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POLITICAL AND RELIGIOUS CRITIQUES
Indian Muslims or Christians therefore become cultural Hindus? It is
not impossible but it does require making their religions
subordinate to the nation and culture in outer affairs. Above all it
means that they have to be liberal and open minded in their
religious views. They cannot be cultural Hindus if they are
fundamentalists, missionaries or militant in their religion.
Muslims and Christians in India can only become
cultural Hindus if they give up the exclusivism of their beliefs and
recognize that there are many paths to God or Truth, which includes
a Hindu politician honestly tell Muslims or Christians in India that
becoming cultural Hindus will not affect their religious beliefs? To
say that it won't is to deny the fact that Pakistan came into being.
Undoubtedly it will affect their religious beliefs unless they learn
to interpret their religion in a more mystical and Bharatiya manner.
It is probably not going to get
them the approval of strict Islamic sects like the Saudis (Wahabis)
and it may put them at odds with orthodox Christianity, like the
views of the Pope. It
will be most difficult for Indian Muslims in their own community,
which tends to be very orthodox. Of
course Muslims or any religious group in India do not have to become
cultural Hindus in order to live in the country, but only to follow
the laws of the land. Yet even this can affect their religion.