Action, Not Birth, Determines Caste – Religion, Politics & Management

I was very pleased with the episodes of Mahabharat this week (Mahabharat 6 & 10 Sep MBC1). There were important lessons and teachings in each episodes. Given the recent uproar created by the infamous l’Express article on castes use in politics, I think it’s important that everyone understands that even in the times of Mahabharat (3000 years ago or so), it was accepted that people can determine their caste, by the job they do: their actions.

Karan told his father that he wants to become a warrior, a Kshatriya, changing from his father’s Shudra job of being charioteer. He will succeed in becoming a great warrior later in the series.

Another good lesson comes from Mama Shakuni to Duryodhan. Some people associate ‘Divide and rule‘ philosophy to colonial English, when the British East India Company used the divisions of small kingdoms in India to their advantage into conquering the big India. However, Shakuni gives the same advice over 3o00 years ago to his nephew. He mentions that together the Pandavas are stronger than he is, but one-on-one, Duryodhan can beat them.

Shakuni suggests that apart from the virtues, conspiracy can prove useful in battle. When the enemy is stronger that you are, you must first identify what your strengths are. Then identify the weaknesses of the enemy so that you can strike there. That’s how Duryodhan is able to beat Bheem by using the latters eating habit. Compare with the SW of SWOT analysis in Management…

Now I think that the politicians in Mauritius are really preaching unité national. After all, they are the models themselves, making coalitions, networks. Each party comprises of cross-religion and castes members. However, for the orthodox people who still vote on castes, they use a divide and rule approach, where it is easier to manage small blocks of the voters, compared to a large group. That’s also the approach in conventional management, where big companies (e.g. GML, Rogers..) have created specialised small firms to handle different activities…

Mauritians do work together well, at least, the youngsters do. I do, my friends from other religions do as well. We accept each other’s cultural differences, and learn the good things from each other, as well pointing the bad sides. E.g. women oppression in distorted ideas from Hinduism and Islam. Let’s hope that the current generation is stronger than the few of us who are still cultivate caste-communial differences negatively…

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