0 A tale of muscle power and the knowledge

The word “knowledge” keeps mystifying me intermittently. Because, “knowledge” and “facts” are two important words with all attributes having independent and mutually exclusive courses. The knowledge that we posses are instilled into our entourage with the opinions of few people: mostly the authors. It is almost impossible to witness the facts and then build a knowledge base on top of it. Therefore, I am an ardent believer and practitioner that knowledge gained by travelling is most authentic one. In fact, I assumed a pen name aadi yayavar आदि यायावर (means ancient traveler/wanderer) for my writings in my mother tongue मैथिली. Other forms of knowledge are merely the opinion of someone else. There is nothing wrong in the opinions of others as long as integrity of authorship is maintained.  The biggest question is: Is it possible for authors to maintain integrity and always write facts? 

A recent incident forced me to rethink on this subject. Sometime back I was talking to one of my old classmate of my village school. We were talking about our common acquaintance whose heroic act of eliminating local terror was being treated as an act of Hitler. My friend was taking pride in glorifying the way he managed it at his will. It was rather a Robinhood style of work but I was wondering about the relevance of Hitler. Momentarily, I could not stop myself realizing that he had a strong opinion that Hitler was indeed a hero. Until my undergraduate, I was also a votary of similar opinion about Hitler and thanks should go to our class-7th text book. In our textbook the act of Hitler was glorified. His barbaric approach was never highlighted and in our young mind Hitler was established himself as a hero. It is true that the text books of 20th century were influenced by the emotional state of mind of authors for Indian struggle for independence and hence some kinds of emotions are justified in the text books. It was also true that Hitler helped India against the British. So he deserves all praises as a friend of India. However, there is a huge difference between a friend and a hero; they don’t go hand in hand. 

Government has always advantages of promoting their individual schools of thoughts through the text books. Young minds are too tender to realize the real motive and to develop the politico-religious-economic view of the government: the socialistic governments are ought to avoid capitalistic ideas. Like I did today, often people realize at later stage of life that everything written in textbook are not absolutely right. However, there is another question: whether anything written anywhere in the world represent the facts? Or whether facts are really able to survive in this world? 

It opens up another question why would a ruler allow a particular historian to write against him. Why would not a ruler destroy all facts written against him? The history written in modern time was actually written by historians of Victorian era. So were those historians maintained high degree of integrity in revealing the facts or they just wrote what Queen wanted them to write. 

It reminds me another incidence that I come across recently to realize that this problem is not limited to history only. This is regarding Mr. Henry Hindley who invented the non-pendulum clock. In that time it was very difficult for the sailors to maintain uniform view of a timescale in the ship because pendulum clocks were not working properly due to the massive vibration in the ship. The fraternity of the scientists was challenged by the royal family to design such a clock that could still work in voyages.  All scientist of the Royal Society failed to invent such a clock. It was Mr Henry, a carpenter by a profession invented the clock of modern era which could withstand the vibration of ocean and still work without getting deviated. Mr. Henry had to prove it multiple times in real life voyages from England to West Indies. However, Royal Society was not ready to accept it readily. Mr. Henry and his next generation had to fight the legal battles for almost 60 years. It took consistent fighting of two generations of Henry family to get his invention recognized by Royal Society.

Everyone would not have a matching will power like Henry. Many inventions would not have got recognition. It means, so many of them must have been buried or would have been re-invented at later point of time. What we see today are merely the blessings of the royal families. 

I have talked about "the history" and "the science". Literature and other form of knowledge would have met the same fate. It is a blot on the civilized society.

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