My connection with the subjects of “health & sickness” started fairly early in my life. In our group of friends who grew up together studying from 5th standard to professional courses, majority of us became engineers & doctors. But the rest became … professors, chartered accountants & auditors, and some others as advocates. Probably I was the only odd one out – who was interested in medical sciences as much, while pursuing engineering and finally qualifying as an “electrical & electronics” engineer. My subsequent employment with GE-USA (working in India) as a marketing engineer for their electromedical equipments, deepened my connection with the medical world of diagnosis, treatment, doctors & hospitals (both rural & urban)….while haunting me for the rest of my life till now, irrespective of my main field of work for a living, in the varied engineering industries. My interest in any & all subjects with some intermittent & accidental incidents, forced me to study alternate medicine, holistic medicine, Indian system of medicine (AYUSH) etc. I think that, this long introduction of my background may help the reader of this article to view it in its own perspective, while evaluating its contents.
Old Joke: Operation successful, But patient died!
Presently emerging & scary reality: Operation successful, So patient died! Read the rest of this entry
What ails India fundamentally? To this simple question, one can expect 1.2 billion answers from the 1.2 billion people of this country – in complex permutations & combinations. Is it rich-poor divide? North-South divide? East west divide? Religious divide? Multiple political parties divide? Linguistic divide? Cultural (Indian – western) divide? Regional divide? Generational divide? Gender divide? Poor governance? Irrational reservations on cast basis? Power in the hands of incompetent?
Well … it could be all and none! One absolute common denominator of all the above is Corruption! Fundamental corruption of Minds – ie- loss of “Ethics & Morals”. But why? What is the reason for our ethical & moral degradation? Spiritually the answer lies in the Karma theory – but philosophically it is in the History! Karma theory is good for knowledge – but history is a good source for solution. So, let us look at history! We have been ruled for centuries by Invading Mughals and Europeans.
They robbed our possessions first. They robbed our confidence later. Finally they robbed us of our “self-esteem”. Material possessions are easy to rebuild with some determination. Confidence can be rebuilt with some collective action & cooperation. But what about self-esteem? That of both individuals and collective population? It appears that we lost it forever (individually & collectively) and never attempted to regain! We have not even recognized the need for it. We beg for importance from the powerful or impose it on the weak – but never attempt to earn it.
Material poverty can be more easily corrected than the mental poverty. Mental prosperity will help us regain material prosperity easily – but not vice versa. We have fairly succeeded in progressively overcoming the material poverty – though not sufficiently as yet. But our mental poverty, which is a more serious issue – has not even been recognized to exist and hence not addressed. The single most important issue to be addressed by both individual Indian citizens and collectively as The Nation (which aspires to become a super power) is to recognize the importance of regaining our lost self-esteem – which is the foundation of ethics & morals. What ails India? Absence of ethics, morals and self-esteem … corruption!
Historically – that is since the Vedic periods – India had been a very large group of monarchies, ranging in size from very small to very large, such as the size of a present small village of population of 500 to the size of an Empire with a population of 10 million or more … in those days. The ruling kings were benevolent dictators – highly educated in and self-governed by Dharma (Ethics). The rules of succession were laid down so clearly, that there were hardly any conflicts on that account. Competence to deliver good and impartial justice internally and ability to ward off threats externally were considered most important characteristics needed for a monarch – in the process of selection and election.
While the kings enjoyed the privilege and prerogative of nominating their successors while still functioning as kings – it was not automatic for confirmation. The ministers had the right to question the choice and selection of the king – about the track record of the nominee prince or the heir-apparent. Only after due deliberations on the choice of the successor, the new prince was confirmed for the crowning ceremony. The popularity of the king’s nominee with the common people of the kingdom was also a major factor in determining the suitability of the heir-apparent prior to the confirmation as the crown prince. Even a small blemish in following the ethics or morals by the individual will permanently disqualify him for future kinghood. He was to function as de facto king (king in probation) – under the supervision of the actual king – for fairly long time to prove his mettle before getting the final confirmation as the king by the governing council of ministers. The retired king was never powerless; he held the veto power to disqualify the newly crowned king – if he becomes unpopular later by virtue of his conduct and bad governance. There was no incentive to indulge in corruption, while there were all rewards for good governance. Read the rest of this entry
Education and Qualification are two completely different aspects of human society – and should not be mixed-up or confused for one another. You will find many qualified but uneducated people – and much educated but unqualified people – world over.
Qualification is essentially a certification by an authority – which means that the certificate issuing authorities vouch for your knowledge & competence. We have seen all over the world that such system has miserably failed to ensure quality – a certificate is no guarantee for competence.
A certificate is only (just represents) what others can think you are – not necessarily what you actually are! But I am not decrying or devaluing this process / system altogether – as it is generally equipped to filter, grade and tag people to some extent quite accurately. Read the rest of this entry