Sunday, February 26, 2012

A Conversion Story*

Around 400 years ago, the Portugese landed in Goa. The Kulkarnis and Deshpandes living in Goa welcomed them for trade and commerce. Portugese being Catholics, built a few churches and practised their religion. As mandated by their religion, they tried to convert the Deshpandes & the Kulkarnis into Catholics by inviting them to see the love of Jesus. However, the natives refused.

So the Portugese hit upon an idea. A novel idea from some (devious?) scheming minds! The Portugese spread the idea the bread they ate was impure and it had the flesh of Jesus in it. Technically true, since all Christians claim that the bread given in the church indeed has Jesus' flesh. So, if the Hindu brahmins ate it, they would become impure and would no longer be Brahmins. This led to the Kulkarnis and Deshpandes to avoid the bread like the plague. Once it was established that folks who ate bread would become impure and lose their religion, the Portugese now were now ready to execute the second part of their plan.

The Kulkarnis and Deshpandes shared a village well to draw water. The Portugese now secretly threw the bread into that village well one night! The bread sank to the bottom. The Kulkarni & Deshpande families drew water from the well normally for their daily use in drinking, cooking, etc. The bread became lighter and started floating on the water after some days. Now, all villagers who had consumed water from the well were impure! The other Brahmins (stupid narrow-minded @$$h03$) ostracized Kulkarnis and Deshpandes. Sensing an opportunity, the Portugese swooped and convinced the Kulkarnis and Deshpandes that they were now Christians since they had consumed the flesh of Christ. The Ks and Ds had no option but to convert and they were now christened Carvalho and D'souza respectively!

I wonder how gullible we would have to be to be converted in this fashion. And how devoid of morals were the Portugese Catholics who used these tactics to convert locals into Christianity.

*As narrated by a Carvalho whose uncle researched their history to unearth this.

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