2ndlook

India Imports Hazardous Waste

Posted in Business, Current Affairs, History, language, Media, Uncategorized by Anuraag Sanghi on July 31, 2008

West Dumps Toxic Stuff

Kamal Nath has NOT finally caved in, after putting up a courageous fight for the last 4 years. Kamal Nath’s position, for the last 4 years, (correctly), was, “The Indian farmer can compete with the American farmer, but not with the U.S. Treasury.” But under the carrot of the US-India Nuclear deal, the fear was that US would probably get their way at the trade talks.

But there are 3 imports of the past that has caused India tremendous harm. India’s (and the world’s) problem can be laid at the doorstep of these 3 imports – including widespread corruption which causes so much anguish. These three imports continue to be in use widely across India – and remain unidentified. No barriers have been put up against these specific imports – and nothing is being done against such future imports.

The 3 Imports

These 3 dangerous imports are WORDS. Religion, Slavery and Free. These three imported words are at the root of modern India’s problems. Does this strike as an exaggeration?

The Problem With Religions

The Problem With Religions

Religion

Historically, India had no religions. Modern religions are a construct of the Middle East – and given birth to the 3 major religions of the world. Judaism, Christianity and Islam. In India, the belief structure centres around Dharma – धर्म.

The difference between dharma and religion? Major!

For one, religion is about worship – and there are many others differences. Method of worship (how you worship), object of worship (what you worship), frequency of worship (e.g. every Sabbath; five times a day), language of worship (what you say, in which language), etc.

The cornerstones of modern religions from the Desert Bloc are One God, One Book, One Holy Day, One Prophet (Messiah), One Race, One People, One Country, One Authority, One Law, One Currency, One Set of Festival – the root of most problems in the world. From this Oneness, we get the One Currency, One Language logic  – a fallacious syllogism. Once you accept One, you will accept all others.

Indian worship practices are infinite. Even non-worship to is acceptable - for instance, the Charvaka school of Indian philosophy was atheistic and did not prescribe worship. Structure and deviation from worship practices are a non-issue in Indian dharmic structure. Dharma has no equivalent in the ‘Desert Bloc’ vocabulary of religions. Dharma is the path of righteousness, defined by a matrix of the contextual, existential, moral, pragmatic, professional, position, etc. Dharma is more than moral and ethics.

The really big difference is the holy books – Judaism, Christianity and Islam have one Holy Book each. No deviations. Indian dharma tradition has thousands which are more than 1000 years old – at last count.

Dharma Chakra In The Ashoka Pillar

Dharma Chakra In The Ashoka Pillar

And What Is Dharma?

That is the question that all Indian rishis, munis, holy texts, folklore try and answer.

There are many Indian texts on the path of Dharma - the Bhagwad Geetha (most famous), the Shanti Parva (dharma of kings), the Upanishads. Gautama Buddha established the Dharmapatha (now known as Dhammapada – the Path Of Dharma). It is Dharma that Indians belief systems focus on – and worship is only a (in some cases no) part of it. Buddhism focussed on the Dharma-chakra - a virtuous cycle of right actions leading to greater goodness in the world. This is represented in the Ashoka pillar – adopted by modern India as its symbol. Buddha in India, was another, in a long line of teachers.

Colonial narrative traces the destruction of Takshashila in 499 AD, by the Hunas (Western history calls them White Huns, Romans called them Ephtalites; Arabs called them the Haytal;  The Chinese Ye Tha). Western ‘historians’ have ascribed the fall of Takshashila, in 499 AD - supposedly,  at the jhands of White Huns, a Central Asian, nomadic tribe, roaming between Tibet to Tashkent, practicing polyandry.

Mohammed Bakhtiar Khilji destroyed the Universities and schools of Nalanda, Vikramshila, Odantapura and Jagddala around 1200 AD. This marked the destruction, persecution and decline in Indian education, thought and structure. Believers in Indian faith systems stopped coming India. ‘Consumers’ of ideological products from the ‘Indian Thought Factory’,  were left with Desert Bloc alternative products. Buddhism soon became a religion outside India.

Religion is about founders and followers. Judaism had Moses, Christianity had Jesus and Islam had Mohammed. The founders of the ‘desert religions’ exhorted their converts to follow them and promised them deliverance.

Dharma is everyone’s concern, timeless – and has no founder. Gautama Buddha did not set out to establish a religion. He was interested in establishing the Dhammapada. So, did Mahavir. As did Guru Nanak. The definition (legal, conceptual, theological) of Indian dharmic systems as religion by outsiders created divides where none existed. There is no Hindu religion. We strangely call ourselves Indians. Why are we calling ourselves by a name given to us by others. We have our own name to call ourselves by.

Shaikh Nuruddin aka Nand Rishi - Patron Saint Of Kashmir

Shaikh Nuruddin aka Nand Rishi - Patron Saint Of Kashmir

Islam In India

The largest concentrations of Islamic believers in India (were able to establish Islamic worship systems) are in Bengal, Kerala, Gujarat and Kashmir – which did not witness large scale invasions from Persia and Arabia. These 4 areas were ruled (either completely or largely) by Hindu kings. There is significant evidence that Islamic beliefs in these 4 areas came through trade – Gujarat, Kerala and Bengal were major port cities where Arab traders were frequent visitors and settlers. Kashmir was the hub of the ancient Silk route.

The Sufi movement was Kashmir’s contribution and held sway over the large parts of Islamic believers. It is also these 4 geographies that were the least affected by the invasions of Mahmud Of Ghazni, Mohhammed Of Ghor, Timur, et al. These were also the provinces that were the most distant from the Muslim Delhi sultanates – and possibly had seen the least of proselytizing forces. Hence, the belief that Islam was spread in India largely by force is a possibly false.

It was this Indian ambivalence (even indifference) towards forms of worship which made it easy for any form of worship to take roots. It is also the reason why the sub-continent and Indic nations (i.e. the sub-continent and Indonesia) have today the largest followers of Islam.

Thus India has no religions in the ‘desert bloc’ sense of the word – and all Indians are believers in Dharma. And the path of Dharma is for each to discover and follow.

India must uproot the very word religion. We must understand the difference between dharma, religion and mazhab. Religion divides – dharma unites. Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism Sikhism were not, but in the danger of becoming religions. The Colonial Governments made these Indic dharmic quests into religions. Which Indian text describes its followers as Hindus? Did Guru Nanak call his disciples Sikhs. India has allowed outsiders to label us and dictate our response as per those labels.

Indian languages have no word for religion.

Raja Harishchandra - Raja Ravi Verma

Raja Harishchandra - Raja Ravi Verma

Slave

India has no word for slave either.

The word गुलाम ghulam is an import. दास dasa is an attendant, or a servant – but not a slave. Draupadi was a daasi to the Queen of Virat desh. The Pandavas became daasas at the Court of Viraat. Raja Harishchandra became a daasa to a Chandala. These were kings who became daasas. Nala, (Damayanti fame), the King of Nishada, became a daasa – but not a slave.

Slaves are sold and bought – involuntarily. There were organized markets for slaves in slave empires; organized traders of slaves (a famous one being the Barbarossa Brothers). Slavery (capture, kidnap, sequestration, transport, trade and transfer, re-capture of human beings) continued in the “desert bloc” till the 20th century. In the Indic territories, it was an inherited institution – and last seen in the Hittite rule around 1000BC.

Faced with West Asian reluctance to give up slavery, Indo Aryan rulers disengaged politically from West Asia and Middle East from around 1000 BC. Possibly, the slave revolt of Egypt by Moses itself was a result of the liberalising laws of the Hittites. Hence the fade out of the Indic rule from the Middle East – but the continuation of Buddhist influences, trade and peoples contact.

Reformers In India

After the slave revolts in the Middle East, India was witness to major renewal movements. More than a 100 Bodhisatvas and 24 Jain Tirthankaras were major figures in India’s renewal after the slave revolts in the Middle East. Modern history, influenced by Western historiography, recognizes only the “ahimsa twins” – Gautama Buddha and Vardhamana Mahavira. The “ahimsa twins” – Gautama Buddha and Vardhamana Mahavira were both princes of royal blood – Prince Siddharth and Prince Mahavira.

Initial adherents to the Buddhist camps were rulers. Their methods of proselytizing was also aimed at the ruling class. Ashoka The Great sent missions with his daughter Sanghamitra to Sri Lanka – where Buddhism was established. The logic – slavery could exist with State protection. Indic teachers of dharma focussed on the rulers to ensure that slavery did receive state patronage.

Guru Nanak Dev came from from the upper caste family and his focus was to end fueding on the basis of caste and creed. His first converts were from upper class families cutting across religions – and hence the opposition from some of the Mughal Kings.

Gandhiji was from the upper caste and the first item on his reform agenda was end to the “bhangis” carrying faecal refuse on their heads. His initial focus was social reform and less of anti-British activities.

Half the world today follows Indic religions and culture. The other half follows the “desert religions”. The development trajectories of these two halves has been significantly different. The motivations, behavioural and acceptable civilisational norms for these blocs are different – and mostly opposite.

Slavery In India

Slavery in (Greater) India, disappeared from about 1000 BC. Zilch. Nyet. Non. Nada, nada, 否, nr, nein, Αριθ, いいえ, 아니다, não.

While the Levant and the Occident continued with slavery for the next 3000 years, till 1900 AD, in India (referring to the Greater India, including the Hittites and Mitannis) after 1100 BC, slavery vanished. Compared to the retributive and vengeful Hammurabi’s code, the Indic rulers of Middle East (the Hittites, Mittanis and Elamites) already had a more liberal and humane legal system.

In the late and middle 19th century, capture by British agents to capture indentured labour, (slave traders and slavery by another name) was also the reason, that possibly, the myth of ‘kaal-paani’ became prevalent and Indian traders preferred buyers to come to them. This also accounts for the system of unarmed combat that travelled with Buddhist monks to China – and became Chinese Kung Fu, or the Kalaripayattu (in Kerala) or the system of लठैद (combat practitioners using ‘lathis’ – bamboo sticks).

Slave Religions Promote Slavery

The 3 ‘desert religions’ instead of reforming slave societies, just enabled the transfer of slave titles. Freedom meant old slaves became the new slave masters. Slavery (capture, kidnap, sequestration, transport, trade and transfer, re-capture of human beings) continued in the “desert bloc” till the 20th century. Slavery was sanctioned by the religious authorities and books of these 3 ‘desert religions’.

Non-political Indian role in West Asia and Middle East continued to grow in terms of trade and learning. Babylon became a part of Alexander’s empire (and then the Roman Empire). This slave reform and distancing of Indic rulers from slave societies was led by Indian reformers like Buddha and Mahavira. This happened not around and after 500 BC as determined by Western dating logic (which needed to fit the Aryan Invasion Theory, The ‘evolution’ of Greek and Romans) – but around 1000 BC.

When the followers of Mani (a teacher of largely Buddhist teachings) were encouraging the slaves to revolt and declare themselves free, administrators of the teachings of the “Lord of lords, and King of kings.” (Revelation 17: 14) at the Council Of Gangra, 325 AD, approved of slavery. Arabs slave traders were active in Congo – till they were replaced by Europeans.

Slave Memory In Indian Society

By the 10th century, Slave memory faded out in India. The Indic word for slave owning cultures, asur, became disconnected with slave ownership. References in Indian classical literature about servitude – like the Harishchandra story.

The Jatakas - At The Borobudur Temple

The Jatakas - At The Borobudur Temple

Jataka stories (mainly considered as children’s stories in the West) are a reflection of social mores, realities- and also cautionary tales for adults. This Jataka story (click on the link) refers to a “demon’ (another word for a slave trader) and cautions travellers and merchants about slave traders. This ‘demon’ kidnaps the merchant – but leaves the goods behind. Similarly, the story of Bali, the righteous Asura king, who was sent to the patalaloka, by Vamana, makes sense, the moment ‘demons’ are defined as slave-owners and enslavers.

Historically, trade in India is governed by शुभ लाभ ‘shubh labh’ – and hence Indians have not been major players in drugs proliferation (unlike Japan, the West in which traded Opium in Korea and China) or in slave trade. In modern times, though a power in computing industry, India is not a big player in spamming or in software virus.

What Did This Do In India

3000 years ago, India went ahead and created a new economic model without slavery. The Occident and the Levant were using slaves till 20th century. Middle East’s labour laws even today smack of slave owner mentality.

Asuras & Devas

Asuras & Devas

Asuras as ‘dravidians’, ‘foriegners’ or ‘others’ is an Euro-interpretation – which seems xenophobic. This further dimmed Indian perception of slavery – and instead created divisions within Indians. On the contrary, asuras could even be Indians – and even righteous kings like Bali. The entire Ravana demonisation was not about Sita being abducted. The outrage was the ‘asuras’ i.e. slave traders, trading her.

Similarly, the story of Dadhichi, from whose bones the vajrastra was made to kill the ‘demon king’ Vritrasur. Dadhichi was a former king, son of Atharvan, and Vritrasur was a brahman who became an asura. Or the ‘Nahusha’ story, where a mere mortal was made Indra, to defeat the ‘demons’. This also adds another layer to the Rajput opposition to Mughals. And the Rajput women committing Jauhar. In modern era, India’s unceasing opposition to South African apartheid was another example.

Unremitting and unceasing opposition to slavery – that is what Indian history is about. In fact, there is no Sanskritic word for a slave. Ghulam is an imported word, daas /daasi is an attendant. Slavery as a concept does not exist. Similarly, the word free does not exist in Sanskrit.

There is no free lunch

The third major import is free. Sanskritic language and logic has no word for free. Muft, free, are all imported words. This has created a corrupt political system which keeps bribing voters with freebies. It has distorted trade with freebies. In Indian commercial practice, there were systems for giving away free. That was called “chakda” – which is ‘make good’. So if you bought 100 mangoes, you got 116 or 156 – as the local system was. To make good for defectives, rottens fruits and vegetables. But nothing was free.

The Corruption

So , when did this corruption start.

The answer goes back to 5000 years ago. When Sanskrit language was invented. Yes. Invented. And there is no Sanskritic equivalent for slave, religion, free. There is no Sanskrit word for these three imported words.

What! What Has Sanskrit Got To Do With This?

Sanskrit is an artificial, synthetic, revolutionary language – unlike all other languages in the world; which are Prakrit (natural and evolutionary). The next set of artificial languages came into this world after 5000 years later.

About 50-75 years ago, the next set of artificial languages were invented. These are the computer languages. Between the invention of Sanskrit and the computer languages , there was no other culture which created an artificial language system.

What Makes Sanskrit Special?

Sanskrit is nothing but a database system with millions of database tables and a system of linking concatenated data records. Every word is a table (I studied Sanskrit 30 years ago, and if I remember correctly, it is a 3 column x 8 row table). And all words then combine with each other as per these table rules. And all Indian languages (most European languages, too) are derived from Sanskrit. While most of us do not know Sanskrit or understand it’s structure consciously, we all use Sanskritic structures everyday.

India should put up trade barriers against such imports. Kamal Nath unfortunately cant do much about this. This is one thing that each one of us will have to do.

Cultural Extinctions – Death Of Slave Societies

Posted in British Raj, Desert Bloc, History, India, Propaganda, Religion by Anuraag Sanghi on July 26, 2008

Why does India have no monuments comparable to the Desert Bloc? Was it because India had no slave populations to build such showpieces – and no slaves to impress.

Extinction Of Cultures

Ancient Egypt, Greece, Rome, Medieval Islamic and Italian kingdoms, as well as latter day Iberian Twins, Spain and Portugal, Trans-Channel foes, Britain and France imploded from peaks to the pits in a short time frame. These cultures faded – and at their very apogee, started spiraling, into a terminal decline. What triggered these sudden collapses?

Most of these societies suddenly lost it all -and are non-existent or a shell of their peak form. Toynbee’s study of history led him to categorize world history into 26 civilizations. Other historians want to expand this list to about 40-50. Excepting India, with 4000-6000 years of culture, not one of these 40-50 cultures, bar none, has or had a continuous historical structure for more than 500-2000 years.

Questions – And More Questions

What is it that makes India different? What gives India such resilience?

If India was indeed so accomplished, how come there are no Indian equivalents to the pyramids or a coliseum? Why did India never build a Great Wall? Where is the Indian Parthenon? Why are there no great palace complexes? How is it that that there are no Indic mausoleums? Where is India’s Forbidden City?

How is it that after conquering nearly 80% of the landmass, the ‘Desert Bloc’ has less than 50% of the world’s (an ageing, declining) population? How is it that Indic cultures, has been prosperous without loot and conquest – unlike the ‘desert bloc.’? If Indic systems have such resilience, how come large parts of the Indian region have been ruled by invading armies? Why have Indic rulers been unable to beat back these invaders?

The One Difference

Slavery.

In a word. India has no indigenous practice or record of slavery for the last 3000 years. Indic rulers liberalized slave laws societies where slavery was an inherited social condition – like the Hittites and Mittanis. All societies which are extinct or in terminal decline, ‘consumed’ significant slave labour.

Asimov's The Foundation Series

Asimov’s The Foundation Series

Historical Cycles

Popular theories posit (without clinching empirical evidence) that historical waves and cycles are responsible for these cultural extinctions. This does not explain non-recurrence of past glories of Greece, Rome, Egypt, Spain, Portugal – though Roman geography did see a brief and unrelated in achievement during the Pre-renaissance period. The popular press, spread these theories by the use of Science Fiction. For instance, The Foundation Series by Issac Asimov.

But…

The one exception to these cultural extinctions is India. From the Hittites, the Mittanis and the Elamites, Indic civilization has seen uninterrupted and continuous history. With cultural roots going back (at least) 6000-4500 years, it is the oldest, continously, living civilization.

Kuch to baat hai-ke hasti mit-ti nahi hamari.

Many Versions

The herald of Western doom, Oswald Spengler, had a popular theory of birth-life-death of civilizations. Spengler’s Theory of Civilizations, spelt out by an expert, states “Cultures are in reality super life-forms, that is, they are organic in nature, and like all organisms must pass through the phases of birth-life-death”. Other experts on Spengler’s Theory have defined these stages as growth, breakdown and disintegration. India has grown for the last 4000 years – and has defied Spengler’s popular explanation.

Toynbee in his 395-page, book, A Study of History, avoids the issue by terming the slavery issue as a problem of the internal and the external proletariat. The subject of slave and slavery appears only on 17 pages – in the 395 pages.

On slavery, he mentions that slavery,

“was one ancient institution, no less evil than war, which the Western civilization had got rid of. A society which had succeeded in abolishing slavery might surely take heart from this unprecedented victory of a Christian ideal.” He maunders on by saying “In the hearts of the dominant White majority a Christian conscience … had insisted on abolishing Negro slavery” (ellipsis mine).

Does Toynbee even mention how the Council of Gangra onwards, the White, Christian Church had supported and encouraged slavery. Not once! When Mani, the Buddhist teacher, called for overthrow of slavery, the Vatican at the Council of Gangra, re-affirmed its faith in slavery. The administrators of the teachings of the “Lord of lords, and King of kings.” (Revelation 17: 14) at the Council Of Gangra, 325 AD, issued edicts approving slavery. Historically, abolition of Negro slavery had little to do with Christian ideal and conscience – but due to numerous revolts and uprisings by slaves.

A recent book, The Life Cycle of Civilizations By Stephen Blaha, attempts to develop a mathematical theory of civilizations based on variables that describe a civilization.” Stephen Blaha further proclaims,”mankind appears to be in the process of developing a world civilization based on Western technology”.

And how many times, does the esteemed Stephen Blaha talk about slave and slavery?

Not once. But he does mention, colony and colonies 6 times in his 250-page book. It is this reluctance to accept history – and change that is required, which is behind the rise and fall of the Desert Bloc empires.

The problem is not just Western historians. Experts on India like By Georg Feuerstein, Subhash Kak, David Frawley, while writing about India, in their book, In Search of the Cradle of Civilization: New Light on Ancient India, refer to slavery just once and slave once. Their understanding of something as fundamental as the word dasa itself is wrong. They make no difference between a servant and slave.

The Seven Wonders Of The Ancient World were all monuments concentrated in the Desert Bloc geography.

The Seven Wonders Of The Ancient World were all monuments concentrated in the Desert Bloc geography.

Missing Monuments

The Pyramids, The Coliseum, The Great Wall, were all monuments that were raised by slave societies. To impress the slave population? India has no such monuments because India had no slave populations to build such showpieces – and no slaves to impress.

Mahabharata has interesting insight on man-nature conflict. The Pandavas, having secured a favorable award from Dhritarashtra, in their inheritance dispute, decided to set up a new capital. The divine architect Maya was retained to build this city. The site chosen for the new capital city – a forest, Khandava.

Overcome by their hubris, the Pandavas, burnt down the entire forest - and the animals inhabiting the forest. In place of the forest came up the gleaming new city of Indraprastha.

All the kings were called to marvel at the new city. And in her pride, Draupadi mocked at Duryodhana – a guest. To avenge this mockery, Duryodhana challenged Yudhithira for a game of chess (instead of a war) – which Yudhishthira promptly lost. They lost their new city – and were sent into exile by Duryodhana. Lessons duly learnt, the Pandavas after the completion of their exile, asked for five villages. After winning the War Of Mahabharat, they ruled from the ancient capital of Hastinapur. No more gleaming cities for them.

Invasions And Conquests

Karl Marx had a poor view about India – a ‘civilization of losers’.

Hindostan is an Italy of Asiatic dimensions, the Himalayas for the Alps, the Plains of Bengal for the Plains of Lombardy, the Deccan for the Apennines, and the Isle of Ceylon for the Island of Sicily. The same rich variety in the products of the soil, and the same dismemberment in the political configuration. Just as Italy has, from time to time, been compressed by the conqueror’s sword into different national masses, so do we find Hindostan, when not under the pressure of the Mohammedan, or the Mogul, or the Briton, dissolved into as many independent and conflicting States as it numbered towns, or even villages. (Karl Marx on The British Rule in India in the New-York Herald Tribune – June 25, 1853)

Max Mueller went ahead and built on Marx’s foundation. Brigadier General Sir Mortimer, urgently despatched from Italy, at the height of the WW2, distorted Indian history in the dying days of the Raj. And recently, VS Naipaul thought that India was a wounded civilization in perpetual retreat.

Factually speaking, Indic rule stretched from Greek borders (Hittites) to Taklamakan desert (Auriel Stern and Huien Tsang), from Central Asia (Elamites) to Bali. Thus Indic frontiers encircled a huge expanse. Some of the biggest victories in history of warfare were won by Indian armies. Thus, any assertion, that Indians are historic losers is a losing idea.

Income Disequilibrium

Production controllers prefer ‘free’ slave labour, compared to wage labour. Slave labour drives down wage levels and drives up unemployment. Food stamps are a consequence. Resultant discontent creates demand for unemployment benefits and a welfare state. Wastrel population is diverted with entertainment – Roman Circus. Wars are initiated, by a ‘disconnected’ army to capture new slaves, and increase the looted hoards – Julius Caesar and George Bush in Iraq.

Innovation & Invention

With disguised unemployment on one side and concentrated wealth derived from ‘free’ labor on the other, slave societies saw a culture of patrons, state support and subsidies for religion, arts, technology and science. Thus for short periods, members of the dominant segment, did (and do) produce significant intellectual output. In many cases, these ‘cultural achievements’ are simple cases of cultural expropriation.

Population Growth

At the core of the Indic social and political organization is the value of humans. This is evidenced by the value for babies (balagopal), feminine divinity (In India, the two most ‘important’ festivals, Diwali and Dasara are dedicated to women goddesses). Stable marriage systems, based on equity (instead of advantage) and contribution (instead of extraction) are a big part of the population growth.

The NRI Rush

It was amusing to see His Excellency Lord Baron Meghnad Desai (OBE, KBE) suddenly counting himself as one of the 1.1 billion Great Unwashed Indian Population! How much more can he come down? Never to see anything good happening in India, he suddenly counts himself as an Indian.

His drivel about India is irrelevant. But, His Lordship’s prognosis for the West is even more interesting. It is His Lordship’s belief that possibly only the USA (from the West) will make the cut. The Euro-Zone, His Excellency implies, will be irrelevant. How and Why is Lord Desai silent about the role of Euro-politicians in the decline and eclipse (His Lordship’s pessimism, mind you) of Euro-Zone. Is it that His Lordship does not dare criticize Western politicians? Or is it that the West can do no wrong? Surely, Your Lordship, does not believe that the Rise of India and the Eclipse of the West is Black Magic!

Indian Prosperity

Westernized Indians, unsure about going through the grind of re-building a nation, escaped to the West. And still do. A NRI newspaper desk-editor recently wrote,

It’s been two years since my family and I moved to India, a time span that happened to be the deadline to at least decide if our future lies here or there. (note the opportunism here) … this past summer, my husband and I would stay up late and discuss, debate, even argue. India had been great for his career, he would say. He felt creative and reinvigorated … “But I am tired,” I said. “It’s not just working at a start-up. It’s running the household, the uncertainty of water coming out of the tap, the driver showing up. And I cannot have one more parent-teacher meeting about my moral opposition to colouring in the lines. The school thinks I am crazy.” (note the desire for ready-to-eat solutions, the closed mind). Underlined comments mine.

Nations do not get built that way. The poorer country cousin of the Westernized NRI, is the desi-NRI. The desi-NRI, went out to make some money in sundry parts of the world (especially the Middle East). The desi-NRI worked hard – and never gave up on India. It is the remittances from the desi-NRI that have been bridging India’s current account deficit. For all this, the desi-NRI, the poorer brother, has never got the respect for his contributions – and the Westernized NRI is lionized.

The desi-NRI, can’t speak English, you see.

Historically, India’s gold reserves (the largest in the world) of 25,000-30,000 tons, were not built on luck (no gold discoveries) or due to loot (no looting raids or slavery). A only one of its kind, capital accumulation in the world.

Democracy In India

It is these essential values of human equity that makes democracy a success in India. It is this ability to see all creation as one वसुधैव कुटुम्बकं ‘vasudhaivah kutumbakam’ that make the Republican India successful.

It is these values that gives India one of the lowest prison populations in the world – and practically very few positions in the Forbes ‘Most Wanted’ List.

Modern Indian Response To Slavery

A sher by Allama Iqbal is a familiar and modern response to slavery in the Indian context. Allana Iqbal wrote on Mahmud of Ghazni and his ‘favorite’ slave, Ayaz thus -

एक ही सफ में खड़े, महमूद अयाज़,

कोई बंदा रहा, कोई बंदा नवाज़ –

(Translation –  In a single line, stand Mahmud and Ayaz, as equals they stand, neither a master, none a slave - translation mine).

Poor Iqbal! He was taken in! Did they ever tell Iqbal how a number of his Kashmiri brothers (and sisters, too) were taken by the same Mahmud of Ghazni as slaves. The Central Asian region from the 10th century to the 17th century, imported Indian slaves – and exported horses.

Sahir Ludhianvi, better captures the Indian attitude to slavery, pomp and grandiose designs.

ताज तेरे लीए एक मजहर--उल्फत ही सही, तुझको इस वादी--रंगीन से अकीदत ही सही

मेरे महबूब कहीं और मीला कर मुझसे, बज्म--शाही में गरीबों का गुज़र क्या माने?

सब्त जीस राह पे हो सतावत--शाही के नीशान, उस पे उल्फत भरी रूहों का सफर क्या माने?

मेरे महबूब पास--परदा--ताश हीर--वफ़ा, तूने सतावत के निशानों को तो देखा होता

मुर्दा शाहों के मकाबिर से बहलने वाली, अपने तारीक मकानों को तो देखा होता

अन-गिनत लोगों ने दुनिया में मोहब्बत की हैं, कौन कहता है के सादिक थे जज्बे उनके

लेकिन उनके लीए ताश हीर का समान नहीं, क्योंकि वोह लोग भी अपनी ही तरह मुफ्लीस थे

यह ईमारत--मकाबिर यह फसीले यह हिसार, मुतल-कुल-हुक्म शाहेंशाहों की अजमत के सुतून

दामन--दहर पे उस रंग की गुलकारी है, जिसमे शामिल है तेरे और मेरे अजदाद का खून

मेरे महबूब! उन्हें भी तो मोहब्बत होगी, जीनकी सन्नी ने बक्शी है इसे शक्ल--जमील

उनके प्यारों के मकाबिर रहे बे-नाम--नमूद, आज तक उन पे जलाई किसी ने कंदील

यह चमनज़ार, यह जमना का किनारा, यह महल, यह मुनाक्काश डर--दीवार, यह मेहराब, यह ताक

एक शहेंशाह ने दौलत का सहारा लेकर, हम गरीबों के मोहब्बत का उदय है मजाक

मेरे महबूब कहीं और मिला कर मुझसे.

- Abdul Hayee ‘Sahir’ Ludhianvi.

Translation by gyanputra

Even if the Taj for you is a symbol of great love, even though you prefer its pretty colorful setting
My dear, meet me somewhere else, what truck can the poor have with kingly courts?
The paths on which are seared the grandest Royal Arms, how can love-filled hearts journey on them?
My dear, behind the veil of this advertisement of love, had you seen the trappings of royal power and wealth
Instead of being beguiled by the tombs of dead kings, had you seen our dark homes
Uncounted peoples in this world have loved, who says their love was not true
But they did not have the means for advertising love, they were poor like us
This mausoleum, these decorations, these fort parapets, that the arrogance of kings considers symbols of Greatness
On the face of the world this is a decoration of floral vines, that has flowing in it your ancestors’ blood, and mine
My dear! they must have had loves too, those whose art granted this monument its acclaimed form
But those loves’ tombs are unnamed, untraced, no one has ever lit on them even a candle
This garden, this Jamna riverbank, this palace, these picturesque walls and doors, these pulpits, these arabesques
A king of kings aided by all his wealth, has mocked the love of us poor
My dear, meet me somewhere else.

Where Do We Go From Here

The world has looked to India for answers. But modern India looks to the West. And those Western answers are irrelevant and don’t work – or sometimes a trail of red herrings.

Post Script

10 days after this post, Arvind Panagariya, a professor from Columbia University and a Senior Fellow at the Brookings Institute, wrote how “the emerging giant can accomplish something the diminishing giant couldn’t!.” While the professor admits to the reality of the ‘diminishing giant’, sadly, he equates a giant of brute force with a moral one. This seems to be very similar to Manmohan Singh’s one-point agenda to ‘to sit at the high table, in the global comity of nations.’ Both, Manmohan Singh and Arvind Panagariya seem to be infected with this strain of imported virus. The main symptom of this infection is this overwhelming desire for Western approval.

Desert Bloc Legacy – ‘Westernization’ & ‘Jihad’

Posted in Current Affairs, Desert Bloc by Anuraag Sanghi on July 25, 2008
The West and Islam

The West and Islam

The Three Problems Of The Modern World

The world today is divided between those who see Westernization as a problem – and those who see Islam as the threat. Islam also sees Zionism as the other major problem.

To my mind these are two sides of the same coin. Nobody sees Buddhism or Hindusim as the same threat as Westernization or Islam. The 3 desert religions account for only half the world – yet seem to account for a greater proportion of modern problems than the number of people following the ‘Desert Bloc’ culture.

Ignoring The Elephant In The Room

Ignoring The Elephant In The Room

Two Elephants In The Room

Most analysis fail to detect (or is it mislead) the role of slavery and colonies – the twin-elephants in the room. For instance, this nearly 20-page analysis about Westernization and Modernization, mentions slave once and colonialism (related words included) twice. The very basis of post-medieval West has been slavery and colonialism. Western propaganda has made slavery, an invisible factor in their ‘success.’

And they are on the half way mark, on the erasure in popular memory, about the use of colonies for Western enrichment. For instance, a ‘respected’ commentator, Kishore Mahbubani, fatuously, talks about the seven pillars of Western success – without once mentioning slavery and colonialism.

On the other hand, there are those who allege, that Westernization has progressed the world. Take Theodore Von Laue’s essay (author of The World Revolution Of Westernization) which is inspired “by a humane and compassionate vision which most academic studies lack. Indeed, his study was motivated by his concern about contemporary sectarian strife, interstate conflicts, ecological disasters, superpower rivalry, and anti Western movements mired in nostalgia and resentment”.

Slavery, Gold and Loot

It is the support of slavery and loot by the ‘Desert Bloc’ that is the root of the problem. For loot and slavery to ‘flourish’, looters and enslavers must share ‘common’ factors – like physical look, same religion, same or similar language, geography, etc. Hence, the importance of ‘assimilation’.

Respect For The Individual

While the West talks about the respect for the individual, facts are otherwise.

Members of the Catholic Church note with anxiety (and so does the its replacement, The State) that “the continued insistence that Hispanics will soon pass through the assimilationist melting pot and be American like us is not only false, but also harmful for our Hispanic sisters and brothers, and thus for the church”.

Another study to measure ‘assimilation’ notes “Mexican immigrants are assimilating more slowly than Italian immigrants did at the turn of the last century”. Similarly, expatriate populations in the Middle East have to live with disrespect and intolerance of non-Islamic religions.

Unlike the Indian social system, where differences are respected and encouraged, the position of the French Government, paraphrases the thinking of the ‘desert bloc’. The French expectation that “immigrants were supposed to blend harmoniously into society and not exist in separate communities” makes Westernization and Islamic Fundamentalism a problem for the rest of the world.

Across The World

From China, Li Changchun, a high chief in the Chinese Communist Party ideologue “has been sounding the alarm against alleged “Westernization and splittism” attempts by capitalistic demons. At a symposium to study the theories of Deng Xiaoping, the deceased paramount CCP leader, he called upon all communist comrades to strengthen the Marxist convictions, “Guard against foreign hostile machinations to Westernize and split China

In Russia, “The West, the Western Europe, and the United States have been perceived to represent wrong and dangerous forces and values, a danger and threat to Russia, Russian people its religion, values and politics, and good life in general”. (from the book The Enemy with a Thousand Faces: The Tradition of the Other in Western Political and History By Vilho Harle).

Desert Twins - Westernization and Jihad

Desert Twins - Westernization and Jihad

A report from Russia informs Metropolitan Kirill of Smolensk and Kaliningrad, who oversees external relations for the Russian Orthodox Church, in a nationally televised sermon in 2005, said the reformers of the 1990s did not understand “that reform does not mean Westernization.”

In Pakistan, people feel that “In the name of development, a huge amount of Westernisation will take place, leading to the erosion of Islamic values and coming into existence of a new class of citizens”.

From Africa, The Cape Times, confirms that “African traditons have been corrupted over many years by the influence of Western values, with its emphasis on materialism. The corruption is particularly marked in the urban areas of South Africa, where there has also been a breakdown of the family as the vehicle of traditional values.Mike Muendane, author of I am an African, said the corruption of African culture started a very long time ago. “We were told our cultures were inferior to Western cultures and we made the mistake of accepting that,” he said. With the Western cultures came the spirit of materialism and Africans lost their spirituality in the process.He said African children were being subjected to Westernisation. “We must claim back our children,” Muendane said”.

Researchers fear for languages using the same “standards applied to bird and mammal populations, professor Bill Sutherland of the University of East Anglia in England examined the threat to the world’s 6,800 languages. His findings – nearly 1,700 languages are either endangered, critically endangered or vulnerable – reported in the May 15 edition of the science journal, Nature. About 27 percent of the world’s languages are threatened, compared to about 9 percent of the bird population, his study shows. The foundation attributes the decline and total disappearance of some languages to urbanization, Westernization and the growth of global communications, which “diminish the self-sufficiency of small and traditional communities.”

South East Asian countries fear for their music and many “fear that Westernization and commercialization gradually tend to undermine cultural diversity in popular music, a reflection of the real changes and processes occurring in most societies over the past several decades”.

West & Islam - Again

West & Islam - Again

On The Other Side

The Cato Institute, a US think tank, announces that indeed, “a new specter is haunting America, one that some Americans consider more sinister than Marxism-Leninism,” according to Douglas E. Streusand. “That specter is Islam.” The rise of political Islam in North Africa, especially the recent electoral strength of anti-liberal Islamic fundamentalist groups in Algeria; the birth of several independent Moslem republics in Central Asia whose political orientation is unclear; and the regional and international ties fostered by Islamic governments in Iran and Sudan are all producing, as Washington Post columnist Jim Hoagland put it, an “urge to identify Islam as an inherently anti-democratic force that is America’s new global enemy now that the Cold War is over.”

Former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger feels, today it is “radical Islam that threatens the already brittle state structure via a fundamentalist interpretation of the Koran as the basis of a universal political organization. Jihadist Islam rejects national sovereignty based on secular state models; it seeks to extend its reach to wherever significant populations profess the Muslim faith”.

In another report, Kissinger calls for a concurrent US-Russia policy for “countering Islamic Fundamentalism the united states and russia have a common interest in countering islamic fundamentalism and should attempt to pursue concurrent policies, former secretary of state henry kissinger has said. “the challenge of islamic fundamentalism is probably the dominant russian concern. russia’s leaders perceive afghanistan’s taliban and to a lesser extent iran and pakistan as threats to the newly independent states of uzbekistan, azerbaijan, kazakhstan, tajikistan and turkmenistan, formerly soviet republics, kissinger said. “furthermore, moscow fears that militant ideologies could stimulate irredentism in russia’s southern muslim provinces,” kissinger wrote in an article in the washington post . he said america had its own “concerns about the spread of fundamentalism towards saudi arabia, pakistan and the middle east.” “an effort should be made,” kissinger suggested in the article, “to achieve concurrent or at least compatible policies with russia on the middle east, including central asia, afghanistan, iran and, at least as far as russia is concerned, the balkans.” he, however, said there were clear limits beyond which neither country may be able to go. america cannot, in the name of opposition to islamic fundamentalism, acquiesce to russia’s methods for suppressing the upheavals in chechnya. nor can it be indifferent should islamic fundamentalism become a pretext to force the newly independent states of central asia buckle under russian strategic domination, he said” (sic).

On Islam in Russia, The New York Times (in 2001) reported the ‘rise in Islamic fundamentalism has concerned Russian officials, many of whom are wary of any religion that is not Russian Orthodoxy. The ongoing battle in Chechnya, whose rebels increasingly identify with Muslim extremists, has fueled anti-Islamic attitudes. Much of the concern has focused on the influence, in Chechnya and beyond, of money and ideology from Islamic countries”.

Both sides use civilians as human shields. In Iraq an estimated 1 million civilian deaths. In Palestine and Israel, another million. (Cartoon source and courtesy - autonomoussource.com). Click for larger image.

Both sides use civilians as human shields. In Iraq an estimated 1 million civilian deaths. In Palestine and Israel, another million. (Cartoon source and courtesy - autonomoussource.com). Click for larger image.

In Europe, Islamic fundamentalism is being dealt with differently the “French consensus was symbolised by the 80 per cent public support for the head-scarf ban, which started with little trouble in September. While many Muslims felt stigmatised, the Government took comfort from the approval of the ban … The left wing, which long shunned criticism of Islam as the stock-in-trade of Jean-Marie le Pen, the far-Right leader, now denounces the “totalitarian”, anti-feminist, antisemitic doctrines of the fundamentalists. Jacques Julliard, a leading left-wing commentator, said the Left’s longstanding tolerance had been used as “an agent for the penetration of Islamic intolerance” … The debate … now acknowledges failure of its (France) “republican” approach to integration whereby immigrants were supposed to blend harmoniously into society and not exist in separate communities” (ellipsis and bold letters mine).

Across South East Asia, it is reported “on 18 January 2007, the Philippines military killed 9 members of the Abu Sayyaf terrorist group after a fierce gun fight. This came two days after the Philippines elite Army Special Forces killed Jaenal Antel Sali, one of the top five Abu Sayyaf leaders wanted by the United States for a series of high-profile terrorist acts. Earlier in January, Army Scout Ranger soldiers killed BinangSali, head of the Abu Sayyaf- Urban Terrorist Group. Elsewhere, Indonesia has also stepped up anti-terror actions in Poso in Sulawesi, a place where militants have gained a foothold. The anti-terror squad raided a militant stronghold killing 9 suspected militants in a gun-battle and arresting 18 suspects. A large haul of bombs and weapons were also found in the hideout and seized”.

From North Africa, come reports about how ”The Governments keep close watch on all radical fundamentalists,” the diplomat said. ”The authorities first try and influence and control by providing money to the mosques and getting the leaders on their side. If that doesn’t work, they crack down.”

The Demonization Of Islam

The complaint of “Westoxication” is a powerful expression by the non- West of its ambivalence towards modernity, and the urgent need to build a long-term separation of Westernization from modernization. The reshaping of the West as transcendental evil — “the West as Satanic Empire”

One Western, (of course), commentary states that Islamic Fundamentalism has “coincided with the demise of the colonial era, the retreat from empire, the liberation and independence of a host of former colonial states, the emergence of a world system centred on the United Nations, and more recently, the end of the cold war and the disappearance of the bipolar world of East and West”.

Of course, the writer seems to imply, (in the neo-con manner) that if the world had continued with colonies, and if 80% of the world was forced to be backward, these problems would not have occurred. This seems to be the logical corollary to this observation. Also, this commentary, does not recognize how the retreat from the empire left previously peaceful populations at each others throats. For instance, India and Pakistan, the entire Middle East, the fragile disequilibrium in Africa.

Thus, the world needs to understand that the root of the problem and also the solution is movement away from the civilizational values of the Deseret Bloc – based on slavery and loot.

Church Reformation & European Renaisance – The Truth

Posted in European History, Feminist Issues, History, Religion, Uncategorized by Anuraag Sanghi on July 20, 2008

500 years after the oppressive yoke of the Church was lightened, the BFAG Group of countries (Britain, France, America and Germany) arrogate all credit to themselves. Truth be told, the story is something else altogether.

Where does the story start?

Estranged relations between Rome and Constantinople, for many years, lead to the Schism of the 1054. Thereafter, the Roman Church lost all its Eastern mellowness and acquired dimensions of power, wealth, authority, persecution and bloodshed. 50 years later Rome started on its first of the many Crusades.

Arnaldo da Brescia
Arnaldo da Brescia

Arnaldo da Brescia

100 years after the Schism, Arnaldo da Brescia (in English, Arnold of Brescia), an Italian monk, and disciple of Pierre Abelard was the first to challenege the might of the Roman Church. After a few years of criticism of the ways of the Church (possibly from 1135), his first brush with Church authority came in 1139.

After the Second Lateran Council in 1139, he was forced into exile. He roamed from place to place – Zug (Switzerland), Paris, Zurich, Bavaria – and was finally allowed to return to Italy in 1143. On his return, he found a Rome in ferment. Romans found the yoke of Church very heavy and set up a Republican Commune, under the political leadership of Giordano Pierleoni, from a wealthy Jewish family.

The Republican Commune was short lived – and the Church soon regained its authority. For this, he was denounced as the “father of political heresies”. In what was to become a familiar routine, he was burned alive in 1156, and his ashes thrown into the Tiber.

The Roman Church, with the firm backing of the Roman Empire and subsequent rulers like Charlemagne, had become the most powerful authority in Europe. Arnaldo da Brescia’s opposition to Church involvement in European politics and the preoccupation of the Church in accumulation of wealth endeared him to no one.

Albiginsian Heresy (1209-1255)

“Novit enim Dominus qui sunt eius” instructed the Abbot of Citeaux to his followers. In English that means ” Kill them all, God will know his own.” And 200,000 people were killed.

Who were these people?

Cathars of Langudoc were Christians from Southern France (South of Loire Valley). They spoke the language of Oc, hence Languedoc – whereas Northern France langue d’oil spoke French.

They believed that there was evil in this world and Satan was doing his best to tempt people. Thus, they lived ascetic lives and did not marry (remember, the Bible says that women (Eve) was the cause of Original Sin and reason for downfall of Man (Adam) from the Garden of Eden). ‘Cathar’ is derived from the Greek work katharos (Pure). Cathar leaders were the parfaits (pure souls) and Cathar believers, called croyants, could have families.

Gypsy Inspired Music

Gypsy Inspired Music ?

Modern day Roma Gypsies made their first mark in Europe in Provence. The richness of the Roma Gypsy music (originally, from India) overwhelmed the people of Southern France. The Languedoc whole heartedly, assimilated the Gypsies (then famous as troubadours) and their culture – warmly. Centuries later, Verdi wrote the Il Trovatore, in 1853, a story about the clash between the White Christian Spain and a band of Gypsies. Georges Bizet’s, Carmen, another opera about the love of a Spaniard and the Gypsy, Carmen, used Gypsy music and themes considerably – apart from the story itself. In 1859, Franz Liszt wrote, The Gypsies And Their Music In Hungary, a 450-odd page treatise on Gypsy music – and his Hungarian Rhapsody was based on Gypsy music.

In the bleakness of Europe, the French poet Voltaire, the English WB Yeats, lamented and longed for Provence and the richness of the Provencal culture, 500 years later. Modern French cuisine, wine culture and tradition took root in this very area – and survived in spite of the best attempts by the Church to exterminate it.

How Many People Were Killed?

The xenophobic Church, allied with Northern France and wrote one of the bloodiest chapters in blood and loot. Over the next 41 years, a mercenary group, varying between 10,000-50,000, was raised. They were tempted with an Papal offer that they could take whatever they could lay their hands on. ‘Finders keepers’ was the rule that Roman Church established. The marauders wasted the entire population of Provence. Its culture wiped out. The Cathars were burnt at the stake, tortured, and killed in many different ways. More than 200,00o people were killed.

Peter Valdes and The Poor Men Of Lyons

A troubadour tale of the death of the holy man, Alexis, in 5th century, in Edessa, Mesopotamia inspired Peter Valdes (Peter Waldo in English), a rich merchant from Lyons, France. This story of Alexis, travelled to France, from the Syriac region, Greek and Byzantine route (Roma Gypsies again?).

Peter Valdes, in 1173, circa, gave away a part of his wealth to his wife. From the rest of his wealth, he compensated those he had dealt with unfairly in trade. He spent a part of his wealth on scholars to translate the Bible to common French. Initially, Pope Alexander III gave The Waldensians permission to preach – subject to local priestly permissions. With time, his group grew and are today referred to as the Waldensians and the “The Poor Men Of Lyons”.

As the followers of the Valdes increased, permissions dried up. The Waldensians were labeled as schismatics. In 1184, Pope Lucius III excommunicated the “Poor Men of Lyons”. Persecution followed.

After one incident, eighty Waldensians were burnt alive. The rest escaped to Bohemia-Moravia (modern Czechoslovakia, in Gypsy wagons?). Many Waldensians escaped to northern Italy to avoid persecution in France. In yet another incident, the “Piedmont Easter” (1655), French forces massacred 1,700 Waldensian men, women, and children.

Valdes used his new found knowledge of the Bible to counter the Roman Catholic Church. His followers rejected many aspects of Roman Catholicism – like the priesthood, indulgences, purgatory, and praying to saints. Later, Waldensians, became followers of Bohemian reformer Jan Hus (who was burned at the stake in 1415). In 1532, the Waldensians, under the guidance of William Farel, an associate of John Calvin, integrated with the Protestant faith.

Jan Hus (John Huss)

Jan Hus (John Huss)

Hussite Revolt – 1419-36

After the Albigensian crusades, the Church did not face any serious opposition. Britain, France, Germany quietly fell in line. But in the early 15th century, a courageous, new intellectual leader challenged Rome. And it started in Bohemia.

Bohemia, a small kingdom, (now a part of Czechoslavakia) discovered major silver deposits. The King Of Bohemia, Charles-I, invited Germans from nearby areas to expand trade and commerce. In 1419 King Wenceslas of Bohemia died. Emperor Sigismund, of Germany, a staunch Catholic of the Holy Roman Empire, inherited the Kingdom.

The first major successful revolt against the Church were the Hussite wars – a 100 years before the Martin Luther’s Ninety Five Theses (in 1517). Led by Jan Zizka. A small Czech Army, repeatedly defeated the Catholic Army from Germany. After 20 years of defeats, the Church was forced to negotiate. The trigger for this war was a University rector.

The Rector Of Prague

At the Charles University of Prague. The rector went by the name of Jan Hus. A supporter of Church Reform, he opposed many practices of the Roman Church. Hus was persuaded to attend the Council Of Konstanz (Constance) under the protection of the Emperor Sigismund. The Emperor refused to honour his promise of safe conduct and allowed Hus to be tried and then executed as a heretic. In 1415 John Hus was arrested and condemned to death by the members of the Council of Konstanz (Constance).

Bohemia was in uproar. Supporters of Hus made their displeasure plain. The protestors organised themselves , took the Chalice (Calyx) as their symbol and came to be known as Calyxtines. More than 500,000 died in the following unrest.

Jan Zizka

Jan Zizka

Jan Zizka

In 1420, a 60 year old man, blind in one eye took charge – and took on the might of the Roman Church and Roman Emperors.

Jan Zizka.

Over the next 12 months, he became completely blind. In the next 15 years, Zizka (and other Czech generals) defeated, many times, the combined armies of Germany, The Roman Church and others. His military strategy was studied for the next 500 years. Thereafter, the myth of military might of the Church was broken forever.

Jan Zizka allied himself with the Taborites (the radical Hussite wing). Zizka made Tábor in Bohemia into an armored and mobile fortress – the Wagenburgs. Sigismund tasted defeat at Visehrad (now a part of Prague) at the hands of Zizka (July, 1420) and the Taborite troops. Many anti-Hussite crusades were launched unsuccessfully against Zizka. One Catholic stronghold after another, fell. Zizka continued to command in person, though he had become totally blind in 1421.

In 1423 Zizka formed his own Hussite wing, while remaining in close alliance with the Taborites. In 1424, Zizka used his army, to lower tensions between the radical Taborites and the moderate Utraquists, whose stronghold was at Prague. He sent his armies to Prague to force the city to adhere to the anti-Rome /German policy. A negotiated armistice averted a civil war between the two Hussite factions. The outcome – a united attack on Moravia. The commander – Jan Zizka. On his death bed, Zizka, asked that his skin be used to make a drum that would lead his armies into battle.

Military success

Zizka ranks with the great military innovators of all time. Zizka’s army was made up of untrained peasants and burghers (townspeople). He did not have the time or resources to train these fighters in armament and tactics of the time. Instead they used weapons like iron-tipped pikes and flails, armored farm wagons, mounted with small, howitzer type cannons.

His armored wagons, led by the Taborites, in offensive movements, broke through the enemy lines, firing as they rolled, cutting superior forces into pieces. For defense, the wagons were arranged into a tight, impregnable barrier surrounding the foot soldiers – the Wagenburg (the wagon fort), as they came to be known. The wagons also served to transport his men. Zizka thus fully initiated modern tank warfare. Zizka’s experience under various commanders was useful. At the battle of Tannenberg (1410), Zizka fought on the Polish side , in which the famed German Teutonic Knights were defeated.

End Of The Inquisition

After the use of The Inquisition, at trial of Joan Of Arc (1431), Inquisitions became less credible and infrequent. The last Inquisition was the conviction of Savanorola. Jerome Savonarola – 1452-1498, lived in Florence, Italy. An outspoken critic of Papal authority and the immoral lifestyle of the clergy, he soon made enemies. The Roman Church offered him the position of a cardinal, which he refused. Finally, he was excommunicated, arrested and burnt to death.

Mythology as History

The principle of ‘Cuius regio, eius religio’ (meaning whose land, his religion; CRER) – the ruler decided his people’s religion, was used to settle Europe post-Hussite Wars and the ‘Reformation’, establishing the CRER principle to settle Germany, giving rise to the logic of ‘ubi unus dominus, ibi una sit religio’ (One ruler, one religion). Just in case someone had religious disagreement, the logic was they could well emigrate – (ius emigrandi). The target of these laws, principles and writings – the Jews and the Roma-Gypsies.

Jan Hus initiated the Vatican Church Reform and Jan Zizka broke the back of Papal authority – made possible by the alliance with the Taborites. The Czech successes, created room for the European ruling classes to confront the Vatican – for which they used the 95 Theses by Martin Luther (1517). Martin Luther’s Protestantism was less about religious reform and rabidly anti-Semitic and anti-Gypsy. His ‘acceptance’ by the European authorities, was based on his pandering to the political objectives of the European ruling houses against the Vatican. Espousing the Antisemitism and ‘anti-Gypsy cause’, Martin Luther earned his spurs from the kings and the Vatican, when he wrote in

1543 that Jews be placed ‘in a stable like the Zigeuner [Gypsies] so that they learn that they are not masters in our land’ (from Borders and travellers in early modern Europe By Thomas Betteridge, page 97)

The British break (1533-34) with the Holy Roman Church happened due to favors by the Papal office to the Iberian Empires – in matters of trade and colonial expansion, and the impediments to divorce of Henry-VIII at the behest of the Spanish rulers.

Today, the Germans and the British are loath to be reminded about the Czech Church Reform initiatives and the defeats at the hands of the Poles and Czechs. Western historiography about the Enlightenment and Renaissance, in Britain, France and Germany, leading to the reformation is ‘mythology as history’.

Of course, the role of the Greek Orthodox Church, the Byzantine Empire in the entire Czech saga is also worth re-examining. Were the Hussite Wars, a proxy war waged by the Eastern Church against the Vatican?

Cultural Dacoity

Posted in Business, Current Affairs, European History, Feminist Issues, History, language, Media, Uncategorized by Anuraag Sanghi on July 9, 2008
The Dendera Zodiac

The Dendera Zodiac

Cultural Loot

Between 1850-1900, Western archaeologists dug up more than 400,000 clay tablets in West Asia. This loot was carried back to the British Museum, Louvre France, Imperial Museum in Berlin, University Of Pennsylvania. Latter day digs and finds were retained in Iraq, Turkey and Egypt. In the last 100 years, of the more than 400,000 clay tablets excavated, less than a 70,000 have been deciphered between the four institutions. Less than one fifth have been published so far.

The vandalism of Napoleonic army in Egypt and the pilferage of cultural artifacts has been well documented. The Rosetta Stone, the Dendera Zodiac, Cleopatra’s Needle were among the booty from Egypt that the disastrous campaign of Napoleon yielded. Edward Said described the Anglo-French loot from Egypt, as “that great collective appropriation of one culture by another”

Extreme competitive behaviour in business, economic activity, trade, colonization, did not stop Germany (repository of the Akhmim Kodex) and Britain (Bruce Codex and Askew Codex) to collude with the Vatican in keeping the Pistis Sophia (which reveals the deep Indic /Buddhist influence) from reaching the public domain. It took the Nag Hammadi and the Dead Sea Scrolls to blow this entire ‘conspiracy of silence’ apart.

Usurping Aryan Achievements

While Britain and the France, for colonial reasons, were ‘discovering’ the Greek miracle, Germany and the USA started ‘discovering the ‘Aryan’ roots’ to Western civilization. Martin Bernal, the author of ‘Black Athena”trilogy ascribes Western “amnesia” towards Europe’s “Ancient Model” of historiography with the “Aryan” model.

Simply speaking, the West replaced Egypt as the source of culture with the Aryans. Fact is, neither the cultural achievements of Egypt (from Africa) nor of the Aryan (from India) are for the West to arrogate to themselves.

A writer on this phase of history, Susan Marchand says,

“The Aryan industry, of course, burgeoned. Even the former Kaiser Wilhelm II, in exile, took up the study of the Orient … In a 1928 letter to his friend, the former emperor reported a recent conversation with Oswald Spengler in which Wilhelm had tried his best to convince the herald of Western doom that “we are orientals [Morgenländer], and not westerners [Abendländer].” (Bold letters, italics, ellipsis mine).

Pre Hitler Aryans

Pre-Hitler 'Aryans'

Pre-Hitler ‘Aryans’

Hitler was not the first (or even the last) to try to usurp Aryan legacy. Aryan history of languages, culture, spread of civilisation, its science and technology appealed to many in the West – and especially White Supremacists.

One hilarious example of this kind Charles Morris (writer of The Aryan Race: Its Origins And Its Achievements By Charles Morris.). If this book was not a best seller, as ‘history’, it would surely have been best seller as a comedy. Another book – based on the Aryan Invasion Theory, was Lectures of the Arya by Albert Pike.

A set of books written by L. Austine Waddell – again had a single point agenda of usurping Aryan achievements and culture. Wadell declared, “the Aryan Race — now chiefly represented in purest form in North-western Europe.”

The 1915 film, DW Griffith’s ‘Birth Of A Nation’ was another extension of these efforts. One of the first big hits from Hollywood, this film on the ‘Knights of the Ku Klux Klan’ enjoys cult status.

D.W. Griffith’s film The Birth of a Nation was based on a book by Thomas Dixon, Jr. titled The Clansman – An Historic Romance of the Ku Klux Klan (sic) – written in 1905. Dixon thought (from the book preface) that the rise of the Ku Klux Klan (KKK) was the “most dramatic chapters in the history of the Aryan race.” Later, this piece of racism was replaced by another phrase – “Carpetbaggers’ political folly” in the film.

In the climactic scene, these KKK knights ride to the rescue of the Whites from North and South, to the blaring sounds of Wagner’s `Ride of the Valkyries.’ Yes, the same music that was also, allegedly, Hitler’s favorite. The common enemy of the united ‘Aryan Whites’ is the African-American liberated slave soldier. The original screen title informs the viewer:

“The former enemies of North and South are united again in common defense of their Aryan birthright.”

Corporal Adolf Hitler, right, pictuerd with two other soldiers during his stay in a military hospital.  Photo - HULTON/ GETTY IMAGES. Photo Courtesy - telegraph.co.uk

Corporal Adolf Hitler, right, pictuerd with two other soldiers during his stay in a military hospital. Photo - HULTON/ GETTY IMAGES. Photo Courtesy - telegraph.co.uk

Remember, this was while Hitler was still a lowly corporal in the German army during WW1 – and the Nazi party was yet to get its milk teeth. As the memory of rampant ‘Aryanization’ in the US and Europe faded from popular memory, in 1998, the Vatican came out with an apology, for its collusion with Hitler’s regime. The Vatican of course, linked Hitler’s Holocaust due to ‘neo-pagan’ phase. Vatican’s description ‘neo-pagan’, is a short code for India and Hinduism.

Thomas Huxley in “The Aryan Question,” first published in the The Nineteenth century, Volume 28, 1890, page 766 (later also in Popular Science, etc.)

“There was, and is, an Aryan Race, that is to say, the characteristic modes of speech, termed Aryan, were developed among the Blond Longheads alone, however much some of them may have been modified by the importation of non‑Aryan elements.”

Richard Butler - White 'Aryan'After, WW2, it has become politically incorrect for any White to call themselves as Aryan – but that has not stopped White Supremacists. There are many White Supremacist gangs in the USA, that call themselves Aryan.

Behind the dacoity

Euro-zone has, mostly, covered itself with borrowed feathers. Euro-colonial powers, like Britain and France, traced their lineage to Egypt (Africa), Greece (The Mediterranean), Rome and pre-Renaissance Italy. Germany and the USA, undermined the Anglo-French colonial position, by creating the ‘Aryan Roots’ theory for the Western civilization.

The West, has been a leading player in the ‘cultural dacoity’ game – especially the four BFAG countries of Britain, France, and Germany and in modern times, America has joined this ‘cultural dacoity’. The four BFAG countries (Britain, France, America, Germany), are loath to credit anything to any other culture – even to their Iberian competitors. The interesting bit is the racial sub-text.

As per BFAG historiography, all Iberian achievements are due to the West African (Negroid, not Arabic) rule prior to the rise of the Iberian Empires. The Iberians could not achieve much as they are of ‘mixed blood.’ The thrust of this historiography, isJust imagine that – the Iberians learnt everything from the Africans”.

The Greek Miracle

Their own history being a barren cupboard, these BFAG countries raided other cultures. First, they sanitized the records of books that the Greeks borrowed from other cultures – and never returned. These ‘unreturned’ books were later ascribed to the Greeks.

A Balkan general, from an obscure part of Eastern Europe, Macedonia, was Hellenized. Alexander, became a Greek conqueror of the world. It would be similar to the Chinese claim to Genghis Khan’s Mongolian Empire.

Hipparchus Of Nicaea /Bithynia /Rhodes (in modern-day Iznik, Turkey) was another ancient (so-called) ‘Greek’, claimed as one of their own by modern West. Most of his work was based on the Chaldean systems from Babylon. Eudoxus of Cnidus (in Turkey), learnt astronomy in Egypt, and claimed by the West as a Greek and one of their own. Ptolemy was born, lived, learnt, worked and died at Alexandria in Egypt – claimed by the West as their very own, a Greek.

Thales of Miletus, the son of Examyes, was a Carian, the modern Turkish province of Mugla. Thales’ reputation in modern Euro-centric history rests on ‘his’ calculations which could predict the solar eclipse. The Carian language was related to Hittite language. And Caria itself was a border district between the Hittites and Greeks. Herodotus informs that rebellious Greeks in the Persian kingdoms were exiled to Indian borders – at Susa, Khuzestan (in modern Iran) and Bactria (modern Afghanistan). Among these exiles were citizens of Miletus, who were behind the Ionian revolt in 499 BC.

Manipulation in dates made the Pythagoras Theorem a Greek miracle!

Manipulation in dates made the Pythagoras Theorem a Greek miracle!

For instance, the Pythagoras theorem is not Greek and definitely not Pythagoras’. – attributed without evidence. Pythagoras was a native of Samos (off the coast of modern Turkey), bordering the Hittite Empire. And not Greece.

Fleeing from the tyranny of Policrates, at the age of some 18 years, he studied mathematics at Egypt for 22 years. From Egypt, Pythagoras went to Babylon – the intellectual free port of the ancient world. Then a part of the Elamite Empire – now in modern Iran. As a captive of Cambyses.

Voltaire famously remarked,“It is very important to note that some 2,500 years ago at the least Pythagoras went from Samos to the Ganges to learn geometry.” It was the common and received wisdom in Europe, Pythagoras was indeed more “indebted for his knowledge to the Brahmins, on the banks of the Ganges, than to the priests of Egypt.” Till 1857, when world history changed.

His inner circle of followers lived like Indian brahmacharyas in a mathematikoi (meaning “those who know”, from which the word mathematics comes; possibly related to the Indian मठ mutth); not allowed any personal possessions, wore their hair long, were vegetarians and observed strict rules of silence (मौन).

Imhotep, an African-Egyptian became Aesclepios. Ibn Sina became Avicenna. Abū Bakr Muhammad ibn Zakarīya Rāzi became Rhazes, Abul Qasim Khalaf ibn al-Abbas al-Zahravi became Albucasis. Abū ‘l-Walīd Muḥammad ibn Aḥmad ibn Rushd (Arabic: أبو الوليد محمد بن احمد بن رشد‎) the father of secular thought in Europe was Latinized and usurped as Avveroes. His commentaries and works on Aristotle introduced modern Europe to Aristotle. To muddy waters, the Indian mathematical and numeral system became the Arabic numeral system – which the Arabs themselves called Hindsa.

How did the Greeks themselves view the sources of their learning? Sarah Morris, in Daidalos and the Origins of Greek Art writes how,

the Greek attitude toward the Orient, where the admiration for vastly more ancient and learned cultures was mixed with prejudice inspired by political conditions.

All this so-called ‘Greek’ learning came from Babylon-to-Greek-to-Arabic-to-Latin/Greek manuscripts. Greeks, Romans, the Church – major destroyers of books and learning, became voracious dacoits in the recent past. Without as much as, By your say so. Roman usurpers (of the Balkan Empire) were glamorized to the point of becoming rock stars in the glam show of Anglo-French-German history.

Of course, we are not started on the Athenian encounter between the Indian yogi and Socrates, which was mentioned by Aristoxenus – and recalled by Eusebius. Or the Indo-Assyrian collaboration which is known as Babylonian astronomy – today.

A blip in history

The Roman Empire lasted all of 500 years – from the fall of Carthage and Corinth 146 BC till the invasion of Alaric, The Goth (410AD). Alexander’s campaign had taken the best of male youth from the Balkan and Mediterranean population and made it incapable of holding at the centre.

The vast dominions and revenues of the Assyrian Empire fell into Alexander’s went unprotected. The thin Greco-Macedonian political leadership were engaged with Alexander abroad. Its’ armies were tied up in Asia. No ruler after Alexander’s death in 323 BC was in a position to consolidate the hold over the Assyrian Empire that came their way. Or overcome Greek-Macedonian infighting. Eastern Europe, the Mediterranean and the Balkan (the roots of Alexander) geography took 500 years to recover their populations and youth to mount a challenge to the Roman usurpers.

This 500-year blip in human history, called the Roman Empire, could not hold onto the Assyrian-Macedonian Empire, they had usurped. The split of the Eastern Roman Empire from the Western Roman Empire happened on linguistic lines around 400 AD. Over the next 200-400 years, Greek language became the official language of the Byzantine Empire.

The Balkans, the Mediterranean and Eastern Europe followed the lead of the Byzantine Empire and used Greek extensively – at a cost to their own language. For the next 1000 years, the Byzantine Empire used Greek as the official language – and was ruled by some Greek rulers.

The ‘Greek Miracle’ was rewritten by these Greek historians – 800-to-1000 years later. Much like modern-day propaganda by the West, the Greeks used their language to create a myth around the Greek civilization. Alexander, a Macedonian (from modern-day Balkans), was usurped by the Greeks, from the Mediterranean region, as their own.

Hittite Empire

Hittite Empire

Old Mother Hubbard

By the 19th century, modern West became aware of Aryan achievements. Europe suddenly discovered their Aryan roots. European languages derived from Sanskrit became Indo-European (Indians should be grateful that at least these were called Indo-European – and that Indic languages were not charged with plagiarism).

Of course, it is a ‘historical fact’ that the whole of Europe is Aryan – and India is inhabited by alien ‘Aryan’ conquerors.

Rome‘s legacy!

From Rome we get a slave-owning, loot-oriented, blood-thirsty line of rulers. An empire that gave birth to 1500 years of Church persecution.

Emperor Constantine after his victory at Milvan bridge, extended State patronage to Christianity. For the next 1000 years Christianity was racked by challenges from Buddhism – most prominently, the Manichean Sect. After centuries of persecution and massacre, non-believers became extinct in most of Europe. The Church itself became very powerful – and a breeding ground for corruption and nepotism. Ripe for the reformation.

Iberian Colonization

1492. The (largely) benign rule of the West African Moors came to an end. White Christian rulers of Spain, Isabella and Ferdinand, set historic standards in persecution and extortion. More than a million Jews were killed, crucified, burnt alive; their properties confiscated and distributed.

Christopher Columbus In Bahamas

Christopher Columbus in the Bahamas

Christian Spain, fresh from their victory over West African (Muslim) rulers, (then called Moors), obtained the backing of the Church for expansion. The Church Of Rome, eager to add new followers, approved a Papal Bull. Spain and Portugal were given a duopoly on European exploration of new markets and believers in Christian religion.

The same year, Christopher Columbus set sail westwards to find a trade route to India. A few months later he landed at Bahamas – and reported the western trade route to India. The West realized (much later) that this was, for them, a new continent – now called America.

And modern colonialism was born. Out of Iberia – the Portuguese and the Spaniards. Loosed on an unsuspecting world by the Papal Bull. Spain and Portugal, the two then superpowers (until early nineteenth century), competed to get various Papal Bulls issued in their favour – often contradictory. Many negotiations and treaties later, the world was divided between Spain and Portugal. Spain and Portugal quickly expanded their empires and operations. The Papal Bull gave the two Iberian powers, a duopoly over ‘Christian’ conquest – but also hobbled them with a religious agenda. Hence, the pre-occupation by the Iberian colonizers to convert the ‘heathens’.

Reaction From Rest Of Europe

Was the exclusion of Britain, France and Germany from this Papal Bull, the reason for the support of Protestantism in these countries. Why did Henry VIII change – from a Defender Of The Faith, to revolt against the Church?

After the grant of duopoly to Spain and Portugal, by the Church Of Rome, England (France and Netherlands, too) declared open season against Spanish ships. With the sanction of the English State, high seas piracy became a national pastime in Britain. Pirates like Sir John Hawkins made money on slave trade and piracy. Queen Elizabeth, apart from knighting him, also participated in these criminal enterprises. Of course, further on, these pirates and privateers became heroes. In the best Anglo-Saxon propaganda tradition, books soon started a ‘white wash’ of slavery and piracy – like Mr.Midshipman Easy, by Captain Frederick Marryat (Retd. Royal Navy), in 1836.

After the break with Vatican, during the reign of Henry VIII, no longer tied by Papal injunctions and diktat, the English decided to challenge Spain. In 1600 The English East India Company (EEIC) was formed to spearhead English trade with India. By 1650, EEIC obtained the firmaan from Shah Jehan to operate in India – and compete with the Iberians.

Initially, in matters of religious conversions, the English copied the Spanish. The Chairman of the Directors of the East India Company, Ross Donnelly Mangles, piously declared in the British House Of Commons –

“Providence has entrusted the extensive empire of Hindustan to England, in order that the banner of Christ should wave triumphant from one end of India to the other. Everyone must exert all his strength that there may be no dilatoriness on any account in continuing in the country the grand work of making India Christian.”.

It took the Haiti Revolution to start the end of the Spanish Empire – and the 1857 War Of Independence in India to end the English campaign to ‘convert the heathen’ and ‘civilize the pagan Hindoos’. After the 1857 War Of Independence, the Colonial India Government printed leaflets in tens and thousands confirming the British policy had changed. One commentator noted, these leaflets informed the local Indian population that “that she (Queen Victoria) would not interfere with the religion of the native, or countenance any favoritism in matters of faith.” (bold letters mine)

The overwhelming, last impression of the British Raj, wrongly, was that in matters of faith, the British Colonial Government was neutral. Angus Maddison writes, in The Economic and Social Impact of Colonial Rule in India

“British imperialism was more pragmatic than that of other colonial powers. Its motivation was economic, not evangelical. There was none of the dedicated Christian fanaticism which the Portuguese and Spanish demonstrated in Latin America and less enthusiasm for cultural diffusion than the French (or the Americans) showed in their colonies. For this reason they westernized India only to a limited degree.”

Mr.Maddison, British pragmatism sprang from the fierceness of the 1857 War. It was the Indian backlash to cultural imperialism, that made British rulers change their policy. The implied enlightenment, modernism by Shri Maddison is entirely misplaced.

In fact, after 1857, racist, propaganda and cultural baggage came covertly – to gain better traction at home and in the colonies. For instance, Priya Joshi, a researcher shows that after 1857, book shipments from Britain to India increased by a factor of three.

The Collapse Of The Iberian Empire

For roughly 250 years, the Iberian Empires were the most powerful. The slave rebellion of Haiti triggered a collapse of the Spanish colonies in South America. Simon Bolivar, aided by the Haiti’s rulers, initiated de-colonization movements across South America – leading to the demise of Spanish Colonialism. The last nail in the Spanish colonial possessions was Cuba – which they lost after the Spanish-American War. After the loss of Cuba, Philippines and the American colonies, and the end of slavery, the Iberians imploded much like other slave societies.

Of course, Anglo-Saxons gloat over the collapse of the Iberians. And have waged a steady propaganda war to show the Iberian colonizer in poor light. The BFAGs give no credit for the Iberian contribution to Western culture. Spanish domination of European affairs belong to a ‘decadent imperial past’ – whereas the BFAG countries have created ‘modern’ world societies.

The rhetorical effacement of empire from the conceptual map of the historiography of eighteenth- and nineteenth-century Spanish literature cannot be explained by a weakening of imperial agendas; instead it speaks to the Hegelian “History” of modern Europe and exemplifies its erasure of imperialism from the story of the modern. Spain’s hegemonic moment is automatically coded as imperial, while the imperial powers of northern Europe are simply modern. (from Properties of Modernity By Michael P. Iarocci)

The interesting bit is the racial sub-text. As per BFAG historiography, all Iberian achievements are due to the West African (‘Black’) rule prior to the rise of the Iberian Empires. The Iberians could not achieve much as they are of ‘mixed blood.’ Just imagine that – the Iberians learnt everything from the ‘Black-Africans’ seems to be the thrust of this historiography.

Anglo-Saxon Trajectory

The Anglo-Saxon Empire was tracing the Iberian trajectory – with a 100 year interregnum. A hundred years after the collapse of the Spanish Colonial Empire, the British Empire started disintegrating – like its Iberian predecessors. Like the revolt in Haiti, colonial hagiography suggests, that possibly the Boer War, signaled the beginning of the end for the British Empire. It was, more probably, the Battle Of Islandhwana, which made Britain more repressive and more defensive.

British decline was also, for similar reasons. Loss of slaves and colonies. The rise (and implosion) of the French, English colonial possessions tracked the Iberian trajectory by a lag of a 100 years.

Gypsy Music Recordings

Roma Gypsy Music Recordings

Birth Of Western Music

The Roma-Gypsy contribution in the growth of Western musical tradition has been blanked out from Western history. The spread of Roma-Gypsy populations across Europe by the 16th century coincides with the birth of Western music systems – a stripped down version of the 3000-years old Indian music structure.

Hungarian music was Roma-Gypsy music arrogated by the White Christian majority to itself – and resented the Roma-Gypsy music culture. Western military music came from Roma-Gypsy music bands of Turkey, Austria and Hungary. Carefully hidden is Bela Bartok’s research into ‘folk’ music and ‘inspiration’, as is the source of Franz Liszt’s Hungarian Rhapsody – a by-product of Roma-Gypsy music. Before that, Verdi wrote the Il Trovatore, in 1853, a story about the clash between the White Christian Spain and a band of Roma-Gypsies. Georges Bizet’s, Carmen, another opera about the love of a Spaniard and the Roma-Gypsy, Carmen, used Roma-Gypsy music and themes considerably – apart from the story itself.

Gypsy Music - Inspired or Plagiarised?

Roma Gypsy Music - Inspired or Plagiarised?

After WW1, when parts of Hungary folded into the Austro-Hungarian Empire, Bartok’s access to his ‘inspiration’, the Gypsies (and their music) was also cut off, his music compositions also declined. In the true ‘cultural dacoity’ mode, Bartok (after emigrating to USA), covered his tracks and found ingenious ways to deny the Roma-Gypsy influence. Between Bela Bartok, Zoltan Kodaly and Leos Janacek, they recorded 6000 Roma-Gypsy tunes on wax cylinders. The wax cylinders on which Bartok, Zoltan Kodaly and Leos Janacek copied Roma-Gypsy music are now sought after items.

It is the dances of the Roma Gypsies behind the European cultural icon – the Flamenco! The rumba and the tango. It is the Gypsies (along with the Arabs) who brought Indian music systems to Europe – based on which the Western music system developed over the last 300-400 years. The iconic guitar is a modified Indian musical instrument – brought to Europe by the Gypsies, which the West tries ‘passing off’ as their own. Hittites, the Indo Aryans of the Middle East, before the Gypsies had an instrument similar to the guitar. Why am I not surprised when flamenco style, Roma-Gypsy music group, Los Del Rio’s Macarena became a big hit in India. This contribution to modern and classical Western music by the Roma-Gypsy remains unacknowledged – and the Western arrogation continues unmitigated.

The Gypsies In Provence

Modern day Roma Gypsies made their first mark in Europe in Provence. The richness of the Roma-Gypsy music (of India) overwhelmed the people of Southern France. They whole heartedly, assimilated the Gypsies (then known as troubadours) and their culture – warmly. 500 years later, across a bleak Europe, the French poet Voltaire, the English WB Yeats, lamented and longed for Provence and the richness of the Provencal culture. Modern French cuisine, wine culture and tradition took root in this very area – and survived in spite of the best attempts by the Church to exterminate it in the Albigensian Crusade.

African Contribution To Modern Technology

An interesting post on Racism & Technology by Michelle M. Wright in the Switch adds to this thesis. This post lists the large number of contributions made in modern times by Afr0-Americans – totally unacknowledged.

Consider a handful of the contributions that African-Americans have made to science and technology: we have forgotten that Granville Woods invented the steam boiler furnace, the telephone transmitter; Sarah Boone invented the ironing board; Mary Moore invented one of the first artificial pain relievers in the 18th century; Lewis Latimer invented the incandescent light bulb (greatly improving on Edison’s use of a bamboo filament by replacing it with carbon, and therefore making light bulbs last from a mere 30 hours to over 300), and he supervised the implementation of electric lights in New York City, Philadelphia, Montreal, and London; we have forgotten that Garrett A. Morgan invented the prototype of the gas mask and the automatic stoplight; Frederick Jones made the transportation of fresh foods and dairy products possible when he invented mobile refrigeration; Elijah McCoy made it possible for locomotives to operates continuously without having to stop every few miles to re-lubricate the wheels and machinery. Despite the attempts of corporate competitors to duplicate his invention, only McCoy’s actually worked, causing railway engineers to always ask if the automatic lubricator available for purchase was “the real McCoy”-this phrase has been re-attributed to several white McCoys: an athlete, an entrepreneur, and an inventor whose inventions were never actually used by anyone. The only black inventor America acknowledges is George Washington Carver who revolutionized Southern agriculture by developing crop rotation so that farmers did not exhaust their soil after three years but could use it endlessly (indeed, early crop rotation was taught by the first African-Americans to white planters). Carver also developed peanut oil as cheaper alternatives to motor oil, diesel fuel, printing ink, rubbers, and lighting oil…but he is only famous as the inventor of peanut butter. More recently, A. P. Ashbourne developed the airplane propeller; Dr. Charles Drew discovered plasma in blood; Henry Sampson patented the cell phone; Otis Boykin developed pace maker controls for the guided missile, and Dr. Patricia Bath has patented her technique of using laser surgery to remove cataracts. (from the Racism And Technology By Michelle M. Wright).

This systemic ‘amnesia’ in the West points to two things – a barren cultural cupboard and the plagiarist arrogation by the West of the achievements made by other cultures.

Selective Leaks

What is it these four institutions hiding? My feeling is that while these guys sit on these finds, they would have imploded – and their worst fears would have become reality. They would be another footnote in the history of slave owning civilizations that imploded. Hopefully Indic countries, based on humanity would have become an intellectually-dominant civilization again!

Tanti Bhil - A Famous Dacoit
Tantia Bhil – A Colonial Era Dacoit

Coming To Dacoity

Dacoity is a uniquely Indian-English word – made, formed and used in India. Dacoits were (and are) outlaws operating at the periphery of morality – and the law. These brigands were a response to the shrinking opportunity base due to colonial practices (some of which continue) in India. These dacoits typically did not target the State itself or the poor.

The target of the dacoits were the beneficiaries of the system – the rich. Since, the dacoits did not directly challenge the might of the State, the State was not very worried about these dacoits. But loot, these dacoits did. Especially the rich. Hence, the Indian population has viewed dacoits ambivalently.

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