Why Is India So Corrupt? Understanding Anna Hazare’s Corruption Show - Revelation Movement

WARNING: This article is not fit for family consumption. It is intended for mature readers.

Why Is India So Corrupt?
Understanding Anna Hazare’s Corruption Show

Vishal Mangalwadi

It was about 10 pm in Hawaii on Thursday 18 August, when Kamala informed me, “Anna Hazare just left Tihar Jail in Delhi. His procession is on its way to pray at the Gandhi Samadhi.”
This was the third unsolicited briefing from Kamala that day regarding Anna Hazare’s fast against corruption. She knew every detail about how he was forcing the government of India to accept his version of the Lokpal (anti-corruption Ombudsman) Bill, his arrest and release, his refusal to come out of the Jail except on his own terms, and now his march to pray at Gandhi’s grave before sitting at a fast, Gandhi-style.
“Has our government become just as bad as the British Raj that we need another Gandhi?” I teased Kamala. “You seem to be glued to the TV, as though this was a Cricket match.”
“I’m not!” she protested a bit embarrassed. “I’m telling you because my sister just called me.”
“Why is she glued?”
“She’s so mad at corruption that she wants to shoot every corrupt man, if she could.”
“But why? She’s always come across to me as a quiet, simple woman; why would she want to become a terrorist?”
“I can’t tell you,” said Kamala, “she made me promise her.”
That really aroused my curiosity: but to get Kamala to break her promise to her sister, I had to become seriously interested.
“Usha is enthused about Anna, because corruption has ruined her life.”
“She toiled for more than four years to complete her Ph.D. thesis on ‘Folk Literature and its Psychological Appeal.” After a whole day’s job as a junior lecturer, she cooked, put her family to bed, then read and wrote until she fell asleep. He husband hates the fact that for four years she has been more devoted to her Ph. D, than to him. He tolerated these years when his wife was in the home, but not really with him, in the hope that a doctorate will help her become a professor. But, now her own guide, to whom she was deeply devoted, has turned out to be a slimy snake.”
“What did he do?”
“That’s what I am not supposed to tell you.”
“Please do tell me, because I really want to understand why so many people are so excited about Anna Hazare and Baba Ramdev.”
“Usha read every book and journal her professor suggested. She visited pilgrim centers described in our folk literature. She wrote her thesis exactly as he advised. But he returned it with only negative comments. When she confronted him he said that it may take her four more years to get it right, unless he re-writes it for her. He said he didn’t have the time to help her during the day, but he could re-write if she came to his home after dinner. She went. He took her to his study next door. Inside was a little shrine with lamps and incense burning before a Shivalingam[i]. Hooded Kobras and Parvati were worshipping the lingam. The professor bowed before the lingam with deep piety . . . Usha followed his example . . . before they sat down facing each other.”
“The professor kept gazing at the lingam, so Usha also took a good look. Behind the lingam was a large photograph.”
“Do you recognize that temple?”
“Yes, that is Mylapore temple in Chennai.”
“This lingam is special because I brought it from there. Do you know that temple’s story?”
“Yes, Shiva and Parvati were sitting there.  A peacock came by and Parvati was distracted. Shiva got angry and cursed her: she became a peacock. Shiva was pleased only when Parvati began worshipping the Shivalingam morning and evening. Then he turned her back into a woman.”
“’Correct,’ said the professor. You’re researching folk literature; you know the legend; but have you learnt the lesson? I do not need to re-write your thesis. All I have to do is to re-write my notes on your thesis. Then you can get a Ph. D. within months.”
“So, what do I have to do, sir?”
“Learn from Parvati. Serve my lingam.”
“But sir, your wife is next door!”
“I’m a Brahmachari (celebate). Like Mahatma Gandhi I’ve renounced my marriage in search of self-realization. I’ve not touched my wife for ten years. She knows that this room is my shrine where I awaken my Kundalini[ii]. Those serpents represent Kundalini Shakti. My Parvatis come here to assist me in my quest. I help their pursuits.”
“But Sir, this is hardly Gandhian or holy.”
“You’d know how Gandhian this is if you take the trouble to Google Gandhi and Tantra[iii]. Gandhiji learnt Tantric tradition from Ramakrishna, Vivekananda, and Aurobindo. That tradition had gone underground due to foreign invasions, but it was kept alive by the very literature that you’ve been studying. I’m just making sure that you’ve actually learnt what you read.”
“But my husband will kill me. He is already frustrated that I am here and not with him.”
“Both of you have to learn from our Advaitic culture. You have to transcend this nonsense of husband-wife dualism. Parvati is worshipping Shiva’s lingam, but is she is his wife? He is a Brahmachari. She is his consort; his sexual-spiritual partner. This is what Gandhi was teaching all his assistants, including J P Narayan, whose wives slept with him. Sex has to be divinized. You are Brahma – not female or male. By awakening your Kundalini – your serpent power – and experiencing your true Self, you realize that you are one – complete. Both male and female are within you.”
“But sir, I came here to re-write my thesis . . .”
“But I called you here to make sure that you’ve really understood our religious literature, our gods, as well as our great men like Mahatma Gandhi. What’s a Ph.D. worth in folk literature, if you can’t be a Parvati? You know what I’m talking about. I’ll give you a few minutes to think and decide whether or not you want me to re-write my notes on your thesis.”
“The professor went into the bathroom. Usha heard the shower. She didn’t know what to expect next, or what to do. She raced up and down the room nervously, looking at the weird paintings. She was close to the entrance when the bathroom door opened at the other end of the room and the professor came out: totally naked! Usha feared that she might get raped; so she opened the door and ran out: confused and crying. She hasn’t told her husband: he’s so short tempered. She is hesitant to report or take legal action because the professor is highly respected. In any case, he will say that she is lying because he has been thorough in commenting on her thesis. She wants to kill him, but . . . what will happen to her children if she goes to jail? She’s traumatized. It’s because of this intense dilemma that Anna Hazare has caught her imagination.”
“But what would Anna’s Lokpal do for her or against the professor?”
“That’s what I am asking her. . . she understands . . . and it’s making her real mad. She’s frustrated. That’s why she’s glued to the TV. She has called me six times today, but I don’t know what to say. I was not supposed to tell you. But now that I have . . . what do you say I tell her?”
“Kamala! Usha’s problem is not a professor but a whole culture that he represents. He has no regard for her personal dignity and no respect for her honest hard work. Merit is irrelevant in the culture of corruption, only appeasement matters. Time is money, but our corrupt culture has no respect for the years that Usha has already put into that thesis.”
“So what do I tell her?”
“She has to steel herself for a battle that is much bigger than a corrupt professor or politician. He, like many of our politicians, is indeed following our great men and the gods that our sages created. They crafted our myths and legends – our folk literature – in their self-interest. Usha may not get a Ph. D., but her research has equipped her to expose the religio-cultural roots of our corruption far more effectively than Anna Hazare can.”
“What do you mean?”
“I do not know enough about Anna. His Brahmacharya (celibacy) may be better than Gandhi’s, but the professor is certainly following Mahatma Gandhi, who treated his women exactly the way the professor treats his wife and his devoted students. More than that, the professor is treating Usha, as Shiva treated Parvati. In order to eradicate corruption, we need a different Messiah: one who would not extract his ‘pound of flesh’ but sacrifice himself for our salvation. We need a Savior who is a shepherd, who would redefine our cultural idea of leadership as servanthood. A professor must serve his students, not exploit their vulnerability.”
“My sister needs straight forward advice, not religious mumbo-jumbo.”
“In that case please bear with my straight words: This campaign against corruption must force us to come to terms with the philosophical question: Are we God or are we sinners? Should we worship and appease our great men, or ask them to humble themselves and seek salvation from their sin?
“Martin Luther King Jr. followed Mahatma Gandhi’s terrible example of committing adultery. But the Bible taught him to repent of his sin. Mahatma Gandhi, in contrast, persisted in exploiting his women till the end, rationalizing his sin as an experiment to become God. If you want to save your sister from corruption, you have to save her from our gurus who pretend to be god. Socio-political corruption is a consequence of our inner sinfulness; our refusal to acknowledge that we are sinners, not God.”
“But what does corruption have to do with this theology?”
“Lord Thomas Babington Macauly, one of the greatest British historians of the 19th century, wrote that in the middle of the 18th century, the British East India Company was “a gang of public robbers.” Nominally the British rulers were Christians, but their rule in Bengal was “the rule of an evil genie.” Their rule then was as corrupt as the Congress and non-Congress rule today. Yet, no Gandhi, JP, or Anna opposed British corruption because our forefathers expected everyone who had power over others, to abuse it – to be corrupt. Just as they appeased corrupt gods and gurus, they accommodated and contributed to corruption of British officials.
“It was the biblical conscience of British evangelicals that transformed the British rule. Those who followed the Bible demanded that loving your neighbor as yourself meant that the British must give to India as clean a government as they want for themselves. It was Lord Macaulay himself who helped create the Indian “civil” Service –ICS, which became IAS (Indian Administrative Service).[iv]
“J P Narayan and now Anna Hazare have done a great service in opposing corruption. But they have done so only because they know that in 1947, India had inherited a clean government. Bible-believing Christians had demonstrated that corruption can be eradicated even within India. What Anna’s followers do not seem to remember is that the only cultural force that has ever given clean government to India is the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
“Up until the 1960s, to be an “educated person” meant to be a decent, honest person. That was because modern education came to India as an integral aspect of Christian mission – the mission to transform our worldview and character. Now, that education has been delinked with the Bible, education is producing men who are as corrupt as our gurus.  This is true not only in India, but also in the West. The Wall Street is corrupt because former Christian universities such as Harvard have been secularized and made incapable of cultivating moral character in their students.
“Usha has now learned the terrible truth about our religiosity. There is only one book that has ever created a clean and conscientious leadership in India. That book is the Bible. Usha needs to study it. Our cultural elite hate that book because it destroys spiritual elitism – Brahminism. It says that Brahmins and Shudras are equal because we are all sinners. It also tells us that we are equal because we are equally the objects of God’s love. One of the most famous verses in the Bible is, “For God so loved the world that he gave His unique son, so that whosoever believes in him may not perish but have everlasting life.” (John 3:16). The Bible explains how men fell into sin; can be saved from their sin; and become truly holy.
“A corrupt professor can be killed; a Lokpal can jail a corrupt minister, but the challenge is to change a culture that is making our educated people so immoral. This corruption will keep your sister backward. She is intelligent and diligent, but corruption will deny her opportunities. A delay in her Ph. D. means that she will lose seniority in her career . . . incapable, but corrupt people will advance beyond her.
“Usha has to find a spiritually that will free her from the shame and anger that come from suffering injustice. When the Lord Jesus took up his cross, he “endured the shame.” He called his disciples to take up their cross and follow him in their quest for the kingdom of God. He gave them the spiritual power to rejoice in tribulation, to love their enemies and to return good for evil. If Usha is to become an agent for transforming our culture, she has to be transformed in her own spirit first. Then she can change our culture by replacing our false gods with God’s truth and demonic spirits with God’s spirit.

Vishal Mangalwadi
Buenos Aires, August 26, 2011
(i) This article has been written as Introduction to my book, Why Are We Backward? To be published by Aspire Prakashan, New Delhi
(ii) In my book Truth and Transformation: A Manifesto for Ailing Nations I have a long appendix on corruption. This appendix is an abridged version of 75 pages on corruption in India published in Corruption Vs True Spirituality. The “True Spirituality” part is by Francis Schaeffer.

[i] Shivalingam – A stone shaped like a penis.
[ii] Psycho-sexual energy that supposedly lies dormant behind one’s sexual organs and needs to be awakened. In old age a male yogi usually needs the help of a young female.
[iii] See WAS GANDHI A TANTRIC? By Nicholas F. Gier, Professor Emeritus, University of Idaho. http://www.class.uidaho.edu/ngier/gandtantric.htm
[iv] The corruption in East India Company and how it was removed needs a major Ph.D. level study. I have done some preliminary work in (a) Missionary Conspiracy: Letters to a Postmodern Hindu (1995) and India: The Grand Experiment (1997).
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