Why are Liberals so illiberal, so irrational? – By Vivek Agnihotri


“Why are Indian Liberals so illiberal, so irrational”, a young student asked me recently at University of North Carolina, one of the world’s best universities.

He asked me in the context of intense opposition to my speech at the university by the Liberals. Obviously, the opposition to the content of any speech makes logical sense but opposing before I uttered a word doesn’t make any kind of sense. But I am used to it. They opposed my film without seeing it. Tried to rubbish my book before even the first copy came out.  This opposition to my voice has come from only those who write ‘Liberal’ in their DPs or call others regressive.

“If they are not liberal, either they are Leftists or they are not Indian”, I replied. I didn’t want to get into any controversy at this premium university with a strong Leftist/Liberalfoothold, so avoided this complex it with some American humor.

“But liberalism started in Europe. What have Indians got to do with it?”

I am a strong advocate of liberalism and I believe it’s the liberal ideas of Hindu civilization that help us discover the unknown, without which the world will stagnate. It is this desire of mankind to go beyond his potential to discover the world – the Brahmaan (universe) in order to discover the supreme truth. Going by Hindu philosophy, Brahma created man with the sole purpose of discovering this eternal truth. Discovering supreme truth is man’s dharma and becoming one with that truth is his sole purpose (Moksha). This is the ultimate liberation. The paths to discover the ultimate truth may be many and the man is free to choose any path of his liking to reach this destination. Thus, Brahma liberated the man from any one dogma, diktat, book, ritual or path. This, by itself, is the most liberating idea. I believe in this fundamental equation between the universe and myself – TatvamAsi – thou art that. The whole is me and I am the whole. What quantum physics is discovering now, was found in the world’s first texts of Hindu civilization.We called it Sanatan

We are gifted with ‘free will’. This‘free will’ is the whole. The Sanatan. What differentiates the man from animal (and now Artificial Intelligence) is this stubborn free will. By empowering and refining this free will one can go beyond what is visible and what exists. With free will one can find the ‘supra-divine’. Hindu civilization has always recognized the power of free will and, therefore, never bound its follower in any one idea. The diversity of ideas is the essence of Hindu Civilization. Each individual is seeking the supra-divine in his/her own way with the help of his/her own methods and rituals. It’s our diversity which the invaders couldn’t understand and failed to convert our deep belief in ‘free will’ despite being armed with deadly weapons. In fact, the Mohammedan rulers became more like Hindus and after some coercing and failing, even Britishersstopped converting us forcefully.

It’s ironical that many eons years later, In India, Marx and Mao emerged as new age Brahmas. With a rigid doctrine, one book and one diktat. A doctrine which is built on hating and fighting others. These doctrines or ‘isms’ are sometimes utopian, sometimes dogmatic. But never liberal. Ironically, the people who started worshipping Marx or Lenin or Mao, soon started calling themselves liberalsBut celebrated everything illiberal. When Nehru championed rigid model of communist Soviet, they celebrated. When Indira Gandhi centralized every institution, they celebrated. When she murdered emergency, they celebrated. When Indira Gandhi declared on the floors of parliament that ‘Corruption is unstoppable’, they called her Mother India. When Indira Gandhi used alien concept like Secularism as political tool,to create vote banks, they celebrated. When thosuands of Sikhs were massacred, they maintained a stoic silence. When Rajiv Gandhi was caught deep in Bofors scandal, they protected him. When VP Singh raised myopic Mandal issue and destroyed India forever, they kept quiet. When Sonia Gandhi was pushed by the morally bankrupt sycophants for the PM’s post, they didn’t oppose. Instead, they conspired to evolve a system where a puppet could be staged as the PM while the real power remained with Sonia Gandhi. They brokered deals, negotiated power and controlled the mainstream narrative Throughout the corrupt regime of Sonia Gandhi’s Congress, they never questioned her. When Narendra Modi came to power with unprecedented support of rooted people, liberals labelled his supporters as regressive Sanghis and Bhakts. What they forgot that this Sanghi is rooted in Indian philosophy of liberation. His logic of life and beyond is far more liberal than these One-Idol-One-Book-One-Doctrine liberals of India. While most of the cultures could discover only seven basic rasa, we added two more rasa – Vatsalya Rasa (motherhood) and Bhakti Rasa (oneness) – the highest forms of rasa. When the Mohamedan invaders were forecefully converting poor peasents and destroying temples. It was Bhakti movement that saved this civilization.

Problem with the so called liberals of India is that they have abandoned all liberal ideas of our culture and latched on to colonial ideas like secularism – a political tool to spread themselves. A society that has evolved with central belief of ‘VasudevKutumbkam’ doesn’t need narrow, political theme of secularism. Indic ideas of democracy, family, society, feminism, Dharma and ‘I-Am-Ok-You-Are-Ok’ attitude are so comprehensive and progressive that we don’t need to look anywhere else. One can’t be slave to a colonial mindset or an ‘either/or western template’ and call himself liberal.  They are liberal according to the ‘western template’, sadly, they live in India and when in conflict with organically developed and culturally rooted liberal ideas, they look illiberal and irrational.

What one needs to understand is that when all civilizations perished or converted to become either Christian, Islamic, communist or dictatorship states, it’s only Hindu civilization that survived. (so did China but it’s a closed civilization). Despite invasions, colonization, looting and grave destruction, we survived. From the abyss of decline we rose above and today we are a force to reckon with. It’s my firm conviction that it’s because of our liberated minds we are such an inspiring story of survival and success. While in rest of the world liberalism is a question, only in India it’s the answer.

Donate to I Am Buddha Foundation

Leave a Reply

Be the first Buddha to read our articles!