Religious tolerance

This is a million dollar photo, couldn’t help but sharing it. A Muslim mother preparing her son for a competition generally held on Krisha-Janmashtami (translation: Krishna’s birth day), a rare scene, at least for me! I have never seen anything like before.

Muslim mother Krishna son
Religious tolerance

I don’t know what level of answer it provides for the doubts raised on religious intolerance, may not be a lot. May be it is a remote case. But, this does show a straight middle finger to clerics who declare “thou shall not worship Gods of other religion”.

Credits: I don’t know whom to give credit, looks like nobody does! For the time being thanks to Jo for sharing it.

Changing my religion

I am changing my religion, again. I am joining one of those intellectuals who chose to become religious for gaining access to lucrative heaven and avoid horrendous hellfire. I thank all my friends who continuously warned me and predicted “One day you will give up all Godless concepts, and start believing”. Well here I am, please applaud. I found a right religion for me – Pastafarianism.


Before I discuss further on this religion let me apprise you with my background. I’ve been a “devote” atheist my entire life. Well, not exactly “entire”. First few years of my life I was part of a religion which was inherited. Luckily, I was exposed to rational Ideas of Atheism through well-wishers, who I thank till date. Atheism came as good news to me; with this I dint have to follow all the rituals, rules and fears prescribed. It looked very logical and obvious.

<Satire>back on<Satire>

Then came a day a good friend of mine asked a million dollar question. “If there is no God, then who is David Gilmore?” I was speechless! I dint have an answer to it ever since. All my study of Holy Scriptures (Dawkins etc) went total waste. That day I realised there few things even atheism cannot answer, there is certainly something beyond these moral less, bloodthirsty atheism. So I had to look for new religion to follow, and I found this.

Pastafarianism is similar to all the religion we have around. It has a prophet, God, commandments, holy book, holidays and rituals. What’s missing here? If you find anything missing, just let them know they’ll create it for you. (See, it’s that flexible).

Flying Spaghetti Monster (FSM) came into existence (revelation) during dark ages of America when few of the religions try to invade the education system claiming their beliefs to be taught in science classes. Idea was to introduce intelligent design (previously creationism) along with evolution. This would also mean, eventual introduction of Alchemy with Chemistry, Astrology with Astronomy etc. Suddenly FSM came out of Chinese take-away box and instructed prophet on why he is created in first place, and asked him to spread the message.


Touched by His Noodly Appendage - Flying Spaghetti Monster
Touched by His Noodly Appendage – image via wikipedia

Then it all started a new religion. A simple open letter to school board of education has become a global phenomena and a new religion with all mandatory features. To provide an idea on vision of Bob (in turn FSM) I am pasting one of his statements here:

I think we can all look forward to the time when these three theories are given equal time in our science classrooms across the country. And eventually the world; One third of the time for Intelligent design one third of time to Flying Spaghetti monster, and one third of time for the logical conjecture based on overwhelming observable evidence. – Bobby Henderson

Please read more about it in open letter, at least in Wikipedia.

Below, I am trying to list down some major features, to provide you an overall picture.

Name of the religion: Pastafarianism.

Deity: Flying Spaghetti Monster, referred as FSM hereafter. FSM consists of a portion of noodles with meatballs in it. Vegetarians can worship noodles with Veg Manchurian, I am pretty sure FSM won’t mind.

It’s a bizarre deity, but hey, no-one proved the FSM doesn’t look so.

First Prophet:  Bob Henderson. Physics graduate. Please don’t raise your eye-brows here!

First commandment: An open letter to Kansas Education board.

Holy books:  The Gospel of Flying spaghetti monster. The holy book of the church of Flying spaghetti monster

I am the Flying spaghetti Monster, Thou shalt have no other Monster before me (afterwards is OK; just use protection.) The only Monster who deservers capitalisation is me. Other monsters are false monsters, undeserving capitalisation. – Suggestions 1:1

Heaven: Beer Volcano with stripper factory

Hell: Beer Volcano with stripper factory (beer is stale, strippers have std)

Major belief: Global Warming is inversely proportional to the number of pirates in the world. Over the period of time pirates are extinct, increasing the greenhouse gases, thus increasing global warming. For example, if you look at Somalia which has most number of pirates, but minimum amount of per capita greenhouse gasses are emitted.  How true!

relationship between pirates and global temperature
relationship between pirates and global temperature – image via wikipedia

How great were Mughals?

I have lot of doubts on accuracy of history, of India, about all kings – about all kingdoms! Something does not seem right to me, except British Raj! During their time they had press running in the country, which made things bit transparent. Apart from that there were other secret publications run by freedom fighters. With all these records we have a clear idea of bloodthirsty rulers of British East India.

History of Older kingdoms, on the other hand, was mostly based on travelogues of a few visitors and other delicate records. Travellers certainly had the pleasure of King’s hospitality, then, would definitely write something neat on him. Stone encryptions, again, are commissioned by royals. There are also palm leaf scriptures (in Pali, Sanskrit etc) which were written by the elite (educated) crowd of King’s court. Obviously, their education (and living) was funded by king himself. Now why wouldn’t we expect plain old asslicking praise on king and his kingdom? If these go on making history, how accurate is our history?

Talking about history and its accuracy, I would like mention about a post I came across on desicritics by beingCynical. It was about Aurangzeb and his misdeeds, especially his intolerance. This post presents a beautiful argument on this Mughal emperor, and claims that history is inaccurate about his rule. I am pasting a Para from that post:

What drives us to be so judgemental and conclusive without knowing the facts? Is it the bad and wrong history that been taught via the millions of government supplied history books, where truth is far fetched as history is fabricated to support someones ego and wants? The fact is good history is rarely about good guys and bad guys but unfortunately we follow this simplistic logic while going over our history, resulting in putting on a perception pair of glasses while engrossing it. I believe that history should be presented as it is, no biasing, no fabrication or no forced conclusion and the readers should be left to decide the good or the bad for themselves. I was sure that our text books are being pathetically modified, God knows for what and whom, so I always had a fascination for all those controversial & bad characters or so being pictured in books.

This part is 100% true; we certainly have omitted a large portion of history for our convenience (or likings). It could be due to several reasons, most probably to make our history look good, simple “tidy up”.

Anyways, my claim here is that our kings were not great, tolerant and merciful, Continue reading “How great were Mughals?”

MF Husain and his freedom

Maqbool Fida Husain is no longer an Indian, he has accepted Qatari citizenship. It’s not a total surprise considering he was on voluntary exile from Indian Judicial system since 2006. There are few criminal charges against him for having hurt religious sentiments of Indians. For those who are not familiar with this, it’s a typical “freedom of expression” Vs “offending belief system” case. Husain now 94, painted few Hindu deities and Mother India in nude and socially objectionable positions (Indian context). When charged for this, he decided it would be better not to answer to the system and officially absconding since then.

Million dollar question behind this is “what is the boundary of freedom of expression?”, ideally there are none. In an ideal society freedom of expression is that anyone can express anything and nobody gets offended. It possibly could be well accepted if it were done with all intentions answered. But we do not live in ideal society. Here, each group consider themselves to be suppressed and others being appeased. Plenty of moral police are patrolling to maintain this attitude. So, anything could trigger hatred among the groups if the situations are not properly handled. Same is happened here – ‘not properly handled’!

Husain's Bharat mata

Husain claimed that he painted them for the love of those deities; let’s take it is true. Artists have different way to look at things and depict them. He also claimed that there were no intention of offending people, this also can be accepted. But the question followed by this is never answered. Why only deities related to a particular religion is chosen, why not others or his own? In a society where all communities look at each other with suspicion, this question certainly will raise eyebrows. This part seems to be a big hypocrisy on his part. BTW I am not after his apologies, just an explanation.

Right wing on the other hand, can never justify breaking things. They always have right to get offended and protest for it, but not Physical attack.

BTW quoting Khajaraho is never an answer for this; those were carved when these things were probably acceptable in society. Now we live in a society where kissing in public is not OK but pissing is! Society has changed since those temples were carved, so are the rules of every society. Something valid a millennium ago is no longer valid today. This is called “Change”. That’s the reason few things cannot be justified quoting, it “was”, in the same country. This change may not be good (like this one), it can always be protested on, from within the system.

There will be a day, may be in next hundred years, when all these things may not be issues at all. Majority of civilised world would have rejected religions and deities. This discussion would look silly then.[tweetmeme]

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Atheist Barbie

Presenting Atheist Barbie, as an answer to various religious barbies in market, including few in Rev attire and Hijabs. Clever and creative on BlagHag by Jen. Remember Jen? One who also created boobquakes throughout the planet to disprove an Iranian “Intellectual”.[tweetmeme]

Anyways, here is the design, due to be released shortly, I think.

Atheist Barbie
Atheist Barbie

Among all features of this Barbie, I find ‘lunch bag’ as very hilarious. I am breaking it down for the Indian crowd, who may be unaware of the relevance.  This is “South Park” style satire for those who are always surprised of Atheists morals, “If you don’t follow a (read :‘our’) religion, where do you get morals from?”. It’s the same bunch of people (especially Americans) who believe morals were invented on the day “invisible space daddy” presented Moses with tablets of  Ten Commandments. Without this list people (Atheists, etc) tend to kill each other or even eat babies!!!

How many of us had trouble understanding Evolution taught in high school biology? I am sure we did not. Apparently a lot of Americans do!  Parents and teachers in some states in America are not comfortable to teach only science in science class. They claim other theories like Creationism, Intelligent design are as valid as science.

I wasn’t made this confused when I was a kid. I studied in Hindu (later Christian) administered schools. They taught me evolution as the way it is, no teacher ever disputed the theory. Creationism was never a logical way to look at life on earth, in academic circles.

BTW, Flying Spaghetti Monster has come down to earth to resolve all these disputes.

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