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
22. The façade of tolerance
Let us now discuss the theory of India being a highly tolerant country since times immemorial, cradling immense philosophies, religions and social structures without any history of persecution of the populace. It is very easy to argue and establish this fallacy to be true. However, actually this is not a correct picture. The truth is that India is a very intolerant nation. The geographical region of South Asian subcontinent was so for a long time in the past. What motivates people here is not spirituality, as is usually declared and believed. What really motivates all social and individual actions in this society is the need to achieve socially structured respect.
This abominable greed for respect is the thing that has shaped this nation through the centuries, and is still taking it to perilous paths, lead by low calibre leaders and bureaucrats, with nobody having the strength to even point out the danger that is evident to all. For, the greatest danger a man in India perceives is a situation where in the lower guy comes up in social life. This personal danger has more implications, than any other problem the society may face.
The subcontinent was always divided by horizontal lines, which repeat one above the other and not as a nation divided by vertical lines. The society is structured into stages of level, one on top of the other. Each level is dominating some other level. Whenever a new religious protagonist arrive, if they join the higher hierarchy at the top as a new team along with them, then no problem, for they would only be again reinforcing the system. They would also have a senior position in society, from where the language indicants would allow them to dominate the rest of the lower level of society. Nobody is much disturbed. Actually the dominating sections would enjoy the intellectual dynamism, the new comers bring. Moreover newer ideas could entertain them by giving them an opportunity to indulge in theoretical exercises in the fields of logic, spirituality, adhvaida*, exotic religious practices, etc. in a society which remains intellectually stagnant for most part of the day, and better part of several millenniums.
Hinduism, the so-called popular religion, is only the religion of the Brahmins. As to the other castes, they were really outsiders to Hinduism. Spiritual rites were practised in accordance with one’s caste level, each level having certain rights, and the lower levels having to do with progressively lesser levels of rights and privileges. So, the competition was not between different religions or philosophies, but between different caste levels. Actually, there could be no competition, as each caste level was immutably fixed in language and social hierarchy.
If a group of people of another religion or even of the same religion, that is Hinduism, try to improve the social structure, by bringing in education, right to equality, government job, water, housing, and many more things like feelings of assertiveness etc. to the lower people, it is another proposition altogether. For then, one would get a rare taste of how very tolerant* India is.
However, it is not correct to summarise that it is the higher-ups who are the culprits. For it is not the truth.
For, everybody, in all levels, is equally the victim of the same system, which allows only a hierarchical social system to exist. If you interact with both the levels, you would find that both sections of people have similar prejudices and insecurities. However, one is more fortunate than the other. So, even if the lower levels were made superior to the other, only a reversal of role would take place, not a permanent conducive social atmosphere. The language doesn’t allow equality of interaction. In such an enveloping atmosphere, erroneous social reactions repeat, even if one tries to correct them, for centuries
In this regard, one may think of the noble face of Hinduism that prevails in the English world. The innumerable number of holy men, and saintly persons, who have travelled west to help the West with the ancient spirituality of India, do present a very benign picture of India. But here, one major thing that is missing is the Indian feudal communication software. In its absence, the whole Indian philosophies do acquire a most benign and lovely attire. It turns into a spiritual apparition that does not exist in India.
To put it more forcefully, one may note that in spite of having so much literature in Sanskrit and Tamil, on philosophy, Yoga*, Mantras*, Religious discourses, Tantrik * rituals etc. not many people from the subcontinent had access to gain knowledge in any of these themes. In fact, most of the people were barred by social conventions, and strictures to have access to any of these items. In fact, they had no connection to these things at all.
It may be not far from truth to say that it was the English rule that opened up these knowledges for the access of the common people in British-India.
The fact is that even to this day the government of India, with deliberate purposefulness see to that the immense number of technological advances that come out of the English countries do not reach the common man. Earlier it was the phone, the TV, Audio Cassette Players etc. Now it is the modern things like Internet, Mobile Phone etc. Actually to suggest that the lower level of persons should have access to these things does disturb a senior member of the society. Yet there is some level of truth in suggesting that the lower man should be lower, for otherwise the communication set-up would stand disturbed.
I remember an incident a few years ago, wherein I told an acquaintance who was an officer in a Uniformed Service, that in a few years time cellular phones would give the right of using wireless phones to the common man. He immediately went into a deep, disturbed mood. He couldn’t bear to think that the petty, common citizen should be given such rights. For, such fancy items as a wireless phone were the privilege and right of the government officials.
So many social forces have been set free by the British, which were not intelligently guided by the leaders of Independent India, that all these forces are now turning out to be a Pandora’s Box*.