Tuesday, December 1, 2020
Home Opinions Colour of divinity and the nasty politics by chameleon mainstream media

Colour of divinity and the nasty politics by chameleon mainstream media

While the rest of India was busy celebrating Makar Sankranthi and other festivals like Pongal, Lohri and Bihu, one MSM journalist from DNA, @rucha_sharma, wrote an article about how two Chennai based photographers were breaking stereotypes by depicting Hindu Gods and Goddesses in dark skin. The photographers being Bharadwaj Sundar and Naresh Nil from Slingshot Creations.

I had countered this puerile conjecture on twitter based on facts. However, unsurprisingly, the journalist in question decided to block me when she failed to counter facts and logic. So I decided to publish my rebuttal on a widely read public platform like OpIndia.

Rucha begins her article with factually incorrect assertion that :

“Even the gods and goddesses were not left out of this discussion since the day Raja Ravi Varma decided to depict Hindu deities, scenes from the epics like Mahabharata, Ramayana, or Puranas …. This possibly established that even the religious representation will lean towards fairness, even if Krishna, Ram, Shankar, etc were described as having darker skin tone.” 

She blames Hindus generically for their obsession with fair skin tone that they represent their Gods as fair-skinned. And the second assertion, that Raja Ravi Varma was particularly to be blamed for deliberately depicting even dark-skinned Gods in lighter shades.

Only if Rucha Sharma and her two “creative” Chennai based photographers had read Hindu scriptures, they would know that for us Hindus the divinity has no specific colour. We worship our Gods in various forms (and in formless Nirguna form too). The names, clothes, weapons and vaahanas of Gods represent various facets and therefore a simplistic binary interpretation as black and white is inaccurate and mal-intentioned.

Temples all over South India have pratimas made up of black stones only, be it Shri Krishna at Udupi, Sri Venkateshwar at Tirupati, Shri Rama at Rameshwaram or Devi Kanyakumari at the tip of Indian peninsula. But I will not limit my argument to south India.

Lord Krishna’s name itself as Shyam and Krishna indicate his dark-skinned body. Remember, the waning moon days are themselves referred to as Krishna Paksha in Hindu calendar. In two of the holiest temples north of Vindhyas dedicated to Sri Krishna – Nathdwara in Rajasthan and Jagannath Puri in Odisha, depict his skin tone as pitch dark. At Puri the contrast is more stark where the idols of fair-skinned Balarama and Subhadra are placed next to Krishna.

Vishnu, the preserver of holy Hindu trinity, is described as “megh varnam” (the one who is dark like rain laden clouds) in the most popular shloka dedicated to him.

And most Vishnu followers worship him every day in the form of dark “Shaligrama” stone.

And this is not limited to Vishnu or his avatars only – Lord Shiva is worshipped described as fair-skinned in the following hymn but is also worshipped as the dark-skinned form as Kaala – Bhairava in Ujjain, MP.

The photographer duo thought that they were doing a novel, path breaking social experiment by showing Durga as a dark coloured deity. Such ignorance is expected when the ‘cool dudes’ of Social Justice Warrior league don’t know that one of the forms of Navdurga (9 forms of Durga) is Kalraatri – the fierce blood thirty, demon vanishing Kali – the original feminist.

Later Rucha Sharma tried to change the goal post by claiming her article is not about religion. I would have bought her argument had she included, for example, the face of Jesus as reconstructed by some researchers. It was a far cry from the white Caucasian man he is now shown to be in most paintings.

Rucha also claimed how Raja Ravi Varma, the most famous Indian painter, was responsible for creating this cult of fair Gods and Goddesses. A simple google search would show you that it is a great affront to the legendary artist.

Raja Ravi Varma painted Hindu Gods in various shades and moods including painting Krishna as a dark-skinned boy when he meets Radha for the first time. Rama also appears as a dark-skinned man in his paintings when Rama comes across Sita before swayamvar.

So essentially we come back to the original question, who exactly is obsessed with fairness of skin if it isn’t the Hindu Gods themselves neither the painters like Raja Ravi Varma. Perhaps the culturally jaundiced eyes of some journalists and rootless uber cool photographers cannot find beauty in our culture and are forced to re-imagine the world through the eyes of social justice warriors.

Hopefully the readers can see through their shallow narrative and don’t fall for the self-shaming slogan  of “Indians are obsessed with fair skin”.

  Support Us  

Whether NDTV or 'The Wire', they never have to worry about funds. In name of saving democracy, they get money from various sources. We need your support to fight them. Please contribute whatever you can afford

Related Articles

Trending now

After Barkha Dutt failed to whitewash Khalistan supporter Deep Sidhu, Shekhar Gupta’s The Print picks up the pieces

Actor Deep Sidhu continues to refuse to call Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale a terrorist while he keeps participating in farmer protests

Father of Shehla Rashid files complaint against her saying she’s threatening him with life, accuses her of being involved in ‘notorious activities’

The father of the career-protestor-turned-politician Shehla Rashid claims the latter being involved in 'notorious activities'

Farmer group bats for ‘middlemen’, hails them as ‘service providers’ while scare-mongering about reforms in agriculture sector

Protesting farmers say that they are happy to pay commission to middlemen, claims new farm laws are not needed for their protection

What they never told you when they said India was the worst performing emerging economy

India’s economy contracted by 23.9%. For comparison, Brazil’s GDP contracted by 11.9% and Russia’s GDP by 8%. So, did they really do better than India?

Assam closes down temporary Covid-19 care centres, gears up to reopen elementary schools as pandemic gets under control

Assam has been witnessing reduced cases of Covid-19 with recovery rate of 98 per cent and the death rate of 0.46 per cent

Shiv Sena to organise Azaan recitation competition, party leader calls it as important as ‘Maha Aarti’

Shiv Sena is to bear the cost of the event and will also reward the contest winners.

Recently Popular

SFJ ads appear on YouTube offering $10m support for farmers, in return, wants Sikhs to join ‘Khalistan movement’: Details

Amid ongoing farmers’ protests in Punjab, Haryana, and Delhi, it is evident that Khalistani supporters have hijacked the protests and now, they are running ads on YouTube

Wife of late Wajid Khan writes on her sufferings in an inter-faith marriage, says anti-conversion law should be nationalised

Wife of late music composer Wajid Khan wrote how her husband and his family had been forcing her to convert to Islam after their marriage

Shiv Sena to organise Azaan recitation competition, party leader calls it as important as ‘Maha Aarti’

Shiv Sena is to bear the cost of the event and will also reward the contest winners.

Indian Idol contestant reveals how she faced opposition from conservative Muslim society as singing is ‘not allowed’

The Indian Idol contestant revealed how women in her society are looked down upon if they try to excel in any field.

Indian man proposes to his Australian girlfriend during Ind vs Aus cricket match, here is what happened next

While India's performance has been below par, netizens found happiness in the unusual proposal that became the highlight of the match.

His family called our children ‘illegitimate’ because I didn’t convert to Islam’: Late music composer Wajid Khan’s wife reveals

Wajid Khan's wife has stated to Times of India that the late music composer's family never accepted her wedding under the Special Marriages Act because she had refused to convert to Islam.

Fact-check: Is Prasar Bharati shutting down AIR radio stations in Kerala?

Prasar Bharati CEO took to Twitter to reply to allegations that AIR stations are being shut to cut down cost.

After Barkha Dutt failed to whitewash Khalistan supporter Deep Sidhu, Shekhar Gupta’s The Print picks up the pieces

Actor Deep Sidhu continues to refuse to call Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale a terrorist while he keeps participating in farmer protests

Pilibhit: 12-year-old boy escapes from madrassa alleging he was chained and tortured by his teacher

A 12-year-old boy was beaten by head of the Al-Jamiatul Razvia Madinatul Islam madrassa in Pilibhit after he tried to go home

Father of Shehla Rashid files complaint against her saying she’s threatening him with life, accuses her of being involved in ‘notorious activities’

The father of the career-protestor-turned-politician Shehla Rashid claims the latter being involved in 'notorious activities'

Private procurements from Adnai group helped eliminate middlemen and generate more income, reveals apple farmers from Himachal Pradesh

Apple Orchard manager Manjeet Singh Dhillon informed that Adani group had been purchasing apples from farmers since 2006.

Eight months after cutting water supply of migrants to drive them away in middle of pandemic, Arvind Kejriwal govt offers free water to protesting...

Delhi Jal Board VP and AAP MLA Raghav Chadha himself went to Burari to ensure water tankers are available for protesting farmers

‘Shaheen Bagh returns’: Netizens react as protesting ‘farmers’ served biryani at Ghazipur in New Delhi

Biryani at the ongoing farmers' protest brings back memories of the 'organic' Shaheen Bagh protests

Farmer group bats for ‘middlemen’, hails them as ‘service providers’ while scare-mongering about reforms in agriculture sector

Protesting farmers say that they are happy to pay commission to middlemen, claims new farm laws are not needed for their protection

Protests against farm laws are based on rumours and misinformation: PM Modi punctures holes in the propaganda surrounding farm laws

PM Modi noted, "The government is consistently addressing the fears and queries of farmers who are anxious about the government's decision."

Not ‘just a municipal election’, a defeat of TRS in the Hyderabad Municipal Elections will alter the political discourse of the state

Not just top BJP leaders, top TRS leaders are also campaigning hard for the GHMC elections, making it more than just a municipal election

Connect with us

245,563FansLike
491,269FollowersFollow
20,200SubscribersSubscribe