This happened a few days back.... I was chatting with my friend when a friend of his, who was in the background till then chipped in to the conversation. We were talking about food, and my friend was telling a particular place was better because they served more quantity of non vegetarian items with food when compared to other places. But he had considered egg dishes as non veg (omelet or "aamplate", as they say it in my place). I told him never to consider egg as non veg because the cost of egg is considerably less than chicken or mutton and a dish will also cost considerably less than when even compared to vegetarian dishes. At that moment my friend's friend, whom I am meeting for the first time barged in with his opinion. "Ey, egg is non veg yaar, don't tell it as veg."
A little background info now. My friend had told me before itself that this guy is a very nice chap, but he never stops talking, will talk more on religion and compel you to pray and do things like that. So I was kind of expecting to have a showdown with him sometime soon...
"I was telling about the economy of non veg, don't bring in religion now." I retorted.
Thus started a discussion on religion which went on into topics like significance of religious scriptures, benefits of prayer, about belief....
He was telling that we should not fall into materialistic pleasures and should live a life of spiritual uplifting by doing good things like prayer, meditation. We got our life as a human after countless lives of many animals and we have to be busy with escaping from this world to a world of endless pleasures and stuff like that. He also told about the ever living soul. And if we eat non veg you will become like a lion.
I was considerably happy hearing the last thing. I always have a liking and admiration for creatures like lions, puma, vultures....
He asked, "Who are you?"
I gave my name and permanent address. He was baffled for a moment and then tried to correct me. It seems I am an eternal soul who manifests itself in my body, whatever that means...
"That is YOUR belief." I replied.
"There is a chance that, it may not be right."
"Have you ever read Githa?"
"So you are arguing with just some bookish knowledge."
"Githa, Bible, Quran and such scriptures are not books. They are the truth."
"Again that is your belief. I need not believe that."
"But that is truth."
"How can you be so certain? A Belief can never be truth. Only knowledge can be true."
"We are on a constant search for that knowledge."
"Till you possess that knowledge, you are just believing and not certain. So you have no right to tell me what to follow. Because there is a scope for error."
From then onwards it was my show. I told him that I have read Githa, Quran, Bible and several books on religion like some works of Vivekananda and such things.(Actually that is half truth. I have read a few books on religion, but in an argument what counts is how much your opponent feels you knows. And I scored there. He really believed it.) That is the ground work, and then my mind should process it and the ultimate knowledge will come eventually from my inside. If you go on searching you will never find it. Do as your heart says. And one fine day if you are fit for it the answer will come from yourself. I mentioned the famous quote, the only real Christian in the world was crucified. So why we have to be phony Christians, Muslims or Hindus if we are able to make our own genuine private religion?
The last nail on the coffin was the famous quotation from J Krishnamurthy. "Freedom from the known." I told him about his philosophy, which says no one should follow him or any one in that case blindly. Know yourselves, otherwise you will be a believer life long....
He never came near me after that till today.......