Updated: Mar 6, 2022
Back in fall 2016, I took a course called “the World of J.R.R. Tolkein”. Tolkien didn’t think that any man was fit to rule (Tolkien letter 52). He understood what power does to man, signified by the One Ring. The ideal people, the Hobbits, had neither a king nor a government. The only character he accepted as the venerable king of middle earth bowed down to the smallest of its peoples, the Hobbits. Aragorn, thus, embodied humility. He was well aware of his weakness. He refused to take the ring. He had even refused to be the king and stayed just a ranger.
Outside the words of dead people, I would occasionally bump into people who understood that governments don't solve problems but create them. They talked about liberty, free-markets, and Libertarianism. Outside college, it wasn’t a big deal to find intellectuals who understood that government is unnecessary. Small groups of people talked about the works of Ayn Rand and listened to the likes of Ron Paul. These ideas were fairly common in intellectual circles but greatly censured on college campuses and in the media. Libertarians were slammed as crazy anarchists. Of course, that is an ad hominem. Just what do you expect from the media?
However, I haven’t seen any of those ideas here in India. I honestly don’t foresee people here debating those topics anytime soon. The main premise of libertarian thought is non-aggression. They argue that governments act under the threat of direct aggression or indirect aggression also know as laws. This is unimaginable for most Indians.
Most Indians have probably never seen things get done without aggression. They grow up getting beat up at home by parents and at school by teachers. They grow up watching their friends and siblings go through the same. The paradigm of leadership in India is to make people do things via force. I am glad when they don't throw a jug at a failing microwave or hit a dying plant with a bat to fix it. But somehow, they use that model on children and students. And they don’t even know that they are acting like uncultured beasts. By the time Indian children become well-functioning adults, they are deadbeat. Obedience to authority is taught as a virtue at home and in schools. In fact, many take pride in obeying their parents when they really have no choice. Why not paint helplessness as obedience? Thus, violence and abuse of power are all they have ever seen. I can’t imagine these people thinking that non-aggression can be a foundational premise for a peaceful society.
There is something else we can take from here. If you want to guess how a nation is, look at its family values and education system. These are the two places children spend their most programmable years. In these two places, they learn principles that they will operate on for the rest of their lives. Here, they are fed what is right and wrong by people who themselves are clueless about both. Then, they spend the rest of their lives replaying the same thoughts, principles, actions, and errors.
Look at his video of men getting beat up.
This is so common in India that many don’t even think that such abuse of power is barbaric, especially by those who are fed via taxation. But this is all they have ever seen. The police definitely don’t feel embarrassed for acting like animals. So long people don’t see it as a disgusting violation of individual sovereignty, they are destined to be slaves at a spiritual level. A simple solution was to fine those who broke the rule. The use of violence to resolve conflict equates man with beasts.
Most Indians have been so brainwashed that they compete for government jobs and praise those who join civil services. Some actually think that they can improve the government or the system. It is like Boromir saying that the one ring can be "wielded" against Sauron. But Elrond knew that you can’t defeat the enemy with his weapon. Similarly, laws and governments are weapons of the tyrant. You can’t use them to resolve tyranny. I am afraid India is culturally not ready to free itself from the government and its law. In fact, they ask me to get admitted to a mental hospital just for telling these truths.
Tolkien, John. The Letters of J.R.R. Tolkien, edited by Humphrey Carpenter, assisted by
Christopher Tolkien, 1st ed., Mariner Books, 2000.