24 Feb 2014

Objectionable Extracts from Wendy Doniger's book, Hindus: An Alternative History – Bireshwar Choudhury

Wendy Doniger, who of late is very much in the news, is the intellectual grandmother of Peter Heehs. Wendy Doniger begat Jeffrey Kripal, who did his “research” on Sri Ramakrishna for his P.H.D. dissertation under her guidance at the University of Chicago. Jeffrey Kripal wrote the blurb on the back of the Lives of Sri Aurobindo (2008) by Peter Heehs, who gave a soft copy of his book to his “venerable guide” prior to its publication – Kripal’s book on Esalen (2007) contains references to the MS of the Lives. Esalen is an institution founded by Michael Murphy, who is more or less in the same business of misinterpreting spirituality. He in fact paid for the trips of both Richard Hartz and Peter Heehs to America in order to attend a conference in California. This is the lineage of the so-called scholarship that we are presently dealing with, and of which most of the disciples, followers and intellectual admirers of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother are totally unaware. Now that Wendy Doniger, the grandmother of falsehood (she has a veritable brood of children who have followed the path of outright denigration and erotic misinterpretation of Hinduism) has been exposed and her publisher Penguin Books has capitulated to a humble headmaster (hats off for Dinanath Batra, the octogenarian hero and his courageous lawyer Monica Arora), it is time that the followers of Sri Aurobindo  rethink and take stock of the situation at the Ashram: Why did the Managing Trustee of the Ashram encourage Peter Heehs in his denigration of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother? Why did Manoj Das, the award winning writer justify this incomprehensible action of the Managing Trustee, who will certainly go down in history as perhaps the only Trustee who has gone against the interest of the spiritual institution he was entrusted with?

Meanwhile, it is time to rejoice a great victory for all those who stand for the spiritual values embodied in Hinduism. We publish below a few objectionable extracts from Wendy Doniger’s book, The Hindus: An Alternative History in order to give the readers an idea of her so-called scholarship and the academic tag attached to her erotic misinterpretations of the sacred symbols of India. The extracts along with critical comments on them are part of an online petition that was circulated for canvassing against her book. The petition at one point of time fetched 11009 signatures as opposed to the meagre 3500 claimed by a group of leftist scholars fighting for her cause. The full petition, which also has a list of factual errors, can be accessed at:
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16 Feb 2014

The Literary and Literal Manoj Das ― by Sricharan Singh

Has Manoj Das any occult or spiritual vision of these forces or are these only the products of his fertile literary brain? In this context, the remark of the respected Odiya sadhak late Babaji Sri Ramakrishna Das, who had a profound occult vision, is worth mentioning. About 35 years ago, when a sadhak went for some work to Babaji’s room near the Ashram, Babaji asked him, “Have you seen who has come to my room just now?” The sadhak replied, “Yes, I saw Manoj babu was going out.” Then Babaji told him, “When that person entered my room, I saw a dark force entering my room.” The sadhak was astonished. But after 35 years he found out how true was Babaji’s vision! [extract, read full article below]
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9 Feb 2014

Analysis of the Preface of P. Heehs’ The Lives of Sri Aurobindo, CUP, 2008 (Part 4) ― A Zombified Disciple

Murders in the Land of the Na├»ve – 6

Heehs wrote Sri Aurobindo: A Brief Biography, OUP, 1989 (Bio-1), The Lives of Sri Aurobindo, CUP, 2008, (Bio-2) and much else in the same vein.[1] I analyse Bio-1 and 2 and their prefaces using his device critical openness of a seeker of truth and his diktat: Biographers must take their documents as they find them…, paying as much attention to what is written by the subject’s enemies as by his friends, not giving special treatment even to the subject’s own version of events. Accounts by the subject have exceptional value, but they need to be compared against other narrative accounts, more important, against documents that do not reflect a particular point of view.
All text in Italics is from Bio-1, Bio-2 and their prefaces; all in Roman is mine. I have often interspersed my comments in Roman within Marcher’s text which is always in italics.
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2 Feb 2014

Dr. Kartikeshwar Patra (ex-M.P. from Balasore) replies to Prof. Manoj Das

(Translation of the Original in Odiya)

Aum Sri Ma

Respected Sir,                                                            20.12.2013

My regards. After receiving your letter and speaking to you on the phone, I felt inspired to reply to you. Therefore I thought that first I needed to let you know about a few things. Often one does not know what the truth is. So one does not hesitate to call the truth a lie because one tells lies out of fear of society and one even resorts to lies in the name of God. As Bacon says “Lie faceth God, shrinketh from mankind”. Your letter is coloured with lies in order to shake my conviction. Therefore, once again I appeal to you, please tell me – those who are revengeful towards others, are they real sadhaks? You have not answered this question. Why have they refused to put me up in the Ashram guest-houses? This too you have not answered. What offence have I committed before the trustees?

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Prof. Manoj Das writes to Dr. Kartikeswar Patra ― ex-M.P. from Balasore

(Translation of the Original in Odiya)

Dear Shriman Kartikeshwar-babu,                     13.11.2013

That day I was very pleased to have spoken to you over the phone. Of all our conversations that day the song that you sang without preparation struck in my ears and rang for a long time. Most political figures usually lose interest in such subtle and refined pursuits. But you are an exception, therefore my congratulations.

This is a personal letter. I leave for Goa tomorrow in the morning and will be back on the 16th. I am writing a short note in case of any delay. I have no interest in arguing with anyone. I have looked upon you with affection since your student days.
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