pachai maamalai pol mene

Friday, September 24, 2010

my country over everything else

Regarding my post of yesterday regarding the Interest of the country taking precedence over virtue of sin for the ruler, a view was taken by a  very learned person that the quote from Ramayanam was adhoc and only applied to the limited episode of Sri Rama slaying the demoness Taadaka, I have to submit that the quote was not at all ad-hoc but an always accepted principle in politics among nations.When we are a nation together, we have to put the interest of the nation above everything else.  Here there is no room for hesitation as to whether our loyalty and our action will border on adharma.  Lest I may be accused of fascist tendencies, I submit below my humble views on the matter.

dear friends,  as a keen student of political science, I do not find any inconsistency or deviation from dharma in protecting ones own country and its interests by fair means or foul.  An individual may be very meticulous and sincere about dharma and run his own life on dotted lines prescribed.  But when the destiny of a large chunk of humans and other living beings are under one's protection, the first priority  irrespective of the propriety of the action is to do everthing to protect the subjects or the  citizens.  Political systems have run from tribal ages to the modern democratic age, but every organised ruling systm was established with the paramount purpose of protecting the unity and integrity of the polity. Be it Krishna, be it Chanakya, be it Machiavelli  or for that matter any political thinker, there was absolutely no dispute over this issue.  The tadaka episode can be taken as only an opportunity where such idea has been illustrated..
Take the case of any ancient or modern political system.   The institutions and pressure groups or welfare groups can wax eloquent about truth, ahimsa and hundred and one other virtues when the country's general state of affairs is fairly bright.  But in every system there were always emergency clauses and hidden agenda where the usual flow of dharma were suspended and unpopular and adhaarmic(if one should call it so) controls and deeds were resorted to. Some may call it aapad dharma.. But there can be a picture only when there is a canvas. No one has any right to compromise the interests of his nation or even any group dependent on him in the name of the so called Dharma.  Just like Adharma, Dharma also can be poisonous in fanatic hands.  There are many occasions in our saastras where it is clearly said that when one is facing the loss of life of himself, his family or friends or he is facing a situation when he will lose all that he has earned, he may resort to speaking lies or doing things which are not exactly in the line of the usual dharma. So when there is challenge to the country itself, anything can be justified for its protection.  It is for this reason that even in a liberal democracy like India, treason is visited with capital punishment sometimes even without trial.The exalted self interest was always the priority of any national set up.

In fact, the slaying of Thadaka may not fit in well for this issue. Maybe thadaka is a demoness and was causing havoc to the inhabitants of the forests including rishis etc., and the rishis are credited with powers of annihilation of evil elements. Therefore the question remains intriguing as to why a boy should be used to try his first arrow on a woman.. in fact she could have been eliminated through many other means.
Righteous indignation against adharma is understandable but such thoughts would never carry conviction when the unity and integrity of the nation is concerns.  History is replete with examples of fall of great personalities like Bhishma and Drona ...upto some modern revered martyrs,  who placed the individual dharma above the interests of the nation/
It is true that in the hands of tyrants the self interest may be camouflaged as interest of the nation and unpopular actions may be perpetrated. Nationalism or anxiety for the unity and integrity of the nation cannot be equated with this attitude.

Then what is dharma is politics?  A scientist of a country simply smuggles scientific secrets from another country where he is working and has been given facilities in good faith.  It is an act of treason in the eyes of the host country but it is an act of ultimate heroism in the opinion of his motherland. 
Was it dharma for Hanuman to encroach upon a beautiful neighbouring country and burn it and destroy it, when the issue involved was very personal, a very strong man stole the wife of another strong man and they were trying to settle scores by whatever means they could resort to.  Was it dharma for Vibheeshana to abandon his brother who had protected him for long  years and join the enemy.  It was only a case of political ambitions, but most people have no qualms about extolling the bhakthi of this man.
Therefore I simply refuse to purchase the idea that the statement in Ramayana was an adhoc fatwa relatable to the justifying of killing an old lady by a young man.  I cannot agree with the attempts of many  over ages to whitewash certain ideas and actions when the facts available on record will give a different picture for a man of even average intelligence. 
Ultimately there is no interpreter for dharmas.. Dharmasy tattwam nihatam guhaayaam.
And on the practical side even a rudimentary study of politics will prove that no isms were successful even in breaking the national boundaries for sufficiently long periods.
।श्रीकृष्णो रक्षतु।
|śrīkṛṣṇo rakṣatu|
Have a nice and happy day
with profound respect and warm regards
K V Ananthanarayanan
त्यजन्तु बान्धवाः सर्वे निन्दन्तु गुरवो जनाःI
तदापि परमानन्दो गोविन्दो मम जीवनंII
let all my relatives abandon me, let the great people insult me, still I am in supreme bliss since my life  is GOVINDA alone.
Iकृष्णात् परं किमपि तत्वं अहं न जाने"I
लोकाः समस्ताः सुखिनो भवन्तु।
lokāḥ samastāḥ sukhino bhavantu|


  1. the blog makes a big statement in these lines -Was it dharma for Hanuman to encroach upon a beautiful neighbouring country and burn it and destroy it ...
    Who are we to judge dharma for Sri Hanuman? But if we have to, wasnt sri hanumna bound by his dharma to sugreev, who had given his word of help to Sri Ram? Wasnt He bound by his divine devotion to Sri Ram? To pass judgement in such matters is foolish in my opinion.
    Jai Sri ram

  2. Anonymous6:48 AM

    I have not in anyway tried to take either side in this matter. If one is to take Rama an Hanuman as only dvinity and that Ramayana has nothing but the Religious value one can go on justifying anything. But as the aadhikaavya Ramayana has influenced history and morality and also social law of a large populace. From the viewpoint of a political student, and respecter of the universal brotherhood, one cannot justify attacks on the sovereignity of another nation. But again realpolitik is different. Enlightened self interest governed the pact between sugriva and rama and for them that may be convenient and justified. There is no value judgment here. A non conventional view was expressed. Was it right for anyone to attack the freedom of opinion of someone in a democracy as foolish?