Karma In Indian Politics.

Two days ago, I was in a car going to watch a movie with my friend, his cousin and the latter’s wife.  The cousin, a very highly qualified practicing physician, citizen of the USA, is visiting India to check on his ailing parents.  He asked me why I used a cane. I explained my problem with my replaced and revised hip joints and the five surgeries that I have undergone.

He asked me other questions about my health as well, being genuinely interested, and on listening to me,  said like a typical Indian would,  that we cannot escape our Prarabdha. I whole heartedly agreed with him as would a Muslim Indian who would simply call it Kismet or a Christian Indian, Fate. Such commiseration is part of our culture and every day vocabulary.

Recently, a Minister in one of our states used the same metaphor to impress on an audience of Indians in the local language and syntax about Divine Justice and the Indian media and trolls went after him like this report did.

Such sensationalising ordinary every day language to fit into a so called secular approach to public life is a peculiar feature of our English language press whose audience laps it up leaving me to wonder about our English speaking two or so percent of population and their contact with our roots and our culture.

A senior leader of the now pathetic Indian National Congress party, Mr. Chidambaram tweeted, “Cancer is divine justice for sins’ says Assam Minister Sharma. That is what switching parties does to a person,” Mr. Chidambaram and his ilk are what are called ELIMs, English speaking Left Intellectual Mafia by the not so fluent in English ordinary Indians like me who are more comfortable in our native languages. Incidentally such Leftists here have no compunction whatsoever in exploiting not the left ideology that we have been following since the early nineties!

I must also share what the Minister in the storm had to say in reply to Mr. Chidambaram. His English is not quite Oxbridge because he is comfortable with his native language, but sends his message loud and clear.

“Sir, please do not distort. Simply I said that Hinduism believe in karmic law and human sufferings are linked to karmic deficiency of past life. Don’t you belief that too? Of course in your party I do not know whether Hindu philosophy can be discussed at all (sic).”

Quite why Mr. Sharma asks the question at the end of his tweet will take another blog post and I am perfectly willing to write on it if my readers want me to.

21 thoughts on “Karma In Indian Politics.”

  1. Anyone who says that cancer is divine justice for sins need never come near me! I would be furious with them. My mother and father both died horribly of cancer and both were quite exemplary people who never knowingly hurt anyone in their lives. I don’t believe in fate at all. We live in a world which is both dangerous and unpredictable. Anything can happen to anyone. I believe that there is an eternal world beyond this one and when we go over there, all things shall become clear. I believe that God settles all scores at a time best known to himself. I hope you are well, dear brother. I’ve been off the grid for a while.

  2. Yes, politicians use ideas to suit their own purpose. I figure karma is as good a theory as any that can’t be tested. I read a lot of different ideas when I was young, and I decided in high school/young adulthood that I would figure out the purpose of my life and focus on living it to the best of my ability. Commitment and practice. That’s enough to keep me busy.
    Cheerful Monk recently posted..Wind and Weather

  3. ” Politicians should be seen, not heard ” ! They ought to have long ears to listen to the needs of the people but a stiff tongue that does not wag. I have since read that the Honourable Minister as apologised, so we must conclude it was a ” Momentary Lapse of Reason ” and we all should become ” Comfortably Numb” to such acts by politician. Nor do I agree that one invokes Karma/Prarabhda/Kismet/Fate to patients of the disease who are in great physical and psychological distress. Very inconsiderate and inappropriate !

  4. the older I get the less I seem to know.
    I have glibly used the phrase… “karma you know.” or “what goes around comes around.”
    in the tornado in moore when 20 or more little children were literally wiped out with their entire school.
    I find it difficult to think it was because of sin. whether of their parents and ancestors or others. I think it was a case of nature. barometric pressure and weather fronts. and a flimsy building.
    if one believes in a god of pure love for all and forgiveness… it has always seemed odd to me that he/she could do that to 20 little souls who had just begun their lives… for whatever celestial reason there might be!
    like maria. I think we will eventually have the answers. but until we do…
    I am through trying to figure it out. like monk… I will tend to my own life as best I can. and as they say… let the chips fall where they may.
    I did enjoy the link however and learning a little more of indian politics!
    tammy j recently posted..moving on old bean

    1. One day a group of scientists got together and decided that man had come a long way and no longer needed God. So they picked one scientist to go and tell Him that they were done with Him.
      The scientist walked up to God and said, “God, we’ve decided that we no longer need You. We’re at the point that we can clone people and do many miraculous things, we don’t need you here anymore, you can go your way ”
      God listened very patiently and kindly to the man. After the scientist was done talking, God said, “Very well, how about this? Let’s say we have a man-making contest?”
      To which the scientist replied, “Okay, great!”
      But God added, “Now, we’re going to do this just like I did back in the old days with Adam.”
      The scientist said, “Sure, no problem,” and bent down and grabbed himself a handful of dirt.
      God looked at him and said, “No, no! You go get your own dirt!”

  5. an unfortunate statement from a man who should have had his speeches written for him, because there is fate and fate as with anything…you choose to use fate as you want, but not under such a public arena.

    of course journalists are going to step in and extract just the “juicy” bits, that is how one sells the newspaper…

    just so happens that on that day the editor needed to up their sales, and this poor man happened to use the unfortunate statement. I’m not sure, though it should ever be spoken, even with the back up of your culture/way.

    Sadly it will not be the end, another person will make the same gaff mistake and the journalist, editor and newspaper will latch on to it…

    1. I beg to differ Cathy. The language used and the audience listening were perfectly comfortable with the Indian language speech. The English media went overboard in translating the speech and gave a completely different twist to the speech.

  6. First I am hoping my posts wont be confused with any Blogger on her of a similar name…. I have posted my photo anyway for ease
    I thought it a brilliant piece. very thought provoking and I, like the others before me will mention that your English is superb. Like many Indians, you speak several languages – what a skill that is, unlike lazy Brits, for example whose first question when abroad is ” do you speak English!”, so don’t apologise for your English. You are very eloquent.
    Anyway to the post in hand ( at last, someone said..) I do believe in Karma and things like that but I appreciate it cant be proven. However, if we all thought it did exist that might make people like together in harmony; be nicer to each other and maybe serve as a warming to treat each other with respect because if you don’t, eventually it will come back to you. I would like to think it all exits – I want to keep coming back again and again until I learn the lessons I should, and experience new things, but I also think that if we keep an eye on this and try to live a life where we would be receiving retribution life might be kinder. For my part, someone once said to me that was why ” religion was invented” to keep people in line!

    1. There are two bloggers each with one of the two names that you use who visit my blog posts and comment. I doubt that they will mind and no, I am not confused.

      My point was totally different. The karma part of it was insignificant. The English language media twisted perfectly acceptable local language syntax into something monstrous.

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