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When India came under the British Empire the native Indians had to be colonised and made subservient to that empire.So the colonial education programme was started and at the forefront of this were educationists who were also christian missionaries who applied the art of inculturation.

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Of these, Francis Whyte Ellis or ‘Ellis Durai’ in Tamil, was a Madras-based civil servant in the British government and Samuel Green a doctor in Sri Lanka; both supported missionaries in evangelical causes. Meenakshisundaram termed the era of these evangelists as the “Golden Period” of Tamil in his book, , originally presented as the author’s thesis at the University of Madras, 1966.

All the above mentioned missionaries landed in Tamil Nadu with one “holy” aim of converting Tamil Hindus and christianising Tamil Nadu. So it is all the more imperative for us to demolish this myth of Christian contribution to the development of Tamil and bring out the truth.

He claimed the was the “Lost Veda”, the “Jesuit Veda” revealed by God, and was considerably successful in harvesting souls. Wherever you go, I will present myself before you as your guru”.

Fortunately for Tamil Nadu, his European masters were not happy with his inculturation methods and subjected him to an enquiry which forced him to shift to other places like Trichy and Salem. But it contributed nothing to the development of the Tamil language. The Sage embarks on his yatra and one day reaches the temple at Uttarakosamangai near Ramanathapuram.

Finally he settled in a small house in Santhome, Madras, and died in 1656. De Nobili is supposed to have written some 15 books apart from preparing a Portuguese-Tamil dictionary. How could the biography of a Christian saint help the growth of Tamil? Pope, has not recorded that story in any of his works. As he didn’t get the of Bhagwan Shiva, he feels let down and unable to bear this parting, with mounting sorrow and emotion sings a hymn earnestly praying for Bhagwan’s appearance.” Explaining the above context, G. Pope infers, “The serene and beautiful environment prevailing in Uttarakosamangai Temple was too ‘testing’ for Maanickavaachakar to continue his sanyas.

He is credited with the insertion of many biblical terms in Tamil and no wonder Christianity was developed rather than the Tamil language! The next Italian missionary, Constantine Joseph Beschi (1680-1746), called himself Veeramaamunivar (Veer-Maha-Munivar) to pretend he was a great lover of Tamil. He then came out with another work ,, was honoured by Dravidian racists who installed a statue of him on Marina Beach. In the same period, a German missionary Barthalomaus Ziegenbalg (1683-1719) also worked in Tamil Nadu and called himself Ziegenbalg Iyer. He also remembers his family life in Madurai married to a beautiful woman, and the patronage which he got from the Pandya King.After capturing power and establishing Crown rule in 1858, the British government gifted vast stretches of lands to the churches and supported them with other infrastructures.They knew that the combined onslaught of political and religious power would produce quick results.As Christianity expanded leaving in its trail genocides,pillage and the destruction of indigenous pagan traditions it couldn’t always break the spirit of the common people it persecuted who still prayed to the old gods and celebrated them in most cases secretly.So the church had another method of destroying the ancient traditions by Christianizing the traditional pagan festivals and legends.Speaking about the beginning of Christian encroachment, Subbu says, “The Dutch established their trade centres in Pulicat (Pazhaverkaadu) in 1609, Sadras (Sadurangapattinam) in 1647, Nagapattinam in 1660; the British set up shops in Masulipatnam in 1622, Madras in 1639, Cuddalore in 1683 and also in Calcutta; the French got Pondicherry in 1674 and the Danish settled in Tranquebar (Tharangampaadi) in 1620.” He adds, “On one hand the Padires straight away indulged in conversions and on the other hand they started creating rift among the Hindus to divide them.” In the chapter “Trisakthi Publications, Chennai, 2010; pp. As part of the agenda of grabbing political power and converting the population, the Christian missionaries, to destroy the native culture, also indulged in “Inculturation”. The man who laid the foundation of inculturation was the Italian priest Robert de Nobili (1577-1656).

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