New and More Meaningful Life", anyway? I have said many times, I am not a Traditionalist...:)


I hope would think about these points analytically before responding assuming you choose to respond

I hope you won't mix things up very conveniently... Please call some thing "Superstitious and possibly Stupid" if you think so... :)
...

Peace, Dr. tks.
 
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OP
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tks

tks

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please forgive my intrusion....

No intrusion at all .. I said this a while ago .. If we meet in person or with Dr Y we can have coffee - talk about movies though I do not watch many or talk about the weather at various parts of the globe and just enjoy nature around us :)

Peace to N & Y
 
Dear Dr. tks Avl: I am giving my response below in bold letters.

You are into VALUES now... Most of the times we were debating about Meaning of the IDEA of a human like personal God, the usefulness of prayers, poojas and bhajans and the truthfulness of Poorva Janma Karma, and the consequence of Religious FATALISM on India's economic conditions etc... VALUES are quite subjective matter... you may value something MORE than others! Lol.


Peace, Dr. tks.

Guess who is topping the current special immigration category list of the US?

It is:
clergy and other religious workers for legitimate religious organizations
Immigration

So the religious fatalists are not that "unwanted" after all!!
 
Religious FATALISM in India:

Guess who is topping the current special immigration category list of the US?

It is:
clergy and other religious workers for legitimate religious organizations
Immigration

So the religious fatalists are not that "unwanted" after all!!


How is this "Special immigration category list of the US" legitimizes the Religious FATALISM in India which drags down the country?

As a Secular Constitutional Democracy, US does not discriminate against any person including religious workers. That's what this says.

Nothing else.

India also has a Secular Constitutional Democracy since 1950s, but the entrenched Ancient Culture of Religious FATALISM is keeping her decidedly backward economically with just about $1666 per capita GDP a year!

Please think about it..

Cheers.

:)
 
India also has a Secular Constitutional Democracy since 1950s, but the entrenched Ancient Culture of Religious FATALISM is keeping her decidedly backward economically with just about $1666 per capita GDP a year!

You are missing the bus. Not content with with home grown Religious fatalists, US is importing Religious fatalists from all around the world, that too by placing them in "Special immigration category" .... meaning on urgent or priority basis. So religionists (Indian or others) are not that FATAL after all inspite of all their Religious Fatalism.

Regards
 
... Not content with with home grown Religious fatalists, US is importing Religious fatalists from all around the world, that too by placing them in "Special immigration category" .... meaning on urgent or priority basis. So religionists (Indian or others) are not that FATAL after all inspite of all their Religious Fatalism.
I don't understand, Narayan, you know I disagreee with Y's thesis about fatalism and widespread poverty in India, but I don't understand how US immigration policy and the special consideration given to religious workers has any relevance. Further, I don't think Y ever said those resigned to fatalism are "fatal", even if you are playing with the words for fun, it leaves an impression that Y means that, which he clearly does not, no?

Cheers!
 
I don't understand, Narayan, you know I disagreee with Y's thesis about fatalism and widespread poverty in India, but I don't understand how US immigration policy and the special consideration given to religious workers has any relevance. Further, I don't think Y ever said those resigned to fatalism are "fatal", even if you are playing with the words for fun, it leaves an impression that Y means that, which he clearly does not, no?

Cheers!

Sri Nara Sir,

Sri Y "fully agreed" with the definition that invocation of God's name like "Hai Allah, Hey Bhagwan, Perumale, Murugaa" etc. in common every day circumstances are fatalism here: http://www.tamilbrahmins.com/general-discussions/8285-fatalism-poverty-pakistan-bangladesh.html (msg # 5)

I cannot think of any religious worker not using these words (or their equivalents in another language or religion). Since the immigrant religious worker is a fatalist, both the preacher and the preached would be succumbing to religious fatalism (or RF, as Sri Y generally types).

They would be "fatal" not to themselves or to the public at large, but fatal to the economy of US, as R F is at the root of economic poverty per Sri Y's theory.

If I had typed "not FATAL to the economy" in the original message, instead of leaving the word FATAL hanging, I could have been more clearer.

Regards,
 
Sri Nara Sir,

Sri Y "fully agreed" with the definition that invocation of God's name like "Hai Allah, Hey Bhagwan, Perumale, Murugaa" etc. in common every day circumstances are fatalism here: http://www.tamilbrahmins.com/general-discussions/8285-fatalism-poverty-pakistan-bangladesh.html (msg # 5)

I cannot think of any religious worker not using these words (or their equivalents in another language or religion). Since the immigrant religious worker is a fatalist, both the preacher and the preached would be succumbing to religious fatalism (or RF, as Sri Y generally types).

They would be "fatal" not to themselves or to the public at large, but fatal to the economy of US, as R F is at the root of economic poverty per Sri Y's theory.

If I had typed "not FATAL to the economy" in the original message, instead of leaving the word FATAL hanging, I could have been more clearer.

Regards,

Dear Z and others:

You all know what I mean by Religious or Theological FATALISM:

This means of a religious philosophy which believes that everything is PRE-DETERMINED, and human effort can't change anything.

And, you all know of "Fatal" which means relating to death.

Both are quite different matter, although the "FATAL" may be the word of origin for "FATALISM".

That's for the Linguistic Scholars to bother about... not Yamaka!

Cheers.

:)
 
OP
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tks

tks

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Reset ..

All -

After reading posts #132 and #133 my response was #134 since in my humble opinion, it is not possible to engage in a meaningful discussion if routine & predictable responses are made without displaying understanding of the points raised.

In general, disagreement without displaying an understanding of a point can never lead to productive discussions in my view.

Now one can say the same about what I am saying here and that I am responding without displaying understanding of what was made in posts #132, and #133. However the points made there are hashed several times in the past and I chose not to engage in the "same old same old" comments.

When I first came to USA as a student in mid 70s, we had a welcoming set of events for all foreign students spanning a week. There were outstanding talks by many eminent speakers. Though I do not remember who spoke what , I remember some key points made that I want to share.

1. Whether one likes it or not, each of us were told to assume the role of Ambassadors of our country.

2. We will always be viewed as Indians (or the citizen of the country we came from) even if we become naturalized citizens. In fact most people respect our uniqueness and not care for someone who is trying desperately to be a copy-cat of the majority culture.

My comment now: Though there are many more 'aliens' in USA that have become naturalized citizens ( and contribute to the browning of the white nation at the same time) , we will always be perceived as a person from India or Pakistan! Our children may talk with American accent and if they are not raised as ABCD (American Born Confused Desi) then by celebrating their Indian heritage they are likely to have more happy life in my view. I do not expect agreement to this view by others here.

When someone makes comments disparaging their country of origin in a foreign land such people are rarely accorded respect by the audience in my view.
Doing so can be compared to a candidate going for a job interview and putting down the previous employer!

Without proper understanding of Hindu traditions it is not possible to answer many questions even the second generation is asked when they go to school.
Even if a person claims to be an atheist they should be able to answer questions about traditions in India.

My son when he was in 5th grade was asked a question like - "Hey I heard you guys worship monkeys and elephants .. Can you tell me why". Since the question was not made to mock he tried to answer. The teacher in the class heard that and asked him to explain to the class as a whole next day. If there is interest I can summarize what he said though that may be off topic for this thread....

My point is that though he is an American he answered in a way that made people view positively about India without making things up ...
 

KRS

Active member
Dear Sri TKS Sir,

I came to this country in 1970. I had a host family assigned to me, who are a wonderful large Catholic family, living on a farm outside the city where I was attending the University.

Over the years I have become close to this family and they are invited to all our important functions and they religiously come.

Because of them wanting to know the place where I come from, they have been to India twice, and visited my hometown. While they love the culture, they do not like the crowded conditions in the city. They always tell me they can understand how I am, who I am. They even today do not see me as an American.

Even at work all these years, as an immigrant, my coworkers always understand that I am a product of a mix of American and Indian cultures.

Ethnic diversity with the underlying common fabric provided by this country's culture is the strength of this country. Because America does not tell you not to bring your mother land's culture with you.

Regards,
KRS
 
Mr. Nara,
You said this in your post #132 I have given my views of what you said(not of what you are) in what I have posted below each quote.Nothing personal.:
I am sure there are many who look upon the stone (or metallic) idols as a symbol of their religious aspirations, but, is this the way most temple going people view these idols? From what I have observed I think people see there is divine power vested in these idols, power to grant wishes and provide relief for difficulties.
In fact some of these temples are supposed to specialize on some specific needs of the bhaktas. If finding an alliance for a girl is getting delayed the prescription is to perform certain ritual in the Nithya Kalyana Perumal temple on the way to Mahabaipuram. If one is afflicted by some persistent decease pray to Veeraragahvan of Thiruvallur and relief is guaranteed. If the affliction is of the mental kind then Gunaseelam is recommended. I am citing only SV temples because that is what I am familiar with, but I am sure there are equivalent Shivaite temples as well. All this means, to most people, the temple idols are not just symbols, but real entities invested with divine power to answer prayers and provide relief.

This is like looking at a young child’s attempt to study the quantum theory in a physics text-book holding the book upside down. What would you think of the attempt if it is made by your grandson/grand daughter? Would you enjoy it? Would you make fun of it? Would you try to teach him/her the quantum physics, which you yourself may not know? Would you feel proud of your cursory knowledge of quantum theory and the lack of it on the part of the child? Mr. Nara, you, an atheist who has made up your mind that there is no God, are looking at the actions of a theist and you are forgetting that the theist has faith which you do not have. The theists and atheists operate at two different levels of understanding of the subject. This is the problem with all atheists. They think they are thrice born or blue blooded. They think the practices followed by theists are all buncum and meaningless. The idols in temples are all representation of real Gods for the theists. So they pray to it for mercy and help. As an atheist you can argue with theists about their belief system and its merits. You have no locus standi to discuss the merits of their religious practices. You can say there is no god and challenge the theists to prove that there is a god and in return the theists may reply to you their position on this fundamental issue. Once you have argued out your case there is no scope for you to come and say this or that religious practice followed by the believers is bad or meaningless etc., because it is for them to decide and not for you. Believers believe in a hundred practices like the Nithya Kalyanaperumal worship, veeraraghava worship, Gunaseelam worship, Thirukkarukavur worship etc etc., because they sincerely believe in the effectiveness of this worship. For every atheist who is skeptical about the effectiveness of such worship there are a hundred theists who believe they have benefited from their practice.There ends the matter.

Taking this a step further, the SV belief is, these idols are "archa" avatharas of the lord himself, just as real as Rama and Krishna when they roamed the earth, or Mahavishnu in thirupparkadal or Sriman Narayana in Sri Vaikuntam itself. When the idol is properly consecrated according to the agamic rules, the SVs claim, the lord takes a form made of sudda satvam, identical in shape and size of the idol, and pervades the idol. So, to a practicing SV, thinking of the temple idols as symbols is blasphemy, it is not a representation but the lord himself.

The SV belief is not a pure figment of their fertile imagination. It has a sound logic. In their belief system God resides in Sri Vaikuntam which can not be reached when one is alive on earth. Similarly When he is in Thirupparkadal which is not in this world one can not reach there. In the Vuha avatars in which he is known as Vasudeva, Samkarshana, Pratyumna and anirudhdha he can not be seen except by Yogis. The Vibhava avataras-Rama, Krishna etc- happened in the past and for those living in the present times they cannot have darshan of Rama or Krishna(as the arrow of time is unidirectional). That is why the Archas(idols) in temples are considered the avatars in present times where one can go and have darshan of God. Archas are like the ordinary lakes and tanks nearer home while the others avatars of the past are all like the distant Thirupparkadal. What is wrong in this belief? Why do you heckle at this? Regarding the Sutta Satvam concept it is sutta satvam because God can not be made of any stuff other than that(because ‘He’ is God). If I go into this topic it will become lengthy. I am sure you know what I am saying here. A SV also calls the deity as a bera. But he believes that God resides in that bera when he looks at it as God. It is not as if the SV blindly thinks that the idol is the God. For him idol represents God.

Just thought I will record this clarification, please forgive my intrusion....

My objection is to this repeated misrepresentation of SV belief system by way of ‘clarification’, “interpretation’, ‘comments’ etc. You have your liberty to do all this and I have the liberty to counter every time an attempt of this sort is made. Best wishes. Please keep trying.

Cheers.
 

prasad1

Active member
Mr. Raju,
Brilliant post as usual, I like your comment:
The theists and atheists operate at two different levels of understanding of the subject.
Something troubles me about this statement.

Can the same statement be made when ever there is difference of opinion. For Instance I do not have faith in Astrology, my cousin is firm believer. We have argument about it, but I give in and just give up.
 
Mr. Raju,
Brilliant post as usual, I like your comment:

Something troubles me about this statement.

Can the same statement be made when ever there is difference of opinion. For Instance I do not have faith in Astrology, my cousin is firm believer. We have argument about it, but I give in and just give up.

Dear Mr. Prasad,

Our understanding of subjects depends on our resources. While truth/facts remain what they are we all try to understand them by measuring it up with our inadequate scales. Some people think their scales are adequate. You as well as your cousin may actually be far away from the truth about astrology yet. As long as you have not closed your mind about it, you will one day arrive at the truth about the subject. I do not know how far you have traveled in your quest. So I can say only this much.

In my younger days I was a staunch atheist and was a card holding member of the youth wing of Communist Party(they used to call it the Jananaayaka vaalibar sangham). I have gone through the full drill of learning about the various isms. But I kept my mind open always. I rejected various alternatives after weighing them carefully. But something happened which changed my perception completely and I am a believer today.

I think regular reviewing of our convictions and assessing alternatives is very important until, perhaps, we die.
 
....My objection is to this repeated misrepresentation of SV belief system by way of ‘clarification’, “interpretation’, ‘comments’ etc. You have your liberty to do all this and I have the liberty to counter every time an attempt of this sort is made. Best wishes. Please keep trying.
Dear Raju, in the post you are referring to I did not make a single statement critical of theism. My point was only to correct the misleading impression tks left that for Hinuds the idols are simply symbols, they are not, to a large majority of Hindus. It may serve as a symbol for some, but for most it is what I presented.

Now you say I misrepresented SV belief system in post 132, that is easy to say, but show me, cite one sentence from my post, my words, not your (mis)interpretation of it that is misrepresentation of SV theology. Actually, if you think about it, your post is a reaffirmation of what I was saying, yet at the end you say I am misrepresenting, that is really strange.

If you don't like what I say, that is alright, I can live with that, put if you want to say I am misrepresenting, then you have to do more than just assert it.

best wishes ...
 
Dear Sri suraju06,
Your post #147. A harmless question if you will. I apologise if this hurts you.
You say you were a staunch atheist, but kept your mind open always. By Staunch and Open, you mean it was a
flip, and not gradual change to a believer?
 
I think people praise/blame a country according to their own experience. Like the saying goes, “our country is where we are well off”.

Indians want to pursue greener pastures – green pack and green card
J but their heart still beats for India. For them, there is a like/hate relationship with India depending upon the circumstances.

The situation is quite different for the (Indian) generation which is born outside India and lives outside India. For them, India is just another country. No sentiments, no commitments.
 
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