Thursday, Dec 09, 2021
Outlook.com
Review

Alter Ego

A charming account of a boyhood in the Himalayas

Alter Ego
Alter Ego
outlookindia.com
-0001-11-30T00:00:00+05:53

The son (and grandson) of American missionaries, he grew up first in the mission compound at Etah, and later in the midst of Landour's '60s conservative missionary community. The hippie culture of the period was at odds with orthodox Christianity, and at Woodstock even Alter had doubts about religion in general and his own faith in particular: 'I came to accept the fact that I didn't believe in God. From time to time I tried to search within myself for some hint of faith, encouraged by friends and teachers at Woodstock, but there was nothing there, not even the slighest trace of conviction.... Instead, I was turning against the self-righteous, charismatic forms of Christianity that were so prevalent in Landour, the hysterical preaching of fundamentalist missionaries who believed that India was full of satanic evil and that they and their brethren had taken it upon themselves to save the souls of eight hundred million sinners.'

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