By Celin Thomas
Do events like rape, molestation shock your conscience? Are your scared to venture out in the dark or even in the day time? Well then you are not alone to feel this way. Statistics show, sexual violence is essentially committed by those whom the victim/survivor may have already known. Does this statistics bother you? Can you trust your male friend, male colleague, brother, cousin or even your father?
Where to begin and how to end this write up wasn’t really the issue, the point I really wish to make requires whole lot of clarity in terms of cultural and societal values which we need to assess and re-assess keeping in perspective our existing ethics & morale. After the 16th December 2012 tragedy in our national capital that brought the youth of several cities on streets across India and globally condemning the ghastly act. I felt terrified and felt that I should talk about this, get myself heard to at least my friends and know what they think and how they feel.
I had a fruitful discussion with my fellow academic friends…
And they were of an opinion which made a lot of sense. The world is changing and perhaps a little too fast for patriarchal minds & they’re venting their frustrations through chauvinism and masochistic means. They’re certainly not on the lookout for pleasure, as sexual pleasure is mutually enjoyed but rape is against ones’ will. Believe it or not it is a crime against every order in the world as it is a forced act of violence that breaches the very fabric that brings life into this planet.
If the violators think they’re making a point, then they’re far too short sighted. Life cannot proliferate amidst violence; only death and sadness surrounds it and breeds only negativity and more evil. Remember like begets like. This is a statement that I studied being a student of natural sciences and evolution. It doesn’t surprise me that there is so much violence in this world, and you know why? Because it is anger & envy that is breeding violence into the next generation also.
So violence is breeding more violence?
To explain the rise in reports of violence against women off lately, will need one to understand evolution of humans as animals and thence into social beings living in communities called society. So the answer to this kind of targeted gender based violence lies in understanding evolution, genetics, sociology, psychology and anthropology.
These crimes have raised many questions, one which I’m asking too, have we evolved as a society? A woman in a certain century who was smarter than her male contemporary and questioned the very ethos of the community was hunted down as a witch; today the same woman is raped. The type of crime is perhaps changing but the root problem is the same; a section of society comprising of males and females who simply cannot accept change.
And what is the change we are talking about here?
Change is when a woman gets educated, change is when a woman wants a career, change is when a woman has ambition, change when a woman says NO to a man when she turns down a proposal (marriage, love or even sexual advances).
Darwin once said it is not the strongest or the smartest that have chance to survive but the ones with the ability to adapt. I think as society is ever evolving and progressing, every person who claims to be part of the society or benefits from society needs to change and adapt as per the circumstances also.
So the women have evolved from their traditional homebody roles to championing sports, entertainment, literature and even the corporate world; but there are many roadblocks and hassles for them to become what they would dream to be or aspire to become. Heinous crimes like rape, murder, acid attacks, and molestation- tend to be few of those roadblocks. After years of efforts and lobbying when some parents have become liberal enough to let their daughters go to school and even graduate will now think twice before even sending them out of home to bring groceries let alone leaving them to pursue their ambitions and goals.
The world is generally intolerant of a progressive woman….
And why do I make such a Profound Statement. Well over the years women around the globe have been objectified and are still being considered objects of pleasure and gratification. If she gets educated and starts earning, she will shy away from regular responsibilities of a homemaker, wife, not have kids and pursue goals and add to the existing competition to men in the workforce. An educated woman would demand for an evolved, liberal man as a life partner and let’s face it people, how many men are liberal, secure, educated and evolved?
The men who violate women come with a typical mindset like, women are weak physically, she will not complain to anyone as she will be ashamed, her parents will not accept her back, society will not accept a raped woman, she won’t get another man, etc. most of it displays a sadistic, masochistic mentality that emerges essentially in a male who has been raised in a family that has patriarchal values, where women have been suppressed, violated and treated badly. So that is the learning to he takes with him all through his life. Some of these men end up in jail and most of them end up torturing women who enter their lives as wives and daughters.
Surviving a sexual crime is just one battle of survival that a woman has to face; her battle continues throughout her life when she has to face an intolerant society, insensitive family & friends and a hopeless justice system.
Defining our approach
Policy level changes along with legal amendments are must but they are just the beginning; the real change is required in the mindset of people. Lets not propagate negativity or such thinking amongst people that they would want to hurt or damage someone completely. It is imperative that our society accepts the role and contribution of women and strive hard to give them dignity, equal status and honour.
It is easier to put restrictions on women like don’t go late in the night, don’t take up night shift jobs, don’t study in a different city, etc. but how will this help and in which way? The real problem is not in the woman who may become a victim, the real problem is elsewhere and the diagnosis and treatment is being administered on someone else. How will such an approach really change thinking and reduce crime rates.
Women contribute to the national economy, they are the caretakers, they bind a family together, women teach you to love and be sensitive which true qualities of a leader as well. And if she asks for a safer road, transport, workplace and school to be with her family and to prosper in life- is that really too much that she is asking for? I still do not have enough solutions to the persisting problems of violence against women. But atleast I don’t wish to be amongst those who give a cold shoulder to such events or simply turn a blind eye. What you wish to do with the understanding you develop after reading all of this is also important? I hope even if you don’t have solutions you may at least have some questions and would start thinking in what way these tragic events affect you.
Will now hop into a bus? Will you take an auto in a lonely street? Will you walk down a road after seven if it doesn’t have street lights on?
By Celin Thomas
So does the nature of love change? Its a question I’m sure many would ask nowadays. And why would they ask? Many reasons; insecurity, lack of love, unable to love themselves or others, experiencing change in an assumed stable relationship.
Yes, we are humans- full of flaws with a divine right to err. And we hurt people in the process, battle egos and gnash teeth even in the name of love. Some say its worth it. I ‘d think its better to fight for something that gives you joy than chase something that the world thinks is comfortable.
Anything you want or desire may not always be easy to come by and if it has come easily to you it may slip just as swiftly without your knowledge. Scary but true. The worst thing that affects our judgement is the lack of self-knowledge, which means we aren’t really sure of what we really want. Believe me that can confuse you to such an extent that you would blindly follow any one who you think is more confident than you. If something is going right in their lives doesn’t mean it’ll be the same for you as well.
So what do you do? Gain clarity of what you want in life. Understand self better, imbibe good qualities only then you’ll know what will suit you and what wouldn’t. If you know yourself then others will not dump their lame ass or smart ass opinions on you and mislead you elsewhere.
Be prepared life takes turns and you may not be ready for what is lined up ahead, so don’t be scared…keep on moving. But don’t be adamant about things and think that people are predictable as per your judgement, they’ll change too as you evolve.
As you can be in and out of love so can they. So what will happen then? Make yourself strong and secure, work on self coz that is all you can actually do as that is all that is in your control. You cant really control people and situations but you can certainly control your behavior, your reaction to such things thrown at you.
But I still strongly believe that ‘The Nature of Love doesn’t change, but over a period of time its expression evolves’. And when the expression changes, we think that the person doesn’t love us anymore. We feel something for somebody today and may not feel the same way about them; its nothing to be scared or to be ashamed of. You’re human and you evolve and so do your expressions.
Have you ever noticed babies expressing love and unconditional affection to their parents and that same baby grows into an adult and though the love is still there; its expression has evolved. So the baby who gave warmth through smiles, hugs & kisses now brings you warm food, cars, flats and many more materialistic things that will make your life comfortable- your baby has grown and has found another way to express his/her emotions.
We have to be ready for change all the time. Whether it is in the professional or personal arena of our lives, so that when the winds of change come they do not destroy us but carry us to a renewed purpose in life.
By Celin Thomas
So I have been thinking of lately a lot on what an insecure leader can do? And why, perhaps when you read through the post you’ll figure it out yourself. So before you can know what an insecure leader can do; you first need to identify him and diagnose his impacts to the organisation’s regular functioning. Or else, you’ll pin point just about anybody that you detest simply coz you cant get along with.
An insecure leader is not just your superior, maybe somebody else’ superior, owner of the company, basically anybody you report to.
Lets hope this article doesn’t do me much damage but rather helps you’all…
Identifying and diagnosing an insecure leader
Pride or arrogance, bad temper, impatience, unnecessary sarcasm, back biting, taking your work and giving it to others, subtle torture by ignoring you, not talking to you, picking on you, humiliating you in front of everyone at work or just about anywhere- are few outstanding traits of an insecure leader.
All that you may have confided in him or her will be used against you more on a public platform. They keep taunting you, keep pestering you with jobs that are not part of your profile or KRA/KPI. Try to burden you with work so that you wont have time to complaint or even have a casual conversation with people around you. Eventually the fact that you don’t talk to people around you, will also be used against you- it’ll be shown that you’re not a team player and you don’t engage with other team members.
Damage that an insecure leader could do
- You may quit your job in a fit of rage
- You’ll fight within your team as the job profiles are conflicted without even realizing somebody is actually playing you
- Use your secrets against you (whatever maybe the source of your secrets)
- Use your adversaries and competition against you
- Complain about your shortcomings to his superiors
- Bad mouth about you to prospective employers
- Create a bad work culture
- Spread lies and create deceitful teams
- Basically break the team and the company due to their negativity. Without realizing that they will also lose their leadership and eventually their job with it
- Create a very malicious work environment, make it hard for anyone to function
How to remain careful?
Never reveal your personal lives in front of anyone at work (I know I did that mistake, cant tell you how much I’m regretting)
Try meditation and yoga- I know you’re perhaps a very secure person but someone can always insinuate you by passing a sarcastic, caustic comment or remark. Yoga will help you stay focused and calm
Try and help everyone in the organisation including the insecure leader. Eventually if people know you’re and have goodwill in the company, its hard to create a bad image about you
Be in good books of his superiors also
Stay clear from those people who are negative and are fueling your existing anger against him. They may not fight but you’ll end up fighting their battles and end up being an unrecognized martyr of a unknown corporate battle
Show your talents to those who need it and are capable of appreciating it (hoo…. I need to master this). Coz if you dont then, the insecure leader knows that your capabilities are his/her shortcomings and will his best to dodge you or side line you. Needless to say that it’ll affect your appraisal. I vividly remember my TL saying, who’ll do your appraisal? Boy there is a subtle hint everywhere and in everything
So why is a person insecure?
- They lack innovation and creativity
- They are generally ill-equipped or ill-suited for the job that they have been appointed for
- They use arrogance to shield their fears and insecurities
- When it comes to being a leader, they cater to their pride/arrogance rather than the vision of the company
- They have created a place for themselves by ass licking