Heylos Dost Log. Aaj khush toh bahut hoge tum, haain! (Pun intended) On the eve of the Independence Day of India, I have an urge to tell all my readers **Jai Ho.

Confused? Ermm.. Let’s get back to what is going on in my mind. There is this little feeling of ‘nothingness’ going around for quite a sometime. Is it normal to feel so? Say na, please? Wait. How would you really say if I am not being clear in putting forward my thoughts on this post. This feeling creeps within me everyday, every morning, every time I leave for work, every time I touch the feet of Mom and Dad.

Ya. You kind of read that right! Every time I step of my house in the morning, I touch the feet of Mom and Dad. And in return they tell me **Jai Ho!

I wonder why do they speak **Jai Ho! I mean why not **Amen! Why not **Tathaastu? Why not **Vijayee Bhavah? I joke around and tell them that they are acting as if they some die hard fans of musician A.R. Rahman.

Yes. To a certain extent, Jai Ho owes a small percentage of fame to musician Rahman. Had it not been his idea of making this an anthem, he wouldn’t have won an Oscar and in the process Jai Ho wouldn’t have become the signature of India. Jai Ho is, truly, the toast of the nation.

But again. The debate lies on why Jai Ho? Why not Amen, Tathaastu or Vijayee Bhavah?

To answer this, I came across an article by Mr. Devdutt Pattanaik who writes for a newspaper called Mid-Day. In this particular article, he makes us aware of the difference between Vijayee Bhavah and Jai Ho using the age old example of Mahabharata, an Indian epic narrated by sage Vyasa and written by Lord Ganesha.

In case you aren’t able to go through the article, I would like to be precise in detailing its contents. Jai Ho and Vijayee Bhavah mean the same i.e. “May You be Victorious”. He said that Jai and Vijay both mean “Victory”. The difference lies in its usage. He tells us the story of Yudhishtira, the eldest of Pandavas, reaching heaven and finding himself to be greeted by Kauravas including Duryodhana and Dusshasana. His mind filled up with anger and hatred. He asked the Devas (Gods) about his wife Draupadi and other brothers Bhima, Arjun, Nakul, Sahadeva and Karna. In reply, the Devas took him deep below the Earth’s crust at a place which was the opposite of heaven, gloomy, miserable and i.e. hell. He saw his family suffer and go through pain.

Yudhishtira couldn’t take this anymore and protested to the Gods that he can’t live in heaven if his family is in hell. The Gods smiled and replied that he got a chance to attain heaven because he had given up all his attachments on his way to death. But what he failed to give up was his anger, hatred and ego.

Upon realizing his mistake, he felt guilty about himself and took a dip in river Ganga to wash away his sins and thus attaining heaven.

And hence, Mahabharata doesn’t end at Pandavas’ victory over Kauravas and winning back their kingdom. It ends at Yudhishtira’s victory over himself and attaining heaven.

In practical world, people use Vijayee Bhavah to win in a battle, competition, war, etc. What they fail to use is blessing others or being blessed with Jai Ho. You aren’t truly victorious by defeating the visible enemies or competitors. You are victorious only when you defeat your invisible enemies. The enemies that are hidden deep within you in the form of anger, hatred, bloated ego, lust for power! That’s the sole purpose of teachings of Mahabharata. This mythological epic doesn’t teach, “You shouldn’t fight with your brothers.” It teaches, “You should learn to conquer the hidden demons inside yourself. In turn, you shall be able conquer the situation around you.”

It reminds me of India’s national anthem.

_Jana gaṇa mana adhināyaka jaya hē

Bhārata bhāgya Vidhātā

Pañjāba Sindhu Gujarāṭa Marāṭhā

Drāviḍa Utkala Baṅga

Vindhya Himācala ẏamunā Gaṅgā

Ucchala jaladhi taraṅga

Tava śubha nāmē jāgē

Tava śubha āśiṣa māgē

Gāhē tava jaya gāthā

Jana gaṇa maṅgala dāyaka jaya hē

Bhārata bhāgya vidhātā

**Jaya hē jaya hē jaya hē

Jaya jaya jaya jaya hē**_

For all my non-Indian friends, as in Wikipedia, the meaning of our anthem is:

_O! Dispenser of India’s destiny, thou art the ruler of the minds of all people

Thy name rouses the hearts of Punjab, Sindh, Gujarat, the Maratha country,

in the Dravida country, Utkala and Bengal;

It echoes in the hills of the Vindhyas and Himalayas,

it mingles in the rhapsodies of the pure waters of Yamuna and the Ganges.

They chant only thy name.

They seek only thy auspicious blessings.

They sing only the glory of thy victory.

The salvation of all people waits in thy hands,

O! Dispenser of India’s destiny, thou art the ruler of the minds of all people

Victory to thee, Victory to thee, Victory to thee,

Victory, Victory, Victory, Victory to thee!_

The emphasis is laid on “Jaya hē” which is equivalent to “Jai Ho”

When you are blessed with “Tathaastu” or “Amen” it means “So be it”. It means that may you get whatever you wish. May it be a good thing or a bad thing. When you are blessed with “Vijayee Bhavah” it means that may you be victorious against your enemies and competitors. But Mom and Dad taught me that the real blessing is only when your ethics win and when you are the conqueror of your vices. The logic is, if your morals and ethics can conquer your vices then there is no scope of competition and animosity.

One last piece of word, we all crib about the stale working government, corruption in the system. It is because we have encouraged them to do so. We all know this. We are reaping the fruits of the seeds of evil that we had sown. If charity begins at home then even evils begin from self.

On the eve of our Independence Day, I would like to clarify that I do support the noble cause and intentions of Anna Hazare. But let’s be honest. He has chinks in his armour in the form of people with double standards, selfish motives and vested interests. In my opinion, merely going on an indefinite hunger strikes or pinpointing bureaucrats and exposing scandals won’t really heal our problems. It will be possible only when we stop encouraging the so called people to embrace corrupt means.

It is time we start cleaning ourselves before trying to clean the system. If we follow rules the we don’t need to bend the rules. If we don’t bend the rules then we don’t need to encourage corruption, graft or forgery.

Moral of my lecture?

Dost log, I have just two words to say. **Jai Ho! जय हो!….

… Because even India’s nation anthem says so. 🙂

“**Jaya hē” 🙂

**Jai Hind 🙂