What's new

‘Yoga and Christianity are absolutely incompatible’


Sep 20, 2014
‘Yoga and Christianity are absolutely incompatible’
A selection of readers' comments on recent articles.
Today· 04:30 pm
Total Views

Photo Credit:Yoga and Christianityare absolutely incompatible and antithetical in doctrine and practice ("In Mumbai, a Catholic priest-yogi attacks Western propaganda against yoga”). –Jessica Smith


I remember Father Joseph Pereira saying, “In my travels, people say to me, how is it that you are a priest and yet you practice yoga?” to which he replied, “Jesus was a yogi.” When he said that, I finally understood him.Ron


I have been participating in trans-spiritual practices for many years in my search for God. A lifelong Christian Catholic, I have been practicing Iyengar Yoga for over 30 years and have been a member of Self-Realization Fellowship since 1974. It seems to me that Jesus and Yogananda are in cahoots these days with respect to meeting the needs of devotees who know that the way goes in, not out. Yogananda is showing the means to a deeper communion with God through meditation, something which has been noticeably lacking in Christian circles.

I know that this is threatening to some, but they should not condemn something (yoga) they do not understand simply because they fear it. –JF Nadeau

Facts of the caseThanks for a nice on-the-field report to give us facts about thesadhvi rape case(“Heard of a sadhvi getting raped in Bengal? Here's the real story”). -Hari Kusumba

Not all IIT students get huge pay packagesThe sad truth is that not just theIITians, but all graduates given an opportunity want to fly abroad to enjoy the superior quality of life in developed countries ("Dear Smriti Irani, stop giving my money to IITians"). I had taken a conscious decision to work in my motherland. But after working for over 36 years in the steel industry, I realised that the quality of life in India is simply atrocious.

As graduate engineer trainees, we were accommodated in dingy rooms with three occupants, a nasty mess, stinking bathrooms and no comforts worth the name. We kept our body and souls together on a paltry salary of Rs 590 per month in the 1970s.

On retirement, one cannot but feel that one's life has been wasted serving the country. There is no respect for creativity, innovation, merit and all that makes the West outstanding. Our main pastime seems to be fighting for the "gau w mata" that is often ill-treated by those very people who claim to worship it as a holy animal.

I would not recommend anyone to waste their time in India. Let them fly abroad and enjoy life. What Smriti Irani is doing is good. We cannot govern ourselves. We can only be ruled and kowtow to the powers that be. –S Saran


I would like to clear a common misconception for a majority people in our country: in each Indian Institute of Technology, roughly 20-30 students get jobs abroad. People see the money translated from dollars to rupees, but don’t realise that despite having a salary of $100,000 (or Rs 62 lakh), about 30% is taxed. 95% of IITians remain in India for at least a year or two. On an average, an IITian earns around Rs 8-10 lakh, which is equivalent to a public sector undertaking job. Our tendency is see the 3-5% who are getting the inflated salaries and think all IITians earn a lot.

Initially almost all PSUs used to hire from IITs, but the so-called common people contested this. So the "brainy" people stopped going to the PSUs. And people ask why IITians are not contributing to the country. Even if a person from the IIT joins a PSU, how many such job opportunities come by in a year? And you expect an entire IIT batch to join it?

Also, the crores of rupees you see allocated to IITs, only a fraction goes in subsidising the fee. –Rahul Yadav


What gross misrepresentation of the importance of education in our country! A student does not join IIT with a pre-set mind that he/she would leave the country. Being a bookworm isn’t wrong in any way.

An IITian, or for that matter any student of a government financed university, is an asset for the nation, wherever she resides, whatever she does. If politicians are so concerned about the taxpayers’ money, let them stop flying business class, meeting in 5-star hotels and using tax-payer driven cars. After all, they get decent salaries to support themselves.

Let’s not point at the little education that the Indian youth is getting through government support. Education is a basic public service and a primary responsibility of the government. They have already failed in providing quality universal primary and secondary education. Now they wish to become a failure at all levels. I hope Smriti Irani will think a little before paying heed to such ill-thought out arguments. –Anuj Jindal


Firstly, I am really disturbed with the differences the writer is trying to make between IITians and non-IITians. If the question is all about people going abroad for jobs and their contribution towards the nation, then let me ask a question to the writer: Is the responsibility of serving the nation only on IITians? Don't the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research, Department of Biotechnology or Department of Science and Technology fund the projects or initiatives of private and deemed universities, about which even the college doesn't have much expertise or knowledge, and therefore isn't that a waste of taxpayers' money?

Only because the government subsidises the fees at IIT, some poorest of students get a chance to study there. Do only IITians look down upon government jobs or jobs in the Indian Armed Forces or the Defence Research and Development Organisation? Isn't the same done by students of other colleges too?

We have seen a progressive mindset in the government after many decades. Further, in a democratic arrangement, it is better if the government chooses the incentive-approach rather than banning or stopping something. Since the government is serious about developing a strong human resource which would contribute to its reputation, growth and development, let us encourage the government to encourage those who voluntarily come forward to serve the nation. –Sayan Ganguly


The cost of educating a student for four years is tiny compared to the cost of conducting research. Has anyone stopped to think about that? A lot of funds are required for research. The IITs conduct some of our country's best research, that too with underpaid research scholars. Check out the petitions since last year by research scholars all over the country for a raise in their scholarships. If the government cuts back on money, the quality of education will remain the same for engineering undergraduate students, but the quality of research that is being done at the IITs will definitely take a huge hit. –Avisek Gupta

Ashis Nandy: real diversity An interestinginterview of Ashis Nandy, and on a topic that is so close to home (“Ashis Nandy on being an Indian Christian, Julio Ribeiro's pain and why he opposes conversion”). Nandy says, and naturally, that he grew up in Calcutta where attacks on Christians are/were unthinkable. It's a sad commentary on the state of affairs that this is what I used to say when speaking about Kashmir, that Muslims attacking Hindus in Kashmir was as unimaginable as the Christians of Goa suddenly turning on the Hindus.

We were all proved wrong in one way or another. –Gayatri Ugra


I found the interview of Ashis Nandy, very apt. The real cultural and religious diversity of our country is depicted in it. I have been always following Nandy's writings and views. –Nandini Atmasiddha


Ashis Nandy has conveniently forgotten many things about Indian history. He himself has admitted that he was converted to Christianity four or five generations before, definitely during the British era as there was a huge threat to them. The British swindled properties and forced the conversion in India on the pretext of poverty, superstition and famine.

Nandy has reiterated many times that secularism is a word invented by the Europeans, but he does not believe that. He himself disagrees with his own gurus who converted him to Christianity.

He talked about the RSS as a group who works for Hinduism. There is nothing wrong in that. Mother Theresa worked for charity under the hidden agenda of conversion. Famines took place throughout the world at different locations, but there is was no hidden objective to convert the people, except during the Mughal and British rule. Mahatma Gandhi was quoted in his speech warning the British not to ‘attempt to convert India into your religion'. –R Sridhar


The gharwapsi is not a programme to terrorise minorities, but an expression of insecurity by Hindus who are being hounded in their own motherland and the only place in the world native to them. Nandy is from the literate, educated elite and so he can articulate his thoughts in a soft, sugar-coated "I am the victim" tone. The fact is that an average Christian (more importantly, the "converted" types) has immense hatred for Hindus and their rituals and speak openly in a coarse and rugged tone against them. I have experienced this personally on infinite counts and developed an intense hatred for such Christians. –Durga Prasad Vadlamudi

Bhushan has forgotten people have voted for KejriwalEven theletter written by Prashant Bhushan to Arvind Kejriwalsays that he and Yogendra Yadav were opposing Kejriwal in trying to bring the party to power (“'Goodbye and good luck': full text of open letter to Arvind Kejriwal from Prashant Bhushan”). In the end, Bhushan reminds Kejriwal that people have voted for him to get rid of some local problems and not for making a world-class party.

Bhushanji,this is what happens in life. We work hard and somebody takes away the fruit. If you are really good, then cling to the winning flag because you cannot do anything alone. You have forgotten that people voted for Kejriwal to get them out of corruption, price rise, etc.

If Bhushan want to do more for the people, he has to just focus on what people want and not what he thinks people may like. Kejriwal has understood that—and people have given him the seat for five years. -Dharamveer Singh


I feel bad for what has happened to Prashant Bhushan’s family. I remember he donated a huge amount to start the Aam Aadmi Party. I want to thanks him for filing so many PILs. I urge Bhushan to support the Loksatta party by Jayaprakash Narayan. I like his policies, and think his thought process will match. However, please don't be disheartened. If you leave, political life in India will be at a loss. –Ravi Dammalapati


People commuting solo should be asked to carpoolPublic transportneeds to be managed properly, particularly at peak hours. People commuting solo in cars should be stopped by the traffic inspector/authorised personnel. They should ask the driver why he/she is not carpooling if headed to the work place (“Five myths about traffic in Delhi and other Indian cities”). –Sudhir Neroy

Charging extra for voice calls far worse than charging for FBI am based in the United Arab Emirates and here I get to use WhatsApp, Facebook and Twitter for free. They charge to view videos not posted on Facebook, but all I did was enable hard-cap on the data so I do not get charged for other stuff. I know hard-cap is available in India too; I had it for my Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited connection too.

Charging extra for voice calls in a far worse offence thancharging for Facebook usage(“Double standards: Facebook and Google are happy to support net neutrality in US but violate it in India”). –SreeNadh

Self-cultivated ignorance is impervious to rationality
Why to be so upset about the Bharatiya Janata Party's stupidity andstereotyping? If the BJP and Indians at large think that Italians are only mafiosos/Latin lovers/Fascists and the likes, that is their problem, not ours (“We're more than just Mafiosi and Latin Lovers: An Italian responds to Giriraj's attack on Sonia”). It is a sad reflection of their ignorance and superficiality. Why should we Italians care about ignorant and superficial self-defeating stereotypes?

Should we advise Indians to study the history of Western law, the history of Western art, the history of Western science, literature and poetry and, more generally, the history of Italian contribution to world culture? Maybe we should. But, maybe, sadly enough, it would be a loss of time. Self-cultivated ignorance, of the kind so actively sponsored by the so-called Hindu nationalism, is impervious to rationality and, therefore, really very difficult to defeat. –Michelguglielmo Torri


For Australians, we Italians are just fashion designers and sofa-makers, along with the ubiquitous pizza and risotto, of course. Too subtle and complicated, except for Indians who do have a similar dish.

Bravo, my soul goes out to you! –Fabrizia

Owe explanation for letter to Chetan BhagatThe novelHalf Girlfriendwritten by Chetan Bhagat is a work of fiction. Even though the characters and stories depicted in it are not true, writer Devapriya Roy has misguided the fans of this book in a hazardous way (“An open letter from Riya Somani to Chetan Bhagat”). Is this because Devapriya wanted to be in the limelight writing her own words through the name of a famous character from this book? You owe us an explanation. –Kartik Mehta

My father’s bookshop was burnt in the 1984 riotsI was born and brought up in a Sikh family that had migrated from erstwhile Punjab that now is a part of Pakistan. My father and grandfather continued their journey starting from Jaipur to Udaipur until finally settling down in Rourkela, Orissa. Like most of the other Sikh migrants, it was a long struggle for them to establish something of their own from scratch. It took a few decades, until we started a bookshop called Forward Traders. Like a good Samaritan, he helped a few distant family members run the bookshop and make their living.

This was my favourite hideout in the weekends. My indulgence started with Enid Blyton along with Archie comics. Richie Rich and Disney too became a part of my summer vacation reading. As I grew up, I got fond of Alfred Hitchcock, Asterix, PG Wodehouse, Charles Dickens and so many other great writers.

However, in 1984, there were riots and our shop was burnt down. I went with my father to see what had remained—nothing. The sight of burnt books looked like dead bodies to me. This was the end my fantasyland. I can understand the pain when theAA Husain Bookshop shut down(“Requiem for the bookstore of my childhood”). –Amarjeet Singh

Labour unions in Kerala are high-handedYears ago, I went through a locallabour union's highhandedness in Thrissur when I needed to get my personal belongings loaded in a truck. Unfortunately, no one seems to perceive this problem there. Every local tries to look the other way. Left parties endorse them. How exorbitant, nonsensical sums charged by these vicious unions bring social justice to them, I fail to understand. Can leaders like Prakash Karat and Sitaram Yechury explain such behaviour by Kerala labour unions? Sooner or later, Kerala has to address this problem (“The most-discussed Kochi biennale show: US artist destroying his work to protest union demands”). –MM Singh

Reading Scroll on Android app is a pleasureI write to appreciate the quality of articles and journalism that your news portal has been delivering. With the introduction of your Android app, reading Scroll.in has become such a pleasure! I trust you will remain independent and truly ethical in your news reporting, and not succumb to the pressures from big industrial names like many news agencies in India have. –Ronny Jacob

Tendulkar, Dhoni can aid sportsmenIt is really sad to read articles on the state offunding for other sportsin our country, especially the lack of support from government agencies or private sponsors (“India’s ice hockey team hopes to melt hearts online, seeks to crowdfund trip to key tournament”). There is no dearth of money in this country, and there are many who can easily sponsor one player. People like Sachin Tendulkar, Mahendra Singh Dhoni and Virat Kohli, to name a few, have earned millions through advertising revenues alone, and can come to the aid of such sportsmen. –Indira Sampath

A crime is a crime, no matter what age
Shafqat Hussainwas 24 years old at the time of committing his crime. During cross-examination in the court of law at various junctures, his lawyers, family members and he never questioned his underage status. It started after all his appeals were gone in vain. All the time, his photo as a young boy is shown to the media rather than his photo when he committed the crime.

Moreover, it does not matter if a person of a young age commits a heinous crime of killing another boy far younger than him. A crime is a crime, and a murder is a murder. No matter what age the murderer committed the crime, he should go to the gallows (“Clamour to hang Shafqat Hussain reflects vengeful mood in Pakistan after Peshawar attacks”). –M Riyaz

Good infoGood information about therock sculpturesin Maharashtra (“Revealed: The secret of the ‘***-curse’ stones scattered across Maharashtra”). –Pushplata Shali

A picture can be misleadingInteresting story about theMarathi lit fest in Punjab(“Marathi literary fest in Punjab draws the expected response: bafflement”). However, the picture in the article can create issues between Sikh fundamentalists, as they are very active on social networks. Please change the picture, if possible. –Kulwinder Singh


This is national integration. Keep trying, we will succeed one day. –Pushplata Shali

Changes need to come soon at IIMC
I am a former student of theIndian Institute of Mass CommunicationDhenkanal, class of 2014. My seniors told me not to go to the Delhi campus because of their callous attitude. And to be honest, some faculty members are causing a lot of trouble, academic wise (“Leaked letters, RTIs, dissenting students: India's premier media institute has become the news”).

The equipment is outdated and the software belongs to the Stone Age. And except a handful, all the professors are lazy and boring. I am reminded of an incident in the Dhenkanal campus where a few female batchmates without evidence were yelled at for smoking. To be honest, it is their choice to smoke or not. The girls were told that because they were girls it was shameful for them to smoke. Is this where the future journalists are bred? Most of the boys smoked and not once were we threatened with expelling.

Change needs to come soon. A few people need to go. More industry heads need to come into the fold. Also, we were not allowed to go to the Delhi campus for job interviews. No company is going to travel to Dhenkanal, but the administration’s stance of not giving us a fair chance deeply hurt us. –Stephan Bayley

Why don’t you write about Delhi’s pollution too?I am not a BJP supporter and I do believe that the currentgovernment’s policies in Mumbaiare a ‘photocopy' of the Congress’ policies, as a friend put it. But your argument that the coastal road will encroach on fishing villages is stretching it thin (“Mumbai's coastal road plan is a welfare scheme for the well-to-do”).

These families lead a marginal existence and can be easily rehabilitated. Besides, 26/11 is too fresh. The coastline is easy pick for terrorists from the sea. The ecology is nothing unique. Let's be constructive and objective in all criticism. Otherwise we lose credibility.

Why, for example, don't you write on Delhi's pollution levels, about which the government is doing nothing? Or the brazen waiver of environmental clearances in ecologically sensitive areas, the scary green signal to remove forests that are in the way of projects? There are so many issues of wilful crony capitalism and environmental destruction, more or less unprecedented as official policy since the Independence. –S Balakrishnan

Seagull books is extraordinarySeagull Books of Calcuttais an amazing company: an inspirational and courageous boss, devoted staff and a gifted designer make Seagull something out of the ordinary (“How a six-person company from Calcutta publishes literary prizewinners from around the world”). Glad you did this piece. –Judith Vidal Hall

India positioned to negotiate in the GulfLast year we saw India negotiate to get people back from otherwar-affected countriesin the Middle East, including Libya, Iraq, and Saudi Arabia. India used its best resources—people who were familiar with the region and could negotiate with both the rebels and the government. It sent out its navy and air force and put the entire administrative machinery to work. They are even better prepared this time due to the experience gained from earlier rescue efforts, and this is why other countries are approaching India for assistance (“India to the rescue: US, France and 24 other nations ask New Delhi for help in Yemen”).

But what this also goes to show is that India is positioned to negotiate in that region. If India can manage during a crisis, it can surely manage during peaceful times as well. Why then does India constantly shy away from leveraging its power when it comes to protecting its own citizens who are migrant workers in that region? There may be many reasons for this—our trade relationships, oil imports and the region having more blue collared than white collared workers who have lesser political clout in the country. –Seeta Sharma

It was as if I were in LahoreTheLahore piece by Nandita Dasis a beautiful article written from the heart (“If you haven’t seen Lahore, you haven't even been born”). I enjoyed it completely as I am from Lahore. The actual Punjabi quote is somewhat like this "Jinhain Lahore nai waikhiya o jammeya ee nain." It's not "je" but "Jinhain", which means "whoever", "who", "whosoever", whilejeimplies "if". –Naweed


Nandita Das described Lahore so amazingly that I feel I was there when I was reading the article. -Dipty Mohanty


I read the article by Nandita Das on her recent visit to Lahore. I’m a keen reader of articles and books written on the Partition of India and Pakistan. I’m not sure why I have this interest, but I think maybe it’s because we the people of India share the same roots.

The way Nandita has made a comparison between the Delhi and Lahore and yet shown the similarities, shows that this old association between India and Pakistan is not sugar-coated and still lives on in many hearts. After all, the two nations are like a double cherry which grew together seemingly parted, yet in unison, moulded onto one stem. –Khushbakht Junaid


Nandita Das' article on Lahore and those stunning photographs are superb. A warm heart is always echoed wherever one goes. Let's hear more from her on Lahore. I am sure she has made Sadat Hasan Manto happy. –Varsha Das

Shoaib Daniyal: Wrong conclusions
Shoaib Daniyal's piece on themyths of the Muslim population growthsays in the last paragraph that large scale immigration from Bangladesh is not true, as Muslim population growth in Assam is same as the national average (“Five charts that puncture the bogey of Muslim population growth”). He conveniently chooses 2001 census data for this and ignores the 2011 data released in some newspapers like Times of India and The Indian Express.

The share of Muslim population in Assam has grown from 30 to 34%, according to reports in these newspapers. It is highest among all Indian states. In Bengal, it has grown from 25 to 27 %. So, the writer chooses 2001 census data to suit his bias and ignores the 2011 data. –Jatak Katha


The story about puncturing the bogey of Muslim population growth made for a good read. Please do a similar story on the Christian population. Despite having arrived in India 2,000 years ago, the population of Christians is less than 2% of the Indian population and numerically it is between 2.3 and 2.4 crore. But every day, the RSS and fringe groups make a hue and cry about the burgeoning Christian population . –Kay Benedict


This article is quite poor. I have not read it completely, but what I have read properly is the PEW Research Center study, a few days back. Your first point in the article talks about the number of Muslims overtaking the number of Hindus in India. Where does it say that in the PEW study?

The PEW study simply says that by 2050, India will have the largest Muslim population. It’s an absolute number, not a percentage. By 2050, India will have a population of 2.5 billion. Is it hard to believe that there will be 700 million Muslims among them? That is still less than 30% of the total population, which is more than today, but not a majority. In absolute terms, that number will be more than any other country. So I don't quite see where you get this notion of talking about Muslims overtaking the Hindu population in India. That is not going to happen by 2050 and nobody claims it will in the PEW study either. –Kinjal Saurabh


In your article puncturing the bogey of Muslim population growth, the final bogey relates to Bangladeshi immigration. I am not too sure the census data will reveal any such trend. This is largely because the immigration is illegal and does not feature in our records. –Shovik

How is literary criticism in the age of social media?I thought thewriting in the age of social mediaby Arunava Sinha was both insightful and informative (“The digital age is changing writing more than it is changing reading”). What does the writer make of literary criticism in the age of social media? I'd love to read a piece on that. –Subuhi Jiwani

Jayalalitha will rule as Tamil Nadu CM againWhatever be the allegations againstJ Jayalalithaa, we, the people of Tamil Nadu believe that she will come out successful and will once again rule the state as its chief minister. It is going to happen and everyone will see this (“As Jayalalitha awaits key court verdict, arresting ex-minister helps defuse a crisis for her party”). –ASI Kannan

Anti-Hindu website
Are you a Pakistani or an Indian Pakistani or a Christian funded non governmental organisation who always write articles that are anti-Hindu and anti-Modi? Your views should be fair to everyone and not one-sided. –Sandeep B

Lord Krishna and Arjun were dark-skinned too
In this aboutcolour prejudice, there is one point which is not quite right (“Unfair and unlovely: Most theories about the roots of colour prejudice are misguided”). It says: "the many examples of light skin being linked to beauty in Indian classical literature long before the imperialist epoch. Confronted with this evidence, historians tend to fall back on caste as the solution. The word for caste in Sanskrit is varna, meaning colour or complexion, and suggests a colour divide in the subcontinent millennia before imperialism."

Actually, in the great epic Mahabharat, two of the heroines famous for their beauty are dark-skinned. Draupadi and Satyawati have Krishna and Kali as their alternate names. Not just the heroines, the two heroes of the famous epic are also dark-skinned—Krishna and Arjun. Moreover, the other most popular Gods in India are also dark-skinned—Rama and Shiva. Therefore, I must say, in ancient India people did believe that "dark is beautiful". –Sudhir

Urdu the most neglected of India's major languages‎I have read Zafar Anjum's article on the"]Scroll.in - News. Politics. Culture.decline of Urdu[/URL]in India. Its subjugation can be attributed to the fact that our enemy Pakistan made it the official language. So we had to dump it with a Pakistani Muslim tag (“Looking in vain for Urdu in New Delhi’s world of books”).

This has made Urdu the most neglected of India's major languages. Also, it had no region left to call its own. Muslims carried the torch for as long as they could. The Muslim too belongs to a region and speaks the regional language. A Tamil chap will speak Tamil irrespective of his religion. So other regional ‎languages thrive.

The author like many lovers of Hindi and Urdu has published in English‎. I have been born and brought up in Mumbai and speak the local lingo with no knowledge of Urdu except what I have learnt as an adult. And I will make sure Urdu survives, even if I have to abandon the script. –Quateel Ahmad

Insightful pieceThe comparison of"]Scroll.in - News. Politics. Culture.Bollywood with the Congress Party[/URL]by Rohan Sippy is such an insightful piece ("Why Bollywood is like the Congress Party"). You continue to surprise me with the subjects you cover and the perspective you bring to it each time. You do such good work in these testing times. Respect. –Rafeeq Ellias

Sometimes people just want to be enteratined"]Scroll.in - News. Politics. Culture.Ek Paheli Leela[/URL]looks amazing, so maybe it doesn’t matter if Sunny Leone can or can’t act (“Film review: In 'Ek Paheli Leela', Sunny Leone gets a showcase for her non-existent acting talent”). Rajasthan is my favourite place in the world and this trailer alone is a great tourist incentive. The song sequences are also fabulous. Sometimes critics forget that people just want to be entertained and uplifted. –Sandy

Story gives human perspective to Yemen evactuationsThank you for the"]Scroll.in - News. Politics. Culture.Bohra Muslims[/URL]article. It was very informative and well written (“India's Bohra Muslims are back safely from Yemen but have many reasons to still be anxious”). It gives a human perspective and a context to the conflict, the evacuation, the culture and tradition of a little-known community caught in this unfortunate turn of events. –Shashi Khorana

Scroll.in - News. Politics. Culture.


Feb 7, 2015
It's time for the West to stop the ghar wapsi!

Bring the aircraft carriers into attack formation in the Indian Ocean. Task Force 74 is back.

Users Who Are Viewing This Thread (Total: 1, Members: 0, Guests: 1)

Top Bottom