Friday, April 28, 2017

An Essay on Discipline

These days there is a lot of talk about discipline having gone down, and indiscipline being rampant in every sphere of life. This is very true but, let us quite clearly understand what discipline really means. Discipline is in essence, the training of the mind to obey instructions. In the bygone days, this training of the mind to obey was found in all people and in every sphere of functioning but to-day it is missing everywhere. Let us now analyze why this has happened and can we find any solution for it, or consider it a lost cause?

I feel that the reason is mainly in our education. It is a wonder but true that we have started believing that we being intellectuals, need no rules to be laid down for us, and do not need any discipline. The obvious and simple result is that our country today is a picture of absolute indiscipline. This is because we think that since we are educated we can do what we know or feel is correct We are educated. modem and a lot more but when every so called educated person does what he/she thinks is correct, the outcome is chaos. This is a very unhappy misnomer that has crept up in our attitudes that, we do not need to obey or obedience is foolish, or still further we do not need any rules and we need not follow anyone.

We have to understand that all the confusion and chaos we see everywhere is the result of a simple thing-lack of discipline. A society that is really educated, in the true sense, must be a society that is absolutely obedient and thereby absolutely disciplined. However, our education has inculcated this awkward feeling within us, and, brought us to the lowest ever level of discipline. Let us realize how much educated we are if we lack discipline. We are just as undisciplined animals of the jungle, and we can never achieve any progress till we attain a high standard of discipline.

To look for indiscipline now let us move out on to the roads first. For one thing, just let us consider what the signal lights are fixed for. They are there to tell us to go when the green light comes but we, the modern and educated people think that we know better than these lights, and here we jump the red light. Now, just before the red light, there is a row of white lines and the word STOP written in bold letters, but again, disobedient as we are, we always cross the STOP mark and then stand in the middle of road. What does this show about us?

It very clearly indicates that, no matter how small an instruction is given to us we are here to flout it. Is this what we understand about modernity, education and freedom? From the road, let us go to an office. If the time for office 10'0' clock it will never start functioning at least before 11'0' clock. Besides, inside the office also, there is no work seen as the boss is not yet in. This shows we do not work because we have to work or that we are supposed to work, or because we are being paid for working, but we work only when there is someone to see us work, or scold us for not working. Is this what discipline is all about?

Back home, we see the children doing what each one wants to. These children cannot be cowed down to any norms but they have their own ways of thinking and applying their minds.

In the schools, colleges and Universities, we see a wonderful scenario of absolute disobedience and lack of discipline. Let us now analyze why we have just got to be indiscipline I personally feel that this is all because we have developed in us very wrong notions of education and freedom and modernity. It appears that we believe that being able to do what an individual wants to do at any time, is the true measure of freedom. This may be quite true but, to a very limited extent. For, if we all start doing what each one of us wants to do at any given time we will land us in a state of utter confusion and chaos. This is exactly what has happened to us today. We have reached the zenith of chaos in every sphere of life.

Rules and regulations are made for good governance of any institution, big or small. We do not in any way become small by obeying any rules. It is discipline that can work wonders with any nation. But we have degenerated to such an extent that, to-day the right hand does not know what the left hand is doing. This is because we seem to believe that each hand has a right to do what it wants, and also a right to its own privacy. This I daresay is taking freedom too far. Such gross indiscipline can take or is rather taking our country to the gates of hell. Indiscipline in a society can break it into smithereens and this is exactly what is happening.

Let us take a new look at our attitudes to discipline. We should remember that discipline makes a home, it makes a society, and it is just this magic that makes a nation. By practicing discipline, we do not become slaves but we are just being good citizens, the pride of the nation. Let us take a pledge to develop in us the great force that is discipline. It is only this force that can bring us back to the old traditional cultural level which has been lost somewhere on our way in search of freedom. At one time, we seemed to have an inbuilt system of obedience. Let us look for that inbuilt mechanism of obedience, and I am sure we will not be far from excelling in every field of existence.