Friday, January 08, 2010

Clarification about the previous post, 'Hare and The Tortoise'

Following my previous post, a reader asked a few questions about the validity of my argument. While replying I realised that the explanation is too long for a comment. So here it is as a blogpost. All follow up comments can be posted on here or the previous post. So referring to Nukul's argument, it's all a matter of how you look at the matter. One can either take a reductionist, rationalist, pragmatic or an inclusive view. The only way to try and answer your question would be to go deeper still and start from the beginning.

A reductionist will simply say, there is race, there are good and bad guys and there is a carrot at the end. I want the carrot, rest can do as they please. Rationalist will analyse every aspect of the argument and in the end will say, well, each to his own. Pragmatic people will think of this as an unrealistic thing and would say that as long as you get that carrot, nobody really cares how you managed to get it. The one with an inclusive view, however, would say that ok the fact is that there is a race, there are good and bad people, there is carrot and there is the need to attain that illusive state of detachment. How shall I go about it? Firstly, the fact that I am suffering due to this stress of rat race implies my own deeds in the past which brought me here. Now that I am here, there are two things I must do. Identify how to be detached while being a part of this world and master that thing in a way that once you are successful, you can lead by example. Nobody takes a looser seriously. A winner, on the other hand gets accolades even the court of fools.

So if one is intelligent enough to ponder over these complicated concepts of detachment, eternal happiness, etc. then one must consider himself lucky, become a winner in the material sense and while doing all this, still remaining calm, detached, peaceful and have a humble attitude of surrender.

Simply put, the answer to your question is, you can't escape the need to work in this world, then do it in a way that you don't get entangled at least. So that you are a part of the race, but not stressed out like the rest. You can then even concentrate upon enjoying the race itself and learning along the way. It's like Mario...he has to cross levels and collect gems on his way to the final stage after which he is happy. It's the same with us. We are helpless only so long as we resist the flow of destiny, and make the mistake of thinking that the doer and enjoyer is "I"...the moment one realises what the real "I" is, questions simply dissolve. Pragmatists, reductionists and rationalists should try this approach. There is no harm in trying. If one is still not convinced after experiencing this for thmselves, then so be it. All izz well, regardless of the outcome. We change, truth doesn't. Only that which is stable despite changes can be real.


Nukul Chopra said...

Even though I personally support your argument however there is still a scope of ambiguity. As you followed to what I said before that it is difficult not be a part of this race. How important do you think it is to be a winner in material sense just to create an example for others? Let’s say if it is important than are you not equally greedy for that carrot. Regardless of your deeds, you have made yourself part of this race. My notion is not that it is unrealistic; I just can’t digest the fact that one who is after every material success will not commit any sins that a pragmatist might do. Perhaps, I am wrong and it is possible to be a part of this race while not being a part of such group. I hope someday I come across such a man and clear my puzzled thoughts. Until than I can only say is All is Well...

Rohit said...

I agree with you as well, but all I was trying to say is that fair enough be a part of the race, but simply don't be stressed out about it. The problem is, all arguments of this nature are highly complex, involving a lot of factors which influence the outcome and many different stages. For instance in this one, firstly we must argue about the nature of time and life (linear/cyclical), law of causality and it's influence on all activities, the nature of the doer & the deed, the paradox of simultaneous existence and non-existence, establishing the standards to which all arguments must conform with, and so on...Perhaps if justice has to be done to this argument, then it would require several theses.

Since that is not possible, I would simply conclude by saying that because we are here, we are obliged to act. If mess must be cleaned, then you have no option but to get your hands dirty. But, when you do finally manage to clean the mess, there is always a chance that you can clean your dirty hands and purify yourself. Better even is wearing the gloves of right knowledge/understanding which will protect you from getting too dirty anyway.

The only problem is, we all expect someone else to initiate. Why not start ourself?