Saturday, November 26, 2022

Rabindranath Tagore: On Hinduism, Semitic Religions, and Communism

Tagore in 1925

“There are two religions on earth, which have distinct enmity against all other religions. These two are Christianity and Islam. They are not just satisfied with observing their own religions, but are determined to destroy all other religions. That’s why the only way to make peace with them is to embrace their religions.” ~ Rabindranath Tagore (Original works of Rabindranath, Vol. 24, page 375)

Tagore believed that universalism preached by Hinduism was the only solution to the divisive and destructive influences of the Semitic religions. He exhorted the Hindus to hold on to their moral and religious values. In his article “Aatmaparichapa,” published in his 1916 book Parichaya, he compared the Semitic religions to Bolshevism (communism) which, he warned, was spreading very fast in the country. He saw communism as a modern sequel to the Semitic religious doctrine. He wrote:

“When two-three different religions claim that only their own religions are true and all other religions are false, their religions are only ways to Heaven, conflicts cannot be avoided. Thus, fundamentalism tries to abolish all other religions. This is called Bolshevism in religion. Only the path shown by Hinduism can relieve the world from this meanness.”

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