Showing posts with label Ayodhya. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Ayodhya. Show all posts

Hinduism - What Is The Vishva Hindu Parishad?


 Vishva Hindu Parishad is a Hindu religious organization based in India.

(VHP) Modern Hindu religious group connected with the Rashtriya Svayamsevak Sangh (RSS), a conservative Hindu organization whose avowed mission is to produce the leadership cadre for a rejuvenated Hindu India.

When RSS leader Madhav Sadashiv Golwalkar met with a group of Hindu religious leaders in Bombay in 1964, the VHP was created.

Their immediate concern was Pope Paul VI's planned visit to India, which they saw as a covert effort to convert Hindus to Christianity, which they intended to combat by founding an organization committed to Hinduism propagation.

With little fanfare and little influence on public perception, the VHP concentrated its concentration for the next fifteen years on opposing Christian missionary operations in northeastern India.

The conversion of some untouchables to Islam in the Tamil Nadu hamlet of Minakshipuram in 1982 was a watershed moment in the VHP's public image.

The VHP seized on this widely reported incident as proof that Hindu identity was in jeopardy, and responded by undertaking a series of inventive public activities, first in Tamil Nadu and then throughout the country.

The VHP's resurgence coincided with the RSS's shift toward activism, as well as the BJP's decision to adopt a more militantly Hindu character.

Many of the VHP's national campaigns coincided with national or state elections, and many of them were concentrated on the effort to erect a temple to the deity Rama in the city of Ayodhya, at the alleged birthplace of Rama.

The intended temple location was occupied by the Babri Masjid, a Muslim mosque erected after the ancient Rama temple was demolished, according to the VHP.

As a result, the temple campaign evoked strong memories of historical persecution as well as the boldness of a resurgent Hindu identity.

The VHP's political involvement has helped the BJP become the dominant political party in most of northern India.

Throughout India, the VHP's advocacy has evoked a wide range of feelings.

Proponents refer to the organization's long history of charitable work and its role in strengthening and defining modern Hindu identity.

Detractors object to the RSS's disdain for legal formalities, as was shown by the destruction of the Babri Masjid in December 1992, as well as its sometimes caustic anti-Muslim rhetoric and, despite its unique institutional identity, its ultimate control by the RSS.

Others have chastised the VHP for seeking to define and regulate the character of "Hinduism" by declaring some "necessary" Hindu practices as antithetical to Hindu heritage.

Other opponents reject the VHP's claim to speak for all Hindus, pointing out that its genuine authority resides in the hands of brahmins and other privileged castes; these critics perceive the VHP as an organization meant to hide its true objective, which is to maintain upper-class power and privilege.

For more information, see Walter K. Andersen and Shridhar D. Damle's The Brotherhood in Saffron (1987); James Warner Björkman's Fundamentalism, Revivalists, and Violence in South Asia (1988); Tapan Basu et alKhaki .'s Shorts and Saffron Flags (1993); Lise McKean's Divine Enterprise (1996); and Christophe Jaffrelot's The Hindu Nationalist Movement in India (1996).

Kiran Atma

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Hinduism - What Is The Pushpak Viman In Hindu Mythology?


Pushpak Viman, ("Flower chariot") is the most renowned of the flying automobiles in Hindu mythology.

Vishvakarma, the celestial architect, designed the Pushpak Viman.

The term essentially describes an inanimate transport air/space craft that could navigate the Earthly and Celestial realms.

Sanjna, Vishvakarma's daughter, has married the Sun, but she is so dazzled by his radiance that she asks her father to dim his radiance so she may be with him.

Vishvakarma does this by removing part of the sun's rays, which are then fashioned into the Pushpak Viman and other divine weapons.

For a while, the minor god Kubera had possessed the Pushpak Viman, which he obtained as a reward for practicing extreme physical austerity (tapas).

It is eventually snatched from Kubera by the demon-king Ravana, who uses it to perpetrate many acts of oppression, culminating in the kidnapping of Rama's wife Sita.

Rama uses the Pushpak Viman to return to Ayodhya after killing Ravana, and then returns the automobile to Kubera.

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Hinduism - Who Is Lakshmana In Hindu Mythology?

Lakshmana is one of King Dasharatha's sons with his wife Sumitra, and the younger half-brother of Rama, the epic's protagonist, in the Ramayana, the earlier of the two major Indian epics.

Lakshmana is the ideal younger brother throughout the Ramayana, living only to serve and assist Rama.

When Rama is exiled to the forest for fourteen years, Lakshmana follows him like a shadow the whole time, first as a forest ascetic, looking for Rama's stolen wife Sita, then fighting heroically in the battle with Ravana's army, and ultimately returning to serve Rama at his court in Ayodhya.

Many of the Ramayana's characters are archetypes for Indian cultural beliefs.

As with his brother Bharata, Lakshmana represents the perfect younger brother.

Brothers are the center of the joint family in northern India.

Sisters, on the other hand, stay at home after marriage and live with their married families.

Every generation's oldest brother ultimately ascends to the position of joint family leader.

The oldest brother, who has main authority and responsibility for the whole family, cannot thrive without the participation of his younger brothers, who must respect and support his authority.

Lakshmana is a devoted younger brother in his devotion to Rama and his full disregard for his own wants.

Lakshmana is far from faultless, despite his courage, heroism, and complete devotion to Rama.

He lacks Rama's tolerance and discernment, and he acts before he thinks.

When Bharata pursues the two brothers after they have gone into exile, Lakshmana assumes that Bharata is taking advantage of the chance to murder them in order to smooth his path to the throne.

Lakshmana plots to assassinate Bharata, but Rama's logic prevents a disaster.

Shurpanakha, a demon princess and sister of Ravana, Lanka's demon-king, is Lakshmana's most grievous blunder in judgment.

When she makes sexual approaches toward Lakshmana, he mocks her before mutilating her.

Ravana kidnaps Rama's wife, Sita, in order to exact vengeance on the brothers.

Lakshmana, like all the characters in the Ramayana, is neither good nor bad; he has many qualities as well as some serious defects. 

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Hinduism - Where Is Ayodhya?

The term Ayodhya has the literal meaning of “unassailable” in the Sanskrit language.

Ayodhya is a historic and Sacred city (tirtha) on the Sarayu River in Uttar Pradesh's Faizabad district, and one of India's seven sacred towns. 

  • Ayodhya is renowned for being the location for most of the Ramayana, the second of two major Hindu epics in which the deity Rama is the central figure. 
  • Ayodhya is the capital city of Rama's father, King Dasharatha, as well as the birthplace and boyhood home of Rama and his siblings, as well as the city to which Rama returns triumphantly after his exile. 
  • Although scholars have questioned the historical accuracy of the Ramayana and the authenticity of the events depicted in it, Rama's followers (bhakta) have no such reservations. 

The worship of Rama is firmly rooted in Ayodhya, and numerous locations around the city are connected with events from the epic that are believed to have happened. 

  • With the exception of the Ram Janam Bhumi, the location regarded as Rama's birthplace, this has had no negative consequences. 
  • The Babri Masjid, a Muslim mosque allegedly constructed after the previous temple was destroyed, occupied this location until 1992. 
    • The mosque was demolished by organized teams of Hindu activists from the Vishva Hindu Parishad on December 6, that year, in little over six hours. 

  • Thousands of people were murdered in Hindu-Muslim communal riots throughout India as a result of the damage. 

        • These actions  have now culminated in the reconstruction of a Lord Ram temple.
        • Hindus will once again resume the commemoration and worship of  Lord Ram at Ayodhya.

      See Hans Bakker's Ayodhya (1986); Peter van der Veer's Gods on Earth (1988); Sarvepalli Gopal's Anatomy of a Confrontation (1991); and Christophe Jaffrelot's The Hindu Nationalist Movement in India (1996) for more information on Ayodhya.

      You may also want to read more about Hinduism here.

      Be sure to check out my writings on religion here.