Decolonising the Indian Mind

Part2 gives you corresponding Indian thought. 

1. Instead of Rights what we need is Selfless action. Let each one of us endeavor to do some good for the nation. It could be creating international brands, donating money for education & health or sharing good things about India. Ask not what India does for you but what you do for India.

2. Our country must be renamed as Bharat (land of knowledge) because knowledge about the Self is as intrinsic to us as fish is to water. India is increasingly being perceived as a Knowledge country. We could be called the world’s Knowledge capital the day we develop an equivalent of Microsoft’s Windows or an Agni missile with a range of 5,000 kms plus and when India is amongst the world’s top three education / healthcare destinations.  

3. The teaching of a simplified form of Sanskrit must be encouraged through incentives to students. This would have numerous benefits. One, Indians living in North, West & East would be able to relate to South Indian languages since all of them are influenced by Sanskrit. Two, it would enable Indians to understand Thai / Indonesian Basaha which have a number of Sanskrit words.

Some of you might ask, why learn Sanskrit? “The report of the Sanskrit Commission (set up by the Government of India) which was submitted in 1957 speaks eloquently about the importance of Sanskrit. page 71 of the report mentions that Sanskrit is one of the greatest languages of the world and it is a classical language par excellence not only of India but of a good part of Asia too. At page 73 the report states that the Indian people and the Indian civilization were born, so as to say, in the lap of Sanskrit and it went hand in hand with the historical development of the Indian people, and gave the noblest expression to their mind & culture which has come down to our day as an inheritance of priceless order for India and for the entire world” (Supreme Court judgment of 4/10/1994). The report further states on page 74 about the great mental & spiritual link of Sanskrit and of it being the elder sister of Greek & Latin, and cousin of English, Russian & French. (Secularism: Supreme Judiciary vs. Hindu Baiters by Dina Nath Mishra appeared in Dialogue vol 5 no 2, October to December 2003).

A couple of years ago The Times of India carried an interview with Dr Raja Ramana, a distinguished nuclear scientist & ex-head of BARC. He was asked whether he had any regrets in life. He said, ‘Yes, I did not learn Sanskrit’.

Read The case for Sanskrit as India's national language 

4. Live by Dharma
At the Global Dharma Conference in July 2003 President Kalam said, “Recently, I heard a hymn in the divine campus which I would like to share with you. The name of the hymn is 'Peace in the World':  

Where there is righteousness in the heart
There is a beauty in the character.
When there is beauty in the character,
There is harmony in the home.
When there is harmony in the home.
There is a order in the nation.
When there is order in the nation,
There is peace in the world.

Friends, we can see a beautiful connectivity between heart,
character, nation and the world. How to inject righteousness in the
human heart? This is indeed the purpose of human creation –DIVINITY".  

Swami Rama wrote, “Sri Krishna explains to Arjuna that one’s duty is of paramount importance, for it is the means to fulfill his purpose of life. That which supports the fulfillment of one’s duty is called Dharma. Dharma is not comparable to religion; it encompasses all the dimensions of life both within and without. It refers to duties done harmoniously, skillfully, selflessly and lovingly. It supports one in fulfilling the purpose of life and helps one to relate to others and to society in a harmonious way”. (Swami Rama is founder of the Himalayan International Institute. Quote is explanation to verse 31 and 32 of chapter 2 in his book "The Perennial Psychology of the Bhagavad Gita pg 70”).  

5. Rename Hinduism as Sanatana Dharma.
What is Sanatana Dharma? Pandit Vamdava Shastri wrote “It is the Eternal or Universal Dharma. Dharma means universal law, the fundamental principles behind this marvelous universe like the Law of Karma. Sanatana means perennial, referring to eternal truth that manifests in ever-new names and forms. Hinduism is the oldest religion in the world because it is based on the eternal origins of creation. But it is also the newest religion in the world because it adjusts to new names and forms to every generation and looks up to living teachers and not old books, as its final authority”. (Hinduism and the Clash of Civilizations published by Voice of India).  

So also secularism needs to be defined to mean equal respect for all religions. Government laws and subsidy should not be on the basis of religion.

6. Know the importance Vikram Samvat calendar.
“In addition to the natural reckoning of days, months, seasons, and the year, a continuously running era is required for the recording of dates. The era currently popular in the Indian calendar is the Vikram Era, or Vikram Samvat. The Vikram Era is ascribed to King Vikram, also known as Vikramaditya. It is generally accepted that Vikramaditya was born into the Gardabhilla royal family and grew up to be a noble and illustrious ruler of the Malwa region, its capital being the picturesque city of Ujjain. Inscriptions from 1st century BCE confirm that 'Malav' people existed at that time, and that they had a brave leader named 'Vikram'. So brave was this Vikram, that the name has since become synonymous with bravery.

Earlier, ancestors of the Malav tribe had suffered grave defeats at the hands of invading Greeks. This had forced the tribe to push down to Malwa, where they settled and consolidated their hold. After Vikram succeeded the throne, he repulsed the Greek advance and established peace and prosperity over Malwa. it was from that particular year, 57 BCE, that he began his own era – Vikram Samvat. Vikram was respected as a very noble king, serving and giving refuge to all his subjects like his own progeny. He regularly disguised himself as a commoner and mingled with village-folk, in order to learn of their afflictions and thus serve them better”. Source click here

7. Comparative meaning of words in West & East – as explained by Swami Rama in his book “Perennial Psychology of the Bhagavad Gita”.





Is a compound of two words: philo & sophia meaning, “love for knowledge”.

Subject matter of eastern philosophy leads the student through a systematic way of directly experiencing the truth of existence & the height of Self-realization.


Equated with punishment, breaking of rules produces stress. Is forced on a person.

It is a gradual but steady way of self-training that makes the student aware of the higher dimensions of life. Without discipline, the dissipated energy of the mind and the unruly behavior of the senses cannot be brought under control.


The belief in sin creates guilt, and guilt creates fear of punishment.

Yoga science says that which is called sin is actually a behavior that creates obstacles for oneself, and that behavior can be modified. E.g. If I fail to act lovingly I am not committing a sin but am constructing a barrier to my realization of my unity with all. That is the punishment & by changing my behavior my suffering is dissolved.

4. Yagna

Meaning sacrifice used in a distorted manner: killing of an animal to please God or because the West believes the ego to be the center of knowledge, the idea of sacrifice is frightening, for the ego is insecure and does not want to give up anything that it possess.

Means to give away one’s rights for the sake of others, willingly and happily. The essence of sacrifice is giving selflessly. It also means doing every work as if it were an offering to Ishwar.  

5. Destiny

To mean Kismet or fate. Promotes fatalistic behavior, we cannot change our destiny.

Every person makes his own destiny. Your present is a result of karmas or actions in this & previous births..

Another word i.e. left undefined is Minority. Am sure there are many more examples. This article focuses on the major ones.

Read Why India must have no place for a religious minority 

We end with these inspirational words of Maharishi Aurobindo who wrote: “Our first necessity, if India is to survive and do her appointed work in the world, is that the youth of India should learn to think, - to think on all subjects, to think independently, fruitfully, going to the heart of things, not stopped by their surface, free of prejudgments, shearing sophism and prejudice asunder as with a sharp sword, smiting down obscurantism of all kinds as with the mace of Bhima…”. (India’s Rebirth by Sri Aurobindo).  

Also read
1. Why post-independent India is at odds with its true nature 
2. Gandhi, Ahimsa and Christianity 
3. The incredible women of Bharat 
4. India's Rebirth by Maharshi Aurobindo 

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