Tuesday, August 16, 2022
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Vishwaguru India- Fantasy or Reality? 

By MR LALU

Amid the clutter and clamour on India being judged as a multicultural entity with diversity bubbling every inch of its landscape, a huge section of its populace feels that there is a religious (in)tolerance for which India is often appreciated or criticised. As a country India professes and feels proud – in many ways, about its cultural ancestry, that if not all, a great amount of political interceptions accept and silently validate and often put an emphasis on.  But tremors on the bedlam that a  controversial media debate ignited followed by the blatant brutality in Udaipur can indeed be felt, though not profound but still capable to shake the very idea that the Indian wisdom represents – a collaborative upbringing irrespective of its irrational interpretations. What comes as an unfounded allegation is that not only politically but also culturally, India at present is under the captivity of a majoritarian mindset. Parties across the country began to feel the heat of an indelible imprint of a globally recognised era since 2014 which goes rampant against all that it identifies as a blockage in its path of a majoritarian success. Though it is yet to be established, windmills producing perceptions and narratives in this direction are active and this is what we need to put for analysis.

The present government dispensation at the centre under Prime Minister Modi is often heard propagating the idea of India being hoisted to the realm of a Vishwaguru, which most of his opponents call an unrealistic and unreasonable elucidation on the Indian state. The complexity that India’s multiculturalism offers is genuinely visible and the essence of its spiritual wisdom seems to be fading but slowly, without being able to bring a convincing flavour to the platter of India’s religious concomitance. Seeing India as a world teacher amidst the modern tumult of a universal disorder was first conceived by Swami Vivekananda; who, throughout his deliberations in India and abroad had spoken about the potentiality that India held in terms of delivering a spiritual solace. The reasons he frequently highlighted were spiritual, scientific and the effect of the Vedic semantics which were propounded since a period unknown to the common minds. Undeniably, the government since 2014 in India was all afoot transforming the very idea of Vivekananda into its politically modified version of global leadership. Has the idea propagated by the folk got a meaningful depth? To look at it from the cultural perspective of India, we need to say yes. But the political incongruity that we devised since independence tells us a grisly tale of insensitivity with which we polluted the enormity of India’s cultural essence, downsizing it into a mere political subject. What seems to be the most alarmingly deep-seated argument is that the Viswaguru India will be an India of ethnicities striving to conquer the world intellectually and economically with its spiritual principles eventually disseminated in various forms.

Contradicting the above view, the reality that India exudes at present does not give us a glimmer of hope. This is because the polity that has predominantly been carried away by divisive tendencies fail to muster up courage or lack tenacity to question the audacity of politics that redefined the all-encompassing values that India was once a lighthouse of. Sanatana Dharma – that is what the cultural essence of India is literally termed as, never sent feelers of hatred even when swords of invasion pierced its throat. This was the eloquence of its cultural beauty, acceptance of all views without undermining any. Seeing the globe as a family, with prayers pouring in from the hermitages of wisdom for the welfare of the global community, Bharat (to be precise) from its days of antiquity has been fulfilling the role of a global teacher. Nobody, not even the beliefs emanated across the globe could successfully articulate an idea that India proposed – to absorb the world as a family irrespective of the prevalent differences. This was the reason why India hesitated to invade any land militarily. While it sent emissaries for cultural exchange across continents and maintained trade relations with most of the land available on the planet for long, never did the idea of invading a space occurred to it. But the humongous challenge that the Indian nation is presented with is the self contradicting principles that the arrogance of Semitic beliefs brought into its social precincts and the unrest that the concomitance is troubled with.

The right leaning government of India in principle has confused its people on what it means by saying the chiselling of a Vishwaguru out of India with the potential furore of discontent that it carries in its underbelly. India has so far been known for its cultural eminence and natural diversities that its landscape is blessed with. But to a modern world, beleaguered by the blemish of bloodshed of wars and their intercontinental implications, India’s role to heal and bring about solace by assuming the role of a global teacher with values seems to be a delusion. Surrounded by inimical neighbours and susceptible to its internal conflicts, India’s stature as an emerging global guru would be like a bird waiting with its clipped wings before its potential takeoff.  Unable to come out of the differences that the interventions of invasions caused, India at present is inching towards a more complicated social dynamics. Brushing it aside as hallucinatory will be catastrophic. In order to take a plunge in the direction of becoming the Viswaguru, India needs to rediscover its values of yore once again, remodelling and restructuring them for humanity.

India’s pitch as a global player in a modern geo-political scenario needs to be seen as a push in the direction of a dream being fulfilled. Except its unfriendly neighbours it could successfully spread its wings everywhere and the acceptance and the global respect that it managed to garner tells us the gist of its real potential. Being an important stakeholder in an international system and a contributor for world peace; nothing, except the internal complications of India would pull it back from becoming a world leader. India’s evolution as the Vishwaguru will remain an archaic idea as long as it is a nation with a large number of people staying under illiteracy, malnutrition, social backwardness and communal conflicts.  This would remain a reality not so feeble and frail and get noticed internationally. India will still remain an important player globally with the largest population (projected to be) but the disorder that it seems to have failed to settle in its landscape would always be a hindrance. A political desire to transform India as a world leader is achievable only if it can afford to uplift its people from poverty, social inequality and many more maladies that it wriggles in. This new narrative by the Modi government should gain currency, not at an emotional sphere but practically articulating it to the ground, starting a course correction from home. India’s ancient spiritual wisdom should act as a lubricant in this process but never should it be seen as a weapon to divide and rule.  

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