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Do you agree with Mr Narayanmurthy on Brahminical Thinking being the problem???

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Hi,
Here is an interview from our Software Czar Mr Narayanamurthy.
http://specials.rediff.com/money/2009/apr/24slde8-narayana-murthy-interview-part-2.htm
He squarely blames the Brahminical System for execution ills of this country! I am eager to know if you agree. If yes pls post your views on the website & get the message around.Any way my response as posted in the website is below.

Regards
Ananthapadmanabhan

My response posted in the website:

When you combine a compelling urge to sound intellectual & esoteric ; with qualified ignorance on matters & then top it up with this urge to comment on any area irrespective of gyan, this is what we get! Another Maculayan!
This is election time & Mr NRN wants to sound politically correct by referring to the Brahminical system & caste problems being the reason for poor execution!!! What kind of feeble & dishonest analysis is this? The problem with our media & society in general is this. When someone reaches the pinnacle of achievement in his or her respective field, they somehow start believing that they can & must offer an opinion on every thing. Admittedly he is a software king & there matters should end.
While referring to poor execution by various agencies Mr NRN offers this “enlightening” piece of analysis reg Brahminical thought being the root cause!! Apparently he & some others made 108 suggestions & nothing was implemented. Fair enough , but how does he therefore jump to the conclusion that Brahmin domination & the caste system are the root cause. Totally absurd & illogical!!! Where is the correlation to say such things? Instead of pulling up the political system & bureaucracy for poor execution, he takes the easy route of Brahmin bashing. To do the former explicitly, would need a lot of guts, after all his business is at stake. Does he mean that departments & agencies in charge of execution at various levels in the government & bureaucracy are full of Brahmins & that they follow this bizarre theory that he has propounded.!!!! From where did he come up this new concept that Brahminical system does not want to do anything that has a relationship with the real world!!! Is that how they created the software behemoth that Infosys now is (Isn’t it a real company ?). Aren’t their real achievements meant for the real world or are they imaginary? Is that how India became a major software power, globally. He has confused execution to physical activity & therefore all the consequent distorted thoughts! Infact it is this system which emphatically asks everyone to do their duty , irrespective of the outcome. Something we should be proud of.
He also says that “The Brahminical system said my job is to think of the higher worlds”.. (Implying that they kind of idle!!) . He is completely wrong. The caste system simply takes into account the real factor that people are born different & hence have different abilities (intellectual & physical) . Isn’t that how recruitment into a company happens- including Infosys-??? This stems from either an “incorrect” understanding of the caste system or an “eagerness” to sound politically correct.
Yes articulation could be mistaken for accomplishment, but that is largely true in most societies & countries, nothing exclusive to India . Take the case of US Presidential elections right form the prudential primaries to the major debates between presidential candidates. It is all about articulation & people vote based on how credible the articulation is, accomplishment comes later (hopefully).
Leaders must be extremely careful about what they say & must NOT say things they don’t fully understand simply because it sounds great , politically that is. May be he has some plans up his sleeve , who knows !!!!
 

suvarchas

Active member
Hi,
Here is an interview from our Software Czar Mr Narayanamurthy.
http://specials.rediff.com/money/2009/apr/24slde8-narayana-murthy-interview-part-2.htm
He squarely blames the Brahminical System for execution ills of this country! I am eager to know if you agree. If yes pls post your views on the website & get the message around.Any way my response as posted in the website is below.

Regards
Ananthapadmanabhan

My response posted in the website:
When you combine a compelling urge to sound intellectual & esoteric ; with qualified ignorance on matters & then top it up with this urge to comment on any area irrespective of gyan, this is what we get! Another Maculayan!
This is election time & Mr NRN wants to sound politically correct by referring to the Brahminical system & caste problems being the reason for poor execution!!! What kind of feeble & dishonest analysis is this? The problem with our media & society in general is this. When someone reaches the pinnacle of achievement in his or her respective field, they somehow start believing that they can & must offer an opinion on every thing. Admittedly he is a software king & there matters should end.
While referring to poor execution by various agencies Mr NRN offers this “enlightening” piece of analysis reg Brahminical thought being the root cause!! Apparently he & some others made 108 suggestions & nothing was implemented. Fair enough , but how does he therefore jump to the conclusion that Brahmin domination & the caste system are the root cause. Totally absurd & illogical!!! Where is the correlation to say such things? Instead of pulling up the political system & bureaucracy for poor execution, he takes the easy route of Brahmin bashing. To do the former explicitly, would need a lot of guts, after all his business is at stake. Does he mean that departments & agencies in charge of execution at various levels in the government & bureaucracy are full of Brahmins & that they follow this bizarre theory that he has propounded.!!!! From where did he come up this new concept that Brahminical system does not want to do anything that has a relationship with the real world!!! Is that how they created the software behemoth that Infosys now is (Isn’t it a real company ?). Aren’t their real achievements meant for the real world or are they imaginary? Is that how India became a major software power, globally. He has confused execution to physical activity & therefore all the consequent distorted thoughts! Infact it is this system which emphatically asks everyone to do their duty , irrespective of the outcome. Something we should be proud of.
He also says that “The Brahminical system said my job is to think of the higher worlds”.. (Implying that they kind of idle!!) . He is completely wrong. The caste system simply takes into account the real factor that people are born different & hence have different abilities (intellectual & physical) . Isn’t that how recruitment into a company happens- including Infosys-??? This stems from either an “incorrect” understanding of the caste system or an “eagerness” to sound politically correct.
Yes articulation could be mistaken for accomplishment, but that is largely true in most societies & countries, nothing exclusive to India . Take the case of US Presidential elections right form the prudential primaries to the major debates between presidential candidates. It is all about articulation & people vote based on how credible the articulation is, accomplishment comes later (hopefully).
Leaders must be extremely careful about what they say & must NOT say things they don’t fully understand simply because it sounds great , politically that is. May be he has some plans up his sleeve , who knows !!!!
Dear Sir,
I agree with you wholeheartedly.NRN as well as many others after reaching a pinnacle of glory in their fields think they can pronounce opinion on everything under the sun.This is akin to our tamil magazines getting opinion from film stars on union budget.

We hindus are accused of inaction due to the philosophy propounded by our religion,but again we have so many achievments in various fields which they fail to notice.Our discarding research in the field of science for inventing was due to the fact that our forefathers were averse to material comforts.
 

KRS

Well-known member
Dear Sri krisanantha Ji,

I have thought about Sri Narayanamurthy's statements for a few days now. My first reaction after reading his statement was one of anger. How dare a Brahmin would dare to criticize his own for this problem, he says that exists in this country?, was my first reaction. My next thought was, 'does the problem even exist?'. I had to sort out both thoughts to arrive at this post.

First, let me ask whether the problem as described by him exist? Because if it does not, his whole thesis falls apart and along with it his accusation of the Brahmins. In my opinion, the problem does exist. There seems to be a general 'no pride in my work' syndrome in India. One time while sitting in a a/c first class train compartmernt in Chennai Central, I noticed the shoddy workmanship(crooked accessories, missing nuts, etc.) and dirt in general. I assumed it must have been an old compartment. To my astonishment, my fellow passenger who worked for the railways said that it was a three month old compartment! You see the same quality of workmanship in most of the public buses, new home finishes etc. Unless someone is on them (I had a first hand experience on this while I was posted to India about a decade ago), it seems to me a large part of our workforce has no interest in doing a great job (no pride). This also shows up in the prevelance of corruption. A person who looks at his/her job as a source of honor and pride would be much less corruptible. So, we can safely say that Sri NM's assertion about this part is correct. (By the way, this is a cultural problem, not a political performance one).

Then we need to ask how this situation came about? Is his assertion that it is because of caste correct? Because our castes promoted division of labor and unfortunately have become hierarchical in terms of social status accorded to these castes (till recently in history), one should accept this thesis - I do not see any other reason for this loudly obvious disdain and dminished status for certain professions.

So, once you accept this, one has to ask the next question - are the Brahimns the culprits. To understand this question, one has to ask the following questions: 1) Were the Brahmins responsible for the cuture today that obviously does not respect the pride in all jobs/skills? 2) If not who is responsible?

The first question can be answered by caregorically stating, yes we are responsible for a large part, because we were the teachers of ALL the skills in the society and a Brahmin was supposed to be well versed in all trades/art in the society. We were the custodians of culture in the society.

Having said that, I think all the castes were equally reponsible for this situation (this is what happens when a profession is made a birth right, without outside competition).

So, I agree with Sri NM's thesis. But I do not agree that the Brahmins ARE responsible for this state of affairs (I think we are unwittng victims as well in this). I wish he had parsed his opinion a bit more detailed.

I do not think he has said what he said out of any political reason - I think he is generally voicing a concern about our culture, which is widely held. I have heard it from many a people before and more importantlty I have personally witnessed it.

Regards,
KRS
 

KRS

Well-known member
Dear Sri suvarchas sir,

I don't personally know him, but from I what I know of him, the following are true:

1. He is a citizen of India, who loves India (he is a Brahmin also)

2. He has co founded and created an enterprise, which is a proud Indian company, widely admired for it's culture of ethics. Under his leadership the company has had tremendous growth with the accompanying growth in employment

3. He is chairing/participating in many a governmental/private committees. Who could forget his role in the Airport Commission of B'lore where he was not playing any PC at all.

Given all this, who do you think is more qualified than him to comment on the culture of India's work life and the reasons for it. I can understand if you do not agree with his views, but I do not understand why you would think he is not qualified to comment on this topic. Can you explain?

Regards,
KRS

Dear Sir,
I agree with you wholeheartedly.NRN as well as many others after reaching a pinnacle of glory in their fields think they can pronounce opinion on everything under the sun.This is akin to our tamil magazines getting opinion from film stars on union budget.

We hindus are accused of inaction due to the philosophy propounded by our religion,but again we have so many achievments in various fields which they fail to notice.Our discarding research in the field of science for inventing was due to the fact that our forefathers were averse to material comforts.
 

Nacchinarkiniyan

Well-known member
I only wish someone would ask Narayana Murthy questions about the software industry in India.

1. How come even with millions of software developers India is yet to produce a single software of international quality? The Russians have done it. They have produced ABBYY Fine reader the finest OCR software in the world. Kaspersky is also from Eastern Europe. Why are Indians doing only coding for others and not doing any original work?

Tally is the only software that Indians have developed.

2. When companies like Goggle and others recruit people from all back grounds even rocket scientists why do Indians (especially Infosys) believe that only engineers can develop software? Why do they judge people only by academic qualifications and the marks obtained in University examinations?

How much of innovation have any of the Indian software companies shown?

How come even the leading banks in India are dependent on software from other countries?

3. When compared to software developers from other countries, how come very few Indians are involved in Open Source Development? Or for that matter any voluntary work on the internet?
 

KRS

Well-known member
Dear Sri Nacchinarkiniyan Ji,

I am in the s/w services industry. Have worked in India as a MD for my company a decade ago. So with that perspective, let me try to answer your questions (all very valid). My answers are in 'blue'.

I only wish someone would ask Narayana Murthy questions about the software industry in India.

1. How come even with millions of software developers India is yet to produce a single software of international quality? The Russians have done it. They have produced ABBYY Fine reader the finest OCR software in the world. Kaspersky is also from Eastern Europe. Why are Indians doing only coding for others and not doing any original work?
There is now 'original' s/w produced by Indians in India (Please look up the risk managed financial s/w, s/w apps for manufacturing etc., coming out of B'lore and elsewhere). I can make a search if you want and list them. I think in the USA, Indians have been contributing much original work in AI and other s/w disciplines for a while. The technology is at a stage now, making 'individual inventions' as opposed to 'group inventions' is becoming that much harder.

Tally is the only software that Indians have developed.
I don't know whether this is a correct statement.

2. When companies like Goggle and others recruit people from all back grounds even rocket scientists why do Indians (especially Infosys) believe that only engineers can develop software? Why do they judge people only by academic qualifications and the marks obtained in University examinations?
This is the difference between a company (Google) whose business is developing s/w based on neural heuristics and advanced math. On the business side they need fresh perspectives and minds (my nephew works for them)

Infosys is in s/w services business. This business involves taking over a client's apps and systems s/w to manage them (development and support). So, this not a research oriented business. I myself found not recruiting from tier 1 schools such as IIT etc., because the work is not that challenging for those folks.

There was a time about 10, 15 years ago there were not that many quality engineers to recruit from. So I recruited the 'best' in associated fields, with good math aptitude and trained them. But today people with exact backgrounds are available through the Unis. So the companies can save of the need to train. There are now so many of them, there must be a way to pre select, hence the University grades.

How much of innovation have any of the Indian software companies shown?
As I have said above, companies involved in services (as the Indian companies started due to Yr 2000 issue), are limited in showing innovation, because of the business model in that segment.

How come even the leading banks in India are dependent on software from other countries?
s/w product business requires up front capital. I think you will see this part of the business accelerate in India (with the associated Indian authorship) in the near future.

3. When compared to software developers from other countries, how come very few Indians are involved in Open Source Development? Or for that matter any voluntary work on the internet?
Lack of Capital and a general aversion to risk taking.

Regards,
KRS
 

Nacchinarkiniyan

Well-known member
KRS,

I am not talking about Indians in the U.S. I am talking about the Indians in India.

1. How come even with millions of software developers India is yet to produce a single software of international quality? The Russians have done it. They have produced ABBYY Fine reader the finest OCR software in the world. Kaspersky is also from Eastern Europe. Why are Indians doing only coding for others and not doing any original work?
There is now 'original' s/w produced by Indians in India (Please look up the risk managed financial s/w, s/w apps for manufacturing etc., coming out of B'lore and elsewhere). I can make a search if you want and list them. I think in the USA, Indians have been contributing much original work in AI and other s/w disciplines for a while. The technology is at a stage now, making 'individual inventions' as opposed to 'group inventions' is becoming that much harder.
I am talking about consumer software. Tell me one. Even shareware/freeware. Written by individuals. Some shareware had come out in the late 90s like Post Office.

How come even the leading banks in India are dependent on software from other countries?
s/w product business requires up front capital. I think you will see this part of the business accelerate in India (with the associated Indian authorship) in the near future.
I have some personal knowledge about this.

3. When compared to software developers from other countries, how come very few Indians are involved in Open Source Development? Or for that matter any voluntary work on the internet?
Lack of Capital and a general aversion to risk taking.
Open source development is a contributory effort. One need put in only his time and effort. Not money. Then you do not get paid.

This is also true of other voluntary efforts where you put in your effort. But you do not get paid.

That is also the reason why there are very few non-commercial web sites about Hinduism. There are thousands of Christian sites. Even Muslim sites are growing. But even Indian temple sites close down if they do not generate income.

These indicate

Indians do not do anything for free.

Lack of capital has not prevented thousands of Americans from making freeware/shareware available on the net. It is these software which have made computers popular with the common man.These are not written by well paid software engineers. But by pioneers who want to contribute to the community. They spent time to develop it and share it with people.

American women who are divorced and who are holding two jobs to make both ends meet do voluntary work on the net. It gives a community feeling.

I am pointing this out as the usual excuse is that the Americans have money.

There is something lacking in us Indians.
 

KRS

Well-known member
Dear Sri Nacchinarkiniyan Ji,

I am posting four articles about Indian s/w industry below. I know you probably have read them, but I am posting them for our members' benefit:

http://www.ibef.org/artdisplay.aspx?cat_id=55&art_id=8843
http://blog.nasscom.in/emerge/tag/made-in-india/
http://dqindia.ciol.com/content/DQTop20_2006/giants06/2006/106072525.asp
http://pcworld.about.com/od/businesscenter/India-Targets-Software-Product.htm
I agree, we Indians generally do not generally volunteer. I think our religion while promoting individual moksha, tends to leave it to an individual the voluntarism suited for modern times. It is not emphasized at the societal level like Christianity or Islam or Judaism.

We always ask for 'kosuru'. But we don't give it to others that readily. Just a general observation.

Regards,
KRS
 

Nacchinarkiniyan

Well-known member
Dear Sri Nacchinarkiniyan Ji,

I agree, we Indians generally do not generally volunteer. I think our religion while promoting individual moksha, tends to leave it to an individual the voluntarism suited for modern times. It is not emphasized at the societal level like Christianity or Islam or Judaism.

We always ask for 'kosuru'. But we don't give it to others that readily. Just a general observation.

Regards,
KRS

This is exactly the point that I am making. Just take a look at Wikipedia. There are not that many volunteers from India. Many articles on Hinduism are written by an organization known for its sectarian views. But in the absence of volunteers we are not able to counter this.

Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy is another project where you hardly see anyone from India.

This problem of individual Vs the society is reflected in every field. This is the main reason for the Chalta Hai attitude. Software Billionaires in India do not give money to Charity as readily as Bill Gates did.

U.S was made by people like Andrew Carnegie. Our charitable people construct temples for GODS and ensure that the temple is called after them.

When will we ever learn?
 
H

hariharan1972

Guest
KRS Sir and Nacchi Sir,

The reference to Tally by Nacchi sir is more indicative of the lack of Software Products created by Indian S/w companies.

Apart from Tally (which by the way is a very relied product by lot of SMBs), I can think of Finnacle of Infosys (contributing to around 4% of their revenues) and Flexicube of Iflex (Oracle has a major shareholding) as other successful IT Products. Both are Banking software.

However i would agree with Sri Nacchi sir that Indians havent exactly taken the IT Products business by storm.

I am sure KRS sir has seen the industry far upclose than i have but here are my thoughts :

a) The father of IT industry as widely regarded is FC Kohli of TCS. TCS set up in 1968 is not among the Top 10 IT companies in the world. It took TCS nearly 30 years to cross $4B mark. So it is obvious that for a long time, atleast until the mid 90s India did not have the 'support system' (PC penetration, Educational system etc..) to deliver high growth.

b) Thanks to the Macaulay system, we could speak english better than the Chinese and some East Asian countries which proved to be more than just an useful differentiator. And ofcourse the cost arbitrage. The fact that we were a low cost nation with acceptable english standards was really the start point for the IT industry.

c) Then came the Y2K. Thanks to whichever johnny who didnt create 4 placeholders for the year, we hit the jackpot. But for Y2K, I really doubt whether IT industry would be the industry it is today.

I still feel that it is a bit too ambitious to expect the Indian IT industry to move up the value chain and create the IT products that have transnational market and patronage. I think our industry is still not in that league.

Having said that, Companies such as Infosys, TCS, Wipro have started making a move up the value chain as reflected by the many transformational deals that these companies are winning these days. As a case in point, i can quote the fact that TCS counts Ferrari as one of it's customers.

Before I completely digress, coming back to NRN's comments, i am actually baffled as to how many TBs tend to be either self-congratulatory or deprecatory.

The truth surely lies somewhere between.

I am of the view that NRN's reference to Brahmins/ism is more indicative of the 'defensive' mindset that is associated with the community.

I am sure sirs that you know that for long the 3% GDP growth of India used to be known as the 'Hindu rate of growth'. So anything conservative or defensive is generally associated with Hinduism or as NRN has done to Brahmanism.

I think it is safe to say that Brahmins usually prefer the white collar job and dont really consider entrepreneurship as an option.

Possibly i think NRN feels that Brahmins set up the standard or firmed up the belief that 'white collar job' is possibly the one to die for which possibly had a huge rub-off effect on other communities.

So the other communities perhaps followed suit taking the safer options and wanted to become Accountants or Doctors or Engineers.

Having said that, i think NRN's comments are stereotypical of those who count themselves among the intellectuals. And for the first time perhaps, i think NRN has not done himself too proud.

I am sad because NRN unwittingly joins the club of those who tend to look at the past and find excuses for their present predicament.

It is my firm belief that if a Dalit's great grandfather was prevented from learning the vedas in his heydays, it does not in anyway preclude the Dalit of today from learning Java.

Today the access to education is blocked not by caste but by the colour of the money. The egregious political class is riding piggy back on the Brahmanical system and placing all the fault at their doors to obfuscate their failures.
 

KRS

Well-known member
Dear Sri Hari,

I agree with your history of Indian s/w. During late 1970s I was working at a firm in USA where a lots of Indian s/w people were imported from TCS. They did not at all have any credibility then. Today, it is a different story. In my mind the Indian s/w industry is barely a decade old. And to add to it, they had to grow with business from abroad. So I think they will grow steadily over time.

Regarding NRN, I wish he had selected different words. But let us not shoot the messenger.

In USA, it has been shown that blacks from different parts of the world (Carribean, Africa and others) generally tend to do better in life compared to American blacks. There have been lots of theories put forward to explain this. But the consensus is that the American blacks are still recovering from their past. And the recent welfare patronage system has done a lot of damage to their families.

With this in mind, I hope we see the plight of our dalit brothers with some empathy. All of us sometimes need freedom from our past in certain areas, in addition to the explicit freedom in a free country. I fervently hope they acheive it within the next few decades. Even though this is a digression, with your permission I wanted to make this point.

Regards,
KRS
 

Nacchinarkiniyan

Well-known member
In USA, it has been shown that blacks from different parts of the world (Carribean, Africa and others) generally tend to do better in life compared to American blacks. There have been lots of theories put forward to explain this. But the consensus is that the American blacks are still recovering from their past. And the recent welfare patronage system has done a lot of damage to their families.

There have been comparison between Blacks in U.S and Dalits in some of the discussions. This is but natural since most of the Christian Dalit organizations have their base in the U.S.

But there is a basic fallacy in this comparison. When a Black walks into any establishment in the U.S, he is noticed and it could kindle age old prejudices. You can distinguish a Black from a White.

But in India there is no way you can make out a Dalit from the rest of the population. Any one who claims he can make this distinction is the biggest liar in the world. Because the general public can not make out, the age old prejudices are not immediately kindled.

Even names are not distinct. We have a I.A.S officer in Tamil Nadu by name Iyer who is a Dalit.

This is true of cities and towns.

The situation in villages is different as there every one knows everyone else.

Infosys has been accused of being a Brahmin organization.

We need social leaders who will work for the welfare of the Dalits. Not rabble rousers and intellectuals with theories.
 

KRS

Well-known member
Dear Sri Nacchinarkiniyan Ji,

Just to clarify. I in no way suggesting that the struggles of the american blacks are in anyway the same as that of the dalits. I have already said that racism is different from casteism.

The only reason I brought up the analogy to say that it takes time for the people who have been put down for so long to spring back up.

I hope you do not paint me in the category of a 'theorist and a rabble rouser!'

Regards,
KRS
 

Nacchinarkiniyan

Well-known member
KRS,

Sorry. I never meant anything like that. It was only something which I wanted to point out in this context.

To come back to topic

Frankly, the problem is due to our caste system and the dominance of Brahmins in our society for long period. The Brahminical system said my job is to think of the higher worlds. My job is to think of connecting you people with God. I don't want to do anything that has a relationship with the real world.
The Brahmins wrote the Kamasutra. Aryabhatta was a Brahmin. The Brahmins wrote on all subjects. The Dharmasasthras were law books which gave the law of the land, the laws by which the Kings of India ruled. Even today some of our laws are based on Dharmasasthra.
 

KRS

Well-known member
Yes, I agree. Our forefathers contributed mightily to the Hindu civilization in almost all areas. This is why I have pointed out that Sri NRN should not have said what he has said, but should have taken a more nuanced position.

But, on the other hand, we were responsible for the culture as a whole. And we somehow at best did not desist and at worst did assist in the evolution of a culture where there came to be a hierarchical view in the society of all work. On a side bar we did the same thing happen to creating the single most blight in our religion - untouchability.

As a brahmin today, I do not feel that I should be made accountable for the past doings of my forefathers, whose contributions mostly stand tall. This is why I am firmly against dredging up decades/centuries old history and demanding retribution. If we go down this path, nary a single person will be left in this world who would stand innocent in the twilight of history.

But what I think is wrong is to be defensive and try to say that our forefathers never made a mistake. This is not a logical position which only creates ridicule and loss of credibility in the society. Admission of Truth is never wrong. It will set us free.

Just my thoughts.

Regards,
KRS
 

kunjuppu

Well-known member
Admission of Truth is never wrong. It will set us free.
Regards,
KRS


KRS, a gem of a summary of your position. i was almost tempted to join the conversation, but found it so thrilling, that i feared i would be a spoiler.

good going KRS, Nacchi....
 

KRS

Well-known member
Dear Sri Kunjuppu Ji,

Thank you for your comments.

You and Sri Nacchinarkiniyan are class acts in this Forum (I hope this is not taken as Jaalra!), I can only hope that when I express my ideas they do not tumble out with sharp edges as soft and caring as both of your words are.

My friends and family always say I am too direct. I can only hope that aspect of my personality does not offend, including our more orthodox members.

Regards,
KRS
 
OP
OP
K

krisanantha

Member
Response to mr krs

My response in RED colour

....How dare a Brahmin would dare to criticize his own for this problem, he says that exists in this country?, ....
I did not raise this note, due to hurt caused by a Brahmin putting us down! In my note you will not find any reference to NRN being a Brahmin!!! Sorry Mr KRS, I have to completely disagree with your views. They are unsubstantiated & reflect a siege mentality of current day Brahmins. This is the outcome of our media’s onslaught against Brahmins (a form of Stockholm syndrome!)

First, let me ask whether the problem as described by him exist? Because if it does not, his whole thesis falls apart and along with it his accusation of the Brahmins. In my opinion, the problem does exist. There seems to be a general 'no pride in my work' syndrome in India. One time while sitting in a a/c first class train compartment in Chennai Central, I noticed the shoddy workmanship(crooked accessories, missing nuts, etc.) and dirt in general. I assumed it must have been an old compartment. To my astonishment, my fellow passenger who worked for the railways said that it was a three month old compartment! You see the same quality of workmanship in most of the public buses, new home finishes etc. Unless someone is on them (I had a first hand experience on this while I was posted to India about a decade ago), it seems to me a large part of our workforce has no interest in doing a great job (no pride). This also shows up in the prevelance of corruption. A person who looks at his/her job as a source of honor and pride would be much less corruptible. So, we can safely say that Sri NM's assertion about this part is correct. (By the way, this is a cultural problem, not a political performance one).
You have perfectly described the problem. This problem has nothing to do with our caste system. If that is the case how come our folks do so well while abroad??

Then we need to ask how this situation came about? Is his assertion that it is because of caste correct? Because our castes promoted division of labor and unfortunately have become hierarchical in terms of social status accorded to these castes (till recently in history), one should accept this thesis - I do not see any other reason for this loudly obvious disdain and dminished status for certain professions.
Where is the connect Mr KRS. ???? NRN says that it is due to Brahmin dominance & this new theory that Brahmins were to connect everyone to god! Absurd!!! A Brahmin had his job defined . The poor fellow lived in abject penury & was to go in pursuit of true knowledge. He was never to go & tell everyone that they had to get connected to god. He offered his advice to those who sought it. But the system is beautiful & said that each man (woman) has his duty & they must do it to keep the society in good shape. These duties were delineated along caste lines. This is where the usual misconception starts. Caste is nothing but a classification of people based on their abilities (physical, mental etc). So the entire society was at peace as long as each man excelled in areas he was good at. Pls remember the context on which NRN is offering his “profound analysis”. His 108 proposals to the bureaucracy were not acted upon. Not acted upon because they were all Brahmins? Or is the bureaucracy so committed to Brahminical thinking (assuming that is the cause for all problems!) . If anything we have a whole lot of Brahmin haters up there!! Ok tell me this…NRN is supposed to do plain speak & is knows for his straight views. So why isn’t he rightfully blaming the politicians & bureaucracy for the problems. He will not, because that will hurt his existence & land him into all sorts of troubles. By the way what is this argument regarding lack of pride in doing things with hand than with the head!!!!! How will you relate this to the 108 project ideas that were not acted upon? Obviously at the stage when he proposed them it needed “head” work by the bureaucracy & not :hand: work or physical work! This is classical case of wanting to fit an absurd theory into a problem. If he is referring to folks wanting software job as compared to say a civil engineer’s job that is wrong too. People go after jobs that get them good money & status. You might remember that three decades ago it was civil & mechanical engineering professions that were popular.

So, once you accept this, one has to ask the next question - are the Brahimns the culprits. To understand this question, one has to ask the following questions: 1) Were the Brahmins responsible for the cuture today that obviously does not respect the pride in all jobs/skills? 2) If not who is responsible?

The first question can be answered by caregorically stating, yes we are responsible for a large part, because we were the teachers of ALL the skills in the society and a Brahmin was supposed to be well versed in all trades/art in the society. We were the custodians of culture in the society.
No we were not supposed to be teachers of ALL skills. Brahmins were in pursuit of the eternal knowledge & were not mandated to teach everything under the sun. Brahmins delineated what was essentially available in the various holy texts & Vedas on ways to lead a meaningful life. By no stretch were they in any position to ensure that everybody followed it.

Having said that, I think all the castes were equally reponsible for this situation (this is what happens when a profession is made a birth right, without outside competition).

So, I agree with Sri NM's thesis. But I do not agree that the Brahmins ARE responsible for this state of affairs (I think we are unwittng victims as well in this). I wish he had parsed his opinion a bit more detailed.

I do not think he has said what he said out of any political reason - I think he is generally voicing a concern about our culture, which is widely held. I have heard it from many a people before and more importantlty I have personally witnessed it.


My problem with NRN’s “analysis” is that it is factually incorrect, intellectually conceited & completely absurd If only for a moment one considered the humongous contributions made by Brahmins towards the development of India (pre & post independence) on would not make such sweeping statements. Thus I am tempted to believe that there must be a political plan to these statements, can you deny this with certainity?
 

KRS

Well-known member
Dear sri krisanantha Ji,

My response is in 'blue':

My response in RED colour

....How dare a Brahmin would dare to criticize his own for this problem, he says that exists in this country?, ....
I did not raise this note, due to hurt caused by a Brahmin putting us down! In my note you will not find any reference to NRN being a Brahmin!!! Sorry Mr KRS, I have to completely disagree with your views. They are unsubstantiated & reflect a siege mentality of current day Brahmins. This is the outcome of our media’s onslaught against Brahmins (a form of Stockholm syndrome!)
I said how I felt as an instant reaction. So, are you saying how I felt was not legitimate?

First, let me ask whether the problem as described by him exist? Because if it does not, his whole thesis falls apart and along with it his accusation of the Brahmins. In my opinion, the problem does exist. There seems to be a general 'no pride in my work' syndrome in India. One time while sitting in a a/c first class train compartment in Chennai Central, I noticed the shoddy workmanship(crooked accessories, missing nuts, etc.) and dirt in general. I assumed it must have been an old compartment. To my astonishment, my fellow passenger who worked for the railways said that it was a three month old compartment! You see the same quality of workmanship in most of the public buses, new home finishes etc. Unless someone is on them (I had a first hand experience on this while I was posted to India about a decade ago), it seems to me a large part of our workforce has no interest in doing a great job (no pride). This also shows up in the prevelance of corruption. A person who looks at his/her job as a source of honor and pride would be much less corruptible. So, we can safely say that Sri NM's assertion about this part is correct. (By the way, this is a cultural problem, not a political performance one).
You have perfectly described the problem. This problem has nothing to do with our caste system. If that is the case how come our folks do so well while abroad??
We are discussing about the prevalent work culture in India. Let us then think what had the greatest impact on Indian work life over centuries? It is the caste system and only the caste system.

Our folks doing well abroad exactly buttresses my argument. If the work culture is different our enterprising folks who go abroad can adapt to those cultures. I don't see this as an example to refute my thesis.

Then we need to ask how this situation came about? Is his assertion that it is because of caste correct? Because our castes promoted division of labor and unfortunately have become hierarchical in terms of social status accorded to these castes (till recently in history), one should accept this thesis - I do not see any other reason for this loudly obvious disdain and dminished status for certain professions.
Where is the connect Mr KRS. ???? NRN says that it is due to Brahmin dominance & this new theory that Brahmins were to connect everyone to god! Absurd!!!
A Brahmin had his job defined . The poor fellow lived in abject penury & was to go in pursuit of true knowledge. He was never to go & tell everyone that they had to get connected to god. He offered his advice to those who sought it. But the system is beautiful & said that each man (woman) has his duty & they must do it to keep the society in good shape. These duties were delineated along caste lines. This is where the usual misconception starts. Caste is nothing but a classification of people based on their abilities (physical, mental etc). So the entire society was at peace as long as each man excelled in areas he was good at. Pls remember the context on which NRN is offering his “profound analysis”. His 108 proposals to the bureaucracy were not acted upon. Not acted upon because they were all Brahmins? Or is the bureaucracy so committed to Brahminical thinking (assuming that is the cause for all problems!) . If anything we have a whole lot of Brahmin haters up there!! Ok tell me this…NRN is supposed to do plain speak & is knows for his straight views. So why isn’t he rightfully blaming the politicians & bureaucracy for the problems. He will not, because that will hurt his existence & land him into all sorts of troubles. By the way what is this argument regarding lack of pride in doing things with hand than with the head!!!!! How will you relate this to the 108 project ideas that were not acted upon? Obviously at the stage when he proposed them it needed “head” work by the bureaucracy & not :hand: work or physical work! This is classical case of wanting to fit an absurd theory into a problem. If he is referring to folks wanting software job as compared to say a civil engineer’s job that is wrong too. People go after jobs that get them good money & status. You might remember that three decades ago it was civil & mechanical engineering professions that were popular.
I have already said, Sri NRN did not state this properly. I raised the issue of lack of pride in one's job in India as the indication that there are 'hierarchies' in jobs. NRN did not. I raised this to say that the work culture in India has become like this. By the way, the original intent of the Varna system was beautiful. But it went off the wrong track sometime in the past.

So, once you accept this, one has to ask the next question - are the Brahimns the culprits. To understand this question, one has to ask the following questions: 1) Were the Brahmins responsible for the cuture today that obviously does not respect the pride in all jobs/skills? 2) If not who is responsible?

The first question can be answered by caregorically stating, yes we are responsible for a large part, because we were the teachers of ALL the skills in the society and a Brahmin was supposed to be well versed in all trades/art in the society. We were the custodians of culture in the society.
No we were not supposed to be teachers of ALL skills. Brahmins were in pursuit of the eternal knowledge & were not mandated to teach everything under the sun. Brahmins delineated what was essentially available in the various holy texts & Vedas on ways to lead a meaningful life. By no stretch were they in any position to ensure that everybody followed it.

Please read these two paragraphs from Kanchi Maha Periaval's treasure of a book 'Hindu Dharma':
http://www.kamakoti.org/hindudharma/part20/chap10.htm

"The Brahmin must be conversant with the fourteen branches of the Vedic lore. He must be proficient even in Gandharva-veda or music and must be acquainted with agricultural science, construction of houses, etc. At the same time he must give instructions in these subjects to pupils from the appropriate castes. His own vocation is the study of the Vedas and he must have no other source of income."
"If the Brahmin is asked, "Do you know to wield a knife? " he must be able to answer, "Yes, I know". If he is asked, "Do you know to draw and paint" again he must say, "Yes". But he cannot wield a knife or become an artist to earn his livelihood. All he can do is to learn these arts and teach others the same according to their caste. He is permitted to receive a daksina to maintain himself and he must be contented with it however small the sum may be. The Brahmin's speciality' his true vocation, is Vedic learning."

He also states that the Brahmins were the custodians/advancers of the society's culture.

Having said that, I think all the castes were equally reponsible for this situation (this is what happens when a profession is made a birth right, without outside competition).

So, I agree with Sri NM's thesis. But I do not agree that the Brahmins ARE responsible for this state of affairs (I think we are unwittng victims as well in this). I wish he had parsed his opinion a bit more detailed.

I do not think he has said what he said out of any political reason - I think he is generally voicing a concern about our culture, which is widely held. I have heard it from many a people before and more importantlty I have personally witnessed it.


My problem with NRN’s “analysis” is that it is factually incorrect, intellectually conceited & completely absurd If only for a moment one considered the humongous contributions made by Brahmins towards the development of India (pre & post independence) on would not make such sweeping statements. Thus I am tempted to believe that there must be a political plan to these statements, can you deny this with certainity?
I do not know his mind. Yes, the Brahmins had contributed mightily towards Indian culture, arts, sciences and philosophy. My point was that though what Sri NRN said was not completely correct (in terms of contributions), he was not completely wrong either (work culture), for which the Brahmins need to share some blame.

Regards,
KRS
 
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OP
OP
K

krisanantha

Member
Response 5th May 2009


.
I did not raise this note, due to hurt caused by a Brahmin putting us down! In my note you will not find any reference to NRN being a Brahmin!!! Sorry Mr KRS, I have to completely disagree with your views. They are unsubstantiated & reflect a siege mentality of current day Brahmins. This is the outcome of our media’s onslaught against Brahmins (a form of Stockholm syndrome!)
I said how I felt as an instant reaction. So, are you saying how I felt was not legitimate?
Sorry, let me clarify at the outset, there is absolutely no intent to cause any personal hurt to you. My point was that I had not raised my note based on such a feeling (that a brahmin had said this about us) .


You have perfectly described the problem. This problem has nothing to do with our caste system. If that is the case how come our folks do so well while abroad??
We are discussing about the prevalent work culture in India. Let us then think what had the greatest impact on Indian work life over centuries? It is the caste system and only the caste system.

Our folks doing well abroad exactly buttresses my argument. If the work culture is different our enterprising folks who go abroad can adapt to those cultures. I don't see this as an example to refute my thesis.
In other words are you saying that India’s poor work culture is due to Brahminical thinking? Pardon me, where is the correlation??? If that is true then how do you have so many world class enterprises here in India (many headed by Brahmins!!!!) ? Why does outsourcing happen to India? Cost alone cannot be a clincher. Would you then go about saying that these world class companies are exceptions!! Mind you there are many of them. Have these world class companies been excluded from the Brahminical thinking (whatever that means!)? Let us understand this very clearly. NRN’s problem with govt in the context of his 108 projects is due to the lack of accountability in the govt which has absolutely nothing to do with Brahminical thinking. Our problem is that we readily acquiesce to such absurdities without a second thought. This is what I referred to earlier as the Stockholm Syndrome. Unfortunately NRN didn’t have the guts to call a spade a spade.

Where is the connect Mr KRS. ???? NRN says that it is due to Brahmin dominance & this new theory that Brahmins were to connect everyone to god! Absurd!!!
A Brahmin had his job defined . The poor fellow lived in abject penury & was to go in pursuit of true knowledge. He was never to go & tell everyone that they had to get connected to god. He offered his advice to those who sought it. But the system is beautiful & said that each man (woman) has his duty & they must do it to keep the society in good shape. These duties were delineated along caste lines. This is where the usual misconception starts. Caste is nothing but a classification of people based on their abilities (physical, mental etc). So the entire society was at peace as long as each man excelled in areas he was good at. Pls remember the context on which NRN is offering his “profound analysis”. His 108 proposals to the bureaucracy were not acted upon. Not acted upon because they were all Brahmins? Or is the bureaucracy so committed to Brahminical thinking (assuming that is the cause for all problems!) . If anything we have a whole lot of Brahmin haters up there!! Ok tell me this…NRN is supposed to do plain speak & is knows for his straight views. So why isn’t he rightfully blaming the politicians & bureaucracy for the problems. He will not, because that will hurt his existence & land him into all sorts of troubles. By the way what is this argument regarding lack of pride in doing things with hand than with the head!!!!! How will you relate this to the 108 project ideas that were not acted upon? Obviously at the stage when he proposed them it needed “head” work by the bureaucracy & not
clip_image001.gif
work or physical work! This is classical case of wanting to fit an absurd theory into a problem. If he is referring to folks wanting software job as compared to say a civil engineer’s job that is wrong too. People go after jobs that get them good money & status. You might remember that three decades ago it was civil & mechanical engineering professions that were popular.

I have already said, Sri NRN did not state this properly. I raised the issue of lack of pride in one's job in India as the indication that there are 'hierarchies' in jobs. NRN did not. I raised this to say that the work culture in India has become like this. By the way, the original intent of the Varna system was beautiful. But it went off the wrong track sometime in the past.
Any place where there is no accountability (any country any continent) you will have this work culture. It is true with US gov too. My problem is with this conceited correlation that NRN Is trying to establish between poor governance & brahminical thinking

No we were not supposed to be teachers of ALL skills. Brahmins were in pursuit of the eternal knowledge & were not mandated to teach everything under the sun. Brahmins delineated what was essentially available in the various holy texts & Vedas on ways to lead a meaningful life. By no stretch were they in any position to ensure that everybody followed it.

Please read these two paragraphs from Kanchi Maha Periaval's treasure of a book 'Hindu Dharma':
http://www.kamakoti.org/hindudharma/part20/chap10.htm

"The Brahmin must be conversant with the fourteen branches of the Vedic lore. He must be proficient even in Gandharva-veda or music and must be acquainted with agricultural science, construction of houses, etc. At the same time he must give instructions in these subjects to pupils from the appropriate castes. His own vocation is the study of the Vedas and he must have no other source of income."
"If the Brahmin is asked, "Do you know to wield a knife? " he must be able to answer, "Yes, I know". If he is asked, "Do you know to draw and paint" again he must say, "Yes". But he cannot wield a knife or become an artist to earn his livelihood. All he can do is to learn these arts and teach others the same according to their caste. He is permitted to receive a daksina to maintain himself and he must be contented with it however small the sum may be. The Brahmin's speciality' his true vocation, is Vedic learning."

He also states that the Brahmins were the custodians/advancers of the society's culture.
Thanks for this extract & reference. I have had the fortune of reading the Tamizh version of this. Nevertheless I must clarify. Periyavaa’s reference has a context & must be understood to have applied say a few thousand years ago (different yuga or even until the start of Kali). However after that, say in the last few centuries this was completely out of practice (as in the Brahmin learning the 64 vidyas etc & leading a non materialistic life). If you take the last few centuries the average Brahmin was in a social circumstance where he had to make a decent living & hence the consequent transition to employment or similar pursuits. But the problem with the example you have given is that it goes totally against what NRN says which is that “The Brahminical system said my job is to think of the higher worlds. My job is to think of connecting you people with God. I don't want to do anything that has a relationship with the real world.” But your extract confirms that Brahmins of yore were not involved in just thinking of higher world! That is exactly my problem with his statements which is that they are completely incorrect.


My problem with NRN’s “analysis” is that it is factually incorrect, intellectually conceited & completely absurd If only for a moment one considered the humongous contributions made by Brahmins towards the development of India (pre & post independence) on would not make such sweeping statements. Thus I am tempted to believe that there must be a political plan to these statements, can you deny this with certainity?
I do not know his mind. Yes, the Brahmins had contributed mightily towards Indian culture, arts, sciences and philosophy. My point was that though what Sri NRN said was not completely correct (in terms of contributions), he was not completely wrong either (work culture), for which the Brahmins need to share some blame.
Neither do I know his mind. We don’t need to. People of such status & following must be very very cautious about the things they say. They will have to weigh their words very carefully especially on such topics. He must not make loose comments simply because it suits the “political climate” of this country. Let me raise this hypothetical question just as an example. All of us know the status of Bihar. Many other states have made rapid progress in the last 50 years. Bihar which once had the greatest learning institutions in India, is in such a pathetic state. Muslims currently are about 15% of that state which is a significant number. If I said that the reason for Bihar’s current state is due to the Muslim population & their thinking etc wouldn’t it be terribly absurd & un substantiated. NRN’s assertions are no different from this!!
 
S

sapr333

Guest
Y I do not feel that I should be made accountable for the past doings of my forefathers,

Regards,
KRS

Few crispy lines to ponder..

If a debt contracted by the father has not been repaid during his lifetime, by himself, it must be restored, after his death, by his sons. Should they separate, they shall repay it according to their respective shares. This is Indian Hindu-Family-law set upon doctrine of pious obligation

 
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H

hariharan1972

Guest


Few crispy lines to ponder..

If a debt contracted by the father has not been repaid during his lifetime, by himself, it must be restored, after his death, by his sons. Should they separate, they shall repay it according to their respective shares. This is Indian Hindu-Family-law set upon doctrine of pious obligation


However if the father was "perceived" to be a "murderer" and was not brought to justice, his sons cannot be incarcerated or awarded capital punishment.

Since this "father's debt" is a debt in "partnership" with other "partners" the principle of "Garner vs Murray" should apply.
 

happyhindu

Well-known member
i agree with hariharanji.

if i were to be held responsible for the mistakes of a few dead ancestors now, then i wud have to go looking for all the kids they sired and get the rest of the so-called legitimate lot to share their property with the "other section"..errr... :der: i am already running the risk of being disowned for all the horrible things i have been saying...
 
S

sapr333

Guest
However if the father was "perceived" to be a "murderer" and was not brought to justice, his sons cannot be incarcerated or awarded capital punishment.

If so, then you should tell me, whats wrong with our hindu law, by which the sons are asked to repay his fathers debts?

Lets try to find a solution to this issue,with this reverse approach..

Btw,there is a process of forgiving or pardoning a transgression, which is very well found in both the wester/eastern religions. Doctrine of Karma stands tall in this. What is that all about generic curse?

Lets not forget to figure out this word 'Atonement" in line with Karma..!!!
 
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