A PVC Pipe, A Sickle and His Own Hands

Violence

I was returning home from office. I usually board the suburban train at a major crowded railway station. One such day while I was waiting for my train to arrive, all of a sudden people starting whispering among themselves, all of their gazes directed towards one corner of the platform. What I saw stunned me. Firstly I had never seen such shocking incidents happen in front my eyes. Secondly I despise being at places where such things happen.

A group of guys wearing completely unbearable and completely tarnished looking dresses each holding one weapon in his hand. His own hands being one of the weapons. As hundreds of people in the platform confusingly watched the much filmy incident unravel, one from the group hit the PVC pipe on some guy’s right hand, one fellow smashed unendurable blows right on the guy’s face and the other was holding huge sickle in his hand. Before anyone could realize that a group of men were attacking just ONE guy, they realized everyone watching them and in the wake of getting caught, ran away. The sickle had no work to do at least.

By then my train had arrived, I got in and while it slowly started to depart, I gazed at the boy holding the sickle. It was nerve-racking. Even if it feels like I am exaggerating it was indeed nerve-racking to watch him just hold the sickle. The boy looked not more than 20 years of age. I did not get a chance to look at the boy who was attacked.

While this is a first person encounter, I have heard hundred other stories of revenge drama, most of which could be made into movies. My village was once upon a time one of the most feared of places. Things have improved drastically at present. Just while I was feeling happy about how my village isn’t the way it was earlier, I heard a story of a group of men from my own village attacking a guy from nearby village. The guy who was attacked was last heard to be in ICU.

Besides the fact that almost 90% of such stories I hear involve boys, the fact that such mindless and imprudent brawls happen itself feels bitter. Having seen and heard so much about such violent incidents, a few questions arise, for which my pessimism in general shoots up to innumerable levels. When I try to contemplate over the possibility of positivity in resorting to such unlawful and unpleasant acts, I fail to find a proper positive reason. There isn’t any.

Although sometimes resorting to non-violence might also be insufficient to settle an issue, most of the times talking and settling things would lead to better and peaceful settlement. Violence is lawful only when there is threat to your life. You kill an ant since it brings you pain physically. You kill breeding mosquitoes because they are the source of diseases that are lethal. Again a physical threat. Violence can only be justified when you are at the receiving end of it.

Harvard University physiologist Walter Cannon coined a popularly obvious term Fight-for-Fight. His research shows that we are naturally and psychologically vested with instincts that help us “survive”. When we sense danger, Adrenaline is injected into our blood stream making our heart beat faster than usual making faster blood flow to muscles. At its extreme also considerably rare, a phenomenon called Hysterical Strength sets in giving us super-human abilities to get over the situation. Naturally human body is wired to enable survival.

You could resort to violence if not doing so is a threat to your own life. After all you are the most important being of your own self. Other wise resorting to violence just means things in you are wrong. When you hit someone without the fact that your life is under threat, such an act is not natural. You are just not wired to do that heinous act. Also not to mention violence is unlawful. I have nothing to opine about law. Law and justice has a long way to go before it breaches its own barrier of unlawfulness.

Next time when you resort to violence remember its is not the natural you.