World Beyond Illusion

Month: April 2020 Page 1 of 2

Did We Get The Concept of Patriotism Wrong?

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From every day of singing National Anthem & Song at the school, lessons of history books, Knowledge of the Heroes of our freedom struggle, and their acts of valor; we became quite familiar with the fact that it is our paramount duty to Serve The Nation That Serves Us.

However, even after a lifetime of education and learning, we were never told ‘Exactly’ how we’re supposed to serve the purpose from our respective places in the society when at the same time we’re struggling to sustain, grow & succeed in life. This begs the question “Do we have any understanding of the task we, collectively, have to accomplish or we’re just doing more damage than good?”

Patriotism

Love of one’s country, Devotion to the welfare of one’s compatriots

Each one of us can conjure a different interpretation out of these words and after all that mental labour we’re bound to become excessively eager to justify it against all others, but it is important to realize the difference between a thought and a fact.

Nationalism is not Patriotism

Nationalism should not be confused with Patriotism. Both words are used vaguely that any definition is liable to be challenged, but one must draw a line in between.

The idea of dividing people in herds of citizens by borders, only to classify them as good or bad respective to them being inside or outside is absurd. Yet we’re not talking about Nationalism as a term attached only to a Nation; it can be a class, religion, or some other units. It may work in a negative sense against other unit, without ever needing the positive object of loyalty.

A nationalist is someone who solely thinks in terms of competitive prestige, he may be using his energy for better or worse, but regardless of his efforts his thoughts always focus on victories, defeats, triumphs, and humiliations. To him, history is nothing but an endless rise and decline of great power units.

A nationalist is always scared that the past can be manipulated, so he works incessantly to arrange every detail of history as it should be in his vision. He takes great pleasure in the thought that the nation or unit he backs is constantly on the upgrade and some detested rival is on the downgrade.

All of this is very unhealthy as it makes you blind to reality, stops you from seeing things as they are instead you start to cherry-pick events and details to support your presumed opinion. And even if they qualify to enter the equation, they hardly ever are accepted as facts.

As Voltaire (French Enlightenment writer historian & philosopher) stated

It is lamentable, that to be a good patriot one must become the enemy of the rest of mankind

George Orwell (English Novelist, Journalist & Critic) in his ‘Notes on Nationalism’ drew a brief but precise distinction between Patriotism and Nationalism in the lines –

“By ‘Patriotism’ I mean devotion to a particular place and a particular way
of life, which one believes to be the best in the world but has no wish to force upon others. Patriotism is of its nature defensive, both militarily and culturally. Nationalism, on the other hand, is inseparable from the desire for power. The abiding purpose of every nationalist is to secure more power and more prestige, not for himself, but for his nation or another unit in which he has chosen to sink his individuality.”

The most important thing to realize here is the fact that nationalists of such kind, like astrologers, survive all of their mistakes and misdeeds, because we as unaware and devoted followers do not look to them for an appraisal of facts but for the stimulation of nationalistic loyalties.

Faith & Communism is not Patriotism

We indulge in a routine of obtaining things that were promised, satisfaction-peace-nirvana-greater knowledge & awareness of self and the world we inhabit, without directly working towards it. We follow it, in one form or another, from birth till death. It has been occurring for such a long time that we’ve started to belive, that only those of the same belief deserve to live around us, or much worse, have any intention of coexisting for the betterment of society, nation, or the unit we think we belong to.

We not only hesitate in marrying our children outside our unit and declare our god as the one true God, but we also go beyond that threshold. The nature of this crime is so subtle that our mind do not detect it as our malevolent effort to gain supremacy for our unit. We start to display some sense of superiority, not only in military power or political virtue but also in art, literature, sport, language, structural beauty of inhabitants, climate, scenery, and food.

Here the realization of the conspicuous yet lesser known fact, that there is no accomplishment in merely taking birth at a certain place, in a certain race or religion, is necessary.

Conclusion

It is sufficient to say that there will never be a step by step guide to Patriotism but just by constant learning to be aware of our thoughts, actions, most of all their consequences and with the power of reason we can eventually acquire a human understanding and decide our role for the betterment of the people without even minutely harming others beyond our reach.

But to do that first we need to get rid of false lessons ingrained in our environment because If this kept on going it will only lead to the fall of democracy and death of reason. And almost all of us will stop registering all atrocities, committed under the veil and inside the borders of false patriotism, as atrocities and the rest will be labeled as traitors.
   
As Samuel Johnson (A prominent literary figure), indicating false patriotism, famously stated

Patriotism is the last refuge of the scoundrel

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Revisiting Shahrukh and Aamir’s ‘Intolerance’ Remark

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On 24th February 2020, more than two months long peaceful protests against the controversial CAA-NRC-NPR, suddenly turned violent and resulted into riots in East Delhi. Several people injured, death toll is still increasing with each passing day and many were arrested. And just like any other debate that we’ve seen for the past six years, people were desperate to find the culprit on the basis of their religion, name, clothes rather than their crime. This debate itself is a distraction. Some are blaming Kapil Mishra and some Tahir Hussain, but are they capable of orchestrating these riots alone?

What happened in Delhi has its roots way back in the 2015 when the cases of mob lynching started surfacing. The term lynching may sound too normal because conditions have worsened far too much since then. But is this not bizarre that people were killed only for their “suspected eating habits”? No major action was taken against those killers, instead some were rewarded for their atrocities. Is this not a matter of concern when murders are ignored by the government, misrepresented by media, and rewarded by Neo-Nazi groups?

This concern is the reason behind the conversation of “Religious Intolerance” at that time. Shahrukh Khan and Aamir Khan both addressed their concern regarding the issue but were accused of fear mongering and asked to leave the country. This was done not only by the politicians but people also and this slowly made our society immune to hate crimes. Possessed with the idea of Modi = Nation, people labeled any form of criticism as Anti-National. They still do.

Five years after, now we’re seeing people being attacked both tangibly & intangibly, for what they’re wearing, what they’re speaking, what their sexual orientation is and most prominently what faith they belong to. This hate, the cases of sedition against concerned celebrities and now even common citizens, and all those brutal lynchings make up the amalgam of what we see as Delhi riots. It happened at the time when an international dignitary was visiting India and Our prime minister still didn’t care to even look at the situation. If you still see these killings as an act of valor and Modi as some God who shouldn’t be questioned for his responsibilities, then you need to remind yourself that hate has no religion and if you let it grow, someday it will knock your door too, as Death.

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Was Bhagat Singh an Egoist? | Why I am An Atheist Review

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Whenever any Indian hears the name of Bhagat Singh they get filled with pride as he was a revolutionary who has inspired countless Indians, particularly youth to stand against injustice and oppression. Though Bhagat Singh was not alive at the time of Independence he had surely paved the way for it to happen. But even after the entire glorified tale, he has faced the allegation of being a vainglorious person or an egoist as he didn’t believe in the existence of an omnipotent, omnipresent, and omniscient God.
Seems shocking? A person who is so respected for his love for the Nation was an Atheist? But, yes he was and why you maybe don’t know this about him because he was always portrayed as a young man filled with rage and passion for his country and bombed some assembly, but that’s not it. He has defended this allegation of being an Egoist by writing an essay “Why I am an Atheist?” while he was in prison around 1930, discussing the changes he went through which made him gave up all his beliefs and follow realism. So let’s find out who was our folk hero, just a brave story or an ideology?

How he was brought up?

Bhagat Singh was born in a Sikh family with many ancestors who have fought in independence movements and also in the Maharaja Ranjeet Singh’s Army. His grandfather was an orthodox Arya Samajist. Though his father was a liberal man yet he too was a dedicated religious person. He got his education in an Indo-Aryan School. Thus, he spent his childhood around the people who were not atheists; on the contrary, they all were dedicated believers. At this time he was a dedicated believer too. But, after he joined the National College he started questioning and criticizing the whole notion of the existence of Gods or a God. But he was puzzled as even after the lengthy discussions with the people he admired he reached nowhere as they just simplify the whole notion by saying ‘Pray whenever you want’ but he was not satisfied with the answers as no one around him has justified the existence of God. Thus he got no sufficient arguments to believe in God and not enough to solve his doubts.

Cry for Study

Before he became a pronounced atheist, Bhagat Singh described himself as only a Romantic Idealist Revolutionary as he was just following others but now the time came to lead, and for that, he wants to arm himself with the arguments to face the opposition and so he turned to study. He studied Bakunin, Marx, Lenin, and Trotsky. Things that were common between these people were that they all led a successful revolution in their country and they all were atheists. And after that, he gave up all the mysticism and blind faith in 1926 and became a realist as he was now convinced that the theory of an Almighty who created a countless light-years big Universe in that some thousands of kilometers big Earth and in that average 170 centimeters long Human and all this just for judging them is, baseless.

Man of Reason

Bhagat Singh explained the importance of reasoning power which is the real reason how he came to be an atheist. He believes that a person has to challenge what is prevailing; he must question and try to understand the surrounding with direct proofs. And he believes that our ancestors lack direct proofs so they try to solve the problems of past, present, and future just by philosophy. And because of that, we have different kinds of faiths that have different notions of how this world came to be and how it is going to end. He presents his idea about the origin of God that God was an imagined being that encourages a man to face his dangers, thus a consequence of weakness. As belief softens hardships, they even make them pleasant. And on the verge of life, it will make death poetical. And such thinking is not progressive so a man who favors progress must criticize false beliefs and challenge old faith.
He explains British rule is here because they have guns, rifles, military i.e., power and not because God wills it. He criticizes God to be a dictator by saying if he is watching all this and not doing about it he must be enjoying it then. He even suggests reading Charles Darwin’s Origin of Species to whom who want to counter him with questions like, how life came into existence if there is no God to create it?

Was he an Egoist?

His arrest for the 1929 Assembly incident made him popular, he became the topic of conversation now as this event of bombing marked as an Anti-Gandhian so he was quoted egoistic but he believes even Mahatamaji can be questioned as this mentality of not opposing just following blindly is not progressive. He was not doing all this for hoping to be king in his next birth as he was an atheist so it was not because of ego. And he explains as an informed man he believes in reasoning and after careful study, he denies the existence of God.
But, is all this relevant today? Haven’t we all are living in a broad-minded world? We have improved for sure but things are going very slow. Still, people are killing in the name of God, political parties fighting elections in the name of God, and maybe you are too named after God. Bhagat Singh too believed that “Killing an individual is easy, but you cannot kill the ideas.” And this is what it is; an ideology of the following reason then things around us will change. Then there will be real peace or else, the powerful will keep dividing us according to our caste, creed, color, or gender and will misuse it. So whatever you are and whatever you are going to be; Study and Reason, then eventually it will make sense.

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मुख्यधारा तंत्र

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लगती है बड़ी भीड़, कुछ तो खास बेच रहे है,
चमकीले कागज़ में लिपटी बकवास बेच रहे है।
सफेद पुता हुआ झूठ बेच रहे है,
हमारी कम अक्ल का सबूत बेच रहे है।

पहले काली घाटी में आत्मा ढूंढा करते थे,
आज कल लोगो में काला दिल ढूंढ रहे है।
पहले झुग्गियों में सुविधाएं ढूंढा करते थे,
आज कल रहिसों की मुश्किल ढूंढ रहे है।

कही बिन मुर्गी का अंडा ढूंढ रहे है,
कहीं पहाड़ बनाने को राई ढूंढ रहे है।
कही मासूम के हाथ में डंडा ढूंढ रहे है,
और कही मासूम चेहरे वाला दंगाई ढूंढ रहे है।

नेताजी की दिनचर्या में बलिदान ढूंढ रहे है,
और मल उठाने वाले का आत्मसम्मान ढूंढ रहे है।
“तुम खतरे में हो” जैसी बात से भर रहे है सबके कान,
और हर खबर में दोष मढ़ने को मुसलमान ढूंढ रहे है।

सोचेंगे आप भी लोग खरीद क्यों रहे है?
जब ये बे सर पैर की बात बेच रहे है।
पर जब से जलते हुए घरो को, लोग शौक से देख रहे है
ये भी तभी से उनकी राख बेच रहे है।

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