Thought of the day

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Indian Calendar or ... : Which one is right!

As the Vikrami Samwat 2064 begins on 19th March 2007, yet again an issue rises, Indian Calendar vs Christian Calendar.

I met a noble man who always told “You are lucky you are born in Hindu family and more lucky are you to b e linked with Sanatan Dharma” Here I feel the need to express my respect for all religions and beliefs. My point is not to raise any religious issues or to mark a question on anybody’s belief. I don’t find any religion telling disrespect humanity or don’t believe in existence of God. Which means everyone is preaching same things in their own way.

So now another issue rises that why I mentioned this particular statement. Just to underline what I am about to say.

Well as far as my knowledge goes, in Hinduism our sages have planned things so prudently that they are applicable even today. No doubts with times and with people adding things as per their limited knowledge have done a lot of damage to this culture. Far more truth is that for ages religion was used to hold power and few selfish people exploited common man which did the real damage. It simply led people to a way where they either opted to stay away from rituals or moved to other religious beliefs. I still sometimes wonder why is it important for me to get converted to Christianity to follow what Jesus preached or to get converted to Islam to follow what Mohammad preached.

I have heard of people being converted to Islam or Christianity or to other religion, never heard of being converted to Hinduism. This openness of Hinduism has always attracted me and people world over.

In my thoughts and observation, any religion is not about belief only it is about leading a lifestyle. Following Hinduism for few may feel like living in old times but for most its living in modern times as none of the beliefs have gone wrong so far. Here its yet again important to tell Hinduism does not mean being exploited by few, it means living the way Vedas and Puranas tell. Recently I was watching an advertisement on TV for a particular brand that said you can envy us but CAN’T IGNORE US. Same is applicable here.

These days Indian TV channels are full of two things: Trying to justify those who tell Hindu beliefs are outdated and other trying to promote the Hindu beliefs in their own way. To be very honest both are doing damage to Hinduism. Worse is done by people who are promoting it.

Don’t get surprised. That’s true. They are selling what people want to buy and not the right facts. In the blind fold of the profit-desire they are damaging the image of our ancient old beliefs. I recently found someone quoting it rightly on a TV programme that news channels have become “No News Gossip Channels” The only difference is that we discus it sitting in our comfortable lounges and she was courageous and to tell in open.

Well coming back to the basic issue from where I started: 1st Jan New year or beginning of Samwat is a new Year.

We experience six seasons in a year and Hindu calendar works with that. Every Hindu festival and its rituals are closely related to these seasons.

The Christian calendar neither works with solar or lunar progression. It is a simplified method to remember dates and thus became popular and widely acceptable. The Hijri calendar works with Lunar progression which has got some challenges attached to it. But the Vikrami Calender that is widely followed by Hindus works with Solar as well as Lunar progression.

A particular event might not fall on the same date (Christian calendar), as we observe, every year but it falls on same Vikrami date year after year! What does that mean! It means that even decades after decades we will have same solar and lunar positions at the time of that particular event. And do I need to inform that Sun and Moon are the two basic planets that affects all life existence on this planet earth!

It hardly matter whether scientist accept this fact or not, because they are limited by their so called vast studies, researches and instrument panels. They start accepting things only when they re-discover same facts themselves. Its just like re-doing a work that has been done centuries ago. Rather than taking a head start they go blind after western world, doing same blind work they are doing and later finding a new thing/fact that already exists in our Classical books.

Yet again, as ever, I leave my discussion open to the prudence of my readers. Its up to them to decide for a head start or wait for learned scientist to re-do and re-discover things for them!
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Sanjay Gulati Musafir

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