In a hot, draught prone and a border region of Banaskantha where life is not an easy going story, everyone is blessed with a clear and sharp thinking process and a broad view of life and world which develops gradually from the encounters of brutality and harshness of life which the world labels as philosophy. Only a few decades ago when the life here was dependent on agricultural produce only and when there were no signs of industrial development or infrastructural progress, it was the tendency of the people here to sit together and discuss the grave issues of humanity, morality, society, nationalism and even international issues like war etc. .
Valibhai is a son of this burning soil and he has inherited the philosophical bent of mind to interpret various problems that life offers in his own, distinctive and exclusive way. Adding up in his vast experiences of life is his similarly vast reading of literature, sociology, psychology and economics. In this collection of essays, the reader will find the accumulated source of knowledge and wisdom. Actually the essays or the expositions are written in a newer form of literature which is “Online Blog Writing”. In his colloquial and lucid language, Valibhai offers us a unique blend of subjects touching delicately a local, a national or an international event or topic. His range is exhaustive and the treatment is of a neutral essayist. The readers will definitely be amused to see the author’s sense of humor which makes his essays and articles worth reading and genuine pieces of literature. Moreover, Valibhai runs an Online Blog named “William’s Tales” which is multi-lingual and receives the hundreds of comments from his wide circle of readers.
In his first essay “Over Sensitiveness”, he takes this weakness of human nature as a topic and delineates his deepest thoughts with touches of humor and quotes from the world renowned authors. He begins this essay with a brief story “The death of a Government clerk” by Anton Chekhov. At the end of the essay, he proves that over sensitiveness is the toughest obstacle in the way of uplifting the self. In his next article which is in a series named ‘Art of Balanced Exaggeration in Conversation’, he humorously takes us to a tour of some events of his life and simply states that a little exaggeration in the conversation is not dangerous but the alert listener would definitely discount it to reach the truth. He quotes from a proverb,” Exaggeration is to paint a snake and add legs.”
Valibhai takes such topics into consideration that the title of it surely lures the reader to have a taste of it. In his next essay titled, ”No scarcity of Jacks of all” he beautifully and humorously describes the habits of some people who try to be a grocer with just a single ginger. He invents new phrases in English from his mother tongue like “1.5 times wiser’ and in a Hamletian fashion he writes “To laugh and not to laugh”,” to be and not to be angry”
In his one more series of articles which he titled as “Seldom such posts” he takes upon a popular debatable topic and takes the reader deep within the topic with his new found dimensions and innovative interpretations. His mind is such a fertile land that it grows newer and newer ideas. One such idea is “Shoe missiles”. In his article on “The sense of humor”, he Quotes then Prime Minister of Britain, Winston Churchill. I restrict myself to quote that conversation as the readers would love to find it out and read for themselves.
Some of his articles are absolutely research based and make the sensitive reader brood over it. The book is full of events, characters, humor, witty remarks, well known quotations and one can find the talent of a genuine essay writer on every page. Besides it, it has some beautiful translations of some wonderful poems and lastly an interview which the readers would find as a vacation bonus.
I quote from the translation of the poem “A Flute Vendor”
“Four annas only!
Buy and revel,
Day and night,
In heavenly melody!”
Four annas each?
Sell for an anna.
“No sir , no.”
“Will return to my village
Though they remain unsold.”
“This is no firewood stock.”
I hope that the collection will be appreciated by readers from all over the world as it is to be published in an E-book version. I wish that soon we have another collection of its kind, as Valibhai‘s fertile mind will grow more and more finer ideas to write articles upon. All the Best.
Some years ago, I had read in some Gujarati News Paper the news that an International Conference on ‘Attitudes of Parents towards Childhood Disciplinary Behaviors’ was held at Istanbul (Turkey). One of the participants in debate had suggested that the children should not be physically punished but instead of that the pillows should be thrashed with fists or sticks in fit of anger. My Readers will smile gently as I also do, but there is a portion of little bit truth in the suggestion. It is a middle way between expressing anger and protecting child-respect. Remedy is interesting, but foolish also. The naughty child will show its teeth with smile when we hit to the pillow as punishment.
My pondering over above suggestion inspires me to modify it in a way that instead of punishing the pillow in lieu of the child, we should hit the pillow to the child provided it should be soft to avoid any injury. Parents will be satisfied and the child will think that it has been punished. Thus, the pillow will work as a non-violent weapon like Mahatma Gandhi’s practice of ‘Satyagraha’, a non-violent weapon. Shouldn’t Educational Institutions also provide pillows to the teachers for punishment to the pupils along with educational equipments? There is no need of any special provision for parents as the pillows are always available at their hand-reach in their households.
Though pillow-hurling is a light, safe, non-violent and effective punishment, we cannot deny the fact that there is a tender hardness and disguise bitter feeling of hatred in it. Psychologists of education and parenthood will not approve this method and thus there remains only one option of ‘Forgive and forget’. In Sanskrit, there is a slogan as “Forgiveness is the ornament of the brave.” But, such tendency is not possible for a common man and therefore they may implement direct or indirect pillow-hitting or pillow-hurling punishment to the children.
Now, my mobile thinking enters the world of corrupt politicians and dishonest bureaucrats spread over world-wide in little or more proportion. I see no any difference among innocent playful children, those politics-playing politicians and termite (white ants)-like Government servants boring holes within country’s economic progress. They also do some blunders (Passive violence) like misappropriation of money, mismanagement in administrative system and hundreds of non-ethical practices repeatedly like those children. But, we should not put any blame upon them as they themselves are not responsible as persons for their unfair acts. All blames should go to their chairs; and if we wish to punish them, we should break the legs of their chairs instead of their own legs. Their chairs are the root causes of their intoxicated state of power.
While proceeding further, I recall my memory of having read some Articles on ‘Co-ordination of Science and Philosophy’. In light of scientific definition, the pillows and chairs are inanimate objects; but children and politicians as well as bureaucrats are sentient humans. Parents and public should be careful to honor the feelings of both children and band of those poor rogues. They should be given indirect punishments as thrashing pillows or breaking chairs. Here, like self-proved geometrical theorem, if we have to give any priority for punishment, we should prefer first inanimate rather than sentient.
At this juncture, one more sub-question arises. While giving preference between inanimate and sentient, if we find both inanimate, what should we do then? In case of a politician or bureaucrat and the chair, it is obvious that chair is inanimate; but suppose that if the politician or bureaucrat is also inanimate, then what to do! In my opinion, the answer of the question is quite straight. We should judge who is more inanimate whether the chair or its user and we should punish accordingly. In botanical science, the plant of cotton and a tree are considered as sentient as long as they are live. But, as soon as they get dry, they become inanimate. Logical argument will be as a sentient will turn into an inanimate when it loses its life or sensation. Those cheats, by adopting the skin and tears of a crocodile, have lost their sensation and therefore they are liable to be punished directly.
For honest governance of a nation, the top-level cleanliness is necessary. Gandhiji’s one of the movements was cleanliness in streets as the part of hygienic care of people. A nation can be economically healthy only when its politics is clean. Just to remove political pollution in our country of India, the provision of Clause 49-0 of Election Rules must be made effective with some amendments. The voter must have the right of ‘No vote to any candidate’ in case of not a single candidate is found deserving. For this very purpose, the Election Commission should provide an extra box for ‘No Vote’ in Ballot Paper. It is very interesting to know that if number of ‘No Vote’ is higher than number of winning candidate, the Election of the respective constituency will be null and void. Further, in Re-polling situation, none of the former candidates can be participant for the second time. Thus, all Political Parties also can be taught a good lesson for issuing tickets to only deserving persons for candidateship to contest elections. Thus, the honest State and Central Governments would be able to clean up the Bureaucratic, Corporate and all types of civic dirt by making the Anti Corruption Bureau more active and Judiciary system quick.
Summing up, I have pleasure to announce that I have started a new series of Articles titled as – ‘Seldom’ such Posts. Above is the very first post of its kind; and, I’ll publish such in future, not regularly but seldom as and when my mood hits me.
A line in response to my endeavor of putting my thoughts in this post will highly be appreciated.