Nick H wrote:Would it be the Abrahamic Chomsky? It's another favourite word of shankarank's that I find hard to understand in context.
Is it a synonym for Western? Or does it indeed relate to the subtle influences that the customary religions of our land have on us, whether we subscribe to them or not. This is a tough job to unravel, especially if that influence (or influences: it covers at least three major religions and a huge area of the world housing many cultures) is viewed through the lens of yet another religion.
NickH, your query was more respectful than Suresh's and hence I owe you a respectful answer. I don't know your religious identity or if you are a cosmopolitan world citizen that adopted Chennai as a home etc etc. - does not matter for this conversation.
When I mean Abrahamic - I mean the concept of God as an external entity outside of the world that governs the world and after Judaism , Christianity improvised ( I should rather say replaced with intent to purge the older) further , with the definition of original sin - that all of humans are sinners waiting to be saved and so on. This "God" conceptualization many people consider conceptualized as male - but there are revisionist attempts also, especially in Islam to define it as formless etc.
The separation in terms of secular happened precisely because of some inherent issues felt by many in this - I believe.
This is played against Indian context by arguing that the concept of Divinity is varied here in India - i.e. like everybody here in India is not the puritannical monist etc. But there are encodings of a more general/or should I say nuanced idea of that in various forms.
The Guru - Sishya tradition itself would be problematic at that point. How can I have a reverential relationship with another sinner?
Smt. Anita Ratnam's speech - she blirts out - mAta , pitA, Google deivam - and the tone implies the immense stressful fight against concept of Divinity encoded in Indian culture.
Gopalakrishna Gandhi on his tirukkuraL exposition here: https://youtu.be/2sF71PDPgAc?t=310 feels that tension too - to maneuver around the reverence of G.U. Pope - he tries to triangulate by rejecting: falling at ones feet, Indian idea of devotion and tries to derive a new semantic of human respect etc.
There is a formal term for this: Difference Anxiety!
So a working definition of Abrahamic we could use here is as I have laid out above. The Indian version of divinity is encoded in the name of our beloved RSachi - Sachidanand, I figure his full name is.
But you will have to read some thinkers - you can call me the mouth piece of one such - whose name would send this forum into a tizzy again. I am surprised that nobody taunted me with that question! But I get taunted name dropping Chomsky however. For the fear of giving the former publicity??