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Feel more for fellow-religionists, oh Hindus

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Feel more for fellow-religionists, oh Hindus

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Okay, my resistance has broken down and here I post. I thank commenter kaffir for various kind words he has made on various occasions.

While Jaiarjun's blog is of the kind I avoid like plague, a post at Acorn led me to a "Q&A with Alice Albinia" that was featured there, and the following passage shook me up :
Question : What were your initial impressions of Pakistan?

The thing that took me a long time to come to terms with was the great religiosity of Pakistan – I had never really encountered anything like that, even though I grew up in a religious Christian family. As I mention in the book, in Pakistan almost every utterance seems to be punctuated by a holy expression – even when people are simply going about their mundane, worldly tasks.

I think this showy religiousness probably came in at the time of Zia. At any rate, it was a great contrast to my experience of India, where I hardly knew anyone who was so religious. [link]

Showy or not, religion gives you strength. It leads you beyond showiness, and helps foster a culture of genuine religiosity. Even most irreligious people tend to respect the deeply religious. The present strength of Islam certainly has a lot to do with the deep faith Muslims have.

Deep faith naturally results in solidarity with fellow-religionists. Don't you see how Palestine pains Muslims so much but not Darfur? This is not a bad trait by any means. Having that extra love for fellow-religionists is only like having that extra love for one's own father or mother or beloved. If you close your gate to that love in the name of "equal vision", without actually developing any kind of universal love, you are only constricting your path towards genuine equal vision. It is analogous to treating father or mother as an outsider. Maya binds us, but also provides the means out of it.

Here is a quote from Swami Vivekananda that a friend recently sent me :
"Then and then alone you are a Hindu when the very name sends through you
a galvanic shock of strength. Then and then alone you are a Hindu when
every man who bears the name, from any country, speaking our language or
any other language, becomes at once the nearest and dearest to you. Then
and then alone you are a Hindu when the distress of anyone bearing that
name comes to your heart and makes you feel as if your own son were in
distress. Then and then alone you are a Hindu when you will be ready to
bear everything for them."[link]
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