Few movies have an impact on me that is as profound and long lasting as ‘Inception.’ Not because of the way it has been made, or the actors, or the story, all of which are brilliant in their own right, but because of the extraordinary concept it is based on.
“What is the most resilient parasite? Bacteria? A virus? An intestinal worm? An idea. Resilient… highly contagious. Once an idea has taken hold of the brain it’s almost impossible to eradicate. An idea that is fully formed – fully understood – that sticks; right in there somewhere.”
After Cobb stated that, it seems so obvious. The whole of human history is based on the impact of Inception of ideas, isn’t it. Great wars have been fought on the basis of a small seed of an idea that was incepted into a vulnerable mind. Be it MacBeth or Mahabharata and Ramayana, the greatest sagas hinge on the smallest of ideas incepted into a receptive mind. Rama, Lakshamana and Seetha were sent on exile because Kooni (Manthara) sowed the seeds of the idea that her son should rule the kingdom into Kaikeyi’s mind. The Kauravas went to war with the Pandavas because Shakuni put the idea into first Dhrutarashtra’s and then Duryodhana’s mind that the Pandavas were a threat to their supremacy. Rama banished Seetha after returning back to Ayodhya, thanks to the seeds of doubt sowed in his mind by the mindless banter between a washerman and his wife.
Our lives are filled with thoughts and actions borne out of the inception of an idea somewhere deep inside the mind. A childhood hurt leads to a son antagonizing his parents for life. A story heard about a daughter-in-law’s cunning prompts a new mother-in-law to view her son’s wife with doubt and apprehension. A boy given more kheer than his sister incepts into him the idea that he is more entitled than his female sibling, and leads him to establish his entitlement over the woman’s body too, by raping her.
Ideas are very powerful. Which is why, it is important to inculcate the right ideas into the minds of our younger generation. As it is, they get zillions of mixed messages from all around them. As parents, we have a responsibility to empower them to steer through the idea deluge. Even then, you can’t really exercise control over which ideas are incepted and which aren’t into those impressionable minds.
Ideas, whether we like them or not, whether they are good or bad, will continue to shape human history, as they have been doing forever. Perhaps, training our minds to view them objectively, to be aware, and to defer judgment will help us nurture the right ideas and weed out unnecessary ones.
This post has been written as part of the A-Z Challenge. Do keep visiting this blog on more gyan on life and my perception of it, all this month.