Self-affirmation and Responsibility!
Why is man in a constant need for self-affirmation? What makes him fear that his existence is lost amidst the myriad other personalities surrounding him everyday? It is this fear that makes him strive to establish his hold, not just on his relations, but also on the environment, society and eventually the entire creation. One may argue against this on grounds of intellectual curiosity, education and the quest for knowledge! But what is quest for knowledge other than a means of getting over fear? Ignorance, I feel, contrary to the popular belief, isn’t bliss. It breeds fear. Self-affirmation is hence a need to get over the ignorance we have, about ourselves! Ignorance about our abilities breeds not just fear, but also its ally – doubt. When we doubt ourselves, we need others to alleviate them, and thus we depend on others. When the need is dire to turn in, we turn out!
In order for them to cater to our needs, we create a hold on them. We manipulate them in various ways – physically by brutal strength, intellectually through the means of education, and emotionally. Rogues, theives, bullys are all examples of the first kind, while the Government, Industry, Consumerism, show case the 2nd case. The last instance is more personal for each human being – while he is being manipulated, he also emotionally manipulates others through his relationship/power! On a more subtler level, as I feel is evident, all of these are dependents. The US Government, that wants to manipulate us through the means of education, convincing that the breach into our personal lives under the pretext of national security is but a thriving example of a political system, that to affirm its existence has left no stone unturned – in the domestic politics or international! What is alarming is the susceptibility of the common man! This post by Chandan is a glaring example for what I have to say! Though comic, it poses some grave questions about the responsibility of the government.
Talking of responsibilities, taking a tangent from here (which I do so often, sorry readers!), how responsible must a writer be? Creativity and Responsibility are two things that at some instances, make odd bed partners. I was exposed to this aspect, ever since a story I wrote, has been appearing in www.thatskannada.com. I have had people write to me complimenting my work, but at the same time, saying how influenced they were by it! Some even trying to share their personal matters with me, and asking for a feedback! The two faces of self-affirmation and responsibility are now staring at me. Am I responsible for their self-affirmation? Is it my responsibility to account for their fears/doubts and help them with it? Or can I just brush them off? What if I take refuge in my creativity, and not be accountable for my work! Write, whatever I feel like, about whatever I feel like, and just throw it out to the masses! It’s upto them to pick it up, or leave it there! They can do whatever they wish with it! Either get influenced by it, or laugh at it! Whether I can remain aloof of their involvement depends on my need for self-affirmation as an author! Am I using my work to manipulate the readers, and thus prove to myself my existentialism as an author?
As of now, I have only questions…… anyone with answers?