Inventing Aryan Race : Max Muller

Published: Tuesday, Apr 24,2012, 19:45 IST
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Hitesh Rangra is a young Engineering Graduate who works for an IT Firm. However, that's only his professional side. He has been more of a social activist, who likes doing service activities. His interests include reading, from Vivekanand to Indian history and cultural heritage.

Friedrich Max Müller known as Max Müller, was a German philologist and Orientalist hired by Britain for creating academic environment so that Aryan race theory planted in Indian minds. He was one of the founders of the western academic field of Indian studies and the discipline of comparative religion.Müller wrote both scholarly and popular works on the subject of Indology, a discipline he introduced to the British reading public, and the Sacred Books of the East, a massive, 50-volume set of English translations prepared under his direction, stands as an enduring monument to Victorian scholarship.

He expressed his views strongly for reform in Hinduism in order to superimpose view Christianity on former. He supported Brahmo Samaj movement. He believes that Brahmo Samja will engender an Indian form 'Christianity' and Indian were practice Christianity without being Roman Catholic , Anglicans or Lutherans."In the Lutheran tradition, he hoped that the superstition and "idolatry" which he considered to be characteristic of modern popular Hinduism would disappear.

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In a letter to his wife, he said: The translation of the Veda will hereafter tell to a great extent on the fate of India and on the growth of millions of souls in that country. It is the root of their religion, and to show them what the root is, I feel sure, is the only way of uprooting all that has sprung from it during the last 3000 years.

Friedrich Max Müller created a plan to conquer Indian education system.He wrote to Secretary of Education :- "India has been conquered once, but India must be conquered again, and that second conquest should be a conquest by education. Much has been done for education of late, but if the funds were tripled and quadrupled, that would hardly be enough… A new national literature may spring up, impregnated with western ideas, yet retaining its native spirit and character… By encouraging a study of their own ancient literature, as part of their education, a national feeling of pride and  self-respect will be reawakened among those who influence the large masses of the people. A new national literature will bring with it a new national life, and new moral vigour. As to religion, that will take care of itself. The missionaries have done far more than they themselves seem to be aware of, nay, much of the work which is theirs they would probably disclaim. The Christianity of our nineteenth century will hardly be the Christianity of India. But the ancient religion of India is doomed — and if Christianity does not step in, whose fault will it be?"

In an excerpt of C. Beckerlegge, Professor Friedrich Max Müller and the Missionary Cause, Culture and Empire, Manchester University Press ND, 1997, p.189.

1. Max Müller was a British agent, especially employed (in 1847) to write the translations of the Vedas in such a demeaning way so that the Hindus should lose faith in them. His personal letter to his wife dated December 9, 1867 reveals this fact.

2. He was highly paid for this job. According to the statistical information given on page 214 of the “English Education, 1798-1902” by John William Adamson, printed by Cambridge University Press in 1930, the revised scale of a male teacher was £90 per year and for a woman, £60 in 1853. The present salary of a teacher in London is £14,000 to £36,000 per year, which averages a minimum of at least 200 times increase in the last 146 years. Max Müller was paid £4 per sheet of his writing which comes to £800 of today (1999). This is an incredibly high price for only one sheet of writing. But it’s the general law of business, that the price of a commodity increases with its demand. The British were in such an imperative need to get someone to do this job and Max Müller was the right person, so they paid whatever Max Müller asked for. His enthusiastic letter to his mother dated April 15, 1847 reveals this fact.

3. Max Müller’s letters dated August 25, 1856 and December 16, 1868 reveal the fact that he was desperate to bring Christianity into India so that the religion of the Hindus should be doomed.

His letters also reveal that:

4. He lived in poverty before he was employed by the British, (5) his duplicity in translation was praised by his superiors, and (6) in London, where he lived, there were a lot of orientalists working for the British.

Letters of Max Müller.

“The Life and Letters of Friedrich Max Müller.” First published in 1902 (London and N.Y.). Reprint in 1976 (USA).

1. TO HIS WIFE, OXFORD, December 9, 1867.

“…I feel convinced, though I shall not live to see it, that this edition of mine and the translation of the Veda will hereafter tell to a great extent on the fate of India, and on the growth of millions of souls in that country. It is the root of their religion, and to show them what that root is, I feel sure, the only way of uprooting all that has sprung from it during the last 3,000 years.”

2. TO HIS MOTHER, 5 NEWMAN'S ROW, LINCOLN'S INN FIELDS, April 15, 1847.

“I can yet hardly believe that I have at last got what I have struggled for so long… I am to hand over to the Company, ready for press, fifty sheets each year; for this I have asked £200 a year, £4 a sheet. They have been considering the matter since December, and it was only yesterday that it was officially settled.”

“…In fact, I spent a delightful time, and when I reached London yesterday I found all settled, and I could say and feel, Thank God! Now I must at once send my thanks, and set to work to earn the first £100.”

3. To Chevalier Bunsen. 55 St. John Street, Oxford, August 25, 1856.

“India is much riper for Christianity than Rome or Greece were at the time of St. Paul. The rotten tree has for some time had artificial supports… For the good of this struggle I should like to lay down my life, or at least to lend my hand to bring about this struggle. Dhulip Singh is much at Court, and is evidently destined to play a political part in India.”

To the duke of Argyll. Oxford, December 16, 1868.

“India has been conquered once, but India must be conquered again, and that second conquest should be a conquest by education. Much has been done for education of late, but if the funds were tripled and quadrupled, that would hardly be enough… A new national literature may spring up, impregnated with western ideas, yet retaining its native spirit and character… A new national literature will bring with it a new national life, and new moral vigour. As to religion, that will take care of itself. The missionaries have done far more than they themselves seem to be aware of.”

“The ancient religion of India is doomed, and if Christianity does not step in, whose fault will it be?”

4. (a) From the diary of Max Müller. Paris. April 10, 1845.

“I get up early, have breakfast, i.e. bread and butter, no coffee. I stay at home and work till seven, go out and have dinner, come back in an hour and stay at home and work till I go to bed. I must live most economically and avoid every expense not actually necessary. The free lodging is an immense help, for unless one lives in a perfect hole… I have not been to any theatre, except one evening, when I had to pay 2 francs for a cup of chocolate, I thought ‘Never again’.”

(b) To his mother. Paris, December 23, 1845.

“…instead of taking money from you, my dearest mother, I could have given you some little pleasure. But it was impossible, unless I sacrificed my whole future… I have again had to get 200 francs from Lederhose, and with the money you have just sent shall manage till January or February.”

5. On April 17, 1855, Bunsen wrote to thank Max Müller for an article on his

Outlines.

“You have so thoroughly adopted the English disguise that it will not be easy for any one to suspect you of having written this ‘curious article.’ It especially delights me to see how ingeniously you contrive to say what you announce you do not wish to discuss, i.e. the purport of the theology. In short, we are all of opinion that your cousin was right when she said of you in Paris to Neukomm, that you ought to be in the diplomatic service!”

6. To his mother. September 1, 1847.

“My rooms in London are delightful. In the same house lives Dr. Trithen, an orientalist, whom I knew in Paris, and who was once employed in the Office for Foreign Affairs in St. Petersburg. Then there are a great many other orientalists in London, who are mostly living near me, and we form an oriental colony from all parts of the world… We have a good deal of fun at our cosmopolitan tea-evenings.”

Since British empire was most powerful at that time so it was very easy for Muller to plant his idea into Indian mind.Some scholar try to confront Muller view but that was easily suppressed. Muller translation proved to be stronger than what British master imagined with his idea to change Education system of India.

British empire funded huge some of money for education reform in India which was than supported by some Indian to brought English education system in India and destroy it's own system.


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