Saturday, February 27, 2010

A Very Shameful Day in India: M F Hussain surrenders Indian citizenship

It never made to headlines and today the news was also hidden among the euphoria in the aftermath of one of those rare budgets after which the Sensex didn't dip. Amidst the 'India Shining' rave party it seemed so insignificant that one of India greatest artistes and painters had to surrender his citizenship at an age of 95 because he never felt secured in his motherland.

Yes, I'm speaking about M F Hussain, undoubtedly the most illustrious of the modern day painters who have retained India's position in the international art scene. What is his crime? He has painted Saraswati in nude and hence has a number of cases slapped against him by a bunch of idiots. And not only that, our system has accepted all such baseless cases and wants to try a 95 year old person for being creative. It's well accepted that Indians are an argumentative lot, but that doesn't mean that Indian judiciary will entertain each and every such frivolous case when there's already a huge backlog of rape and murder cases. As long as any act doesn't cause any security threat to the nation or any loss of material and/or respect to the nation or any particular individual, how can such cases be entertained? (By the way the cyber law on pornography and obscenity has been recently changed and Savita Bhabhi is back. So I believe Indian judiciary is going in the right track). More to it, Husaain also has threat on his life, properties and creations and our government doesn't find enough reason to ensure the security of one of her most prodigal sons.

Wow, what a hypocrisy when I've been chanting "Kucha yuga shobhita muktaa haare" towards the end of the Anjali (prayer offerings) on the day of Saraswati Puja since ever. My seven year kid has been also chanting the words, may be, for the past two three years, off course without knowing the meaning. I never felt it necessary for him to know each and every word of the Saraswati Vandana (Sorry guys, the link is in Bengali).

Neither has anyone in Bengal (or elsewhere where this particular Saraswati Vandana is chanted on a Saraswati Puja day) thought it necessary for kids to know the exact meaning. For the matter of fact no one ever bothers what mantras are being read out by the priest during the marriage or the naming ceremony or any where else. Sanskrit has ceased to be the spoken language of people in India more than 2000 years back and very few people have known Sanskrit since very long. But when these mantras were first composed much more people knew Sanskrit and I'm sure they would have objected to any obscene or perverse or derogatory word used for any Indian or Hindu deity. But I'm not aware of any such objection to "Kucha yuga shobhita muktaa haare" which precisely means "boobs adorned with a garland of pearl". When worn in the neck such a garland is known as necklace - I don't know if this would be called a booblace!! Whatever be it, some one in the antiquity did find it very aesthetic and perfectly normal to worship not only the divinity, but also the extra ordinary physical beauty of the Deity of art and culture and education. I'm not sure, but I don't think the physical beauty of any other Hindu deity is adored or worshipped in this way. Perhaps the composer of the hymn or the Mantra felt it necessary to refer to the naked beauty of a woman body because we're here worshipping the Goddess of art. One of the most wonderful creations of the nature is no doubt the body of a woman with all her artistic curves cleavages. All along the ages people were always fascinated with this wonderful creation. Hence why shouldn't we worship the supreme from of art that the nature has created for us? So when we can worship the naked beauty of Saraswati then why can't it be depicted by an artiste? Where is the freedom of speech and expression? It's a matter of great pride that an Indian, Muslim by birth, has taken so much interest in a Goddess of a different religion and has depicted Her exactly in the way she used to be in the ancient times when India had made perhaps the greatest advancements in art and literature and other areas of creative sciences.

I find it so ridiculous that many people claim to dictate the guidelines of Indian culture. It's shocking that people belittle our culture which is by far the most pragmatic and the most liberal one to be found anywhere in the world. We not only worship the breasts and put pictures of woman anatomy on the walls of temples, but we also worship the very moment of joy and ecstasy when a new life is created, the moment when a man and woman has orgasm - that's exactly what the Shiva Linga symbolizes. So when women rub the linga with milk (symbolizing the semen that overflows after orgasm) there's no problem, but if anyone paints a picture of Shiva having sex with Parvati that becomes a big issue? That's really ridiculous!!

I hope these silly people better read more about India and about Indian culture before commenting on it.


Anonymous said...

Mr Sudipto, Milk, Curd, Honey, Sugar, Ghee are considered pure form of food items that can be used for religious purpose.

So when these are used for those purpose, they do are in no way to represent semen flowing off a ShivaLinga.

During Death of a Hindu person, a "pind" (a inverted Cup shaped rice block) is used for ceremonial purpose. Thus is one is pouring Milk, Curd or other items a pind (which if u are Hindu u would do upon dmise of your mother, Wife) do u seem to suggest it could mean pouring of Semen on her breast or milk flowing from her breast?

Please get you facts straight and know your religion.

Sudipto Das said...

Thanks for your comment. BTW, I'd have appreciated if you didn't conceal your identity. If you've seen my postings I stringy believe in Argumentative Indians and any argument is welcome in my site. I publish anything sent to me. But it makes much more sense to the readers if your identity is also known.

Yes, I did check my facts before commenting. Yes, milk, honey, curd etc are considered pure and have been mentioned since the Vedic times. But milk used in other religious acts and using it on Shiva Linga are totally different. Also n none other cases you rub milk on anything.

Neither Shiva nor the Linga are Vedic concepts and might be partially pre-Vedic with later Vedic additions when thoughts had further matured in India. Please don't interpolate or extrapolate things. Please find out from original Sanskrit materials (if you know Sanskrit) about the origin of the concept of Shiva Linga. I found it just wonderful to find out how matured people could have been when the concept of Shiva Linga would have firs emerged. That's what I'm proud about - no other culture was so much advanced and matured in thoughts in those ages of antiquity - though the concept of Siva Linga would have come much later than the Vedas.

And if you could rad Bengali you could read the link where the entire Sarasati Pranam Mantra is mentioned and yes, we do worship Satawati's "kucha". Please refer to Monier William' Sanskrit English dictionary ( for the meaning of "kucha" and also the root "kuch" to confirm what it means. Here again I'm just thrilled to find out the open mindedness and the clarity of thoughts of people in ancient times (though this would also be a much much later composition than the Vedas, might be in the later Puranic times). I'm also shocked that when people few thousands years back were so advanced in their thoughts why are we so prejudiced and backward in thinking now? The very stuff of our culture that makes me proud (the clarity of thought and the really progressive thinking) is misinterpreted so badly!!

Kamalesh said...

Here is my view Sudipto. It does not matter what is written in the scriptures. When a common man like me goes and bows to the shivalinga or mata saraswati we do not think in terms of body parts we are worshiping. We bow to the force above that alone knows our cause of being and without which we have no cause in existence. So when these "intellectuals" go overboard in their dissemination to hurt the feelings of the common man, they should be prepared to bear the brunt. Your intellectual ego can only carry you this much. He is an utter barbarian for hurting the sentiments of common hindus and he has been delivered justice.

Gita said...

Well, what you were chanting is a slok or prayer or a pure emotion by a Devotee and NOT a mantra. The prayer was accepted in old times, that is why it became a prayer of many too. Present times we even ban showing off certain things in movies, perceptions of many of current times is different. Things which were spiritual, life giving, praise worthy are mere sexual objects. Perceptions change according to times. So Mr Hussain should have considered the perceptions of time we live in. If his intention, which he alone knows ...if is right, then he is right. But if his intention is like many others who want to put other religions down, then he is wrong.

arpita nandi said...

@kamlesh ji
I completely agree with you. We bow down to the supreme strength represented in the idol when we pray!But then, when hussain saab had painted that picture of Saraswati ji in the nude, where was this very sentiment? why couldn't ppl see the divinity, instead of creating a ruckus???

jayendrasingh Rawal said...

u should have to call him personally to draw nude painting of ur own family members
u just try this then u will get answer why
they lodge complaint

Jayendrasingh Rawal said...

look at ur name it confirms itself that u r "stupid" no need to tell any more.......