He was standing alone, outside a cafeteria leaning against the concrete pillar, thinking, for a long time. There were people passing by, he had responded to their customary greetings, but he barely remembered doing that afterwards. Only thing which he was aware of was the hot cup of coffee he was holding. It was cold, unusually cold and he liked the warm feeling of the cup in hand. Suddenly he felt resentment towards himself for leaning against the pillar. “Why do I need this pillar for support”, he asked himself. He observed the pillar from bottom to top again. “No, the pillar doesn’t care if I need it or not. It is there to support the building structure. This pillar is as concrete as the pillars which I have chosen and constructed carefully for building my character”, he thought. “No, I have never doubted the strength of those pillars and will never doubt; whatever be the setbacks and difficulties. Why then do I constantly feel an attack on foundation of these pillars? I am surely too insignificant in those attackers’ eyes.” He quickly found the answer. “Sure you are too insignificant for them to worry, but the pillars are not. It is precisely those pillars which they want to attack.” “But then, who are ‘they’?” he asked himself. “They are everybody and nobody.” He had a derisive smile. He started walking back.
He recalled certain news items read earlier that day. He couldn’t believe an article titled ‘short selling rumours is not a bad strategy’ can become news. He had read a judgment passed by a Supreme Court judge which even a 6 year old will be ashamed of. But he had studied how there is invariably a ‘reference case’ for everything that happens and how conveniently a judge can abdicate his responsibility to apply rational mind. What someone does at his work is rarely different from his convictions about life, he thought. “What will happen when a manager will abdicate responsibility? He will hire a consultant. What if consultant also does the same? Who cares? It is no longer manager’s responsibility. Observe the basis of some financial instruments, he told himself, and see similar implications in real life. What is mortgaged? – ‘Who cares? Everything is fair’ attitude. What is the collateral? – The moratorium on identifying reality. Where is the derived security sold? – ‘The world market which scoffs at rational mind concept.’ Till when? – Till someone innocent doesn’t question the fundamental, like the child does in emperor’s new clothes story.”
“What is the answer of combined gang of some economists, socialists and altruists to the ‘greed’ resulting because of above theory? Distribute the wealth equally among everyone without bothering who actually created it. By their solution a beggar has righteous claim on a successful person’s wealth. It is not beggar’s fault that the other person was ‘privilieged’. Privileged? In what? Using own mind? That won’t be answered. These altruists then start applying this theory everywhere. So even when what they ask for is fair they don’t find rational argument and the supporting arguments such as “those who are in XLRI by clearing XAT have done so because of coaching institutes so they shouldn’t consider themselves special” are born.
He suddenly remembered her. It brought smile on his face. This is a good way, he thought. I can think of all questions as a conversation with her. “Will the answers be different than what I expect? Let me try.” He had lost his way to his room and reached wrong floor of hostel. “Ahhhh… not again”, he said and resumed the ‘conversation’, walking back. Many issues were discussed, argued and agreed upon. He realized it was too late and reluctantly went to bed, but the conversation continued in his mind. The last conscious question he asked was- “Why can’t I become indifferent to all these things even after understanding their true nature?”
To be continued…..