Hanuman 2.0 is not benign.
No he is not. Because the word “benign” itself is misunderstood by the writer. And he was never “2.0” either. Hindu gods don’t get “upgraded” like software. They are all encompassing. Nor is he any symbol of “militant Hinduism” because the latter does not exist. Hinduism by its nature preaches & practices “ahimsa,” a word not only not popular, but non existent in many other faiths.
A classic case of a blatant attempt at re-branding Hindu gods as per the whims and fancies of the writers, a certain article by the news factory ‘The Wire’ started getting shared on social media, and numerous entities (deliberate use of the word “entities” instead of “people”) furiously worked to get it to top searches. Why?
Before reading the article, I would suggest the innocuous Hindu and the ignorant “liberal” to consider a few points which are bypassed grandly in the said narrative. It is an exhibit of not only shallow to poor knowledge of Hinduism, but a very low class attempt at distorting, mutilating the image of Hindu gods, Hindus and Hinduism at large, mashing all of it together into a newly coined word called “Hindutva.”
That is a question which is best answered after considering all the glaring “errors” in the article. An answer that will be obvious to any intelligent reader.
No Proof of Claims
This article, which the left liberals are all chiming in to spread & share, does not have a single proof of the many things that are claimed in the article. For instance, there is no proof that the “Gujjar” guy flashed his sword at the journalist. There is no proof that there were 40-50 of them. There is also no proof that there was an avalanche of cars with Hanuman stickers. If the journalist could get footage of one passer-by car with “Gujjar” boys wearing saffron & flashing swords in the air, she could most definitely have taken videos and pictures of everything else as well. Where are those? The fact that they could have been easily available, but are not, is the biggest indicator that these are not “facts” but “fiction.”
Baseless Allegations Against the UP Police
She insults the UP Police, which she claims are standing and talking (again no proof of the same) and “doing nothing.” As far as law and order goes, police is responsible for “doing something” when there is a law and order situation. Why will the police do something when all is already as peaceful as can be? One more allegation without proof or cause. IS this an indirect attempt at indicting the UP government for “spreading a law and order situation” and “Hindutva”? The answer seems obvious.
Bajrang dal/RSS goons roaming the streets of Noida brandishing swords and other weapons. One came up to our cab and slashed at the window. No police to be seen anywhere. Spotted one laughing and chatting with them. Is it a show of Hindu strength because of #easter? pic.twitter.com/4E8D0fArzP
— Nilanjana Bhowmick (@nilanjanab) April 1, 2018
This article is a classic case of the writer trying to pass on her own prejudiced opinions as facts, forgetting the very spelling of journalism. Additionally, she implies that this is “because of Easter,” fanning and overtly encouraging communal-ism between two religions.
Giving a New Colour of “Violence” to Saffron
In Hinduism, saffron is the color of dharma. It is the sign of “all is well,” the sign of Ram Rajya, as opposed to Jungle Raj, the sign of good, as opposed to evil, the sign of right as opposed to wrongdoings.
All deities of Bhagwan Hanuman are always painted in saffron in entirety. Anyone who has ever visited a Hanuman temple will know this. There is nothing unusual about wearing saffron when celebrating your love for Hanuman.
सङ्कर सुवन केसरीनन्दन ।
तेज प्रताप महा जग बन्दन ॥६॥
Bhagwan Hanuman is even called “Kesarinandan.”
It is also important to understand that as opposed to many other cultures & religions, Hinduism at its very core is a lifestyle of celebration as a religion. All learning, all training, everything is incorporated into celebration. Sanskrit shlokas are chanted in every street and corner in villages. Even the beggars in front of temples sing bhajans with manjiras. Hinduism is not a religion for a secluded few. Everyone is welcome to celebrate divinity. Because the more you celebrate divinity outside, more easily you will be able to see it inside you, and celebrate your own divine existence on the planet.
Hinduism is “nithyotsava” (eternal celebration). It is a lifelong celebration. So there is nothing unusual about a few Hanuman devotees celebrating on a street somewhere. There is no violence. Only a celebratory existence. Perhaps those who do not understand anything other than violence and aggression fail to see the smiles on others’ faces as benign.
To conjure a word called “Hindutva” and keep using it after every few words to imply aggression and violence, and eventually to replace the word “Hinduism” with “Hindutva” is not a candid mistake. It is done by design to brand all of Hinduism wrongly, falsely and illegitimately. Those who don’t understand Hinduism, have no knowledge of it, have no right to even comment on it, leave alone brand it.
Shows Zero Knowledge of Bhagwan Hanuman
When a journalist writes about subjects they are not aware of, it is part of their responsibility to research, learn and write. There can be no explanation or justification for writing like an ignoramus.
Anyone who is even vaguely familiar with Ramayana and Hanuman Chalisa, will know Bhagwan Hanuman as the very embodiment of strength, will power, intelligence, and ferociousness. Here are a few aspects of the divinity of Bhagwan Hanuman, which must be remembered by both Hindus and the “liberal” crowd who write Hindu names but are very proud of their ignorance of their own culture and heritage:
- Bhagwan Hanuman was the 13th Rudra avatar of Mahadeva, Shiva. He incarnated to support Sri Ram in his mission of destroying the adharma on the planet in the form of Ravan.
- Bhagwan Hanuman was the son of “Vaayu” or the Wind god, hence born with the power, agility and yogic prana shakti of Wind.
- He was the master of ashta maha siddhis – anima, mahima, laghima, Garima, praapti, prakamya, ishitva, vashitva. They mean: the ability to be very small (as small as an “anu” or atom), ability to be very huge, ability to be very light, ability to be very heavy, ability to reach anywhere, ability to obtain anything, supreme leadership qualities, and ability to control anything, respectively. Bhagwan Hanuman had these super-human powers since birth and they were awakened fully when he had to cross the Indian Ocean over to Lanka to fulfil the mission of Bhagwan Sri Ram. This goes to show, that Hanuman, as opposed to the “cute” picture alone that the writer tries to sell, was a god of many facets, all of which show his divinity, and ability to destroy adharma.
- Bhagwan Hanuman was a learned scholar, or “pandit.” He was the one sent to do “shaastraarth” with Bhagwan Sri Ram and Sri Lakshman when their identities were unknown.
- Bhagwan Hanuman burnt the entire Lanka with his tail, when Ravan tried to capture him, showing the might and “vivek” or intelligence of just one member of Sri Ram’s army and to scare the enemy.
- Bhagwan Hanuman embodies devotion, and it is one aspect of his devotion to Bhagwan Sri Ram, that he wages the war with him, commanding an entire army of monkeys towards Lanka.
These are real stories, which show the true meaning of love and devotion. Anyone who has a shallow understanding, or a wall-fly perspective of devotion often tries to project devotion as inaction and a fake smile on your lips. But true devotion towards the divine comes from depth of one’s being. The most devoted characters were also the most fierce, because it takes ferociousness to protect your devotion and stand up for dharma.
महाबीर बिक्रम बजरङ्गी ।
कुमति निवार सुमति के सङ्गी ॥३॥
Ferociousness is a quality of those who have depth of existence, who are grounded in cosmic truths, not the weak anger and vengeance of those who don’t care about others or what happens to the world. Ravan had vengeance – weak, immoral, uncaring, selfish, always ready to usurp what is not his, including someone else’s wife! Hanuman had ferociousness – he was fearless, trusting the divine, fueled by his devotion and the power of siding up with dharma, smart enough to know how to scare the enemy without hurting anyone, uses his superhuman powers to fulfill the mission successfully.
Hindu Gods are All Ferocious
The writer has shown ignorance not only of Hanuman, but also of all Hindu Gods. Hindu gods have a fierce aspect to them, which destroys all adharma and negativity on the planet, restoring balance to the cosmos.
Shiva has a ferocious aspect as Kalabhairava, Sharabeshwara, Veerabhadra.
Devi has a ferocious aspect as Kaali, Chandi, Durga, Mahishasurmardini
Vishnu has a ferocious aspect as Narsimha
This is nothing to be afraid of or disrespectful towards. It is very intrinsic, very much a core aspect of Cosmic existence. All adharma HAS to be destroyed by powerful divine forces. That is the law of life, the karma all beings need to go through. To be scared of these forces only goes to show which side you are on – if you can say with all your heart that you are propagating dharma, you have nothing to be scared of. If you are on the side of adharma, you should be afraid, because no Hindus will come to hurt you, as they follow ahimsa, but your own karma will lead you to face the fierce aspects of these divine forces and no one will be able to save you.
It is for these aspects of our gods also that we all love them. Because they protect the innocent and the sincere from the forces that cause us harm.
भूत पिसाच निकट नहिं आवै ।
महाबीर जब नाम सुनावै ॥२४॥
Hinduism Has Already Shown Its “Tolerance”
The very fact that after writing such a derogatory article on Bhagwan Hanuman and abusing the devotion of millions the writer of the article and the owner of the publication are still alive is the biggest example of the fact that Hindus ARE tolerant, and Hinduism as a culture is tolerant. No further proof needs to be given or is even required.
I would urge the writer to – as a social experiment – write derogatory articles on the religious icons of other popular religions of this country and see how much tolerance she receives from those quarters. I can bet that even that scenario, Hindus will be the first ones to defend her and protect her and she will receive no listening, leave alone sympathy, from the fundamentalists of other religions. Even the non-fundamentalists will not be able to save her from the rampant “intolerance.”
Attempts at Spreading Fear Amongst Citizens of Noida
The article has presented a distorted image of an otherwise peaceful city. As a citizen of Noida myself, I can be sure that the only violent incidents I encounter are occasional and often those by jihadists assaulting another Hindu. The writer has taken to fear-mongering to, arguably, agitate people and make them lose faith in their own gods, and possibly also the government’s ability to address violence. The real agenda remains unknown. Thankfully, it did not seem to have worked. But the attempt is despicable just the same, and counts as attempts to disrupt the peace and normal functioning of a place by misrepresentation of a religious group. To state that Noida is no longer “secular” is ironic, because if it were really not secular, the writer would have been in a far less desirable place by now.
Backlash – Twitter Erupts with #BajrangiTwitter
In response to this derogatory article, the internet, especially Twitter, erupted with posts with the hashtag #BajrangiTwitter to show the solidarity of Hindus against baseless agendas to falsely frame Hinduism and Hindu gods as “militant.” It is noteworthy that even in the face of downright insults, Hindus found inspiration and creativity, and many artists took to painting Hanuman with love, and others shared beautiful images of Hanuman deities.
— karan acharya (@karanacharya7) April 6, 2018
— OG Saffron (@OGSaffron) April 7, 2018
— Deewan. (@NKDeewan) April 6, 2018
— Chintan Shah (@chintan20) April 7, 2018
Long before #BajrangiTwitter, it was Shri Samarth Ramdas who brought about the original Bajrangi resurgence. He would go to Hindu villages and install Hanuman murtis. Weakness does not suit us, he would say. He encouraged us to get strong and defend our Dharma. Shri Ram Jai Ram! pic.twitter.com/E3rg0zTU9v
— OG Saffron (@OGSaffron) April 6, 2018
— Akash 🇮🇳 (@ViratBomB_) April 6, 2018
— VP (@03bch100) April 6, 2018
It is surprising that even westerners know more about Bhagwan Hanuman than some Indian Hindus!
Here is a song by Krishna Das & MC Yogi, western Hindus singing praise of Bhagwan Hanuman, for all those who want to celebrate the devotion of Bajrang Bali Hanuman: