Naga society needs a new kind of confidence


Witoubou Newmai


By all conventional signs in the context of Naga society, it has become a monotonous affair to see endless flow of ‘advice’ from newspaper commentators on varied subjects. For years now, many people have been comparing newspaper commentators with that tea boy who has ‘advice’ for everybody, from cricketers to politicians, but he himself is not able to make good tea.


But take this also into account that, it is a complete absurdity to expect even good coaches to play like players. A club’s performance also depends on how good is the reflection between the players and the retinue of coaches. Such is the rudiment of any people’s movement, also.


As we all know, commentators are rendering a two-way-traffic service by mirroring the state of affairs between the ‘powers-that-be’ and the people, and in the process, this service can be a recourse for both sides. However, in our society where the culture of laying importance to street news is still vibrant, the service of the newspaper commentators is oblivious. Sadly, this state of attitude has been a major impediment to the growth of our society.


Another way of helping in the growth of our society is, the culture of lecture, memorial, foundation or any sort, ought to be encouraged and appreciated. Such measures will address the imbalance where our society tilts heavily towards the ribbon cutting chief guests or ‘VIP’ studded affair programmes.


Our society is a good ‘copier’ of anything, but the whole problem lies with our inability to ‘paste’ the values. It is time we learn to ‘copy’ values and also learn the craft of ‘pasting’ them. It is also time we realize that, our streets are filled with easy pasting ‘hollow stuff’ while our ‘hearths and cores’ are left unattended for too long in want of values. It is time we check the health of our ‘hearths and cores’ so as to regain our collective confidence.


The Naga society “needs a new kind of confidence, a confidence which is reflective, thoughtful and strategic” (Shiv Visvanathan’s words in quotation). This is part of the universal ideals.


However troubling the reality of the situation is, the Naga society cannot afford to ignore these universal ideals. Or, not doing so would mean deviating from our primary responsibility.


As commented few months ago in this column, a society which does not value certain universal ideals cannot see a clear notion about what a people’s movement requires. To achieve this level, we need to believe in an ethical society as for a society where the moral landscape is too artificial and devastated, ethics become insignificant.


It was also commented earlier here in this column that, of late, it has become quite vivid that a discussion such as this brings ‘collective monotony’. Even to think of investing efforts to understand it is being ridiculed. However, one cannot help but to go on with this simple and tediously repetitive comment. This ritual is to help ‘paste’ values in the Naga ‘hearths and cores’.