Sunday, November 25, 2007

From Dadagiri to Gandhigiri

I finally managed to see the movie Lage Raho Munna Bhai. A great movie with an excellent mix of humour and sentiment. On top of all this the film has a message! In fact it has been a long time since I last watched a Hindi movie till the climax.

Munna’s transition from Dadagiri in the first movie to Gandhigiri in the sequel has been handled very well by the director. Some Innovative ideas like Munna sending flowers to Lucky have been combined with some interesting sequences where Munna advices the common people on Gandhigiri through FM radio.

The movie has a message that Gandhism still is relevant and works magic. The movie has infact caught the attention of so many people all over the world. There have been several Munna style protests all over the world and so much talks on Gandhigiri.

The Prime Minister of India, Dr. Manmohan Singh, has said, "I was heartened to see recently that back home in India the most popular movie this festival season is a film about a young man's discovery of the universal and timeless relevance of the Mahatma's message.

To me it was a good movie with a message that made me think about Gandhi’s ideals. It was really surprised to see so much material on Munnabhai and Gandhigiri when I searched wikipedia. Does this reflect the power of Wikipedia or Gandhigiri? I would say both.

Coming back to whether Gandhigiri works or not, I would say it is up to you to try out. My only advice is to make sure your enemies, competitors or customers don’t know about your experiment :-)

The Ten Avatars

Logging into Blogger after quite some time though I did reflect on a lot of things during the time in between :-)

I was over to one of my relatives house accompanying my wife (as a chaffeur) for Navarathiri. I happened to see the Dasvatharam Bommais (Mini Idols of the ten incarnations of Vishnu). I was gazing at them for quite some time and to me the ten incarnations seemed to have a deeper meaning.

Though the Gita says that Vishnu takes an avatar whenever there is a threat to dharma, to me they seem to have a close link with several stages in the evolution of the universe, the evolution of mankind. What a nice way of building stories around each stage and carrying it forward over generations? Our ancestors seem to have been way ahead scientifically when other races were roaming around as savages. We seem to have lost our way somewhere and wasted time and money in pompousness, thanks to some foolish kings in between.

Here are the Ten avatars

Matsya - Lord Vishnu as a fish
Koorma- Lord Vishnu as a tortoise
Varaha- Lord Vishnu as a Boar
Narasimha-Lord Vishnu with the face of a lion and body of a man
Vamana- Lord Vishnu as Vamana. Primitive Man, very short
Parasurama - Lord Vishnu in human form with an axe as his weapon. Stone age?
Rama - Lord Vishnu in human form with bow and arrow as his weapon.Balarama - Lord Vishnu in human form with plough as weapon. Advent of agriculture.
Krishna – Lord Vishnu with Chakra a fully metal weapon. Early Bronze age
Kalki – Lord Vishnu with the face of a horse. This is yet to happen as per Hindu mythology but what scares me is that it indicates that we are going back from human form to an animal form.

As is evident, after Krishna comes a big gap given that Kalki is yet to happen. That is when the Industrial revolution happened in other parts and India was blissfully ignorant of what was happening elsewhere.

I am not that good at history, so some of my interpretations might be wrong but I still feel the avatars are a way of depicting the evolution of mankind. What do you think?