It Boils Down to Mindset
Intro: “One must deliver himself with the help of his mind, and not degrade himself. The mind is the friend of the conditioned soul, and his enemy as well.”
— Bhagavad Gita
(Chapter 06, Verse 05)
The Western concept of Modernity assumes that alone material change can transform everything, even your mindset, while Oriental thinking believes that it is the change in mindset which brings the real change. This brings us to the conclusion that, true victory in real sense is the victory over self. Even the festival of Vijayadashami does not signify the victory of good over evil in the external sense but points at getting rid of your internal evils for the real change to happen. In the last few days, at least four important incidences have signified this underlying message of ‘change in mindset’.
The government on October 2 launched “Mission Swachh Bharat” as a flagship programme for next five years. That Prime Minister Narendra Modi had to call for such a scheme itself is unfortunate. It is not that funds and ideation for such schemes were not initiated earlier. “Nirmal Gram Scheme” is the point in case. Still, the launch of this scheme has brought new enthusiasm within and outside the system. This was possible simply because the stress was on participation and changing the mindset rather than boasting the government’s initiative. Infact, the ultimate success of the mission will also be dependent on the initiatives for change in mindset rather than the ritualistic scheme.
India’s success in Hockey while beating the archrival Pakistan is another example of what difference attitude and mindset can make. After losing to the same opponent at the league stage and getting the finals to the nail biting finish, it’s the positive mindset that made all the difference. Other victories and losses in Asian games tell the same story.
There are counter examples as well. Some Indian groups in the US were reported to have approached the UN to welcome and show support to Modi but the officials there denied such permission on the ground that UN can allot space only to register protest. If this is true then the rules of the UN should be modified to register an affirmative action. As ultimately it reflects the post-World War II mindset in which the International Organisations were created. It’s time they change their mindset.
Another shocking example of such rigid mindset is pertaining to the case of Bihar Chief Minister (CM) Jeetan Ram Manjhi. A report that a day after CM Manjhi visited a temple at Madhubani during the recent Assembly bypolls, its “idol” were “washed” was reasoned to happen on account of him being a Mahadalit. We have been denouncing untouchability for many decades- legally it is a crime- still it is prevalent in the society. No caste based identity politics will be able to change this mindset. Unless there is a societal resolve to curb this menace once and for all, mere legal and constitutional menace will not be able to bring the real change. Therefore, RSS Chief Mohan Bhagwat rightly said in his Vijayadashami speech that, “No government or administrative machinery has the powers to remove feeling of discrimination from people's mind. It will end only with the efforts and initiative of society itself.”
Considering the said, if the mindset and attitude is so important then we need a special resolve on this Vijayadashmi to get rid of pessimism and biases and take our society on the path of positive collectivism and constructive change. The change has to start from self, otherwise the waves of prosperity will come and go but the eternal problems of violence, tyranny and intolerance will keep up us haunting. That is why a clarion call by the RSS Sarsanghachalak is to urge us to come forward and contribute towards reconstruction of this great nation and to embrace participatory change.