Truth is expensive, it does not come cheap. Truth is not something many girls face everyday through molestations, rapes and harassments. Truth is not how Police behaves with “weaker” sections of society and definitely not how politicians manipulate every other incidence for their benefit. Truth is much uglier, truth is much deeper, and truth is expensive. It can cost us our “cute, cuddly inflated ego” which we have built over years that says “We can change the world!”; Give me a break, we cannot change the world. Who are we? Mere animals…..insignificant as chickens in butchers shop. Cut, sliced, cooked and served…..HOT! Only to be crapped out next day.
The truth is, we have to change ourselves. Painful isn’t it? Why should I change myself, I am the most perfect creation on Earth, I am priceless. Yeah, it sounds nice when mamma told us that way. But the truth is we are the chickens, remember? Served hot on plate. The truth is, it is people among us who molest those girls. People among us who let those policemen think we are weak. People among us who think those politicians can do whatever they want. People among us who think that the stupid fairness cream ad on TV is going to change my world; or the coffee can make me cooler. Well good news is “Starsucks!”. There is no magic wand that can change our boring and coward world into a fairy land! We got to put our ass on ground, and work like one. Work towards the change we always wanted, be the one.
It was around this time last year when there was a wave in India about changing the scene of corruption in India. A movement named “Anna” blew the conch to remove corruption with Satyagraha. Seeking truth? Where is the campaign gone now? I recently heard Anna ji saying to a news reporter that their campaign is on and that the media do not cover. Well, yeah Annaji, you are close!
Satyagraha, a concept mastered by Mahatma Gandhi. Apparently so it helped us getting freedom from the British Rule….wow! a touching story. Almost all of us have spent our childhood admiring those figures of struggle without arms and how we wished we were there. Just like we did on stage during Annual Functions in school. Living a life of ascetic, he strived to seek truth, to ascertain truth, his Satyagraha.
But wait a minute, I am reminded of a quote from Sarojini Naidu, “it cost the nation a fortune to keep Gandhi living in poverty”. Yes, that’s precisely my point. Truth is expensive.
Anna ji went on with sheer philosophy that he can turn the tables with the popular Satyagraha theory of Bapu. But I do not remember him reminding us that Mahatma was a campaign supported by the Congressmen, the elite of pre-independence era, who never touched the villages to understand where the real India lived, but they wanted freedom for India. Err….let me correct, take the rule from British for themselves to enjoy the pleasure.
I also remember a scene from the movie “Gandhi” where the Gandhi is making his first speech among limited congressmen that how they have ignored the majority of India in this fight. He put a new idea for “inclusive struggle for freedom”. I remember the way Nehru looked at Gandhi in that scene, quite an opportunist, as his dreams got a new meaning, the dream to Power. Wonderful depiction by the actor I must admit.
So essentially Gandhi was a mask for inclusive struggle which was sponsored by the Congress, the wealthy people, who could afford a feeble man’s noble ambitions to mimic poverty for years to come and create a symbol out of it. SYMBOLS, don’t we Indians love them? We are full of symbolism, from Shivalinga, Shiva, Hanuman, Vishnu, Matsyavatar, Narsimha to Damini, we like symbolism. We like to fancy the “idea of freedom”, “idea of justice” and “idea of truth” and transform them into Satyagrahas in our ways, where in reality, we run away from “freedom”, “justice” and “truth”.
Again, Satyagraha is not cheap. Anna needs such muscle to run his campaign before he could actually make an impact. Anna’s Satyagraha needs financial machinery that can challenge the existing machineries. But how do such big machineries can build when most of the wealth is controlled by the existing ones? It is a big question. Politics feeds on money, and money rules a country. A poor nation cannot talk big talks like America does. It does so because it can afford it, and that……..is not truth!
The shift of political power cannot happen unless there is a shift in economic power. We can keep cursing BJP, Congress, SP, BSP and all other political parties for myriads of issues we are facing, but in reality they are all funded by same corpus. We can change that only when we change that corpus. Power does not change, it migrates from one hand to another. We cannot change the world, we can only change ourselves by setting examples. By not giving in to the system, but strive to build a system, to be the system.
“Sometimes the truth isn’t good enough, sometimes people deserve more. Sometimes people deserve to have their faith rewarded” – Batman from Dark Knight Rises
There is a stark different in comments from two great leaders world ever had, both from different parts of the world.
“Be the change you want to see in the world” – Mahatma Gandhi
“….because the ones who are crazy enough to think that they can change the world, are the ones who do” – Steve Jobs
While Gandhi came from a political background, Jobs was from commercial background. A political environment is about “point of views”, the borders are made in our minds before they are drawn on a map. Our point of view make these borders, that drive our association and partition from people, it makes religions, states and countries. We cannot change points of views, even if we are right. Therefore, we cannot change the world. People are too busy with their opinions.
On other hand, we must “becomes our point of view”, we must translate our ideas and ideologies in to actions, something that is tangible, and something that can be seen, felt and realized. Only then we can have the attention. When they see a touch screen, fully loaded device in hand, only then they can believe that days of sitting at desk in front of a screen are over. That grabs the attention and makes us worth listening. The world will change itself when it has something to see, something to believe. But in reality, nothing changes, they shift from one thing to another, habit remains same. In essence, nothing changes, people need something to follow. The question is whether or not we can change the world, but the question is “can we be that alternative”. And creating an alternative power needs enormous backup, strength to counter the one before us. We cannot win a battle with wooden sticks and that precisely why movements like Anna’s flash away before they glow.
I understand more now “WHY GANDHI CREATED CHARKHA”, it was beyond congress, beyond politics, it was entrepreneurship. It was self-sustainability, self-reliance …..that to me is real freedom.
Sure there is anger within us, we all need change, but we are not yet there, we need to steam up our anger, push our desires farther, Satyagraha is not enough, seeking truth is not enough, because the Truth does not exist. We must become the truth; our ideas must become the reality.
As wise men say, this is a “maayalok”, where there is no truth. How can we expect truth in an ever changing world? Truth is beyond, which we are afraid to see. We know this deep within, that there is no truth, no Satyagraha. We cannot change the world; we have to change ourselves, to replace the existing “apparent reality”. But we are afraid within, tucked in tightly in our comfort zones because it is easy to say that “the world must change”, but far difficult to “change ourselves”.
We are consumed by ideas of fancy things that we can buy, in return we are happy to give away our freedom. We are locked in this perennial cycle of slogging, earning and spending, programmed to earn money for businesses with our blood and sweat and happily go and spend our share for buying their products. This has to change, we have to change.
Satyagraha has no meaning when it is wary of practicality of world. Candle marches, peace protests hold no meaning. Struggle for freedom has no worth if we are slaves in our minds.
Satyagraha is not on streets, it is a gimmick. If at all we are seeking truth, it is within. Are we really free inside, are we fearless? Are we ready to change ourselves? If we change the world around us automatically changes. That is Satyagraha, the one that is pledged on moist soil of heartland.
Gandhi put the word Satyagraha, but it was not just limited to protesting on streets, it was about real freedom. What Steve Jobs proved in his life – he changed himself and now the world goes ga-ga about him. That is change, that is power that can change the world. Gandhi started using Charkha, to symbolize self-reliance, entrepreneurship and to be free from others, it was not just limited to British, or any other country for that matter. It meant for every other person or organization that is trying to control our life. That is exactly what Jobs proved.
We have come a long journey from Gandhi to Jobs, and to me Satyagraha is not about begging for justice on street, it is about making things that question the established order and that precisely is MY SATYAGRAHA!
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