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From: M K Sudarshan (
Date: Tue Aug 26 1997 - 10:45:19 PDT

Dear and revered Sri.Anbil Swamy,

I am in the preparatory process of dismantling my stuff here and hence do
not have a private e-mail address anymore. I am glad the last message
delivered to me was yours because a day's delay and I would not have
received your message and would have been oblivious of the almost virulent
feelings I seem to have aroused in the past week.I am glad I'm able to
respond to you so that you do not think that I duck responsibility for my
opinions expressed. My only regret is that I do not have the i-net resources
anymore to be able to face all the flak that you and other members have
thought it fit to pepper me with.

I can see that you have been uncharacteristicaly upset about what I have
said. So upset that you have chosen to say harsh things about me which you
otherwise would not like to.

I consider it my mistake to have couched my opinions in language intended
to be just "witty" but which I fear has come across the medium as facetious,
flippant and "downright insulting" as you say. I realise "humour" is not my
forte and I often misplace it. What would pass off nicely in the corporate
conferences would probably stink elsewhere. I agree and I am sorry for it.
Like a good batsman who cuts out "risky shots" from his cricketing
repertoire I guess I too shall cut out "witticisms" from my opinions
expressed especially through cyber-space.

This is an age for apology-making. The Japanese Emperor has said sorry to
the Chinese and Koreans for historical misdemeanours. The Queen of England
is now being asked to say sorry to the Indians for having occupied the land
after 300 years ! It would be utterly churlish and ill-mannered of me not to
tender my own for the "witticisms" that have not gone down well with you and
all others on the list.

Let me assure you and your members that no insult of any sort was intended.

As for the substance of what I said I am not convinced that all what I said
was objectionable and in fact I stoutly stand by it.

You unfairly and needlessly make me out to be some kind of a heretic
against SriRamanuja. I am not and I have said nothing to suggest that.I
strongly resent your innuendo. 

In plain "unhumorous" parlance, all that I said was in its true essence
SriRamanuja's teachings have a metaphysical plain and a secular plain; the
former, concerning itself with "world-view", does not PRIMA FACIE relate to
the way we lead our lives... yes, certainly, in the specific milieu of the
10th-century but not necessarily for all times to come; but in a LESS PRIMA
FACIE and more real way the "world-view" does impact on "life-styles" for
all times to come; a proper understanding of how (I was trying to say) may
not so easily or directly be acquired through his own writings as in my
opinion, it is definitely otherwise possible through diligent study of the
"itihasas" and "puranA-s". 

Just compare, Sri.Anbil Swamy, the sheer quantum of material that Sri
Ramanuja has written by way of philosophical commentary and how much he has
actually written by way of ethical commentary. The former clearly outnumbers
the latter. Which itself shows that Udayavar himself may have known that
with the passage of time and certainly after 1000 years, the tide of
societal and value changes would be comprehensible and intelligible to
people more easily in terms of the medium of "itihAsa/purAnA" rather than in
terms of a "period prescription" like, for instance, we know the "Laws of
Manu" are.    

What is wrong in the above view ? Tell me Sri.Anbil Swami ! Why do you
think it is suggestive of "self-contradiction" ? What is so "arrogant" and
"immature" about it? And what is heretical about it ? Why should the above
view of mine lead you to conclude that I arrogate to myself a status equal
to that great "AchAryA" ? Why do you paint me in such villainous colours for
merely voicing a view however distasteful it may be to you ? 

I have no really no wish to respond to other uncharitable comments made by
you, Sri Anbil Swamy. You say that you were wrong in your personal opinion
about me and that I am not the "true-SriVaishnava" that you thought I was.
Fair enough, if you want to condemn me without trial and due process, pls,
go ahead.

But let me tell you that I have not changed my impression about you one
bit... I still hold you in very high esteem in spite of all the "nice"
things you have had to say about me. It does not matter if in doing that I
continue to be un-Srivaishnavite !