I made a tweet yesterday where I said I will go to the Ram temple. A number of bhakt respondents assumed I was talking about one very specific Ram temple. Did I miss a memo? Did India turn into Vatican City when I was asleep? Since when has Hinduism been a one-temple religion?
A simple thing you can say to a bhakt who is waxing eloquent about the importance of one Ram temple is that there are millions of Ram temples in India. Some are small enough to be inside homes. Some are maintained by colonies. Some are little more than thatched huts in villages.
Some are shared temples. Some are temples where the name of Ram is spoken despite his murti not being there. Tell the bhakt that none of these temples are more or less important than each other. Tell him that a temple doesn’t become more important because it’s more expensive.
If bhakts really gave a shit about their own religion, they would know that every temple and every deity is a reflection of the same divinity they claim exists. If they really cared about anything other than appearances, they wouldn’t turn their religion into a ticketed space.
The shrine that an old woman has built with her hands in a remote village is as much a Ram temple as the marble and granite mammoth that politicians boast about in election rallies. I would imagine that any “true Hindu” would know this without having to be schooled by an atheist.