Munnabhai, Chanakya and DaVinci Code

Posted August 24th, 2006 by Deepa and filed in Personal
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I saw Lago Raho Munnabhai this weekend. It sounds like Gandhigiri has become the buzz-word of the nation, the relevance of Gandhiji’s values today are being discussed all over. My theories may be a little tangential to the entire Gandhigiri idea but provides my perspective on why it is difficult to follow the values/teachings of certain leaders.

Chanakya’s astute philosophy of “Saam Dam Dand Bhed” is what I attribute the problems in following Gandhism. As per Chanakya’s policy there are various ways to getting your task done: by polite requests (saam), by bribery (daam), by violence (dand) or by creating a difference (bhed). With personalities such as Gandhi, what worked against his principles becoming mainstream is the last one: the most powerful one of them. Bhed is the act of creating a difference between two people, once you make Gandhi a “super human personality”, he is suddenly different from the common man. Many of what he preached was suddenly things that a normal human being could not do…because well you are just a mere moral while Gandhi was a super-man, a demi god. While blaming Gandhi for the several ills that are present in Indian society today, it is the same bhed that everyone is operating under. Gandhi was a human being, he made mistakes: there might be times he did not make the right decisions…so what needs to be done is to appreciate the good things he did, forgive him for the bad ones and move on.

Similarly my theory extends towards Jesus Christ & Christianity too….Like in the Da Vinci code (which is excellent fiction) , Jesus was probably a wonderful preacher that lived 2000 years back…perhaps a gifted orator but none the less human. By providing him with a “godly” status, in one simple stroke we have ensured that several things that Jesus preached can be attributed to the fact that he was “GOD”. Creating that difference is the surest way of making sure that it is not easy to follow the teachings of these “godly” men.

Perhaps, we should be expunge adjectives like godly, out of the world, divine, heavenly from our vocabulary. May be people can be appreciated for the wonderful human qualities they possess. Isn’t it a shame that we think so lowly of humanism that any good traits are perceived to be other-worldly.  When human beings are given godly stature, legends are fabricated around them, truth generally gets buried beneath apocryphal tales, all actions become miraculous making the person’s preaching a tough act to follow.

My piece of worthless crap for the day!