I wonder why there is so widespread adoption for anything foreign and apathy for local. Why are we so ignorant or ashamed of our own culture and heritage?
Last week I went to Concorde Manhattan, an apartment complex in Bangalore. They project had 10 towers each named after a great person. Unfortunately none of the names were Indians.
Outside Bollywood & cricket, almost all celebrities became widely popular first abroad then domestically (rather than the expected other way around). Many products carry a tag “export quality” signifying that produce for the local market is inherently inferior. Even traditional Indian practices and philosophies gained relevance abroad before we Indians even understood its value. No wonder even today we use the western names which has ‘a’ attached towards the end of Yoga, Ayurveda etc. rather than the original Indian name. I could come up 2 explanations for this phenomenon:
Firstly, we give more weight to other’s reactions/endorsement rather than to our own internal judgment. Constantly seeking outside for ‘pat on the back’ and morale boost questions the accuracy of our own thoughts, beliefs and convictions. Also it increases the propensity to focus on flashy pursuits with visible short term results rather than undertake years of hardwork and chase one’s dream. How difficult is it to set up a high targets and chase one dream. Why is it that everybody I know has taken important decisions solely based on the criteria “log kya kehenge” (what will people say?)
Secondly we look at the wrapper more than we look at the product. Hence many jewels were discarded only because they were encrusted. Somebody from abroad picked these up, polished them and resold the back… however majority of these jewels still languish in the realms of dirt. Indian handicrafts might be prized possessions internationally but Indian artisans and craftsmen lead a life of penury. An average Indian might know names of a dozen international artists, but hardly any Indian painter or sculptor.
I am not sure which one of the 2 reason is dominant, but it surely calls for a rectification. The nation with 1/6 of the humanity will only breed bright mediocre and not the exceptional genius.