Tuesday, July 21, 2009


It was a few days back that I had to fill a form for a course. There was a lady who talked to me after the trial class. She asked, “your name?”, I replied, “Sonia Bhatia”. God knows how she heard Sonia Thakur, though Thakur and Bhatia don’t rhyme at all. She said “Sonia Thakur, so you must be a Bengali or a Gujarati”…I told her that the name is Sonia Bhatia not Sonia Thakur….
Something that happens always is that the moment I tell my name to people, they say, “you must be from a Punjabi family, right.” Now this is how people might be reacting to these names..
Sonia Sharma, …….. must be Hindu……..
Sonia Khan…….. must be Muslim…
Sonia Ghosh …… must be Bengali…….
I am not using the name Sonia because its my name but because it happens to be a very common name and almost every last name goes well with it……
I just kept on thinking bout this....... how the hell does that matter… why is it so very important for people…why are people wanting to know bout others’ religion…. Why are they wanting to classify people…..

Talking about religions, honestly I believe in ‘agnostic theism’…. I don’t believe in any religion at all… we can live without religion but we cannot live without human affection….I would have been exactly the same person even if I were Sonia Khan Or Sonia D’Souza……and why should Sonia Khan follow Islam and Sonia D’souza Christianity….. why cant it be a person’s choice to choose his/her religion.. I had actually tried to do so, but I didn’t find even a single religion worth following and I don’t even feel that it is essential for any person to follow any religion at all …. therefore, I am an agnostic theist….. Yes, people from different regions have different languages, different customs, different religions…this is diversity…but I don’t find any ‘unity’ in this ‘diversity’…I completely agree with Jonathan Swift , “We have just enough religions to make us hate, but not enough to make us love”…. Yes, more than 90% riots in India were due to religion…I was absolutely shocked when I read a scrap in a friend’s scrapbook on orkut…. It was regarding the number of Hindus and the number of Muslims who were killed in Gujarat riots…. How does that matter.. Something that is more important is that ‘innocent people’ were killed because of something which is actually not at all important, not at all required……It was religion that helped the British to divide and rule and it is religion that politicians use today to do the same.. I feel ashamed that parties like MNS and people like Raj Thackeray exist in my country…

Akbar’s din-i-llahi was a brilliant idea, great concept….. but it failed….and it failed because people didn’t even think about it…. people considered it to be ‘blasphemy’…… it was around 400-500 years ago…but even today people would never accept something like din-i-llahi, something like paganism, something like agnostic theism, something which talks of peace and humanity…….

I know…. After reading this article… some people would agree to this, some wont…but this is not a debate…. This is not even an opinion……This is a humble request…. The next time, if you hear a name…. please don try to figure out if the person is a Hindu or a Muslim or a Gujarati or a Bengali or whatever…. Just ask yourself this question “ Who are you?”…just try to describe yourself in 100 words.. I hope your answer wont include the religion that you follow or the language that you speak or the state that you are from……n then , try n imagine a world without any religion or caste… a world with humanity, love and peace…. We were definitely born with no religion….. we all are homo sapiens, human beings… there wont be any riots, any wars for things that actually do not have any importance at all…. And for the sake of peace and humanity, ask yourself “ Do I really need a religion to live..Why do I need a religion to live.?. Cant I have my own principles and morals instead of following rituals, customs and superstitions that constitute a religion ? We all are Indians, we all are human beings, so why do we need to classify ourselves, to divide ourselves...?" Just ask yourself. Simply ask yourself. Widget on
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esan said...

Let’s see let me give a comment in a diplomatic way, i agree to the fact that there are many religions in India and too many follow them, people always try to judge u by your ethnicity not your identity, You would say that religion has brought the drawback of our country but then i see nowhere in Koran Ramayana and the holy bible (not that ive read them all but to whatever extent I’ve read them) I didn’t see any one line that says you may divide all the life forms on the earth. No religion preaches the policy of divide and rule, its only the humans who do so. Even I agree that no religion is complete, but what religion is the real answer to this one, it is a path towards god, if for example one is an ‘atheist’ he himself is following that path towards god it is his religion. You can’t call something bad or good, that’s bcoz we humans are the ones to have created all the boundaries. Even I hate it when someone asks me my religion I say
"My religion consists of a humble admiration of the illimitable superior spirit who reveals himself in the slight details we are able to perceive with our frail and feeble mind."
Religion does not preach one to be a sadist or a chauvinist but what it does is to love ones god in any form he prays him, in any form u see him.
I love the fact that I intend to answer this in one line ‘I am a n Indian and I love to be so, I hate the people who try to divide my country on the basis of religion, but I love to follow my religion”.
Love thy god love every creature love every thing he has created for the creator of all does not care about our mathematical difficulties. He integrates empirically.

Vini said...

Actually,i found all what u said to be so true..and indeed,it is.I may agree on the fact that religions dont ask us to divide all the life forms on earth.But,eventually there are some things in all the religions that dont match,they contradict.And this is what gives rise to a division in the society.Just for a very common example,hindus pray the "cow",they worship it.But on the other hand muslims show no hesitation in eating beef,pork and all that stuff.Not that their religion says go against hinduism.Its their culture,their taste.Then why the damn hindus treat it to be so ridiculous and inhumane.And to tell that i am myself a hindu,but i dont give any space to such hideous practices as to insult a muslim on just what is his meal or his festivals.It's his right totally.And itz very true atleast I cant follow my religion completely.It is bound to contain some frivolous matters; and mind it "A LITTLE KNOWLEDGE IS A DANGEROUS THING" because yes even my hinduism contains some very disgusting topics that i would even feel ashamed of mentioning out here.Itz because I have gone through both the good and bad elements of hinduism.And to my wonder,the bad ones were far more rigidly worse than the good ones,So,one should see both the sides of the coin.So itz better to follow humanity,the biggest of all,and just eradicate all these religions out from this world coz they can never contribute to peace atleast in India.
and soniya di,I must say a gr8 job 4m ur side.It was EXTREMELY AWESOME.I do exactly favour your words not just by mind but even by heart.HATS OFF...U are wonderful in writing,must not give it a break in your life.Keep going!!........

Sonia said...

@ eshan

thanks alot for the comment......

well i do agree to the fact that none of the holy books preach the policy of divide n rule... and i totally respect your patriotism...
"My religion consists of a humble admiration of the illimitable superior spirit who reveals himself in the slight details we are able to perceive with our frail and feeble mind."
this is close to agnostic theism to some extent....
what i was tryin to say was when you know that no religion is complete and its these ppl who are responsible for treating religion as a source of discrimination,division, riots and what not....and then if u think logically, we do not need any religion at all to live... we have our own principles, our own morals...we don need to follow these man-made customs that comprise a religion......we as youngsters can bring this change in the society and should work for it for the sake of humanity, love and peace...this is all i had to convey

@ vini

thanks a tonne... for appreciatin my work so much.....

but again i really request you not to compare any religions at all....this might hurt those ppl who still think that they are hindus or muslims or ppl following any religion at all..

jus think this way..."we all must be good human beings.... we all must have that love and respect for other humans and we should try to make this world a beautiful place to live in..thats it...ppl simply start followin a religion jus coz their family follows it.. if you think logically , we do not require any religion to live.."

m glad that you appreciated my work.... if at all i can call it work( these are just my feelings, my thoughts).... well i agree to what you said at the end of your comment

itz better to follow humanity,the biggest of all,and just eradicate all these religions out from this world coz they can never contribute to peace atleast in India


esan said...

fist of all i like to thank vinni for bringing up a good point on which i like to clarify more. firstly in my first comment said that it the man who hates or dislikes or creates any emotions, as far as any one angonst u and i are concerned we both do not allow any disgrace to wards any religious person who eats anything, but yet wont u agree that killing an animal for only the purpose of food is a good act; god has inculcated his energy into every creature, Do you disagree u to the fact that u will feel pain if any one of your colleagues is beaten up. u definitely will.

leaving aside this conflict Sonia this ones for u i hope ur gonna gimme a big thought on this phrase i had na encounter with its by Sir Albert Einstein

"Science without religion is lame. Religion without science is blind."

People involved in scientific thinking and rationalism do really say that something that can not be seen does not exist and something that that proves no good for the humans mustnt survive. But religion has survived more than an era do u diagree Science is rather premature to the religios enchantments of our vedas. scientists yet cant discover out the true solution to our holy texts which may even describe what we are.

i was only wondering about what a beautiful eclipse i had witnessed, just when i got hte news of a superstitious belief about the eclipse , 108 children had been burried upto ther neck in the earh to cure their mental and physical illness. Such are the beliefs that bring up the problems of religions being called bad and various other comments. Oh i promise u had i been at that site i would have killed all those superstitious people.

i love ur idea of one religion and i would love to prpose it INDIANISM so follow it guys it the best path to eternity...


esan said...

"Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity; and I'm not sure about the the universe."

so dont follow anything someone preaches u follow what ur heart tells u coz in everyones heart there lives a god, a god who always tells him to do the just , So if God is telling u what to do then go forward and have the oppartunities that await u. No religion no nothing can bring u Solace if u are not listening to your God.
Sonia plz carry on this conversation this is going good.

Eshan Bhatt

Sonia said...

@ eshan

thanks a lot again..... as i said this is not a debate.... u can jus take this as a healthy discussion... sharing views regarding a topic which is really important according to me... i guess i had already written bout my thoughts clearly .. still i wud like to reply to all ur comments

well honestly even i dont want to get into these customs related to different religions, if they are right or wrong, frankly speaking, i really dont care coz i don believe in any of them,,,

well science cannot give a proof for everything... remember einstein's quotes "gravitation cannot be held responsible for ppl fallin in love" and "how on earth are you going to explain on the basis of physics and chemistry such an important phenomenon called first love" ....... well these things... love, relationships, existence of god, life after death.... scientists might never be able to explain these.... these are mysterious n therefore interestin.....

now as far as the survival of religion is concerned... well most of the social evils have survived since the earth was formed..yes religion survived an era... well there are many things that are responsible for this... first of all... ppl have this mentality that they dont want any changes.. they dont want any changes because they are afraid..half of them actually worship coz they are afraid.. most of them have blind faith... they simply continue to do the things their ancestors used to do... this is why female infanticide, child marriage and so many other practices are still going on in india.... i guess now its obvious,,, ppl know that these things are wrong .. still they are practisin them... no one ever tried to talk of religions like this before..they never tried to think if they actually require a religion or not.... and then obv those ppl who use this divide n rule policy... they are partly responsible too..

ppl involved in scientific thinking don think that something that cant be seen doesn exist..but yes, something that proves no good for humans mustnt survive.... but yes, its pretty sad that so many of these things do survive.....

at the end..... this is again a request.... plz dont give this name Indianism to it.... ppl wud start fighting over nations.... we must think of a peaceful, beautiful world .. not only india.. i know u r a very patriotic person, i myself am, but we need to get rid of these wars between different nations... the word is HUMANITY.... nothing else but humanity....


esan said...

yup agreed to all ur points

Menaka Joshi said...

I hv always known u as a very "in-depth" kinda gal!!!
n dis post says it all sonia.
I feel the same way as u do.

Firstly i wanna tell u tht the way u write the blog its lyk ur speaking it urself ....i can actually hear the blog frm u in my mind.....THIS IS CALLED...BEING URSELF,which is ur asset..u wont EVER change for anybody thts for sure.....I LUV DIS QUALITY OF URS.

Secondly, i wanna add tht in the recent few yrs and maybe in future too dis came be one of the major issue of DEBATE....coz of the present senario whr there is NO ACCEPTANCE amids the ppl so naturally the case u presented in ur blog is gonna be very common situation and im sure tht dis may hv happened to many ppl nt just u coz u can count me into it.
As far as Din-i-ilahi is concerned it didnt worked out coz indians r born narrow - minded.
It is in the last decade tht things r changing but at a Sluggish pace ...but thnk god some thing is better than nothing!!!!

Why indians r a prey of racism (i mean keep aside black n white thingy) coz indians hav a naturally invisible characteristic to get surpressed man!!! I HATE THT

"a world with humanity, love and peace"......quoted by you in ur blog itself.
well i wanna correct you darling......dis world is bursting wid materialistic HOMO-SAPIENS!!!!
Humanity, love and peace r the terms used for alternate parallel universe yar!!! I mean dont get me wrong coz during the past i was into my internship n i got to see 0.1 per cent of the real world n LEMME CAUTION U ITS NOT GUD!!!
Its a pack-a-full of damn shit!!!!


Sonia said...

@ menaka

thanks a tonne for the great comment!

yes something is better than nothing..... thats what m tryin to convey.... we, as youngsters... must try n do somethin in this regard... this blog was jus a small effort..we mys talk to everyone around us... we must initiate with it...i mean, i ll be very happy even if a few ppl get what i was tryin to convey..

the world might not be good... but lets not classify ppl as good or bad yar..jus have an optimistic approach.. its jus that if one thinks logically, an individual doesn require any religion... and even for the society....what m tryin to convey is that the world wud be better than what it is now..... if ppl stop classifyin each other on the basis of religion.... i mean, actually it would be a better place to live in....if we forget this concept of religions altogether.. u see.. Jonathan Swift's quote holds true...

this is all i had to say


Anonymous said...

People love debating in India :)

Well, i talk a lot of rubbish, so I will try to be concise. Religion is a form of your identity. But it is not the ONLY form. People will ask my name, the place from where I am, my date of birth, the same way, they will ask me my religion.

Of course, asking someone's place of living doesnt change someone's views about that person considerably, it does change however. In India, we are so much used to 'categorisation' that we virtually SEARCH for critarian to categorise people. If I tell someone that I am from Meerut, he will instantly reply - Meerut ke log aise hote hain, waise hote hain and so on. Same is with religion.

These categories look important for say 15 minutes when we suddenly encounter them some day, they dilute and fade away after that. Your friend will never introduce you to hers saying, Meet Sonia, She is Bhatia.

Lets accept it as a part of our identuty which isnt important for us right now, may be proves its importance at some later stage of life!

Who knows !!


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