April 13, 2008

Deformed Indian Baby Worshiped as Goddess

Joshua, a reader of this blog e-mailed me this bizarre story out of India about a baby born with two faces who is now being worshiped as the reincarnation of a Hindu goddess. Before we in America point and laugh at what seems like such an absurd example of superstition, we must remember that we are surrounded by people who claim to believe equally ridiculous things in the name of their religion (i.e., Christians).

As Joshua points out, there are some parallels between this story and the Christian nativity story.
Jesus was not born deformed, but his birth was accompanied by supernatural occurrences (The appearance of an unusually bright star. - More than likely, an exceptionally bright convergence of several planets.) which led people to believe he was a god. And in many Roman Catholic churches in Italy and Spain you'll find paintings and statues of Jesus "the child god" raising his hand to bless the observer. Yet you probably won't find a single Christian who wouldn't balk at the notion of this Indian baby being a goddess.
Joshua also notes that there is an extremely sad side of this story:
The sad part about this Indian child is that while her physical condition heightens her need for love, bonding and emotional security, her parents' and neighbours' superstition will only put her under undue psychological pressure and into emotional isolation.

This is another example of how extreme (or extremist) faith can actually endanger people's well-being and even their lives.
Assuming this child lives, it seems there is little hope of a normal life. I hope American Christians think twice about dismissing this whole thing as primitive superstition without first examining their own. Failing to do so would only compound an already tragic story.

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