Thursday, April 17, 2014

The difference between secularism and tolerance

Whenever I converse with some tweeples who call themselves "staunch Bharatiyas," "nationalists" and so on, I hear the term 'pseudo-sickular' hurled at me often for questioning their faith in certain aspects of their ideology (read Hindutva). When I talk of carnage in the name of Hindutva like Babri and post-Godhra Gujarat in 2002 they use this term and bring in 1984, Kashmitri Pundits and some other riots where Hindus were also killed in large numbers.

Apart from being a logical fallacy to argue on those lines (two wrongs don't make a right) and the endless blame game (I'm only talking about Hindutva here not something else but we digress often because of this blame game), I am accused by the tweeples of being pseudo-secular.

First of all, secularism is a practice of the state, it is when the state or a country, separates itself from religion in all its activities. An individual is tolerant, he/she respects other's faith. This tolerance, however, does not mean that people ought to buy each and every tenet one's faith teaches. 

This game has been played by many of the so called "nationalists" for many years now, they have stolen the term 'secular' for their own selfish purposes and have played the role of a victim beautifully. 

I urge you to not fall prey to such peoples' jibes. Stand your ground. Oppose all aspects of violence in the name of anything, be it religion or politics.

India will be a secular state if people are tolerant. The state need not tolerate any of these atrocities in the name of secularism. 

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