Hind Swaraj

For so long I wanted to read the vision of our Nations’ father -Gandhiji. Whenever he talked to Nehru on issue of India After Independence,he used to refer this work to him . The renewed interest in ‘Non-violence’ & ‘Satyagrah’ as tools for protest, all around the globe, increased my desire to read it. And I bought this thin vision document, which costs around Rs50 in general plus add the import charges. It was a dumb decision on my side.
Later, I came to find the whole book on internet – Open for everyone to read. [check — http://www.mkgandhi.org/hindswaraj/hindswaraj.htm ]

They have whole collection of his work if you are interested.

This is less of book review, more of personal take on it.

Hind Swaraj

By M.K.Gandhi

Indian Home Rule

 

The book is written in the form of conversation between the Editor of newspaper Indian Opinion & its’ readers. It is a compilation of the conversations Gandhi Ji had with the readers. It is divided into separate topics which concerns the future of Home Rule system in India. Gandhi ji answers the questions rattling the mind of the common Indian. Through this conversation he starts to present the picture of his vision to the readers. How he imagine the Indians should live their life under their own rule. The topic goes from meaning of Swaraj to England,Civilization,Condition of India, How to become free, till his conclusion of Home Rule/Swaraj.
Please read the online version if you want to know what actually is written – it will hardly take an hour to go through it.

Now about my views on it. First of all, I would like to point that when I read some persons’ vision – I try to accept all the arguments presented. It helps me understand and have a peak at what the person wanted to convey. Like when I read Mein Kampf by Hitler, I understood his point against Jews as he saw it. The historical time period & conditions do play a role here. And it never means I concur with them .

It’s important to go through all the mud to find the gold dusts in it. There are many lessons from Mein Kampf also. And so I wanted to find some shreds of silver in Hind Swaraj.

Initially, I agreed to his problem with the profession of Lawyers in the society. But then a small conversation with friend bounced me on the other side. The point which was interesting is that – I find similarity in tactics used to resolve inter-office disputes in the corporate. They don’t need any lawyer, they use the established hierarchy & it is solved amiably most of the time. As I understand, he thought that going to lawyers for every conflicts make the conflict permanent in the psyche. There is no scope for inter-party compromise or solution, like self-handling the solution without violence, keeping in line with natural laws & social norms. And the lawyers do suck/depend on quarrels of people for there work. Don’t they?
However, Judiciary is the only governance body which is trusted by the people. His vision for other democratic body has failed today(in some way). Moreover, his prescription would have helped breed more narrow-mindedness & tunnel vision decisions. Imagine Khap Panchayat & Westernization.

I found his problem with Doctors was misplaced. Also the Problem with Machinery of any kind was back-ward looking.Though, I found his methods of protest i.e. Passive Resistance was a watershed in raising voice.

I would like to leave the criticism. Now about the silver linings.
Acc. to me, Gandhi Ji wanted Indians to be dependent on their Soul force to achieve their goals.
The first basic pushing force is sexual(from lizard brain) in nature, so he was for maintaining chastity for life.
The second is money, (from rational mind), which is being used in contemporary world to make people work hard. It has been mixed with the sexual motivation is also being used in a way so as to make people crave for healthy bodies.(Don’t you agree?).

The last one, which is hardest to follow & is independent ,in a way ,is the path of soul. And I can bet that you will agree on this. If you don’t then why the hell books like ‘ Monk who sold his Ferrari’ became so famous. So many management books I have read – with repeated suggestion of self-actualized motivation for living ones life. And as a creative(self-claimed :P) I know how much will-force is required when you make something just for the sake of it.

If you can conquer it than you can conquer the direction of your life & head it anywhere you like. Gandhi Ji wanted each individual to be a self-actualized fountain in him/herself. I found his idea being individualistic to its core; each bonded together in a complex mesh of Hindu(People of India not religious) way of life. Each empowered by the strong will of soul force, healthy body & sharp mind.

Even the visualization of each person being a fountain making ripples in the vast sea of humanity. Each ripple touching, reflecting, penetrating other ripples. The image is so awesome.

Actually, I wanted to find some Business model or Organization model in this work. And to tell you the truth I have formed a picture of it, though its still hazy. Also, the new buzz words disrupting the Organization/Systems like Cooperatives,Share economy, peer-to-peer economy, open models,e.t.c are in some way have adopted his ideas. I tried fitting disruptive entrepreneurs, new technology, social networks and creative innovators in his model – few areas did overlapped with his vision. The new internet technology base may make his vision a possibility in some way or other.

The whole idea of reading Gandhi Ji’s work is to get to the roots of his arguments. And then growing it for contemporary world adding the new innovations as fertilizers.

I will read more of his works & his vision in future. How can Gandhi Ji’s vision be completely ignored, rejecting it as Utopian??
His ways of passive resistance revolutionized the means of Protest all around the world. There is much more one can learn from him.
After all, isn’t it the desire of humans to achieve Utopia, how may impossible that dream be.

Arigato 🙂

P.S – The views are personal as per my rationalization & understanding of his works. One can always differ from them. Also I desire to fit his model into the contemporary models of development,business & productivity. When I read this post – I find some points are not so clearly presented – sorry for that. I visualize the ideas, I am still learning to put them on paper & clearly convey the image to others.

Dream Good, Evil or your way.

Dream, my dear, Dream
Dream away into a distant land

Lay down your shield, keep the sword away
The bed is comfy, so is the sofa
Yawn wide, before your lazy recess
Close your lids, calm your heart
Dissolve into your world of wonder
Look at the galaxy, the stars, the moon…
…the waving road, the brave battle…
…the passion, the lust, the power, the gloom
Don’t go back so soon
Stay a bit longer with me
In this dreaminess tranquility.
Don’t you find it pretty?

Dream, my dear, Dream
Dream away into a distant land

Don’t lower your guard, pull up your sword
The battle is still going, so you are
Open your eyes to your dreams
Play them again & again, it is your requiem
Grab the flag, fight your fears
Find your way, so i am here
…cry, laugh, smile, shout…
…frown, glare, be proud or gay
It is time to stay alive and awake
bridge the gap between tomorrow, today

Dream, my dear, Dream
Dream away into a distant land

Only I hear these two lines so clear
There are whispers also that I bear
Can’t say which I do listen
Is it an Angel or a Devil in the day
Perhaps it is not a quarrel
Good on one, Evil on other 
Rather it is my Soul’s bay 
The only voice which is near
Is to Dream, Dream my way.

Dream, my dear, Dream
Dream away into a distant land

Each day I lay around in bed doing nothing with closed eyes. It looks like a wasted day. I want to be awake & do my studies, along side my other activities. I think it is Evil to waste my time like this. I have to stay awake & keep on moving – letting the angel watch over me. However, the restlessness which stays inside me – hints me that may be it is what my body needs right now. It is never a waste to refresh & re-energize with a good lazy sleep.

This post was part of Dungeon Prompts, by Sreejit Poole. The prompt was:  Good, Evil and the Rules that You Live By.
hope you like it. & get it.

Arigato 🙂

Dungeon Prompts : Inner Voice

Do you remember the last poem I posted. How  – ” Humans are Fish & they fly above the clouds “
That helped me to visualize my inner voice. 🙂
I was thinking about how my inner voice sounds. And I wan unable to hear anything. I could only see some fuzzy things.
Then It hit me – Instead of a Inner Voice I have an Inner Sight. Soul have many ways to talk to you. Showing glimpses can be one of them.

innersight

It is there, behind the foggy boundary, afar from my sight. 
Always looking at me, with those calm bright big eyes.
Trying to illuminate, asking me to look directly into his eyes.
Unable & scared to share the truth, I look around the sky.

With a painful & compassionate desire, it lets the breeze take the message from it.
Forming light & fluffy clouds, moving forward, piling together.
Slowly the big grey cloud takes form, and I wait ,looking up at them.
Waiting for the lightning to poke some holes & let the drops fall free.
As they rain, I try to look into each drop, hoping to get the message from afar.
I find some bits and pieces of the inner voice, while fail to catch many in sight.

The task to understand them then starts.
Confusion, Frustration, Anger follows hand in hand with Joy and Excitement
I feel bliss at times, falsely perceiving the big picture in my mind.
It is false sometimes, sometimes it is not.
All this time the Eye looks sympathetically onto me.

Trying to tell me, that fool, look down on the surface you stand.
It is not a solid opaque floor for dance.
It is the eternal ether containing all my message for you.
It is the surface where all my projections are stored.
Just let those drops drop on the floor.
And reflect upon the mirror, there lies realization of myself & yours.
If you don’t want to look directly to me then look into the projection.
Don’t be afraid my boy, be brave, like your heart is.
Truth may be painful but it is truth nevertheless.
Listen to me so we both can be free.

Arigato 🙂

P.S – This is part of Dungeon Prompt: Week 3 – Inner Voice. I thought of putting it in a story format but  I liked it in this form. Can anyone tell me what one calls to paras like that??
The picture was made by me.( fast work) One day I will refine it further.
Also, one of my friend made an analogy to this figure with MATRIX concept. Like the drops being only part of code & the big picture is stored in the image of the system itself. We had an amazing chat on that. 😀

Am I a…

I wrote a line on my status yesterday – ” Humans are Fish & they fly above the clouds “.
You can take/derive what ever you want from the above line. For me, its one of my fantasist imagination which comes to me often or sort of regularly.
Below is something what I came up with, while thinking about that state.

 Above the clouds the celestial ocean lies
 In the blissful light, the soul flies
 Looking up at the Earth , smiling with the eyes
 Trying to pull me into the waters
 To share the rays eternal
 I turn him down, lock myself up
 Afraid of the shining, which may burn me away
 to the Ashes of non-existence & nothingness
 Again & again raising the question:
 A piece of Flesh with a soulful heart, Am I?
 Or a Phoenix that will again rise.

Arigato. 🙂

The Power of Myth

by Joseph Campbell with Bill Moyers

Rating: 3.7/5

I came to know about Joseph Campbell through one post of Steven Pressfield which was about the Hero’s journey. This Hero’s Journey has been the structure of many contemporary hollywood & of course bollywood movies- that’s what made it enticing. I wanted to learn it & understand the importance of it. So, i bought this book & started unraveling the power of myth in our lives. Joseph Campbell has studied the bouquet of myths from all around the world & he saw the connections between them. Just like the way we are discovering now and similar to the importance of every event or occasion in the Indian(not specifically Vedic) way of life. He has clarified the role myths play in our life. I was getting wary of all the rituals but after reading this, i have a change in perception.

The book is the conversation between Bil Moyers & Campbell from a PBS series on Myths. Moyers poses his questions to Campbell & then the explanation given by him with Moyers supplementing & complementing his views, gives the book its form. It is divide into eight sections- starting with Myth & the modern world. The journey inwards, first storytellers, sacrifice & bliss, Hero’s adventure, Gift of Goddess, Tales of love & marriage follows with Masks of eternity ending the conversation.

The first section on Modern World impacted most on my current beliefs. The major point i took was that in modern world everything has been made so scientific & easy to do without any hassle that the importance of any occasion has diluted. An individual doesn’t realises when he has entered the next stage. Earlier, it was done through social rituals which are mythological rites. How one child knows that he has become an adult? The other points about conservative religion or attitude calling for old-time and by-doing that they are throwing oneself out of sync with history. Also how there has been increase use of LSDs to experience some mystism which has cropped up due to lack of relevant myths which could have directed them. This section paced me into the book further & had many more connections with contemporary trends & mythology.

Journey inward section had the focal point of finding ones inner self or the soul.The mythologies metaphoric  in a poetic manner not in physical or logical manner.The basic functions of mythology – mystical,cosmological, sociological & pedagogical. This plus the next teo sections had more or less tint of Indian mystic or spritual ideas of myths & rituals. Hero’s adventure was also similar to Kundalini Jagaran of Yogic culture.Campbell showed how the myths & stories have been telling the same stories all around the world.Like the story of essence of life as eating of itself –  Life lives on Life. The hero is the soul again connecting to the unknown-known energy of the existence. Gift of Goddess is underlines how the concept of a superior maternal productive power gave to the male-dominated culture & myth. Love & Marriage and the dichotomies they put a person into is the theme of the next section. ( I lack understanding in this field so probably later i’ll get it). Finally Campbell & Moyers discuss how to connect to this eternal center of the world. Campbell suggests that ‘ Follow your Bliss’ is a way to achieve it in current era.

 I loved how the conversation went & Campbell was putting forth various stories or myths right from African tribes to American Indians to Europeans to Oriental. Campbell has influence of Jung in his explanations whenever subject of unconscious occurs. Campbell being brought up in Christian culture have critiqued the Christian mythology in comparison to myths of other cultures. The idea he put forth of ‘Need for a global myth today which encompasses the planet – is what we are observing now in various movements all around the world. According to him this new myths will be bought about by the artists(don’t limit your idea of artists here – anyone can be a one). There are many more ideas & thoughts i took from this book, it complemented my interest in the Indian mythology & contemporary India. Better to read this book & find out yourself – i think there is something for everyone in it. One suggestion though take it with open mind without any prejudices of your own. I will end this review with few lines from the book:

“Myth is the public dream and the dream is the private myth”

“When the world changes, then the religion has to be transformed”

“Unlike theology, Mythology is poetry & the poetic language is very flexible”

Aarigato.