Thursday, March 21, 2019

Personalities who influenced Dr.B.R. Ambedkar the most



Personalities who influenced Dr.B.R. Ambedkar the most
( Paying Revered Tributes on 128thBirthday of Dr.Ambedkar falling on 14th April,2019 )
                                                        By:-Er.H.R.Phonsa
The life storey of Bharat Ratana Baba Saheb  Dr Bhimrao Ambedkar   is a saga of great struggles and achievements. Dr Ambedkar used to compare himself with Moses, who ( Moses) wanted to relieve the Israeli’s from forced labour and their unending servitude so led his peoples to Palestine. Dr Ambedkar led his peoples to break the yoke of religious, political social and economic barriers imposed by Hindu un-natural laws framed against his peoples called Shudhars,  Ati Shudras untouchables, Namashudras etc. Dr Ambedkar catalogued, expanded and interpreted the code of laws of his country. He was opposed to Mahatma Gandhi in many ways, still keeping in view the   Dr. Ambedkar’s contributions for the Indian Nation, Mahatma Gandhi described him as a man who has carved out  in society a unique position for himself and he is not a man to allow himself  to be forgotten. Perhaps he was born to cut the age old caste shackles of his peoples, which had reduced their life to even below of those of animals.
 Life Sketch :-
Bharat  Ratana Baba Saheb  Dr Bhimrao Ambedkar  was born on 14 th April 1891 at Mhow to  revered  Subedar Major Ramji Sakhpal and Mata Bhimabai in  Mahar Community. It is said that Mahars were the rulers of Marashtra (Mahar + Rashtra ) but because of  Hindu agony  and caste based  values, they were reduced to the level of Untouchables, Sudras, Ati sudra, whose only shadow was considered enough to pollute an upper caste Hindu. He personally faced worst type of caste hate Ambedkar worked over 18 hours a day and at times sky was his roof and the earth his floor,. Bhimrao was married to Ramabai at the tender age of 17 years when his spouse was only of 9 years.  Mata Ramabai stood like a rock by her Sahib  till her death on May 27,  1935. Due to handwork of duo father and son  Bhimrao earned world’s Highest academic  Degrees of D.sc ( London ); PhD and LL.D  (Columbia ); M.A ; D. Lit ( Osmania )  Bar –at- Law (London ) . Dr Ambedkar knew ten languages Marathi (mother tongue), Hindi, English, Gujarati, Pali, Sanskrit, Bengali, Persian, French and German. He could speak fluently seven languages. According to his autobiography ‘Waiting for a Visa'. Ambedkar wrote  that he wrote Pali  to English Dictionary( Quora).  Dr Ambedkar also served  on highly prestigious positions  as Labour member of Viceroy’s Executive Council (1942-46 ) ; First Law Minister Of Independent India and earned the distinction of selection as Chairman Of the Constitution Drafting  Committee to draft Constitution for free India and is so called “ father Of Indian constitution.” Some called him Mother of Indian Constitution as well. He proved an emancipator for Dalits, a torch bearer for the liberation of slaves’ world over and an insurmountable rock for his opponents. He contributed for the freedom of India, but more for the Dalits, who were slaves to the slaves of British India.  He was highly praised by those who understood his odious cause for the liberation of his Dalit community persons, but also abused as traitor by those who never appreciated his mission of life and wanted to maintain status-quo in social, political, educational, economic and religious spheres even after independence. He was for change and offer said” Consistency is a virtue of an ass”
       It is difficult to count the persons who influenced the life of a life long student. Baba Sahib owned one of world’s biggest personnel libraries having nearly 50,000 books. As Baba Sahib was an author of large number of Books, essays and had  attended many world class Universities, researched in many museums, Libraries, remained in association of  many learned teachers ,politicians, religious leaders so it is difficult to count or have details of all those personalities who influenced the his life. A visit to him was a visit to to a walking museum so said one of his biographer.  It was therefore difficult to know about all those  great personalities who influenced his life .An attempt here has been made to find out some personalities who  directly or indirectly  who influenced shaping of life of  Bharat Ratna Baba Sahib Dr. B. R. Ambedkar’s life and personality.
         Some of the Personalities who influenced Dr. Ambedkar’s life the most:-
A)      Subedar Major Ramji Sakhpal (1849-1916AD): - Honesty, Hard working, dedication, urge to get higher education ,  honesty and boldness in his conduct and to work for elevation of his fellow untouchables was learned by Ambedkar from his father subedar Major Ramji Sakhpal.
B)       Guru Ravidas( 1398-1540 AD):- Dr. Ambedkar held in high esteems Shri Guru Ravidas Ji. Perhaps the rationale of equality, brotherhood, Republic democracy, socialist, individual dignity is borrowed from the philosophy of Shri Guru Ravidas.
C)          Kabir (1440-1518 AD) :- Dr. Ambedkar’s family belonged to the devotional path shown by  Sadguru Kabir ji a great  Dalit Saint  Devotional songs of Kabir Ji were daily sung with love by the family, which effected the tender mind set of child Bhimrao. Kabir Ji’s verses including “Jat Pat Pushey Na koye, Har Ko Bhaje so Har Ka hoi” i.e Caste does not decide your fate, but your devotion to Lord is supreme. Kabir Ji was taken as Ambedkar’s Second Guru, first being Budha.
D)      Budha( 563-480  BCA):- The Budha philosophy influnced Ambedkar the most. He like Budha revolted against Vedas, Upnishadas, un-natural Brahminical division of the humans.  He studied Bhudha deepely, so like Budha he always adopted just ways of his conduct negating Brahminical  ways of salvation as religious rites, rituals, religious ceremonies,and sacrifices . He was firm believer like Budha that every individual  was the maker or spoiler of one’s destiny. Budha never proclaimed himself as God, Avtar or His incarnation, so influenced the inner mind of Dr. Ambedkar. When he got convinced that Hinduism was immune to reform. He brought back Buddha to India by embracing Buddhism on 14 th   October 1956 along with over three Lacs of men and women. Dr. Ambedkar lived for 22 days after conversion to Buddhism and during this small period over Five Lacs Dalits got converted to Buddhism. Dr. Ambedkar in his last days wrote a Master Book of 599 pages on Buddhism “Buddha and His Dhamma”
E)          Jyotiba Phule(1827-1890 AD):- Jyotiba Phule was the greatest Shudra of modern India, who made Hindu Untouchables conscious of their slavery to the Upper  Caste Hindus. He gave the gospel that in India Social democracy was more vital than independence from foreign rule. Phule started 18 school in Poona for girls against stanch opposition from the caste Hindus as education for women was sin in  Hindu Manu Laws.  He is considered as political Guru Of Dr. Ambedkar and both were convinced that all men are equal  by birth so need to be provided equal opportunities for progress in all spheres. Both fought through out their lives to break social and economical barriers erected to segregate men on their castes at birth.
F)       Booker T. Washington( 1856-1915): - During Dr. Ambedkar’s American stay, he was influenced by the Constitution of  U.S.A. and its fourteenth Amendment  declaring freedom to Negroes. He was also influenced most by the life of Booker T. Washington a great revolutionary, educator reformer Negro leader, who founder and remained  President of Tuskegee Institute, which disseminated among Negroes the gospel of education of the head, heart and hand and thus broke the  barriers of bondage through which Negroes were crushed for ages physically, educationally, mentally , socially and spiritually. Booker T. Washington died in 1915 when Dr. Ambedkar was in America and passed his M.A. degree. Dr Ambedkar learnt from the life story of Booker T. Washington the spirit of fight for the cause of freedom of his brethren untouchables, who were treated even worse than Negroes, in Indian society.
G)      John Dewey( 1859-1952): - John Dewey was his mentor at Columbia University, whose philosophy helped shape Dr. Ambedkar towards a critical analysis of the hard problems facing the society. He advocated dynamic and pragmatic approach to drive the humanity out of the troubles it was confronted with. Both criticized the old philosophers, who advocated idealism and other obsolete things. John Dewey methods of inquiry had influenced Ambedkar to deal with hard and painful situations. Both were practical political scientists, so paid pointed attention to practical rather than mere academic politics. Ambedkar learnt from Dewey’s emphasis on education as means to change the world and not only to understand it. Both believed that Education should be capable of creating human values having universal application. Both established them selves on everyday life of an average man in their respective country. Dr. Ambedkar  association with John Dewey provided the basis for a systematic  study and analysis of problems relating to politics, economics, society religion and history . Ambedkar concluded that a society is equally if not more, aggressive and tyrannical than the Government is based on deep study of these subjects.
H)         J.S. Mill ( 1806-1873): - Dr. Ambedkar was greatly influenced from the writing of Mill, a British philosopher, political economist, and civil servant. One of the most influential thinkers in the history of classical liberalism, he contributed widely to social theorypolitical theory, and political economy He had advocated freedom of thought, freedom of speech and freedom of action. Mill’s philosophy molded the political philosophy of Ambedkar.
I)           Justice Ranade ( 1842-1901): - Life and work storey of Justice Mahadev Govind Ranade, father of Indian Socio- political revolution casted a great influence on Dr Ambedkar. Dr Ambedkar was called upon to deliver 101 birth anniversary address of Justice Ranade which fell on 18th January1940. Dr Ambedkar learnt about Ranade, when he retrieved from the old papers of his father, a petition drafted by Justice Ranade against banning recruitment of Mahars into Indian Army in 1892. Philosophy of Justice Ranade was summed up Dr. Ambedkar himself as
A) We should not hold ideals purely imaginary.
B) In politics sentiments and temperaments of the people are more important than intellect and theory.
 C) In political negotiations the rule should be what is possible, that does not mean that we should be content with what is offered.
 Why Ambedkar agreed with the terms of Poona Pact of 1932 with Mahatma Gandhi and other Caste Hindus by sacrificing the benefits of the Communal Award can be accessed from his above said political philosophy.
I)     Karl  Marx (1818-1883AD):-  Dr. Ambedkar was also immensely  influenced by Karl Marx’s theory of class struggle as he was aware of the    merciless exploitation of the poor all over the world. But in India poor were exploited both by rich and Higher Caste Hindus alike. While explaining difference between Class and Caste Dr Ambedkar observed    “Downtrodden peoples of India are first to be fired and last to be hired”. Dr Ambedkar was of the firm view of uniting of the exploited peoples and make them realize being slaves, so they shall revolt against it. But Dr Ambedkar differed with Marx on the point that suffering was not only from the economic factors but from social factors as well. Ambedkar had experienced religious tyranny more severe and organized than state tyranny and poverty ridden upper caste Hindus were equally or even more cruel to wards poor untouchables
Crusader of Dalit Education:-Ambedkar was convinced that education besides being means of live hood was a powerful weapon to liberate the Dalits from ignorance and to strengthen their fight against injustice and humiliation.   He considered education as prequalification for any organization and movement of Dalits. So he gave his Golden  slogan to Dalits “Educate , Agitate and unite”  To prepare his peoples to safe guard their Human Rights through spread of  his message more effectively he  started Journals namely  Mook Nayak( Leader of the Dumb), Bahiskrit Bharat( Excluded India), Samta ( Equality) Janta (Peoples) . He picked up lessons from the strong note  of Bernard Shaw ,” Honest education is dangerous to tyranny and privilege; the system like Capitalist system kept in vogue the popular ignorance, Churches which depend upon it for priestly authority, privileged classes and ambiguous conquerors and dictators, who have to instill royalty and  romantic hero worship, all use ignorance and education as underpinning for general faith in themselves as rulers” So  to negate the ill effects of illiteracy of his peoples and to equip them with quality  education he opened Mallind Mahavidhalaya Aurangabad( Maharasthra,  );Sidharath College Of Commerce And Economics Bombay; and Siddhartha Law College Bombay. Ambedkar built his house “Raj Girah” in Bombay to house a library. 
 Gadge Ji Maharaj (1876-1956) :- Gadge Baba’s  the father of  Indian cleanliness Drive(Swachata Abhiyan) had a great influence on the life of Dr. Ambedkar. Gadge Ji Maharaj advised Dr. Ambedkar to leave Hindu religion as it was immune to reform, but at the same time not to join Christianity or Islam. Gadge Baba  dedicated Sant Chokhamela Dharmashala, Pandharpur to Dr Ambedkar for his love for Dr Ambedkar. This Dharmshalla ( Night Sheltter) was constructed Baba Gadge Ji from the  money he eaned from his work of cleaning the villages where ever he  went to conduct Satsangs.
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 The Author  :-Er.H.R.Phonsa can be contacted on hrphonsa@gmail.com
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