A nice word for today’s Daily Prompt – Autonomy. It means self-governance or the freedom to do things on your own. It is an interesting topic to write on because, strictly speaking, we are not at all autonomous. Our lives are affected or controlled by hundreds of other things and events that take place in and around where we live. So, Autonomy is merely a concept that can never be true in its strictest form.
But let me take the autonomy (in its most free form) to talk about things that I find should be autonomous in my country, India (or my state, Sikkim, in particular). I find tens of thousands of issues, but I am not here to advocate about the inability of people to change them. Change is a natural, gradual, and subtle process (although sometimes, it isn’t so)! So, everything should be changed slowly – we shouldn’t hasten through the process. Autonomy is no different. If we want for us to be autonomous, we must take short, guided steps towards it.
So, what exactly am I searching for? My state is rich in variance – be it cultural, racial, linguistic, or religious. Yet, we speak a common language – Nepali. Everyone knows it and, apart from that, almost three quarters of the population can speak English. What autonomy do I want here? The answer is: autonomy in being able to speak any language without prejudice. Those who speak English in public are, somehow, considered being too proud and arrogant. I want that to change – I want autonomy in the language that we speak in public. Thank god my father, who is an expert in Nepali linguistics, supports globalization of languages. He believes in one common language for all of humanity; since English is the closest possible choice, so be it!
People are very strict about habits and mannerisms. If you walk with your girlfriend, hand in hand, in public, then you are considered ill-mannered. But if foreigners/visitors do the same, they are considered (habituated and) modern. What irony! Especially in mainland India, kissing in public is considered ill-mannered whereas pissing in public isn’t (although only in some places). Am I asking for more if I want to revert this? That is my autonomy mission: eradicate public pissing and encourage public kissing (sounds funny though).
Thankfully, the people of my state have adopted modernity in a positive manner when it comes to fashion and clothing. The so called “six-inch” gap between a sari and the blouse is considered equal to the “six-inch” gap between a girl’s tee and her jeans. For westerners who do not know of this concept, let me explain. In India, a “six-inch” gap between a sari and the blouse is considered okay (good) but the latter is considered quite ill-mannered. I know, I know! It is funny and weird. But so is the case. Therefore, I want autonomy regarding fashion and clothing.
After all that I have written in these five paragraphs, I am sure you came to know a little bit about me (especially with the bold words). Although it is true that I want autonomy in all the good things, I am also acquainted to the fact that change is constant but gradual. This article is a mere attempt at letting my fellow bloggers and dear readers know a little bit about me without directly implying it. That’s why – AutoKnowMe instead of Autonomy. 😀
(04. 07. 2016)