Today’s educated man knows that Charles Darwin’s theory was right, still he believes in creation.
Platform 11, conceived by Digraj Singh and Malvika Gaur of Veva Art, aims to bring together different conversationalists in each episode to discuss matters of national, societal and cultural importance. In their first show held in the capital, in conversation were poet-lyricist Javed Akhtar, Purushottam Agrawal and artist Manish Pushkale discussing the need to build an understanding of the process of our education system, justice, traditions, religion and beliefs to enhance awareness.
Asked if he is an atheist, Javed Akhtar responded, “What is God? God is a reflection of man and also a man’s imagination. Emotion also plays a big part in the entire scenario. If we forget our traditions, that is wrong, and if we don’t, that is also wrong. So where are we headed? If the famous poet Kabir was alive at this point of time, he would surely be a hardcore atheist. It is slightly complicated that a person is confused as he or she might have certain beliefs, which contradict each other. Sentiments also play a part in religion. In the Indian tradition, to not believe in God is rare.”
He adds, “It is like having a very tall building but an elevator starting on the 80th floor upwards. Today’s educated man knows that Charles Darwin’s theory was right, still he believes in creation. Today’s educated man also knows that there was no life on the sun or moon, still he questions it. Is this man schizophrenic? We are conditioned since childhood and it will take generations to repair this. We are living in the time of schizophrenia. This is serious as we live in a world of contradictions,” opines Akhtar.
Focusing on the need to focus on the primary school years, which are the formative years of a child, Akhtar said, “For higher education we have all the technological know how and excellent faculty in great universities. But the basics are not right when it comes to primary school. Another important issue in present times is justice — it needs to be efficient and things need to be sorted out quickly. We get away because we know we can get away. We know that the person will go to the court and file a case and that will continue for many years to come,” he signs off.