Monday, 14 December 2015

Mind vs Mind-set

Dr R A Mashelkarji illustrates this battle of Indian mind Vs Indian mind set.  He says, today, everybody talks about global village as a great idea but who talked about global village first ? Who said Vasudhaiv Kutumakam? It was an Indian mind. In Maharashtra, Dnyaneshwar is held very highly as a great saint philosopher. He said 'He Vishwachi Maze Ghar' i.e this entire world is my home. So, our great minds talked about a global village long time ago. They were actually 21st century minds but what is our mind set today?

We say that we are all one family. But do you know that when one Japanese and one Japanese come together, how many Japanese do they become? You would say two. No! They become eleven. They form such a great team. Somebody was joking the other day when he asked, 'you know when one Indian and one Indian come together, do you know how many Indians they become?' Not two but zero! They neutralize each other! They do not form a team.  That is because of the Indian mind set.

So, my basic premise is that it is not so much shaping the Indian minds, it is shaping the Indian mind set and we should start looking at the issue of both mind as well as mind set. Not only how will we have clever minds, more intelligent minds, more observant minds, more analytical minds, better minds who synthesize in a clever way but also mind sets that are positive mind sets, constructive, forward looking, mutually reinforcing mindsets that will make it possible for us to shape the 21st century India.

Let me give you another example.  We say Gurur Devo Bhawa Gurur Sakshaat Parabhrama Tasmay Shri Gurave Namah about our teachers. So we taught to look at our teachers as Gods and so on.  Isn't it?  I had presented a little story about my own Guru in my school, Principal Bhave, in the Presidential address at the Science Congress in the year 2000. Mr. Atal Bihari Vajpayee was the then Prime Minister.  He inaugurated the congress.  During lunch, where some Nobel Laureates were also present, a question was raised as to why such great teachers don't exist today. And I still remember Atalji saying Mashelkarji aapko pata hai aisa kyon nahin hota? Is ka kaaran yeh hai ki samaj mein aaj unko pratishtha nahin hai. He said, the research we do not produce Bhaves any more is because the society does not respect and value them. So, here the Indian mind says Gurur Sakshaat Parabhrama and the Indian mind set does exactly what our erstwhile Prime Minister is saying no respect and value for the teacher in the society, so how do we reconcile with this great battle of Indian mind vs Indian mindset? That is going to be the big challenge.  I just gave two examples.  I could give many more.

My young friends, while we are building those great minds of the 21st century, we also need to build the mind sets of the 21st century. So, I would simply propose that we don't have the symposium theme on shaping young minds but we have the symposium theme — "Shaping Young Mind and Mind Sets" just to emphasize this challenge..