By Pratik Mantri:
The prime time shows in electronic media are full of debates, arguments in which the anchor and his guests squabble about a particular issue. While I completely subscribe to the view that there is a need to exchange ideas, opinions, thoughts etc. but we should not eulogize our own view to great heights but instead should remain flexible. Also what purpose does it serve? It saps all your energy, gets you exhausted and still we have this fascination for stamping our views on anyone and everyone. I mean why waste time, breath and mental peace if the outcome is not really worth it.
A few years ago I witnessed the modus operandi of thieves at a busy street. The people were pushing each other to move ahead from both the sides and as an elderly lady was looking at them with disgust written all over her face; a person came up and escaped with the bag of that lady. The idea was to irritate and distract a person with a minor matter while the bigger theft took place rather easily. A lesson from that incident can be to train our selves to ignore the minor irritants and stay on toes for the bigger problems.
It makes sense to save our efforts for the bigger efforts in life rather than to toil for the seemingly insignificant stuff. That prolonged bargaining with a vegetable vendor does not yield anything especially if you end up exhausted and that too with just a paltry saving. When an exchange of views, opinions get into the territory of ‘ego’ and becomes a war it’s best to walk away. Even in life it is better to bow rather than fight and risk a friendship or a bonding going sour. In the long run, who cares who won that argument or fight? There is a point at which you simply cannot convince the world and beyond that why waste time and energy?
There are people around us who are control freaks and try to or rather dictate terms to us. It does not matter if you just stop arguing against the controlling ploy and let those people believe that you are doing as they desire, while clearly following your own way. At some point or the other the message is bound to reach. But if you are clear about what you want and what you are fighting really for then that’s time to go all out for. The straight forward and into-your-face talks remain productive only if there is clarity of thoughts.
Delving deeper into this topic, it is very interesting to note that we have (I mean a section of people), over the years lost the art of listening and with that sort of a characteristic, the sparks are sure to fly in a debate or in a public discourse. The nature and behaviour of the public at large has become increasingly outspoken, assertive and many times aggressive as well especially in urban India. This would lead to varied and perhaps thoughtful views but will also reduce the impact of the camaraderie, respect and reverence which were prevalent in the pre-internet age.