to allow Hindus in India their perspective on other religions is also rather strange
because in Christian or Islamic countries, Hinduism, if it is tolerated at, is generally
explained in a very negative manner as a religion of strange cults, idol worship, widow
burning, and dowry deaths.
I am speaking as a writer
on Hinduism in the United States and have to frequently deal with these negative
stereotypes. Even in academic circles in this country there is a reluctance to accept that
Hinduism is a religion at all but merely a collection of cults.
One university here recently published the view of a
prominent American professor of Asian Studies that Hinduism is a modern political
expropriation of various unrelated cults for nationalist ambitions and that prior to the
last century there was no such thing as Hinduism in India, and no such thing as India as a