To criticize a critic

4 May

One day I was thinking, the fact that I indulged in this is in itself a surprise, soon you will understand why I say so, and I suddenly realized that I don’t think at all. Not the fact that I can’t, just that I don’t. And I realized that I am not the only one, most of the world has actually stopped thinking, we all have let our minds become dependent. Dependent on a very small minority called experts, critics, whatever name you might to give them.

We blindly believe what ever they say, without question, without judgement, without thinking, their word is the gospel truth that we follow and act upon blindly.

What is the basis of our trust?

Because they are experts?

Because we believe they are experts?

And who makes them the expert?

It really doesn’t matter whether they are, or they are not. The question really is, what role are they supposed to play in our lives?

Now the easy answer would be to say that they act as filters that protect us from the unwanted, add value to our time and effort, help us identify and point out to us what will be beneficial to us, which otherwise we might have missed or lost time on something else which is far irrelevant in comparison. They are like brands, which save us effort, bring consistency and add convenience to our lives; lives where the most expensive commodity is time.

But the reality is that they control our minds.

Critics today define our thinking.

They decide fo us.

And by deciding our thinking, they define our actions.

Critics have become the creators of the future.

This is the reality, while on the other hand we also talk about free will and individuality.

This to me sounds like an oxymoron.

When we are actually behaving in a manner which someone else is dictating where is individualism,where is free will?

Isn’t it actually herd mentality? Mentality devoid of any thinking?

There is another issue.

Critics or so called experts end of the day pass judgements, and all judgements are always confined within certain acceptable boundaries. Boundary within which all judgements are passed. Boundaries of right and wrong. Everything eventally gets institutionalized, benchmarks are established, touchstones of creativity, good and bad, and everything that comes after is pegged against these hallmarks of quality, so you can create something better than the old or worse than the old, yet always in someway similar to the old, never different from the existing. New would always be rejected, met with disdain,criticized because it cannot be judged. Because on what basis would one say its good or bad, there are no parallels for judgement. Because the truth is it can be good but equal chances are it can be bad too. On what basis would a critic stick his neck out? They are not soothsayers, they are not visionaries, they are the guardians.

Guardians of what exists not what can.

Now last I remember, creation always have been done by individuals and not institutions. Progress happens when the acceptable is challenged by an individual.  Individuals think of new, institutions protect the existing. 

Though the worst case scenario would be when these critics start believing that they are the harbingers of the future and not just gatekeepers and start behaving like dictators by pushing their thoughts into our heads, and for all you know they could be pushing the rubbish and rejecting the good. They do not have a right to make that judgement only individuals have to decide their life and make their own choices. That individual is no one but you and I.

So today, when we are rejecting to indulge in this effort and becoming slaves to this small clique, where does the hope lie?

As of today, today is today and tomorrow is also today.

If I were you, I would definitely read, see, do what the critics suggest, that would help me understand the boundaries of the current but in addition I would actually  spend more time and effort on what the critics reject.

Because in that rejection, in that hubris, lies the future.


One Response to “To criticize a critic”

  1. John Doe May 10, 2010 at 12:48 pm #


    i was also wondering – there are times and situations where we CANNOT think.

    example if someone says that kashmir should go to pakistan. i am not going to respond to that statement as a thinking indivisual. rather i react as an indian and the automatic knee jerk reaction is ‘NO WAY!”

    yes i might give valid logical reasons to support the view, but the real reaction is not a result of thought but instinct.

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