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While Voice of
India had a controversial reputation, I found nothing irrational, much less extreme about
their ideas or publications. They were simply doing for the Hindu religion what
intellectuals in other religious traditions had done for theirs. Their criticisms of Islam
were on par with the criticisms of the Catholic Church and of Christianity done by
such Western thinkers as Voltaire or Thomas Jefferson. In fact they went far beyond such
mere rational or historical criticisms of other religions and brought in a profound
spiritual and yogic view as well. They were only controversial because, since such a
Hindu point of view had not been previously articulated, its sudden occurrence was
threatening to non-Hindu groups.
I had already seen
several Voice of India books when I first came into contact with Ram Swarup through
correspondence. I first visited him during a trip to Delhi in 1992. My meeting with Ram
Swarup was another significant event, similar to my meeting with Dr. Vashta. His book on
the Names of God was most interesting to me because it reflected a similar research
into the Vedas that I had engaged in. It set the stage for our encounter.
Ram Swarup was a gentle and humble man, with a notable
sweetness of character. In some ways he was like a great sage. In other ways he was almost
childlike He had no consciousness of money, fame or power. He was like a sannyasin but
apart from any monastic order and not trying to build up any ashram or mission.