The common refrain of Hindus, especially the species who call themselves as Secular, that all religions are the same.
All religions are equal.
All religion teaches the same thing.
I am one of the few who maintain in private conversations and in Public including my blogs that it is sheer non sense and it is nothing but hypocrisy or inadequate knowledge of the Religions being talked about.
I have been meaning to write on this for quite sometime, but the spark that made me write now is a piece written by Maria Wirth, which was forwarded to me by Hindu Association,USA.
I am reproducing excerpts towards the close of this post.
When people talk of all religions being the same, they mean only two,Christianity and Islam.
How are these the same as Hinduism?
Christianity was framed , not formed by Constantine some three hundred years after the death of Christ.
As a matter of record nobody knows the name of Jesus Christ, Jesus meaning son of God,
“A typical Jew in Jesus’ time had only one name, sometimes supplemented with the father’s name or the individual’s hometown. Thus, in the New Testament, Jesus is referred to as “Jesus of Nazareth”[g] (Matthew 26:71), “Joseph’s son” (Luke 4:22)
“The etymology of Jesus’ name in the context of the New Testament is generally given as “Yahweh is salvation’
The word Christ is derived from the Greek Χριστός (Christos), which is a translation of the Hebrew מָשִׁיחַ (Masiah), meaning the “anointed” and usually transliterated into English as “Messiah
“Christ (//; ancient Greek: Χριστός, Christós, meaning “anointed”) is a translation of the Hebrew מָשִׁיחַ (Māšîaḥ) and the Syriac ܡܫܝܚܐ (M’shiha), the Messiah, and is used as a title for Jesus in the New Testament”.(wiki)
Hinduism was not founded or framed by any one.
Its date is unknown, but to get an idea it is commonly agreed, to have some date, that the Vedas were composed around 5000BC
Nor does it have a Preacher.
Christianity talks about Father, Son and the Holy Ghost.
Will some one tell me how many worship the Father?
Hinduism has Attributeless Reality,Brahman and has Reality with names and Forms to fecilitate concentration.
Christianity calls people who believe in things, faiths other than Christianity as heathen and it comes these people to Hell.
Lord Krishna says in the Bhagavad Gita in the 18th Chapter to Arjuna that though He (Krishna) has taught Arjuna about what Reality is in the Bhagavad Gita, Arjuna is to thin for himself and choose a path that suits him!
Christianity decries Idol worship,but the irony is it worships +!
Hinduism worships many Gods and Goddesses(there are as many Gods and Goddesses as Human dispositions are)
For explanation on these please read my posts filed under Hinduism/Indian Philosophy.
Hinduism does not believe in individual irresponsibility.
One is responsible for his actions.
There is none to bear your Cross(pun intended)
Hinduism does not believe in Religious conversion, while Christianity breathes it.
Christianity believes in salvation through Christ.
Hinduism speaks more of your effort.
God does not condone your sins, even if the doer is the personification of God Himself.
Hinduism does not ascribe an entity,Satan solely responsible for everything that is presumed to be evil.
In Hinduism everything is God, including what we humans decide and often change what Good is.
Non violence and forbearance is the hall-mark of Hinduism.
Christianity shuns dissensions.
Hinduism does not impose itself on others, the credo of Christianity is to force it down the throat.
Christian Ethics is being spoken as if it is some thing that has not found in Hinduism.
One tenet of Christianity that you should proselytize against one’s Will is enough to wipe off its Ethics.
People say in Christianity all are equal.
Then why separate Churches for the Dalits?
I am not touching the philosophical aspects as it would need at least five or six posts.
I have briefly stated the most salient points here.
In what way then, is Christianity and Hinduism are the same?
Post on Hinduism and Islam follows
Observations by someone who grew up in the stifling atmosphere of dogmatic Christianity and appreciates the freshness and freedom of undogmatic Hinduism– and wonders why a section of Hindus are so apologetic about their religion when it actually is the best bet for a fulfilling life.
Hindus used to say, “All religions are equal”. They did not want to see that the two biggies, Christianity and Islam, did not agree. Each of those religions claimed for itself, “We alone are the only true religion. Our God is the only true God.” They pitied Hindus that they might actually believe that by stating that all religions are equal, Hinduism would be elevated to their level. Of course, the ‘true religions’ will never allow this.
Now Hindus say, “We respect all religions. We teach it to our children. Our children hear a lot about Christianity and Islam and how good these religions are. We don’t want to offend anyone, so we teach very little about Hinduism and what we teach is only about superficial things, like festivals and customs and not about the deep philosophy and scientific insights which would portray Hinduism in a good light and might irritate other religions.”
Again, Hindus don’t want to see that Christianity and Islam do not respect Hinduism. The clergy of those religions don’t say it into their face, but to their own flock: “Hindus go to hell, if they don’t convert to the true religion. It is their own fault. We have told them about Jesus and his Father or the Prophet and Allah respectively. Still, they are so arrogant and foolish and hold on to their false gods. But God/Allah is great. He will punish them with eternal hellfire.”
In a variation of “We respect all religions” Hindus also say, “All religions teach the human being to be virtuous and good and lead him to God, the creator. Hindus attend Inter Faith Dialogues and try to find the commonalities. Of course these are there. Hindus try to build on them. “Yes, all religions have good points. Yes, all religions have good people.” They keep repeating that all religions teach goodness, as if to convince themselves. However, deep down, Hindus know that this is not honest and lacks intellectual integrity. They know that Christianity and Islam have gone off track by preaching exclusiveness and hate to their flock. Those religions have encouraged persecution of others and brainwashed otherwise kind human beings into fighting for an imaginary god who supposedly hates all those ‘others’ who don’t believe, what they are told to believe. They have left a trail of bloodshed in history. But Hindus choose to ignore it. ‘Why provoke unnecessarily?’ they might feel, still betraying a psyche wounded by thousand years of oppression.
Is it not time that Hindus call a spade a spade? Swami Vivekananda has said that every Hindu who leaves his faith is not one Hindu less but one enemy more. He said this while India was ruled by the British, and Christians and Muslims were encouraged to feel superior to the “idol worshipping Hindu”. Hindus were not in a position to put the record straight, as their own elite put Hinduism down due to a malicious British education policy. Yet today, 66 years after independence, it is about time to tell the world loudly and boldly what Hinduism is about.