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Reply To: Why I Disagree with Joe Campbell



My argument is even more basic than that. Of late, I have come to the conclusion that Hinduism itself is a fictitious construct. What we have is a hotch-potch of beliefs: pagan, monotheistic, atheistic and whatnot.

I find each of these beliefs fascinating. However, Campbell’s assertion of an overarching philosophy for the whole is erroneous. It is based on the Enlightenment Era fiction of the “Vedic Civilisation”.

While we should study the Upanishads, Campbell makes the mistake of marking it as the heart of Indian philosophy. I would say it is only a part of an impossibly varied whole.

So what you call as “opposition” to the standard is opposition only if one accepts the other as standard. I do not.

India had a pluralistic society at odds with itself. The so-called “tolerance” was never there. Each group was intolerant of others.

And the poisonous caste-system is what still defines our society. And this is not directly related to the four Varnas, as correctly said by Thapar. But untouchability and caste hierarchy is undoubtedly the product the Vedic appropriation of the subcontinent’s culture.

We need to dismantle, deconstruct, destruct and rebuild.