Monday, August 4, 2014

Differences Between Buddhism and Hinduism

Buddhism and Hinduism have a common past, and while there are many similar beliefs between the two religions, there are just as many differences between the Buddhist and Hindu religions.


Both Buddhism and Hinduism believe in an (almost) endless cycle of births, known as samsara. They also both seek release from this cycle of rebirths.
Hindus believe in an everlasting soul (atman) that is reincarnated more-or-less intact from birth to birth. Through spiritual practice, Hindus seek release (moksha, also known as liberation) so that the soul can join with the Universal Divine Force (Brahman, often simply translated as God).
The Buddha, however, taught that there wasn’t a constant soul, but a collection of feelings, perceptions, senses, and other intangibles that made up all living beings. The concept of the lack of a constant sould is known as anatta.
Hence, for Buddhists, the ultimate goal is something more abstract: ending suffering by escaping the cycle of rebirths, and entering into a state of Nirvana. It is a common misconception to translate Nirvana as meaning “Paradise,” or as “Heaven.” Nirvana itself is something of an abstract concept. One meaning is “cool,” which implies that one is far away from the fires of desire and Kilesa (defilement).


Both Buddhism and Hinduism believe in the concept of Karma, which states that our past actions affect our present and future life states. One could do evil in this life and be reborn a worm in the next life. Similarly, afflictions in this life are often explained away as the effects of Karma from a previous life (or from misdeeds earlier in this life).


The word Dharma is common to both Buddhist and Hindu religions. Buddhists generally use the word Dharma to refer to the collective teachings of the Buddha, and the Buddha used the word Dharma to roughly mean “how the universe works.”
The Hindu concept of Dharma might be thought of as being “one’s role in the universe.” The concept includes not only one’s performance of religious acts, but how they act in society and how they act toward their family responsibilities.
In Hindu society, one’s dharma may vary depending upon their caste, and in what stage of life they are in. An older man from a higher caste might have a different dharma than a young man from a lower caste.


Hinduism, which has thousands of gods and goddesses, is for the most part actually a monotheistic religion. Each god is seen as one manifestation of the one Supreme God.
In Hinduism, each family will be devoted to a particular deity. Most Hindus practice devotion (bhakti) to either a form of Lord Vishnu or Lord Shiva. They see this as one essential part of religious practice.
The Buddha, on the other hand, taught that we should not concern ourselves with worship or devotion to a particular God. The Buddha did not deny the existence of a Supreme God: he just said that we are responsible for our on enlightenment, and not to believe that a supreme being could help us.
The Buddha did decry the practice of animal sacrifices in devotional acts to the gods and goddesses that were commonplace. Eventually, this belief in the sacredness of all life spread to Hinduism, and animal sacrifice became the exception instead of the norm. In fact, the Buddha’s impact on Hinduism was so strong that followers of Vishnu believe that the Buddha was one of Vishnu’s avatars (a being that helps humanity in times of distress). Buddhists do not share this belief.


Both Buddhism and Hinduism believe strongly in developing awareness and mental concentration in the spiritual quest. In Buddhism, meditation is near ubiquitous, with insight meditation (Vipassana) being the most emphasized form of meditation. Buddhist monks are expected to spend hours each day in meditation, while the lay people are expected to practice regularly, and are free to attend meditation sessions at local temples. The Mahayana Schools of Buddhism also emphasize Metta (compassion) meditation.

In Hinduism, Yoga is more than a series of postures to be held as a form of exercise. Instead, Yoga (which literally means Yoke, as in to be yoked to God), consists of 8 different practices as follow:
Abstention from sins such as theft, violence, sex, greed, dishonesty
Observance of self and tolerance
Postures (known as Asana), which are familiar to most Westerners
Breath Control
Withdrawal of senses
Mental concentration and stilling the mind

7 Life Hacks You Can Learn From Mahabharat

Indian mythology is known for its grandeur and its emphasis on the goodness quotient. However, seldom we look at mythology as something that has practical lessons to make our life easier. Yes, you heard it right, we are talking about practical lessons from mythology. And what better way to look at one of the biggest epic available in Indian mythology: Mahabharat.

Mahabharat is known to be a tale of the victory of good over evil.

When you are activated emotionally, don't trust yourself

There are times when we are very submerged in emotions (mostly negative) and we take big decisions in that state of mind. Mahabharat teaches us how disastrous that can be. For example, when Pandu (the father of Pandavas) accidently killed a sage disguised as deer, he is filled with guilt and remorse. In that breath of guilt and remorse, he decides to quit his throne, kingdom & palace and live in forest. Its this decision which starts the main problem in the kingdom of Hastinapur and his brother Dhritrashtra (who is considered inefficient and insecure) who was earlier deemed misfit to be a king is given the throne, with no other option left.

Had Pandu not decided in his spell of guilt and remorse and let the emotional upheaval pass, things could have been different. If he would have taken considered the situation in a more stable emotional state, he would have been able to look at the situation objectively and realized that his elder brother may not be effective as a king. For the good of the people and his kingdom, he would have chosen to stay as king and opted for some other way as a punishment for himself (if he wanted to). If that would have happened, the story of Mahabharat could have been different.

So, the life hack we learn here is that when we are emotionally activated, we can't see clearly. Mahabharat teaches us not to trust ourselves in those moments and avoid taking any decisions in that state. Rather, just let it pass and when you are back to normal then look and contemplate the situation objectively and take whatever action and decision is required.

Express yourself and do it lovingly

One of the most important lesson that one can learn from this great epic is to express yourself, express what you feel and do it gently with loving gloves. At her 'Swayamvar', Draupadi (the wife of Pandavas) rejects Karn sighting his low caste. She chooses very harsh words and humiliates him so he is discouraged and does not participate in the process. She succeeds in her attempt but in the process creates such a hatred in Karn's heart that he is always burning in that fire to take revenge against her and humiliate her publicly in a similar fashion. Driven by that hatred and revenge, when he gets his chance in Duryodhan's court, he instigates the Kauravas in their act of humiliating Droupadi by disrobing her.

The life hack here is to express yourself lovingly. For whatever reason if Droupadi didn't want Karn to participate in her Swayamvar, she could have done the same in gentle words without humiliating him. If she would have spared him of the humiliation, he would not have been so driven by revenge to humiliate her in Duryodhan's court. So, remember express yourself but with love and gentle care.

Use challenging times as preparation for a big victory

Before the great war begins, the Pandavas had to spend challenging 13 years in exile in a forest. If one looks at those thirteen years, one realizes that the Pandavas' victory would not have been possible without those years in exile. It was in the exile that they met many learned saints who shared their wisdom that came handy for the Pandavas during the Kurukshetra war. It was during this period when Arjuna acquires the best of his weapons that play a deciding role in them winning the war. It is in this exile Bhima learns the lesson of humility which keeps his head leveled during the war. There are many such things that Pandavas learned during their exile that brought them victory.

We can apply the same approach to challenging times in our life and look at what can we learn from that situation. If we can do that, we will come out victorious.

Passion is the best teacher

One cannot miss the story of 'Eklavya' who was so passionate about learning the art of archery, that when the royal guru 'Dronacharya' refuses to teach him, he hides behind trees and watch him teach the Pandavas and Kauravas. It is his passion that he learns all the techniques of archery just by watching from far away without a teacher actually teaching him. Not just that, he becomes so good at it that Drona feels, he is actually better than (or at par with) Arjuna.

The life hack for us is to live with passion and put our heart and soul in to what we really want. If we do that, whatever we want will come to us.

Be solution oriented

This is a very big lesson that Mahabharat teaches us. Krishna goes to the Kauravas as Pandavas messenger and asks them to give only five villages to the Pandavas and solve the dispute. But the Kauravas refuse even that as their focus is not on finding a solution to their dispute with Pandavas. Rather, they are driven by ego and power. Eventually, they lose their kingdom and their lives in the epic war. Had they been solution oriented and given the 5 villages to the Pandavas, they would have ruled their kingdom and lived longer. So remember to be solution oriented for a long and happy life!


One of the biggest lessons to be learned from Mahabharat is of forgiveness: To forgive others and to forgive ourselves! If Pandu would have forgiven himself for killing a saint, if Karn would have forgiven Droupadi and Kunti (his mother for abandoning him), if Duryodhan would have forgiven Droupadi for laughing at him, if Droupadi would have forgiven the Kauravas... the list is endless. If forgiveness was given in these and many other cases, the story of Mahabharat would not have revolved so much around pain and suffering.

The life hack for us: Forgiveness always helps us.

Gambling is no good!

Well, this one is a no brainer and almost self explanatory! Gambling can take away the wisdom from someone as learned as Yudhisthir so much so that he gambles his own brothers and his wife over a game. Well, it reiterates the message to stay away from this dangerous addiction.

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Lord Shiva in Hinduism

In the Hindu trinity of Gods, Shiva is the destroyer and renewer. Known as the Finger of God, this powerful being represents the Will which determines the rhythm of the worlds.
Thousands of years before scientists discovered the similarity in structure of the atomic nucleus of solar systems, the Hindus asserted that the same rhythm must be found at all stages of creation and in all domains. For a moment consider rhythm and density, as rhythm acts first and foremost on density (matter), and plays a role in Hindu thought comparable to that which we associate with weight and shape.
One of the forms of Shiva is Nataraja, the Lord of the Cosmic Dance. He stands in his flaming circle of fire with the upper right hand holding a little drum-shaped hourglass, the rhythm of which is the world ~ creating the beat of time, which draws a veil across the face of eternity. His extended left hand holds the flame of spiritual light that burns this veil, revealing the void of eternity.
Nataraja's second right hand is in fear-dispelling posture, and the second left hand is pointing to the raised left foot. That hand is called the Elephant Hand and signifies teaching, for where the elephant has gone through the jungle, all animals can follow. Likewise wherever a teacher leads the way, disciples may follow.
The raised left foot signifies release, while the right foot stomps on the back of Tripurasura, demon of the three lower worlds ~ the mental, astral and physical planes. Tripurasura is the dwarf of ignorance, who drives souls into the vortex of rebirth. Shiva gazes in fascination at the poisonous world serpent, representing humanity’s psychological attraction into the realm of bondage into unending birth, suffering and death.
The god’s head is poised, serene and still in the midst of all creation and destruction. His right earring is said to be a man’s and his left is a woman’s, for he includes and transcends opposites. In his streaming hair is found a skull, the crescent moon, the datura flower, and a tiny image of the goddess Ganges.
In former times the Ganges, which now waters the three worlds, washed only the sky. One day the earth had become so cluttered with the ashes of the dead that there seemed no possible way to cleanse it. The sage Bhagiratha thought of bringing the purifying Ganges down to earth, for its mere proximity was enough to wash away all uncleanness.
But the sacred river was so large that its descent entailed the risk of shaking and destroying the earth, just as the sudden descent of willful divine light on a person insufficiently prepared can destroy their physical body. Shiva invited the Ganges to fall upon his head, and from there the river, meandering through the god’s hair, divided into seven torrents (the seven rays), then flowed on slowly and smoothly over the surface of the terrestrial world.
There is an esoteric and close analogy between the purifying Ganges, which circulates in the universe like the blood in our bodies, and Shiva, who like the heart, is motionless in rhythm, invoking and directing life-giving and purifying energy in the universe and in humanity. The real place of purification for the disciple is the heart; it is in the heart that the personality and the fruits of action are consumed, and all that is left is the Divine Spark, the Will of God: ATMA.
The posture of the dancing Shiva, Nataraja, suggests the shape of the sign OM, in the head, hands and raised foot. The appearance of this god resounds the wonder of existence ~ the seed sound, the energy sound, and the essence of all being.

Symbology of Shiva
Here is a key explaining what the different symbols in Lord Shiva's portrayals depict.
Cremation ground Shiva sitting in the cremation ground signifies that he is the controller of death in the physical world.
Matted locks The three matted locks on Lord Shiva's head convey the idea that integration of the physical, mental and spiritual aspects is the ideal of yoga.
Tiger skin The tiger skin symbolizes potential energy.
Crescent moon The crescent moon is only one of Shiva's ornaments. In Vedic astrology, the moon is the mother of planets. Shiva, for creation of the universe, lends importance to the mother aspect, this is shown by the moon.
The moon also is a measure of time, and thus the crescent on Lord Shiva's head signifies his control over time. Lord Shiva is the Eternal Reality and he is beyond time. Thus, the crescent moon is only one of His ornaments, and not an integral part of him.
Three eyes Lord Shiva, also called Tryambaka Deva, is depicted as having three eyes: the sun is his right eye, the moon the left eye and fire, the third eye.
Nandi The bull is associated with Shiva and said to be his vehicle.
Kundalas Two Kundalas ~ Alakshya and Niranjan ~ in the ears of the Lord symbolize the Shiva and Shakti (male and female) or Ardha-Nariswara principle of creation.
Kamandalu A water pot ~ Kamandalu ~ made from a dry pumpkin contains nectar and is shown on the ground next to Shiva signifies that an individual must break away from attachment to the physical world and clean his inner self of egoistic desires in order to experience the bliss of the Self.
Snake ~ Vasuki Naga The snake is shown curled three times around the neck of the Lord and is looking towards his right side. The three coils of the snake symbolize the past, present and future ~ time in cycles.
Rudraksha necklace Rudra is another name of Shiva. The Rudraksha necklace worn by the Lord illustrates that he uses the cosmic laws firmly, without compromise, to maintain law and order in the universe.
Ganga Ganga, symbolically represented on the head of the Lord by a female (Mother Ganga), with a jet of water emanating from her mouth and falling on the ground, signifies that the Lord destroys sin, removes ignorance, and bestows knowledge, purity and peace on the devotees.
Snake around the neck The snakes symbolize the yogic power of Lord Shiva with which he dissolves and recreates the universe.
Varda Mudra Lord Shiva's right hand is shown in a boon-bestowing and blessing pose, which annihilates evil, bestows grace, destroys ignorance, and awakens wisdom in his devotees.
Trident (Trisula) The three-pronged trident shown adjacent to the Lord symbolizes his three fundamental powers (shakti) ~ of will (iccha), action (kriya) and knowledge (jnana).
Damaru (drum) Damaru symbolizes the two utterly dissimilar states of existence ~ unmanifest and manifest.
Half-open eyes When Lord Shiva opens his eyes a new cycle of creation emerges, and when he closes them the universe dissolves for creation of the next cycle. The half-open eyes convey the idea that creation is going through this cyclic process, with no beginning no end.

Thursday, July 31, 2014

"Why do #Jews and #Arabs / #Muslims hate each other?"

Question: "Why do Jews and Arabs / Muslims hate each other?"

First, it is important to understand that not all Arabs are Muslims, and not all Muslims are Arabs. While a majority of Arabs are Muslims, there are many non-Muslim Arabs. Further, there are significantly more non-Arab Muslims in areas such as Indonesia and Malaysia than there are Arab Muslims. Second, it is important to remember that not all Arabs hate Jews, not all Muslims hate Jews, and not all Jews hate Arabs and Muslims. We must be careful to avoid stereotyping people. However, generally speaking, Arabs and Muslims have a dislike of and distrust for Jews, and vice-versa.

If there is an explicit biblical explanation for this animosity, it goes all the way back to Abraham. The Jews are descendants of Abraham’s son Isaac. The Arabs are descendants of Abraham’s son Ishmael. With Ishmael being the son of a slave woman (Genesis 16:1-16) and Isaac being the promised son who would inherit the blessings of Abraham (Genesis 21:1-3), obviously there would be some animosity between the two sons. As a result of Ishmael’s mocking Isaac (Genesis 21:9), Sarah talked Abraham into sending Hagar and Ishmael away (Genesis 21:11-21). Likely, this caused even more contempt in Ishmael’s heart towards Isaac. An angel prophesied to Hagar that Ishmael would “live in hostility toward all his brothers” (Genesis 16:11-12).

The religion of Islam, to which a majority of Arabs are adherents, has made this hostility more profound. The Qur'an contains somewhat contradictory instructions for Muslims regarding Jews. At one point it instructs Muslims to treat Jews as brothers and at another point commands Muslims to attack Jews who refuse to convert to Islam. The Qur’an also introduces a conflict as to which son of Abraham was truly the son of promise. The Hebrew Scriptures say it was Isaac. The Qur’an says it was Ishmael. The Qur’an teaches that it was Ishmael whom Abraham almost sacrificed to the Lord, not Isaac (in contradiction to Genesis chapter 22). This debate over who was the son of promise contributes to the hostility today.

However, the ancient root of bitterness between Isaac and Ishmael does not explain all of the hostility between Jews and Arabs today. In fact, for thousands of years of Middle Eastern history, Jews and Arabs lived in relative peace and indifference towards each other. The primary cause of the hostility has a modern origin. After World War II, when the United Nations gave a portion of the land of Israel to the Jewish people, the land was at that time primarily inhabited by Arabs (the Palestinians). Most Arabs protested vehemently against the nation of Israel occupying that land. Arab nations united and attacked Israel in an attempt to drive them out of the land, but they were defeated. Ever since, there has been great hostility between Israel and its Arab neighbors. Israel exists on one tiny piece of land surrounded by much larger Arab nations such as Jordan, Syria, Saudi Arabia, Iraq, and Egypt. It is our viewpoint that, biblically speaking, Israel has a right to exist as a nation in its own land that God gave to the descendants of Jacob, grandson of Abraham. At the same time, we strongly believe that Israel should seek peace and display respect for its Arab neighbors. Psalm 122:6 declares, “Pray for the peace of Jerusalem: May those who love you be secure.”

Friday, July 18, 2014

India, the Most Pro-Israel Country

A study undertaken on behalf of Israel's foreign ministry by an international market research company found that India is the most pro-Israel country in the world, beating out the United States by two percentage points.
The study, undertaken as part of the "Branding Israel" project, looked at what it calls the world's 13 most important countries and included 5,215 interviewees. Asked a series of questions, participants graded their sympathy for Israel on a 1-to-10 scale. Some results, given in terms of percentage expressing sympathy to the Jewish State:
58% India
56% United States
52% Russia
52% Mexico
50% China
34% Great Britain
27% France
23% Spain
Indians and Israelis have many common platforms:

1) Indians are pro development, peace loving, pro democracy and intellectual people just like israelis and indians have high praise for Israel for defending itself from the clutches of surrounding muslim nations in a brave and aggressive manner. India is not able to do that with pakistan , bangladesh, afghanistan, china. Indians crave for that aggression and bravery so they love and highly appreciate Israel.
2) In any international dispute the indians have a 100 percent inclination in favour of israel because indians better understand the mentality of muslim nations. although indian government do not openly favour israel due to some international equations and due to large population of muslims here in india.
3) It is for sure that india and muslim nations are not natural allies due to vast differences in culture, society, government,way of thinking etc. Indians find Israel close to their heart because everything including religion has very high degree of similarities.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

How Muslims of India, Afghanistan, Pakistan and Bangladesh were once Hindus - History of Islamic Conversion

Today we do not have an idea of how a merciless Islamic Jihad forcibly transformed the Hindu and Buddhist society of Afghanistan, Pakistan and Bangladesh into a Muslim one with a merciless tyranny of over one thousand years. While in the erstwhile Indian territories of what is today Afghanistan, Pakistan and Bangladesh; Hinduism was supplanted entirely by Islam, but in what today is called India; the Muslim tyranny succeeded only partially in converting a part of the population to Islam.

In fact those parts of erstwhile Hindu and Buddhist India, where a majority of the Hindus and Buddhists were converted to Islam have become distinct Muslim nations of Afghanistan, Pakistan and Bangladesh today. These countries were parts of India, before the Muslims invaded that part of the world.

We shall see at the end of this article the methods used by the Muslim tormentors to convert a large part of the Hindus and Buddhists to Islam. Many Muslims today raise a canard about an alleged tolerant nature of Muslim rule in India because of which a majority of Indians today have remained Hindus. They try to pull wool over your eyes, and are supported by the unabashedly pro-Jihadi, pro-terrorist communist anchors in Indian electronic media like NDTV, CNN-IBN and in the English print media in India like the Muslim managed “Asian Age”, and the pro-terrorist commie controlled “Hindu” and Hindustan Times, along with the pink-tinted Times of India, Indian Express, and many other leading (rather misleading) national dailies in India.

These pro-terrorist scoundrels from the NDTV and IBN often pose (rather impose) a question as to how only eleven percent of the population of India is Muslim if the Muslim rulers were tormentors who made Hindus accept Islam at the point of the sword?

The issue here is that in historic times when we refer to India we include all those parts that were inhabited by Hindus and Buddhists before the Muslim aggression. So what is today Bangladesh, Pakistan and Afghanistan as well as India, are parts of historic India. And so when we consider this geographic entity as one whole, the population of Muslims (in India, Pakistan, Afghanistan and Bangladesh together accounts for fifty five percent).

The fact that Hindus still account for forty five percent of the population is due to the fact that in Punjab, Rajputana, Maharashtra, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Orissa, Nepal, Assam and South India, the Hindus defeated and rolled back the Muslim aggressors, so its was these parts that remained predominantly Hindu. In other erstwhile provinces of India, like Herat, Bamiyan, Zabul, Kabul, in Afghanistan, and Baluchistan, Paktoonistan, Sindh, Western Punjab in Pakistan and in Eastern Bengal (i.e. today Bangladesh) which were under Muslim rule for an unbroken period of one thousand years, the Hindu population was decimated to almost zero. Today we do not realize that while talking about areas such as Gandhara (Kandahar), Kubha (Kabul), Makara (Makran), Sakastana (Siestan/Balouchistan), Sindh, West Punjab, Paktoonistan, East Bengal (Bangladesh) we are in fact talking of India and Indian provinces which were formerly wholly Hindu and Buddhist majority parts of India up to the 7th century and between the 7th and 16th centuries their Hindu and Buddhist population was decimated through slaughter and force conversion. And even today in the surviving Indian provinces like Uttar Pradesh (formerly United Provinces), Bihar, Kerala and West Bengal, the population of Muslims is around thirty percent and is growing fast due to Islamic polygamy and accelerated breeding rates and exfiltration from Bangladesh.

Today this process of Islamization is still on in Kashmir through the use of terror for the forced migration of the population of Hindu pandits from the Kashmir Valley. In other parts of India where these tactics would be fiercely resisted by the Hindus, the process of using the womb bomb to increase the Muslim population is being used to the hilt by the mushrooming of high fertility rates among Muslim who can have four wives at one time, with women being treated like baby producing factories. The Muslims inhabit the mushrooming slum areas in and around all major Indian metros such as Delhi, Kolkata, Mumbai, Chennai, Hyderabad, Patna, Lucknow, Ahmedbad and many other semi metropolitan towns.

This Muslim baby boom is significantly happening in the Terai region of Uttaranchal, northern Uttar Pradesh and Bihar, Assam, parts of Andhra Pradesh (Hyderabad) and Kerala. There are many districts in India which today are Muslim majority areas. According to unofficial estimates the Muslim population in India is today at 25 percent. Thus if we look at historic India those parts which were under Muslim tyranny the Hindu population was decimated to nil. And in the rest of the country, it was the fierce Hindu resistance and counter attack that led to the Hindu character of some Indian provinces to be salvaged in spite of the merciless Muslim tyranny.

In the following paragraphs we shall see the fierce resistance put up to Muslim tyranny by Hindu rulers like Man Singh Tomar, Maharana Sangram Singh (Rana Sanga), Maharana Pratap, Harihara Raya, Krishna Deva Raya, Narsimhadeva, Lachit Barphukan, Guru Govind Singh Chattrapati Shivaji Maharaj and other Hindu bravehearts.

It was after repeated unnerving experiences of Muslim treachery, subterfuge, deceit; that wisdom finally dawned on some of the Hindus that enabled some of them to launch a successful counter attack on their Muslim tormentors.

The Maratha Hindu warrior King Chattrapati Shivaji Maharaj was the epitome of this successful Hindu counter-attack on Islam which turned the patented Muslim techniques of deceit and subterfuge on the Muslims themselves.

The Hindu Counterattack on Muslims

The Hindu counterattack against Islam does not have any fixed date. From the very first battles of the Rajas of Makara (Makran) and Sindh in 638, till the final elimination of Muslim rule by the Marathas, Jats, Rajputs, Gurkhas and Sikhs in the 18th and early 19th centuries, this constant Hindu-Muslim war did not stop. So we can only define the counterattack as that period when the Hindus started turning the tactics of their Muslim tormentors on the tormentors themselves. The first Hindu king to do that was the King of Orissa - Narasimhadeva.

How Narasimhadeva defeated Tugan Khan in 1248 C.E.

After the easy victories over North India from Punjab, through Bengal, the Muslims turned to attack Orissa. Here the Muslims met their match. The people of Orissa were hardy fighters. (In ancient and medieval times, Orissa was also called Kalinga or Utkal – from Uttam Kala which means ‘Excellent Art’ that reflects the artistic tradition of sculpture of that region) The bravehearts of Orissa had given a hard time to Samrat Ashoka Mauya, when in the 3rd century B.C.E. Kumara, the king of Kalinga, gave a tough battle to the Mauryan invader, before Orissa could be annexed to the Maurya Empire.

Now in the 13th century, when Tugan Khan attacked Orissa, the then ruling king of Orissa, Narsimhadeva, decided to use subterfuge against the Muslims. He sent word to the invaders that he wanted to surrender without a fight, as had Lakshmansena, the ruler of neighboring Bengal.

Tugan had easily conquered Bengal a few years before attacking Orissa. He found Bengal to be easy meat as the king of Bengal instead of fighting, fled from the advancing Muslim armies and Begal fell without a fight. Having tasted blood in Bengal, Tugan thought that the conquest of Orissa would also be a cakewalk.


The victorious King of Orissa, Narasimhadeva erected a victory pillar designed as a war chariot. This temple was dedicated to Surya the Sun god, at a location near the temple town of Puri. He named this place Konark which means “Essence of the Corners” While the structure commemorates the victory in the battle against the Muslims, the name Konark commemorates the science of astronomy of which the King was an avid student.

Tugan boasted that he had put the fear of death in the heart of the Hindus and could overrun the entire country in a single campaign. But Narasimhadeva had other ideas. He decided to use the Muslims’ patent tool subterfuge against the enemy. He sent word to Tugan that Orissa was ready to surrender to the Muslims without a fight, as had its neighbor Bengal. Tugan accepted Narasimhadeva’s surrender proposal and asked for the surrender of the major city of Puri that was an important Hindu Pilgrim center (Narasimhadeva had his capital elsewhere at Jajanagara). Tugan’s other conditions included handing over all weapons to the Muslim army, the embracing of Islam by the entire population in the central square in front of the Jagannath Temple or agreeing to pay Jazia and to convert the Jagnnath temple at Puri into a Mosque as an acknowledgement of submission.

To the delight of the Muslims, all these terms were accepted and the Muslims advanced into the city, blissfully unaware that the shrewd Hindu king had laid a trap for them. On the orders of Narasimhadeva, the bustling city had been completely evacuated of its pilgrims, the aged and children; and professional soldiers from all over the kingdom had occupied every nook and cranny of the city, hidden away inside the closely built houses across the narrow winding lanes.

Once the Muslim army was inside the city, it had to disperse itself into the maze of narrow lanes and bylanes with which they were not familiar and where they had to dismount from their horses and advance single file.

Unaware of the danger lurking they advanced cautiously and slowly towards the central square where the surrender ceremony was to take place.

When the Muslim army was so dispersed, at a prearranged signal from one of lookouts from the temple spires, the temple bells started ringing, and this was the signal for the Hindus to pounce on the Muslims. The pitched battle lasted one whole day and went into the night pierced by the cries of wounded and dying Muslim and Hindu soldiers. While the Hindus took many losses, the entire Muslim army was caught like as in a mousetrap, and annihilated. Very few Muslims could escape this trap.

This bold and unorthodox idea succeeded, and it caught the Muslims totally off-guard as it had never been used till then, by any Hindu king, as it went against the Hindu rules of warfare based on fair-play and fighting a noble war.

But precisely because of it being totally unexpected, the Muslims had to suffer a bloody nose and the Hindus emerged victorious. Consequently Orissa was to remain a Hindu bastion for many centuries and this accounts for the very low percentage of Muslims in Orrisa even today, unlike Bengal, where the eastern part (known today as Bangladesh) has been totally Islamized, and the Western half of Bengal is undergoing the process of Islamization especially in the district of Murshidabad and the metropolis of Kolkata which abound in slums infested by local Muslims and those infiltrating from Eastern Bengal (Bangladesh).

The victorious King of Orissa, Narasimhadeva erected a victory pillar designed as a war chariot. This temple was dedicated to Surya the Sun god, at a location near the temple town of Puri. He named this place Konark which means “Essence of the Corners” While the structure commemorates the victory in the battle against the Muslims, the name Konark commemorates the science of astronomy of which the King was an avid student.

Although some Hindus, such as the Marathas of Pune, displayed this shrewdness against the Muslims; in most others such as the kings of Vijaynagar and the Rajputs continued to wage a noble war with the ignoble Muslims and lost out. It was for the shrewdness of the Marathas led by their astute king Shivaji, that the Muslims could never entirely subjugate the Southern half of India (Dakkan or Deccan from Dakshin which means south in Sanskrit) as they did with North India.

But relatively speaking, it was also the Hindus of Vijayanagar in Karnataka who gave a tougher time to the Muslims as compared to the Rajput Hindus, and held back the tide of Muslim aggression at the Krishna river. And it was the Maratha Hindus who finally threw off the Muslim yoke and marched northwards to liberate North India. The Marathas marched in to Delhi in 1720, and then onwards in to Punjab and beyond up to Attock in Paktoonisthan in 1756. The Sikhs carried the Saffron flag further ahead in to Afghanistan and again made Kabul in to an Indian province in 1823 – a province that had been lost to the Hindus in 980, when its last Hindu king Jay Pal had been treacherously defeated by the Muslim raider Subuktigin.


Statue of a Hindu god of war – Narasimha who was the patron deity of the Kings of Vijaynagar who led the Hindu resistance to Islam in South India.

How Vijaynagar survived for two hundred years all through battling the Muslim Aggressors from 1331 up to 1565

Vijaynagar, was the first Hindu kingdom which gave up the Hindu practice of not molesting non-combatants. Thus they started paying the Muslims with the same token. Whenever the armies of Vijaynagar overran any Bahamani town or village they torched it. With this they put the fear of death into Muslim minds and soon, the Adilshahi and Nizamshahi sultans sued for a treaty with Vijaynagar that would proscribe the killing of civilians by either side.

From then on this treaty was adhered to by both the Hindus and Muslims, till Vijaynagar was finally defeated at the battle of Talikotai and dramatically and savagely destroyed by the Muslims immediately after the battle! But with the final defeat of the Hindus at Talikotai, the Muslims repudiated this treaty, as their founder Mohammed-ibn-Abdallah had repudiated the treaty of Hudaibiya, and so after the battle of Talikotai the truculent Muslims indulged in a gory slaughter of all the Hindu inhabitants of Vijaynagar, they murdered everyone they could lay their hands on. Not a single person was allowed to live in that beleaguered city. The city itself was reduced to rubble, after six months of ceaseless pillage and wanton destruction. Start from here

Lessons from the Muslims’ massacre and destruction of Vijaynagar in spite of treaty prohibiting the molesting of non-combatants

This teaches us two lessons. One that only when you pay back the Muslims with the same barbaric token, that they can come temporarily to their senses. But never ever trust the Muslims for their word, since the word of a Muslim is given only as matter of expediency. Whenever fortune favors them, they would go back on their word! In fact, their founder Mohammed-ibn-Abdallah has set an example for them with his repudiation of the Treaty of Hudaibiya that he signed with his clansmen the Quraish of Makkah. And all Muslims have to follow his “illustrious(sic)” example in their dealings with all Kafirs (non-Muslims).

Likewise, when all non-Muslims should enter into any agreement with Muslims only if the Muslims cannot be beaten militarily, and when the fortune favors the non-Muslims, they should repudiate any treaty with the Muslims and resume hostilities with the one single aim of destroying Islam. There is no other way of salvation for humankind, from this vile creed of the Islam.

Returining to India, while the Hindu kings of Orissa and of Vijaynagar, successfully defended themselves and arrested the Muslim aggression, it was the Marathas under their shrewd and visionary leader Chattrapati Shivaji Maharaj who not only liberated their province of Maharashtra from Muslim tyranny, but took the flame of independence from Muslim tyranny all across Central, Northern India and to parts of Southern and Eastern India.

Shivaji epitomized this successful Hindu counter-attack on Islam where he outdid the Muslims in their games of deceit, treachery, subterfuge, all gift-wrapped with the technique of guerilla warfare that gave the Muslims sleepless night and nightmares to the Muslim tyrant Aurangzeb, who thought that he had begun too see the demise of Muslim power in India.

With the Marathas it seemed that wisdom had finally dawned on some of the Hindus on the only effective way to counterattack the Muslims successfully. Using deceit and cruelty as a rule against the Muslim enemy, the Hindu Marathas seemed poised to dislodge Muslim power from India. But that was not to be as we shall see at the bottom of this article.

Hemu Vikramaditya and Khusro Khan – Hindus who came close to liberating India from its Muslim tormentors

In the one thousand years of the gradual Muslim occupation of North India from 715 to 1720 many Hindus aspired to overthrow the tyrannical Muslim occupation of their fatherland.

Khusro Khan – A Hindu convert briefly overthrows the Khilji dynasty in 1320

In the early 14th century (1312) Gujarat was overrun by the Muslim tyrants of who had a century earlier occupied Delhi. As was customary, the Muslims slaughtered countless Hindu victims after every victory. They also carried off many beautiful women and handsome young man as captives, to be used as sex slaves. One such handsome child was Khusro Khan. This was not his original name when he was carried off as a prisoner at the age of eleven. Even at that tender age, he had chiseled features and was fair complexioned. He belonged to the Makwana sub-caste of North Gujarat.

As was the custom, all captives were forcibly converted to Islam and brought up as slaves. After nearly fifteen years in captivity Khusro Khan forgot what his original name was. He only faintly recollected that he had a different childhood which he shared with the other captives from Gujarat.

His stunning features and fair complexion evoked the perverted lust of his captor Sultan Allaudin Khilji’s perverted son, Qutbuddin Mubarak Khalji. He like his more notorious father Alauddin Khalji, were in love with their young male slaves. Qutbuddin Mubarak had a particular fondness for his slave Khusro Khan and as a teenager, Khusro was sexually abused by Qutbuddin Mubarak for eight years.

Khusro seethed for revenge against this barbarity that robbed him of his childhood and early youth.

In 1320, Qutbuddin murdered his ageing father Allaudin and crowned himself emperor. By then Khushro had acquired a position of influence over Qutbuddin. Khusro had also used this influence to gather other captives like him and had arm them to make up Qutbuddin’s bodyguard. Khusro often wanted to put a sword through the Sultan and kill him while he was doing the immoral act of publicly kissing him. All through his teens, Khusro was forced to publicly offer his body to the Sultan like a prostitute. He did this apparent cheer, but within himself he was seething with rage and had been choking up with a desire for revenge at the way the Sultan forced himself upon him and took advantage of him.

During the struggle for power in 1320 when Qutbuddin murdered his ageing father, Khusro got his chance. Qutbuddin had put his trust in his partner in perverted sex, Khusro and put him in charge of guarding his royal quarters. Qutbuddin Mubarak excluded all his father’s men from important duties in the palace and the army.

Taking advantage of his position and the general resentment for Qutbuddin, Khusro murdered Qutbuddin Mubarak Khilji, and crowned himself king and assumed the title Khusro Khan. And what was a shock to the whole of India, especially to the Muslims occupying Delhi was that Khusro declared himself to be a Hindu again!! When he ascended the throne, Khusro Khan was only nineteen years of age. The Muslim nobility was shell-shocked, but with the strong contigent of Gujarati converts around Khusro Khan, they were momentarily stunned into inaction. However, they began plotting the overthrow of Khusro Khan – who in their eyes was a Murtad who had abjured Islam.

Eventually, after a year, a Muslim General Ghazi Malik (who later took on the title Giyasuddin Tughlak) murdered Khusro and re-established the rule of Muslims in Delhi. After a brief interlude of Hindu rule, Ghazi Malik founded the Tughluq dynasty. But this event proved that if the Hindus had the determination grit and shrewdness, they could overturn Muslim rule in India. A dream that was to be realized later by the Marathas when they marched in to Delhi in 1720.

Hemu Vikramaditya came close to overthrowing the Mughal dynasty at the 2nd battle of Panipat

On 24th January 1556 CE the Mughal ruler Humayun slipped while climbing down the steps of his library and fell to his death. The heir to the Mughal throne, 13 year old Akbar was then campaigning in Punjab with his chief minister Bairam Khan. On February 14, 1556, in a garden at Kalanaur, Akbar was enthroned as emperor. The other rivals for the throne of Delhi were the three Afgan princes of Sher Shah. However the main threat to Akbar's future came not from the Afgan princes but from a Hindu anmed Hemu. Hemu was the Hindu chief minister of Afgan prince Adil Shah and he led a surprise attack on Delhi in October 1556.

The Mughal forces under its governor Tardi Beg Khan panicked and went into a sudden ignominious flight. This was Hemu's twenty second consecutive victory in successive battles. After the capture of Delhi, Hemu set up himself as an independent ruler under the Hindu title of 'Raja Vikramaditya'. At this juncture against the advice of most nobles, Akbar and Bairam Khan took a courageous decision, to press forward against Hemu's undoubtedly superior forces. On November 5, 1556 the Mughul forces met the Hemu’s army at Panipat.

In this second battle of Panipat, the Mughals were saved by a lucky accident after a hard fight which looked more than likely to go against them. Hemu who was leading the battle from atop an elephant, veered too close to the enemy ranks, and a archer from the Mughal army used this opportunity to attack him. An arrow hit Hemu in the eye and although it did not kill him it had pierced the cerebral cavity enough to make him unconscious.

In any battle of this period the death of the leader meant an end of the fight, and the sight of Hemu slumped in the howdah of his famous elephant Hawai was enough to make his army turn tail. Akbar’s General, Shah Quli Khan captured the Hawai elephant with its prize occupant, and took it directly to Akbar.

Hemu was brought unconscious before Akbar and Bairam. Bairam advised Akbar to perform the holy duty of slaying the infidel and earn the Islamic holy title of 'Ghazi'. Among much self-congratulation Akbar then severed the head of unconscious Hemu with his saber. Some historians claim that Akbar did not kill Hemu himself, but just touched the infidel's head with his sword and his associates finished the gory 'holy' work. However the latter version seems inconsistent with the events that followed. After the battle Hemu's head was sent to Kabul as a sign of victory to the ladies of Humayun's harem, and Hemu's torso was sent to Delhi for exposure on a gibbet.

Iskandar Khan chased the Hemu's fleeing army and captured 1500 elephants and a large contingent. There was a bloody slaughter of those who were captured and in keeping with the custom of his ancestors Tamerlane and Chengiz Khan, Akbar had a victory pillar built with the severed heads of his fallen Hindu enemies.

Peter Mundy, an Englishman travelling Mughal empire some 75 years later (during Jahangir and Shah Jahan's rein), found such towers were still being built.

Hemu's wife escaped from Delhi with the treasure and although Pir Mohammad Khan's troops chased her caravan they could not lay their hands on her or the treasure. Hemu's aged father was captured and on refusing to accept Islam, was executed. This is the 'glorious' history of Akbar's victory at the battle of Panipat.

Later on Akbar displayed his “chivalry” once again when he ordered the cold blooded slaughter of thirty thousand Rajput soldiers who had surrendered to him after the battle of Chittod.

How the Ahom (Assamese) General Lachit Borphukan annihilated the Muslim Mughal army at the battle of Saraighat on the Banks of the Bramhaputra river

The Muslims had made many attempts from the time of Mohammed Bin Tughlak to swallow Assam. But the Ahom kings of Assam stoutly and shrewdly defeated each Muslim incursion in to Assam. Finally the Mughals during the reign of Aurangzeb attacked Assam with a huge force. The shrewd Assamese king laid a trap for the Muslim army at a place named Sariaghat on the Bramhaputra river.

The Battle of Saraighat was fought in 1671 between the Mughals (led by the renegade Rajput Hindu traitor Kachwaha king Raja Ramsingh I), and the Ahoms (led by Lachit Borphukan, the Ahom governor of Guwahati) on the Brahmaputra river at Saraighat near Guwahati. Although considered to be the weaker force, the Ahom army defeated the Mughal by using a combination of guerrilla tactics, psychological warfare and military intelligence.

In a surprise night attack, Lachit Barphukan dramatically captured the Mughal post in north Guwahati and, later, their fort in south Guwahati. The present day Kamrup Deputy Commissioner's bungalow is now situated on this site. The greatest threat to Lachit's army were the many Mughal cannons. In another secret mission executed the night before battle the cannons were disabled by Bagh Hazarika, a subordinate of Lachit's, During the night, Hazarika poured water into the cannons' barrels, soaking their gunpowder. With the Mughal cannons disabled, the Ahoms bombarded the Guwahati fort with their cannons. After a heavy cannonade and then a determined charge, the Mughals were defeated and the fort captured. After this the Mughals abandoned Guwahati.

Now Lachit Barphukan anticipated a larger retaliatory attack by the Mughals and he started arranging defenses, obstacles and garhs (earthen walls) around Guwahati, relying upon the hillocks around Guwahati and the Brahmaputra River as natural barriers against an invading army. Lachit was thorough and ruthless in preparing for the defense. He even beheaded his own uncle for neglecting his duty. When Lachit asked his uncle why the work was not progressing as expected, his uncle complained of boredom. Lachit in a fit of fury cut off his uncle's head and said "my uncle is not greater than my country."

The Mughals struck back in March 1679. The Mughal commander-in-chief of the advancing Mughal army had at his disposal 30,000 infantry, 15,000 archers, 18,000 Turkish cavalry, 5,000 gunners, more than 1000 cannons and a large flotilla of boats. Portuguese and other European sailors were employed to man the fleet. These forces moved up the Brahmaputra from Dhaka to Guwahati. Lachit's spies kept him informed of the progress of the Muslim advance. The Mughals laid siege to Guwahati that lasted for more than a year.

Lachit fought from within the barriers knowing that his small cavalry would not stand against the Mughal cavalry on open ground. His guerrilla attacks against the Mughal caused them to suffer many casualties. Although the Mughals made many efforts, including one attempt to bribe Lachit with power position and money, as they had done successfully with some Rajputs, but with Lachit the Mughals failed to tempt him to betray his country. Every attempt to bribe him was replied with scorn. In spite of repeated desperate attempts they failed to defeat Lachit and capture Guwahati.

But now the Ahom king, however, became impatient and ordered Lachit to attack the Mughals on open ground. Lachit reluctantly obeyed this command, and attacked the Mughal army in Allaboi. After some initial success, in which the Ahoms captured the local Mughal Commander, Mir Nawab, the Ahoms drew the full force of Mughal cavalry.

The Ahom army was decimated by the Mughal cavalry on the open plain losing some 10,000 troops. Lachit had taken the precaution of digging a line of defense at the rear of his advancing columns, to which they could fall back to if forced to do so. In doing so, he managed to save the remainder of his forces and retreat into his prepared defenses.

The Mughal could not penetrate these defenses and ultimately launched a massive naval assault on the river at Saraighat. They had large boats, some carrying as many as sixteen cannons. The Ahom soldiers were demoralised after their losses at Allaboi and their commander-in-chief, Lachit Borphukan, was seriously ill. At the sight of the massive Mughal fleet, they began to lose their will to fight, and some units commenced retreat.

Lachit had been observing this development from his deathbed. Despite having a high fever, he had himself carried to a boat and, along with seven other boats, advanced headlong against the Mughal fleet. His bold advance inspired his retreating army to rally behind him. A desperate battle ensued on the Brahmaputra. The Ahoms in their small boats outmaneuvered the larger, more sluggish Mughal boats, and the river became littered with clashing boats and drowning soldiers.

The Mughals were decisively defeated and they were finally forced to retreat from Guwahati, and also from other Ahom territory, up to Manas River. Thus ended the Battle of Saraighat, giving Lachit Barphukan the legendary fame in Assam. This battle is remembered as a glorious Ahom victory, despite seemingly insurmountable odds.

Lachit Borphukan, like Lord Nelson, died in the lap of victory; and the battle of Saraighat was Assam's Trafalgar.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

beliefs of the Hindu Religion

The fundamental beliefs of the Hindu Religion are found in the 5 principles & 10 Disciplines.

1. God Exists: One Trinity: Brahma, Vishnu, Maheshwara
2. All human beings are divine
3. Unity of existence through love
4. Religious harmony
5. Knowledge of 3 Gs: Ganga (sacred river), Gita (sacred script), Gayatri (sacred mantra)

1. Satya (Truth)
2. Ahimsa (Non-violence)
3. Brahmacharya (Celibacy, non-adultery)
4. Asteya (No desire to possess or steal)
5. Aparighara (Non-corrupt)
6. Shaucha (Cleanliness)
7. Santosh (Contentment)
8. Swadhyaya (Reading of scriptures)
9. Tapas (Austerity, perseverance, penance)
10. Ishwarpranidhan (Regular prayers)