Friday, November 5, 2010






Shree Vinekar, M.D.

There is a branch of psychoanalysis that is termed Applied Psychoanalysis.

Freud himself contributed to it by writing his extra-clinical literary
works that have become quite famous.

Many other famous psychoanalysts like Erik Erikson and his protégé
Sudhir Kakar have also taken liberty to exercise their talents in
this domain.

Common sense dictates that although this field is remotely connected
to the therapeutic aspects of psychoanalysis, only those who have the
authentic training and qualifications as psychoanalysts can truly delve
into this domain with some competence. For example, an "Applied Mathematician"
is necessarily an authentic "Mathematician" first.

In contrast to mathematics, psychoanalysis is viewed as only
a school of thought despite its practical value in the field of
psychology and psychiatry. Needless to say, over the years it has lost
its pride of place as a scientific discipline though efforts were made
to promote it as such.

Psychoanalysis has its legitimate uses but it is rarely used by
well trained reputable psychoanalysts themselves to analyze any
religion, highly revered spiritual leaders or religious mythology
in spite of earlier attempts by Freud himself. If they do so, their
training as psychoanalysts is quite transparent in the empathy for
the subject of their analysis and their respect for other human beings
in contrast to the wild analysis undertaken by the Western Indologists
most of whom are members of the faculty of Religious Studies departments
or their variations such as Departments of Sanskrit, or South Asian Studies,

Religion is viewed by psychoanalysis as a collective neurosis and this
concept is applicable to all religions. The practices of all religions
have a close connection with mainly the Obsessive Compulsive Neurosis.
One needs to have clinical training and experience to understand in depth
these collective neuroses and alleged neurosis in a living or deceased
individual spiritual leader.

The perversion of the Western Indologists in pretending to be applied
psychoanalysts can be viewed as resulting from 1) fundamentally a lack
of training as psychoanalysts, 2) a conscious or unconscious desire to
denigrate a religion foreign to them with no empathy for the practitioners
and their sentiments, and 3) their urge to use a “wild analysis” with projection of their own Unconscious upon the phenomena of Hindu religion (Devatas and Hindu scriptures, Hindu mythology, or Hindu Spiritual figures, etc.).

They lack the knowledge of Indian languages and nuances of certain words and
also lack thorough knowledge of Sanskrit at an advanced level, and culturally accepted meanings in the rich spiritual traditions of Hinduism, and therefore,
the entire field of "Hinduism" becomes as ambiguous to them as a Rorschach card
of the famous “Ink Blot Test.” What they project on Hinduism and Hindus
can be easily recognized as equine elimination springing from their
own past, their negative biases, and of course, their cultural background
and their own Unconscious. Such material is disguised as a product of
scholarship praised by their Western peers who lack the ability to
distinguish scholarly professional psychoanalytic interpretations
from subterfuge.

American Academy of Religion has no standing as a group of
psychoanalytic scholars. Most of the members of this academy
are themselves the sufferers of the collective or societal neuroses
as viewed and defined by Psychoanalysis. Therefore, they cannot be
objective in this matter of analysing their own or others'
religions or religion based mythology until they themsleves go
through a thorough and nearly complete analysis. In the event they
do so, if their analysis is successful, it is doubtful they will
will engage in such alloplastic activity of denigratingly analysing
others' religion or any longer remain active members of such academy
of a group of "neurotics" suffering from a collective neurosis as viewed by

Simply speaking, it should be evident to astute readers bynow that the
academics in the departments of Religious Studies or Schools of
Divinity and those others who truly study and practice Psychoanalysis
mix as poorly as oil and water. In other words, trained psychoanalysts
may be competent in analysing religion related matters, but
scholars of religious studies with background in humanities are
hardly qualified to competently apply psychoanalytic concepts in any
human endeavour. They cannot be considered unbiased neutral observers.

Many erudite scholars in the West as well as the East have questioned
whether psychoanalysis has the right to interfere into fields that have
nothing to do with its specific realm of interest. Having recognized the controversy, however, it is quite apparent that many Western Indologists
thrive in the publication business by producing books designed to
sensationalize the field of comparative religion by depicting Hindu religion
as mostly pervert. They have meticulously avoided extensive scholarly review
and examination of their “applied psychoanalytic” works by authentic, well
trained psychoanalysts (except for giving a few small Publisher’s blips by
Sudhir Kakar, used as a marketing tool).

These Western scholars like Wendy Doniger, Paul Courtright,and Jeffrey Kripal,
etc., claiming to be Freudians are quite timid when it comes to exercising
their talents in interpreting Christianity, Islam, and Judaism using
the same methods they use in depicting "Hinduism." They avoid applying
boldly these wild and shoddy methods of their amateur psychoanalytic
interpretations to Christianity, Islam, and Judaism in stark contrast to their foolhardiness in dealing with Hinduism and Hindus. Reasons for this are obvious
to all who are in touch with the current sociopolitical climate.

Besides, it does not require a scholar to detect the mocking and deriding
tone of these so called scholars who pose as objectively analysing other's
culture. Their use of highfloating academic scholarship cannot conceal the
mockery they make of other's cultures that is transparent to anyone. Most of
their Western readers giggle as they read their books and are quite amused and
take delight in the negative depiction of other's religions. Such mockery is
hardly limited to the fast and loose interpretations of the sexual or erotic symbolisms. The outrage of the Hindus in reaction to their works is erroneously dubbed with the same old hackneyed "explaining away" as their "resistance to accept the Unconsious sexuality" in the religious symbolism and mythology. Although such may be an apt observation occasionally, it is the bulldozing overpowering demeaning mockery of other's religious sentiments by berating their heroes, ego-ideals,spiritual and even their political leaders, and social customs, etc., that leads to the angy reactions to these authors' works. Psychonalysis is only a smokescreen used to divert the attention from the main agenda of these academics to engage others in polemics that are quite tangential to the main issue of mockery of everything others hold dear. That is hardly an admirable trait of a gentleman (lady) and a scholar in any culture.

There is no such demeaning treatment of any other religion besides Hiduism
by this cadre of American professors of religious studies, most of whom are
trained by Wendy Doniger. Ridiculing others under the banner of academic
freedom and freedom of speech has become their favorite sport.

No Hindu would object to their writings if they were truly academic,
dignified and authentic scholarly acitivities sans the ridicule.

This leads to a natural conclusion that, unqualified as they are, they all
are using applied psychoanalysis as a sham and not truly as a scholarly tool
to elucidate and develop any deeper understanding of Hindu religion. In fact, instead of "edification" their works are a form of abuse perpetrated by throwing aspersions at a foreign religion that they have failed to fully comprehend
in spite of their alleged claim to (fake) scholarship and authority on Hinduism
in the Western academia. Some of them have vast information about India and Hindu
sriptures and mythology but they utterly lack understanding of the Dharmic traditions and the symbolic meanings. Unfortunately, vast majority of Hindus themselves are also many a time quite ill-informed in this area.

Since their readership is mostly ignorant of psychoanalytic and applied psychoanalytic methods, as well as their subject of analysis (namely, Hinduism), they have been successful in perpetrating a perpetual grand scale fraud on their fans and their readership in the last twenty-five to thirty years. Their publishers are seduced, deceived, and corrupted by the demand for such pervert and often virtually pornographic material disguised as a product of "superior scholarship"
of renowned academicians. On closer examinations their works are often found to be lacking in academic integrity. (see other articles on this blog)

Besides that, these so called Indologists have a political agenda and are
generally clever to detect cleavages in the Hindu and Indian society to find a following and support. They also find some wellknown or not-so-wellknown individuals, with Hindu sounding names, as their admirers to market their books. Their publishers are knowingly or unknowlingly accessories to such fraud.

Academic freedom and freedom of speech are well known laxatives that facilitate
such equine elimination. It is seemingly becoming so very fragrant to the
publishers like Penguin Inc. and their Western readers now-a-days. There can
also be a large demand among Hindus as well as non-Hindus in one billion
population of India that can provide a market-share for such rubbish. Those
familiar with the political events in India can easily recognize why such Western Indologists will be welcomed by some Indians.

The reputable institutions of higher education like University of Chicago,
Harvard, Emory, and Rice in the U.S. are expected to scrutinize "research" undertaken by their faculty even in the Social Sciences through their respective IRB's to make sure that the human subject rights are protected especially when a single community is chosen for its subject. Any observations made need to be verified with consensual validation before any theory is built to interpet these observations through any research. Conclusions reached by analyzing some spurious observations that negatively affect the vulnerable community need to be scrutinized by the respective IRBs as invalid and ill-motivated products of faulty scholarchip. Most IRB's would not permit deception of the community or human subjects under the name of social science research. Non-disclosure of intent of research to the subjects or community as some of these researchers have engaged in during their stay in India mingling with trusting innocent people who had no idea as to how the stories shared by them would be totally distorted to suit the deviant mentality of the researchers would be totally unacceptable to the IRBs. The researchers will be held to the standards of utmost integrity in making accurate observations that can be universally consensually validated and not just by their equally ill-informed peers. Imaginary or distorted "facts" and inferences and conclusions based on such "facts" would not be permitted to pass as "scientific" psychoanalytic research especially when such is deletarious to the members of the community and the community at large that is being studied for "research." It is amazing that the IRB's of these reputable Universities have not taken notice of such harm brought
to a single community by their unethical Indologists who call
themselves "researchers."

The question now is: Does it behoove the American Academy of Religion to
have members engage in such unethical damaging activity of sham scholarship and "spurious research" when the national trend is to respect diversity and promote deeper understanding among people with different cultures and religions?

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