Independence, invasion and interdependence | Daily News


Independence, invasion and interdependence

Thus have I heard

I was told by some of my teachers that history teaches us three components linked to our lives. According to that, the teacher and history should be read and re-read from time to time in order to gauge the concept of independence. It is a belonging or a title deed one holds as a document that should be reassessed. How do we revalue independence? It is mainly through the episodes as written or stated in history.

The term or the word independent is explained as a situation not under another’s control or rule. Further, it is the state of not having connections with another. As such, in a wider sense, independence is the quality or state of being free from bonds, control and/or rule. We hear from time to time how people use these terms. Some say as a self-reference, I am free from all bonds as such I am a free-willed person or an independent being. Some others say that we are a free state. We freed ourselves from all extraneous forces. But questions arise.

How really are you free from bonds?

Are you truly living in a free state?

The response could be manifold. Some say that though they live in a free state, the mind and the living conditions are not quite free. This response could prolong as far as the interpretations given to freedom or independence is referred to as contextually. This historians and anthropologists have pointed out the nature of invasion that disturbs or lead to percussions by way of various types of invasion.

When a particular group of beings, be it humans or some other type, are disturbed by the invasion of another group of living beings. The state of being in peace is detoured in another direction. Thus the scholars in the two disciplines point out the nature of the invasion. The invasion depends on the power and the needs of the invading group of beings. The hunter who roams about in the forest is armed with bows and arrows or rifles and firearms.

As such, the invasion depends on the strength of the power possessed by invaders who so enter a territory. This has happened over the centuries to almost all the nations in the world in a global sense. As a group of human beings, we in Sri Lanka have observed and kept various types of records on the nature of three main invaders who controlled us and ruled as over the years gone by. The first was the Dutch who ruled some time and came to be known as the Dutch rule. Then came the Portuguese whose rule was known as the Portuguese period. They were followed by the British which came to be known as British rule. They were all known in the first instance as invaders. Then when they started ruling, they were known as rulers. The sociologists say that this nature of the invasion and rule comes to mean interdependence. The concept of interdependence may sound controversial as against the concept of independence.

From various points of view, interdependence may look a contradiction. And why is it contradictory? The nature of the invaders has been transformed into interdependence from varying standpoints. Philosophers have pronounced nature of the conscience of the masses as being invaded by aliens or foreign conceptual ideologies. Has this not happened is the inevitable question raised in the analysis and interpretation of interdependence.

Give us the freedom we enjoyed before you invaded our territories is the term used by the masses who happened to be the victims or the subjects in the invasion process. They need a certain degree of independence from the bonds of invasions and interdependence. We grant you the independence you need on conditions laid as agreements or testaments could be the response of those who ruled or controlled the victims or subjects.

As Karl Marx pointed out, wherever the man goes, he is bound by chains. This paved the way for a philosophic vision as regards the condition of a man living in any century, at any given time. Why is a man bound by chains? Can’t he be freed from those chains? Who is going to help him in this venture? Dr Radhakrishnan responds to this in his edition of ‘The Concept Man’:

“The Commonwealth of humanity has no written constitution; it is based on a community of ideals, freedom and dignity of the individual rule of law, economic opportunity for all citizens and love of [email protected]

The basic principles of dignity and freedom, as he points out, is a faith in himself and what he learns to get his own free will from the external forces around. Perhaps it is the spiritual freedom that one has to achieve.

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