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Sarva Dharma Sambhava Essay Format

Sarva Dharma Sama Bhava is an Hindu concept embodying the equality of the destination of the path's followed by all religions (Although the path's themselves may be different). The concept was embraced by Ramakrishna and Vivekenanda,[1] as well as Mahatma Gandhi.[2] Although commonly thought to be among the ancient Hindu vedas, the phrase is actually attributed to Gandhi, having been used first in September 1930 in his communications to his followers to quell divisions that had begun to develop between Hindus and Muslims toward the end of the British Raj.[2] The concept is one of the key tenets of secularism in India, wherein there is not a separation of church and state, but an attempt by the state to embrace all religions.[3][4]

Sarva dharma sama bhav has been rejected by a small portion of highly conservative Hindu's who claim that religious universalism has led to the loss of many of Hinduism's rich traditions.[5]:60

Sarva dharma sama bhav is often mistranslated as "All religions are the same", although it's true meaning is closer to "All path's lead to the same destination [In a religious sense]".


External links[edit]

  1. ^Long, Jeffrey (2012). "The Politicization of Hinduism and the Hinduization of Politics: Contrasting Hindu Nationalism with the Transformative Visions of Swami Vivekenanda and Mahatma Gandhi". In Ricci, Gabriel R. Politics in Theology. Transaction. ISBN 9781412848039. 
  2. ^ abRakhit, Maanoj. RKM Propagating the Opposite of What Vivekananda and Ramakrishna Had Said: Call to the Rank and File at RKM! Stand Up and Uphold the Truth. Maanoj Rakhit. ISBN 9788189746490. 
  3. ^Smith, Donald E (2011). India as a Secular State. Princeton University Press. ISBN 9781178595253. 
  4. ^Larson, Gerald James (2001). Religion and Personal Law in Secular India: A Call to Judgment. Indiana University Press. ISBN 0-253-33990-1. 
  5. ^Long, Jeffrey D. (2007). A Vision for Hinduism: Beyond Hindu Nationalism. I.B.Tauris. ISBN 9781845112738. 

Kartikey Sehgal

I realise that I can’t be writing about ‘male ego and feminism’ and decoding human behaviour in the current political and social scenario. The recent Mumbai blasts have affected me; it’s proof that I am still sane as compared to other Indians who are essentially mannequins or puppets depending on the time of the day. That series is postponed.

I also realise that ‘sarva dharma sambhava’ is understood to mean ‘all religions are equal/possible’ and that the term stands for multiculturalism. It does not.

‘Sarva dharma sambhava’ is not multiculturalism. It does not mean that ‘all religions are true/possible’. Dharma is not religion. Dharma is dharma. It applies to the Indian ‘religions’. Jainism, Buddhism and any other sect or creed that varies around the Indian dharma. It essentially means that they are possible. That duality exists in singularity. That they are the same but seem different or are different and seem the same.

The goat and lion are different animals and yet they go to the same earth [after death]. Or as Bulle Shah says:

MaaTi maaTi nu maaran lagi,
MaaTi de hathiyaar,
Jis maaTi par bahuti
MaaTi tis maaTi haNkaar.

Dust battles with dust,
Dust its weapons.
Dust with dust poured upon it,
Is the dust of arrogance. 


All go to dust, says Bulle Shah. Any yet we are different. Different matis. Or so we think!
It is in reference to such concepts that we should look at ‘sarva dharma sambhava’. Such thoughts are its home; not the ‘all religions are one’ refrain we hear in media and from ‘experts’.

I don’t think proselytizing religions can be a part of this concept. Since they claim to be the ‘superior dust’.

Now with this little knowledge of ‘sarva dharma sambhava’, read this line from Meera Nanda’s article:

What distinguishes the VoI-brand of Hindutva—and pushes it into the global network of Islamophobia—is its staunch opposition to the mantra of sarva dharma samabhaav, the Hindu equivalent of multiculturalism. [source]

Apply the correct meaning to ‘sarva dharma sambhava’ and this paragraph is meaningless. Meera equates Norwegian killer Anders Breivik with RSS and ‘nationalists’ using such terms. They are the same.

Possible sequel: The self-flagellating Indians

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