My New Hobby

September 1, 2008

My offhand reference to curmudgeonly thathappas in the last post inspired me to actually search for examples of thathappesque rants. Udupendra helped out by suggesting search keyphrases, and now I have a new hobby: collecting examples of this art form, which derives its beauty from its surreal illogic. So far, this letter to the Deccan Herald is a strong contender for best thathappa-rant ever:

The Indian youth are embracing the global culture and have become more endearing to their way of customs by loosing our precious culture which is invaluable in turn getting lured by their materialistic culture of leading lives which are seen normally in western culture by throwing all values of human parameters.

But Gult thaathyas are not far behind:

The Indian youth is getting carried away by the Western culture, values and practices. This has led to a disturbing trend in which the Indian youth are more often visiting discotheques, night clubs and amusement parks. It may give them some excitement but they don’t get that much-needed peace of mind and confidence.

I’m sure Madras thathas aren’t far behind either, but I haven’t started searching just yet. I’m sure it’ll prove to be a goldmine.

On a related note, Neha Vish putted her own attempt at this art form a year and a half ago.

Put 295A on Pavan K Varma

August 13, 2008

Via India Uncut, I discover that Pavan K Varma has been committing blasphemy:

Indians’ faith in marriage reflects their faith in values, said Varma. “Marriage is an institution which is there to stay in any society. India needs to stand by the values. There is something called sanskar (values) and it is still alive in India though it may have been lost in the metropolises. All gods, at least in Hindu mythology, have consorts. Marriage is an ingrained concept in Indian philosophy,” he said.

I am appalled that this Macaulay-putra has insulted the religious sentiments of millions of Hindus. Has he forgotten all about Hanuman? Worse yet, is he trying to suggest that Hanuman is not a god?

Hanuman was the living embodiment of the power of Ram-Nam. He was an ideal selfless worker, a true Karma Yogi who worked desirelessly. He was a great devotee and an exceptional Brahmachari or celibate.

Hanuman possessed devotion, knowledge, spirit of selfless service, power of celibacy, and desirelessness. He never boasted of his bravery and intelligence.


And what about Ayyappa? Does his celibacy count for nothing either?

Manikanthan was in a fix, as he had no desire to get married, being a celibate by instinct, choice and desire. (Celibacy is supposed to grant tremendous power, both physical and spiritual). Yet the young lady had a valid point.


He struck a deal with her. A temple of his would come up soon where people would come to worship. Their pilgrimage would not be considered complete unless they also worshipped at a shrine to her. All his devotees would grant her the status and respect of a wife. If there ever was a year when a new devotee did not come to the temple at the Sabarimala hills, he would give up his vow of brahamcharya and marry her. She is going to have a long wait as the list of pilgrims only grows ever more unmanageable each year.

Since the god is both a renouncer as well as a celibate, women in the menstrual years are not allowed into the temple. This is a traditional courtesy given to a swami, and does not represent any bias or prejudice against women.


It is only in today’s pseudo-secular environment that Pavan K Varma can get away with insulting the basic aspects of Hindu mythology. Would he ever dare to insult Muslim or Christian religious figures in this way? Fortunately Hindus have the law on their side and can file a Section 295A case against him.