The whole world is screaming and racing towards the ultimate cosmopolitan cum global cum robotic civilization and closer home, we are dreaming the “big Indian dream” to unleash the development giant amongst us and induct ourselves into the elite club of “first world” countries!

And while we continue to debate the right measure of development and prosperity and struggle to derive meanings from GDP and inflows and ratings and purchasing parity, can we spare a thought to the society that we live in and our evolution (which itself is a controversial term)?

The potpourri of differences is our cultural identity on this planet… the mélange of sights from valleys to beaches to gorges.. the intoxicating mixture of sandalwood and roses and aromatic flavours of biriyani and pani puris… the reverberations of vedic chants and sufi music… the comfort of cotton kurtas blending with the grandiose Kanchipuram silk sarees… there is a whole new sensory experience of differences to explore as we traverse through India! And the world travelers come to this country in search of this incredible and almost incredulous unison of differences!

And today we are trying to “cleanse” these very differences and are at loggerheads with each other… we are erupting into sad debates of “you vs me” and “I am right and you have to be wrong”! We have practiced peaceful co-existence for years…. where ‘respect for the other’ co-existed with  ‘enjoying the differences’.. where we could fathom the thought that “you and me could be right”.. where we did not need to strip and trace every experience, art form and opinion to religion, region and ethnicity.. where we truly enjoyed our childhood dancing to Garba tunes and digging into Iftar feasts.. where we did not need to know a person’s origins & “category” to strike a conversation or indulge in a relationship…

And in our evolution, we have slowly and steadily rid ourselves of this very freedom of differences… we are contracting and cocooning ourselves into minute shells built on various identities… we are letting go of the millions of experiences that await us on the other side of the invisible fences that we create for ourselves…. inclusivity and tolerance never had a scarier existence than today!

Instead, can we not celebrate the differences that co-exist in society… can we not join the party with the “other” after leaving our ego, mistrust and  judgement at home… can we not simply savour an artistic experience without judging the artist’s background… can we not dispassionately read and hear varied views before we jump into conclusions…it can’t be a tall order for an individual whose life itself began with the fusion of a man and woman.. a difference that creates humanity… and reared in an Indian family which itself is a miniature civilization of differences?

6 Comments
  1. Pramod 5 years ago

    Well written.. but the question is how to change the mindset, when every one is aiming for his/her own gains?

  2. Haridasan 5 years ago

    Very pertinent article. Thanks. Today when the say “live and let live” stands void, this article is a welcome one. Good thoughts. Hope “the difference that creates humanity” prevails!

  3. Gayathri 5 years ago

    Speaking of digging into iftar biryaani can’t help not to remember the days when I happily ate the biryaani without the pieces and thought it was vegetarian enough(was just in my 3rd year of college ;). Wish I could go back to those wonderful days of innocence.

  4. Retnakaran 5 years ago

    Wonderful note. Thanks..

  5. Peter 5 years ago

    Yesterday was good and feel proud of it.. Today we escape in to the “shell”, not bothered about “other”. Let’s break this shell, for a better tomorrow…
    Thanks,

  6. Devi 5 years ago

    Thanks all… yes i think it needs to come from within to shed our bias and more importantly raise children in an environment of tolerance

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