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Social transformation through religion
To enable a social transformation, government, judiciary and police have their severe limitations. One resource which has the potential but not tapped for positive outcomes needs exploitation. The election time when parties / people are talking about the development, is the appropriate time to involve our religious teachers.

With Narender Modi successfully shifting the national agenda from religion/caste/communal/narrow divisive loyalties to development and the nation first, things should be looking up for good. Religion in India has massive control over all Indians daily lives, thought process, leanings and outlook towards life. The religious teachers in Sikh and Islam have a greater hold than the others and most would agree with this statement.

The other day I was privy to a very tragic but interesting real life incident. A young charming MBA girl from upper middle class back ground working abroad in a MNC and earning good money found a her prince charming. The boy was from with in the community, matching status and salary and pleasing personality. Typical son-in-law any father would wish. This person had everything and abundance of it.

They got married and the tragedy struck. The prince was suffering from very serious medical problems and he should have not got married till the problems were sorted out, however the society's taunts forced this alliance. Unfortunately in spite of the fact that the match maker was extremely well known to both sides, this problem had not been shared.

Two years of married life was marred with mental torture and abuse of the charming princess. Since she was posted abroad she was unwilling to share the agony with the parents for obvious reasons. It was by default that the girl broke down and confided and hell broke loose. Only child, simple God fearing and this is what destiny had in store. Parents went into deep depression for quite sometimes till the father took a stand of annulling the relationship much against the daughters wish (she thought she could probably mange).

The marriage was annulled without any acrimony and it was kind courtesy the local head priest of the sect before getting formal judicial stamp. It was amazingly clean, logical and extremely fair.

This set me thinking about the potential of this learned body to facilitate social transformation, since they are the custodians of faith notwithstanding some aberrations. All religions have adverse traditions/rituals having creped in over a period of time. In fact older the religion more is the ritualism/tokenism/misrepresentation of the truth.

Hinduism leads with maximal possible cleansing potential. Caste based discrimination, widow remarriage, illiterate and greedy pujaris; excessive ritualism, knowledge in a language not understood by most and absence of unifying common ground. The new age religious leaders being wealthy, educated, media friendly, learned and capable of harmonising the essence of science and religion have mass following cum belief which is reasonably strong. The other religions have a better control because there is little diversity of Hinduism in them. Thus less fragmentation and more cohesion.

The most difficult and challenging task would be for Hindus to come together and come to an acceptable common programme. This must be accomplished without tinkering with the basic fundamentals.

The issue like eradication of social evils could be the starting point. Dowry, female foeticide, duty, honesty, values, caste discrimination, intoxicant (gutka/paan/tobacco) drugs menace, helping the needy; women/girl safety; corruption, harmony, tolerance are some of the burning issues which can be tackled by the society and not legislature or police or the English electronic media.

For India to evolve as a progressive, tolerant, plural. multi religious society this may be a good starting point and one has never seen a national upsurge towards development amongst all that is India. Religious leaders taking lead would be transformation of great magnitude.

Editorial NOTE: This article is categorized under Opinion Section. The views expressed in this article are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of In case you have a opposing view, please click here to share the same in the comments section.
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