Shri Datta Swami

Posted on: 25 Jan 2019

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Swami answers devotees' questions on Islam

1) Why is Islam associated with violence, meat-eating and other defects?

Shri Anil asked: Padanamaskaram Swami! Suraj Advaita asked the following doubts in a forum and is seeking their clarification from You. Kindly give Your reply. At Your divine feet, Anil.

Why is Islam causing problems everywhere? Why is the Quran so negatively written? Why does Islam allow meat-eating, when Sanatana Dharma does not allow it? If meat eating is sin, why are Muslims allowed to eat meat? Is Islam the Devil’s religion? Also, please let me know what things on your channel I should propagate? I have read most of your articles and I have liked them. Where can I find all your articles?

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Swami replied: Sin is sin irrespective of the religion a person follows. No divine scripture allows any human being to follow sin. But when a certain sin is inevitable and when no single person can change it among the people belonging to a certain religion or region, the divine scripture neglects for the time being. The scripture, in its preaching, concentrates on the control of other sins at least. Even in Hinduism, non-vegetarian food is consumed by people belonging to several sects. You cannot blame Muslims alone for consuming non-vegetarian food since non-vegetarians are present in almost all religions. There are several good and bad qualities in every religion. You should not blame any specific religion for non-vegetarianism since it is found in almost all religions. Even in Buddhism, which is famous for non-violence, people consumed non-vegetarian food right from the time of Buddha. Except for Jainism, non-vegetarianism has always existed in every religion of the world.

Eating non-vegetarian food is a sin because it involves the killing of animals and birds to obtain their meat. There is no sin in merely eating non-vegetarian food if it does not involve the killing of harmless creatures. Eating non-vegetarian food obtained from naturally dead animals is not considered to be sin. Kaapaalikas in Hinduism eat the meat of naturally dead living beings and it is not counted as a sin. Hence, eating either vegetarian or non-vegetarian food is not a sin directly. Eating non-vegetarian food becomes an indirect sin due to the killing of animals for their meat.

We should not provoke quarrels among the followers of religions by finding faults with other people’s religions. Faults are present in all the religions in one form or another. Such fanatic behavior must be avoided to bring peace to this world. An atom of goodness in us appears to us as a mountain while the mountain of badness in us appears to us as an atom! In the case of others, we reverse the policy: an atom of badness in others appears to us as a mountain and the mountain of goodness in others appears to us as an atom! Such biased behavior results in quarrels among religions. Actually, we must look at things in exactly the opposite manner. We must see an atom of badness in us as a mountain and a mountain of goodness in us as an atom. Similarly, we must see an atom of goodness in others as a mountain and a mountain of badness in others as an atom. By looking at things in this manner, we can avoid quarrels, not only with other religions but also with all our fellow-human beings. Such behavior is the basis of bringing peace in our family, in our city, in our state, in our country and finally in this entire world. If there is any human being who is trying hard to bring peace in this world, God likes that person to the greatest extent because God wants this world, created and maintained by Him, to run peacefully. Anybody violating this main aim of God becomes the object of His terrible anger.

In Hinduism, people kill animals in a ritual called yajna, which means sacrifice. But the Veda clearly says “Manyuh pashuh”, which means that the ‘animal’ to be killed is the rigid, animal-like foolishness, which makes a human being follow blind traditions without analysis. As a symbolic representation of this concept, it is suggested that the flour of useless non-germinating grains be shaped into the form of an animal and that form be cut with a knife. The form of the animal made out of flour is called a Pistapashuh. This practice of cutting the flour-animal exists in the sacrifice or yajna which is performed with knowledge. Such a yajna is called ishti. But people who were fond of non-vegetarian food exploited this concept by replacing the flour-animal with an actual animal in order to justify the killing of animals for meat. Such people will not stop killing animals for food even if the Veda orders them to stop.

For the sake of such people, the Veda introduced the concept of offering the meat to God after killing the animal. That way, the killer is at least introduced to the concept of the existence of God. He is reminded of the concept that all his sins, including this one, will inevitably be punished by the unimaginable God. The punishment is delivered to him in an unimaginable way so he can never escape from it. In the procedures of such yajnas, the Veda describes the killing of the animal only as an inevitable incidental step. It does not mean that the Veda is ordering you to kill the animal. The description of killing the animal is being included in the procedure since, due to your taste for meat, you will kill the animal anyway and you will not stop even if the Veda orders you to stop killing. We should be clear that the Veda is not encouraging people to kill animals.

When the sin is inevitable due to people’s hard-to-change habit, the Veda is temporarily allowing it, with the hope of changing the habit in the future. After killing the animal, at the very least, people can offer the meat to God before consuming it themselves. It will strengthen the concept of God in people’s minds. Once the concepts of God, His unimaginable omnipotence and His punishment of sins are firmly established in their minds, changing their habit of meat-eating will be easier. So, the Veda contains descriptions of even the inevitable killing of animals, which is incidental to offering the meat to God. The blind ritualists (Puurvamiimaamsakaas) take these incidental descriptions of the killing of animals in the procedures of the Vedic sacrifices as orders given by the Veda to kill! In this context, Shankara clarified that the Veda is only stating the incidental step of killing, which you will do anyway and that it is not ordering or encouraging you to kill (Jnaapakam na tu kaarakam). So, one can never put the blame of this sin on the Veda!

Similarly, the Quran also states the incidental step of killing the animal, while describing the procedure of offering the meat of the animal to Allah (Bismillah). These people who are in the habit of eating meat will not stop killing animals for their meat even if the Quran orders them to stop. So, you cannot blame the Quran for supporting the killing of animals. If you blame the Quran, you will have to equally blame the Veda too! The intention of the scripture is only to temporarily follow the rigid ignorance of people who kill animals so that the crucial concept of God as the Punisher of sins can be established. Once this concept is established, controlling these people becomes a lot easier. The same God revealed both the Veda and the Quran and hence, the concepts of the two divine scriptures cannot be different. Using this analysis, every human being in this world must develop Universal Spirituality, which is based on one God as the single Source of all divine scriptures and religions. Spirituality means the theoretical knowledge or philosophy. Religion is the practical path of worship of God and maintaining justice in the world. Upon understanding Universal Spirituality, each one must join the Universal Religion, while staying in one’s own religion.

 

2) Is it wrong for a born-Hindu to pray like a Muslim?

Shri Hrushikesh asked: Dear Swami, One devotee asked the following question. Your servant, Hrushikesh.

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[I was born into a Hindu family. But I have been following Islamic mode of prayer. Everyone says I have left my dharma. Have I done something wrong? My husband says a woman should follow her husband’s dharma and that if she can't, she need not pray at all. All she has to do is serve him and he is her God and that she needs no other prayer. My husband insists that following Islamic mode of prayer is wrong when its not his dharma. Most of my Hindu friends have left me They say if i want them back i have to give up my Islamic mode of prayer. Some people are totally behaving with me as if I were a jihadi. One said I bear every sin of killing done by a terrorist. I am still the same person. I don't hate Hinduism. It is just that I like the simplicity of Islam. The philosophical part of me still follows Vedanta. Surely I am looking at Islam through my Vedantin mind. I don't call myself a Muslim. For me the term Muslim is not a religion. Its meaning just means one who surrenders. Guruji please answer the questions below eagerly waiting for your answer.

1. Guruji if in a personal journey do opinions of others matter?

2. Guruji am I wrong? Because my husband said a wife can’t leave dharma of husband so he said I can't pray Islamic way. Is my husband right in saying this? My calling is Islam.I follow my heart..is it wrong?

At your Lotus feet, Anonymous]

Swami replied: Certainly, you are not wrong and certainly, all others who say that you are wrong, are wrong. There is no trace of doubt in this declaration. You have not changed your religion by following certain modes of prayer belonging to another religion. Any mode of prayer belonging to any religion is correct and good. You are not criticizing the modes of worship of Hinduism. If you do so, you too can be said to be wrong. Not only can one adopt any mode of worship, but one can also pray to any form of God belonging to any religion, based on one’s personal liking. The different forms of God of various religions are not different since the one and only God exists in every one of them. When this is the truth of even the forms of God in different religions, then what to speak of the different modes of prayer in religions?

You can adopt any mode of prayer of any religion if you like it. This is the basic right of every person in the Universal Religion, which is based on Universal Spirituality. The Universal Spirituality is the basic universal knowledge or philosophy. The one God, who created this entire creation and who is the kind Father of all humanity, preached the same common universal knowledge to people in different places and times. The Universal Religion is the universal practical path of worshipping that one God and maintaining justice and peace in the world. The mode of worship is a part of culture and the variations in it are a matter of personal choice. The spirituality and religion are thus the theoretical and practical parts of the spiritual path and both are universal.

Universal Spirituality and Universal Religion have been established by God Datta now through this Datta Swami. Earlier, Shri Ramakrishna Paramahamsa had experienced the unity of all religions by practicing every religion for some time. Shankara had similarly, established the unity of all the sub-religions within Hinduism. Shri Shirdi Sai Baba and Shri Satya Sai Baba too had established the unity of world religions. Every religion will lead a person to the same God. So, conversion to another religion is the biggest foolishness that any devotee can do. When all roads lead to the same center, is it not the height of foolishness to leave your road and laterally cross over to another road that leads to the same center? Good times for this entire world are very near. This Universal Spirituality and Religion will bring tremendous unity among all religions. You said that you are following the philosophy of Hinduism. In the spiritual knowledge or philosophy there is no name of any religion since knowledge is always universal.

Parents take complete care of their children during their childhood. The efforts taken by the parents for their children is service, which is also known as the sacrifice of work. Finally, the parents also transfer all their wealth to their children through their will. This transferring of the wealth is called the sacrifice of the fruit of their work since wealth is the fruit of work. So, the sacrifice of the parents for the sake of their children in terms of the sacrifice of work and the fruit of work is complete. Yet most parents save some wealth for their own old age believing that they will live until they become old. They feel there is a risk in sacrificing their entire wealth to their issues while they are still alive. There is a possibility that if their children are not good, they might not take care of the parents in the future when the parents become old. Sometimes, even if the children are good they could be incapable of serving their parents due to some unfortunate circumstances.

The case of God is different from one’s children. God is not bad; He is extremely good. He is also never incapable. In fact, He is omnipotent. Another important difference is that while one’s children are seen with one’s eyes, God is not seen. There is insecurity for those who depend on the children who are seen by their eyes. But there is complete security for those who depend on the unseen God. Ignorant souls only believe in perception. Giving more importance to their unreliable children who are seen, they shower their real love upon the children. The proof of real love is karma yoga. The sacrifice of work and the fruit of work together are called karma yoga. It is the proof of real love since we practically serve and sacrifice our money only for those whom we truly love. Ignorant people truly love only their children and so they do this karma yoga only for their children who are unreliable. They do not truly love God and they do not do karma yoga for Him even though He is supremely reliable, just because He is unseen. Real devotees are the ones who believe in God through inference. They believe in the unseen, unimaginable God by observing His miracles which are visible but unimaginable. Inference, of course, includes perception since the miracles are perceived. This mentality of the majority of human beings is the climax of blind ignorance. Such blind ignorance is actually not based on either perception or inference but is based only on solidified worldly fascination!

 

3) How according to you is Islam the greatest religion?

Dr. V Jaganmohan asked: Would you please enlighten us on the following:

How is Islam greater than any other religion? By Islam, do you mean the ideology as developed on the teachings of the Koran, Hadis, and Mohammed? Thanking you, Sincerely, DrVJ.

Swami replied: You must be knowing that in Hinduism we do some special rituals called vratams to worship God. Some examples are the Satyanaaraayana Swami Vratam, Varalakshmii Vratam, Nandikeshvara Vratam, Mangala Gauri Vratam and so on. You must have observed that a common verse is read out in each of these rituals. The meaning of the verse is that this ritual is the best of all rituals (vrataanaam uttamam vratam). How is this possible when the superlative degree must be used for only one in a given group? You can say that this student is the best in the class. You cannot say that every student in the class is the best. This is the underlying doubt in your question. The answer for this reasonable doubt is that you must first know that God is the greatest as said in the Veda (Na tat samah) and in the Gita (Mattah parataram...). The common object of all the above rituals and forms of worships is the same greatest unimaginable God existing in different divine forms. From the point of view of the common God who is the greatest, every worship becomes the greatest. Similarly, all religions are like different roads converging to the common center, which is the greatest God. Hence, every religion is the greatest.

We should get rid of all fanatic behavior towards our religion. It causes us to look upon other religions as inferior to our religion. Every religion says that God alone created this earth and humanity on it. If the Gods of different religions were different, there would have been different earths. But unfortunately, there is only one earth. So, we are forced to accept the existence of only one God! The God of the other religion is also the God who created us and the God of our religion is also the God who created them. There is only one God and one created earth! The external names and forms of the same God differ from religion to religion, but the internal God is only one. If you disrespect the form and the name of the God of another religion, you are disrespecting the God of your own religion. Do you respect a person only when he wears a certain dress and disrespect the same person when he wears another dress?

 
   

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