Dr. Asangba Tzüdir
The Need for a Process of Informed Discussion
In an age where the flow of information defines our times, the ever active social media have made the flow of news and information faster. Various forms of news and information are being shared through this medium that social media users can be classed as being know-all. On the information front, not only does it casts a shadow of doubt on its credibility but also negates the status of being know-all. Moreover, know-all is not the same as being well-informed. But on the whole, a greater damage is done to the news and information beyond social media news and information. Within the diversion to social media news for a good section of people, another diversion happens whereby the space for critical thinking which is integral to creating a process of well-informed discussion is more often left ignored. This is one way through which the vast ‘cultures’ and ‘histories of knowledge’, so also ‘knowledge of cultures’ in context, gets forgotten and lost, leave aside the ‘unknown’ which in actuality is a necessary connective between the distant past and the present.
Within this strain, and of different worlds and worldviews, Naga Society today, with all the confronting issues at hand in almost every domain of human activity, be it historical, cultural, political, religion etc., is in dire need of having well-informed discussion towards envisaging a collective future. The lack of it has only brought Nagas to such a critical juncture where a way forward towards a collective is much desired. In many ways, the world has gotten more ‘attractively intoxicating’ that rather than enabling the search for a collective, a generational bracketing so also varied interests have set in causing uprooting followed by emergence of multiplicity of identities. A blunt question yet in perspective, being the search for the ‘roots of our common belongingness’ and the direction towards which it should be nurtured and allowed to grow.
Within this trajectory, all the domains of human activity comes into play, and that a journey of common hope, beliefs and aspirations only can bring all the domains together towards human flourishing and also charting a shared future. Will 2019 be any different? Will it witness a shift towards envisioning a collective Naga future? To put this in motion, not just dialogue but a culture of well-informed discussion need to start happening within a common table centered on the collectivity. It is the lack of it that has created so many trajectories with no meeting point. Nagas also need to strike a balance between flexibility and rigidity while seeking and striking the common chord. It also requires coming out of ‘selfishness’ and out of one’s comfortably nestled zones. Only then can Nagas place themselves within the context of the larger identity struggle.
For now, such a conceived dream of the collective hope in order to struggle for a shared future is still waiting to be born. Yet, the journey needs to get translated to reality. Time has come and now is the opportune time to break free from the shackles and allow the birth of the dream, and where every Naga – young and old in one accord will rejoice in the collective. Time to listen to one another and devise strategic action plans through a process of well-informed discussion while taking every Naga on board especially the younger generation that finds lost in their intoxicating World.
Hope this New Year which calls for greater responsibility from all Nagas see the creation of processes towards the struggle for the Naga collective.
(Dr. Asangba Tzudir contributes a weekly guest editorial to
The Morung Express. Comments can be mailed to email@example.com)