March of the Evil Empires!
English versus the feudal languages!!
VED from VICTORIA INSTITUTIONS
First drafted in 1989. First online edition around 2000
It is foretold! The torrential flow of inexorable destiny!
Part 2 - Delineation of a feudal language nation
8. Family System
When we consider the family systems of India, there are many undercurrents that are not obvious to the casual observer. In many cases, an understanding which is the very opposite of reality takes place. Without understanding the arduous effect of the feudal language system, and its highly immobilising effect on human psyche, many persons have understood the Indian family as the embodiment of perfection. This understanding is erroneous on different counts. First of all, most of the observations are made either on internationally mobile, English-speaking, highly rich families, who really enjoy the positive sides of both worlds. In India, they exist as a sort of super elite, enjoying the feudal atmosphere to its best. In the English west, they have an environment where they are not tied down to any social position. It may also be understood, that any Indian living in the English countries in ordinary social levels transform into, more or less, very rich persons back in India. This is due to the terrible (doctored) battering the Indian currency* bears incessantly. Many Indians, who live with no foreign earnings, do not know that this is a battering many Indians with foreign earnings welcome with sheer, unconcealed glee.
Another group, which is visible, is the families of Indian bureaucrats, of varying levels, and also that of the local rich people. Both are the recipients of the spoils of the feudal languages of India. Their enjoyment is in existing on the peak of tiny feudal social systems. The lives of the vast majority of Indians, who bear the brunt of the feudalism, are not so rosy.
Apart from the external social factors, inside each family, there is a feudal positioning of persons. The security of each individual lies in seeing that no one breaks out of bounds. In many ways, it is not possible to show off individuality, without absolutely breaking free from the family bonds. For, the indicant words for each level, like father and mother, aunty and uncle, son and daughter, nephews and nieces, elder brothers and elder sisters, younger brother and younger sister, and many other persons are connected by strings of indicant words, which show in each word, who is senior, and who is junior in each relation.
In an closed situation, it is okay. However, the whole family is also interacting with the outside world, which would also be connected to each individual person, according to varying measuring factors. The idealness of the whole situation is lost in the varying measurements given by varying persons to different individuals. Nobody likes to go down. At times, if one bears a grudge to someone, one tries to bring down his respect among others. It is very easy. Just give a wrong measurement to another person about one individual. Immediately, a different indicant word comes out, and that individual’s social level comes down. Along with it comes down his social mobility and capacity to sit and talk with many others. Also any attempt to argue his case is bogged down as impertinence and overstepping the limit.
The problem here is that each social level has a popularly acknowledged level of freedom of articulation. When the level is low, this freedom also is low. Moreover, a lessening in social level is a grave negative factor on all aspects of a man’s attributes.
As I said, there are many strings connecting each member of the family to another person in the family. Yet, these are not just strings, but actually lines of forces, with very impelling powers of pulling, pushing, crushing, coaxing, coercing, intimidating and also subduing. If these lines, which envelope a person can be made visible by any medium, any person in a feudal language social condition would be found to be in a maze of strings, each of them contorting his personality in various manners. Some would also have forces emanating from him to subdue, coax, pull and push others. Yet, just like a file in MSWord, when pasted in Adobe PageMaker in the Text format, loses all lines, tables, drawing etc,; when a person from a feudal language system is transferred to an English social area, all these lines would vanish into thin air.
Indian families, and especially joint families, are thus places of exceeding social tension, and not the ideal place that one is made to believe. In earlier times, because of marked social status for each person and lack of geographical mobility and, more or less, tied down situations for each person in the joint family, this tension may not be very deep. For, there were no other options available on the horizon. However, now each individual, and his wife also, has an identity and sources of income and levels in society that is not necessarily connected to and consistent with that acknowledged in the joint family. Inside the family, the hierarchy may force each person to exist at a particular level, which would not, in most cases, be liked by the individuals concerned. This hierarchy is necessitated by the hierarchy in the language. So, in actuality, instead of what is generally proclaimed, these joint families may have deep and simmering discontent brewing inside. This can outwardly exhibit a cool kind of serenity, which is again not seen in an English world. For, in the English world, when one is angry, one can be angry.
The power a senior member of a family has on a junior is overwhelming, and crippling. And at the same time, not understandable from the English perspective. Let us suppose, a young man of superior mental attributes meets another man of senior age. This second man may have some distant relationship with the young man’s family. When they meet for the first time in a neutral social situation, both would be using the middle level indicants to each other; that is neither too respectful nor disrespectful; that is, both would be at a social communicational equality. Suddenly a phone call comes to the older man from another senior aged person who is a family senior of the young man. Immediately all reference about the young man would go into the lower indicant between them, on the phone. And that too in full hearing of the young man. Immediately the whole social context of the communication between the old man and the young man turns feudal, and the young man goes into the lower indicant. With this, his whole personality has to change accordingly. The other man also changes perceptibly. For, he would become more intrusive in his talk and comments. An automatic right to comment, judge and even advice would be seen to surface.
All this, the young man would have to accept. Otherwise, there would be a social friction that would transform into real personal animosity. The young man has no defence against this assault other than to outright ask the other man to return to the original level of indicants. That too, would require a lot of mental strength. Its long-term result would be a lingering comment that he is very haughty and has a superiority complex that need to be crushed at all costs.
Here the phone call that came suddenly would be a courier of a virus software code, which suddenly infected the communication machinery.
Generally everyone accepts the hierarchy. For each individual person also, does exist as a superior to some other level of persons in the family hierarchy.
There is so much talk on the stability of the Indian family life. Actually, this is also a façade. There is stability. It’s true. However this is not an achievement of positive forces. Actually negative attributes of the social system actually, foster the stability. This stability does not naturally come from a supreme level of fidelity, in comparison with what exists in the English countries.
One of the main obvious reasons is the lack of choice for the women, to first choose a partner, and then later on to measure him in relation to others. Along with this, there are many other factors. However, I need not go into all that, as they are not of immediate connection to the subject matter here.
However, there is a factor that does dissuade divorce. In the Indian society, every other man exists not as a free individual, with equal social attributes. Each man exists at different social heights and levels. Even communication between them in a manner of equal dignity is not possible. Once a man divorces his wife, she may remarry someone else, who would be existing at a sharply different social and indicant level. By marrying another man, the wife not only brings herself to the level of her new husband, but her earlier husband is also brought into this level. In each discussion about him, and in all the legal battles, and also in all social, and family issues, the earlier husband would be forced to deal with persons who are not of his own indicant levels. As is the case of all such forced associations, the experience would be highly distressing, and of real terror.
Moreover, the children would also be forced to undergo a traumatic metamorphosis of their social and indicant level. It may be understood that usually divorced women lose their appeal in a marriage market, unless she comes with a glow and halo of some superior social attributes.
Along with all this is the fact that when one marries into any family, the family’s attributes rub on him, and coat him, either with positive indicant levels, or with negative. Moreover, he exists as a part of a giant machinery in which he is having a special level and place; wherein he is superior to so many persons, and inferior to so many persons. In other words, he is tied up and connected to many other persons, and social institutions, with a web of strings. And as mentioned earlier, in this feudal language situation, when he married, he is connected not just to his wife but to a number of other persons also; all of whom have a certain level of claim on him and his actions.
The same applies to the woman also.
And it goes without saying that divorcing is not merely an action of cutting of ties with one’s spouse, but creating a lot of rearrangements in so many non-tangible social strings, and forces. It is very difficult, possibly more because in India everything that requires dealing and discussing with different levels of people, for achieving anything, is very difficult.
4 - The officialdom
5 - The Police
6 - Efficiency
7 - Women
8 - Family System
9 - Bureaucracy
16 - Dignity of labour
17 - Teacher and student
19 - Economy and its connection with the language of the place
21 - Revolution