Sunday, 15 January 2012

Modern Vikram Betal story

Swami Nikhilaananda said:
"Remember, if you know the answer and refrain from answering, your head will explode to a thousand pieces - said the Betal to Vikramaditya"

I am sure most of you are familiar with the Vikram Betal stories... And today, I heard a very interesting story that apparently happened in India. So, here's the short narrative, followed by the standard question... And remember, if you know the correct answer, and refrain from saying it, your head will explode to a thousand pieces (Betal's threat)
A traffic constable pulls a car over for jumping the signal. The driver of the car tells the constable in a way of warning, "Do you know who is in the car? It's the big boss" and tells him who the big boss is - Joint secretary or one such hot shot chief... The constable says "It doesn't matter who is in the car. I am just doing my job!" and asks for a fine to be paid.
 The joint secretary subsequently contacted the superior of the of the constable and (hold your breath) asks for the constable's name so as to present a cash reward to him for diligence.
I am sure you are all in awe - considering this is a really rare occurrence in the corruption ridden country.

And now for the Betal's question - "Who is the greater of the two? Was it the constable who, in spite of knowing who was in the car, continued to stick to his principles while ordinarily the reaction would be a quick salute and letting the car go away... or was it the joint secretary for not being audacious and egoistic and instead, recognising the effort and principles of the constable and even rewarding him?

Remember, if you know the answer and refrain from answering, your head will explode to a thousand pieces

*** Answers from Modern Vikramadityas to the Modern Betal ***


== Comments from Facebook ==


Hemanth Pai: 
Constable is greater ...

Srivathsan Lakshmipuram: 
Haha, I'll go with the constable too

Abhishek Kodankiry:
Certainly the constable is greater.!!


Sunil Bhat:
Lo betala, according to me, the act of the Joint Secretary is more praiseworthy.

The constable was doing his dharma and in our religion, honesty is an integral part of everyones job (karma). However, the Joint sec. went out of his way to recommend an award to the constable for refraining himself of doing a wrong act by letting the driver go. Afterall, the joint sec. had a choice to just go away without bothering , or use influence to cause harm to that constable or reward him for his work. He chose the noble option

Aditya Padaki:
Well, I'm digressing here...

Its a sad state of affairs that we need to deem people as 'great' if they stick to the bare minimum honesty... Neither of them are great... Constable was doing his job and the JS was adhering to the law - its indeed very sad that the day has come where we see these basic things as 'great' :P :(

PS: It was just 'nice' on the part of JS to get him an award, but its again ridiculous to get a constable award for doing his job!! :P :)

Of course, if the constable did something which was very brave or valorous like Omble, then its different :P :)

Sunil Bhat:
Adi, as expressed by you at the end, the JS did something nice, and so, was greater than the constable!

Tuesday, 3 January 2012

My wish, my will

Swami Gulagulaananda said:
"My wish my will, maybe I will jump off the hill...;
Or maybe another time, I can already feel the chill"

Raj looked at me and said "You know what I want to do? I want to run naked in the sunflower fields". I raised an eyebrow as I looked at him and grinned. "You what? But why?" Raj stared at me without any expressions "Because I can...."

"Okkk... But why sunflower fields?" I asked. This was getting rather curious. "Why not" he asked. I said, "Dude, why don't you run in the city streets? Like one of those marathons for a cause that's often held? Someone might capture videos, organise fund raisers, maybe you will go viral and you can actually help people through charity. Not to forget, you will become famous - you would have done what Poonam Pandey only bluffed about"... Raj seemed to be seriously considering it. "What you say sounds true, but hey, I can't run naked on the streets. People will throw stones at me." Just as he was completing those lines, his girl friend Ria walked in.

"Who would throw stones at you honey?" she asked inquiringly. Raj narrated the conversation to her. "Why would anyone throw stones at you? It is your wish, your will. It is a free country and you should be allowed to do whatever you want" she said, "You want to run babe, you run". My cheeks were beginning to hurt owing to the constant grin I had, listening to a rather bizarre conversation. "Yeah, but people will raise objections to it, no? This will be considered as public nuisance, if he does what he wants to do" I replied, trying to get some sense into the conversation.

"Public nuisance my arse. If they don't want to see and get offended, let them close their eyes. Speaking of my arse, if I was running naked on the roads, I will bet loads of guys would be drooling and fighting to see a naked chick on the road. I mean come on, even when we are fully clothed, we are not spared. To top it, we have those punks coming along and telling us to be dignified in our clothing. Who are they to tell us what to wear and what not to. My wish, my will, I will wear what I want."

"And I will not wear when I want" said Raj puffing his chest, glowing at the fact that his girl friend sounded so cool when she was vehement. He adored her guts. "That's right, your wish, your will" said Ria, and continued "And besides, we live in a free country. And what's with that ban on beef in Madhya Pradesh? I mean, if people want to eat beef, let them eat, and people want to not eat, they will not eat. You know, prerogative" said Ria and Raj pulled out his cellphone to check the meaning of the last word. I was sure she didn't know the meaning either, though she had used it in a nice place.

Satisfying himself with the meaning, Raj said with a drawl "Yeah, it looks like we are going back in time. These people are being way too right winged man. Our thinking should be more modern, more liberal, more open. Our thinking should not be closed like the eye patches those horses are made to wear. Poor things can't see beyond that - no wonder they are drawing carts. If you want to be like a lion, say no to eye patches." Ria giggled as Raj gave a light roar and mauled in the air.

"Alright, let us assume that you are right. If we think along those lines, don't you think the entire law system itself becomes obsolete?" I said, ignoring them. "Say what?" said Raj. "Think about it. What I am trying to say is, if the whole world starts saying 'My Wish, My Will', then it is impossible to come up with any law that will satisfy everyone. There may be a certain number of things that I may want, that you may not like and vice versa..." Ria narrowed her eyes trying to decipher what I was trying to get at when Raj said "Oh, I know where you are going. This is about your support to the police having pubs closed off early while your arch nemesis Times Of India lodges protests against it. And also your strong objection to Slut Walks while some people say that is ok...?" I stared at him trying to figure out if he was deliberately mocking me or if he was really making a point.

Raj was expressionless again, and so I continued "Well, not this time. Let us take the proselytising of the Christian missionaries by inducing people with money, do you think that is agreeable?" Raj kept quiet, and looked at Ria, who looked at me defiantly as she didn't share my views about quite a few things and said "Dude, why not? If they are able to improve their standards of living, why not? And besides, it is not like violence is being used. Their wish - if they want to take the money and convert, it's up to them." Raj nodded, but said "I don't know, that would also have to mean that prostitution has to be legalised, right? Since prostitutes have the will to do what they want, I am guessing they should be allowed to do what they want"  Ria retorted, assuming a feminist stance "Bull. Prostitution is not just sex, it seeks to objectify a woman, degrading her to the role of a lust satisfier"

"Now now, look at it objectively Ria" Raj tried to mollify his doll as I smiled looking at the bead of sweat forming on his creased forehead. "Alright, how about cash for votes? It is the same as evangelism, no? Since both parties are going to be satisfied, the parties get their votes, the people get money and politicians are eventually going to recover the money anyway. At least this way, the money will be circulated. In fact, we should have an auction where politicians can start bidding how much money they will give each guy who votes for them. It is a win win situation. We all know it is happening, why not legalise that as well." asked Raj. Ria was staring at the mosaic flooring, wondering how to word her next retort.

"The beauty is", I said, finding a few seconds of awkward silence between the love birds too much to bear, "everyone will have his or her own opinions. We cannot afford to formulate laws to satisfy everyone, because that can never be done. We cannot, as a result of this conundrum, go to the other extreme of removing all laws, because that will take us back to the jungle where might is right, and bring the state to, well, a state of anarchy. True, even now, might is right continues to be the rule on which most things are done. But that would mean that we are legalising everything, thereby removing the necessity of legalities. Going by Ria's my wish my will, I think it will be safe to say it is my wish and will to hire a group of thugs to get you to vacate your house so that I can enjoy the beach side view" I said grinning at Ria as she darted dirty looks at me. If only looks could kill.

"But then, what's the solution?" asked Raj as he began to realise the repercussions of my words. "I don't know, boss. You tell me. My belief is that we need to learn to be civil. If you know your actions are going to hurt someone, don't do it. I for one, am happy that beef is banned. Of course, you may not agree, but cows are sacred in my religion. Someone asked me - what have the chickens done wrong? Frankly, nothing. But then, unfortunately for the chickens, no religious sect or political party (of any wing for that matter, ironically for the bird) seems to want to fight for the cause of the chicken. Or even the fish.

"We need to stop this duplicity in thoughts. The beef ban in MP might be entirely political. But it does bring about a lot of questions - which law is ok and which is not? And who decides them? Lokpal, for instance is supported and opposed by a lot of people. We are supposed to have chosen wise men to rule us, for they represent us. And when they do something (or don't) we have to fight again, through the media and social networking sites. We elect them, and then we oppose them. It is a circle, I feel" Ria looked at me and said "We know all that, why don't you tell me what the damn solution is?" Raj nodded in agreement and said, "Yeah, go ahead and tell us Swami. Or should we just sit around moping that there are no solutions and resign to our fate?"

I said "Let me ask my friends for some opinions before I open my big fat mouth...."

(Note: This conversation didn't really happen. It's only a way to bring about different sides of an argument)

***
Comments from Facebook

Hemanth Pai: Nik , i just want to prolong the post and cover it from a different angle than the dress code , beef and lokpal debates coz it involves the my wish , my will thing and no laws etc.
Its said , " A civilization is defined by its limitations than its permissiveness " ... So they evolve based on a fine mix of the above ingredients. If you notice , roman peril was due to excessive permissiveness while that of the egyptians was excessive limitations . If the mix goes haywire ... Then the existing order will flounder like a headless chicken and ultimately will be replaced by another civilization which may be altogether another entity which will run along till it violates the above law . This is what history has shown us right from time of mahabharata and that is precisely why there is no enduring civilizations ... Else archaelogists would be jobless :D

Coming to your question , we will continue to proceed with our mindless childish games , philosophies and amusements alongside time with no clue to what the hell we are upto until we are specks of dust and some other civilization would be studying our limitations and follies .

Btw "Relationships are like friction - a necessary evil " .. Is this original quote :) . I quite liked it ... Set me thinking for some time :D