Tuesday, 17 April 2018

An echo chamber

Read an interesting article on Aeon today: Why it is hard to escape an echo chamber?

As I read this article all I could think, at every instance or para of it was the present grip of Mr Modi on the Indian electorate.  The BJP that is presenting itself is very different from that of the BJP represented by Vajpayee or even Advani.  The former, was distinctly clear about its agenda, course of action and vision.  It made no veiled presentation of itself.  Everyone, not just members of the party, knew what its aims and objectives were.  Not so with the present BJP.  What it has succeeded indeed is turn the Indian mind into an echo chamber.  In doing so it has not blocked itself from 'other voices', merely branded them untrustworthy, corrupted and therefore not worth anything.  Far from doublespeak, or even momentary epistemic glimpses, the echo chamber sounds rational, interested in the truth, active throughout and resonates with voices; but merely endorsing its own principles.  Even the contrary voices somehow are so manipulated (not by changing their content, but by changing the mind of the listener), that they endorse the principles of the 'ghetto'. 

The solution out of this echo chamber?  Trust!  There are numerous voices that resonate in a society.  However we know not whom and what to trust.  Unless we begin to trust a voice and that voice proves itself trustworthy, we will only further entrench ourselves in the echo chamber. 

To be more fair to the reading of the article, I can even look at my own Catholic upbringing as a echo chamber.  However, as long as one is willing to look at, evaluate and even trust other contrary sources, is open minded about the authority of sources other than Catholic sources, am willing to be won over by the goodness I observe, acknowledge and appreciate in others, especially non-Christians... I would think I'm not an ostrich in an echo chamber.  

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