How does religious Hate turn into Violence like in Oslo? – 26 Jul 11

Religion

Yesterday I wrote about the mass killer Andres Behring Breivik who killed so many people in Norway. In court he yesterday spoke, as expected, without any remorse or guilt. I read some articles about his manifesto and read that he mentions India many times in his writing. He suggests that anti-Muslim parties and organizations all over the world should work together, Jews in Israel, Buddhists in China, Hindu nationalists in India and Christian fundamentalists in Europe and the USA.

It seems he is impressed by the Hindu nationalists in India and even mentions the websites of BJP and RSS. Many of their members are already accused of spreading Hindu terrorism, some even confessed and now face charges for their crimes.

I mentioned yesterday already that such thoughts and attitudes are everywhere in the world, in every country and culture. In India we can feel and see that very clearly already, every time when there are riots and attacks for religious reasons. In this article I was shocked to read that a former member of parliament of the BJP, B. P. Singhal, stated ?I was with the shooter in his objective, but not in his method. If you want to attract the nation?s attention, surely you need to do something drastic and dramatic, but not killing people.?

I want to ask especially such narrow-minded Hindu nationalists whether they have forgotten the Mantra ?Vasudhaiv Kutumbakam?, which comes from Hindu scriptures and was taught in my childhood in primary school, too. It means ?Our planet is one family?. Where in this Mantra is space for such ideas?

You see, the ideas are the same, this Indian man already has the same way of thinking as that man who shot down young kids! Breivik may have been mentally a bit more sick and took the step to take a gun and shoot down people but the basic attitude can be found elsewhere, too!

These thoughts and actions can be from any religious group towards any other group. In one country Muslims fight against Christians, in the other country Hindus fight against Muslims and in another country other religious groups fight each other. It doesn?t matter which religion they belong to and which religion they are fighting against, they have something in common: their hate.

Seeing this extent of hate all over the world is appalling but it is reality. How many people have died because of such hate? How many are dying each day? It is not the spreading of any religion that we should stop but it is the spreading of this hate which we need to put a halt to. Such ideas can be in anybody, your neighbor, your co-worker or the person standing next to you in the supermarket.

How can we stop the violence resulting from such ideas? I have an appeal to make to psychotherapists, brain researchers and scientists: I believe this readiness to kill a person because of this hate is a kind of sickness. Find out what the cause is for this sickness. Many people voice their anger but there are only some who start taking weapons in their hands and kill others to make their point. What is happening in their brains? Is there a way that you could recognize this attitude before? Is there an option to see whether a person with such hate will become violent or not?

I believe that it is a psychological sickness but it is triggered by something. What happened that makes them kill others? If we can find out the reason for this sickness, we have a chance to treat them. Of course no killer will come to the police or to doctors before his crime to tell them he has this mental sickness. This is why only finding a treatment is not the way. We need to find the reason for this psychological problem and then treat this. The solution will be to change our society. To change the way that children grow up, change the educational system or how we treat each other even in our adulthood. To remove that factor that lets the hate increase until they become violent.

The only thing that we can do now however is to be tolerant and in love ourselves. We need to actively practice this tolerance and compassion. We need to teach love to our children and to keep a close eye on the people around us, discouraging them from any similar ideas. Realize that we are one world and all are humans, not divided by race, colour, language, culture or religion. Keep in mind that we all are human.

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  1. Tina J

    It is so true, I could cry when I see the differences that people make when they get to know one person is of their religion and the other is not. It is tragic, really, and it happens everywhere. And when they have a turn towards violent behaviour, this is what happens.

  2. Aswani

    Swamiji, brilliantly expressed thoughts. I am in support of your views. To me, it is nothing more than sheer madness. Human killing humans for foolish reasons. There is absolutely no justification to this madness. I really don’t get the reason for such hate and violence. Nothing is to achieved from all these and yet the killing continues…I am speechless..!! Just praying to God to bring an end to all these…its enough now..!!

  3. Swami Balendu

    Thank you dear Aswani for your comment. You are right, it makes us speechless. But we need to think of the future. This should not happen again and the problem is that people with this kind of mad ideas exist everywhere. We need to find a solution of how to treat them and not let them develop a violent personality as children already. This horrible event makes us speechless but many questions are left and we need to find answers for them. Don’t know what to say, I am an emotionally sensitive person and got shaken by this. Much Love to you.

  4. Abi Charlie Mansley

    I have read he also thought women should not be encouraged to be educated or have access to birth control; a proper misogynist !

  5. Annan Boodram

    The whole thing stems from the fact that some people believe that God is on their side only and that God is a God of violence and vengeance.

  6. Mirela

    It’s a pity that some people are using religion to legitimate their deeds. They kill and suppress others in the name of god. How can you adore and worship such a god, who makes it possible, to do such cruel things? Can this truly be gods will?

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