Yesterday I began reading “Holy Warriors – A Journey into the Heart of Indian Fundamentalism by Edna Fernandes and I’m hooked already.
Here is the blurb from the inside cover:
An eye-opening exploration of India’s incendiary religious mix – based on a series of face-to-face encounters with all flavours of the faithful, the fervent and the fanatical.
Home to all the major religions, India is also, inevitably, host to virtually every type of religious fanatic. No other nation has witnessed as much proselytization or heard as many war cries in the name of God as India. For centuries, Hindus, Christians, Sikhs and Muslims have waged bloody wars, sought violent conversion and declared jihad against their enemies, as their religions have been hijacked by the forces of fundamentalism.
In “Holy Warriors”, British-Indian journalist Edna Fernandes travels to the country’s recent and past theatres of religious extremism – from Kashmir to Gujarat, Punjab to Goa – to meet the generals and foot soldiers of communal wars who assert their faith in rhetoric and rage. Theirs are stories of bigotry and bloodshed, insecurity and despair, but Fernandes listens with understanding, tolerance and a deft sense of humour, and paints a uniquely vivid and clear-sighted picture of a country divided by dogma.
As someone who is deeply interested in the relationships between Hindus and Christians both locally and globally I am finding Holy Warriors is a truly fascinating read. Its a bit week on the “why” of Indian fundamentalism, but so informative in so many other ways that I just can’t put it down.
Holy Warriors, by Edna Fernandes – A portrait of India that draws on its fundamentalist fringes – Reviewed by Guy Mannes-Abbott [The Independant]
Holy Warriors by Edna Fernandes – Reviewed by D’Souza, Avelino [Goanet]
Holy Warriors: A journey into the heart of Indian fundamentalism by Edna Fernandes – Meera Nanda [New Humanist]