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From: krish (
Date: Mon Apr 14 1997 - 07:28:24 PDT

<I guess the answers I am expecting is what should I do to stop my friend
converting. Or is it not my business at all.
Though I understand your feelings, ypu must think more carfully.
Suppose he was converting from some other religion to Hinduism.
Will you be happy?
In some ways, I do feel bad that one seemd to jump at a new
religion because it is useful. Such a pracice is common in India
especially among the poorer people who look to GOD to solve
all their Dukkha ( I use the word in the context of Buddhism.)
Prayin or visiting any shrine in the hope of overcoming a
particular probelm is in vogue. My relative goes to Sri
Vaishanvi temple in Kashmir or Tirupathy Balaji or Lady of
Lourdes in France hoping to cure her illness.
Unless one offers a positive alternative, it is better to leave
them alone. It is quite sililar to other actions we follow.
I married a Westerner and I am sure many of my relatives and
orthodox friend felt it was a dreeaful thing to do. But i
sure found the best mate and feel it was the only great
thing I did. Certain things are personal.
But it is diffcult not to prseltize.If you have a good way
( say a hot stock), you want to share it with friends.
Hinduism is a rational religion and does not depend on
prayers and rewards, though many of our prayers do promise it.
I think they are mere palliatives for us to calm down. I
suggest you read the excellent essay by Radhakrishnan in
"Constructing a Life Philosophy an examination of alternatives"
edited by David L. Bender, Greenhaven Press. Radhakrishnan's
essay Hindu View of Life may be available elsewhere too. The book
has other essays on other relgions and atheism too. Belief
reinforeced with understanding provides a stonger bind. Finally,
it is your own mind and thought that matters. 
Krishna Praba