NOTE: A few links are not working as we failed to transfer the information from our old site foundation for pluralism to the new Center for Pluralism. We are working on it and hope to restore the links to pictures and videos soon.
Event: 18th Annual Holocaust and Genocides Event Time: Sunday 6:00 PM EST on January 29 What: Pray for the victims of the Holocaust, Genocides, ethnic cleansing, Massacres, lynching, forcible evictions, bulldozing of homes, and oppression of people. Particularly pray for those not from your religion, caste, nationality, or ethnicity.
Holocaust continues to trouble us. The disgusting supremacist attitudes of Hitler led him to murder 6 million Jews in the most painful and sadistic ways. All of us, as minorities and powerless majorities, have gone through harassment, persecution, lynching, massacres, ethnic cleansing, and genocides with no exception. If it ever crosses our mind that it was the Jews, not us, then we have a problem; we need to clean up our hearts and minds. The Holocaust and genocide are not the problems of a particular group; they are problems of humanity. We must learn to stand up for the rights of others; in the end, we will be the beneficiaries of a secure world.
If the people around me are not secure, I will not be secure, and it behooves me to make sure others around me are secure.
Martin Luther King Jr., “Injustice anywhere is a threat to Justice everywhere. We are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied in a single garment of destiny. Whatever affects one directly affects all indirectly.”
One of the most enduring images imprinted on my mind since I was a little boy was the image of Jews lined up in front of a trench and shot in from the back. The looks on their faces were probably asking us; you are my neighbor; what will you do about it? But they did not beg us to help them; that helplessness on their faces continues to haunt me.
All bad things should motivate us to take action to repair the world; at least, we must do our share. I do my part by commemorating the Holocaust and genocide by bringing in people of different faiths and no faith to reflect on the horror unleashed on fellow humans. We have been doing this since 2006, when the United Nations proclaimed it in 2005; until then, only the Jewish people commemorated the event in Synagogues and Holocaust Museums. We were the first non-Jewish group to start the program.
The purpose of this event is education, information, and activism. We hope to learn and acknowledge our failings and commit to saying, “Never Again.” If we don’t stand up for the rights of others, why should anyone stand up for us?
Please note that in the last 17 years, we have covered many genocides, massacres, and grim ethnic cleansing events, and we intend to cover them all in the coming years. It is an all-inclusive event. We also acknowledge all the known and unknown Genocides and massacres through common prayers.
This year, we will do a silent commemoration on Sunday, January 29, at 6 PM EST. I request you to spend at least 10 minutes quietly reflecting on all horrors humans have unleashed on each other. Let your thoughts dwell on finding solutions to current events and preventing future events. Please do share your thoughts in 2-3 minutes.
We hope you will walk out of the event with a genuine feeling of becoming a contributor toward building a cohesive world where no human has to live in apprehension or fear of the other.
At the Center for Pluralism, we are committed to spreading knowledge of the Holocaust and Genocide through interfaith and public events.
Currently, the Rohingyas of Burma, the Uyghurs of China, the Muslims of India, and the Ethiopians face a potential genocide. I cannot get my mind off the image where the Jews were staring at us with a question: Aren’t you going to do something about it?
Germany was bombarded to stop her aggression. Most Germans did not like what Hitler was doing but did not speak up. Had they spoken, many lives would have been saved, including their own.
Justice is a composite value of balance in society, the environment, within our body, and in our interactions with others to become a perfect cog in the wheel of life. There is not a single human out there who does not seek Justice. Indeed, even religions give us hope that if Justice is not served in this world, God will bring Justice to the criminals, and no one will go scot-free.
If we do not bring Justice, the problems will linger, shifting our energies from enjoying life to seeking Justice.
Over a Million, Rohingya Muslims live in horrible conditions in Bangladeshi camps, expelled from their homes in Burma. Thanks to the US administration for courageously placing sanctions on a few military generals under the Magnitsky act. The story is the same with Chinese Uyghur Muslims – No serious actions were taken to prevent the continuation of the genocides. Palestine, Ethiopia, Congo, and several other nations face mass killings without accountability. In Pakistan, Hindu girls are abducted and forced to convert to Islam – which Islam strictly prohibits. The shameless harassment, oppression, and lynchings of Ahmadiyya and Shia Muslims continue in Pakistan and other nations. In India, thousands of Christians were forced to convert to Hinduism under the threat of a Massacre.
Being an Indian, invariably, I am asked about the plight of Kashmiri Pandits (1990), the Massacre of Muslims in Jammu (1948), the Sikh Genocide (1984), the Bangladeshi Genocide (1971), the Gujarat Massacre (2002), Delhi riots (2020), Kandhamal Violence (2007) when Hindu Mobs destroyed 2906 Christians Homes. The persecution of Christians and Dalits and the lynchings of Muslims in India continue under Modi’s rule. Yes, we have addressed these issues in our programs in the last 17 years and will continue to address them as many as possible in the coming years. If you were to attend, you would have listened to it.
Millions of refugees are being created in Ukraine, and the United States is equally responsible for the deaths and destruction of Ukrainians. Instead of finding solutions to the conflict with Russia, we are equipping more arsenal to Ukrainians to fight, kill, and get killed. There was a wise man who said to turn the other cheek instead of aggravating the conflict. Had we done that, we would not have been responsible for the deaths in Ukraine.
PM Modi’s party in India is shamelessly taking advantage of the Kashmiri Pandits issue, and they have no sympathy for them except for talking. Mr. Modi’s party constantly blames the people (Muslims) in Kashmir for chasing out the Kashmiri Hindu Pandits. Shame on them; they had about 15 years of governance between Vajpayee and Modi, and all they did was blame others instead of shutting up and rehabilitating the Pandits. The Pandit issue must be seriously addressed, rehabilitate their homes and losses, and build a secure Kashmir for all Kashmiri people.
Mr. Modi is trained by the Hindutva* ideology. The founders of the RSS (Rashtriya Swayam Sevak) have all said that Hitler did the right thing to rid the Jews, and we must exterminate Muslims and Christians from India in the same way.
The Holocaust Museum, Genocide watch, Hindutva Watch, and several human rights organizations have issued statements about the impending Genocide of Muslims in India. Hindu* Religious organizations known as Dharam Sansads have called to kill 2 million (of the 220) Muslims to subjugate the rest to be second-class citizens (like Ferdinand did to Jews and Muslims in 1492*) to become Hindus or disappear. They have distributed nearly a million trishuls (pointed arrows) to start killing, and they also said to sharpen their kitchen knives as a last resort. The Modi government has not said a word to stop it, as if they want this to happen. Most Indians, like most Germans during the Holocaust, don’t like this, but they are afraid to speak. In the end, the reckless silence of the good Indians will bring suffering to all if Genocide goes on a full scale or civil war breaks out.
It is in the interest of Indians to stand up so that all Indians can live in peace and prosperity. If things are not brought under control, human rights violations continue, and religious freedoms are not restored, the United States is guaranteed to lose an ally; shame on us for pursuing failed policy after failed policy by putting all our eggs in the same basket. Biden admin can carry the recommendations made by its own agency, the USCIRF, and prevent a potential genocide in India and save India as our ally.
Suppose you cannot stop the oppressors or tyrants. In that case, the least you can do is speak up or even silently pray for the victims and pray for a cohesive world where you and I can feel secure about our faith, ethnicity, caste, nationality, or other uniqueness. God bless his creation. May we be blessed with the boldness to speak the harsh truths for a secure world.