By M. L. Raina
Time was when being a dissident meant being someone who does not swallow myths and shibboleths wholesale. My gospel then was not Marx but a slim volume by the American philosopher Barry Denham whose book Man Against Myth I read with religious zeal.
For me the time of dissidence is no more. I have reached a state of dissonance when everything sounds out of tune, out of rhythm for me.I have given up on hope, that overarching something that Ernst Bloch the Marxist philosopher regarded as the mainstay of human endeavour.That hope is now overtaken by the new mushroom cloud of despair hanging over all of us. A maverick East German poet Wolf Bierman,beset like me with the feelings of disconnectedness,wrote 'dreams that are still red/and not to be buried with our dead'. That was when he hoped that communism would survive. But when his hopes crumbled with the collapse of communism, he came out with: 'well, who preaches hope is a liar/ but he who kills hope/ is a pig/ and I do both and cry:/ please take what you need!/ too much would be unhealthy.'