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Friday, February 15, 2013


1] The tradition-following goody goody next door girl posture of wearing saris, decking up flowers etc by the celebrities is by itself a snobbish activity followed by these people to satisfy the near and dear old relatives on specific occasions or photo shoots. No one becomes a great respecter of either tradition or culture by sporting merely a sari, bindhi and decking up the hair with flowers. In fact the essence of Indian culture is more about conduct and behaviour especially even when no one is watching you; it is more about adopting a scientific outlook and philosophical attitude; it is more about open minded appreciation of anything from any source; as swami Chinmayananda says very clearly ‘The spirit of Advaita is not to keep away from anything, but to keep in tune with everything’; it is more about understanding the basic concepts and esoteric meaning behind everything we observe or follow and then implement them if, and only if, there is a contextual relevance rather than mere outward show of observing rituals or ritualistically following traditions for the sake of it. Traditions and attires have to change according to times, circumstances, convenience etc unless otherwise they have any intrinsic value to the body and /or ,mind and/or spirit or substantially contribute to enhance the value of either of the three or all the three body, mind and spirit.

2] This excessive emphasis and importance given to external aspects of so called tradition or discipline and letting down the vital aspects of discipline expected of a normal human being in all areas of life is what is ruining India and its core values. It is a contagious infection hurting every field of activity though due to lack of space and time I shall refer to some of them to highlight the sorry plight.

3] I know of many, why I can say almost all institutes of classical Carnatic music and Bharathanatyam schools, classes insisting on students to turn up in specific attires to classes and they too follow the discipline but unfortunately none of these institutes tell them to listen to good classical music at home or watch Bharathanatyam dances at home or even insist on them attending such concerts.

4] They should teach them more about voice culture, voice care, voice modulations, sruthi suddham, nuances of ragas, how to enjoy listening to music intelligently, song selection according to time limit, how to make their performance more appealing in any context etc. Surprisingly musically the less knowledgeable and less fussy light music singing folks pay better attention to these aspects rather than their attire.[ In fact recently there was a stupid article about the attire that carnatic artists wear in THE HINDU for which I wrote a rejoinder in my FB page on 6th Jan and today I have also posted it in my blog ]

5] Leave alone this even all these teachers, the so called performing artists, connoisseurs, rasikas of music etc do not know that inside a music hall they are not supposed to talk but only listen.

6] Similarly we bathe, deck up with flowers go to temples but never follow any discipline inside the temple.

7] Even the Gurukals or Archakas, temple administrators who do all the tall talk never bother to maintain cleanliness inside the temple at all and everyone makes so much of noise that in all big temples you cannot even think of peace.

8] In schools in addition to uniforms they insist on specific hair styles for both boys and girls. In what way is it going to help them in their learning or understanding? They should instead concentrate more on what must be stuffed inside or stimulated inside the head in the classroom.

9] I think we are in the 21st century, living in an atmosphere of rather too much of global influences [ I am not saying either it is good or bad] of which the present day children are more aware of, thanks to the TV and Internet than they are about their own grandparents lifestyles or their culture.

10] It would be better if the society, especially the elders chaff off the out dated , external, naive, extrinsic, merely previous generation's approval and appreciation seeking behaviour based on certain aspects of traditions which are either out of context or out of sync with the aspirations of the present generation and which do not inject any intrinsic value to life.

11] Coming to Vidya balan, if she says it always as a matter of habit like you have mentioned people saying dude, like etc it is understandable but she has been found to say this whenever she receives any national award in the company of khans.

12] After these criticisms during the recent zee TV awards she just said thanks.

13] There is nothing wrong if a person says Insha allah,[for people who believe in sound vibrations] in fact the word Allah is a sound with very great vibration like some mantras. The sound 'la', it has been found is used as a lullaby for children in almost most of the cultures across the world, 'Alleluia' is the Christian chant. The word Love too starts with the sound 'la'. Shakthi or Parvathi the symbol of feminine power is referred to as ‘Lashayam’ in Sanskrit. But when she makes an affected use of insha allah she must be given a powerful slap then she will scream at one ‘ende ammei’ in chaste Malayalam.

14] So there is nothing wrong if Vidya Balan always naturally says Insha Allah as Sachin says ‘Wow’ naturally when he appreciates.
15] We Indians by instinct get easily diverted and carried away by the extraneous factors. In text books when we write about SIR.C.V.Raman we give more importance to the fact that he was a teetotaller, when we write about Ramanujan we talk about how he was doing Sandyavandhanam in the shivering cold climate of UK and while talking about Gandhi, he had many excellent and extraordinary qualities, he was always given more credit for his reading religious scriptures and his respect for all religions, if only someone had told him to read a bit of politics he would have selected a better prime minister and the fate of the nation would have been different. Worse still when we discuss Sachin Tendulkar we admire his modest and humble behaviour [in fact appearance] and not his cricketing merits and forget and forgive easily his total lack of contribution or giving back to either the society or at least creating cricketing facilities in villages with his more than one crore per day earning for the past 15 years. Hell with such modesty. Hell with such reverence for religious scriptures. Hell with similarly such shows of following tradition by wearing saris on occasions.

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