This refers to the article “What Hindus can & should be proud of” (July 23). From the memoirs published in The Hindu after Nehru’s death, it was a pleasant surprise to note that he used to read the Bhagvad Gita every day in the early hours even during his prime ministerial days. It is not necessary to visit a temple, especially for one who reads and imbibes the message contained in the highest scriptures prescribed for Hindus. It is improper to call Nehru a lapsed Hindu. The uniqueness of Nehru was that he did not impose his faith on others.

R. Krishnamurthy,

Coimbatore

The article claims that Ram was a mythical god. Many scholars have established the existence of Ram as a “Surya Vanshi” and king of Ayodhya. And Ayodhya was the capital of Koshala Desha, one of the 56 kingdoms that existed then.

Mr. Guha goes on to say that the Sankaracharyas organised a signature campaign against Gandhiji. I can say this much: Mahatma Gandhi sought the audience of Sri Chandrasekharendra Saraswati and was closeted with him for about an hour in Nellissery village near Palakkad. C. Rajagopalachari had to remind Gandhiji of his dinner time. To this, Gandhiji is reported to have said that his experience with the Kanchi Sankaracharya was so fulfilling that he did not need dinner any more.

S. Chidambaresa Iyer,

Chennai

There are two streams of thinking in Hinduism: one that believes caste and gender hierarchies must be implemented and the other that believes in the elimination of these prejudices. Although the latter is more acceptable, it also suffers from the same parochial understanding as the former.

It fails to understand the essence of the ancient Hindu religion, which tells us that the path to realise god in everything is the same Brahma.

Vijay Singh Shekhawat,

Jaipur

The article is a timely communication to Hindus to look inward, take pride in significant achievements and look further to rid the religion of its inconsistencies. It fails to explain the rise of Hindu fundamentalism, though.

What makes a large number of educated Hindu youth question the secularism propounded by some mainstream parties and the media? Unless we address this, it would be futile to expect them to take pride in Swami Vivekananda and other eminent reformers.

R. Kailasnath,

Chennai

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