© Rati Agnihotri
The woke virus can strike at any time of the year and anywhere. It’s in the air 24 *7. The woke virus has infiltrated all elements of the Bharatiya civil society – educational institutions, cultural organizations, public spaces, workspaces, etc. Hindus being naturally tolerant and progressive are the most vulnerable to this virus. It’s no doubt then that this virus has started eating away at the very core of Hindu Dharma, culture, and civil society.
How do Hindus then shield themselves from the woke virus? It’s the kind of virus that attacks you slowly over the years and gradually destroys your natural immunity against it. Therefore, the task is two-fold, to bolster your natural immunity and creating new mechanisms to fight the virus if it has entered your system.
Here is a checklist of 10 things you can do as a Hindu to vaccinate yourself against the woke virus:
- Maintain a good equation with your family
Single people living in metropolitan cities of Bharat are the favorite target of the woke virus!
It’s easier to brainwash Hindus who have been cut off from their roots and barely interact with family members. Therefore, the first step to vaccinating yourself against this virus is to ALWAYS stay in touch with your family. Speak to them a couple of times a week, if not every day. Simply maintaining channels of communication with your family regularly can save you from a lot of potential trouble and brainwashing.
If you are being constantly harassed by an individual or a group regarding your Hindu identity or being forced to conform to a particular political viewpoint by emotional blackmailing (often invoking the “pitiable” plight of your Muslim and Christian brethren in a Hindu majoritarian state), DO NOT succumb and most importantly, do not hide anything from your family.
2. Try to learn and follow Hindu rituals followed by your family
Let’s be honest. Many young Hindus in the 20th century do not like to sit in “poojas” and know nothing about the religious rituals being followed in their homes on various Hindu festivals.
I myself am guilty of a lot of ignorance. But we must collectively try to change this status quo. You must make an effort to not look away when your family is celebrating various Hindu festivals traditionally and become a part of the whole experience. Trust me, once you stop resisting and drop down your prejudices, you will start to experience a beautiful harmony that resonates within your being.
Take that step to try and remember the specifics of the Hindu rituals followed by your family. What sort of Rangolis does your mother make on occasions like Bhai Dooj and Govardhan Pooja ( Hindu festivals)? What specific rituals does your family follow on Diwali pooja? Try to learn about the background stories behind festivals and auspicious occasions like Holi, Diwali, Navratri, etc.
The next time your mother narrates stories from the Purana on different festivals, don’t look the other way. Make an effort to listen and understand.
3. Keep your eyes and ears open while joining any “cultural institution”
It’s normal to join cultural institutions like a music club, poetry group, literature society, or theatre group when you are on your own in a new city.
These groups give an avenue for creative self-expression while creating a cozy and safe space away from home. Unfortunately, some of these clubs have become vehicles of subtle political propaganda, and are controlled by groups with vested interests. It might sound quite far-fetched, but it’s true. I lived and worked in Delhi for a long time. From my experience, I can say that a lot of such cultural groups in Delhi are controlled by the leftist communist lobby. It’s alright to drop in there once in a while and check out their events. But if you become too closely involved, you will be expected to adhere to their political ideology (anti-Modi, anti-Hindutva majoritarianism, and all that), and you will be expected to get involved in all those “protests” happening.
I am not saying that all cultural clubs would be like that. But some of them will be politically motivated and will be used by leftist lobbies as tools for propaganda. One cannot deny that sadly, a large part of cultural and literary machinery of India is still controlled by the leftists.
So you must keep your eyes and ears open while joining any of these hobby groups and cultural institutions. Most importantly, you must realize that no genuine cultural organization would force you to adhere to a particular political ideology or shame you for having other kinds of political views. If they are doing that, it’s time for you to run away as far as you can!
4. Be conscious of efforts at subtle proselytization.
Proselytization is becoming quite common in Bharatiya cities – be it political proselytization or religious proselytization.
Outright attempts at converting your religious or political beliefs are easy to figure out, but subtle proselytization is harder to detect. It often involves a long-drawn process aimed at slowly poisoning the mind of an individual against their religion and community and making them believe a far better alternative exists.
There are many ways to spot subtle proselytization. Stay away from people who seem to be overzealous about their religion and seem to seize every opportunity available to wax eloquently on its teachings and precepts. They are not asking you to convert but if you are over-benevolent, they will keep on pushing the boundaries. First, it will be sermonizing, and then they will urge you to visit their places of worship, and then slowly urge you to denounce the “derogatory” rituals associated with Hindu Dharma. The web will be laid, and you’ll be caught in it before you even realize it.
Many such people can be your very good friends in the private domain. But they will be so intolerant that once you say or do something that’s against their religious or political viewpoint, they will turn your enemy. It’s sad but true. So it’s needed that you identify such people from the outset and create healthy boundaries.
5. Start being more vocal about your love for Hindu Dharma
The reason Hindus become easy targets for anti-Hindu propaganda and brainwashing is because they don’t have enough pride in their religion.
Even if they do, they feel religious identity is strongly a matter of the private sphere and feel conscious about talking about religion in public.
We need to change that. Hindus need to show the world that they are unapologetically Hindu and are in love with Hindu Dharma. It doesn’t have to border on the aggressive muscle flexing of Abrahamic religions. Far from it. But we shouldn’t shy away from talking about the good and progressive aspects of Hindu Dharma. We should also learn to defend our Dharma against unwanted attacks and trolls.
You could show your love for Hindu Dharma through the smallest of gestures like sharing posts related to all Hindu festivals and auspicious occasions on social media. It could involve being more active in the local community and teaching kids about the basics of Hindu Dharma and the essence of Hindu epics like Ramayana and Mahabharata.
Once we start expressing our love and admiration for Hindu Dharma more openly in the public domain, the attacks and the propaganda will invariably come down.
6. Stop being conscious of what others think of your views
Hindus unfortunately are highly conscious about what others think of their views. They just want to do well in life, be politically correct, and avoid controversies.
This tendency to avoid controversy has landed our Dharma in the kind of crisis we are witnessing today.
Hindus of the 21st century need to be assertive about their Dharma and the need to stop succumbing to the invisible burden of 24*7 political correctness.
The biggest fear of us educated Hindus is that if we speak too much about our religion or the issues affecting Hindus, we will be thought of as non-progressive, non-secular, and narrow-minded. So many super-educated Muslims and Christians are forever raising their voices about issues affecting their religion. We do not consider them bigoted. On the contrary, we celebrate these voices. Then, how come Hindus become narrow-minded by talking about Hindu issues?
It is not a trap created by the left liberals, but rather our self-created complexes and the woke lobby is just cashing in on our own fears and vulnerabilities.
7. Stop looking at Hindu activism suspiciously!
It is another misconception created by the woke lobby.
Many educated Hindus seriously think RSS is a militant organization and that all Hindu activism is violent or bordering on violence.
The woke lobby has created such a narrative around Hindu activism that so many Hindus have gotten brainwashed. They close their eyes on hearing anything about Hindu activism, and that’s why they know nothing about issues affecting Hindus in India or other countries like Pakistan and Bangladesh where Hindu minorities are brutally tortured, converted, and even murdered.
Many educated Hindus would happily participate in all sorts of causes and protests including the Farmers’ Agitation, anti CAA protests but not a single Hindu would turn up for a protest organized for Hindu issues, let alone organizing it.
This perception needs to change. Hindus need to stop looking at Hindu activism suspiciously, do some credible research, and find out the reality of Hindu activism.
8. Stop being ashamed of Hindu religious symbols
It’s a matter of fact well known that the woke virus stays away from people who proudly display the symbols of Hindu Dharma!
It’s the sure-shot route to vaccinating yourself against this virus. Be it a Tilak on your forehead or a Kalava on your wrist, or a Janeu(in case of men), do not be afraid of sporting the symbols of Hindu Dharma.
The anti-Hindu lobby has created so much propaganda regarding the Swastika, for example, associated it with Nazi supremacy and what not that many Hindus have started looking at such an auspicious Hindu symbol suspiciously. The Swastika is an integral part of Hindu iconography. Do not get carried away by woke propaganda, and stop being ashamed of your own Dharmic heritage.
9. Practice the art of logical argumentation
The woke lobby is devoid of logic.
The best way to vaccinate yourself against the woke virus is by excelling in the art and science of arguing logically.
The left-liberal cabal mostly tries to appeal to people’s emotions by projecting people and communities as victims and shaming other parties. Their entire discourse is based on casting people into simplistic binaries of “oppressor” and “oppressed” and shaming those who do not adhere to their viewpoint.
The biggest defense against the woke virus is a scientific and rational mindset. You would then start realizing how illogical their arguments and appeals are (arguments if they can be called at all).
One of the all-time favourite left-liberal criticisms of India’s scientific development, for example is, we should be ashamed of ourselves that there is so much poverty around, but still, we are wasting money on scientific expeditions like Chandrayaan, etc. Now if you are a highly emotional person with weak logic, you can easily fall into the trap of this sort of fallacy. But anyone with a decently rational bent of mind would see the stupidity of such an argument.
10. Do not succumb to peer pressure
Many Hindus end up becoming a part of woke circles simply due to peer pressure.
The urge to be cool forces us to be a part of activities and clubs without giving it much thought. In the 21st century, it’s cool to be progressive, rebellious, and anti-establishment. In an ideal world, these qualities would indeed be super cool. But in a world controlled by vested interests and divisive ideologies, these categories are appropriated and manipulated for spreading propaganda and hatred against specific groups and communities.
Hindus, therefore, need to stop succumbing to this pressure of being cool and should get involved in something after rationally analyzing its motivations and repercussions.
Disclaimer: The article is first published in the online News Portal Hindu Post. You can find the original link here .
Image Credits: Opindia.com