Book Review Of Shashi Tharoor: Why I Am A Hindu? | Must Read a Book tell us difference the between Hinduism and Hindutva

Hello Everyone,
                         Today I'm going to talk about the person who himself a genius and need not to introduce. A single man with lots of work.,Dr. Shashi Tharoor is an Indian Politician, writer, speaker and former International Diplomat..Shashi Tharoor is serving as a Member of Parliament from Thiruvanantpuram, Kerala since 2009.

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Dr. Shashi Tharoor is an eloquent speaker and has participated in many debated across all over the countries, As well as he has written about 18 books till now. And Among 18, I'll talk about "Why I Am A Hindu?"

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So basically this book is divided into Three Parts:
(i)My Hinduism
(ii)Political Hinduism
(iii)Taking Back Hinduism

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Firstly, Dr. Tharoor describes that he written this book for two main reasons. The first was to try and understand for himself, and for whoever else was interested, the extraordinary faith wisdom and virtues of faith he has lived for over six decades, a faith that he has tried to absorb through beliefs and practices handed down to him by his Father and others, his own observations, as well as an-extensive reading of the scriptures in translation and numerous scholarly treatise.

The second reason he wrote this book to show that the intolerant and often violent forms of Hindutva that began to impose themselves on the public consciousness of Indians in the 1980s went against the spirit of Hinduism, that most plural, inclusive, eclectic and expansive of faiths.

The Book is telling the actual difference between Hinduism And Hindutva. The Concerns in the book is actually for those who knows Dr. tharoor's writing, have been around for quite sometime the Great Indian Novel now 31 years old and its concerned the Dharma was explicit in his novel write and he spokes about some detail about Hindu-Muslim violence and accompanied the Ramshila-Pujan and so on before the rise of RamJanma Bhoomi movement.

Dr. Tharoor's alluded to his own Hinduism, Five years after the destruction of Babri Masjid. These are all concerns that he has expressed in different ways in both fiction and Non-Fiction in his writing.
According to Dr. Tharoor, If we look at Hinduism as a faith and then look at Hindutva, the later it is politically Ideology that is essentially is well described as a religion.

Somehow, on the backs of Hindutva Political Ideology, one is found whole bunch of people arrogating them to themselves, the rights to tell of others and there he thoughts to fight backs and push back to against it. And the useful things an an intellectual exercise was to do so within the faith because it suits the interest of Hindutva brigade to portray this fundamental argument as being one between Hindus and Godless secularist. Well Infact there is a more fundamental argument between Hinduism itself which he described in faith (Tharoor's faith)  and Dr. Tharoor has his own views and it is not the view of Hindutva Brigade.

This book contains many lines which is from Rig vedas and Bhagwat Geeta and some sloks in Sanskrit which also translated into English as well. The book start with great souls of Hinduism and the lecture of Swami Vivekanand and Adi Shankara was not merely a philosophical thinker who reconciled the doctrines and traditions of the ancients with a robust interpretation for the future.

Book also describing how both Jainism and Buddhism is related to Hinduism and how it become the form of Hinduism. And also book is railing the condition of India at the time of Muslim invaders like Chengiz khan, Mahumud of Ghazni and Mohd. Ghori , they all looted the temple like Somnath temple, Virandavan Shri-Krishna Janm Bhumi temple and abducted many Hindu women's.

The impact of Muslim invasions, and the proclivity of some Muslims warlords to attack temple for their treasures and demolish them in the process, as well as the inclination of some conquered people to adopt the religion of their conqueror, made the needs for renewal and revivcal of Hidu faith all the more urgent after the 11th century, when Ghazni's success had rung the alarm bells.

Whereas book also containing the bhakti movement of the people of different religion like Ramanuja, Kabir Das, Tulsi Das, Mira Bai, Lalleshwari(Lalla Rukh) and Blind Surdas. Here Dr. Tharoor tries to explained us that if we had trust in God then he'll never let us fail.
As Mirabai has immense believe in God Krishna her husband tried to poision her, but miraculously the poision turned into honey as she drank it, and she danced in ecstasy before her adored lord. As one of her hymns declares with the sense of abandonment ans ecstatic devotion for which she is known: Tying anklets upon her feet, Mira dances in Ecstasy. People say Mira has gone mad.
Her Mother-in-law says she disgraced the clan, The Rana(Mirabai's Husband) sent her a cup of poison, which Mira laughingly, drank. And nothing happened to her. This is belief, this is faith..

The Book also deals with the thoughts of Raja Ram Mohan Roy, who founded the Brahmo-Samaj and after him a dynamic Hindu sage, Swami Dayanand Saraswati established the Arya-Samaj.

Hinduism not just a religion, but the very way of life worth emulating. Briefly delving on the probable origins of Hinduism, the challenges it faced all along its many millennia-old existence, the ways in which it overcame those challenges and the innumerable saints and holy personae that stand as shining beacons for all the virtues that Hinduism is all about. Ironically, Mr. Tharoor makes you feel proud about being Hindu, more than all the antics and assertions of the so-called saviors of the ‘Hindutva’ brigade.

I loved the first part of the book. It is well researched and various references quoted really brought out my beliefs in a new light, the way I was taught about them and how it seemed to be confided in today.
The basic quality of the book is that it maintained its neutralism without taking sides. Hinduism could be talked more as a culture than as a religion is a conclusion I reach as I flipped pages ahead.
Freedom of belief and excising faith is duly a personal call and contributing factors could be the land you are born in and the household you are brought up but how you approach to the divine is a connection and a journey taken by you.
I could resonate with most of the thoughts presented in the book and also could appreciate many of the references made of different beliefs.

Whereas, the second part of the book are used by politician Shashi Tharoor, who uses it as a canvas to paint a poor – many times, correctly so – picture about his political opponents, especially those belonging to the Hindutva brigade. Starting from the patriarchs of RSS, Golwalkar and Savarkar, who used hatred for another religion to fuel the passion for their own, touching upon the somewhat sensible life of Deen Dayal Upadhyay, to the present day leaders of BJP, who rode upon paranoia and hatred of a huge scale to attain their political gains, Shashi Tharoor has ‘immortalized’ everyone with his systematic arguments against their narrow ideologies, setting them against the all-encompassing backdrop of Hinduism.

As he strongly condemned BJP in his book and told that BJP's priciples is provoking and evoking the people in the wrong way. As he mentioned the riots of Gujarat (2002), after that riots BJP's then Prime Minister Atal Vihari Vajpayee was going to ask a resignation from Narendra Modi, but due to Sangh, he didn't found himself able to do so..And Narendra Modi got another chance in 2007 and 2012 in Giujarat and he became the Chief Minister of Gujarat with full majority.. And Later on he played the trump card of Hindutva for 2014 lok-sabha election and Modi-wave came and all India supported BJP and first time in a history of lok-sabha a ruling party has no muslim MP's in a parliament.

Dr. Sahshi Tharoor also condemning the thoughts of Yogi Adityanath and described him thinking as a small and fallen. As Yogi Adityanath made Anti-Romeo squad and called Taj-Mahal against the Hindu-Civilization.

What it is hard to believe is that people claiming to be abiding by the values of a religion fail to realize the lines between segments of their beliefs toe in with secularist, to not be allied with any particular religion or spiritual matters.

Overall, it is good to see the big picture of both sides and get different perspectives about how one can perceive Hinduism and Hindutva. Also, one can put distinction to a Hindu Communist and a Hindu who is also a Communist.

Conclusion :

*As a Hindu, I can say when people tell me 'Garv Se Kaho Ki Tum Hindu Ho' that I am proud to be Hindu, but in what is it that we are to take pride? I take pride in the openness, the diversity, the range, the lofty metaphysical aspirations of the Vedanta; of the various ways in which Hinduism is practised, eclectically, and of its extraordinary acceptance of differences.

*I am a Hindu , and I am Nationalist, bit I am not a Hindu nationalist. My nationalism is unquestioningly, all-embracingly, Indian.

*Survival is the best revenge, rather than reprisal; undoing the wrongs in different era through new wrongs in a different context only compound the original sins.

*The Hinduism that I know understands that faith is a matter of hearts and minds, not bricks and stones. "Build Ram in your hearts" is what Hinduism has always enjoined: If Ram is in your heart, it would matter very little where else He is, or is not.

*I feel that it is alright to think that Hinduism as a way of life is great but it’s not alright to think that only Hinduism ‘as we understand it’ is superior to any other way of life. It is very important now, more than it ever was, to disconnect Hindutva, the political ideology, from Hinduism, which is a way of life.

So here we finished the review of Shashi Taroor's book (Why I Am a Hindu)..I hope it will help you to know the difference between Hindutva and Hinduism.

You can comment me whatever else you want me to add in this blog,, i'll appreciate your thoughts, view and comments..



  1. Replies
    1. thank you so can also share it with your friends and colleagues..

  2. Genuinely loved reading. Keep going

  3. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  4. Great article , very well explained , I am fond of books , will definitely read the book once I will finish my current book .

  5. Shashi Tharoor single personality in Indian politics with multiple talent. No one can chase him for his knowledge in English language.

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