But Christians go on declaring it holy. There is a vested interest: unless it is holy, who is going to believe in it? And once you accept something as holy, then you are gullible. Then you will accept anything, then you will accept any absurdity, any inconsistency. You will not think about it – how can you think about something which God has written? It has to be accepted in its totality, entirety. This is the reason that each religion tries to enforce the idea that their book is the holy book. Of course they have to deny other holy books simultaneously, because there cannot be so many holy books, for the simple reason that all these holy books are so contradictory to each other that it would be impossible to make any sense out of it. They have to be denied.
Hindus cannot accept the Bible, the Torah, the Koran as holy. Neither can Christians or Jews or Mohammedans accept the Vedas as holy. What to say about Christians, Jews and Mohammedans – they are the three religions that happened outside India. But there are other religions, other than Hinduism, which happened in India – Jainism, Buddhism, Sikhism: they don’t believe that the Vedas are the holy book.
Buddha condemns the Vedas, criticizes the Vedas as drastically as possible, because the Vedas supported – you will be surprised, and this is the holy book – the Vedas supported all kinds of violence. In the Vedic ritual animals have to be sacrificed. You will be surprised that today the Hindus are continuously asking the government – creating trouble, movements, riots – that cow slaughter should be stopped. But the Vedas, their holy books, are full of instances that in their particular rituals, cows were slaughtered: gomedh yagna, cow slaughter ritual. And it is not only that the cows were slaughtered and thrown away; the brahmins who slaughtered them ate them.
If you have been to India, or if you have been in contact with Indians anywhere, you may have come across the surname Sharma, which is very common. It is a brahmin surname, Sharma. But the person whom you will be introduced to as Doctor Sharma, Professor Sharma, even he may not be aware what sharma means. In the Vedic rituals the slaughtering of the cows was called sharman, and the brahmin who was the expert in doing it was called Sharma. These are the descendants of those people.
Certainly Buddha was angry, and it was not that only animals were slaughtered, even man was slaughtered. Just as there were gomedh yagnas, there were narmedh yagnas, man slaughtering rituals. And certainly they must have eaten the flesh of man too, because the brahmin will not slaughter something unnecessarily. Now, no Hindu talks about the fact that their Vedas are full of cannibalism, violence, non-vegetarianism. And these books were written by God! Buddha and Mahavira both hammered on the Vedas. Of course there was no way to answer Buddha and Mahavira.
But the trouble was Buddha became prevalent, he convinced millions of people. The day he died, his sayings became holy. The game remains the same. The players change but the rules of the game remain the same, because now the question was, for the followers of Buddha: “Hindus have the Vedas – holy books; Jainas have their holy books. If we don’t have holy books we are a loser in the race, in the competition.”