Tit for tat- Whether an amenable solution?? – My thoughts…

(Please note that in this blogpost I am elucidating my views on the more customary or generic meaning of tit for tat. Along the lines of an eye for an eye; and not the tit for tat strategy or I’ll scratch your back and you scratch mine corporate regimen.)
So a very good friend of mine put forward this seemingly toothless question where a simple ‘yes or no’ would have sufficed his inquisition. Frankly, if I were to answer that question, which I unfortunately immediately, spontaneously and thoughtlessly did; I would and did say a yes. Obviously, being who I am, I am surely be ready for the ‘eye for an eye’ treatment. So I thought that’s the end of that. Question answered. Chapter closed.
But then, after almost three hours, the fathomage of the question struck me! I mean, is tit for tat really the solution? For our day- to- day petty mishaps it seems like the perfect quick fix. I mean, someone pokes you and you poke back. Someone slaps and you snap back. Someone cuts you while driving, you throw cuss words, have a bit of verbal jousting, cut him and well, that’s over. But then, probably, for our mundane circadian matters, tit for tat really isn’t that. Its more of a mere retort than a blatant rebuttal. Its more of a repartee than offensive comebacks. However, if this is true and acceptable on an individual level, can the same be said about it on a communal level? So say America wrongs India in a certain way, should we pay them back in kind? Or should we try to chalk out conversations and esoteric discussions so that we find a way out. Obviously, now the choice shall be the latter as the stakes are higher. Thus we see that as the provincial parties as well as the magnitude of the situations change, the contrivance resorted to also undergoes a revision.
For me, tit for tat becomes an issue of the kind of riposte it is. I mean, the problem with it is that principally, it should never be used as an offensive or an avenging response. Vengeance should never translate into any action. However, if it has been used in defense, then we may be able to justify it. I know all this sounds ludicrous, but those who give it a thought shall realize that there is a paper- thin line of demarcation between the two, even if the aftermath of the two shall be pretty much the same. Obviously, many would say that war is abominable in the first place, whether you initiate it or respond. True. But the intent after all is what separates earth from sky! Oft, giving back what you get remains the only possible alternative, which should then definitely be put to practice; but it should also be remembered that it is an avenue of last resort and not a resource of first employment.
People should surely use an iota of discretion before actually giving back what they get. It is inopportune that we are living in an era where patience, tolerance and one- to- one discussions are becoming gold-dust. Obviously, people will want to reimburse the apostates in the same cruel ways that they were paid, but I believe that a resolving dialogue should be indulged into before actually turning the tables. Thus, if now someone asks me to answer the question, “Tit for tat- Whether an amenable solution?” I would say, “No. An intractable solution which should be used on advisedly amenable occasions!”
Hoping that people do use their heads before their hands.
This is the Sciolist.
Signing Out!!!


What is common between Jay LenoSalman Rushdie and Jeremy Clarkson??? Amongst the other obvious things (like being aged celebrated figures), all of them have been asked to officially apologize to Indian public in the country and all over the globe!! And that too for infinitesimally small reasons which quite frankly should have been ignored. Our government has long been resorting to swords where a blindfold should have been used. One more example of the same would be the ‘official’ people driving out M. F. Hussain saab.                                                                   


I think it would do us well at this stage to ask ourselves, the common people, are we really offended by some juvenile comments? Also, do we need to be offended by (with no disrespect to the artists) essentially a stand up comedian who sells his soul for drawing a laugh or writer who is putting down his views?  If I were to answer that question, I would respond with a belligerent and unyielding ‘No‘. Unfortunately, to get that kind of an absolute answer from 1.2 billion Indians is an irrealizable and an insurmontable task. More so because of the subjective nature of the question. Not to mention the various theological sinuousness it involves! But whichever way the answer goes, I believe its absurd for the Indian government to get involved in all these matters. I mean, the issue is not concerning the Indian state in anyway. Its not encroaching upon India as a republic, secular or a democratic state, nor is it judicially or legally deleterious in anyway. Agreed that for some it has a religious mordancy involved, but it should strictly not be handled by the government.

History has long displayed that sadly, whenever there is a question of religion involved, there are always accelerated and juiced up emotions gushing around. See, we have three areas of concern here. For the people who answer the above inquests with a positive, there is a deep need of a catharsis. People need to be more liberal. We need to broaden our mindsets. India is the largest democratic state in the world. We really need to banish such conservative proclivities. And if even liberals feel that their religious sentiments have been offended, and if they wish an apology from the delinquent, then they must come up with a different channel, someone other than the government. Firstly, as I have fore- mentioned, the government has no business in this predicament. Secondly, if the aggrieved are demanding an apology, I expect, that they expect the offenders to be remorseful. Whether pressurizing them into an apology using the heavy hand of the Indian bureaucrats is going to serve the cause, is questionable. Obviously, such an apology is no testament to the contrition of a guilty mind; actually, its much the opposite. The offender is under duress and the now self- reproach is a meaningless attempt to save face. Instead, it would be more eloquent if recourse is taken to premier religious bodies. This would ensure that both a chivalrous as well as staunch demand for indemnification is made.
The second area of concern would be the death threats that these so called wrong- doers have to bear. The extremists actually go to the length of threatening these exemplars and driving them out of the country. Just today Times of India ran an front- page article on the atrocities that Taslima Nasrin had to face. Its the same that M. F. Hussain saab or Salman Rushdie had to face! I understand and sympathize with the people who are religiously agonized! But then, which religion preaches harm to human life? Aren’t the people who give these death threats in the name of protecting or reacting to an attack on their religion themselves making a mockery of their own sacrosancts and praxises? The afflicted should demand apologies from these ill- hearted fascists!
Thirdly and lastly, I would like to reiterate that we need to be liberal about these religious issues.  Its reproachful that we cannot tolerate petty comments on our beliefs! What is a belief in absence of tolerance? Accepted, that one of the core fundamentals of a secular existence lies in religious tolerance. But remember, both religion and tolerance have equal weight-age in the same. We need to be more tolerant about all these issues. And more importantly, we need to channel our energies towards more significant and urgent issues on hand! If people really want to fight against something, there are millinery other issues, for which the GOI has to apologize to the Hindustani janta. Kasab has still not been convicted, crime against children, women and old is still on the rise, farmers are still committing suicide, girl child is still banished, the common man has no faith in the safety and the security measures taken by the defense system. The list goes on and on. Why don’t we demand an apology from the politicians and the Indian Government? Definitely these issues hurt us more than some firangi comment or some novel! The taxpayer’s money is at stake here. So are his safety and sentiments. Why do we show apathy in issues where we need to raise a voice? Mumbai bounces back after bomb- blasts. Bullcrap. We bear this almost every year. Why so? Why aren’t these issues  taken up by the same fervent politicians and individuals who otherwise demand an apology from these artists? Indifference. Apathy. Stoicism. Not the spirit of Mumbai. Not India shining. That is the hard truth. I feel, thus, that there is a need of an expurgation. We need to direct our staunch beliefs in the right direction. The Satanic Versus The Lenonic do not afflict our lives as much as these demonic debaucheries. After all, it is a question of our  faith, solitude and existence.
Demanding an apology for all this lassitude.
This is The Sciolist.
Signing Out!!!

Does God exist? – My shot at the answer.

Well, most of the readers would reply, “Obviously He does, stupid” and leave it there. Some would attribute adjectives like unnecessary, irrelevant, nonsensical, heterodox to the question, call it names and leave it there. Some would feel that it is a germane question, one that deserves a thought, but still leave it there!! But frankly, how many people have actually given it a thought?
From nascency, most of the children grow up believing in the existence of ‘The Supernatural Being’. Never once questioning His existence. Never having second thoughts about it. The reasons for this behavior are simple enough. People who generally do question, are admonished, told off, heavily advised to mend their anomalous ways by their grandmums and sometimes down right banished. Secondly, when the entire tree gives you oranges, can you expect a branch to give you apples? Thirdly, and most likely of them all is that people just do not want to get into an uncomfortable position where they have to answer a millenary more questions.

Nevertheless, frankly I  do believe that asking the question and more importantly, answering it is imperative. To answer that however, one has to ask another fundamental question. WHAT OR WHO IS GOD? An immediate answer would be, ‘the one Supreme Being, the creator and ruler of the universe’. Probably the above image, if it is ever possible to do that, best defines Him. The Supporter, The Shelter, The Genesis to Growth. But do people even begin to fathom what that means and above that, implies! Out of a myriad of other things, it implies that there was ONE Being at the start. So, which one was it? Deva? Allah? Jesus Christ? Obviously, believers of different religions shall have their own deity at the genesis of the genesis. People shall also say that Almighty is One, and these are mere names given by humans following divergent, yet, to a certain extent, over- lapping religions. I do not in anyway intend to inaugurate any religious spat, but the question that now arises is, WHY GIVE DIFFERENT NAMES TO THE SAME ENTITY? Why have different customs, different principles in accordance with the religions? Probably someone shall argue saying that if we can have different languages, why can’t we have different names? But then that’s being myopic. The greater picture here is the disparity between the multitude of traditions and sacraments that the world follows.
Without getting into any kind of canonical debate, I would like to present my perception of God. For me, God is synonymous to HUMAN FAITH OR HUMAN TRUST. We humans are emotionally weak beings. We fear the unknown like we fear the future, sorrow and death. We are in perennial need of inward backing and support. And God is that support. People have faith in God. In His justice. In His compassion. In His empathy. In His unwavering love. They pray to Him to alleviate all their sufferings and lead them towards the path of happiness, peace and contentment. They trust that God will grant their wishes. They try to live an ideal life. Follow principles. They have faith that God will do no wrong to an honest man. Is this not true, I ask? And if you believe, WHO ARE YOU TO SAY ANY DIFFERENT?
But then, the idea of God; does it not seem to be the congregation of all the good, all the bona fide, all the morals in the world? Is it not the concomittance of all the virtues which have been metamorphosed into folklore and holy conventions? And frankly, very frankly, are they needed? Is it necessary to follow some religion? To have faith in the unseen? Is it not possible for humans to be good, honest, ethical, chaste and virtuous of their own accord? Can’t the trappings of the rituals be done away with? I am of the stern opinion that humans are unequivocally capable of adopting all the above attributes without resorting to the cloud of a religion. After all, faith in one’s family, one’s comrades, one’s fellows akin to faith in the Almighty. Truly, the world is just the aggregation of the behavior of all the people that inhabit it. If we do hold to our values, then is the IDEA needed?
I believe, that it is us, humans, who created the concept of God, and not the other way around!!! We took all the love, all the care, all the happiness, all the contentment, all the niceties, all the good that the world has to offer and transformed it into an idea- an idea so vast, so magnanimous, so all- conquering, that few would question its validity. We created a Being that is perfect, all- knowing, over- powering, and quite frankly, supreme to all us mortals. We gave Him characteristics which are ideal, which not just circumvent the blacks and whites on the chess board, but actually rule the play, and which I can candidly say, we felt, we lacked. And is this so hard to believe? If humans exercise the ability to create entire religions, sects, customs, traditions and the commensurate, is it so difficult to believe that WE ourselves have created the idea of God? After all, if everyone does agree that Almighty is one, then surely, the names, the rituals, the praxises are all a figment of human imagination which, due to the widespread dissipation, has grown into an all- encompassing tree! Because, the One God would have suggested only one path of living, probably constituting all the above- mentioned moralities and more. We were the ones, however, who institutionalized these into sacrosanct precincts.
Now, above all, one question remains, belittling all others, demanding an answer from all of US. Can we vanquish our fears; can we put faith in OUR ABILITIES and ascend to higher grounds – without aid from the invisible? And I think the time has now arrived that we give this question a thought. We need to be captains of our souls now. We need to tread our path of living by being apprentices of our own minds. As God maybe NOBODY, but surely, God is US ALL.
Hoping I have given all of you some question to ponder upon. And further that I have not offended any of your sentiments.
This is the Sciolist, offering a thought.
Signing Out!!!

A sparkle in the eye – Rahul Dravid’s speech at the National War Memorial

So The Bradman Oration 2011 was orated by Rahul Sharad Dravid. That he is the first non- Australian to deliver his speech on such a prestigious occasion speaks volumes about the man- THE WALL, himself. It may be noted that it was not Sunil Gavaskar or Kapil Dev or Sachin Tendulkar who delivered the speech. Probably they may do it in the coming few years. But as we as a nation revere and sometimes even worship our firsts, this is one first that surely we all should be proud of.

Jammy, as he is fondly known to his team-mates, was a bit jittery, finding himself on foreign land, just like he is at the genesis of any of his batting innings; in the first ten minutes he shuffled from one foot to another, like he does with his back and across movement when he comes in. But as he settled in, he was at his fluent best, laying stroke after stroke, caressing the audience with the mere expanse of topics that he covered, just like his vast repertoire of shots.

Over a better part of the hour, Rahul enthralled the audience at the National War Memorial and all over with not only the matter included, but also the earnestness and the chivalry with which the speech was delivered. I personally feel that cricket cannot have a better ambassador, for Dravid embodies the fundamentals that the game possesses and thrives on! A gentleman to the core, he took us from the appositeness between India and Australia, from the times of the British rule to the youngest progeny of cricket – the T20, in a way that few other would have been able to achieve. He drove home his views on betting, issues faced by various formats of the game and also the colored vision with which the world watches Indian Cricket Board, and to a certain extent, India as a whole. No one, I believe, could help but agree that India really is a the prime picture of unity in diversity.

What was touching to watch was the honesty in his speech. Even as he cracked a few jokes, mostly self- depreciative, what we saw was that he felt shy at the audience’ reaction. He felt out of place maybe, but he stood the ground as he, more often than not, does. It also gave a slight but definitive insight of Rahul Dravid- the common man. An intelligent, down- to- earth and a congenial man, who is a body of dedication to his profession. A calmness surrounded him, which gave our consciousness a deep feeling of steadfastness, meticulousness and the well – rooted care and love that he shares for the game. It showed that he truly is a student and a servant of the game, wanting it to grow, flourish further than its already dissipated roots!! He reminded us though, time and again, that the occasion is cricket, not him, not the next match, not the nations, but the game as  a whole, which we Indians follow almost as our religion, as our kin.

Even though he has not been a celebrated figure for a better part of his 15 year career Dravid has come to the fore in the recent past with his exquisite display of batsmenship. He has always been the anchor to the rocking Indian ship and has performed par excellance on unhindered and unconquered turfs. However so, his career can be a tunnel lamp for not only budding cricketers, but also anyone who is willing to take the cue and translate his cricket career to a macro picture; the paths of life. He exemplifies hard work, persistence, sacrifice, decency, modesty, unpretentiousness and above all unwavering dedication to his field. Principles that spell SUCCESS and CONTENTMENT as well. Talent is a virtue of the few and most of us have to gruel in our everyday life to get through. In such times, this oration comes as a twinkle in the sky on a hazy, cloudy night. Probably the answer lies in who he is. Probably being a servant of the game is better than being the master.
Till next time and hoping all do take the cue.

In river deep veneration for Rahul Sharad Dravid.

This is the Sciolist.

Signing Out!!!

The snags of a Corporate Setup ! ! !

Being recently introduced to the whole CORPORATE STRUCTURE, some would think it’s a little too early to comment on the snags of the whole constitution. But the mercy little that I have come to know, and if I may take the liberty to say, understand, about the establishment is that it is nothing more than a farce. A bunch of ‘well-suited well booted’ idiots try to run a show which quite frankly has got no watchers, except themselves.  
After getting over the awe of the whole grandeur of the decor and the setup of this particular establishment, what struck me was that the organization in its entirety was hollow. A lot of ideas exchanged and  promises made, but no one seemed to be bothered to give even an iota of damn after getting out of their favorite BOARD ROOM!! Frankly, the Board Room is a joke. The projector, an obvious component, is something that the bigwigs need so that they understand what exactly people are talking about. To put it on record, I have nothing against this particular technology. Its a wonderful aid, but people seem to forget just that. Its only a aid – not the subject. Also the favorite tagline, if I may say so, is “WE SHALL GET BACK TO YOU.” Mother of God. Really. Out of the 20 points discussed you are gonna get back to me on 17. The rest 3 you feel don’t serve the purpose of the job. That’s really wonderful!!! Arrogance rides high on their pitiful noses!
On the first impulse, one may even be tempted to believe that wait..people actually work their say-nots out here. A couple of stress- busters and a family photo mounted as if the same are distant relatives makes one feel that the employees don’t really go home. But after the repeated get back to you responses and the fun mail-games that one needs to play (gosh, they need a mail for everything – and I mean EVERYTHING), anyone shall beg to differ!! What you may see as a regular and a popular prop is the BlackBerry device which they flaunt when one asks for a meet. Like a television channel, you have to book slots for a meeting. And from what i gather, they need a ‘Meeting Invite’ to say a simple Good Morning!!
Its really poor that they have to live like this. Like metal backed soldiers. Its a pity really. Because, after everything, they are just running a daily gig of zilch. Probably all of them just need a catharsis!! May be that shall work.
Of course all this is limited to just the one entity with whom I had the misfortune to interact. And frankly, I would be more than happy if someone told me that I came across the ‘reserved minority’ in the the whole corporate matrix. Because a lot of respect for the big shots has just been sorrily flushed down the drain. Hoping that the cliche of ‘There is always the flip side’ stands. This time for good.
Till you send me the next meeting invite. I stand.
This is the Sciolist.
Signing Out!!!