Tuesday, October 28, 2014

LIving off Inherited Glory

I, along with Shilpi, Niranjan, Rashi, and Varadharajan, had been to a very interesting magic show in IISc this Sunday. The magic show had a very interesting theme: thoughts and philosophy of D. V. Gundappa, a famous Kannada writer. Each item was presented with a very nice philosophical commentary taken from the great writer's work. I felt the concept was unique and was presented brilliantly!
One criticism though. Certain lightly said things, like how we Indians have always known various scientific theories while they have been discovered only in the last couple of centuries by the West. I feel, those weren't in a perfectly good taste. I am sure, this was some sort of inadvertent misquoting of the great DVG. As a joke, it's fine. However, certain things make it undesirable: over-repetition, unsubstantiated claims, and feeding a nationalist ego of people (us) who anyway want to believe those stories.
I feel, as a nation, we Indians are going through a very difficult phase. We have been handed down a very low self esteem resulting from centuries of difficult times. I think we are recovering, though very slowly. In such conditions, one thing that's not going to help is to get deluded by any unsubstantiated claims of our superiority (as well as inferiority). Particularly based on stories, whether real or imagined, of the glories (or shame) of our ancestors. We must stop trying to live off inherited glory, and stand up for ourselves. Of course, we should beat our drums aloud, but only when we have something great to show that's created by us, the current Indians.

(reproduced from my Facebook post)

1 comment:

Sambaran said...

Completely agree. This 'everything was in ancient text' syndrome demeans and insults the ancient-texts too. We need to do something to feel good about present. We should not have to hark back to past.

On a related note,
Ja India r khetrey applicable, bangali der khetrey sheta aar o beshi relevant.