April 19, 2013

The Note or the Vote?

We are faced with a dilemma when it comes to our choices. Most of the time it’s not the choice to exercise our rights that we really desire or seek to have control of; it’s just the fact that this right is there for us to exercise when we need them. Whenever we do however, most of the time, this need is exercised to gain something for ourselves rather than to gain or give something for society. Perhaps for many of us, when we make a decision, our thoughts never soar to those heights of thinking about the other person's welfare. It's always about "what's in this for me?", that guides our decision process. 

Such is this fetish of ours that it now seems to pervade into the arena of our vote in our choice of a leader for our Maldivian nation, to help us deal with the travails of life for which we have no time due to our more immediate family and personal needs. So is the call of participatory and representative democracy. But the quality of this decision of ours seem to be obfuscated by the desire for the Note. The vote's benefit seems to be more for the notes it can muster for us -- because it will help us gain some funds to build an annex to our house so that a paying-guest room can be erected or perhaps even on the possibility of investing in a house in Malaysia - and taking this thinking even further -- in the Swiss Alps or some other exotic location where no ordinary Maldivian can ever dream of living; or just so that one can buy that daily enticement of a motor cycle or a mobile phone? Such is the calling of our swollen egos. The vote matters only to the extent that it would fullfil a present and imminent desire that our "hawaa-nafs" desires, and only imperceptibly to the callings of our true self that caters to the humanity in us all. 

So one is left to wonder, why this thing called democracy has surfaced in the midst of a populace that seeks only present moment gratification and nothing the matter about what kind of a nation we leave for our posterity. Just as I do here in this blog, and constantly in my mind, “the note or the vote?” is a veritable debate we need to have going on in each of our minds. 

If we begin to do so now, perhaps a few generations down the line the answer might dawn on us that the vote indeed is the thing we need to protect -- for the sake of society!

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