Thursday, March 17, 2011

Indian exceptionalism is suspect

[Sri Aurobindo'S Theory of Nationalism Sri Aurobindo was looked upon as a prophet of the Indian nationalism. In association with Bankimchandra, Tilak and Dayanand, he contributed to the t.]

It is impossible today to see India in isolation. And hence the difficulty of formulating any precise notion about it. From Dalits to Diaspora, the diversity is vast and complex. From Software to Soft Power, its influence pervades everywhere. The way the media and entertainment industry is reinventing itself and integrating with Global trends, the distinctive elements of culture are likely to be extinct. This technology-enabled phenomenon can hardly be thwarted.

Thus, increasingly, the assumptions sorrounding India are turning nebulous. As a nation now alert to occupiy its rightful place, the trajectory seems normal. But as an ancient civilization that must leverage its tryst with modernity to be the harbinger of a harmonious life upon the planet, the promise is not secure enough. That is a tall order and why should it at all be saddled with such an onerous responsibility is  a valid objection.

Indians share the same physiological existence with the rest of the species and are not entitled to any anatomical advantage. Neither geography offers any particular edge over the others. Besides India can't boast of any superior social, political, economic, or educational system. Thus, the claim of Indian exceptionalism sounds hollow and becomes suspect. [TNM]

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