Codes of reality!
What is language!
Now, let me talk about how I do define myself. I have very rarely worked for others in India as an employee. My total working for others as an employee would not exceed one year, at the most. The rest of my life, I had spent on building up various kinds of businesses, in varied fields. Almost all of them would very fast reach a cul-de-sac, as if predesigned by life.
Another feature of my business life would be that I would be engaged in different kinds of business activities that were connected to varying social strata, at the same time. Usually no one from one stratum would know what I was doing in the other strata. So that I did experience persons of very low intellectual levels making comments or criticism of me, knowing only a very small slice of what I was engaged in professionally.
Apart from all this, I was always confronted with the question of what I was. Usually a man can answer this question fast. Some would say: I am a construction worker, I am a doctor, I am a teacher, I am a writer, I am a typist, I am a government employee and such. However, I was never sure as to what to say about myself.
There were times, when I was involved in real estate brokerage, pharmaceutical manufacturing business, chemical wholesale business, wholesale vegetable interstate business, fruit interstate business, writing, philosophising, teaching English, internet based business and many other things at the same or different period/s in life.
Each of these activities would be connected to different types of persons, and also to many kinds of government departments; with few persons knowing what all I was involved in. The issue here was that in Indian languages, a person’s professional level or level of profession had a lot of defining power over what words are used to refer to him, and what words he has to use to define others.
Even in these times, I wouldn’t know what to answer to the question as to what I was. I was not quite happy to satiate the curiosity of empty-headed guys who asked this question in a wary manner so as to measure or compare me with themselves and their achievements. For, I was not quite really interested in being in a competition with any vernacular feudal language speaking person. In all times of competition, I would keep out or simply give up, unless I found the competitor to be of quality. The very fact of competing with vernacular thinking guys would give me a creepy feel.
However, I had to face this question as to how I would define myself. After much contemplation on this, I have come up with the answer that I am a scientist in a higher level of science, a social scientist, and also a social engineer.
I have seen many persons claiming to be scientists. They would be making this claim on the basis of some educational qualification, I suppose. However, it is my understanding that a scientist is one who does scientific experiments, observations and enquiries about any particular field of human knowledge. So just having post graduate educational qualification or a doctorate does not mean that a person is a scientist.
However, since these persons are scientists, I would prefer not to define myself as a scientist.
As to being a social engineer, I have successfully engineered many persons, and many a miniscule social systems using the software called English. It may not seem to be a very powerful claim, for English is a common language in many parts of India. And not many persons do believe that English has changed them. However, I usually used English in areas where English was a rarity.
Moreover, I did get others in these areas to understand that there is some strange and wonderful difference English can make in themselves and their social system. However, I must admit, this liberation that I inserted into others did hurt me at times, as most Indians have a habit of simply going amok in the issue of verbal respect as they get to feel the first experience of mental freedom. And I would usually be the first casualty as I would be the only person available for them to test their new found freedom.
Many of the persons who benefited from my insistence on using English never acknowledged my contribution to their achievements.