- Wokeism originated in the haloed varsities of the West, with a promise to deliver social justice and freedom from the tyranny of society.
- It quickly morphed into a convenient tool for the Left to weaponize personal grievances with no empathy for the real victims.
- By branding the entire value chain of Western civilization as racist, wokeism seeks to pull down and destroy everything in its path. What began as an instrument against fascism has eventually become an instrument of fascism.
- The only nation to have taken an overt official stand against wokeism happens to be France, as they seek to stop wokeism in its tracks by reviving the connection with their ancient Euro-centric roots.
- Bharat, too, needs to heed the impending wokeism epidemic and invoke its Sanatani heritage to address issues of gender-fluidity and LGBTQ+ rights.
Thomas Payne once noted, “The greatest tyrannies are always perpetuated in the name of the noblest causes.” That’s akin to the classical proverb of how do-gooders typically do more harm than good, as they may not fully understand the consequences of their actions or may not take the perspectives of others into account. Or because they act according to their own egotistic, subjective calculations. The recent burgeoning woke phenomena that is spiraling out of control in the West is a case in point.
Like all new age terminologies, woke primarily means different things to different people. Positively speaking, the person who is awake and not sleeping is woke. It’s as simple as that. Social media refers to someone aware of certain social concerns, refuses to give in to established conventions, thinks outside the box, breaks the typical standard patterns, and frees themselves and those oppressed by society. What a rosy picture of woke culture! 
No wonder the humanities grad students in Bharat are jumping in with both feet on the woke bandwagon!
The reality is that, for all practical purposes, wokeism has devolved into a superset of weaponized personal grievances masquerading as a genuine social concern. It’s defined by its fraudulent nature as being distinct from legitimate social grievances. Wokeism holds no substance beyond the cacophony of fury, outrage, disapproval, and indignation and is characterized by zero empathy for the real victims.
Beyond its practical connotations, wokeism is saddled with so many confusing catchphrases that many might need help fighting the unwieldy and overwhelming jargon. If you hear many of these catchphrases and can’t understand what they mean, that’s because they are meant to be abstruse by design. The woke vocabulary is intended to mislead, make dangerously extreme ideas sound cool, and conceal their true meaning through ambiguity.
Take, for instance, the phrase ‘anti-racist.’ It means ‘the one who is opposed to racism,’ right? Wrong! In woke jargon, an anti-racist is one who accepts that our society is thoroughly racist and that the remedy is to embrace sweeping new forms of racial discrimination. Meaning? “The only remedy to past discrimination is present discrimination. The only remedy to present discrimination is future discrimination.”  In other words, a woke anti-racist is the one who actually supports racism and discrimination against people based on the color of their skin. Then there is ‘Systemic Racism’ wherein the entire system, as opposed to individual people, is racist. How? Well, if you can pin down society as a whole for systemic racism, then it gets easier to justify radical, destructive political changes. If everything is racist, everything must be torn down, right?
“The only remedy to past discrimination is present discrimination. The only remedy to present discrimination is future discrimination.”
Then cometh ‘Implicit Bias,’ which assumes that every person is secretly racist, even if that person doesn’t feel racist, act racist, or believe in treating people differently based on race. The biggest droll term in the entire woke lexicon must be ‘White Fragility,’ which surmises that all white people are racist, whether they think they are or not. All these terms come together to construct the ‘Critical Race Theory’ (CRT), which is “based on the premise that race is not a natural, biologically grounded feature of physically distinct subgroups of human beings but a socially constructed (culturally invented) category that is used to oppress and exploit people of color.” Meaning? Everybody and everything is racist. “We know that today racism is sustained more through law, policy, and practices than through individual bias and discrimination,” says Boston University law professor Jasmine Gonzales Rose, who teaches CRT. 
Those of you from a rigorous science background are bound to believe that all these abecedarian terms are likely the result of years of meticulous studies and onerous experimentation backed by peer-reviewed papers in credible academic journals, right? Unfortunately, that’s far from the truth. None of these theories and terminologies are built upon hard facts or cold data. After scratching the surface, it’s evident that much of this is pure nonsense, seeking to profit from real and perceived victimhood. Then again, all attempts to confront wokesim have only resulted in hounding the very examiner into silence and even ruthlessly canceling him/her out of all social, media, academic, and business forums. No disagreement can ever be tolerated wherever wokeism has settled in. Welcome to the modern contemporary facet of Leftism of the 21st century, wherein wokeism has been grafted as their new shiny skin, although that barely conceals their inherent fascism.
Big Brother to Non-Binary Elder Sibling
“The Soviet Union never ended. It reformed itself as the Woke West, a totalitarian liberal rather than a communist nightmare. Big Brother became a Non-Binary Elder Sibling,” writes David Sinclair in his ‘Without the Mob, There Is No Circus.’ Piers Morgan, who worked as DailyMail.com’s Editor-at-Large in the UK, experienced this totalitarian nightmare as he became the target of online outrage and wild accusations of racism – a couple of years ago after stating that he did not believe racism claims made by Meghan Markle in her interview with Oprah Winfrey. Not only did the woke outrage forced him out of his job when he refused to back down from his position, but the controversy also spread to the US, where Sharon Osbourne was forced to leave as the co-host of the CBS show ‘The Talk’ after defending Morgan’s right to his opinion.
Morgan is nonplussed, ‘This is not why our countries went to war with a fascist group like the Nazis. And yet here we are with a new liberal form of fascism, where you either sign up to a fake narrative, you either believe something that is untrue, or you have to be destroyed. Isn’t that what fascism is? Isn’t that the purest personification of fascism.” Morgan continues, “It’s exactly the same thing that they profess to detest most. If you ask anyone who is really woke, they hate fascists, and yet they behave exactly the same way.”
The damage, however, is much more acute in academia than the media in the US, where purveyors of wokeism are left unchallenged to prey on gullible, impressionable minds of kids in classrooms, where they attempt to change their perception of the world, as well as their sexual orientation. Students in such woke universities and elite schools as Harvard-Westlake in Los Angeles are being taught to despise capitalism and their skin color if it’s white. “These schools are the privilege of the privilege of the privilege. They say nonstop that they are all about inclusion. But they are, by definition, exclusive. These schools are for the tippity top of society,” describes a young mother of a student, and yet these schools are foremost in subscribing to a woke curriculum. Unfortunately, most parents are afraid to speak out against this nonsense for fear of being singled out as racists or worry about damaging their children’s future careers.
Even a systematic discipline like science is not spared. “We don’t call them Newton’s laws anymore… We call them the three fundamental laws of physics. They say we need to ‘decenter whiteness,’ and we need to acknowledge that there’s more than just Newton in physics.” However, the maximum damage inflicted is in the realm of values and aspiration space, when children are taught to give up ambition and yield positions that they might earn through hard work to others who are more marginalized.
This leads to students parroting views they don’t believe in during school assignments so that their grades don’t suffer. The very idea of lying to please your master seems like a typical strategy of survival in the red badlands of North Korea or the old Soviet Union. Sadly, the Left has foisted the dysfunctional Bolshevist ethos on the vibrant American dream – strangling Freedom, Equality, and Opportunity for a dystopian interpretation of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI).
The Cancel Cancer
The worst facet of wokeism is how those who express views that do not adhere to a single ideological lens are silenced. Conformity is rigidly enforced through state institutions, professional bodies, and social pressure. Bruce Pardy, a law professor at Queen’s University and a prominent civil rights advocate, describes wokeism as “modern fascism with a smiling face .” Cancel culture is then simply about ‘my way or the highway .’ The defenders of woke culture argue that this is just an accountability culture; it’s merely a cost of making the world a better place, they say. And for that, they must ruthlessly weed out those people or even institutions who may have allegedly acted out of a suspected bias or privilege ages ago. Ergo, the statues of past US Presidents and assorted political leaders have to go. 
But is there a sincerity of intent behind this woke madness of retrospective justice?
For instance, the New York Times (NYT) has primarily been the voice of articulation for the woke movement, as it has overtly sacrificed good old journalistic practices for propaganda and ‘post-journalism .’Earlier, NYT and the others in the old media setup needed happy customers; today, their goal is to “produce angry citizens .” So, shouldn’t NYT be considered the prime disseminator of all things woke? Here’s an alternate viewpoint: During World War II, The New York Times published over 1,800 detailed, timely stories about what was happening to Europe’s Jews. However, they chose to bury the story of the murder of the Jews, gave Nazis a free pass, and “affected contemporary understandings of the cataclysmic event .”[10,11] The question is whether NYT should be canceled for its retrospective injustice and racism. Technically, it should have been… except that wokes can’t really afford to cancel the fount that is the source of their power.
Mind you, without the support of the brutishly foaming Left media, wokeism might remain a rabid dog with no teeth. Hence, the wokes are known to pedal down their cancel-drivel from time to time and even make peace with the duplicitous Islamist media outlets. It would have been funny if it was not so tragic. For, Al Jazeera’s social media channel, AJ+, posts documentaries on transgender rights and the wickedness of misogyny, homophobia, and other bigotries—but its Arabic parent station broadcasts sermons by Muslim Brotherhood clerics advocating the killing of Jews and gays and offering husbands permission to beat their wives. 
Likewise, shouldn’t the Pope be canceled right away, considering how the Church has stifled the rights of the LGBTQ+ movement, suppressed women, and sheltered pedophiles amongst their clergy? Hell, the Vatican City itself was a gift from Mussolini to the Pope in exchange for the Church covering up his virulent fascism. 
It is only here that you realize that wokeism is not a new-age tool of the Left to fight fascism but some poppycock balderdash to sugarcoat its fascist tendencies. It is too bad that the same apocalyptic gibberish is slowly creeping into Bharat, too.
When woke life gives you lemons, make victimhood
Bharat has been lucky to escape wokeism in most portals of academia, primarily because the aspirational value of STEM courses easily outweighs the humanities disciplines, which are more easily prone to indoctrination of the insipid. Indeed, Bhartiyas have escaped from the industrial-scale gender-neutralization of the West so far and the potential scarring that overexposure to LGBTQ+ issues imbibes on innocent tiny tots. Not for them the notorious labeling of ‘x’ to negate and counterbalance physiology – no womxn for women, no mxn for men, and no Mx for Mr. or Ms. 
However, the globalization of wokeism has helped the local Left map the ‘white privilege’ as ‘Hindu privilege’ in Bharat. The local Left-liberals have been quick to realign anti-racism as anti-Hinduism, while Critical Race Theory is being conveniently recast as the Critical Caste Theory in Bharat. The missionary project of annihilating the keepers of Bharat’s traditional knowledge systems – the Brahmins, is now seeing a revival under the new woke guidelines that falsely connote how every Hindu is inherently racist, and every institution under the current setup is prevalently privileged and hopelessly racist. And apparently, the only viable solution is to break up every aspect of Hinduism that has survived and thrived over thousands of years. No wonder Bharat is witnessing more and more open calls to destroy Sanatana Dharma from the very land that birthed the Sanatana civilization.
The template is simple: blame Hinduism for everything wrong in Bharat today. Is your city polluted? Blame the Hindus for Diwali and firecrackers. Water scarcity? Blame Hindus for Holi. Violence against women? Target Navratri, Durga Pooja, and other Devi festivals. Looking for racial harmony? Ban Hindu yatras and processions. The list goes on and on. And lately, with the wokes getting increasingly mustered in the media and advertising circles, Bharat is witnessing a curious depiction of Hindus and their festivals in the media, where revelry is marked with a glum portrayal of sullen and mournful female characters, devoid of a bindi on their foreheads and with an oversexualized attire. Besides, there is a stream of celebrity advertisements targeting Hindu festivals for some weird social messaging. 
And while the kids are still free from the despicable woke programming, that fort is slowly caving in, especially for kids from lower socio-economic backgrounds. Recently, the schools belonging to the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation – Mumbai’s civic body introduced a gender education program in its schools “with an aim to sensitize students against prevalent gendered notions .”  There is nothing wrong with a gender education program per se, except that the said program was the brainchild of the British Council and was pushed by wannabe-woke politician Aaditya Thackeray, whose woke agenda set Mumbai back by decades, as he held back the Mumbai Metro project, over baseless green activism.
While wokeism is fast corroding the social fabric in the US and its allied Anglosphere by inverting natural classifications and humanizing eccentricity as social justice, its global spread has seen solid resistance in only one country – France. Yes, the French are fighting wokeism on the landing grounds, on the beaches, in the fields and the streets, and most importantly, in the classrooms. France has practically gone to war against the “American imports that aim to pit people with different identities against each other, chipping away at the French ideals of unity and equality .” After “mind-boggling” suggestions from US universities that pushing the study of the classical languages could foster institutional racism, Emmanuel Macron’s education minister Jean-Michel Blanquer has leaped to the defense of Latin and ancient Greek and was joined by his counterparts from Italy, Greece, and Cyprus in signing a charter pledging a “global and international strategy for the promotion and development of Latin and ancient Greek .” He insists French pupils should “develop their culture” by reading authors such as Sophocles. 
French President Emmanuel Macron, too, is against the menace of ‘wokeism’, as he told Elle Magazine this past summer that woke culture was “racializing” French society. “I see that our society is becoming progressively racialized,” he said. Meanwhile, the French minister delegate for gender equality and diversity, Elisabeth Moreno, told Bloomberg this May, “The woke culture is something very dangerous, and we shouldn’t bring it to France.” A group of 100 prominent scholars wrote an open letter supporting the minister and decrying theories “transferred from North American campuses” in Le Monde. Will that safeguard their principles of ‘Liberté, Egalité, Fraternité’? The jury is still out, but keeping the next generation grounded does seem like a good antidote against wokeism.
Lessons for Bharat
Perhaps Bharat needs to import more than just the Rafale aircraft technology from their ally, France. Like the French, maybe there is a case for their Ministry of Education to take a tough stand against the wokeism invasion on their campuses. Earlier, the rot was only in the humanities departments of infamous universities like JNU, Jamia, or Jadavpur – churning out assembly-line victim-card peddlers who gainfully served as cheap fodder and cheaper cadre to various professional agitators in Lutyens Delhi. But lately, these Leftist pigsties have gone upscale with private universities like Ashoka, where their ecosystem is trapping the progeny of rich industrialists, entrepreneurs, and family businessmen with the lure of a White West’s validation and an endorsement of the Anglosphere Left.
Just as the French are pushing their kids back towards studying the classics to reconnect them with their Euro-roots, Bharat too can redouble its efforts to promote Sanskrit as a must-learn language in primary schools. The country is already investing heavily in getting rid of their old Macaulay-leftover syllabuses propped up by the Left; probably, they need more private participation, too, to ensure that the youth imbibes the values of Bhagavat Geeta and other seminal texts.
A grounding in Sanatani values is probably the only remedy to the rampaging woke pandemic. Why, even a cursory look through the ancient epics will reveal that Bharatvarsha has been no stranger to either LGBTQ+ rights or even gender fluidity; the concepts have been enshrined in the dharmic lineage of Hindu Gods and Goddesses. There is historical evidence
of acknowledgment of “third sex” or those not confined to the male or female gender. The notion of “tritiya prakriti” or “napumsaka” was central to the Hindu belief system, folklore, epics, and early Vedic and Puranic literature and has been used to designate the lack of procreative potential, which was demonstrated by distinguishing between masculine and female characteristics.
The Mahabharata and the Shiva Purana mention Bhagwan Shiva in an ‘Ardhanarishvara’ (half man, half woman) form. And we find evidence of the ‘Ardhanarishvara’ statue in many of Bharat’s most famous temples. Evidently, androgyny is not a new concept for Sanatanis at all. Tales abound in the scriptures about the progressive Hindu culture in ancient times, where gender and sexuality were nothing but just a choice of a person.
There is this tale of Aravan, the son of Arjuna and Ulupi, who wedded the lovely Mohini, Bhagwan Krishna, transcending Himself into a female form. That’s why even today, the transgenders of Tamilnadu refer to themselves as Aravanis, after their forefather Aravan. Then there is the Mahabharata tale of Arjuna losing his masculinity for a year and living as a female, Brihanalla.
Gender fluidity and variation are recurring motifs in the Hindu narrative, and it is only right that Bhagwan Vishnu, the Preserver of the Creation, would have a role in it. He frequently transitioned into his sole female avatar, Mohini, to rescue the world; two examples are well-known. According to a legend, Bhagwan Vishnu first adopted the guise of the enchantress to divert the asuras or demons’ attention away from Amrita, the elixir of life. However, Bhagwan Shiva subsequently becomes attracted to this feminine form of Vishnu, and their union gives birth to Bhagwan Ayappa.  The point here is that gender fluidity and LGBTQ+ might be the fashionably new hypothesis for the Woke West today, but in Bharat, they have been an inseparable part of our timeless divine pantheon.
Young rebellious kids may not like this statement, but turning Sanatani sounds infinitely more cool than turning woke. Or as Carl Sagan presciently points out: “It pays to keep an open mind, but not so open that your brains fall out.”
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