Hindus concerned at proxy baptism of Jews by Mormon Church, Baltic Review
In view of reported proxy baptisms of some prominent Jews, concerned Hindus have urged The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS) to set-up a mechanism to avoid baptizing by proxy their deceased ancestors without their will.
Hindu statesman Rajan Zed, in a statement from Nevada (USA) today, said that although they had not received any reports yet of such proxy baptisms of deceased Hindus by LDS, but they were simply concerned after learning of posthumous baptizing of parents of a well known Jew, whose names were not submitted for baptism.
Zed, who is President of Universal Society of Hinduism, pointed out that Hindus did not mark death as the end of existence. Ancient Hindu scripture Bhagavad-Gita (Song of the Lord) referred to death as abandoning of worn-out clothes and acquiring new ones. Hindus believed in reincarnation with moksha (liberation) as a goal; which brought end to rebirth, embodiment and death.
Rajan Zed stressed that ancestors had always been highly important in Hinduism since ancient times. Hindus followed sraddha, pitryajna, pinda, etc., rituals for their ancestors. Hindu feelings would naturally be hurt if their ancestors were baptized without their will.
Zed noted that Hindus and most probably other faith communities worldwide would be willing to work with LDS to build bridges of understanding. He further said that they would gladly support the LDS endeavors if they made a good-faith effort and organized a meeting of various religious groups to come-up with a mechanism so that mistakes, errors, breaches and misunderstandings did not happen in the future in the area of proxy baptisms involving non-LDS ancestors.
Hinduism, oldest and third largest religion of the world, has about one billion adherents.