François Gautier

French journalist

François Gautier (born 26. July 1950) is a French political writer and journalist based in India, since 1971.

Quotes edit

1990s edit

  • This was indeed a masterly stroke on the part of the British : thanks to the Aryan theory, they showed on the one hand that Indian civilisation was not that ancient and that it was posterior to the cultures which influenced the western world – Mesopotamia, Sumeria, or Babylon – and on the other hand, that whatever good things India had developed – Sanskrit, literature, or even its architecture, had been influenced by the West.
    • India's Self Denial , 1999 and in Rewriting Indian History, 2002 and in A History of India as it Happened
  • American archaeologist Mark Kenoyer was able to prove in 1991 that the majority of archaeological sites of the so-called Harappan (or Dravidian) civilisation were not situated on the ancient bed of the Indus river, as first thought, but on the Saraswati. Another archaeologist , Paul-Henri Francfort, Chief of a franco-american mission (Weiss, Courty, Weterstromm, Guichard, Senior, Meadow, Curnow), which studied the Saraswati region at the beginning of the nineties, found out why the Saraswati had ‘disappeared’ : « around 2200 B.C., he writes, an immense drought reduced the whole region to aridity and famine » (Evidence for Harappan irrigation system in Haryana and Rajasthan -Eastern Anthropologist 1992). Thus around this date, most inhabitants moved away from the Saraswati to settle on the banks of the Indus and Sutlej rivers.
    • India's Self Denial , 1999 and in Rewriting Indian History, 2002
  • The second thing, is that all the great famines of India happened during the British time. Many historians, such as Frenchman Guy Deleury, have documented the economic rape of India by the British : “Industrially the British suffocated India , gradually strangling Indian industries whose finished products, textiles in particular, were of a quality unique in the world which has made them famous over the centuries. Instead they oriented Indian industries towards jute, cotton, tea, oil seeds, which they needed as raw materials for their home industries. They employed cheap labour for the enterprises while traditional artisans were perishing. India, which used to be a land of plenty, where milk and honey flowed started drying” (Modèle Indou)… According to British records, one million Indians died of famine between 1800 and 1825, 4 million between 1825-1850, 5 million between 1850-1875 and 15 million between 1875-1900. Thus 25 million Indians died in 100 years ! The British must be proud of their bloody record. It is probably more honourable and straightforward to kill in the name of Allah, than in the guise of petty commercial interests and total disregard for the ways of a 5000 year civilisation.
    • India's Self Denial , 1999 and in Rewriting Indian History, 2002
  • We know that the Greek Demetrios Galianos had translated the Bhagavad-Gita and French philosopher and historian Roger-Pol Droit writes in his classic “L’oubli de l’Inde” (India forgotten) “that there is absolutely not a shadow of a doubt that the Greeks knew all about Indian philosophy”. Alain Danielou quotes Clement of Alexandria who admitted that “we the Greeks have stolen to the Barbarians their philosophy”. And even William Jones, the XVIIIth century linguist of British India, noted that “the analogies between Greek Pythagorean philosophy and the Sankhya school, are very obvious”. German philosopher Shroeder had also remarked in his book “Pythagoras und die Inder” that nearly all the philosophical and mathematical doctrines attributed to Pythagoras are derived from India, particularly the Sankhya school.
    • Arise again, o India,1999
  • Thus, even today, one can hardly find a single reference to Indian philosophy in modern text books. “For instance, writes Roger-Pol Droit, one cannot come across a single mention, in the Dictionary of Philosophers, of the Buddhist philosopher Asanga, whose works are probably as important as those of Aristotle, nor his books can be found in libraries...
    • Arise again, o India, 1999

2000s edit

  • We also witnessed firsthand the basic hostility of Amnesty International to the plight of Kashmiri Pandits. Sunil Bakshi had repeatedly sent invitations to them three weeks before the exhibition. I personally called the head of Kashmir at Amnesty International several times as well as Ingrid Massage, the director, Asia & Pacific Program of Amnesty. First she told us they only reported on first hand facts, I replied these were photographs and statistics which nobody could dispute. Finally, after ten phone calls, she said she had too many files on her desk and that she had no time to come, although the exhibtion was a few blocks from her office. So much for Amnesty's sense of justice.
    • Who cares for the Pandits?, Rediff, July 30, 2004 [1]
  • "Muslims are bullies and Hindus cowards," Mahatma Gandhi once said. He was right -- at least about Hindus.
  • At some point, after years or even centuries of submitting like sheep to slaughter, Hindus—whom the Mahatma once gently called cowards—erupt in uncontrolled fury. And it hurts badly. It happened in Gujarat. It happened in Jammu, then in Kandhamal, Mangalore, and Malegaon. It may happen again elsewhere.
  • Then, one of the devotees quietly started humming a bhajan, maybe as ancient as the city of Kashi itself:"Om namah Shivaya, Om namah Shivaya "; and soon all of us joined him softly, so as not to break the magic spell of the silent silver night. After a moment, Sri Sri closed his eyes and seeing him totally absorbed, perhaps in some mystical realm, touched our soul as nothing else could. There was an atmosphere of stillness and serenity. In a corner, a girl started shedding quiet tears of ecstasy an elderly man joined his hands in a silent prayer, a wordless gesture of deeply felt gratitude; everyone shone with intense inner joy, bliss and wonder. As for me, to my surprise, the constant chattering in my mind had become quiet; my soul soared high in the air. Only this perfect moment WAS.
    • Francois Gautier - The Guru of Joy_ Sri Sri Ravi Shankar and the Art of Living-Hay House (2008)
  • This year, most of the sources have dried in Almora and there is hardly any water, when the summer is still far away. “It’s because of Global Warming”, we often hear. There is some truth in that, but what our friends do not say, is that unknown to the Indian general public, there has happened over the years a massive deforestation of the Himalayas. In Almora for instance, gone long ago are the oak and indigenous forests and in the twelve years I have come, I have not seen any afforestation done in the surrounding hills. Even worse, the locals could not care less ! Not a day passes by in the area where we live, without one of the few pine trees left being surreptitiously felled down and even the poor mimosas do not escape the villagers’s wrath. “It’s because they feel the forest belongs to the Government and not to them”, says a local NGO. Is it ? But we have witnessed the same phenomenon in Auroville, Tamil Nadu: every time the local villagers are angry after the foreigners there, they cut the trees planted for their benefit ! No doubt the Government of India, which allowed the massive deforestation of the country after Independence, is the main culprit; but in the Kumaon hills, there are also literally thousands of NGO’s, doing woman empowerment, village empowerment, this empowerment, that empowerment, this khadi, that khadi… But bare for two or three of them such as Chirag, Arohi, or NTGC, nobody does tree planting. “It’s the Forest Department’s fault, they are too corrupt”, many NGO’s claim…

The Ferengi’s columns, 2001 edit

  • SRINAGAR, May 30, Election Day. It's a small Hindu temple on the banks of the river Jhelum, lost amongst the hundred and one mosques of Srinagar. Its entrance is heavily guarded by BSF forces and it is protected by sandbags on all sides, as it has been hit recently by a rocket fired by militants. Inside, a handful of Kashmiri Pandits are still trying to preserve this sacred place, where a natural lingam is said to have emerged 3000 years ago and where their forefathers have worshipped for 20 generations. "We were once 30,000 in this district of Srinagar," remembers Shyam, a Hindu priest, "but today we are only two hundred. All our brothers and sisters had to flee. Our houses were burnt, our women raped, our sons killed". Shyam and his friends offer us a cup of tea and some biscuits and we leave this temple which seems to be doomed, wondering why nobody ever reports about it.
  • In Tripura, for instance, there were no Christians at independence, the maharaja of the state was a Hindu and there were innumerable temples all over the State. But from 1950, Christian missionaries (with Nehru’s blessings) went into the deep forests of Tripura and started converting the Kukis. Today, according to official figures, there are 120.000 Christians in Tripura, a 90% increase since 1991. The figures are even more striking in Arunachal Pradesh, where there were only 1710 Christians in 1961, but 115000 today, as well as 700 churches! What to say of Mizoram and Nagaland, where the entire local population is Christian! The amount of money being by poured by Christians into the North-East is staggering: The Saint Paul’s school of Tripura, for instance, gets an 80 lakhs endowment per semester. Which Hindu school can match this ? No country in the world would allow this. France, for instance, has a full-blown Minister who is in charge of hunting down "sects". And by sects, it is meant anything which does not belong to the great Christian family, particularly if it has Hindu "pagan" overtones…
  • When Vasco de Gama, landed in Kerala in 1498, he was generously received by Zamorin, the Hindu king of Calicut, who granted him the right to establish warehouses for commerce. But once again, Hindu tolerance was exploited and the Portuguese wanted more and more: in 1510, Alfonso de Albuquerque seized Goa, where he started a reign of terror, burning "heretics", crucifying Brahmins, using false theories to forcibly convert the lower castes, razing temples to build churches upon them and encouraging his soldiers to take Indian mistresses. Indeed, the Portuguese perpetrated here some of the worst atrocities ever committed in Asia by Christianity upon another religion.
  • Christianity has always striven on the myth of persecution, which in turn bred "martyrs" and saints, indispensable to the propagation of Christianity.
  • There must be at least three hundred foreign correspondents posted in Delhi, which should vouch for a variety of opinion. But if you give them a subject to write about - any subject - say Ayodhya, the RSS, fanatic Hindus, secularism, or Sonia Gandhi, and you will get two hundred and ninety eight articles which will say more or less the same thing, even if it is with different styles, different illustrations and various degrees of professionalism. This is not to say that there are no sincere western journalists who write serious stories which do homage to India’s greatness and immense culture; but they are usually the exception.
  • Now compare this with the attitude of the BBC during the Kargil war. Most of us foreign correspondents know by now that the Pakistanis are training, arming and financing Kashmiri mujahidins. We also know that Pakistan is sponsoring international terrorism, whether in New York or in Sinkiang and is a closed ally of the Taliban, one of the most fundamentalist and dangerous forces in the world today. Yet, for the last 10 years, the BBC has kept on with the old refrain : " India SAYS that Pakistan is training Kashmiri militants, an accusation which Islamabad refutes". By insisting on mouthing this absurd statement, even during the Kargil war, when the whole Western intelligence knew that most of the militants manning the heights were Pakistani soldiers in civil, the BBC thought that it is practising impartial journalism. But who are they fooling ? Everybody is aware of the strong Leftist bias of the BBC (nothing wrong in being Leftist, as long as you don’t pretend to be impartial), who has always defended Muslims separatists all over the planet, whether it is the Palestinians, the terrorists in Chechenya, or the Kashmiri militants. Unfortunately, the BBC has so much of a reputation in the world (and indeed their documentaries are first class), that it shapes the opinions of our editors in Paris or Bonn, who in turn put pressure on us to report on "Hindu fundamentalism", or the "poor persecuted Kashmiris".
  • Kalaripayat, literally "the way of the battlefield, still survives in Kerala, where it is often dedicated to Mahakali. The Kalari grounds are usually situated near a temple, and the pupils, after having touched the feet of the master, saluted the ancestors and bowed down to the Goddess, begin the lesson. Kalari trainings have been codified for over 3000 years and nothing much has changed. The warming-up is essential and demands great suppleness. Each movement is repeated several times, facing north, east, south and west, till perfect loosening is achieved. The young pupils pass on to the handling of weapons, starting with the "Silambam", a short stick made of extremely hard wood, which in the olden times could effectively deal with swords. The blows are hard and the parade must be fast and precise, to avoid being hit on the fingers! They continue with the swords, heavy and dangerous, even though they are not sharpened any more, as they are used . without guard or any kind of body protection; they whirl, jump and parry, in an impressive ballet. Young, fearless girls fight with enormous knives, bigger than their arms and the clash of irons is echoed in the ground. The session ends with the big canes, favourite weapons of the Buddhist traveller monks, which they used during their long journey towards China to scare away attackers.

2010s edit

  • I have never hidden behind a pseudonym to say what I think. I have been one of the rare western journalists to defend Hindus. I have done it openly, in my own name, with dedication and courage and that has cost me a lot.
  • Nevertheless, they did their fair share of harm to India, which has not yet really recovered from two centuries of Raj. Their brutality, whether the hangings of Indian nationalists, or the incredible ferocity which followed the great Indian Mutiny, or the massacre of Jallianwala Bagh, are today part of history. They ruled for two centuries with the unshakeable conviction of their own racial superiority which made Fitzjames Stephen, the philosopher of the Indian Civil Service, say: “Ours is essentially an absolute government, which has for base not the consent of the Indians, but their conquest. It does not want to represent the concept of the indigenous population of life and government and can never do, because then it would represent idolatry and barbarism. It represents a belligerent civilisation and nothing could be more dangerous than to have in one’s administration, at the head of a government founded on conquest—implying in all points the superiority of the conquering race, its institution, its principles, that men who hesitate to impose themselves openly.”
    • A History of India as it Happened: Not as it Has Been Written, 2013
  • Finally, Westernisation through television and advertisements, is sweeping across India, and this may be the greatest danger, as westernisation has killed the souls of many Asian countries.
  • Sonia has achieved such terrifying power, a glance of her, a silence, just being there, is enough for her inner circle to act; she has subverted so much of the instruments of Indian democracy and she controls such huge amounts of unlisted money that sooner or later this 'karma' may come back to her under one form or the other.
  • Indians today live in a country where mullahs can preach secession, while Hindu gurus revered by millions of Hindus are the target of ridicule, media attacks and police assaults.
  • I believe that the ancient knowledge that stands behind Hinduism is a truth the world needs: why life ? What happens after death? What is karma, what is dharma ? How the divine manifests himself or herself, at different times under different names, with different scriptures…. That knowledge which once roamed the world, from Mesopotamia to Greece, only survives today in India.
  • At the end of the interview, I was won over and I understood that this man, who never puts himself forward and seemed most humble, had cultivated kindness and compassion since his early childhood, tirelessly drawing from the teachings of Tibetan Buddhism.
    • François Gautier - Les mots du dernier Dalaï-lama (2018, Flammarion), Prologue
  • Gautier, in his book A History of India as it Happened—not as it has been written, tears into the questionable narratives of Marxist historians and quotes many examples of negationism. He says: “We will never be able to assess the immense physical harm done to India by the Muslim invasions. Even more difficult is to estimate the moral and the spiritual damage done to Hindu India”. Finally, Gautier explains why negationism must be challenged. He says “it is not about vengeance, or of reawakening old ghosts, but of not repeating the same mistakes”. This is indeed central to the argument of Elst, Frawley, Gautier, and Bhyrappa. Secular, democratic India must know the truth and make peace with it.

2020s edit

  • I often faced a lot of hostility from the sub-editors who would censor my articles.

Quotes about François Gautier edit

  • Christophe Jaffrelot is also one of several French India-watchers who have exerted pressure on the French daily Le Figaro to fire its (allegedly pro-Hindu) India correspondent François Gautier.. This stamps him a fine member of the select club of opinion hegemons who prefer to enforce their hegemony by silencing dissidents rather than facing them in debate.
    • Elst, K. (2010). The saffron swastika: The notion of "Hindu fascism". I. 298.

External links edit

Wikipedia has an article about:
Modern Hindu writers 19th century to date
Religious writers Mirra AlfassaAnirvanAurobindoChinmoyEknath EaswaranNisargadatta MaharajRamana MaharshiMaharishi Mahesh YogiNarayana GuruSister NiveditaSrila PrabhupadaChinmayananda SaraswatiDayananda SaraswatiSivanandaRavi ShankarShraddhanandVivekanandaYogananda
Political writers AdvaniDeepakGandhiGautierGopalJainKishwarMunshiRadhakrishnanRaiRoySardaSastriSavarkarSenShourieShivaSinghTilakUpadhyayaVajpayee
Literary writers BankimGundappaIyengarRajagopalachariSethnaTagoreTripathi
Scholars AltekarBalagangadharaCoomaraswamyDaniélouDaninoDharampalFeuersteinFrawleyGoelJainKakKaneMukherjeeNakamuraRambachanRosenMalhotraSampathSchweigSwarup
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