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October 19, 2017

Tag: society

June 29, 2017

What went wrong with the perfect society that once was?

by viggy — Categories: social — Tags: , , Leave a comment

Every religion seems to claim that there once was a perfect society where people followed the religion perfectly and hence now they claim to take the current society back to such a perfect society. It is always the initial period of the religion which they claim was perfect but then for some reason people stopped following the religious ‘way of life’ and hence we have the current society with all its evils. However, they never say why a perfect society disintegrated to such an evil society. If a perfect society existed, how is it then that it could not protect itself from disintegrating.
While I look at different religions, my claim is that each perfect society if at all it existed under any religion, disintegrated because of the rigidity imposed by the people following the religion. Any religion makes a certain section of the society very powerful, those who claim to understand the religion, who claim to implement it amongst the general public. If a perfect society existed, then the way it would disintegrate is when such people who became powerful thanks to the rules of the religion used it to their own advantage to keep their position of power, thus polluting the society and the religion.
Here I should add a disclaimer that while making such a claim, I am assuming that a perfect society as governed by the religion existed in a certain past. I ignore the claims made by many that religion itself was created to keep the powerful in their position of power.
Now, if you agree to the premise that the perfect society disintegrated because the powerful people misused it to keep their position of power, then couple of questions definitely arises.
Firstly, if a perfect society existed due to following of religion, then how is it that it could not protect itself from the very own people it made powerful through its rules. Can such a society claim itself to be perfect society that it cannot itself control the people whom it gave the power.
Secondly and more importantly for those who make such a claim of perfect society of the past, what are the rules/dogmas added in the religion by the people in power to keep themselves in power. How do you identify between the true tenets of the religion against the ones inserted by the people to suit their needs? Is not it important to make such a study if you are trying to bring back the concept of perfect society by making use of the religion.
Caste system followed in Hinduism seems to be a perfect example. Now many followers of Hinduism and apologists of caste system, claim that caste system was more based on work rather than by birth. There is no doubt that it is one of the most corrupt system designed to keep the power of the society in hands of only certain sections of people. Can a follower of Hindu religion, claim to have come out of the caste in which he/she was born into. If not, then how can he/she claim to implement the perfect society of the old times without fixing the very basic tenets which corrupted the system.

July 29, 2015

It is not the person, it is the act which needs to be condemned

by viggy — Categories: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , , , , , Leave a comment

Thousands in India die everyday. Some in their comfortable home, peacefully. Some due to hunger and some due to cold. Some are killed in the road accidents or murdered for petty reasons like money or love. Some are also murdered for their caste or religion in the name of God. Some sadly kill themselves for bad marks, bad love or like the many farmers, just due to bad rains. Each of this death is sad. Each of it needs to be avoided. When each of it happens, we need to hang our heads in shame for not being able to avoid it. Better health care, better support system, better education and whatever is possible by the human kind. What else do we strive to achieve?

All this comes from the recognition of the value that life has, the power it yields to any human and the limitless possibilities that a human is capable of when he/she is filled with life. Often, I have joked that I live to eat and yes, I am a foodie and good food is a great inspiration for me to live. But it is just one inspiration and there are hundreds of other reasons to live your life fully. Places to visit, people to meet, adventures to live through and what not.

Between all this, how can we accept a planned murder, even if that murder is of the most heinous person in the world. The person here is just one actor in the whole circumstance. His/her life ends there and there is nothing more to it. Buried/burnt that body feels nothing. What is more important is the society this act leaves behind. What happens to the society? Should the society celebrate this planned murder? Does the society become more violent after this act or does it become more peaceful. What is the emotion that such an act generate? Does it unify the society or does it instigate people to do more such heinous acts? The killed person is now relieved of impact of any of this and it is the society which now has to come to term with this act.

Yakub Menon or Ajmal Kasab, each individual while committing their crimes had a choice to not do it. The results of their act was very deplorable, very heinous, very cruel. They made their choice mainly because they could not accept the vastness of humanity. Society while executing the person also has a choice to make. There is no glory in killing another human being, especially in cold blooded, planned execution. It tells us that we as humans have given up on the fact that the person can change, that we have nothing more to reason with him/her, that in the vastness of the humanity, we cannot find a single place for that particular life to fit in. I cannot agree to this hopelessness in humanity.

Following is an intriguing para from the George Orwell’s essay on Hanging:

It is curious, but till that moment I had never realized what it means to destroy a healthy, conscious man. When I saw the prisoner step aside to avoid the puddle, I saw the mystery, the unspeakable wrongness, of cutting a life short when it is in full tide. This man was not dying, he was alive just as we were alive. All the organs of his body were working — bowels digesting food, skin renewing itself, nails growing, tissues forming — all toiling away in solemn foolery. His nails would still be growing when he stood on the drop, when he was falling through the air with a tenth of a second to live. His eyes saw the yellow gravel and the grey walls, and his brain still remembered, foresaw, reasoned — reasoned even about puddles. He and we were a party of men walking together, seeing, hearing, feeling, understanding the same world; and in two minutes, with a sudden snap, one of us would be gone — one mind less, one world less.

 

May 5, 2015

When government is the oppressor, corruption is the way of living

by viggy — Categories: social, Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , , Leave a comment

As usual, I took a KSRTC bus to college today. As usual, I bought the ticket from the conductor and as usual he wrote the change that he owed me on the back of the ticket. After one stop from where I had boarded, the Ticket Checkers boarded the bus. These are people who do kind of surprise visit to the bus and check if the conductor has given tickets to all passengers and if there are passengers who are travelling without buying a ticket.
Generally, passengers and bus conductors have aversion towards each other. I used to think that this may be because the conductor doesnt give change properly, or may be rude in the way he/she talks to passengers. Conductor also doesnt sometime stop the buses on the stop. I had always thought that it was due to these daily friction that passengers dont like the conductor.
Today as usual, the Ticket Checkers checked all the tickets of the passengers. The conductor was very prompt and had given tickets to all the passengers. Hence the Ticket Checkers did not have any complain against him and hence he did not have to bear any penalty. Usually if any person is found travelling without tickets, the conductor has to pay the penalty of Rs. 300 from what I know.
After the Ticket Checkers left, conductor like a student who had just passed his exam, sighed. Some of the passengers started talking amongst themselves and with him, saying that Ticket Checkers were very disappointed, they did not get any reasons for penalty and during the discussion, I could see amazing solidarity of the passengers with the Conductor. He also was talking to them nicely and passengers were abusing the Ticket Checkers as people who always want to loot, etc.
This is when I realized that the reason why there is aversion between passengers and conductor is not because of bad behaviour or something. It is because for the passengers, he is the face of the oppressor called government. Everytime there is a hike in ticket prices, everytime they have to travel in fully packed buses, they blame the government and they see the conductor as the person representing government.
In that moment when Ticket Checkers came to check ticket, Conductor also became a part of the oppressed and hence they were easily able to show solidarity with him. This solidarity takes the form of corruption, when the government employee, to a large extent oppressed himself joins hands with the general public.
People blame the traffic police who catch them for violations as they see them as the face of the government. However the same police may becomes a friend when he gets the job done going against the rules as there is also on the side against the government.
Say politicians who earned crores of ruppee in Coal Scam may be corrupt but because they get the work done through the government for the local people, their corrupt acts are completely ignored because for people these are people just cheating the oppressor.

December 29, 2012

Why I cannot only grief for the Delhi Rape Victim

by viggy — Categories: discussion, experience, social — Tags: , , Leave a comment

For last 2 weeks media has been talking about the Rape victim and our young people protesting on the road have ensured that the issue is kept alive. All of them are asking for stringent laws, some even talking of death penalty for the six accused. Amongst all this, unfortunately the rape victim who had suffered brutal injuries has passed away.

From what I hear in media, it seems the whole Indian youth seems to have connected to that girl and feel sorry for her. However though I do feel sorry for the victim, I am not sure why the whole country is suddenly talking about this case in particular. Rapes have been happening in all parts of the country with victims and also the accused from all strata of the society. We have several politicians who are themselves accused of raping. Army personnel and police have been regularly been blamed for torturing and raping women living in sensitive parts of the country.

I do not have the solution for stopping rapes in the country, I do not know if stringent laws will ensure that sex starved men will think twice before raping somebody or I do not know if the problem is not in the laws but in the society itself which keeps discriminating women right from the time of her birth.

However my concern is that how is it that the youth of India are able to connect to this victim and not to normal poor people that they see dieing due to hunger or lack of shelter or due to curable diseases. Isnt it also brutal. Isnt these cases that we see more often in our day to day life?

There are hundreds of people begging, many of them children below age of 10, how is it that the youth can take to streets for this particular rape case and not do anything for such children. Whose responsibility is to provide food and shelter to these kids? If government should provide security and ensure safety of people going to late night movies and parties, isnt it also responsible for the safety and well being of this poor kids. How is it that the Indian youth cannot see these people? Have we filtered our sensitivity only for people of middle class and above.

Do the youth really think that the beggars on the street who hardly have any shelter are safe from such rapists? Forget rapists, what about climate. When we sit cozily inside this chilling winter, how is it that we cannot think about the people living on the streets? Why not hold government accountable for not providing shelter for such people?

What we have seen in past is that youth of India come to streets only on matter that concerns to them? Remember protests against caste reservation? Remember protests against corruption? And now this. Have youth of India taken to streets for farmer suicides? What about the various issues that tribals have been fighting for decades now and which has lead to become what the Prime minister of India calls as “The single biggest internal security challenge ever faced by our country.”

Does it mean that even youth of India are selfish which awaken only on issues concerning them. Then how can they blame politicians who also are selfish and hence concerned about issues that concern them which primarily is doing whatever it takes to be in power.

It is important for youth of India to be wide awake and being sensitive to happenings to other people to whom they can relate to but I hope they will also come forward for reasons that concern the people who are voiceless and to whom media pays little attention.

To conclude, I am sorry for the rape victim, but I am more sorry for people dieing due to hunger or curable diseases or due to lack of shelter.