A WRITER IN TRANSITION. BLOG #4.

                 THE MORAL AMBIGUITY.

           In my previous blog, I had discussed my attempts to find a theme for my next novel. Having decided to write a novel in the third person narrative, I had suggested that I would like a narrative where the protagonist would be driven by two strong emotions of guilt and sacrifice. The core of this novel would be that the protagonist would never realise that he is driven by these two emotions and still he would find his redemption. In this blog, I would discuss what happens to us when we are not aware of our own subconscious emotions and how this ignorance leads us to moral ambiguity.

           As we grow up, we realise that our notions of ‘good’ and ‘bad ‘ are not clear cut. We normally define these notions in the context of what we are required to do. In other words, there are no perfect definitions of good and bad. We decide what is good and what is bad depending on the circumstances that we face. Every time, when we face such a dilemma, we make a choice of what is good and what is bad depending on our own understanding of life. More often than not, we arrive at our choice based on what our intuition tells us about the choice. Of course, once we have made the decision, we always conjure up very good arguments to justify our choice. Rarely, if ever, we realise that our arguments in support of our choices are justifications of our choice and not the reasons for our choices.

            The trouble with growing up is that, as we grow older,  we become  more and more aware of this gap between the arguments as a justification and arguments as a reason behind our choices. As a child, each one of us lives in a blithe ignorance and believe that our desires are synonymous with what is good and therefore we pursue our desires and wishes with an endearing naivete. However, as we grow old, our moral sense tells us that life is not as simple as that. There is something more to life than the endless pursuit of wish fulfillment. The real problem with growing up is not that our moral sense tells us about what not to do, but rather that it doesn’t tell us what to do. Our sense of morality is, in some sense, negative. It reduces the number of choices that we can think of  what we ought to do. However, it never suggests any choices, on its own,  of what we ought to do. Therefore, sometimes we never know the morally correct choice until it is too late. This is the origin of our moral ambiguity. More importantly, it defines the human angst of modern times.

           I am tempted to believe that this story of individual development from naivete to ambiguity is also reflected in our collective history of our culture. In the ancient times, the societies  (and even religions) were founded on the simplistic notions of good and bad. With the passage of time, due to social and cultural evolution, we have evolved very intricate rules of justice and equity. However, somewhere deep within, we know that our laws also tell us what not to do and rarely tell us what to do.

            My focus however, is not really on this moral sense per se. My interest, as a novelist, is in the consequences of such a muted moral sense. If human beings are driven by their subconscious emotions  ( of which they are not aware of ) and if they are handicapped by this muted moral sense, every human being would be facing angst that arises from this moral ambiguity. Most of us have experienced situations wherein we know that what we want to do is not exactly right thing to do and still we want to do it because that gives us an emotional satisfaction. The tragedy of human life is that vague awareness of having transgressed and yet experiencing emotional deliverance. I think human being are not good or bad. They are good and bad at the same time.

            I think that Nature, in her infinite wisdom, has deliberately endowed us with this muted moral sense. Had she given us a complete morality, we , human beings, would be reduced to machines following Nature’s instructions. The value of human life lies in the fact that she/he has a freedom to pursue what she/he thinks is good and make mistakes. This freedom to commit mistakes also gives human beings a chance to redeem themselves. Our subconscious need to experience catharsis is actually a substitute for our destiny to experience our redemption. The true moral ambiguity lies in our need to experience this catharsis and redemption. I think there is no way to explain why we need to experience the subconscious emotional drives, the subsequent sense of transgression, it’s catharsis and finally a sense of redemption. I believe we don’t need to undergo these emotional cycles. We would be happy to be always correct and always satisfied. . However, I am convinced that in that case , we would not be human beings,  but some automatons. To quote a famous saying, to err is human. I am tempted to modify that saying and assert that to err is human destiny.

            I am planning to write my next novel where the protagonist is acutely conscious of his own moral ambiguity but he is driven by his subconscious mind to transgress. Of course, in the light of what I have written, the protagonist would have to find his own redemption.

           In my next blog, I would discuss what kind of protagonist I would want. This is because his profile would decide what  form of transgression the protagonist would be forced to commit by his own subconscious mind and how he would find his redemption. 

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MY SECOND NOVEL BLOG #19.

CAN MALE WRITERS CREATE AUTHENTIC  FEMALE CHARACTERS IN FICTION  ?

              In all my previous blogs ,  I have tried to discuss the details of creative processes that are responsible for producing a work of fiction. I have tried to analyze subconscious compulsions that drive a novelist in chiselling out a final version of a novel. I have also discussed how these subconscious compulsions of a novelist are the products of the society that a novelist lives in. Thus , any novel provides a window to understand what is happening inside the mind of a novelist and therefore inside the collective psyche of the society to which that novelist belongs. However , in all these previous blogs there was an impersonal frame of reference.  It is true that , in all these blogs , I did refer to my own creative compulsions and the ethos of the society that I am living in.  However, in all these blogs , Vaachakmitra as a writer was being analysed. Today  , I am going to discuss a topic wherein I would try to analyze Vaachakmitra as an individual. In that sense  , this blog is more personal than all my previous blogs. However , I would like to keep the tone of the discussion at the academic level.  Of course , I would discuss this aspect of my personal side in the context of my forthcoming novel.

            Today , I would discuss a gender aspect of creative writing. Admittedly  , the gender issue is a very sensitive issue. I would try to keep in mind the strong emotions that this issue normally evokes.  Therefore , I would try to be transparent without being offensive. The topic of this blog is ‘ Can male novelists create authentic  female characters ? ‘  Of course  , it is possible to invert the framework and ask ‘ Can a female novelist create authentic  male characters ? ‘ However , I doubt whether I am qualified to answer this inverse question.  Therefore , I would restrict myself to the original question about men’s ability to understand and depict women in fiction.

        I would begin by analyzing my own creative processes. When I wrote my first novel , I was not very self observant. I was more focused on articulating my innermost feelings. Therefore , I could not analyze myself while writing that novel. However , when I had to read that novel again while editing , I realized that the women in that novel were created to fulfill emotional requirements of the protagonist. Therefore , I started wondering whether this was necessary  ? Of course  , as I have discussed in some of my previous blogs , every character  ( whether male or female ) can be understood as a personification of one or more emotions of novelist’s subconscious mind.  However  , the question is whether the gender of a novelist would obscure such a personification ? Admittedly , it is possible to argue that all such personifications are subject to personal bias of the novelist, so why single out female characters created by male novelists. However , I believe that this singling out is necessary because it reflects on far more fundamental aspect of psychology and therefore that of psychoanalytical fiction.

           Before I express my views on that topic  , I would like to discuss how writing of my second novel has helped me to arrive at my present view.  As mentioned above , when I realised that I was not self observant enough during the writing of my first novel , I made a conscious choice of being self observant while writing my second novel. I realized , while writing my second novel , that it is not easy to think like a woman.  For a man , it is far easier to create a fancy dressed as woman than create a real woman in his fancy. In the novel that I am writing , the central character is a woman. However, the protagonist of the novel is a man. Therefore , the novel is a narrative of reminiscences of the  protagonist in which the central character of a woman predominates. Since the novel about the reminiscences of the protagonist  , it was always tempting to describe that woman as part fantasy and part reality.  However , I felt that that would be unfair to the central character of a woman. So , I have tried to create a literary device wherein she describes herself. This was the point of narration where I realized the importance of gender. Of course , the readers would have to decide whether I have been successful in depicting a female character without gender bias.

          I will now answer the question I have posed in the title of this blog. I am going to answer this question from the scientific and literary perspectives because I happen to be both , a scientist and a novelist. Genetics tells us that men and women share the same genes except for those present on X and Y  chromosomes. Since we do not exactly know how each chromosome contributes in creating our mind , it would be difficult decide whether men can think like women or women can think like men. However, it is most likely that our ability to think is decided by all our chromosomes.  It is only to the extent  where genes present on either X or Y chromosome influences creating our mind , that men and women would differ in their thinking. Therefore  , to that extent , it would indeed be difficult  for men to think like women and vice versa. However , as a novelist ,  I have a slightly different view. Men may not be able to think like women , but men can always understand the way women think and vice versa.  This is because  we understand things by not just by thinking but by empathising. Empathising is a process wherein we put ourselves in other person’s shoes and then try to perceive reality from that person’s perspective.  This ability to empathise elevates us to our humanity. Therefore , to answer the question , I can say that no , male novelists can not think from women’s perspective  but  , yes,  they can create a genuine female characters by empathy.

           It must be kept in mind that , in a broader sense , every character , whether male or female ,  created by novelist , whether male or female , is created by similar processes of empathising and internalisation. Therefore , the conception of fictional character , irrespective of its gender , is always through internalisation which is subjective anyway. Therefore every fictional character is blend of the subjective sensibility of novelist and the objective reality of our society. The process of personification extracts parts of reality and blends them with the novelist’s sensibility. Therefore fiction has a luxury of being inventive which is not available to sociology.

          In my next blog , I would discuss one more aspect of gender difference.  I would discuss whether the kind of emotions that we experience are derived from our gender. In other words , do men and women have different types of emotions ?

MY SECOND NOVEL BLOG #16

        ARE WE REALLY RATIONAL  ?

       In my previous blog , I had discussed the creative process that shapes the plot of a novel. I had discussed how personification of various emotions can create various characters and drive the story forward.  In that blog , I had mentioned that real creativity of a novelist lies in her /his ability to blend different , and sometimes conflicting , emotions to create a more realistic character. Such a character appeals to us because we ourselves are made out of several complex emotions.  Thus any character that has emotional depth because of blending of different emotions , would be more like us and therefore would be more appealing.

       In this blog , I would discuss how this blending of different emotions in a single character makes such a character a flawed character. Let us say that a character created by blending several emotions has sufficient emotional depth and is more realistic. While , as a novelist , I can tell you  that it is more  satisfying to create such a character , but the problem is that such a character turns out to be a flawed character. How does one  predict behavior of such a flawed character ? For a novelist  , this is  very crucial because the details of the plot of a novel hinges on how that  character would behave in a given situation. This problem is also faced by all of us in real life.  There are always individuals in our lives who are emotionally very complex and it is difficult to predict how they would behave. Of course , in real life , one does not have to follow a plot , whereas in a novel, the novelist has to create an interesting plot.

          I think the real problem with such fictional characters  is that their  ability to reason is influenced by their emotional frame of mind.  This is  true in our case also. Our ability to reason is also  influenced by our emotional frame of mind. Unlike computers , we think differently under different emotional framework. In this blog , I want to discuss whether we , as a species , are rational animals or not. Of course  , there are large number of books on various aspects of human ability to think  but I would sidestep the theoretical perspective.  I would write about this as a novelist and as an average ordinary human being.

       This aspect came to my notice while writing my second novel. As I have been writing about this novel in my blogs, this novel is about the theme of reincarnation. The story is actually about an average person , who in this novel , is a chartered accountant. He comes across someone in his life who apparently has memories of past births. Now , the protagonist  , being an ordinary human being , has no way to confirm whether this reincarnation is true or not.  Being a  professional, he tries to use his analytical skills to confirm whether the reincarnation is true or not.  The trouble is that he is emotionally very close to the person experiencing these past life memories.  As the story  progresses,  the protagonist is increasingly influenced by his emotions and his reasoning starts getting accordingly  distorted.

        As a novelist , I found it disturbing to realise that what if such a distortion could be happening with all of us. Therefore, I decided to observe how this  protagonist changes his reasoning as his relationship with the person experiencing the reincarnation changes. To my  surprise ,  I realized that human  rationality is not uniform or standard.  It changes with our emotions. We sometimes change our opinions over a period of time. This is actually a result of change in our  emotions. While trying to develop the character of the protagonist , I realized that there is more serious problem of how the emotions of the protagonist forced him to start believing in mutually contradictory reasons at the same time.  In order to do that , the protagonist started developing ingenious arguments. While  psychologists are familiar with this distortion of reasoning because of emotional disturbance , we do not recognise such a distortion in persons around us in real life.

       As a novelist ,  this was a good opportunity for me to try to understand human mind ,but as a human being, I was disturbed.  I realized that this could be happening to me as well. What if my own beliefs were also distorted ?  More importantly  , I realized that situation in real life was far more difficult.  In a novel, there is always a novelist who could keep characters in some kind of thematic control.  In real life , there is  no one who could exercise such a control. Maybe that is why our culture has invented a deity like destiny. By placing our faith in destiny , we we feel comfortable that our distorted reasoning is not of our own making.

        I would like to clarify that this view of our reasoning being distorted by our emotions is not necessarily a depressing view of human existence. This is because this very distortion also  produces heroic human beings. The  point behind writing this novel on reincarnation is that no matter what our emotions are , they would shape our reasoning. It might make someone a hero and it might make another person a psychopath.  The process of making both types of individuals is same. Interestingly  , sometimes an individual may be both , a hero as well as a psychopath. 

          I have asked a question in the title of this blog.  The answer to this question is that yes , we are rational , but our rationality is fragmented.  Our tragedies arise when these fragments of rationality conflict with one another. Maybe the correct answer is that  we are rational in parts but not as a whole. I would end this blog a serious comment on the nature of human tragedy.  In literature , we are taught that there are two types of tragedies , Greek and Shakespearean.  In Greek tragedy , it is the destiny that wrecks the tragedies in human lives.  In Shakespearean tragedy  , it is the human nature that wrecks tragedies in human lives. While writing this novel on reincarnation , I realized that both the types of tragedies are same if the destiny were to dictate the distortion of human mind . Maybe, destiny makes us think in such a way that our actions , based on this distorted reasoning , bring about tragic consequences.This is the core of Indian tragedy. It transcends Greek and Shakespearean tragedies. You just have to read Ramayana and Mahabharata to see how destiny operates.

          In my next blog , I would discuss how our wishful thinking actually tells us what we are. More importantly  , I would discuss how even wish fulfillment can have tragic consequences.  

MY SECOND NOVEL BLOG #10

     THE THEORY OF KARMA AND

             PSYCHOLOGY.

             

             I have been writing a series of blogs on the reasons why I am writing my second novel on the theme of reincarnation. In my previous blog I had discussed the theory of karma as a behavioural paradigm. I had suggested that the theory of karma is too complex for our mind to comprehend. Therefore our sages have fictionalized it in the form of reincarnation. I had written that whether the theory of karma is true or not is not important because due its emotional appeal , we would anyway believe it. Therefore the theory of karma is true in psychological sense. This results in a situation where the theory of karma becomes a behavioural paradigm. It is possible to evaluate our behavior in the context of the meaning of the theory of karma and values embedded in it. In order to understand how our belief in the theory of karma shapes our behavior , it is necessary to evaluate our behavior patterns with respect to general consequences of the theory of karma. In my last blog I had selected three most widely held  beliefs about karmic theory. They were accepting the inevitability of consequences of one’s karma , absolving oneself from the responsibility of that karma and fatalism. In this blog I would discuss these beliefs in some details.

                 The cornerstone of karmic theory is that each and every action of an individual creates consequences. More importantly , these consequences  are inevitable. The theory of karma , in its purest form , does not provide any method of annulling these consequences. Though , some religious interpretations do provide various forms of atonements , the theory of karma does not. The theory of karma , in that sense, transcends religious beliefs. However ,  the theory of karma is still a deeply moral  theory because it holds sanctity of truth in its core. 

         This inevitability of the consequences of one’s actions is most widely held belief. Let us see how  it shapes our behavior. At a superficial level , this inevitability of consequences of one’s karma makes us defensive in handling challenges of our lives. One is always subconsciously wary of doing something that might have some unfavorable consequences. Thus this belief acts as a moral compass. While this creates some kind social constraint on how we choose to behave , it also discourages any radical course of action that we could have thought of otherwise.  As a result , we tend to behave in manner that is harmless in one sense and timid in another sense.  It is natural that our civilization has been , by and large , a conformist civilization.

        The second most widely held belief in theory of karma is that individual responsibility  can be rationalized and that individual concerned can be absolved from such a responsibility. There are two types of reasonings involved in this belief . Firstly ,as mentioned above , the religious interpretations of the theory of karma have articulated a doctrine that one’s bad karma can be annulled by some kind of atonements. Of course what constitutes a bad karma and how it can be atoned , varies from one religious sect to another. The details may vary but the principle does not. If you were to think about it minutely , you would realize that this notion of bad karma and it’s atonement is not logically consistent. Ideally , if you were to commit a good karma as an atonement of a bad karma , you would set in two sets of consequences by your actions. One chain of consequences arising from bad karma and another chain of consequences arising from good karma. It is not necessary that one chain of consequences would nullify the second chain of consequences. The key insight in this dilemma is that the idea of annulling of bad karma by atonement works not because it is logical. The idea works because it appeals to our emotions. It is our psychological compulsion to feel guilty and seek catharsis that  makes this idea of atonements so popular.

          The second reasoning behind the popularity of absolving oneself from responsibility for the consequences of bad karma is based on inevitability of karmic cycle. The logic behind this is labeled as determinism in philosophy. The argument is that if the theory of karma  is true , then consequences would follow no matter what we do. Since the bad karma could have been performed in one’s past incarnation and therefore it can not be changed. Thus we can always console and condone ourselves simply by pointing out our inability to change our karmic past.  Strangely , this form of karmic determinism  provides us with an escape route from blaming ourselves. In turn , we tend to condone most of the bad things that we do in our lives and what others do to us.

           The fallacy of this logic lies in the fact that the theory of karma is not about individual egos but about the universe at large. Therefore our attempts at an individual level to rationalize our bad karmas is a subjective interpretation. It has beneficial effects on our psyche. It soothes our our sense of guilt. Therefore it is , like our belief in theory of karma , is a psychological truth.

          This brings me to third belief of fatalism. The karmic determinism that I mentioned above is a form of fatalism.  Fatalism is a belief that our past , present and future are already decided. Fatalism denies any possibility of changing the our own fate.It helps us to accommodate conflicting consequences of two other beliefs. If consequences of karma are inevitable then there is no way individual can absolve herself/ himself. However the fatalism , in the form of karmic determinism , enables us to believe in these two contradictory  beliefs simultaneously.

          This brings me to the topic of my next blog. I mentioned above that the theory of karma is not about individuals but it is about the universe at large. What does this assertion really mean ? To understand that , I would discuss the complexities of karmic theory and the extent of individual ownership of bad karmas in this theory in my next blog.

       For readers interested in knowing more about my writing my website is now available. This website is created and managed by my publisher CinnamonTeal Publishing. You can visit the website at this link.

http://vaachakmitra.com/

MY SECOND NOVEL BLOG #7.

THE PROBLEM OF CONTINUITY IN REINCARNATION. PART 2.

            This is second part of my blog on the theme of continuity. In the first part , I had discussed the problem of maintaining emotional continuity while writing a novel based on the theme of reincarnation. Since such a novel essentially uses reincarnation as a metaphor , the emotional continuity of main characters serves the purpose of creating a narrative. The emotional interactions between the main characters provide the narrative with necessary literary tensions. It is this internal emotional conflicts and synergies that provide a platform for readers to identify themselves with such a narrative. Thus , as mentioned in part one , it is this process of identification which allows the metaphor of reincarnation to work on reader’s subconscious mind.

                   In this second part I would focus on the problem of continuity of time while writing a novel based on reincarnation. When a novelist places her/ his characters in a particular period of time and in particular geographical location , the writer is , in effect , creating characters of time and place as well.  Let us see how it happens. When a protagonist is placed in a time frame which is say twenty years earlier than the year of publication of that novel, the writer needs to incorporate social beliefs and collective psyche of that time. Most intuitive way of doing it is incorporating these beliefs in the character of the protagonist. In addition , the protagonist must also have beliefs that are consistent with her/ his intended character. Thus the protagonist has to be created with two sets of beliefs. One representing the ethos of the time she/ he is shown to be living and a second set of beliefs representing her/ his own character as intended by the writer. One can judge the quality of a novel by assessing how these two sets of beliefs have been integrated into an internally consistent characterization of the protagonist.

                 This process of characterization of main characters of the novel also works for geographical location . Each town , each region and each country has certain traits. These get reflected in the characterizations of main characters shown to be living in that location. Sometimes , a writer might choose to present the geographical location as a character itself.

                       This is normally a routine protocol for writing a novel. In case of writing a novel based on the theme of reincarnation , the problem of characterization of main characters becomes more complicated. In case of reincarnation of the protagonist , the next birth would be in a different geographical location and in different eras. Therefore continuity  in the sense of time lapse would have to be in the form of changes in collective psyche.  For instance , if a character is born earlier in pre independent India , then it’s collective psyche would  be dominated by a sense of patriotism and freedom struggle on the principles of Gandhi’s non violence. If that character is born in its next birth in contemporary India , then the collective psyche of modern India would be dominated by internet and information technology. The problem for the novelist in that case is how to create a character which blends both these dominant themes into an internally consistent characterization. A novelist may then create a character , who was a freedom fighter in an earlier birth ,  is now reincarnated as a character of a whistleblower who uses internet to expose corrupt politicians. I must admit  that there is no such character in my novel that shares this type of characterization. I am simply giving an example to explain the detailing that goes into creating a believable character with whom the readers can relate emotionally.

         Similar detailing is required for geographical location.  For instance a character born in Mumbai in one birth may have born in some remote town in Bihar in previous birth say in the time of Ashoka the great . In that case the collective psyche of both the locations would be so different that the novelist would have to strive to create continuity of characterization.

       Of course , readers  might wonder why such detailing is required. There are two reasons for this. Firstly , such a continuity is what makes narrative believable. The human mind is built on narrative intelligence. Therefore only some types of narratives emotionally connect with the readers. Therefore a novelist must create such intuitive narratives. At a deeper level , one can see that continuity of time in the social context refers to transformation of collective psyche. The key insight is that  though our collective psyche changes with time , the fundamental nature of this psyche remains unchanged. It is as if the contours of our collective psyche changes with time but it’s contents do not change. It is this constancy of our collective psyche that is at the heart of the metaphor for reincarnation. Just as souls remain the same while their bodies change in different incarnations , the collective psyche remains same over millennia , it’s expressions change with time. It this relationship between changes and constancy of our collective psyche that finds its literary expression in the theme of reincarnation. The second reason for such detailing is that this detailing represents our intricate theory of Karma.

                    In my next blog , I would discuss how the theme of reincarnation represents the theory of Karma and how intricate this theory is supposed to be.

MY SECOND NOVEL BLOG#4.

                 REINCARNATION AND RELIGIOUS BELIEFS.

           In my previous blog , I had discussed the psychological reasons for the popularity of the notion of reincarnation. I had suggested that our belief in reincarnation is a projection of our own emotional needs. Our belief in reincarnation does not require a logical or a rational arguments. In that blog , I had also mentioned that apart from individual emotional needs , our belief in reincarnation also arises from our cultural and religious belief. In this blog , I would try to analyze the reasons why our religious doctrines and cultural ethos reinforce our belief in the notion of reincarnation.

             At the outset , I would like to clarify that my views on religion, any religion for that matter , are not based on some assumed intellectual superiority. I do not think that religions and intellectual attitudes are incompatible. My own view of the religion is that it plays a significant role in shaping individual sensibilities. There are quite a few scientists who had strong religious beliefs and yet they could excel in their professions. In my opinion , the religion also plays an important role in uniting it’s followers on the basis of common sensibilities. This society building role of a religion is a historical fact. Of course , this notion of common religious identity also leads to isolationist tendencies. However , I would refrain from sociological aspects of religion and instead focus on psychological and moral dimensions of religion and its role in reinforcing our belief in reincarnation.

               I think that the principal claim of all religions is the existence of an absolute entity. This entity is variously described , in different religions , as a personification of that absolute entity. This personification has different attributes depending on the sensibilities of that particular religion. The main task of all religions is to connect that absolute personified entity with mundane lives of its followers. However , the problem with this task is that the day to day life of religious followers is in absolute contrast with the attributes of the personified deity. While the deity may be a personification of piety and virtuousness, the life of a religious follower would be exactly opposite of that. Similarly , the deity would be a personification of tranquility and peace , whereas a follower’s life would be anything but that.

                Therefore the task of all religions is two fold. Firstly , they make you aware that you are separate from the deity. Therefore you must practice certain rituals to connect with the deity.  On the other hand , religions also profess that the deity is always present in each one of us in the form of certain absolute entity. This entity , being a part and parcel of the deity , is absolute and therefore indestructible. Therefore , our religious practices are of two types. Either one can practice religious rituals and  try to connect with the deity, or one can search oneself by introspection to connect with the deity. In fact , Sanskrit word for religion ‘dharma’ has two connotations. Dharma means a code of conduct as well as a direct relationship between the individual and the deity.

         Let us see how our religious beliefs shape our belief in reincarnation. To the extent the deity is part of an  individual, the deity can not simply perish when that  individual dies. At the same time, an individual has hardly any attributes that are ascribed to the deity. Therefore the attributes possessed by that individual must have arisen from somewhere else. Therefore an individual must be made up of several parts. One part represents the divine and other parts represent mundane aspects of reality. The divine part is always pure ànd absolute. The mundane parts are always imperfect and constantly changing. Thus it is necessary for most of the religions to propose an internal dichotomy of human beings. An individual is thus blend of divine and mundane. This dichotomy is inevitable once you accept a notion of absolute deity. However , the most important aspect of religions is not just to offer this type of logical explanation. The religions are also fundamental to human beings because they offer a moral dimension to us. This is where this dichotomy plays an important role.

                      In my opinion , human beings ,as a species , are a  moral species. Our need for moral justification is an inborn need. I also believe that articulation of this moral dimension has led us to the organized religions. If this is true , then it is easy to see that the notion of reincarnation would fullfil the conflicting requirements of our psyche. The absolute and divine part of ourselves can not perish therefore it must continue to exist even after our death. On the other hand , the mundane part of ourselves keeps on changing and is perishable.  Thus the notion of reincarnation enables us to accommodate this contradictory requirements of different parts of our psyche. Now ,add a moral dimension to this notion of reincarnation and you have a theory of Karma. The activities of mundane part of human beings , that can not be reconciled within a single life time  , can always be reconciled with the help of divine part of an individual. The notion of soul as the absolute and divine part of an individual , being imperishable , can be born again . Moreover , this part can reconcile the actions of the mundane and imperfect part of that individual.

Thus the notion of reincarnation accommodates the requirements of an absolute deity ,human beings made of several parts and more importantly , the moral sense of human beings. It is therefore natural that the notion of reincarnation is supported by our religious beliefs.             

           In my next blog , I would discuss the literary aspect of reincarnation. I think it is necessary to know that the notion of  reincarnation  has inherent metaphorical template. In my next blog I would discuss the notion of reincarnation as a metaphor.