June 18, 2024

Nardiya Sanchar Neeti – ‘Medium is Message’ v/s ‘Character is Message’

Dr. Jay Prakash Singh, in ‘Nardiya Sanchar Neeti’, neither tries to assess the Indian communication scenario against the parameters put forward by the West nor sought to gain validity from them. The book intricately weaves the themes of communication, the challenges posed by the globalisation, the impact of evolving technologies on the mediums of communication, the narration warfare, the place ‘truth’ holds within the existing framework of the media and the unparalleled communication skill of Maharshi Narad. With compelling innovative theme and skilful articulation, the book offers a poignant exploration of the complex arena of media and communication. The book shreds light on the Indian values of communication, which becomes pertinent in the era of fake news, deep fake, trolls as well as when more emphasis is being given to the technological aspects of communication process.

The writer in his work emphasises on the theme- ‘Character is Message’. In most civilizations there is an ambiguity between the concepts of ‘Truth’ and ‘Power’. This ambiguity leads to the conflict. However, in the Indian civilization, highest status has been accorded to the value of truth. The Sanskrit shloka ‘Satyapratishthayam Kriyaphalashrayatvam’ (सत्यप्रतिष्ठायां क्रियाफलाश्रयत्वम्), which means, ‘One who is committed to the ‘Truth’ and is loyal to one’s conscience, they easily achieve the success’, clearly demonstrates the primacy accorded to the truth as a value. The writer aptly validates his point through the Satyanarayan Katha (story), where ‘Satya’ has been equated with ‘Narayan’.

Devarshi Narad through the Satyanarayan Katha, establishes the supremacy of Truth as a value. Devarshi Narad throughout his communications exercises massive awareness towards the genuineness of the information being conveyed by him as well as also makes others aware towards the notion of truth. Dr. Jay Prakash has put forth that if media assumes ‘Truth’ as the ‘Narayana’ then it can effectively navigate through the ‘Crisis of Credibility, it is currently facing in the 21st century.

The book analyses the numerous dialogues, storylines, narratives, beliefs and traditions related to Devarshi Narad; the ways through which they communicate the positive energy and message for the general welfare as well as inspire and sensitise the collective conscience of the masses. There is contiguity as well as distinctness in the methods being adopted by Devarshi Narad to communicate his message in varied situations. ‘Nardiya Sanchar Neeti’ is not an exploration of historical chronology, rather the dialogues, stories and narrations of Devarshi Narad have been discussed within the perspective of communication, with special emphasis on the Bharatiya values and their increased relevance in contemporary times.

The dialogues and preaching have always held an important place in the Bharatiya tradition. The dialogues of Yam-Nachiketa, Yagvalakya-Gargi, Shri Krishna-Arjuna are among many others. The writer very well has put forward a detailed account of the Devarshi Narad’s dialogues. The major ones that find mention in the book are his dialogue with Shri Krishna, Maharshi Gaalav, Yuddhisthir, Asitdeval and Sranjay. Devarshi Narad’s preaching to Prahlad, the advice to Saamb to worship Suryanarayan and his preaching to Shukhdev also occupy a significant place in the book. Dr. Singh also mentions the anecdotes where Devarshi Narad has acted as an inspiring force, a catalyst, in their occurrence.

The Nardiya Sanchar Neeti is a wide and varied subject. The writer, although, has put a concerted effort in consolidating it, yet the chapters could have been well framed. It would have added more lucidity to the concept, and would have been easy to comprehend for the fresh readers.

It is said that, ‘Simplicity casts the complex impression’. This stands true for Narad’s art of expression as well as for Dr. Jay Prakash Singh’s style of expression in ‘Nardiya Sanchar Neeti’. The book also focuses more on the applied part of the communication, rather than going in the basics of the communication. It further accentuates its relevance. The book leaves a lasting impression on the reader’s mind.

 

Aditya Awasthi

Research Scholar, Centre for Kashmir Studies

Central University of Himachal Pradesh

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