Friday, January 31, 2014

‘Religion’ is pure fraud; it does not have an existence!

'Religion' is no more than a mental abstraction from ‘culture’. Cooked up by European-Christian colonialists, the concept of 'religion' has never had any real existence – across the world and through history. India's diverse cultures have never had anything to do with ‘religion’, which is the longest-running hoax in human history, a Ponzi scheme of sorts, being perpetuated now principally by 'Christian' and 'Muslim' fraudsters.

‘Religion’ is a fraudulent concept. In that it has no real existence, it is perhaps the biggest and longest-running hoax in human history.

‘Religion’ was cunningly abstracted as a concept from 'culture' - (‘culture’, that is the wholeness of human-social life) - and then imposed through imperialist expansion as a false identity on the people brought to submission through force or fraud.

Please note that ‘abstraction’ is purely a mental process. What it means here is that one takes, quite arbitrarily, just a few imagined features of a ‘culture’, give that set of features a new label – i.e. ‘religion’ – and then begin to treat it as a separate category and as a weapon to subjugate people and undermine their cultures.

Even though ‘religion’ is a mere mental abstraction from ‘culture’ and has no real existence other than its supposed inherence within 'culture', there are three species – Judaism, Christianity and Islam, each of them a fraud in itself and an enemy of all human cultures – which have included themselves (so to speak) in this category.

The fact that Judaism, Christianity and Islam place themselves in this fraudulent category does nothing to give actual existence to ‘religion’ which remains a mere mental abstraction from ‘culture’ – i.e. something that has no existence of its own, but is purely assumed to inhere in certain aspects of ‘culture’.

This inclusion, however, does give totalitarian ideologies - which is what Christianity and Islam are - the smokescreen of ‘religion’ to wage a war against all human cultures and expand their hegemony.

In so far as it serves to isolate those three dangerous, ethnocidal viruses from all human cultures, the inclusion of those species in the category of 'religion' — or two if we conflate the first two into ‘Judeo-Christianity’— could be regarded as helpful. 

'Cultures' mislabelled as 'religions'

The assumed equivalence between Judaism, Christianity or Islam on the one hand and the so called ‘Hinduism’ on the other is a fraud -- (and so is the whole construct of ‘majority’ and ‘minority’) -- based as it is on juxtaposing of two unlike, incommensurable things.

None of the wide variety of peoples herded together under the label ‘Hindu’ represent anything that remotely resembles a ‘religion’ in the sense that Judaism, Christianity and Islam regard themselves as ‘religions’. The peoples labelled as 'Hindu' belong to a wide variety of 'cultures' that have historically had deep interconnections and mutual give and take.

So there is no such thing as a ‘religion’ called ‘Hinduism’. It simply doesn't exist anywhere in the world in any part or form remotely resembling Judaism, Christianity and Islam.

Likewise there is no such thing as a ‘religion’ called ‘Buddhism’ or ‘Jainism’ or ‘Sikhism’ or ‘Confucianism’, etc., in any part or form remotely resembling Judaism, Christianity and Islam.

It's also true the other way round: almost all the ‘authorized’ varieties of Judaism, Christianity and Islam have the fundamental elements of ‘religion’, so that they remain unlike ‘cultures’ found outside 'Christian' and 'Islamic' worlds. 

Readers can find a lot of scholarly literature on the Web on how European-Christian colonialists prepared the 'competitive' (and conflict-prone) ground for evangelization by mischaracterizing and misbranding diverse 'cultures' of the world as 'religions'.

So diverse and syncretistic 'cultures' found across the world were given the cast of 'religion' - or were constructed - by the European-Christian colonialists in order to be evaluated on the standards of what they branded as the 'True Religion' (Christianity) for slicing, dicing and eventual destruction.

India's great synretistic cultures came to be constructed as 'Hinduism' - the 'religion' - in the same colonial milieu.

An article titled, 'From Manusmriti to Madhusmriti', by Madhu Kishwar (Indian academic, activist and founder-editor of Manushi), on the link below gives a flavour of how 'Hinduism', the 'religion', came to be 'constructed' by the British colonialists, even though the writer hasn't repudiated 'religion' - like I have done - as a concept that is alien to all human cultures across the world; she continues to use the word 'religion' for Indian 'cultures' that were subsumed by the British colonialists into the so called 'Hinduism'.

http://manushi.in/2013/01/08/from-manusmriti-to-madhusmriti-2/

The following is an excerpt from the article; it is a para from a part with subheading, 'The Search for Non-Existent ‘Hindu Fundamentals'.

(Quote) In the late 18th century, the British began to study the ancient shastras to develop a set of legal principles that would assist them in adjudicating disputes within Indian civil society. In fact, they found there was no single body of canonical law, no Hindu Pope to legitimise a uniform legal code for all the diverse communities of India, no Shankaracharya whose writ reigned all over the country. 

Even religious interpretations of popular epics like the Ramayana failed to fit the bill because every community and every age exercised the freedom to recite and write its own version. We have inherited hundreds of recognised and respected versions of this text, and many are still being created. The flourishing of such variation and diversity, however, did not prevent the British from searching for a definitive canon of Hindu law. (Unquote)

How can 'religion' not exist?

At first glance, a belief or a set of beliefs (also known as 'creed') -- which, in the case of Christianity, may also undergo amendments over time -- would appear to be at the centre of 'religion'. Creed is based on certain 'historical' claims to 'truth'. It's easy to see why this 'belief' system never works. How can anyone control belief? How can anyone measure belief or the degree of belief of a supposed believer?

Again it's easy to see that despite pretending to be bodies of believers and raising hell in the name of their creed, Christianity and Islam are chiefly not about enforcing belief, which is actually an impossible task, but only about (mis-)labelling people and enlisting them in its ranks.

That is, expansionism and empire building is the name of the game, by fraud or coercion.
It's like building an army on the basis of 'us' and 'them', pulling more of 'them' into 'us' and then training the freshly labelled 'us' to treat their own as 'them'.

This impossibility of enforcing, or even ascertaining, belief in its core creed -- despite all the fuss (and blood-letting) over 'faith' and 'Imaan' and 'conversion' to that 'faith' and 'Imaan' -- is the most important reason why the whole concept of 'religion' is a fraud.

In other words, it's impossible for anyone to even ascertain whether or not a person is actually 'Christian' or 'Muslim' in the creedal sense of being a 'Christian' or 'Muslim'. A person's beliefs are mental states that can never be ascertained or measured; they, in fact, keep changing.

So 'religion' can at best be professed - i.e. one must claim or declare that one believes in or has an allegiance to a religion or set of beliefs; it's merely a labelling system.

A person belonging to a culture, on the other hand, doesn't have to claim or declare that he believes in or has an allegiance to their culture; their culture speaks through the way they live their lives. And so people are readily acknowledged as belonging to a certain culture; no initiations, professions or declarations are needed.

'Religion' thus has only a superficial character; it exists either only as a imposed/fraudulent label or is manifested through certain visible and concrete practices like flaunting a Bible or Quran or going to a church or mosque or performing certain rituals. But who cares, as long as the headcount keeps rising!

And that, by the way, also explains the philosophically and morally bankrupt nature of both Christianity and Islam. (Given the cognate nature of Judaism and Christianity, Judaism should be assumed to be included in this whole argument, even if it's not mentioned here.)

That ought to explain further what I mean when I say that 'religion' - (i.e. Judaism, Christianity and Islam) - has no real existence; it's only assumed to occur as a set of visible signs and practices, such as crosses, crescents, books, going to churches and mosques, rituals, festivals, etc.

So what's the whole point of spreading 'religion - i.e. conversion, proselytization, Tableegh, etc.- even at the cost of the amazing diversity of cultures that ensure human survival and provide meaning to human life?

Answer to that question ought to be obvious to anyone who is familiar with the character and conduct of 'Christianity' and 'Islam' in past and present times.
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As to the existence of 'religion', the following is a telling quote from Jonathan Z. Smith, a prominent American historian of ‘religions’. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jonathan_Z._Smith), taken from his introduction to his book, 'Imagining Religion'.

“...while there is a staggering amount of data, phenomena, of human experiences and expressions that might be characterized in one culture or another, by one criterion or another, as religion — there is no data for religion. Religion is solely the creation of the scholar’s study. It is created for the scholar’s analytic purposes by his imaginative acts of comparison and generalization. Religion has no existence apart from the academy.”

http://www.amazon.com/Imagining-Religion-Babylon-Jonestown-Chicago/dp/0226763609

To get a sense of how this fraudulent and abusive concept called ‘True Religion’ was fabricated by European-Christian colonialists and then used as a 'standard' to mischaracterize and straitjacket the wide variety of 'cultures' across the world as 'religions', such as 'Hinduism' and 'Buddhism', check Smith's paper, 'Religion, Religions, Religious', on the following link.

http://www.iupui.edu/~womrel/Rel433%20Readings/SearchableTextFiles/Smith_ReligionReligionsReligious.pdf

‘Religion’ destroys ‘culture’

‘Religion’ is predatory, colonial and imperial in character; it builds and expands itself by subverting or cannibalizing 'culture' and trying madly to sever the historical connection the subdued peoples have with their 'cultures' and heritage, often attempting to 'erase' history in the process.

‘Religion’ is alien not just to Indic cultures and civilization, but to all human cultures and civilization throughout history relative to which it's quite a recent affliction.

It goes without saying that human species do not need this affliction, but need to get rid of it.

There is absolutely nothing —nothing worthwhile in terms of culture and philosophy —that ‘religion’ has given to the world. It has, on the contrary, attempted to destroy what has been worthwhile in terms of culture and philosophy. Whatever little a "religion" flaunts as its own 'property' in terms of culture and philosophy has been appropriated/plagiarized from the larger culture or developed in spite of it, not because of it.

Human civilization needs as much diversity and enrichment of ‘culture’ and ‘philosophy’ – of both of which ‘religion’ is the mortal enemy – as possible.

‘Religion’ anathematizes ‘syncretism’

All human cultures everywhere have naturally been ‘syncretistic’ whereas ‘religion’ execrates and attempts madly to destroy ‘syncretism’ – quite impossibly – in order to implant its own absolutist ideology. ‘Syncretism’ is the active principle in the smooth functioning of all human societies, including those that have been colonized by ‘religions’.  

‘Religion’ attempts to supplant cultural diversity with a ‘monoculture’ of sorts or an enforced uniformity, thus endangering the very prospects of human survival.

Taking into account the destructive effects of colonialism – of which ‘religion’ is the essential part and parcel – on the cultural and philosophical makeup of human societies, it should not be difficult for anyone to see how and why people across the world have been fooled or coerced into describing their own 'cultures' as ‘religion’ and assuming false identities for themselves.

It's pathetic to see even 'educated' people holding forth on ‘religion’ and using this fraudulent and abusive concept to characterize 'cultures' that have somehow survived the imperialist assault of the religionists.
‘Religion’ is pure fraud — which is to say that the so called 'prophetic-monotheistic' cults of Judaism, Christianity and Islam are a fraud on humanity.

It's easy to see why the so called 'prophetic-monotheism' is the most dangerously absolutist and totalitarian ideology ever devised by human mind; it's the original prototype of all colonialism, imperialism and Fascism. Nothing like it has ever existed in human cultures and civilization, outside of Judaism, Christianity and Islam.

'Son-of-the-God/prophetic-monotheism' – with all its claptrap of ‘revelation and ‘book’ – is such non-sense that once one understands it - which doesn't take long for any critical thinker - one laughs like one does on a bad joke. 

They are fraud because they claim monopoly over absolute truth and base that claim on ‘histories’ that are little more than mythologies, forgeries or plain nonsense.

‘Christianity’ is, of course, the biggest fraud in human history — the biggest hoax, the biggest fabrication, the most evil and bloodiest in its intentions and actions. Islam comes a not-very-distant second.

These two cults are the two fundamental models of falsehood, fraud, violence, imperialism, ethnocide, hypocrisy, irrationality and a lot of other evil that afflicts human societies since they were cursed with these two lethal diseases.  

Being a crucial concept, ‘syncretism’ needs some elaboration.

‘Syncretism’ is the co-existence of diverse or opposite beliefs or practices within a society or culture. 

As opposed to an insistence on adherence to a prescribed creed in an exclusive manner, a syncretic tradition allows for individual freedom in matters of beliefs and practices, making for a more inclusive approach.
'Syncretism' has been anathema to both Christianity and Islam.

The so called ‘Roman Catholic Church’ (or ‘Vatican’), for instance, decries ‘syncretism’ openly. There may be some puny attempts within the Christendom to valorise syncretism, such as in 'Unitarian Universalism', which, however, is an outlier within the ‘Christian’ belief system.

Islam execrates 'syncretism' as "shirk" and treats it as apostasy. Attempts at celebrating 'syncretism' in Islam, such as in some Sufi traditions, have historically been treated with an iron hand by Islamists.

Here is a quote on 'syncretism', excerpted from a statement made by Vatican's representative in Moscow in Nov.-Dec 2011.

(Quote) The Catholic Church proposes interreligious dialogue as one of the ways to overcome intolerance and discrimination. On 19 November, during his Apostolic Visit to Benin, the Pope acknowledged that “interreligious dialogue is not easy” and warned that “interreligious dialogue when badly understood leads to muddled thinking or to syncretism. This is not the dialogue which is sought”. (Unquote)

http://www.vatican.va/roman_curia/secretariat_state/2011/documents/rc_seg-st_20111130_mosca_en.html
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Read on the following links about the falsehood and fraud on which Christianity is based.

(a) http://jesusneverexisted.com/

("Jesus Never Existed" by Kenneth Humphreys.)

Jesus – The Imaginary Friend

Christianity was the ultimate product of religious syncretism in the ancient world. Its emergence owed nothing to a holy carpenter. There were many Jesuses but the fable was a cultural construct.

The nativity yarn is a concatenation of nonsense. The genealogies of Jesus, both Matthew's version and Luke's, are pious fiction. Nazareth did not exist in the 1st century AD – the area was a burial ground of rock-cut tombs.

With multiple authors behind the original gospel story it is no surprise that the figure of "Jesus" is a mess of contradictions. Yet the story is so thinly drawn that being a "good Christian" might mean almost anything.

The 12 disciples are as fictitious as their master, invented to legitimise the claims of the early churches. The original Mary was not a virgin, that idea was borrowed from pagan goddesses. The pagan world knew all about virgins getting pregnant by randy gods: The Mythical "Virgin Mother".

Scholars have known all this for more than 200 years but priestcraft is a highly profitable business and finances an industry of deceit to keep the show on the road.

(b) http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jesus_Seminar

http://virtualreligion.net/forum/

The Jesus Seminar was a group of about 150 critical scholars and laymen founded in 1985 by Robert Funk under the auspices of the Westar Institute.The seminar was active in the 1980s and 1990s.

(c) http://www.readthespirit.com/explore/interview-bart-ehrman-on-forged-apocryphal-gospels/

Interview with Bible scholar Bart Ehrman on forged and apocryphal gospels.

Bart D. Ehrman is an American New Testament scholar, currently the James A. Gray Distinguished Professor of Religious Studies at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Ehrman is a leading New Testament scholar, having written and edited over 25 books, including three college textbooks. 

He has also achieved acclaim at the popular level, authoring four New York Times bestsellers. Ehrman's work focuses on textual criticism of the New Testament, the Historical Jesus, and the evolution of early Christianity.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bart_D._Ehrman
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One must also read about the work of French ethnologist Robert Jaulin on 'ethnocide' (which, etymologically, means killing a culture); he explains how 'religion' is deeply implicated in ethnocide and colonization.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robert_Jaulin#The_concept_of_ethnocide

Robert Jaulin (1928-1996) was a French ethnologist. After several journeys to Chad, between 1954 and 1959, among the Sara people, he published in 1967 La Mort Sara (The Sara Death) in which he exposed the various initiation rites through which he had passed himself, and closely analyzed Sara geomancy. 

In La Paix blanche (The White peace, 1970), he redefined the notion of ethnocide in relation to the extermination by the Western world of the Bari culture, located between Venezuela and Colombia. If a genocide designs the physical extermination of a people, an ethnocide refers to the extermination of a culture.

The concept of ethnocide
Robert Jaulin redefined the concept of ethnocide in 1970 with his ground-breaking La paix blanche : introduction à l’ethnocide ("White Peace: Introduction to Ethnocide"). 

This capital work, which remains to be translated into English, gives a detailed account of the ethnocide-in-motion suffered by the Bari, an Indian people living on the border between Venezuela and Colombia, in the second half of the sixties, as witnessed by Robert Jaulin himself.

Whether conflicting or collaborating among themselves, multiple vectors of ethnocide in place (the Catholic Church and other Christian confessions, the Venezuelan and the Colombian armies, the American oil company Colpet, and all the “little colonists” as Jaulin calls them) converged to the relentless disavowal and destruction of Bari’s culture and society.

In Jaulin’s understanding of the notion, it is not the means but the ends that define ethnocide. Accordingly, the ethnocide would be the systematic destruction of the thought and the way of life of people different from those who carry out this enterprise of destruction.

Whereas the genocide assassinates the people in their body, the ethnocide kills them in their spirit.

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Mere mental abstractions, 'economic' and 'political' destroy our lives

Both ‘economic’ and ‘political’ are false categories as they are impossible to be distilled from the wholeness of social relations without causing mass delusion which is the case in the world we inhabit currently – dictated and straitjacketed as it has been by the ‘West’.

The world that we live in looks and feels increasingly “mechanistic, fragmented and decontextualised”, writes Iain McGilchrist, a psychiatrist, writer and former Oxford literary scholar, in his book, ‘The Master and His Emissary: The Divided Brain and the Making of the Western World’.

The book explains the way the so called ‘Western civilization’ shaped up over centuries in terms of hemispheric functioning of the brain – the right hemisphere oriented more towards the wholeness of perspective while left being more detail-oriented. Things seem to have gone horribly wrong for the ‘West’, with the left side progressively dominating the right, according to McGilchrist’s thesis.

Read more about the book on the following link.

A more entertaining way to get a gist of McGilchrist’s thesis would be to view the ‘RSA animate’ of it on the following link.

An essay-review of the book by Arran Gare, an Australian philosopher, is available in PDF on the link below.  

I agree with McGhilchrist that the ‘West’ and its knowledge system have rendered the world “increasingly mechanistic, fragmented and decontextualised”.

I, however, need only common sense – not the left brain-right brain analysis or anything of that sort – to see how the ‘West’ and ‘Western’ hegemony mechanises, fragments and decontextualizes the world and thus turns our experience of it into a nightmare.

This common sense approach consists in looking at the world at two levels – conceptual and empirical – which simply means trying to get an understanding of the categories in which the ‘West’ divides human life and then examining how those categories then shape our lives and our experience.

Let me apply this common sense approach to examining two categories, namely ‘economic’ and ‘political’ both of which have come to dominate the world -- and fragment, decontextualise, mechanise it -- primarily through the ‘Western’ hegemony and ‘Western’ knowledge systems.

The 'common sense' that one needs to be able to see through the two categories of 'economic' and 'political' consists primarily of the following.

(a) An understanding of the language (how it is used and abused and a willingness to uncover the concepts in their pure and original forms)

(b) An elementary understanding of the democratic theory (such as how simple models of direct and representative democracies function)

(c) An eye on the way families, communities and societies actually function

(d) A lot of factual information (news and commentary obtained through the media).

So what do words, 'economic' and 'political', mean?
If one reflects on this question, one would be hard pressed to reach any definitive senses – unless, of course, one invokes a ‘society’ (or ‘social’ – another category used along with the two in question).

The two concepts (as represented by the words, ‘economic’ and ‘political’) have quite obviously been abstracted from ‘social’ (or social relations).

So some aspects of ‘social relations’ have apparently been abstracted from ‘society’ and given the name ‘economic’ -- a purely mental and quite an arbitrary process.

Similarly, some other aspects of relations seems to have been abstracted from ‘society’ and given the name ‘political’ – in another purely mental and arbitrary process.

So while ‘society’ and ‘social’ is a real category – with real existence of individuals and their inter-relationships – ‘economic’ and ‘political’ are only arbitrary (and indeterminable) abstractions from the wholeness that ‘society’ or ‘social’ represents.

In other words, 'economic' and 'political' have no real existence – i.e. they have no existence outside the mind; even within the mind they can’t be conceived without first imagining a society.

Thus, 'economic' and 'political' are empty shells -- created solely to serve the interests of the powerful and filled inevitably by the powerful with whatever meanings that suit them.

No meaning, however, can ever be given to 'economic' and 'political' that cannot simply be represented by some 'social' relation -- because there is absolutely nothing we are talking about here other than human society and social relations.

The unrealness and arbitrariness of 'economic' and 'political' – I believe – are borne out not only by traditional communities, but also by the way a 'modern' family functions.

Do the members of a family compartmentalize some aspects of their relationships into 'economic' and 'political'? Is it possible for us to separate the emotional support a mother provides her children from the material – or 'economic' – one?

Likewise, a small rural/tribal community has absolutely no reason or need to divide and segregate its affairs into the compartments of 'economic' and 'political'.

In fact, there is no evidence in studies of human communities through history that show that such a division is made. A community can do everything, including production and distribution, without ever inventing the word 'economic' and inventing anything resembling an 'economic' theory. 'Economic' (whatever it means) would just be inherent in its overall social relations.

In fact, production and distribution have always been social and familial activities in traditional societies. The community can similarly run itself without ever creating a compartment called 'political'.

Here is an extract from Karl Polanyi's book, 'The Great Transformation'.

"The outstanding discovery of recent historical and anthropological research is that man's economy, as a rule, is submerged in his social relationships. He does not act so as to safeguard his individual interest in the possession of material goods; he acts so as to safeguard his social standing, his social claims, his social assets.

He values material goods only in so far as they serve this end. Neither the process of production nor that of distribution is linked to specific economic interests attached to the possession of goods; but every single step in that process is geared to a number of social interests which eventually ensure that the required step be taken. these interests will be very different in a small hunting or fishing community from those in a vast despotic society, but in either case the economic system will be run on noneconomic motives."

-- Chapter IV, Societies and Economic Systems; http://taodesigns.tripod.com/polyani/polyani44IV.html

The same point can be inferred from 'The Gift', the book written by French philosopher Marcel Mauss in which he explains gift exchanges in traditional communities. (Even a ‘modern’ family continues to function on the lines of gift exchanges.)

One might ask: What are business corporations and States if not 'economic' and 'political', respectively?
It’s true that business corporations have been built on ‘economic’ – an artificial, arbitrary and unreal category – they can never achieve any of their ends without the wholeness of social relations, even while pretending otherwise. The same can be said about the States, which pretend to be 'political'. (They can only pretend because 'political' has no real existence.)

Thus, in the real world, ‘economic’ and ‘political’ are what I would describe as the un-abstract-able abstractions – i.e. it is impossible to create institutions that can even remotely be described as purely ‘economic’ or ‘political’. In other words, it’s impossible to compartmentalize the wholeness of ‘society’ or ‘social relations’ into ‘economic’ and ‘political’.

The pretense, however, continues in the real world – much like the myth of ‘homo economicus’ – with disastrous consequences.

It’s easy to see how these two imposters, ‘economic’ and ‘political’, have been undermining ‘social’, right from family and small communities to the huge nation states.

The ‘Western’ hegemons first created ‘economic’ and ‘political’ theories -- such as neo-classical economics whose ‘empirical’ basis lies in shambles, quite unsurprisingly -- and then turned them into rigid orthodoxies to be imposed on the entire world.

(These hegemons are the same that cobbled together huge States from much smaller human communities, thus reinforcing this unnatural process of abstraction.)

Apply basic democratic theory to any community - or a large nation state- and it’s easy to see why they have no reason to accept anything other than their own collective and common-sensical judgement as to how they should conduct themselves -- rather than the fraudulent ‘economic’ or ‘political’ theories dispensed, a dime a dozen, and imposed on the world by the ‘Western’ hegemons.

What is implied here that in any autonomous community, run on more or less democratic lines, the categories 'economic' and 'political' would have no existence because all decisions would simply be taken 'socially' and 'democratically' - rather than be straitjacketed or distorted by the narrow considerations/theories labelled 'economic' and 'political'.

The larger implication is that ‘economics’ and ‘political science’ have no justification to continue to exist as stand-alone academic disciplines; they need to be abolished and we should only have a holistic ‘social science’ discipline.

Instead of straitjacketing our lives into these two categories, Indians, who are known the world over for their holistic thinking, must question, challenge and demolish the two obviously fraudulent categories of ‘economic’ and ‘political’.

'Abstraction', by the way, is a great tool to understand how the 'West' has long been committing what I call 'conceptual frauds', making for "an increasingly mechanistic, fragmented, decontextualised world".

Arran Gare (whose essay-review of McGilchrist's book is linked above) seems to agree with me.

Witness: "To begin with, science abstracts from the rich diversity of the world a few abstract properties and takes this ‘columbarium of concepts, the graveyard of perceptions’ to be the true reality, portraying nature, as Whitehead put it, as ‘a dull affair, soundless, scentless, colourless; merely the hurrying of material, endlessly, meaninglessly."

(I would simply replace the word "science" in the above para with 'the West'.)

Recapitulation
The following is a recap of what I have said above.

'Society' or 'social' is a real category because it refers to something real, namely human life in all of its relationships with fellow humans.

'Economic' and 'political' are false categories or have no real existence because they are merely abstracted from 'society' or the totality of 'social' relations. Even as abstractions, they have no well defined meanings. 

What ever meanings are assigned to 'economic' and 'political', these two abstractions can, at best, only inhere in - and cannot be separated from - social relations.

While people may be able to be 'educated' to bend their minds to somehow make room for these two grotesque concepts, it is impossible to have some real and distilled existence of 'economic' and 'political' other than their inherence in the wholeness of social relations.

(In other words, there is no such thing in human affairs as purely 'economic' or purely 'political' relation.)

The unnatural, overwhelmingly coercive, concerted and insidiously gradual efforts to give a 'real' and distilled existence to 'economic' and 'political' have resulted in a disaster – namely an increasingly "fragmented, decontextualised and mechanistic" world; it has led to subordination of 'social' to the two false categories of 'economic' and 'political', which translates into growing enslavement of humanity.

(That’s why it’s a problem and a massive one.)

These perverse and fraudulent efforts include creation by the powerful of the cognate academic disciplines of 'political science' and 'economics' and insinuating their self-serving ideologies in being accepted gradually by the public as theories, laws, sciences, etc., by such measures as Nobel Prize for Economic Science.

The societal fightback should include seeing through the false categories – and how mere mental abstractions can be turned into instruments for enslavement of humanity.

It's not difficult to see that when 'society' (or 'social') asserts itself heartily enough, the two ghosts simply disappear – that is, 'economic' and 'political' simply dissolve or become nugatory in any community (imagine a small, close-knit one) that is run, more or less, democratically, simply because communal values like solidarity and emotional bonding become more important than the narrow considerations usually subsumed under the two false categories.

I’ll be posting another piece shortly to put forward my thoughts on 'religion' – another fraudulent and unreal category fabricated by the 'West' and abstracted from 'culture'.

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Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Amul abuses its market power to fleece customers and destroy competition

There is nothing 'co-operative' or even 'social' about Amul or Gujarat Cooperative Milk Marketing Federation; it is now a full-scale money-grubbing corporate bandit out to cheat the consumers of hundreds of crores of rupees by arbitrarily setting prices and destroying competition. 

Delhi-based Subhash Chandra Agrawal, whom I deem one of the best, the most tireless and the most effective citizen activists of India, recently made out a case for merging Delhi Milk Scheme (DMS), a dairy firm controlled by the central government, with Amul or Sudha or Mother Dairy.

Agrawal, who is a living legend in his prolific and effective use of the RTI Act, 2005, builds his case on the basis of revelations that there have been large-scale irregularities and corruption in the functioning of DMS, which has run up an outstanding of more than Rs 23 crore against "booth-holders with no signs of recovery or steps taken to abandon such outlets".

Agrawal cites the use of DMS booths by the licensees to sell products other than those belonging to the dairy firm. He even goes on to say that the "mere existence of Delhi Milk Scheme" after the formation of much bigger Mother Dairy (which also operates in Delhi) by the central government "was in itself wastage of public resources".
   
Having learnt through an RTI request that both Amul and Sudha had called upon the central government to "hand over the loss-making DMS to them", he then makes a case for putting the troubled firm out of its misery in larger public interest.

"It is a sorry state of affairs that Union Agriculture Minister is not taking any decision on long-pending requests of ‘Amul’ and ‘Sudha’ to transfer ‘Delhi Milk Scheme’ for best utilisation of DMS resources for public-good," says Agrawal.

I couldn't stop myself from responding to Agrawal's case mainly because I think it is built on erroneous impressions and on a mistaken view of the real nature of co-operatives and how they have been controlled and manipulated by the State actors.

I believe that Agrawal -- who is quite spot on in taking sides on most issues of public interest -- may have become this time a victim of pernicious propaganda.

"To portray or deliberately push a public enterprise into sickness is now a very well understood tactic of subversion employed by those in authority who want to help themselves or the powerful interests they
represent," I wrote to him.

Like a large number of other public enterprises, DMS is most likely to have been the latest target of this kind of tactic.

Cooperative banks have similarly been decimated -- to clear the field for private corporate banks -- through a combination of stifling regulations and motivated propaganda about their 'inefficiency' and 'corruption'.

"Your concerns may well be perfectly valid and the corruption that you perceive in DMS's functioning may well have a large amount of truth in it, but the situation that you portray is fully consistent with the 'smear and destroy' tactic that has been very effectively applied to not just the co-operative sector, but the entire public sector across the country," I wrote.

Now that the dream of privatization is increasingly proving to be a nightmare in sector after sector (electricity, water, airports, ports, roads, etc.), the people of India are waking up - or so I hope - to this massive fraud.

One needs to remind oneself again that a utility's performance and management could be assessed without regard to the political factor, only if it is substantively independent of political control. But that's hardly the case with DMS and other co-ops, as I understand the situation.

One doesn't need reminding how public-sector airlines have been cannibalized by gangsters like Praful Patel to favour fellow criminals like Vijay Mallya who continues to hold the entire society to ransom through the scam that Kingfisher Airlines is.

How the central government pulled off a huge scam by pushing states to 'unbundle' electricity boards into generation, transmission and distribution companies to be sold off to the cronies of the political bosses and create private monopolies in electricity distribution -- a virtual licence to loot the public.

Within this environment of criminal capitalism that Manmohan Singh inaugurated in 1991 (and even before that), the co-op sector has faced systematic vilification through the corporate media as well as laws and regulations that destroy the autonomy and democratic character of the cooperatives and make them a hostage to the tender mercies of politicians and their capitalist cronies.

(Just registering a co-op has been a nightmare under state laws. Even though some reforms have been attempted through Multi-State Co-operative Societies Acts, I don't think they have allowed co-operatives to breathe freely, let alone flourish.)

There is absolutely no "in case" (as Agrawal suggested) about Amul acting like an anti-social MNC. It has long been acting like a money-grubbing corporate behemoth, leveraging its market power to browbeat competition and arbitrarily set prices to boost its profits at the cost of the larger society.

Amul is now the 'butter monopoly' in many hugely lucrative urban markets across India and it has long been abusing its market position to loot the consumers of hundreds of crores of rupees.

The price of 500 gram Amul butter gets a neat jump by anywhere in the Rs 5-15 range every time one goes to buy it, i.e. on an average interval of 20-25 days. That's my own experience.

For instance, in Bhopal, on January 15, a 500 gram October packing of Amul butter was available at Reliance Fresh at a price of Rs 157 -- which was also the MRP that Mukesh Amabani's retail gang would not sell at any discount because they knew that the price of the fresh packing had been exorbitantly revised -- while December packing was available at a local discount store for Rs 170 (MRP: Rs 172).

Just about nine months ago, the price was no more than Rs 135 or thereabouts.

Amul (Gujarat Cooperative Milk Marketing Federation) has gone berserk in fleecing the consumers and, I think, is a fit case for a complaint to the Competition Commission of India (CCI).

Concentrated market power is invariably bad for both suppliers and consumers. So whether Amul is merged into Mother Diary (as Agarwal suggested) or vice verse, the effect will be as bad as we've already been experiencing with Amul's corporate banditry.

Post Script

(a) I had written to Subhash Chandra Agrawal and this post under the mistaken impression that Delhi Milk Scheme (DMS) was a co-operative. Upon subsequently checking its status, I found that DMS describes itself not as a co-op, but as an arm of the ministry of agriculture of the central government.
I stand corrected.

(b) I was also under the impression that Mother Diary was a co-operative. Upon checking, I found that it's a private limited company wholly owned by National Dairy Development Board (NDDB) which claims itself to be run "fundamentally on co-operative principles and co-operative strategies". So technically, Mother Dairy is a limited company run by a 'co-operative'.

These subsequent discoveries do not in any way change the views I've expressed in this post.

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

The most evil force in human history!

The shrinking of cultural diversity threatens the very survival of humans and other species. What has been causing the death of cultures?

The material I have compiled in this post is startling and unnerving; it first brought me to the view that most people in the world still haven't got round to understanding the real nature of Christianity.

My previous post and the Web links it provided, if read carefully, shows that it’s not Spain, Portugal, Britain or any other European power, but Christianity that’s the original prototype of colonialism and imperialism in the world.

This post seeks to show that Christianity was and continues to be the most evil ethnocidal force in human history. It's a barely veiled vehicle to continuously subvert human cultures, gradually evacuate them of their meanings by implanting into them its 'absolute truth' myth or absolutist ideology.

The gradual hollowing out of a targeted culture and insinuation of Christianity's absolutist ideology into it amounts to its strangulation and mass enslavement of the people, who, in turn, gradually get recruited to this ethnocidal process to be administered to other cultures.

Over the centuries, Christianity has carried out its ethnocidal mission both through brute force and subtly elaborate fraud.

In the last 100 years, Christianity has made conscious use of social sciences, most notably anthropology, to line up weapons of mass destruction aimed at all human cultures.

In its ethnocidal effect, Christianity has contributed to continuous enslaving of humanity to colonial, imperial and capitalist forces. The loss of cultural diversity across the world now threatens the continued survival of human beings and other species.

It's also important to realize how Christianity employed the written word (by developing scripts of the unscripted languages in order to produce Bibles in those languages) in its ethnocidal mission - a process that also explains how and why written word has come to be established as authoritative and hegemonic, at the cost of vocal cultures, histories and knowledge systems.

The following documents shed considerable light on Christianity’s continued role in destroying cultures across the world. Here are some must-read items.

1. ‘Evangelii Nuntiandi, an 'apostolic exhortation of Pope Paul VI', is an absolute must-read and a proof of the diabolical minds at work. This document is available on the following link to the website of the Roman Catholic Church.

http://www.vatican.va/holy_father/paul_vi/apost_exhortations/documents/hf_p-vi_exh_19751208_evangelii-nuntiandi_en.html

The Wikipedia entry of 'Evangelii Nuntiandi' is available on the link below.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evangelii_Nuntiandi

According to Wikipedia, 'Evangelii Nuntiandi' - which means 'Evangelization in the Modern World' - is an apostolic exhortation issued on 8 December 1975 by Pope Paul VI on the theme of Catholic evangelization. Evangelii Nuntiandi is Latin and derives its name from the first words of the text: Evangelii nuntiandistudium nostrae aetatis hominibus.

The exhortation has an introduction followed by seven sections. The introduction articulates evangelization as the Church's primary service.

(‘The effort to proclaim the Gospel to the men of our time.’) The exhortation affirms the role of every Christian (not only ordained ministers, priests, and deacons, or religious, or professional church staff) in spreading the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

The following are some bone-chilling excerpts from Evangelii Nuntiandi.

(a)  "Strata of humanity which are transformed: for the Church it is a question not only of preaching the Gospel in ever wider geographic areas or to ever greater numbers of people, but also of affecting and as it were upsetting, through the power of the Gospel, mankind's criteria of judgment, determining values, points of interest, lines of thought, sources of inspiration and models of life, which are in contrast with the Word of God and the plan of salvation."

“All this could he expressed in the following words: what matters is to evangelize man's culture and cultures (not in a purely decorative way, as it were, by applying a thin veneer, but in a vital way, in depth and right to their very roots), in the wide and rich sense which these terms have in Gaudium et spes, always taking the person as one's starting-point and always coming back to the relationships of people among themselves and with God.

The Gospel, and therefore evangelization, are certainly not identical with culture, and they are independent in regard to all cultures. Nevertheless, the kingdom which the Gospel proclaims is lived by men who are profoundly linked to a culture, and the building up of the kingdom cannot avoid borrowing the elements of human culture or cultures.

Though independent of cultures, the Gospel and evangelization are not necessarily incompatible with them; rather they are capable of permeating them all without becoming subject to any one of them.
The split between the Gospel and culture is without a doubt the drama of our time, just as it was of other times. Therefore every effort must be made to ensure a full evangelization of culture, or more correctly of cultures. They have to be regenerated by an encounter with the Gospel. But this encounter will not take place if the Gospel is not proclaimed."

(b) "The individual Churches, intimately built up not only of people but also of aspirations, of riches and limitations, of ways of praying, of loving, of looking at life and the world, which distinguish this or that human gathering, have the task of assimilating the essence of the Gospel message and of transposing it, without the slightest betrayal of its essential truth, into the language that these particular people understand, then of proclaiming it in this language.

The transposition has to be done with the discernment, seriousness, respect and competence which the matter calls for in the field of liturgical expression, and in the areas of catechesis, theological formulation, secondary ecclesial structures, and ministries.

And the word "language" should be understood here less in the semantic or literary sense than in the sense which one may call anthropological and cultural.

The question is undoubtedly a delicate one. Evangelization loses much of its force and effectiveness if it does not take into consideration the actual people to whom it is addresses, if it does not use their language, their signs and symbols, if it does not answer the questions they ask, and if it does not have an impact on their concrete life.

But on the other hand, evangelization risks losing its power and disappearing altogether if one empties or adulterates its content under the pretext of translating it; if, in other words, one sacrifices this reality and destroys the unity without which there is no universality, out of a wish to adapt a universal reality to a local situation.

Now, only a Church which preserves the awareness of her universality and shows that she is in fact universal is capable of having a message which can be heard by all, regardless of regional frontiers."

(c) "Preaching, the verbal proclamation of a message, is indeed always indispensable. We are well aware that modern man is sated by talk; he is obviously often tired of listening and, what is worse, impervious to words.

We are also aware that many psychologists and sociologists express the view that modern man has passed beyond the civilization of the word, which is now ineffective and useless, and that today he lives in the civilization of the image.

These facts should certainly impel us to employ, for the purpose of transmitting the Gospel message, the modern means which this civilization has produced. Very positive efforts have in fact already been made in this sphere. We cannot but praise them and encourage their further development.

The fatigue produced these days by so much empty talk and the relevance of many other forms of communication must not however diminish the permanent power of the word, or cause a loss of confidence in it. The word remains ever relevant, especially when it is the bearer of the power of God. This is why St. Paul's axiom, "Faith comes from what is heard," also retains its relevance: it is the Word that is heard which leads to belief."

(d) Lay people, whose particular vocation places them in the midst of the world and in charge of the most varied temporal tasks, must for this very reason exercise a very special form of evangelization.
Their primary and immediate task is not to establish and develop the ecclesial community- this is the specific role of the pastors- but to put to use every Christian and evangelical possibility latent but already present and active in the affairs of the world.

Their own field of evangelizing activity is the vast and complicated world of politics, society and economics, but also the world of culture, of the sciences and the arts, of international life, of the mass media. It also includes other realities which are open to evangelization, such as human love, the family, the education of children and adolescents, professional work, suffering."
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2. ‘Inculturation’ is the deceitful stratagem – i.e. an ethnocidal tool – employed by Christian churches for penetrating a culture. This concept is one of the keys to understanding why Christianity is the most subversive ethnocidal force in the world history.

‘Inculturation’ has also been referred to by Christian missionaries as ‘acculturation’, ‘adaptation’, ‘assimilation’ and ‘contextualization’.

The following is the link to a paper entitled, 'The usage of the Inculturation definition in the Church’s documents', which provides another glimpse of the evil and insidious nature of Christianity’s – specifically Roman Catholic Church’s – ethnocidal strategies.


Here is an excerpt from this paper.

(Quote) The preaching of the Gospel must adapt itself to the addressee's circumstances and mentalities but this process is not just an adaptation, it is much more than that, because the Gospel will permeate the addressee’s culture and mentality transforming their judgments, thoughts, lifestyles, etc.; the Gospel has this transforming and purifying force capable of weaving itself in the culture, of becoming the culture.

However, magisterial texts limit themselves only to mentioning this “assimilation and transposing” without fully laying out the goal that will be explained later on: the Gospel becomes culture.(Unquote)
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3. Here is an insight by a Christian missionary into how Christianity has employed anthropology as a weapon of mass destruction.

It’s a link to a paper, entitled ‘Anthropology and Mission: The Incarnational Connection’, written by Darrell L. Whiteman who teaches ‘cultural anthropology’ at E. Stanley Jones School of World Mission and Evangelism at Asbury Seminary in Wilmore, Kentucky. Whiteman worked as a missionary in Central Africa and Melanesia.

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4. The following is a link to a downloadable paper entitled, ‘Exorcising Anthropology's Demons’, by Frederique Apfell-Marglin and Margaret Bruchac.

Published by Multiversity, the paper gives an insight into how Christianity has been implicated in eugenics, human specimen collecting and other outrageous endevours that were performed by European colonialists’ under the discipline of anthropology.


Here is an excerpt from the paper.

(Quote) The anthropological study of Native American Indian people in New England first came into being among explorers, colonists and missionaries who assembled collections of random artifacts, tools, human remains, and botanical and zoological specimens. Judeo-Christian religious traditions and prevailing notions of the time regarded Native American Indian civilizations as substandard precursors to more advanced European civilizations.

Historical writings, political rhetoric, and religious sermons of that era routinely described Indians as a "vanishing race", doomed to extinction, who must be cleared from the way of manifest destiny, whether by assimilation, acculturation, or extinction.

Since Native informants were assumed to be too naive to articulate an intellectual organization of their material culture appropriate for European study, the structure of these collections was shaped by Euro-American aesthetics, values, and interests. Tools were classified by their appearance and apparent use, funerary objects were separated from human remains, and the remains themselves were sorted into individual bones.(Unquote)
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5. What follows is a link to a paper entitled, ‘Language, Discipline, and Power: The Extirpation of Idolatry in Colonial Peru and Indigenous Resistance’, by Priya Shah.


This paper got Shah, a recent graduate of Chapman University (California), the 2013 undergraduate award for the World History Association/Phi Alpha Theta Student Paper Prize.

It is based on research Shah conducted at Archivo Arzobispal de Lima and Biblioteco Nacioal del Peru in Peru about the role of language and linguistic suppression during Spanish colonialism.

Here is an excerpt from the paper.

(Quote) The Spanish conquest of the Americas constituted the confrontation of the Western world and the world of the "other"—a world full of a variety of peoples, cultures, and languages. The year 1492 not only marked the establishment of religious and linguistic hegemony in Spain, but it also marked the "discovery" of the Americas, resulting in a transfer of the notions of linguistic and cultural hegemony to the colonies.

By its very nature, the Spanish presence in the Americas, and the Roman Catholic Church whose mission it supported, made necessary the formation of judicial institutions with the power to stamp out threats to Spanish hegemony in the New World—the Holy Office of the Inquisition and the Extirpation of Idolatry. The Holy Office of the Inquisition in Spanish America had the express purpose of eradicating heretical faiths and behaviors, and ensuring that they did not gain a hold in the colonies.

The Extirpation was created later specifically for indigenous heretics after they were formally removed from the jurisdiction of the Inquisition by Philip II in 1570. The Extirpation of Idolatry sought to "colonize the imaginary"—to colonize not only the physical body of the natives, but also their way of thinking. (Unquote)
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Using Urdu as a tool of Islamic imperialism and India's role as number one Islamist country in the world

BBC presenter Aliya Nazki mispronounces 'Brahmaputra' as 'Bhramaputra' at 10:02 min. in this BBC Urdu newscast called ‘Sairb...