Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Who or What Inspires Us?

LinkedIn sends me a mail to get inspired by the most followed Influencers. I go through the list and see the names of a few bigwigs and smile. Oh well, now are they going to dictate who should inspire me? :)

Are we supposed to be inspired by only folks in the rat race and who've made huge sums of money judging by the list? Social media does have a way of pandering to people's egos and hyping things up to such an extent that you start to believe in it. However, if you delve a bit, you will find that it's all about visibility and often the achievements are hollow and there is no real depth or quality to it.

Am I supposed to be admiring Ambani or Mallya for their ill gotten wealth and ways of flaunting it through monstrosities like Antilla and yachts and high flying calendars even in cases where their employees have not been paid for months while they live the high life or the majority of people in our nation live in dire poverty? It's not in their business interest after all to part with their wealth especially when there are loopholes in the system where they can avoid payouts to those who deserve it. Isn't it the job of the government to look after the welfare of its citizens? Why should these big folks care as long as their names make it to the richie rich list every year?

It's like the music channels these days that keep playing such horrendous music till it's drilled into your senses and you start believing that it's top of the charts although the lyrics make no sense or the music is plagiarized from another popular number and at times even outright non-melodious. Or those endless movie promotions that keep being replayed on television channels and celebrities on social networking sites who promote it even though it may be the crappiest movie ever made and you go and watch based on their feedback and once you do, you realize that it was a huge mistake. After all, in these times it's more of driving up a hype, ass-licking, and doing favors for people rather than honest and quality feedback.

It's like I shout out all your so-called achievements from the rooftop and you do the same for mine. Or was it you scratch my back and I'll scratch your's? :) Oh well, these days you don't even have to shout from rooftops; all you need to do is broadcast it across social networking sites and there you go, it's creating a  breed of self-obsessed, attention-seeking, narcissistic individuals. This attention-seeking is like a drug and at times often promotes mediocrity and cheating one's way to so-called success like all those voting contests that you come across. The more the votes, and that is what determines the outcome of one's success. And sorry, you may send me repeated requests but am still not going to vote for anyone's child on any social networking site. I wouldn't know what to judge and isn't it unfair on some other deserving candidates whoever they are just because I am an incompetent judge? :P So hate me but still not voting.

I watch the news and see more self-promotions happening even in the aftermath of the Uttarakhand tragedy. The army, locals, NGO's and some extraordinary humans doing some amazing work and helping those affected without shouting it out from the rooftops and there you have our politicians squabbling and boasting about flagging off relief material when isn't it their duty as public servants to ensure the welfare of the citizens? Do they need to spend funds that could be used in rehabilitation work in running large newspaper ads promoting the so-called relief work that their leaders are engaging in?  And then you get to know that the stuff flagged off is rotten or hasn't even reached the folks who require it as the trucks are still stuck in some other state. Politicians have ceased to surprise me these days with their insensitive and incompetent ways.

Back to influencers, even though I do admire some of the famous ones such as Bill Gates, Warren Buffet, Azim Premji, and the Tatas for all their charitable contributions, it's still my low-profile colleagues, friends, acquaintances, and some extraordinary strangers who I've met that amaze and inspire me for their large hearts with so less resources.

Ordinary folks who are wealthy in their thoughts and deeds and who are making a huge difference to the lives of others every day. The ones who teach impoverished kids for free, undertake campaigns and promotions to provide them access to free education, school kits etc, the ones who work with orphanages and differently abled people, the folks who help slum dwellers day in and day out, those friends who help the homeless, and women who have been violated and abused, striving against all odds despite having access to limited funds or welfare. At times they even face a deep risk to their lives by helping others and yet that does not deter them from their chosen path.

Those nameless faceless folks who shy away from the limelight and public praise. They may be your neighbor, colleague, friend, acquaintance but each day they tirelessly thrive to help others. I do know that we live in times where the shallow world of social media and the material wealth folks accumulate will continue to dictate who the achievers are and who we should admire, but for me it's these folks who quietly go about changing lives without a care for rewards or praise who are the real heroes!

1 comment:

oruthuli said...

World notices small deeds/words of mighty/influential people and avoids the mighty deeds/works of small people. This is the nature of the world. Till this behaviour of the world changes, there is less chance for the actual workers to be acknowledged. :)