Monday, July 22, 2024

Intellectual Colonialism: An Analysis of Pakistan and India 

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The civilization of Bharat was cleaved into two nations India and Pakistan. This partition was a direct result of the divisive politics of the British. The continued enmity between the two countries is the fruit of the tree planted by the British Powers. Another remnant of Bharat’s past as a slave nation is Intellectual colonialism. This subtle yet devastating after-effect of slavery is often underestimated in its impact.

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Intellectual Colonialism has changed the trajectory of both Pakistan and India. What is Intellectual Colonialism? What are its ramifications for both countries? How can Bharat, that is India, overcome this phenomenon to assert its unique intellectual and cultural identities?

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What is Intellectual Colonialism for Bharat? 

Intellectual colonialism denotes the supremacy of Western ideologies, paradigms, and knowledge systems over indigenous cultures and traditions. The superimposition of Western ideals in various aspects of life is a symptom of this social disease. The preference for Western languages and education models over Gurukuls, transference of Vedic knowledge, and rejection of Sanskrit and mother tongue are a consequence of Intellectual Colonialism in Bharat.

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When a reader prefers the West’s outlook over an Indian outlook on news and media, it denotes his acceptance of the West’s so-called supremacy. The preference for fair skin, the emulation of the West’s casual relation between men and women, and the rejection of classical music and dance over discos all proclaim the West’s dominance of the minds of Indians. The rush for the ‘White Man’s’ approval and servile attitude toward degrees from the institutes of the West prove the mental slavery of Bharat and its people. While formal colonial rule is over in Bharat, its legacy of Intellectual colonialism still rules Bharat even after its formal independence.

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Does Pakistan also Suffer from this Disease?

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In Pakistan, intellectual colonialism manifests in their subservient attitude toward all things related to the West. Additionally, their fanatical approach to religion is a mere change of masters for them. Their adoption of a more rigid interpretation of Islam post-independence to seek validity in the Islamic world is also a form of Intellectual colonialism. Their preference for fair skin and well-spoken English is a manifestation of Intellectual Colonialism.

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Pakistan’s obsession with recognition from European Nations and the US shows its need for verification in the eyes of these powers. They vacillate between trying to please their Islamic masters and trying to please the West.

The current confused state of Pakistan is partly due to the complete mental shutdown due to its contradictory subservience to the hard-core Muslim narrative and the West’s pseudo-modernity.

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The rejection of local dialects in preference of Urdu is a symptom of this devastating virus. The need for validation from the West in the form of ranking on their lists for news, media, progress, etc. is a fallout of this mindset. The collapsing nation of Pakistan shall blame India for its decline, however, the truth is that its inability to hold on to its indigenous ideology is the true cause of its current state.  

How can Bharat overcome Intellectual Colonialism?

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  1. Promote Indigenous Languages: Emphasizing mother tongues and Sanskrit languages in formal education, literature, and media can help Bharat rekindle its cultural identity.
  2. Decolonize Education: Ridding the education systems of the influence of its erstwhile masters and their ideology can be the first step to decolonizing Bharat’s intellect. Overhauling the education system and giving indigenous histories, philosophies, and arts their rightful place in India’s Education system can help remove this subtle stain on Bharat’s mindset.
  3. Encourage Critical Thinking: Encouraging critical thinking and intellectual curiosity in the people of Bharat will help Bharatiya to reinterpret ideological paradigms within India’s cultural contexts.
  4. Support Indigenous Knowledge: Recognizing and supporting traditional knowledge systems deeply rooted in local cultures, such as Ayurveda, Vedic Mathematics, etc. can provide a sense of balance in the intellectual growth of Bharat’s youth.
  5. Media Diversity: Promoting indigenous voices and stories to receive equitable representation in mainstream media can foster a sense of cultural pride in the people of Bharat.

In Summation

Intellectual colonialism continues to influence the identity and development of Pakistan and India equally. However, by embracing their cultural richness, promoting indigenous languages, and encouraging critical thinking, Bharat can overcome this devastating disease. The concerted efforts of the government, the social reformers, the media, and the society can help Bharat re-assert its unique intellectual and cultural heritage in the minds of its youth. Such initiatives will prevent Bharat from facing the low levels of depravity that is the reality of Pakistan. Thus, ensuring a continuance of millennia-old traditions and knowledge is vital for the secure future of Bharat and its people.

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