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Re: Tenth Day of Danur Maasam: Thiruppavai & Artha Panchakam--Part 1

From: M K Sudarshan (sudarsan_at_batelco.com.bh)
Date: Mon Dec 23 1996 - 00:45:35 PST

I went through the following e-mail of Sriman Sadagopan and thought I would
take the liberty of giving him the open feedback he again seeks.

At 09:28 PM 12/22/96 EST, he wrote:
>Dear Bhakthi Group Memebrs :
>
>I am still not sure whether there is interest in these postings or not. 
>I hear back from a very few. I will go ahead and complete these two
>commitments and fade away ( for a while or longer ) to give you
>some rest .In the absence of any substantive feedback ,  I continue
>to write on the assumption some body out there is interested to 
>read these postings. 

I would like to reply to the above as follows :
Unlike the written or visual medium, where audience feed-back is certain to
be received,  there is no such assurance in the i-net medium. People 'hook'
on to their mail-screens, scan the day's mail, pick out the ones they would
like to read sometime later during the day and then "trash" the rest which
they think is "junk".

It may not always be realistic to expect constant "feed-back". But the
"absence of feed-back" is not to be deemed "non-existence" of feed-back. In
the case of Sriman Sadagopan there is abundant proof that people on the
Group enjoy his postings as it has the genuine flavour of a true Vaishnava
scholar steeped in its literature and lores. So when they see a posting from
Sriman Sadagopan on their screens they take it with the same amount of
"normalcy" as one would take the delivery of the morning's newspaper. They
may not respond to its contents by writing letters of "appreciation" or
"criticism" to him as one would perhaps do in "a letter to the editor" of a
newspaper but that does not mean they do not have feed-back to give.

As long as there is no overwhelming "negative feed-back" and as long as the
"mail-server owner" is not forced into "cutting connection" or
"excommunicating", every correspondent on a private mailing-list can rest
happy that at least "somebody out there" is reading his message.

That "somebody" may or may not like a posting, may or may not agree with its
contents, may or may not like to give "positive feed-back". But that
shouldn't bother anybody, least of all a deep scholar like Sriman Sadagopan. 

Beyond what I have mentioned above I don't think the 'i-net' medium can by
its inherent nature promise anything.  

Sriman Sadagopan further says:
I do not want to >steer these postings in the uncertain environment of
unclear interest.

My comments:
The very nature of the 'i-net' medium is that it is an "open and free"
forum. It was meant to be that way: to enable 'airing' of a wide
cross-section of views from as many quarters as possible.

The beauty of the medium is that, unlike as in the written or visual medium,
there are no "editorial departments" to "screen" or "censor" views and
opinions. While this unfettered "democracy" may sometimes lead to "unusual
views" also getting aired, there is however overall virtue in a situation
where everyone has an opportunity to give his views to the best of his
knowledge and experience. It may not be of "interest" to many; it may be
too, as Sriman Sadagopan says, of "unclear interest" to an "uncertain
environment" but it nevertheless enables the audience to form a wonderful
"synthesis" of all possible views in their own individual minds. In the
process they also get to know what is the "grain" which must be cherished
and what is the "chaff" that must be "junked".

Ultimately they --- all the "somebodys out there" on the net --- are the
final "judges" and it is up to them, individually, to decide what it is they
will regard with interest and curiosity and what they will "trash" by the
"click" of a mouse-button !! 

There is nothing one can do about that, for sure.

Personally, what I like about Sriman Sadagopan's postings are that they 

A) carry a wealth of information about our literature
B) are painstakingly written so as to be comprehensible to the average
reader   and not only to a few who are well-acquainted with "vedas" or
"prabhandhams" 
C) are remarkably free of any bias, prejudice or self-righteousness; are
relatable to our present times and problems of the world
D) done in a spirit of "nishkAma-karma", unselfishly, as it were, without
expecting anything in return ... except, perhaps, for a little honest
feed-back, now and then, from his readers. 

I will consider myself 'poorer' for his absence from the "list" whether it
is for for a short or long while !!

Isn't all this feedback enough, Sriman Sadagopan ?

>Please accept my best wishes for a happy holiday  season 
>and a peaceful , healthy New Year  1997. 
>
>V. Sadagopan

I wish Sri.Sadagopan on my own behalf a happy 1997.

sudarshan