Sunday, February 24, 2013

India: Blowing a Broken Trumpet

In Japanese tradition - the three wise monkeys, sometimes called the three mystic apes, are a pictorial maxim. Together they embody the proverbial principle to "see no evil, hear no evil, and speak no evil". The three monkeys are Mizaru, covering his eyes, who sees no evil; Kikazaru, covering his ears, who hears no evil; and Iwazaru, covering his mouth, who speaks no evil. Sometimes there is a fourth monkey depicted with the three others; the last one, Shizaru, symbolizes the principle of "do no evil". He may be shown crossing his arms. These monkeys no longer represent the reality and the needed attitude in the present.

Looking into the past for over 500 years: The trends for a nation to be an economic powerhouse were always changing over the course of time – earlier, during the times of segregated, small-scale kingdoms; it was more of a class struggle between the powerful ruling class and the largely ignorant working class. As the class struggle gave rise to a nationalist flavour; nations have emerged fuelled by scientific advances and achieving economies of scale in production and trade. Competing for supremacy and imperialistic behaviour of the nations replaced the erstwhile class struggle as the defining trend.

In 20th Century, the imperialistic behaviour was on a decline – largely because of globalization and knowledge exchange: a necessity to connect across nations and co-exist took prominence. The class struggle of the present is between the oppressed and a skewed imperialist class – and it has begun. One ugly face of this struggle is the advent of terror as a tool of class struggle. The growing need for any nation in the modern times is to work for stable existence and stay largely insulated – for terror can impact economy and the budget spend allocations; which will adversely affect nation’s outlook.  To live in the present – one needs to be vigilant, observe and listen to what is happening around one-self. These three set of principles are in stark contrast to what is depicted and celebrated as a maxim – The Three wise Monkeys.

India has always been a contrast singular experiment – with largely successful kings administering over a huge stretch of land in the past to non-aligned/ anti-imperialistic beliefs in the recent past being a significant feature. Though, resurrection (with the present possibilities that India holds) within a span of over 50 years after a 200 years of horrid slavery should instil a sense of achievement; there are multiple facets of Indian Society that need attention  and should be set right –  especially in the modern times, India needs to adapt and work for stable existence. We will need to revamp our security apparatus and work for a secured future – we will have to set it right, before we blow our trumpet.  

-  Abhijith Jayanthi