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'Duty to self' , suggested addition to "The Peoples' Mainfesto"




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Postings not related to the writing of the Manifesto or policy chapters
are likely to be summarily rejected. Thanks for your understanding. IPI
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Dear friends,

First of all let me clarify that I am new to 'Indiapolicy' and may =
therefore be raising issues which have already been debated and =
'thrashed out' in the past. I seek your indulgence on this count.
Also, let me congratulate all those who have put in such a lot of time, =
thought and effort in this initiative. I have read 'The Peoples' =
Manifesto' and must congratulate all those involved in  its drafting for =
the clarity of vision and purpose demonstrated in it.
I would like to share my views on some of the points raised in the =
manifesto. In this first mail I wish to discuss the following paragraph, =
( ' The Free Citizen, The Fair Society. A Free Citizen's Declaration of =
Personal Sovereignty' ) :-

Our existence is separate
      The chain of events leading to my birth, essentially unrelated in =
any way to the political boundaries that I see today, places me in the =
environs of a particular society, to which I am related essentially =
through my parents. But ultimately, I am an independent link of the =
chain, that will one day break away like a leaf falling from the tree, =
existing today for reasons best defined by me and understood by me, =
alone. I alone can actually feel pain when I nick myself, not my nation, =
nor even my family. I alone can think for myself. Not my nation, nor =
even my family.

          Here, I think that we would do well to realize that although =
we exist as individuals, separately, yet, most of the things in our =
lives are not really in our hands. No individual is absolutely free or =
independent. Even his existence, in his birth or demise, is not in his =
hands. And even when he exists, most of his life, his bodily functions, =
his thought processes are not in his total control.

         I have found that if one views his body as something which has =
been 'lent' to him for a certain period of time, to be made best use of =
while he exists, then he is better geared to face some of the physical =
and mental adversity which he inevitably faces during the course of his =
life on earth. Often, people view the body as their own, something which =
can be used (?and abused) at will. They ignore illness with the result =
that curable tumours become inoperable cancers and fever manifests as =
rampant infection, all because they did not treat their body with the =
respect it deserved. =20

       I would like this obligation of an individual to his own self,  =
finding place in the manifesto by making the following addition to the =
paragraph quoted above :-

      " However, I do realize, that this body which has been bestowed =
upon me, and on which I have not been granted absolute control, demands =
respect and confers upon me the obligation that I look after it in the =
best possible manner, so as to make the best use of it in the time =
allotted to me for the purpose. I shall also be similarly obliged =
towards my children's welfare till such time as they are adults, capable =
of looking after themselves."

Anil Shukla.

(anilshukla@vsnl.com)


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