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Being Judgemental

January 17, 2009

I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.

Qu’est-ce que la tolérance? c’est l’apanage de l’humanité. Nous sommes tous pétris de faiblesses et d’erreurs; pardonnons-nous réciproquement nos sottises, c’est la première loi de la nature.

What is tolerance? It is the consequence of humanity. We are all formed of frailty and error; let us pardon reciprocally each other’s folly — that is the first law of nature. -Voltaire
“Tolerance” (1764)

How did an e-mail ‘received ‘turn into a long post?
It happened thus.
A certain friend(henceforth referred to as B) wrote a rather long e-mail to yours truly asking questions,admonishing , berating …..well,you get the picture.
Because In B‘s words (rather severe one might add)yours truly had been hobnobbing(?) with certain members of the blogging world with err… rather different views and VERY radical ideas.How my ‘Secularism ‘ itself was at stake here. Really???Funny !!And I didn’t even know I was a secularist.

This really puzzled me for quite some time….because it just seems silly that one would join any organization/society/blogworld/group etc etc to interact with EXACTLY one’s mirror image.I fail to see the need to search for more of my own kind.People who think just the way I do,act as I act,believe what I believe,think as I think.Where’s the adventure,the charm ,the mental calculations,the ‘search’ in that?Yes, some points are common in our friends ,acquaintances,blog friends etc but we are not EXACTLY alike are we????

I may meet people who have pre-conceived notions/stereotypes about my country/religion/city etc…but that in no way allows me or gives me the right to judge them.They might be judgemental of me or mine but if I am judgemental too, then of what use is my so called ‘thinking mind’ ?Tell me that!!

We talk of respecting other human beings irrespective of caste/colour/creed/race/religion/political affiliations/beliefs/(insert a word of your choice ) and then WE get offended when someone’s viewpoint differs from our own.Who is a hypocrite here?
The one who picks and chooses and then decides who is worthy of attention/friendship OR someone who has his/her personal beliefs but is also ready to listen to your point of view?????
The ones who seem most dangerous to me are the ones who have a covert opinion of their own.The ‘pseudo-intellectuals’,the ‘pseudo-secularists’,the most dangerous kind these are…
Atleast with someone who openly says that she/he is pro this or anti that ,I know where I stand.But with these people one is always on shaky ground.Secularism I believe in.But not in the kind of secularists who are unsure of where they stand,the ones who hem and haw and dither when the actual test comes.
I can very happily interact with people with whom I share absolutely NO COMMON GROUND/NO COMMON POLITICAL AFFILIATIONS …THANK YOU VERY MUCH!!!That you see is the sheer beauty of living in a democracy.

I respect other people’s opinions and expect them to respect mine.I most respectfully give them my opinion (contrary though it might be)or make them aware of how I feel about certain things,how I do not agree with what they have to say.But beyond that I do not judge it possible that I could convert people right here and right now.On the blogworld no less!!If converting people to my way of thinking was the issue ,then I would have joined a political party.I mean ,why sit here wasting my precious energy and time? Here I am (as all others are surely)just trying to carve out a personal space of my very own.I do expect debates,arguments and completely differing points of view.
I welcome that.I do.
Just please stay within a circle of morality/decency/fairness/equality(ie. treat me as an equal and not a moron just because I don’t agree with you )when you interact with me.That’s it!!.That’s all I expect.

Getting personal shows not just vindictiveness but a complete lack of courage and the inability to convince someone with your ideas or with the power of your words.I do not judge people based on just one viewpoint/opinion or belief.There are so many facets to someone’s personality.How can we judge based on just one?
I know of very prominent bloggers who are so regionalistic in their views that one is not even shocked.One is simply speechless.The ‘manoos’ question for them is just an issue of logistics!!I do not go on their blog and vent my anger.I simply make them aware of where I stand and let it be.

All I have to say ,is that live and let live,be respectful and aware of someone’s feelings.And remember that just because someone doesn’t believe what you believe in, is not a reason to pour out all your angst and frustration on this little computer screen of 19/21/26 inches or so…
I, for one ,cannot tolerate strife and pettiness on my space,on my blog.I simply refuse to be drawn into a debate or act as a referee in a petty match.Therefore,dear Trolls please unsubscribe or look for another ‘trolldom.’…(or whatever wood work it is ,that you pop out from)
If this piece seems rather rambling and incoherent ,pardon me,the moment was such….:)

As Voltaire said
Qui plume a, guerre a.
”To hold a pen is to be at war.”

Just don’t let the war be a bloody one..

I am not a Congress supporter nor a BJP one…And no ,Mayawati and Mulayam won’t do either….I support individuals rather than people….again no,Modi uncle,Sonia Aunty and Rahul baba don’t count either….In India no party is worth it…follow individuals if you can….if you can find the worthy ones first that is…:)

12 Comments leave one →
  1. Sagarone permalink
    January 17, 2009 6:21 am

    I would never die for my beliefs because I might be wrong. – Bertrand Russel

    That is what I have up in my GTalk and that is what I believe in. Shutting off alternative viewpoints is like saying that you and what you stand for at that particular moment in time are perfect and that you wish to rigidly maintain that snapshot of yourself. That amounts to putting an end to personal growth.

  2. Indyeah permalink
    January 17, 2009 6:46 am

    Sagarone:-Yes,thats exactly what I believe in too….:)
    Only ,I don’t want someone to get personal or vindictive if they don’t agree with me.There’s a very fine line between a healthy debate and a personal attack…
    The reason I was ranting in this post was because of one such ‘personal and rather inexcusable words used by someone…
    Glad to know you agree on having a healthy discussion too..:)

  3. Smitha permalink
    January 17, 2009 8:34 am

    Indyeah, Makes me really angry , when people instead of just putting forth their views, feel the need to convert every other person as well… As Sagarone has put it, so well too, ‘Shutting off alternative viewpoints is like saying that you and what you stand for at that particular moment in time are perfect and that you wish to rigidly maintain that snapshot of yourself. That amounts to putting an end to personal growth.’

    I think the best part of a healthy discussion is when you have different viewpoints! After all, what is the point in a discussion , if we all had the same viewpoint 😦

    You go girl! Don’t worry about such stuff – you are doing so great with your lovely posts and your comments!

  4. Ajit permalink
    January 17, 2009 9:13 am

    live and let live….
    beautifully lines…. but I dont know as to how many people live that way….

    I once faced a certain scenario…
    Have you ever heard of the new sect in Christianity called "Charismatic Pentecostal"…
    They are growing by leaps very year back home in Kerala…
    One of my friends Mr VA once, a few years back invited me for a mass in their church.. and when I did attend the same, a few others expressed their strong disaproval….
    That is what many people are..

    I did not do anything else but ask them to F%&* off….. 🙂

    I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it…..
    is another favorite line of mine and I hope that I can live by that……
    ask B to read these comments… or better still… ask him to start blogging 🙂
    as smitha says:
    You go girl……. 🙂 continue the amazing work… and let B be B… 😛

    out of sheer curiosity….
    "Was I in B's list " 🙂 hehehehehe

  5. Usha Pisharody permalink
    January 17, 2009 4:36 pm

    Again, fine articulation of your strongly held and deeply believed in opinions.

    I’d second every word you’ve put down here. The quotes used are absolutely on the dot and very very apt. To move this a level higher from a mere self, to a Nation, I think it’s people quick to judge and label and compartmentalize the people/religions/regions/communities/etc around them that finally make the problem of Intolerance a Menace. And because of that the country suffers.

    So what if I think differently? So what if my beliefs are a contrast to yours? I have always felt that the key to thinking tolerantly is actually accepting another’s point of view [as against agreeing; which you may or may not :)]; and not in spite of but because they think in the manner they do.

    Interestingly, the State Level Inter schools that our school takes part in had the topic “Tolerance – the need of the hour” as the topic for an elocution competition. This is what I had prepared for her to speak, with inputs from her of course.

    What you’ve shared here is so close to all that I have believed too, that it’s actually a comfort to read this 🙂 Thank you!

  6. Indyeah permalink
    January 17, 2009 9:19 pm

    Smitha:-Yes,it does make one angry doesn’t it?As Sagarone has put it so beautifully…
    And yes, I have met very ,very few people who are up for a healthy discussion always…they can shout,they can rant,they almost come to blows..:)they leave personal baggage outside the door,they make me want to strangle them….and after the debate/discussion is over we are back to being friends again…..:)
    this is the fine line that very few can tread…and very few do..:)and I loved how you got all angry like a mamma bear protecting her cubs..:D!Thank you …and thank you for the wishes and compliments…too..:)

    Ajit:-Yes,live and let live is the need of the hour today….
    and F*** off is a GREAT way to tell someone off…!
    No,B is not a blogger,just a reader…:D…
    and let B be B…lol!really good one!:D
    and No!B is not a member of the blog world….:D
    curiosity satisfied?:D

  7. Indyeah permalink
    January 17, 2009 9:23 pm

    Usha Pisharody:-Thank you so much..:)
    and When you write so convincingly and back my views so strongly ,it makes me believe that these are ABSOLUTE beliefs that you live by…:)
    I loved reading that debate…it was so amazing and by a 7th grader..!way to go!:)
    keep believing,keep making the little minds believe too…:)
    (wish They had more teachers like you..:))

  8. hitch writer permalink
    January 17, 2009 11:18 pm

    It takes many years to find friends who are liberal.

    Although lots of people consider themselves liberal when the time comes people suddenly start becoming too expectant of others acting as per them.

    At times it is best to not even put a view in front of such staunch believers. Infact I assume on the blogoshpere you actually try to find like minded and liberal kinds !!!

  9. Vinod_Sharma permalink
    January 18, 2009 5:34 am

    Abhilasha, you have not only a way of putting across your views with a certain luminescence but have been blessed with a wisdom and maturity that comes to some of us, if at all, after many more summers.

    I think this essay of yours should be read by all who want to get into the blogosphere either as writers or as commentators or both. You have reached that desk much faster than I thought you would.
    Those who visit you space will only be enriched.

  10. mesoliloquy permalink
    January 18, 2009 10:05 am

    My thoughts exactly!

    Just started blogging a month back and now while blog hopping I saw a blog which directly linked to another blog where the blogger had a different view and actually mocked at that particular blogger, indirectly inviting him for a debate/fight. Sad!

    If you have a different POV then put forth in your blog and invite a decent discussion with constructive criticism. Why mocking others for putting their POV in their own blog and why picking on other bloggers for having a difference of opinion? May be they will find their match in some discussion forums.

  11. Indyeah permalink
    January 18, 2009 7:10 pm

    Hitchwriter:-Yes,You have put it very concisely .And yes we should just try and avoid these kind of people ,the ones who just seek to disrupt any healthy discussion.
    And even though we do naturally gravitate towards individuals who think more or less the way we do.That is liberal and like minded individuals but we cannot avoid others who might not be like us can we?But yes, avoiding people who cannot think straight or are mere trolls is a good way to go about things.

    Vinod Sir:-Thank you.The thoughts came pouring out because of a very childish and personal attack.I do hope I live up to your words. an that the trolls atleast read this.:)

    Mesoliloquy:-Yes,same here.Its been a very short time since I started blogging.And the vindictiveness has already started.

    Very well put Mesoliloquy,”If you have a different POV then put forth in your blog and invite a decent discussion with constructive criticism.”

    A person who cannot put his/her POV across is the kind of person who gets frustrated and gets vindictive and personal.And yes, I do know what you are talking about.I saw the same blog.pathetic really!one can only feel sorry for the childishness of it all.I too do not agree on so many points with so many people.But to act like this is just petty ,not to say it also shows how much excess time one has on one’s hands to do this senseless work.

  12. January 17, 2020 11:08 pm

    This here young girl is very wise
    She, her POV, does not compromise
    But will hear and read
    With patience, heed
    Other POVs — interestedly — but will not downsize!

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