Being a Hindu and an atheist
As a post script to a post on Advani and the Babri Masjid demolition, Amit Varma had this to say about himself:
By "Hindu", I mean Hindu by birth. I am an atheist by practice. Actually, um, how does one practise atheism?
If a beast slain in the Jyothishtoma rite will itself go to heaven,
Why then does not the sacrificer (yajamana) forthwith offer his own father?
Hinduism is very loosely defined, or perhaps it's something that cannot be defined. I guess one is a Hindu as long as one says that one is not! I can be a Hindu today, a non-Hindu tomorrow, and a Hindu again the day after, eating beef today, being a vegetarian tomorrow, and indulging in blasphemy the day after.
Update (June 6): Vishnu has an excellent post on similar issues: Am I a Hindu?
(*) Here's the actual shloka:
Live merrily as long as you can. Drink ghee and even a debtor be! When this body is reduced to ashes, where is rebirth?.