Petition redefining and pledging secularism in India sign now

I appeal to all sensible and literate Indians to sign this petition as a show of solidarity to an important cause.

 

"secularism" is a poor, inadequate word.

In India, it is a term that political parties with competing electoral interests claim rights to. "They're fundamentalists," we're told, "but we're fair secularists."

"secularism" is an exhausted, tired word.

People of India are fed objective, newsfact-driven propaganda on religious injustices and utterances. The things we hear are conflicting and often misleading. Irresponsible media can poison truth.

People of India are forced into anger, and dragged into religious debates. Sometimes, it is hard to resist glorious but convenient opinion, hard to resist believing in simplistic solutions to sensitive inter-religious issues. The most sensible of people can betray their honesty in such testing circumstances.

"secularism" is used as fuel to make ideological divides.

Sometimes, mouthpieces of political parties and fascist organisations condemn "secularism", and we listen
because voices from the opposing sides make dishonest claims of possessing the virtue of "secularism". We find it hard to believe, with their selfish political agendas so clear.

Consequently, we find this "secularism" hard to understand and harder to define.

"secularism" is a meaningless, dangerous word.

The word is lost. We are beginning to forget what it was meant to convey. In this vital time for our country, we cannot afford that.

Now, think that the word is not "secularism", but a simpler, truer word honour. To be honourable its a fresh, new word full of possibilities.

Your honour asks you: 

if you would ever harm an innocent man, woman or child.
if you would ever insult another human being's religious faith or desecrate its objects, whatever his religion be.
if you would ever carry prejudices against any religion, your own or others.
if you would allow your anger at someone's wrong acts to translate into anger towards his religion.
if you would ever hurt a person on the basis of his religion.
if you would ever take the side of a wrongdoer practising your religion, against an innocent person practising another religion.

If there is a god, there is only one way to reach him through one's own self. Religion is an individual's way, and the journey takes a lifetime.

So, it is betrayal of one's honour to forbid a human being from practising his faith. It is just as important to honour another's freedom to be left alone, as it is to protect one's own freedom to be alone.

Honour this.

Take a pledge now, to be honourable to all choices of faith, religion and religious practices. Take a vow to be honourable to decency in any human being. This is the basic foundation of secularism, justice or humanity.

Innumerable people have died in communal killings in India, since our Independence. Across all religions, the tolls are high. It is important to remember that the toll counts don't cross each other off, but add to a single massive human tollas a permanent shame on the perpetrators of violenceand as burden in the hands of an institution that we elect to protect our rights the government.

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Anthony MilesBy:
School and EducationIn:
Petition target:
People of India

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