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Sunday, November 6, 2011

Survival of the fittest - Sanskrit sayings

Be it an English naturalist Charles Darwin who professed about the branching pattern of evolution based on natural selection "On the origin of Species" or the polymath philosopher Herbert Spencer of the same era who drew an economic parallel to the Darwinian biological evolution terming it as "survival of the fittest", there have been lot of debates over the "Creation Vs Evolution" theories since long. The theory that the strong will overcome the weak and the might shall always be on the right side of evolution has been widely accepted.

You may have read my blog which argues that most evolved things in nature are weak  and I urging you to Hail the frailty here 

But i was reading some nice Sanskrit sayings and few of them arguing in favor of the Social Darwinism and wanted to share them with you.

वनानी दहतो वन्हे: सखा भवति मारुतः!
स एव दीपनाशाय कृशे कस्यास्ति सौहृदम !!
Vanaani Dahato vanhe Saka BHavati Marutaha
sa eva deepana saaya Krshe kasyaasti sahrdam 

The meaning is when it catches fire in the forest, wind is there to assist it (sakha bhavati marutah). But the same wind destroys a lamp. (sa eva deep nashayay). 

The nature in the form of wind would be a friend to a fire that is strong but would extinguish the same fire when it is weak. So if one doesn't have power/wealth, he doesn't have friends (krshe kasyaasti sahrdam ). 

Now I am tempted to quote Poet Bharati here who said,  
அக்னி  குஞ்சொன்று  கண்டேன்  - அதை  
ஆங்கொரு காட்டிலோர்  பொந்திடை  வைத்தேன் 
வெந்து  தணிந்தது  காடு  - தழல் 
வீரத்தில்  குஞ்சென்றும்  மூப்பென்றும்  உண்டோ !!
agni kunjondru kandaen - adhai 
angoru kaatilor ponthidai vaithaen
vendhu thanindhathu kaadu - thazal
veerathil kunjendrum moopendrum undo!!

He found a spark of fire and kept that in a tree in forest. The whole forest got burned down. Is there a difference between a spark (small) and big fire? So here we see that there are some things where its quality is the same irrespective of its size.

Now lets look at one more saying that bolsters the argument for Social Darwinism

अश्वं नैव गजं नैव व्याघ्रं नैव च नैव च !
अजापुत्रं बालिं दह्वात देवो दुर्बलघातका :!!

It not the horse (Ashwam), its not the elephant (Gajam) and its never the tiger (VyaGhram). No, Not at all!! Only the baby goat (AjaaPutram) is sacrificed during any ritual. And the conclusion is that even God does not protect the weak!!

In the same measure, I have also come across another saying that defines a powerful person. Its not about just physical power or authoritative power or money but a person with enthusiasm is a powerful person. There is nothing as powerful as enthusiasm.

उत्साहो बलवानार्य नास्त्युत साहात परम बलम!!
Utsaaho balavaanaarya nastyutsaahat param balam!

Now if we try to reconcile both the arguments - on the one hand the most evolved things in nature are frail in nature and on the other hand that the nature through its social behavior would eliminate the weak and helps the strong, then are we not left with contradictions?

I agree that this is not as complicated as we sometimes encounter "Headache - But nothing" situations from our wife / girlfriend. :) But, I still don't have an answer to solve this contradiction but would certainly say that the non-dual yet bipolar quality of nature seems to balance all such contradictions very finely and it seems that this dynamic interplay would appear to vanish as we evolve in our mental plane. Or so they say.

Lets just wish that we evolve ourselves to see the truth above such apparent contradictions.  

Yours enthusiastically
Happy reading!

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