Socrates, the greatest of all oral communicators, was freaking out over “the very latest communications technology, written language based on an alphabet” though as Powers concedes, “writing wasn’t completely new”. Socrates believed that scrolls would erode thought by permitting people to forget what they had learned because they’d be able to look things up, that “they wouldn’t feel the need to ‘remember it from the inside, completely on their own.’ ” Worse, writing wouldn’t “allow ideas to flow freely and change in real time, the way they do in the mind during oral exchange.” (via Born to Check Mail By LAURIE WINER, Published: July 9, 2010, Book Review – Hamlet’s Blackberry – By William Powers – NYTimes.com).
Indian yogis in Athens
Socrates was a great believer in oral teaching. The shruti tradition in India was alive before Socrates was born. Was that a coincidence? After all, Valmiki committed to palm leaves pre-existing history. Similarly, Krishna Dwaipayan Vyasa wrote the pre-existing history of Mahabharata!
Mentioned by Aristoxenus and recalled by Eusebius, Socrates’ encounter with an Indian yogi however, is not well-known. Mentions of the Athenian encounter between the Indian yogi and Socrates are a rarity in modern history. Socrates was accused of
disrespect for the gods whom the state recognizes, of introducing new divinities and of corrupting the young
Socrates was condemned to death by poison. Compare this to Indian ethics which forbid violence against the intellectual class – the Indian brahmins, priests, and rishis.
What were the alien gods that Socrates was promoting? What was it that Socrates was teaching that ‘corrupted the Greek youth’. The alien gods and teachings that Socrates was accused of promoting – were these from India?
Why would the ancient Greeks be anti-Indian?
Pliny’s ‘moralizing verdict on the Roman trade with India,’ borders on being an anti-India polemic. Pliny’s India writing’s remain a significant academic memory even today.
Why the anti-Indian polemic?
Indic ideas that threatened the world
Indian teachers and intellectuals were sent to all corners of the world. The spread of Buddhism in Asia is well-chronicled. In 2nd century AD, Origen, a Christian pioneer, attributed the spread of Christianity “The island (Britain) has long been predisposed to it (Christianity) through the doctrines of the Druids and Buddhists, who had already inculcated the doctrine of the unity of the Godhead”
Mani, the Buddhist teacher, and his adherents, known to Christians as Manicheans were the nightmare for Christianity till the 15th century, feared by the Vatican for a 1200 years. Vatican killed, burnt and quartered all those who displayed any leaning towards Manichean-ism.
St.Augustine was canonised for his conversion from Manichean to Christianity. When Mani called for overthrow of slavery, the Vatican at the Council of Gangra, re-affirmed its faith in slavery. Islamic invaders searched and destroyed statues or boet /buta (meaning statues of Buddha?).
The reason behind this ‘persecution’?
Indian economic system in 500 BC ensured property rights for all – something that Europe could achieve only in the 19th century. Property, wealth and power concentrations in Greece would be threatened by Indic thought.
Travelling salesmen stop travelling
From 5th century we increasingly see more stories of visits to India. Visits by Indian rishis begin to dry up. The last Indo-Buddhist seems to be Mani.
1000 years after Mani’s death, the Vatican was afraid of his his ‘hold’ over the European populations.
“Cartoons in Australia are normally done by people who are either clever or witty and this one’s neither,” the secretary of Victoria’s Police Association, Greg Davies, told reporters.
Davies said it was “incredibly offensive and wrong” to suggest police were not investigating the murder and that it was too early to categorise Garg’s death as a race-hate crime.
The Indian cartoonist, R. Prasad, said there was a sense of injustice in India and that the attitude of Australian authorities “amounted to acceptance of racism or authorising similar future crimes as mere opportunistic violence”.
“The cloak of the Ku Klux Klan is a globally known and recognised cultural signifier that represents racism. It also symbolises violence in the name of race or colour,” he added in an emailed statement.
Garg’s killing … threatens to damage diplomatic ties as well as Australia’s 15.4 billion US dollar education export industry.
The Federation of Indian Students in Australia said it was “too early to rule in or rule out any cause for the death of Mr Nitin Garg”.
But spokesman Gautam Gupta urged police to provide statistics on the number of crimes committed by and against Indians and whether criminals have been caught and trialled in previous cases of assaults against Indians.
The editor of the Mail Today claimed that Australian police statistics showed one in 20 attacks in Melbourne was against an Indian student despite them representing just one in every 1,000 people in the city.
“Silence on the facts and figures are not going to help the situation,” Gupta said, adding that there was a rising level of cynicism amongst the Indian diaspora.
In June, police said that 1,447 people of Indian origin were victims of crime against the person — such as robberies and assaults — in Victoria between June 2008 and July 2009, an increase from 1,082 the previous year.
Gupta said the Australian government’s response to the latest murder was seen as “merely diplomatic and an exercise in public relations and image damage control”.
Indian students number 119,000 in Australia … (via Australia slam Indian paper’s Ku Klux Klan cartoon – Yahoo! News).
Such a lovely country – and such lovely people
Just why were Indians raising the issue of crime in Australia? Especially, when crime is so much higher ‘there’ (in India) than ‘here’ (in Australia) was the gist of the long post. Shri Tim Colebatch is rather proud of the low murder rates in Australia. Demmed Indians!
Data spouted by this post ignores some ‘basic’ facts. Murder incidents in Australia are lesser because finding another Australian to kill is so damned hard. In a country of that size, with such a sparse population. And that, my Shri Tim Colebatch, is the reason, why Australian crime rates are lower than in India.
The same post mentions how “India, of course, is a very big country.” But Australia is a much bigger. Three times bigger, in fact. And it has a population of 2.5 crores (25 million) – compared to India’s 110 crores (1.1 billion).
If you compare Indian crime scenario with the Rest of the Western World, you will see a different picture – completely different. Colebatch does not seem to find it strange when in ‘country of murderers’, “This time last year, I was in India with the family on holiday, and the worst danger we faced was trying to cross the road.”
An Australian paper had telling comment,
According to police statistics for the 2006-07 financial year, the assault rate for Indians in Victoria was about 1700 people in every 100,000. In comparison, the rate of assault of non-Indians in Victoria was about 700 people in every 100,000. (via India paper defends KKK cartoon).
Holy cow … what about racism in India
And maybe this is something that Shri Colebatch, you can share with friend, Rory Medcalf, the Lowy Institute’s program director for international security and a former diplomat in India, who says,
”Part of the problem is that a decision seems to have been taken that there was nothing to be gained with an acknowledgement of racism. That is something the media have fixated on – an attempt to gain an admission on this innocuous point that there is racism in Australia, just as there is in India or any other country.”
After wiping out the entire population of the Australian Aborigines, Mr.Rory Medcalf, thinks that the racism issue is an ‘innocuous point’. The so-called ‘persecuted’ people in India are in a majority, their populations are growing faster than the ‘oppressors’. So, this bit about racism in India, is red herring. Complete ignorance – if it is not trickery.
Whez yo sensa huma
Mr.Greg Davies complains how the cartoonist is neither “clever or witty.” Murder ain’t a fit subject to be humourous about. But the Australian attitude to bury their heads in the sand is. Comes from eating too much of ostrich meat, I presume. And I think this sarcasm is not getting through to Mr. Davis.
Multi-culti balti Australia
Australia, Britain have carefully sold a lemon to their populations about how tolerant they are. Which is bit of a joke. Unlike France, Switzerland which are rabidly xenophobic – and have made a virtue of their hatred for the hijab, burqa, minars and minarets. They don’t do the multi-culti-balti dance. For all its multiculturalism, Australia, how many Africans did Australia admit last year? How many Muslims? What percentage of Australians are Muslims? And to think this is what passes of as multiculturalism in Australia?
Keep on rocking in a Free World
Some time back, a German artist, Martin Kippenberger’s creation of the crucified frog was moved to a less visible location, displayed at the Museion, the newborn museum of contemporary art in Bolzano, after His Holiness, The Pope decided to condemn this sculpture.
“Zuerst die Füße” (first the feet), the sculpture dated from 1990, which measures about a meter and represents a crucified frog holding in its right hand a mug of beer and in its left hand an egg. In this work Kippenberger represents a society that appears perfect but is actually hypocritical.”
When the Islamic world protested about Danish-Mohammed cartoons, there was a huge outcry in Western cities about freedom of speech. When the crucified frog is moved to a ‘less visible location’, there is no protest.
Maybe Kippenberger was right after all.
The Indian Community Centre in Belfast has received a threat letter from Protestant extremists asking immigrants to leave Northern ireland or face bomb attacks.
Besides the Indian centre, the threat letter has been sent to the Belfast Islamic Centre and the Polish Association, reports from Belfast said.
The letter, threatening of racist violence, from the youth wing of the Ulster Defence Association warned: “No sympathy for foreigners, get out of our Queen’s country before our bonfire night (July 11) and parade day (July 12).”
“Other than that your building will be blown up. Keep Northern Ireland white. Northern Ireland is only for white British.” (via Threat to bomb Indian community centre in Belfast- Hindustan Times).
After all, how can you blame other people? Apparently, the logic why the Roma Gypsies are disliked is, because,
“people dislike a group that don’t pay taxes, don’t integrate into the community, don’t speak the language of their guest country, and are seemingly the origins of most petty crime in any area they descend upon, and yet this same group demand the community supports them, demands that specialist teachers are provided for their offspring, demand they have unfettered access to the same services as the rest of us but don’t pay their way.”
What could be more logical, when these Roma,
appear anywhere they want, set up their camps, totally dividing entire communities, demand these things, and then get … bleeding heart liberals jumping to their defence when the people (btw – they were the people you guys would have been defending 10 years ago, although,to be fair, you probably patronisingly refered to them as ‘proles’) decide to give them a message, and yet you wonder why they’re hated.
Probably, the Indians, Poles and the Muslims also have similar problems – which they themselves cannot see.
But these enlightened British souls from Northern Ireland can see more and further – then we can.
Police said the racist attacks started last week, with gangs smashing house windows and attacking cars. The violence flared again on Monday when youths hurling bottles and Nazi salutes attacked an anti-racism rally called to support the migrants.
Belfast City Council press officer Mark Ashby said the majority of the victims were Roma, or Gypsies, from Romania.
Marian Mandache, from the Romanian Gypsy NGO Romani Crisis, said the Northern Ireland violence was the latest in a disturbing trend of attacks across Europe.
“Starting with Italy in 2007, there have been waves of … racist attacks against Roma,” said Mandache. “Afterwards, there were attacks in the Czech Republic, Hungary, Slovakia and Romania.” (via Gypsies face Northern Ireland ethnic violence).
Hitler was never alone
Hitler’s biggest mistake – he lost the war.
The genocide with which his regime was charged with was also carried out against the Native Americans in the USA, the Australian aborigines, in Congo by the Belgians. Post colonial Governments in Kenya and India have ignored the cover-up of the millions killed by the colonial rulers – in the Mau Mau operations in Kenya or the 1857 War in India.
The Romani Gypsies Sinti have been a favored European target for the last 500 years – by the Vatican, by the Protestant Church, by monarchies and by Republican Governments. In war and and in peace.
Their crime. They civilized (?) Europe. No less.
Why Europe continues to demonize and persecute the Roma
Despite the immense contribution by the Roma Gypsies to European culture and life. Is it because: -
- They have a different lifestyle – which is migratory and frugal. They do not wish to have permanent homes, too many possessions or jobs. They prefer living in wagons, with skills and trade that they possess.
- They have not ‘integrated’ into the White, Christian, European social system. They wish to remain ‘different’.
- They stick out like sore thumbs – in a Europe where the Jews have been annihilated, where descendants of the African slave populations have been exterminated and the Islamic population (past and present) is not tolerated. In such a situation, the Roma Gypsies have not only survived, but have regrown (after Hitler’s concentration camps killed them by millions).
Since when, are these qualities a crime.
This disproportionate response against a community, to a crime (I am making an assumption of guilt) by a Roma individual, smacks of persecution, racism and pogroms. After all, this is how Hitler and Mussolini too started their campaigns.
In Northern Ireland, the Roma Gypsy number less than 1000. What threat, what problem could they be to the nearly 2 million people of Northern Ireland?
For over twenty years Erith Borough Council continually tried to remove the gypsies from the Marshes. The Council’s eviction policy even made the National Press. In 1948 the Daily Mirror ‘Ruggles’ cartoon strip featured the plight of the Belvedere Gypsy community.
Finally, in 1956 Erith Borough Council got its way. The Council minutes for that year record that “over 700 persons and 280 ramshackle structures have been removed…The clearance could now be said to be complete” thus ending over 100 years of Gypsy history living on Belvedere Marshes.
By 1965, following a campaign led by Norman Dodds, MP for Erith and Crayford, the Government commissioned a national census survey of the Gypsy community living in Great Britain. Sadly, Norman Dodds died in 1965, but James Wellbeloved who became the MP for the same seat took up Dodds’ campaign and finally, in 1968 Parliament passed the Caravans Sites Act. This Act placed a duty on all local authorities in England and Wales to provide sites on which Gypsies could place their caravans and stay, either temporarily or permanently. However this duty was repealed by the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1995. (from Gypsies In Bexley: A Hundred Years On The Belvedere Marshes By Simon McKeon, 13/07/2006, from Untold London).
To all those who wanted to pin the blame for this wave of violence at the doorsteps of the Roma, better find a new and better story. It was reported that Indians, Muslims and the Poles were also warned. Leave Northern Ireland, or else.