Friday, 10 March 2017

Confused Generation: Declaration of Identity

The war on traditional values has created a lost, angry, confused generation

What if one morning after we wake up, we wear a mask which is socially impressive, we wear the dress which is trending in the market and we go outside in a completely different form than what we really are. And what if, we do this every day continuously and after a long while we completely forget who we really are and become a product formed by the social market. 

Assumptions of society, consumptions of society and the need to be socially acceptable has made people lose their real self, made people loose the roots of their identity in the daily race of life, eventually, the life stands in mid of a competitive race, a quicksand of marketable needs. The quicksand of marketable needs makes your identity sink in it and makes you believe that your true self is inferior without even making you explicitly know it.

Why I am telling all these? Because the market is a big utilitarian monster and it is constantly making you a significant part of its body. 

I will be talking about Identity Crisis, the declaration of identity, conflict of traditional values and modernism, and the inferiority complex attached to the past values/ideas/tastes etc. 

In a generation where we start with I am a good ****, I have these achievements ****, I am a femi****, I am b****, I am, I am and I am, there is a problem to make people realise the base on which someone is declaring their identity, is the I am a ***** is coming from their true self or is it coming from their created self of the market, and how to distinguish and realise them. When we are a liberal individual, a feminist person, a democrat unit, does that mean to make yourself lose to a market which is predominantly killing ethics, killing the human values, which allows one being to connect with another, which promotes love, affection and other unmarketable, unquantifiable values? You kill love by materialistic views, by bodily pleasures, you kill friendship by 'give and take' relationships and by judging the utility you are getting. These may seem to be very simple issues but, deep lies the problem covered with flowers of today's joy. The Identity you hold may be multiple and inter-conflicting, you may be a professional hypocrite and yet you may have justified your hypocrisy by regarding it as a need of the market of professionalism. Professionalism, does it tells you to improve your true self to a crystal identity or it tells you to hide your true self with a crystal identity? This is an important thing to ponder. If we dip into the philosophy of Stoicism, "according to its teachings, as social beings, the path to happiness for humans is found in accepting that which we have been given in life, by not allowing ourselves to be controlled by our desire for pleasure or our fear of pain, by using our minds to understand the world around us and to do our part in nature's plan, and by working together and treating others in a fair and just manner" .  

Let's pick up examples of an Identity crisis, how you fear to present your true identity because, it will be humiliated, treated as inferior, and how you adapt to other identities which are treated as superior and followed by the seeming majority in the market. Certain gestures such as a smile, politeness is also a part of the identity and when you are a person who is outspoken, frank and adapt to fake smiles, be polite and humble in front of relatives, superiors, knowingly or unknowingly you create an identity which is not what you are. It's has not become the dilemma of choosing an identity but, it is now using the identities in suitable places. Such multiple identities make you a programmed human being rather than a natural being with strong integrity and certain consistent principles. 

You declare our formal identity before the people with whom you maintain or intend to maintain a formal relationship and while you do so, you suppress your inner identity which makes you comfortable and makes you feel to be yourself. For certain people it is the other way round, hence, the declaration of identity has become the new contention among people. 

In India, among my generation of youths, they are trained to be hypocrites, they are taught the art of manipulating their own self and remaining a comfortable opportunist. The problem is, at the same time, we celebrate the occasional traditionalism and regard it or at least consider it when it is a status symbol which is occasionally and in other times, the modern western, logical and scientific thoughts rule the mind. Hence, feminism restricts women to go out in the night, liberalism sets an autocratic family structure, secularism proudly says why his/her religion is superior to others. 

Such identities are majorly market driven and we fail to have anything of your own. We had, but, we no more have. As we have been treating our own language, own dressing styles, own country as inferior, when we look back, we have nothing of your own but, only of others. To stick to one thing to explain the issue, language is extremely political and when a language is mocked at and an inferiority complex is attached to it then, it is time for a revolution to reclaim the language. It shows that some political power has taken the soul of the language. 

As you must have realised, I have not concluded anything and have only raised certain issues, and I leave it to you for further thought process and commentaries. 

Saturday, 18 February 2017

Commentary on Sedition & response to Soli Sorabjee's Column on the same

     Column of Soli Sorabjee: Sedition by Soli Sorabjee

      “The duty of a true Patriot is to protect his country from its government” – Thomas Paine

 When Thomas Paine was charged with sedition, in summer of 1792, he answered the sedition and libel charges thus: "If, to expose the fraud and imposition of monarchy ... to promote universal peace, civilisation, and commerce, and to break the chains of political superstition, and raise degraded man to his proper rank; if these things be libelous ... let the name of libeler be engraved on my tomb."

‘Sedition’ perhaps, appears to be a tool of the Government of the State to protect the Government from destabilisation by the troubling questions which the citizens’ might raise of which the Government has no answer or perhaps, it is dangerous to answer those questions for the Government. When the Government operates with such a notion, the Government becomes less of a Government and more of a deity. The form of Government, for instance, ‘Democracy’, becomes analogous to Religion where, the Government becomes the supreme lord and any objection against the supreme lord would be regarded as ‘Blasphemy’, in such a way, Blasphemy becomes analogous to Sedition.  

  Mr Sorabjee has rightly said in his article that yes, no Fundamental Rights is absolute in our Constitution. As Article 19 (1)(a) gives right to freedom of speech and expression, Article 19(2) says about the reasonable restrictions imposed on it. Sedition, as defined under Section 124 A of IPC, is not to be interpreted literary and the definition has been redefined by SC in Kedarnath Singh v. State of Bihar which should be taken into consideration. Mr Sorabjee brings the incident of Divya Spandanaalias Ramya, who in response to Defense minister’s statement differed, and recounted that people of Pakistan are hospital, should it be taken as Sedition? A state may not have a favourable relationship with state B but, in such case should appreciating State B be considered as sedition? That would mean, appreciating one is resulting in the insult of the other, is it so? Above all, is sedition above Truth? Should we give sedition the authority to label us as ‘anti-nationals’ because, we uttered the truth, because we expressed our true opinions fully understanding the repercussions, if so, then it means, in the name of ‘national interest’ which more than often intersects and overlaps with ‘government’s interest’ we can or we have the legality to butcher truth, if truth is having potential to expose the inhuman and bloody side of ‘national interest’. Nowadays, in the market, national interest comes with a mask, sold by the self-proclaimed political babas. Romanticising national interest has grabbed the market with such force that any people telling anything against the nation’s activities attracts verbal punishments and then legal. Recently, as Mr Sorabjee has also mentioned, Amnesty International was booked under sedition as in Bangalore they organized an event regarding the Human Rights violation in Kashmir, arguments took place among the gatherings, some supported the Indian Army and, others blamed them for violating the rights of Kashmiris, later part, few people started raising slogans demanding Azadi for Kashmiri people. We must ask ourselves the question, what should prevail if, following National Interest or doing something in the said name, results in a violation of Public Interest or the interest of Humanity in general or Human Beings? When Supreme Court said Indian Army committed 1528 fake encounters in Manipur then should we regard the act of Supreme Court as ‘Anti-National’? Shouldn’t truth be a valid defence of sedition? In India, the trial takes place first in the Public through the media and then media gives out the judgement with the tag ‘Anti-National’, ‘Nationalist’, ‘Bhakt’etc. And much much and much after that, the Court comes out with its judgement but, the reputation of the person had already been decided by then among the public. What will happen when the Government becomes the most ‘Anti-Public Interest’ while pursuing ‘National Interest’? Mr Sorabjee, however, agrees on the significance of the existence of Sedition, but, what I think is, Sedition helps to maintain the stability of the state, which is the main purpose and the means to achieve that is by maintaining the stability of the Governments, in a Banana Republic even a State has to perish. There must be a reasonable immediate nexus between words and the influence in the public, if the words are not having any immediate potential to inflict violence and destabilise the Government then it shouldn’t be regarded as Sedition.

  Revolution may be considered as a wider part, of which Sedition is a very small part. If we see Aristotle’s causes of revolution, we will see that gross inequality is one of the main causes of revolution. In a Democracy, the demagogues try to be inclined to the capitalist class and maintaining good relationship helps both, the lower section of the society is less bothered and considered by the Government. Wide inequality may give birth to hatred and disaffection towards the established Government. As per Aristotle, revolution is not desirable, because he knew without the stability of political system good life will never be possible. To maintain that desirable stability, he recommended the establishment of ‘Polity’ i.e. the rule of the middle class, which will be able to remove the gross inequality among varied classes and this corresponds to his basic cause of revolution namely, inequality and injustice. The government must legislate to maintain the stability of the state and for this, Aristotle suggests the Government should be sincere and honest, no hide and seek with the citizens, the Government must not try to fool the masses. When people will come to know the reality they will revolt and ‘sedition’ may be witnessed if the Government is not ‘for’ the People. The Government must attempt to establish a good relation with the people. The government must make sure to be such a Government that there is no need to use the Sedition law in the state, the Government must maintain a harmonious relationship with the demos. To maintain the stability of the Constitution, the most effective way according to Aristotle is a system of education which is ideal for the existing order.   “Neither must we suppose,” says Aristotle “that any one of the citizens belongs to himself, for they all belong to the state, and are each of them a part of the state”. Which essentially means the people must learn the values and norms of Democracy, the spread of education is a vital factor of stability, it prevents disorder and chaos.

“It is useless to have the most beneficial rules of society fully agreed upon by all members of the constitution, if individuals are not going to be trained and have their habits formed for that constitution.”    - Aristotle         

Tuesday, 22 November 2016

The new you.

Among the new roads to walk on,
new airs to breath in, new clouds to float on,
I saw you in a new you.
I found you as a light-house in a lost ocean,
defeating the waves, I was the lone swimmer,
among your smiles, I was the lone thinker,
among your hair curls, I was the lone survivor,
don't you know ? Well, I never said!

You touched my lips by the air of the city,
the city which has never been mine,
You made me stand by the hope of the paths,
the paths which know the smell of my tears,
You came to me like the sand dunes of desert,
the desert where my dreams were just a mirage,
You came to flow away, and my tears accumulated,
the world didn't even allow my tears to flow, but, you to go.

When you left, it was the ice in my fist which evaporated,
I ran  to you like a child runs to the mother,
I cried for you without tears, perhaps like Devdas did for Paro.
The river doesn't stop flowing for the lovers,
the lovers feel glad to encounter the river.
Perhaps, it is not the life which will see you again,
but, you will appear in my poems from time and again.

Thursday, 21 July 2016

Taste of Thoughts

The dingy lane with an old friendly fragrance 
takes me to an unfamiliar known arena of thoughts,
where seemingly justice smiles, 
where love cries with a voice,
where smiles are smiles built with nothing but, feelings,
where the warm palm of a close friend comforts the heart,
where ideas drench in rain, and tears hide behind it,
where a sip of coffee with a gentle smile can wash away time,
where mathematically care is not evaluated,
where genuine is genuine but, 'where' is only a dream.