The Nepal Digest - April 10, 1998 (25 Chaitra 2054 BkSm)

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The Nepal Digest Sun Apr 10, 1998: Chaitra 25 2054BS: Year7 Volume73 Issue1
  Today's Topics:

          New Yorkers for the NECC
          Nepali News
          Re: XP family in Nepal
          The journal SINHAS: New Issue
          International Women's Day, 8 March 1998
          School in Nepal
          Nepalese Flag
          Technological Leapfrog and the Race for Learning
          Survey on Fm Station for Nepal Digest readers
          The Problems of Chritianity
          Summer Nepali Language Program

 * TND (The Nepal Digest) Editorial Board *
 * -------------------------------------- *
 * *
 * The Nepal Digest: General Information *
 * Chief Editor: Rajpal JP Singh *
 * (Open Position) *
 * Editorial Columnist: Pramod K. Mishra *
 * Sports Correspondent: Avinaya Rana *
 * Co-ordinating Director - Australia Chapter (TND Foundation) *
 * Dr. Krishna B. Hamal *
 * Co-ordinating Director - Canada Chapter (TND Foundation) *
 * SCN Correspondent: Open Position *
 * *
 * TND Archives: *
 * TND Foundation: *
 * WebSlingers: Pradeep Bista,Naresh Kattel,Robin Rajbhandari *
 * Rabi Tripathi, Prakash Bista *
 * *
 * +++++ Food For Thought +++++ *
 * *
 * "Heros are the ones who give a bit of themselves to the community" *
 * "Democracy perishes among the silent crowd" -Sirdar_Khalifa *
 * *
****************************************************************** Date: April 3rd, 1998 To: the Nepal Digest <> Subject: New Yorkers for the NECC

NECC is the first attempt in North America to establish a center dedicated to celebrating, preserving and promoting Nepali heritage-our language, culture and everything else that identify us as a Nepali-in this part of the world. NECC envisions to be a center serving the community of Nepalis and friends of Nepal all around the US and beyond.

Recognizing the fact that NECC is an idea and an institution that transcends all boundaries, Nepali living in and around NYC are proud to be the first community outside of DC to make a collective contribution to this project destined to inspire similar projects elsewhere in future.

New Year Celebrations and fund-raising dinner to benefit the Nepal Educational and Culture Center - Hosted by Nepli Organizations in greater New York metro area

Saturday April 11, 1998 6:30 PM

Ukrainian National Home 140 2nd Avenue (between 8th and 9th street) Manhattan, NY

Program: Snacks and cash bar, cultural program, dinner and dance. Donation: Adult $30, Children ages 6-12 $18, Childredn under 6 none. Students may request a $25 contribution instead.

Of the donation, about $18-$20 per person will be spent to cover cost of the event. You are welcome to make more contribution during the event. All are welcome.

Please contact Alliance for Human Rights and Democracy in Nepal, America Nepal Friendship Society, Nepal Forum, Sanatan Dharma Sewa Samiti, Society of Nepali Students in New York, TND Foundation, United Sherpa Society. You can also contact Girija/Kapial Gautaum 201-670-7810, Naresh/Rabi 718-896-0113, Arjun 718-76-1156

****************************************************************** Date: March 22, 1998 To: The Nepal Digest <> Subject: Nepali News Source: The Kathmandu Post

Nepalese doctors in Britain : Crisis of identity By Rabindra Mishra

I've become useless to my country - a complete waste. Not only me, I even made my children an utter waste to the nation," a Nepalese doctor, who has been residing and working in Britain for around two decades, once told this scribe. Another in a different occasion said: "Ive been living in Britain for nearly 20 years, but I could be neither British nor remain a Nepali." And the third said: "After retirement, I want to go to Nepal and provide medical service to the poor free of charge - just for the sake of name." This scribe might have met only around two dozen Nepalese doctors out of around 60 who permanently reside in Britain, however, the remarks made by a few of them, mentioned above, seem to reflect the general feeling, predicament and, above all, the longing for identity among many of them.

Throughout the human history, if mankind has fought, striven and desired for anything that is for "Identity." Firstly, the struggle is for the identity of a community or a nation and then the aim is to achieve an individual identity. It appears that the Nepalese doctors and for that matter the permanently residing Nepalese community in Britain are slowly losing both the identities, while other ethnic communities have established and gradually enhanced theirs. This brief article concentrates mainly on doctors because the writer of these lines believes that this particular professionals could have made more direct contribution to the community than professionals from any other group and they could have also probably achieved more in Nepal than what they have in Britain.

Most of the permanently residing Nepalese doctors in Britain came in 1960s and 70s. Many came on government scholarships and shamelessly never returned to the service of the Nepalese government again. In a country like Nepal, medicine is a profession in which both fame and fortune are guaranteed even now. Only a few doctors can argue that they continued staying in Britain because they had job satisfaction. Most of the Nepalese doctors in Britain are General Practitioners (GPs) who have little more to do than refer the patients to specialists and hospitals. It would be hard to believe them if they talked about job satisfaction which is acquired only through challenging and demanding work. Back in Nepal, there was virtually no competition in this profession in the 60s and 70s and almost all of those who started their career then are leading a comfortable life and have earned both wealth and respect. Probably that is the most painful fact to accept for many of the Nepalese doctors in Britain, whose fame and, in a way, the fortune, both are absent in Nepal, where their identity matters. In Britain they are like a drop in the ocean. The doctor who said that he had become "a complete waste" to the country had also made the following remark:

"In Nepal, people talk about Dr Dixit, Dr Pandey, Dr Baral and everyone knows them, they command respect and exert influence in the society. What about us? Who knows us? What have we done to the nation? And if we talk about the life in Britain, probably many doctors in Nepal are leading a better life than we do here." It is not late yet and may be it is time to reflect and ponder for the Nepalese doctors in Britain whether they could do something for the nation. When they are criticised for not being of any use to the country, some of them do mention about a few small contributions made by the Nepalese Doctors Association (NDA) to health projects in Nepal. However, their contribution appears to be just a face-saving measure which could be considered insignificant compared to what they could have done had they been true to the nation. There is another bitter side to the whole episode. The majority of the second generation of Nepalese, who grew up with their parents in Britain, virtually dont know anything about Nepaliness and cannot speak their mother tongue. They go to Nepal just for a holiday and at least one of them, who I knew recently, found it
"disgusting." His reaction may not reflect the general view but all the young Nepalese I have met say they cant live in Nepal. Neither the parents nor the children seem to have ever given any attention to the fact that after the first generation how the second generation of Nepalese will identify themselves? Where will they fall back for support if "Paki-bashing" or a wave of hatred against the Asians intensifies? Other ethnic communities like Indians, Bangladeshis, Pakistanis, Sinhalas and Tamils from the South Asia region have not only preserved their cultural identity but also made a mark of their own in the British society. They are equally in touch with their country, culture and the community. Majority of the second generation Indians in the UK are fluent in at least three languages: their mother tongue (eg Gujrati, Panjabi, Bangali, Tamil etc), Hindi and English. They celebrate their festivals with full enthusiasm and fervour. Whereas most of the young Nepalese boys and girls dont even know how to greet their elders in a traditional manner and give and receive tika. They are more keen to celebrate Christmas and obviously the English New Year.

After 10 or 15 years it is impossible to imagine that these Nepalese youths will celebrate Nepalese festivals when they even dont know the language, let alone the tradition and practices. Have the parents ever thought what the response of their children will be after their generation when somebody asks, "what is your biggest festival and how do you celebrate it?" The answer probably would be, "I think it is called Dashain but I dont celebrate any more because I dont know how to celebrate."
"What do you celebrate then?"
"Christmas," probably will be the answer. If such a paradoxical situation arises, which seems very likely, that will be a most insulting and embarrassing moment for any person with self-respect and dignity and who feels proud about his roots and identity. It is unfortunate that the Association of the Nepalese in the UK, Yeti, is too divided, misguided and mismanaged to deal with and discuss such issues. The leaders of the association are more keen to celebrate Kings birthday, fax reports about the celebration to the palace and welcome leaders and ministers from Nepal than to work for the interest of the Nepalese community in Britain. Being British should not mean losing the cultural identity, for the sake of which millions of people around the world must be on war right at this moment while you finish reading this last line.

****************************************************************** From: "gulmi2" <> To: <> Subject: Date: Mon, 9 Mar 1998 19:26:51 -0600

My name is Robert Gulmi from the United States. Recently we came upon = our family name Gulmi, as being a city or province in Nepal. As my = relatives came from Albania and Italy, I find this very confusing and am = wondering about the origin of the name for Gulmi, Nepal. If you could = EMail me at I would be most grateful. Sincerely Robert = Gulmi

************************************************************** Date: Mon, 9 Mar 1998 20:19:07 -0500 (EST) From: Ashutosh Tiwari <> Subject: Re: XP family in Nepal (fwd)

Dear Dr Richert,

Thank you for your message on February, 21. Of course, I am interested on the XP family in Nepal. If it is possible to contact the physician taking care of this family and to obtain skin samples, we might establish fibroblasts and keratinocytes cultures for genetical analysis of this family and, eventually, for possible gene therapy trials, when the procedure will be established. We are actually working on an ex vivo gene terapy protocol for skin cancers in XP and are seeking patients suffering from the classical form of the disease. I am looking forewards hearing from you soon Mauro Mezzina

>Dr. Mezzina,
>I am a dermatology resident at the Univ. of Pittsburgh in the U.S. and
>recently received an email from a physician at the American Nepal
>Medical Foundation regarding an XP family in Nepal. I thought that this
>may be of interest to you, and therefore am forwarding it to you. Thank
>you for your interest.
>S. Richert, MD
>Arjun Karki, MD
>>America Nepal Medical Foundation

*************************************************************** Date: Tue, 10 Mar 1998 11:59:55 +0500 From: deschene@JHUVMS.HCF.JHU.EDU (Mary Des Chene) Subject: The journal SINHAS: New Issue To:

A new issue of Studies in Nepali History and Society has just been published. The table of contents is posted below. Abstracts of articles and the full text of the editorial are available on the SINHAS Web Pages, along with subscription information and formatting guidelines for those interested in submitting articles. The URL is:

The schedule for Martin Chautari discussions has also been updated through March 98, and is available on the Mangalbare Forum page of the SINHAS Web Pages.

Apologies to our subscribers for the delay in production of this issue of SINHAS.

The Editors


        ISSN: 1025-5109

Volume 2 No. 2 December 1997 (Pus 2054 v.s.)

*Articles *

Political Economy, Culture and Violence: Children's Journeys to the Urban Streets
        Lazima Onta-Bhatta

Rakshadal Bidroha tatha Nepal Communist Partymaathiko Pratibandha: Aitihasik Tathya tatha tyasko Durgami Prabhavmaathi Samkshipta Adhyayan
        Surendra K.C.

Demographic and Environmental Effects of the Mining Industry in the Hill Region of Western Nepal
        Om Gurung

* Commentary *

Special Thematic Section in this Issue: Nepali Women's Movement: Experiences, Critiques, Commentaries

Editorial Introduction The Simplicity and Complexity of Women's Movements (Mary Des Chene)

I. Thoughts on Mukti, Mahila and Movements

        Mahila Andolan Bhaneko Ke Ho? (Kamala Parajuli)
        Nepalko Mahila Andolanko Dishaa Sambandhi Kehi Kura (Sashi Shrestha)
        Patriarchal Pedagogy: A Challenge to Mahila Mukti Andolan (Bimal Phnuyal)
       Nari Mukti Andolan ra Trutipurna Samuhik Avchetana Man (Gyanu Pandey)
        Mahila Hastaksharko Itihasmaa - Motilakshmi (Sulochana Manandhar)
        Nine Million Rebellions (Manjushree Thapa)

II. Women in the Bikase World

        Questioning "Netribad" (Seira Tamang)
        The Political within the Nepali Women's Movement (Stephanie Tawa Lama)
        Political Divisions among Women's Groups (Kavita Sherchan)
        Going with the Flow of "Careermati" (Rupa Joshi)
III. Realities, Laws, Plans

        Manu's Lies against Hindu Women's Lives (Pramod Mishra)
        Utpidan bhitra Dalit Mahila (Durga Sob)
        Mahila Swasthya: Kaaran ra Niraakaran (Shobha Gautam)
        The Seeds of Activism (Aruna Uprety)
        Mahila Amsh Hak: Swadhin Haisiyatko Paksha (Yubaraj Sangraula)
        Women's Property Rights Movement (Anita Tuladhar, Bikas Joshi)
        Chhorilai Sampatti Adhikar (sathai)
        Mangaliko Adhuro 'Ka' (Khagendra Sangraula)
        Jangali Yugko Samapti Kahile? (Amrita Banskota)

IV. Further Reading
        Writings on Nepali Women: A Reference Bibliography
        Lekhanmaa Nepali Mahila: Sandarbha Samagri Suchi

***************************************************************************** Date: Thu, 12 Mar 1998 17:11:01 -0500 (EST) From: aiko <gs07aaj@panther.Gsu.EDU> To: Subject: International Women's Day, 8 March 1998 (fwd)

Dear all:

Today is International Women's Day. All over the world, in North America, in south America, on the Asian and African continents, in Australia, women and men are celebrating and remembering the accomplishments of women in the sciences, the maths, the arts, and the humanities. This is also a day to remember those being abused, even murdered, by husbands, fathers, brothers, and other family members because of some twisted societal code that says females are expendable commodities to be bought and sold.

As we go to our jobs and our schools, feeling smug in our privilege, cozy in our homes, bellies full of food, let us not forget the women and girls who are prevented from getting an education, who are being fed less than their brothers, made to shoulder responsibilities when they should be out playing with other children, some even having their little bodies ravaged by adults who only see their innocence and virginity as something to exploit and use, then thrown out like a limp tissue once disease has set in.

Let's remember the women and men who have dedicated their lives to helping the millions of girls and women through educational and vocational programs; or who venture into areas only the most depraved would go into, to bring some semblance of relief to those dying and starving. These selfless people have sacrificed much to help those less privileged. Not only do they have to fight against ignorance and poverty, but they must also fight the very people who should be helping to provide financial and other assistance, but won't because it's not *politically viable* or
*politically correct*, or it's just too much trouble and effort to "do anything".

There are activities planned and being put into motion in honor of this day. I personally feel sad that I cannot be at any one of the functions being launched here in the US. School and work obligations have prevented me from doing so. However, I can contribute in some small way via this msg. that I am sending, and I will continue to strive for the day when a little girl can wake up in the morning and know she is on her way to school, and not have the fear that she will be sold off to some man or brothel keeper by her family, and she will have enough food to fill her up until the next meal time, and that the work she contributes to her family is regarded as meaningful and helpful, and she can have the choice to marry or not without the pressures to conform to a world where right now, in too many places, she is looked on as a work horse and baby making machine or a man's disposable plaything.

What began as part of the labour movement in 1911 has become a global movement to work towards ensuring that the female half of the world population is treated with dignity and respect.

Regards, Aiko Anne Joshi

*********************************************************** Date: Mon, 09 Mar 1998 21:32:34 +0500 From: Haji Ahmedullah <> To: Subject: intro

11.3.98 From:Muslim Trading Company, Karachi - Pakistan Fax:92-21-2419832

Dear Sirs, We are looking for nepalian importers of foodstuffs, Spices, Seeds, Dried fruits and various other agri produces.

Please help me by providing list of importers of: White Poppy Seeds, Cumin Seeds, Licorice Rots, Rice, etc. will be much obliged, B/regards, Ahmedullah.

********************************************************** Date: Fri, 13 Mar 1998 03:47:29 PST From: Pawan Agrawal <> To: Subject: School in Nepal

Hello All,

I am a proud Nepali living in US. I am myself an Electronics engineer.

I am looking for engineering volunteers who can architect a beautiful, modern small (~4 rooms) school building to be made in a rural area of Nepal.

Any other suggestions, tips regarding building the school in Nepal would be greatly appreciated. How should one go about building school in Nepal? What are legal/political restrictions?

Thank you very much.


Pawan Agrawal

**************************************************** Date: Wed, 11 Mar 1998 17:22:45 -0800 From: James Read <> To: Subject: Nepalese Flag

Hi -

My son is doing a report on Nepal. Any idea on what the two emblems are on the national flag, or where I could find out?

Thanks. James Read

********************************************************** To: From: (Pratyoush Onta) Subject: article

Source: The Kathmandu Post, 13 March 1998 The Politics of Knowledge Our Oppressive Present by Pratyoush Onta

        If anyone were to ask me to describe the state of the Nepali nation in one word, I would simply say: oppressive. Oppressive because the breed of politicians who run this country at the moment and their kind of all-devouring politics cannot infuse any hope in the hearts of even the most optimistic Nepalis. Oppressive because the sense of hopelessness that is so pervasive in the Nepali population at large arises from a deep feeling of betrayal of possibilities that could have been achieved but were squandered in the interest of the few who have claimed to lead us. In a more personal tone, oppressive because new words of analysis seem useless in enhancing our ability to surpass our sorry state of affairs. Here I seek refuge in old insights and words, first put together some three years ago, to re-mark this moment of betrayal.
        Capsule history of betrayal: The betrayal experienced by a majority of Nepalis during the past few years is actually a continuation of the betrayal that has unfortunately been experienced by generations of Nepalis over the last two plus centuries. To be sure, today's Nepal is not identical to the feudal estate that it was. But if cultivation of the ability of the majority of Nepalis to use the state as an institutional resource is used as a criterion to judge the performance of the political elites of this country, then today's parties and their leaders are no better as rulers of Nepal than their predecessors of the past two hundred years.
        During much of the nineteenth century, the policies of the rent-seeking Nepali state were primarily responsible, as has been painstakingly shown by economic historian Mahesh C. Regmi, for the progressive immiserization of the majority of the peasantry in Nepal. The peasantry was seen as a class from where the rent-seeking state could extract surplus which was almost never reinvested towards increasing the productivity of agriculture. Thus, agrarian indebtedness induced by the state's rent-seeking practices, became the most important "push" factor behind the substantial movement of Nepalis to India as wage labourers during and since the second half of the nineteenth century. Therefore the growth of what has been called the central agrarian bureaucracy under the Ranas must be seen simply as the growth of the surplus-extraction machinery which in no way contributed towards the increment of the people's ability to use the state as a resource.
        The Panchayat years: The story during the Panchayat years is similar. Regions far and near from Kathmandu were administratively conquered by an ever burgeoning state apparatus which apart from strengthening the center's ability to sell its vacuous dreams of an exploitation-free society, absorbed in its growth the semi-educated and potentially vocal products of a growing national education system. Helpful in the manufacturing of a small middle-class increasingly divorced from its agrarian roots and devoted to the strengthening of its own interests, Panchayat's record towards the increment of the oppressed populations's ability to use the state as institutional resource was abysmal. While the circle of people who lay claim to the state's extractions of resources including foreign aid increased with the size of its bureaucracy, a majority of Nepal's population were denied meaningful membership in the so-called Nepali nation.
        The 1990s: The political leaders of the multiparty democratic system inherited this legacy of the Rana and Panchayat eras. Nobody in their right mind would have thought that theirs was an esay task. But in 1990-91 people had rightfully expected these leaders of what was then a new democratic Nepal to show a serious commitment towards the understanding of the problems that beset our society. Through hard work it was expected that they would be able to fulfull even a small bit of the expectations that people had of them. It was also hoped that for once now, all Nepalis could begin to enjoy the fruits of membership in the Nepali nation. But that was not to be. Because of endless bickerings between themselves, and multiple factioning within themselves, our political parties have devoted hardly any intellectual energy towards a clarification of the magnitude of the problems that confront us. Choosing to engage in empty rhetoric about who is more nationalist or committed to the 'cause of democracy', and the like, they have failed to provide any plausible vision of the future. They have given us no program of action that lays out the hard choices we need to make as a society today so that we may have a viable future as a nation.
        Endless speeches on the sovereignty of the people, unfortunately, do not meet their daily requirements. As living conditions stagnate or deteriorate on almost all fronts, it is becoming increasingly clear that our political parties and their leaders are incapable of solving the country's problems. They are not interested in increasing the ability of the majority of Nepalis to use the values of nationhood as an institutional resource. Staged histrionics inside the premises of Singha Durbar or in the respective party-meetings have only confirmed what many have pointed out before: our leaders hare interested only in the search for their shares of the spoils.
        Hence broadly speaking, there might be two choices for us: first is to vote with our feet and try to seek a better life elsewhere. Thousands of Nepalis from all classes are doing this as a matter of fact. Second (for those of us who have, temporarily or permanently, ruled out the first option for ourselves) is to figure out ways to tame our politics and politicians so that they can be contained within a much-reduced social turf that is not all encompassing or devouring as now. How shall we proceed to do that? Those reading this column, I hope, have some answers....


*********************************************************************************************** Date: Tue, 24 Feb 1998 14:44:37 -0500 (EST) From: Kanak Limbu <gs05kll@panther.Gsu.EDU> To: ba899a-hamilton@listproc.Gsu.EDU Subject: Technological Leapfrog and the Race for Learning (fwd)

Technological Leapfrog and the Race for Learning!

A posthumous contemplation but something which I found particularly fascinating in the domain of international policy or strategy. The reason I bring up these points - is that in all developing countries there seems to exist a win-win situation -or so we think! Developed countries like the Triad are going about lending money to developing countries so that they can catch up(in terms of infrastructure, standard of living, GNP GDP,etc.)On the surface it looks cut and dried - healthy/wealthy economies helping unhealthy/dire economies improve or come abreast through low-interest loans and highly trained and qualified personnel in order to put that borrowed resource to efficient and effective utilization. However, there are hidden agendas on both players parts.

Developed countries(hidden agenda): 1) Future market potential. In order for developed countries to successfully conduct operations in new markets(developing countries) they require an infrastructure that is similar to theirs in order to realize maximum potential market gains. i.e After the second war by rebuilding Germany and most of Europe the US strategically positioned itself for immediate and future markets for its gargantuous-sized corporations. In Japan they helped create massive industries that would be able to supply the enormous demands of the American market. Eventually the common denominator that is economic infrastructure led to similar-type markets, corporations to serve these markets, similar strategies driving these corporations,growing GNP,GDP etc which led to the term - The Triad. =20

Developing Countries(hidden agenda): 1) As discussed in class the agenda for developing countries is acquiring cheap capital and advanced know-how from the Triad - the race for learning! As discussed in class many developing countries want to leapfrog just like Japan and Europe did after the second world war and have the technological infrastructure/knowhow overnight. However, it does not seem to be working very well if hardly at all with most of the so called developing countries. There are many reasons for this but I would like to attribute mainly two reasons for this:

CULTURE As we discussed in class culture is very important in formulating long-term strategy principles. It must be noted that the Japanese and German cultures were most similar to the US culture from day one. By that I mean all three cultures had already proven enormous technological potential in their ability to mass produce planes, ships, tanks, rockets, prior to and during the war. They also had proven themselves in conducting well planned and effective military strategy with a high success ratio. So it comes as no surprise that with the inherent tacit knowledge acquired before and during the war of strategy formulation and mass production of high tech equipment that Germany and Japan could quickly evolve and become like the US in no time. If one is going to conquer the world its a given that one is going to make ones'self completely capable to do it(what incentive!). However, for developing countries without the benefit of what Japan and Germany experienced it is almost impossible. Today most of the developing country cultures harbour on extreme inefficiency, bureacracy, weak economic infrastructure - they do not have the(war incentive?) head start that Japan and Germany did. Therefore developing countries face an insurmountable task ahead of them in trying replicate what Japan and Germany did.

>From dinosaurs to man-on-the-moon. It happened in a period of millions of
years. Each generation bringing forth tacit knowledge from one generation to the next in order to bring technological improvements from one generation to the next in the order of evolution. No technological leapfrog here! In the same way both developing and developed countries must give crucial consideration in their hidden agendas of the consequences of their actions in trying to fast forward parts of the world to the present day without giving due consideration of the evolutionary stages in which different parts of the world do exist. For a long-term strategy technological leapfrog and the race for learning is very short-term. It is inevitable that eventually things will not work out for the Givers and the Takers. In short a no-win situation.=20

Kanak Limbu

************************************************************** Date: Thu, 19 Mar 1998 16:09:27 -0700 To: From: (tsering gurung) Subject: Survey on Fm Station for Nepal Digest readers

Hello Friends,

I am researching for an article I will be writing on the Hits FM 100 station for my Journalism class (next thursday..march 26th). If you have any opinion to share with me, could you e-mail me at (Esp. on its impact on the local Nepali culture; how the different generations view it and so forth.) Thank you.

Regards. Tsering Gurung

***************************************************** Date: Wed, 4 Feb 1998 14:30:26 -0500 (EST) From: "Pramod K. Mishra" <> To: The Nepal digest Editor <> Subject: The Problems of Chritianity

Dear Joel and Dr. Lewis,

It was entirely my decision to post Jason Ritchie's paper "The Problems of Christianity" in TND. I was hesitant, however, in doing so, not because "Nepal" was nowhere mentioned in it, but because I feared that many Hindus would probably think, "You see! After all, we are not so bad! We are not the only ones who discriminate and treat those who are not caste Hindus (i.e. the touchable castes) as subhumans and savages! All of us are after all humans, and as humans we commit crimes in the name of religion, tyrannize sactioned by religion, and do some feel-good works as well. We are truly multiculturalists!"

(Since Jason can't come to respond, let me take up your points and gear the conversation toward Nepal.)

But just the opposite has happened. Joel has said that all religions have done bad things, so what if Christianity did? Isn't that what you imply when you say, "All religions have been guilty of condoning crimes such as slavery or racism for long periods in their histories . . . ."

If you carefully read the paper, Jason does credit Christianity to have done some good work in the past and he does imply that since countless people practice it, criticism should be at the level of ideas not shouting in the streets, or pestering at someone's door, nor violence, or any otherkind of action. He even criticises, albeit tacitly, the Communists, who unsuccessfully used state action to proscribe Christianity.

I would on the contrary suggest to both Joel and Dr. Lewis that if you read at least the books that Jason mentions and educated yourselves, and still retained your faith in Chritianity, you'd come out stronger and more convincing. For unlike the tools of rhetoric that Jason has used in his paper--arguments and evidence, including ethos, pathos, and logos, to mention only a few--you have taken recourse to your faith and bland, hapless multiculturalism. Dont' they teach rhetoric and composition at Yale, or you haven't taken it? Otherwise, you wouldn't have used this sentence, "At time his simplifications of the issues turn into flat-out lies, such as this one." And then you quote Jason "Simply stated, Christians will always hate Jews as long as they are taught that their savior, Jesus Christ, was killed by Jews."

One wonders what's "flat-out lies" about it? Do some reading in recent literature. I'd suggest two books to start out with. One written by a Cornell professor, who is actually Israeli Prime-minister Ben Natanyahu's father, on Inquisition; and the other Goldhagen's "Hitler's Willing Executioners." Adn then of course, you have the whole host of recent scholarship about colonialism.
> polemics -- papers intended to convert others to their point of view --
> rather than objective, helpful analyses of the religion in question.

This is the primary goal of persuasive writing anyway, isn't it?

> Let me offer one or two examples of how Jason is either factually wrong or
> unfair. (In fact, I think the whole paper is incorrect -- even when the
> crimes he alludes to are real, the conclusions he derives from them are
> unjustified. But refuting him point for point would take up too much
> space, and divert this message still further from the topic of Nepal).
> First, Jason continually tries to attribute exclusively to Christianity
> characteristics which are shared by religions and/or cultures across the
> world. Many (if not most) religions have a conversion impulse --
> including Islam, many forms of Buddhism and Hinduism (the Hare Krishna
> sect leaps instantly to mind), "artificial" religions like Scientology,
> and not least of all, the aggressive agnosticism of people like Jason
> Ritchie. _All_ religions have been guilty of condoning crimes such as
> slavery or racism for long periods in their histories. And all religions
> have been attended at times by superstitions (such as witch hunts) or
> cultural baggage (such as myths of racial superiority) which proved
> harmful and unjust.

This is called Multiculturalism gone wild.

> Second, Jason has adopted the classic strategy of confusing Christianity
> with European imperialism. This is a particularly easy strategy to take,
> since for the last few centuries, the most powerful people in the world
> have generally been European Christians or Europeans of Christian descent.
> The evils committed by these people (and justified by many European
> religious authorities) are an undeniable moral outrage. However, in
> claiming that _Christianity_ is responsible for all the enslavement and
> genocide perpetrated during this period, Jason overlooks two key points.
> First, there were plenty of European Christians who opposed the crimes of
> colonialism -- I recommend the movie "The Mission" (starring Robert de
> Niro) as a dramatized illustration of one such example. Second, there
> were and always have been plenty of Christians who are simply not
> European. Claiming that all of these Christians are as guilty as (say)
> Christopher Columbus is not only unjust, but ridiculous. _Their_ form of
> Christianity did not encourage colonialism or proclaim the superiority of
> the white race.

Joel, how wrong and uninformed you are here! You give an example of a movie to make your point! How about Jason's scholarly sources? I strongly believe that you read the accounts of Western colonial expansion. You'll find that there's a famous saying that European imperialism spread with the Bible in one hand and a gun in another.

> Finally, Jason's accusations of prejudice against Jews, homosexuals, and
> women are hopelessly confused. He attributes to _all_ Christians the
> flaws of some; he has no sense of how the understanding of (say) the role
> of women has changed over time; and, again, he claims that Christianity is
> solely responsible for social evils which have been present under other

Again, read into feminist and gay and lesbian literature.

> Nepal and Nepali interests are not served by this kind of religious
> polemic. Like almost all new democracies, Nepal is becoming open for the
> first time to philosophies and religions which were previously suppressed
> by the government. Accordingly, religious unrest is slowly beginning to
> rear its head -- between Hindus and Muslims, Hindus and Christians, even
> between Hindus and Buddhists. This is a potentially huge disaster (as any
> student of Indian politics is well aware). To keep Nepal's long tradition
> of peaceful religious coexistence intact, a friendly dialogue between
> religions must be maintained under the new, democratic conditions. If the
> Nepali people begin to think in terms of religious polemic -- if they
> begin to think of other religions (and their followers) as destructive,
> immoral, and evil -- the tension between different religious groups will
> inevitably turn into violence, repression, or both.

Peaceful co-existence of religions in Nepal! As long as high caste Hinduism has an upper hand in running the state. As soon as that is threatened, you'll see Indian style Hindu fundamentalism rising in Nepal. It has already taken form in Nepal since 1990. Friendly dialogue among religions can't take place as long as there are people whose sole purpose in life is either to call others "untouchables" and "mlekshas" or to convert others because they are heathens and savages and their souls will burn in hell or to treat others as "kafirs" and idolators and demolish their temples and places of worship. This is precisely why people like Jason are needed in this age of facile multiculturalism when
"ego-massage" and self-congratulation have become the order of the day.
> I'm not suggesting that Nepali leaders should only examine religious
> issues through rose-colored spectacles. The gro

******************************************************* From: "gulmi2" <> To: <> Subject: Date: Mon, 9 Mar 1998 19:26:51 -0600

My name is Robert Gulmi from the United States. Recently we came upon = our family name Gulmi, as being a city or province in Nepal. As my = relatives came from Albania and Italy, I find this very confusing and am = wondering about the origin of the name for Gulmi, Nepal. If you could = EMail me at I would be most grateful. Sincerely Robert = Gulmi

********************************************************* Date: Mon, 9 Mar 1998 15:37:32 +0100 From: Mauro Mezzina <> To: "Shauna M. Richert, MD" <> Subject: Re: XP family in Nepal

Dear Dr Richert,

Thank you for your message on February, 21. Of course, I am interested on the XP family in Nepal. If it is possible to contact the physician taking care of this family and to obtain skin samples, we might establish fibroblasts and keratinocytes cultures for genetical analysis of this family and, eventually, for possible gene therapy trials, when the procedure will be established. We are actually working on an ex vivo gene terapy protocol for skin cancers in XP and are seeking patients suffering from the classical form of the disease. I am looking forewards hearing from you soon Mauro Mezzina

>Dr. Mezzina,
>I am a dermatology resident at the Univ. of Pittsburgh in the U.S. and
>recently received an email from a physician at the American Nepal
>Medical Foundation regarding an XP family in Nepal. I thought that this
>may be of interest to you, and therefore am forwarding it to you. Thank
>you for your interest.
>S. Richert, MD
>Arjun Karki, MD
>>America Nepal Medical Foundation
>>Date: Sat, 14 Feb 1998 00:12:25 -0500 (EST)
>>From: Ashutosh Tiwari <>
>>To: gbnc-members@MIT.EDU
>>Subject: help
>>---------- Forwarded message ----------
>>I am Rajan Panthi. A twenty four year old, resident of Anam Nagar,
>>Kathmandu, seriously suffering from a dangerous Cancer called
>>XERODERMA PRIGMENTOSA and nearing the end.
>>With the little money that my father earns from his small shop, a
>>type of hand to mouth process has somehow been possible.
>>My younger sister 21 and my younger brother 19, both are also suffering
>>from the same disease and they are also in a very serious condition
>>and have disfigured bodies. One of my eyes has been removed and my
>>other eye is so badly swollen that I have now become blind.
>>I have been taken to different hospitals, both inside and outside the
>>country for medical treatment and have been examined many times by
>>lots of doctors. Despite several attempts of treatment, there is no
>>sign of improvement or recovery. A large amount of money has been
>>spent to undergo many operations. My whole body is badly infected and
>>is completely covered in puss. Black scars can be seen to cover my
>>entire body. While sitting in the sun, my whole body aches with
>>severe pain, sometimes unbearably sharp, I have to remain isolated in
>>a room. Despite unbearable pain of the major operations which have
>>been carried out on me. I am still alive.
>>My pain is beyond tolerance, and I am sure I have become an
>>unbearable burden on my parents and younger sister. Now I feel that
>>they are mentally disturbed due to my deteriorating health.
>>I am under impression that the recent invention and discoveries in
>>the field of science and Medicine have achieved an unprecedented
>>progress to uplift and recover every possible human diseases around
>>the world.
>>I, from the buttom of my heart, want to stop both mentally and
>>financially burdening my family. My last desire will only come true
>>when an institution is ready to take the responsibility of
>>investigating my disease. I solemnly pray to god that no other single
>>human being suffers from such a deadly disease.
>>I will personally be extremely happy and grateful to an individuals
>>or an organization that could provide me with its valuable time and
>>assistance for research and investigation of my disease. Whether I
>>will benifit from this or not, it does not matter, but hopefully it
>>will, in due time , open a new horizon of hope for many of my brother
>>and sister who are also suffering from this kind of disease.
>>My feeling is that if other people benefit from or are even cured
>>from the results that come from the investigation of my body, I would
>>even be prepared to give up my life.
>>Thanks a lot for your compassionate consideration.
>>Rajan Panthi
>>Anam Nagar , Kathmandu , Phone 00-977-1-227311.

******************************************************************** Date: Wed, 11 Mar 1998 23:22:54 EST From: Shailesh N Gongal <gongal@MIT.EDU> To: Subject: URGENT Rajan Panthi

To Narayan Panthi c/o Bishnu Dangi

Dear Mr. Narayan Panthi,

I received your message this morning. Just in time, it seems.

Please find Dr. Mauro Mezzina's (in France) attached below. I hope you will get in touch with him as soon as possible. I sincerely hope that Mr. Rajan Panthi, his two brothers and a sister will benefit from Dr. Mezzina's research. I hope the whole family benefits.

My friend Ashutosh Tiwari, Dr. Arjun Karki, Dr. Shauna Richert have been instrumental in getting your appeal across and finally to Dr. Mezzina. Other friends of ours, icluding Dr. Tom McCaughey (now in Nepal) have also helped us with pushing our queries.

And of course, the internet deserves the most credit, along with all human beings who use it to a good purpose.

Wish you all the best. My prayers are with you.

Please do update us as things progress.

I will send you the fax number as soon as I verify it.


Shailesh Gongal 2 St. Mary Road Cambridge, MA 02139

> Date: Mon, 9 Mar 1998 15:37:32 +0100
> To: "Shauna M. Richert, MD" <>
> From: (Mauro Mezzina)
> Subject: Re: XP family in Nepal
> Cc:
> Dear Dr Richert,
> Thank you for your message on February, 21. Of course, I am interested on
> the XP family in Nepal.
> If it is possible to contact the physician taking care of this family and
> to obtain skin samples, we might establish fibroblasts and keratinocytes
> cultures for genetical analysis of this family and, eventually, for
> possible gene therapy trials, when the procedure will be established. We
> are actually working on an ex vivo gene terapy protocol for skin cancers in
> XP and are seeking patients suffering from the classical form of the
> disease.
> I am looking forewards hearing from you soon
> Mauro Mezzina

***************************************************************** Date: Thu, 12 Mar 1998 15:41:53 To:, Himalayans@vlinsvr.vsla.EDU,, Subject: Summer Nepali Language Program

Nepali language will be taught at Cornell University at all levels this summer. Classroom instruction is complemented by use of audio materials, films, and guest lectures, as well as various other social program activities.

June 1-July 10. 6 weeks. 6 credits. Beginning. Intermediate. Advanced.

Tuition is $3470 + $30 Registration fee. A $200 deposit is required. Tuition scholarships are available.

For information and applications: The South Asia Program, Cornell
(607) 255-8493 or <>

Please let your students and colleagues know about this program. Application deadline is May 1.

Thank you, Kathryn S. March

************************************************************* Date: Mon, 23 Mar 1998 10:28:57 -1000 To:, From: Narain <> Subject: re: Nepal Digest Article


Tara Niraula Vijaya K. Sigdel Arjun Karki Girija Gautam Ramesh Dhungel Rajpal Singh Ashok Gurung

        hi there, my name is Narain Rana and i am writing to you to let you know that i agree with what you had to say with regards to the issue of Nepal losing its recently gained democratic movement.

        in all honestly, i am not all that familiar with all the political games that are played by the king and other political parties in Nepal, however, one can never take for granted the basic human right where we are all created equal... the king should not be allowed to do as he pleases, especially after Nepal is categorized as a constitutional monarchy.

        if you can help me understand, is there any legal positions that can be pointed out as to why the king cannot be exercising his limited power over the Prime minister and the parliament. by now, i have a feeling that the Nepalese constitution is written in a way that it favors the king and his party.

        i would appreciate if you could explain these ideas in the next TND or if you could send me a copy of the Nepal constitution if you have access to one.

        hope to hear from you soon,
        one more Nepali to support your cause,
        Narain Rana.

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