Sunday, November 28, 2010

Abstracts From M.N.Vijayan's Writings ( in English ):

     (These are independent translations selected portions of M.N. Vijayan's Writings.)
 Prof. M.N.Vijayan about Mahatma Gandhi
"...In a sense, Gandhiji's response is a kind of resistance against Modernity. Resisting modernity and then confining that at a certain level is the technicality of this response. This is why Gandhiji opposed big industries, consumer culture, modern medical science, modern food habits, wars, imperialism etc. These types of problems still exist. This is a protest which begins at a romantic sphere. And it is not started by Gandhiji. "Return to Nature" is not a principle founded by Gandhiji, but the name of one book Gandhiji read. In fact Gandhiji adopted a type of protest which actually originated in the western world. Gandhiji was the student of Tilak (Bal Gangadhar), who in turn learnt his lesson- "Freedom is one's birth right"- from Rousseau. (Jean-Jacques Rousseau)
The awareness about Freedom is, at the same time an awareness of industrialized era and also a protest against the industrialized world. Both happen simultaneously. The concept of personal freedom is a product of industrialized era. The reason is that, in an industrialized era, an individual become weaker and more alienated. To put it in the normal terms, Individual becomes so irrelevant in an industrialized era. Gandhiji spread slogans like "Gram Swaraj" (independent village), "decentralization of power" etc because, he knew individual's actualization can only happen in a small society. But like all his other dreams, these ideas also failed to materialize."

M.N.Vijayan about the connection between Indolence of Society and Fascism.
"...It is easier to accept others' opinion rather than forming one's own opinion. Copying others' system of production and distribution, method and structure of social life and principles are always easier than developing them originally.

Perhaps, we now recognize that even dependency has its own worthiness. Lethargy has its convenience. In the same way slavery also has its own benefits. Only one master needs to be obeyed is the convenience of slavery. Those who simply obey need not take the trouble of finding out one's own ways. Just following others is enough. So we often move into a type of indolence. This is one aspect of human behaviour. Sleeping is more comfortable than being awakened. Mind can find satisfaction not only in opposing but also in obeying.
............... Fascism's one characteristic is that it simplifies matters in the social structure, in such a way that only a single dictator needs to be obeyed. A dictator can impose a clear idea about questions like "which system should be obeyed?", "Who should rule?", "What should be the nature of production and distribution system?" etc. This is like a ready made dress. A ready made value. No need to measure or verify. We realize that dependency has this convenience only when we started living in an independent India."

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Vijayan Mash On the Similarity of different Myths
Herods (Herod the Great) massacred all the male children of Bethlehem . As the Jesus will be born in there to assassinate him. The similarity exists not only between the names Christ ('krīst) and Krishna, but also in the story of Kamsa and Krishna's birth. Vegan Sharma Ugran has written a Hindi play "Isa Nabi" (Islamic view of Jesus) claiming that Jesus spent his life's unknown period in Kashmir and that the Kashmiri life and thinking had influenced Jesus. Many see similarities between the concepts of Krishna's Gopikas and that of Christ's brides. Krishna dies as an arrow thrust into his foot where as Jesus was crucified with nail. Both rebelled uncompromisingly against the institutions of power.
But our calculation is that Krishna might have lived in BC seventh century even before Budha and the age of Jesus is only 2000 years. Perhaps the stories, people and beliefs might have flowed in together, slowly, and over a period of time got mixed up.
M.N.Vijayan points out Humans are Inherently War-Loving
Humans are fond of carnage. Human beings always glorify massacres. Not only that man dislikes individuals killings, but they damn them too. Only on one of those rare occasions, that an Ashoka felt his Kalinga massacre was a mistake. Why do men behave like this? Why all those Gas chambers? Macabre massacres? Why did those one-man controlled torpedoes of Japan attacked the enemy ships from beneath them, destroyed them and assassinated thousands together?......
......Man always identified himself with orthodox societies which practised carnage and presented those assassins with Vir Chakras. We always appreciate such brave souls. They act as a substitute for our valour or, rather as a substitute for the braveness of our timid mind. We officially sing felicitation songs for our army man. Indeed an army personnel goes to the battlefield not to harm anyone but to feed his wife and children.
Perhaps, an army man could be one of the most compassionate man in the world. However, why he is doing harm to others when he is part of a big machinery, has an important question about human mind within it. Why don't we our-self do this violent act? That, even as we speak appreciatively about the Peace in the valley, our soldiers kill and get killed on the mountains has something about the natural characteristic of National States in it. Now we all realize that, not only nationalism of the National Socialist Party (Nazi) but also of all National States, is in fact, a Nationalism meant to kill and get killed. ... a major puzzle is that, while ordinary public swear they don't want any War, why they are still fond of wars?
M.N.Vijayan About Who Determines Our Choices of Art
During the period of religious supremacy, it was religion and during Feudal period, it was fuedal lords, who determined our aptitude. Our eyes were trained to see only Narayana (God) at a time when we recited the song "What ever one sees is Narayana (God) himself. Worship him!". Kalidasa depicted the stories of Shiva, Parvathi, Dilip, Raghu and Malavika. Even if all these are put together, it is not even one part of the many million population of that time. When we enjoy the works of Kalidasa, we dont ask the question "Where are the rest of the people?" We don't ask, if only the royal men lived here, and where are the rest of the men?" The reason for this is that we were convinced for a very long time that a normal person's life can not be depicted in Literature. The Progressive Literature movement provided the freedom to proclaim that what we need is a Proletarian Literature that depicts and sings about the life of "Daridra Narayana (The poor man)" Instead of carving the idols of Narayana (The God) and writing devotional poems. In the time of modern Market controls, Michael Jackson took the place of Narayana. In both cases, we are denied the privilege to see and express what we like.

 First posted on Nov, 2010. Translation was first done in 2007.
(Minor modifications done on 2nd July 2011 and on 16th Aug 2011. I plan to give more such excerpts in more languages, if possible. Though I keep this in public domain, I dont have any copyright or any right to do this. Just clarification.)


  1. A wonderful & beautiful man! Thank you very much for this!

  2. It lit a fire in my brain... really great. Every one knows but never interpret .