The recent events in Paris are but a fresh reminder that we live in a world that is in turmoil, hate-filled and dark.
In India, a man is killed because it is suspected that he has a certain meat in his refrigerator. Our minds have become so twisted that the life of a human being created in the image of God is given less value than that of an animal. Innocent Dalit children are burnt alive. Is there hope in this hate-filled world?
This month, we remember the death of Babasaheb Ambedkar. A revolutionary thinker, he will forever be remembered as the father of the Indian Constitution.
Yes, I am talking of the Lord Jesus Christ. He was a revolutionary because he taught us to be countercultural. Where it is natural to hate our enemies, his message was to forgive them. Even further, he taught us to bless our enemies and pray for those who persecute us.
In a country like India, where atrocities are committed in the name of caste, it is easy to hate and to want revenge. But as Dr Martin Luther King, Jr, a follower of Jesus, said, “darkness cannot drive out darkness, only Light can. Hate cannot drive out hate, only Love can.”
If all the caste-based injustices end but we continue to harbour resentment, bitterness and hate for the wrongs done, then the cycle of hate will never be broken. When we harbour hatred, we are slaves to our emotions, and exchange one kind of slavery for another that is much worse and bears terrible consequences for our health and emotional wellbeing. If we want our country to be a place where our children can blossom in safety, we must seek reconciliation between castes.
In October 2014, FORWARD Press was attacked. The editor, my husband, was accused of promoting enmity between castes. He was also accused of being a Christian, as if being a follower of Jesus Christ was a bad thing. Yes, we are followers of Christ. And it is because of our belief, far from inciting hatred, we would love to see reconciliation, love and harmony between castes. It is also because of Christ’s teachings that we would like to see social justice done, and we lift up the cause of a majority that has long been silenced.
The decisions on what is to be published in FORWARD Press are not taken on the basis of our faith and religion alone. Those decisions are independently taken by the editorial team.
Many things published in the magazine are at variance with our different personal beliefs. As my husband says, the beauty of a magazine lies in the diversity of thoughts and ideas in it.
From personal experience, I know that forgiving someone is one of the hardest things to do. And I have only been able to forgive those who have hurt me because of the Spirit of Christ in me.
This month of December, when we celebrate Christmas across the world, I pray that each of you would take the first step to forgive those of upper or lower caste who have hurt you or your family, recently or for generations.
For a freer you, for a better India! Jai Hind.
Published in the December 2015 issue of the FORWARD Press magazine