I have recently become a fan of a TV series called “What would you do”… only, I didn’t watch it on TV but on Youtube! For those who are not aware of this program, google it up!
The reason I like it is because the scenarios of the “social experiments” (well, most of them, if that) are pretty close to what we might face in reality at any public place. And the reactions from people who unknowingly become part of the scenario are sometimes absolutely heart touching.
Some youngsters in India have also tried such “social experiments” in India and uploaded their recordings to Youtube. Although the videos lack the technology and finesse of the American show, the reactions (or lack of it) from our dear Indians are horrifying. After watching some of the videos, I am unable to decide whether I should be happy that there were a few Indians who had guts to do anything about a situation… or should I be really, really sad that most of our friends are absolutely apathetic to the problems of their fellow citizens in public.
So, here are some ‘common’ scenes that we might come across in our lives.
What would you do if you are taking a stroll on your neighborhood streets, park or a beach and you see a young girl crying and trying to evade an overzealous ‘boyfriend’? Would your reaction be different based on the dress the girl is wearing?
What if you see a woman being hit by her husband in the street in a slum like area? And what would be your reaction if the wife and husband look like well to do people and the hitting incident happens in a restaurant or in a park or at the beach?
What would you do if you small kids swarm you at a traffic signal trying to sell some cartoon or painting books claiming they were hungry? What if it was just a lone, shabby woman, with a kid asleep in her arms, asking for money?
What would you do if you overhear 2 foreigners bashing your religion on a flight?
What would you do if you see school kids no more than 10 years old swearing and cussing like fishermen?
What would you do if someone cuts the queue in front of you?
We all know people might go to any lengths to actually prove a point of their beliefs (including me, I am only human after all)… but one article I came across today seems to the pinnacle of that effort. The gentleman who wrote that article has spent so much time and effort in trying to prove that the sacred hymn of Narayana Suktam is actually meant for Tripurasundari Devi and not Lord Narayana.
The gentleman keeps referring to his “detailed analysis” as to why Narayana in Narayana Suktam cannot refer to Lord Narayana… but the detailed analysis that he refers to is just a jugglery of root words… concluding with the ONLY MEANING of the word Narayana is “That being / entity whose direction is towards nara (purusha)” or “That being / entity whose goal is to move towards nara (and reach him as final destination)”. And boom… out of the blue, the Nara/Purusha is Shiva, the being/entity whose goal is to move towards Nara is Tripurasundari Devi.
Declaring that Bhagavad Gita was not spoken by Lord Krishna (seems like he was in a trance and Lord Shiva spoke through him), that Sita Devi is actually Parvati Devi and Lord Rama is actually Lord Shiva, Srimad Bhagavatam as a fake purana are the crown jewels of this twisty twist effort.
I did not spend too much time on any of the pages in the site (obviously), but it looks to me that people like these keep running their conclusions between Lord Shiva is supreme, or/and Shakti is supreme and then all of a sudden Lord Shiva becomes this formless, nameless, qualityless Parabrahman and Tripurasundari Devi becomes the cliched mystic kundalini in everyone’s body.
I have no problem if someone wants to worship only Lord Shiva, consider him as the Supreme Being, spread the goodness around… may his devotion grow forever and may his life be blessed. But I am clearly annoyed when people keep jumping between personalism and impersonalism like intoxicated monkeys when it comes to professing their devotion to Lord Shiva. In doing that, while thinking they are glorifying his mystic potency and showcasing their own intellectual prowess of understanding 2 irreconcilable positions as the same, they actually insult him in to nothingness.
Edit: I came across a site that rips apart this particular fancy theory of Narayana means Tripurasundari devi. Anyone interested can visit http://narayanastra.blogspot.in/p/the-absurdity-of-shakta-interpretations.html and enjoy the carnage.
கன்றின் குரலும் கன்னித் தமிழும் சொல்லும் வார்த்தை அம்மா அம்மா
கருணை தேடி அலையும் உயிர்கள் உருகும் வார்த்தை அம்மா அம்மா
எந்த மனதில் பாசம் உண்டோ அந்த மனமே அம்மா அம்மா
பூவும் பொன்னும் பொருந்தி வாழும் மழலை கேட்டேன் தந்தானவன்
நாளை உலகில் நீயும் நானும் வாழும் வழிகள் செய்வானவன்
Why doesn’t anyone write songs like these nowadays?
Almost (this being the key word) every damn movie nowadays is about some stupid love story, with some horrible, beaten path sequences, acrobatic fight sequences… can live with all that… but the songs…my god, the songs are murder! Most of them are absolutely crass, filthy and puke worthy.
How many of you actually ‘fall in line’ when you have to? No, really… do you actually make a conscious effort to get in a Q and also ensure that others do the same? This phenomenon has been written to death all over the net, even getting branded as an Indian attitude problem. What a shame!
I absolutely hate it when people jump the line… and more so when they display an attitude of “its beneath me to stand in line”. But the worst of the lot are those who react as if they have heard a ‘asariri’ (disembodied, ethereal) voice when I berate them politely. They look in all directions (as if I was speaking to someone else) and make one more push towards getting further up in the line.
It pains me to see even (modern!) mothers encouraging their kids to “not stand there simply looking and barge in front to get the bill done fast”. I have lost count on the number of occasions when I gently chided kids to get back in line at the local supermarket only to get glared at by the ‘protective’ parent! I have been yelled at by line jumpers who claim ‘I was already at the counter before you… had to go back and get some additional stuff”, and my response was “you might have stood here yesterday or day before… but the line is for today”.
If the people’s attitude (culture, bringing up, whatever) is to be blamed, it also has to be shared by the commercial establishments and the counter in-charges. Lack of common sense rules related to crowd control is the core issue. “Saar, oru item thaane, parava illai”… (Sir, only one item no… its ok)… this is a statement I keep hearing so many times. The number of occasions I have been ‘side stepped’ by a counter employee in favor of another person lunging in with a single item to bill are far too many and every single time I have made it a point to give them as much as an earful possible in 10 seconds.
You don’t have to be as ‘stuck up’ as me… but please… next time, make sure you fall in line and speak up when someone doesn’t do so.
(partially inspired by the video of Mr. Chiranjeevi scolded by a voter at the polling booth for cutting the line.)
Devyani Khobragade Incident– Wikipedia link.
1) The key question is did Ms. Devyani knowingly and willingly make a second agreement signed with her domestic help fixing the salary for Rs. 30K per month only, when the original agreement shown for the visa purpose was based on the minimum wage as per US law – If the second agreement is real and verified, then the US government is fully justified in taking legal action against Ms. Devyani.
2) Was the US Justice Department correct in the way it handled the case? I don’t care. I can hazard a guess that there are too many people that get arrested visa fraud or perjury… Ms. Devyani did not have diplomatic immunity at the time of the arrest, so I don’t see how the arrest was executed to be a problem.
3) This whole noise of diplomatic row drowns another key player in this mess… the domestic help, Ms. Sangeeta Richard. Looks like she just got greedy and wanted to work outside of her stipulated job on off days. And she wanted to get a change of passport, visa to settle in USA. For this it seems like she resorted to harassment, blackmailing or whatever. If this is proven true, then she deserves to be punished by USA law (and Indian law) too. No wonder USA does not have visa free travel for Indians… will never happen, I guess. But I also am wondering how an injuntion and arrest warrant from an Indian court on an Indian citizen, conveyed through the consular channels were ignored by US officials.
Agreed that the USA government is surely not “balanced” in handling such cases with other country consular officials (Russia or Pakistan, as in recent times), or for its own hurried evac of accused personnel from its consular offices on claims of diplomatic immunity… but that is no reason for India to demand that the charges be dropped. In my opinion, the reaction from the Indian government is downright childish… and moving Ms. Devyani to the UN mission post haste is now making it look even more foolish. The most funniest reaction of all came from Mayawati madam, who said “I know I should not bring caste into this but the overall conduct with this girl was inappropriate. The central government reacted late because she was a Dalit”. She just couldn’t resist playing the dalit card.
People like both the “now-diplomat level” Ms. Devyani and the domestic help level Sangeeta (and the idiots who rioted in Singapore) are few examples as to why opinion about Indians is not too great in foreign lands. I have seen too many incidents that reinforce this thought… that we Indians are given a bit too much to a sense of entitlement, ‘above the law’ attitude and not being too concerned about ethics if things can get in their favor or can be hidden from public view, in general.
From an article on NDTV.com about some family raising piglets for food… am not linking here.
“They’re slaughtered locally, at a small abattoir that treats them with respect.”
“We do kill and eat them… but, oh we treated them with respect!”. Hopefully, the piglets thanked these folks for the respect given before joyfully allowing their heads to fall from their necks.
Makes no sense.
I think if someone wants to eat meat, they should do the killing themselves.