Who is a scholar?
A widely read person is a scholar. But a creative writer (creator hereinafter) may not have such extensive study. Even without so-called formal education, an individual may be a creator. A scholar makes brilliant result in the examination. In other words, score is the yardstick of a scholar.
The more marks, the more scholar an individual is. On the other hand, a creator, generally, cannot make good result and even sometimes fails to qualify in the examination. He becomes a drop out. His successful failure paves his way to be a creator. He prefers the life of a vagabond. Perhaps, failure renders an individual to be a creative writer. Thus, disqualification is his qualification.
A scholar has thirst for knowledge. But a creator feels to create something new. Both of them try to increase knowledge. A scholar continues his study to widen the horizon and spectrum of his knowledge. He can do anything to acquire knowledge. For that reason he undertakes painstaking endeavor to realize his ambition. A creator also starts his study like a scholar. But in the mid-way creativity disturbs his attention towards studies and leads him to do something new thus rendering him a diverted genius.
And finally a creator fails in the examination due to lack of preparation. Thus a creator ultimately becomes a misguided missile. He lacks in hard reality. He has no foresight. He wastes valuable time of childhood and seldom thinks its future consequences. This deficiency caused by negligence and childish whims can never be compensated in future. Such callousness offers him lifelong pain till he breadths his last. Misfortune dogs him wherever he goes. As such unguarded childhood is a curse. A creator is such a cursed victim. None laughs for him. Rather everybody laughs at him.
Thus he dies unpaid. Thus he dies unfed.
Thus he dies unwept. Thus he dies unsung.
And he thus dies unknown as well like other nameless thousands of the world. But a scholar makes brilliant result and paves his way towards temporal gain. However, both the scholar and the creator start with studies but the former finishes it while the latter leaves it. After successful completion of studies a scholar is awarded certificate from an educational institution but the creator does not get it since he does not complete the course rather he left the institution to make him free from the burden of ‘so-called formal education’, instead.
This certificate is the password of all future happiness.
It is the gate pass of dreamland. Everybody knows it except the creator. Here lies the tragedy of a creator. This is the irony of his Fate. They say a scholar works hard, but a creator hardly works hard. This assumption is not correct always. A creator also toils much, may be, for classical return.
Everybody cares and respects a scholar. But a creator is ignored. He has innovative power. Imaginative faculty of mind agitates him much. So he is compelled to forget his mundane existence. Wild flights of fancy chase him from one galaxy to another. As a result, a creator fails everywhere in this world and becomes a laughing stock. He has business having no return at all.
This is the sad story of a backward society.
In an enlightened society creators are valued much. History is full of successful and respected creative writers. Scholarly writing is pregnant with facts. Creative writing is enriched with flair. As such, writing of a scholar lacks imagination but full of information. A scholar, in fact, is always guided by reference. But no reference is the preference of a creator since his writings are based mostly on hearsay. Thus creative writing is akin to and alias of hearsay writing. A scholar always pays attention for chronological and systematic representation of writings. But the talent of a creator is scattered.
In every sphere of life we expect consistency. We hate inconsistency since it has no exchange value. But consistency is the manifestation of artificiality already in man. On the other hand, inconsistency is the outcome of natural trait of an individual. The nature itself is inconsistent in its nature and behavior. For example, the sun rises in the east and sets in the west. But both sunrise and sunset do not happen at the same time.
Everyday, the time of occurrence, changes. A man who, everyday, comes in time has to face much trouble. Every morning does not dawn to him at a particular point of time. Also every morning does not appear and welcomes with identical problems. So to reach in time he has to deprive himself from enjoyment and engagement from other events. As such to maintain continuity one has to face many hurdles which remain unknown to us.
Inconsistency faces no such troubles. Spontaneity is the alias of inconsistency. Inconsistency needs no practice. It is quite natural like a spring of the mountain. But one has to practice much to be a consistent artist, i.e., an artificial individual. A scholar, basically, is a consistent person. His consistency may not show equality always. In the worst case, he may be inconsistently consistent. Thus whatever the case may be in the activity of a scholar, there must be an essence of consistency at least.
But a creator is very whimsical. He is a vagabond. In fact a creator is an inconsistent individual by birth. He will, either be consistently inconsistent or, in most of the cases, he is inconsistently inconsistent. In real life, consistency has immense value. There is no substitute for consistency. In fact consistency itself is its substitute. A scholar has to mind many things. A creator has no such bindings. He writes of his own. Innumerable and various thoughts, like the careless waves of the sea, flash in his mind’s easel ceaselessly. His creation is the manifestation of inspired writing.
He writes to get relief through catharsis. But a scholar experiences no such pain to get relief. Another school of thought disagrees with this doctrine. Writing either way creative or scholarly is an enjoyable experience. Even scholarly writers love doing their writing as they are creating something new of their own. A creator reads little, thinks more and hears most. As such his writings are akin to hearsay writing.
He argues that a scholar writes basing on his own experience. But hearsay writing is the outcome of many men’s opinion. He hears and writes accordingly. So he saves time and remains free from hazards of reading. Now if a scholar intends to write on what people say, firstly, he will read those books read by the mass and then he will write. It is a time consuming and painstaking venture. It is the credit of the scholar that he does not rely on third party’s casual talks. A creator practices hearsay writing. He honors third party’s opinion. He believes in democracy and thereby right to speech.
But a creator seldom writes whatever he hears. For, he does not practice journalism. He hears, thinks over the matter and then writes in the light of literary essence. A scholar writes and gives references. Sometimes the length of references is more than the length of article itself. The scholar claims credit but fixes liability upon the references. Similarly, in hearsay writing prize goes to creator but punishment is imposed upon the public at large.
It is quite an interesting and safe game played and enjoyed by both scholar and creator. A scholar may write scholarly notes on demand. But a creator cannot write on compulsion. In fact, innovations of a creator cannot be regulated or controlled by demand and supply theory of economics. Appearance or disappearance of imaginations obey no rule at all. Rather they break all barriers and cross all boundaries as are faced with. They are so whimsical rendering a creator bohemian in character.
Thus bohemian whimsicality isolates a creator from reality.
A creator may be a scholar through extensive study. But a scholar may not be a creator. Creativity cannot be acquired by practice; rather it is a gift man gets by birth. Some critics disagree with this assumption. They contend that a scholar cannot be a creator within the strict boundaries of which he has to write scholarly articles. However, he also can interchange to a role of a creator with creative writing.
Being a scholar doesn’t come at the expense of losing creativity. A scholar is a biased person. He, generally, is influenced by knowledge, i.e., other men’s thoughts. Thus acquired knowledge kills his clarity of thought and thereby his originality. As such his innovative power is defeated by the giant knowledge. A scholar beats everybody’s drum except his own. But a creator always beats his own drum. He seldom beats other person’s drum. He is so undaunted and a confident person.
Another school of thought argues that scholars depend on references to cite what has been done or known previously on a topic. Still, what is published would be his own interpretation of things. If scholars are not creative where would all the progress of science and technology come from? This world is for scholar of scholar by scholar. So everywhere we see the infrastructure of manufacturing scholars. So creators are unwanted in a society that lacks in aesthetic essence. That’s why only a scholar gets scholarship. Because the scholars build the nation.
If it is so, then another school of thought argues that creators are the ornament of a nation. Thus scholars are the builders of a building and creators are its decorators. So a scholar is a civil engineer but a creator is an architect. Thus scholars are must for the nation. But creators are optional. Because, without architectural or aesthetic beauties a building can stand erect. So scholars are rewarded and creators die unfed. Thus to give scholarship to a creator is nothing but wastage of money. So society spends for scholars only. A scholar needs dollar. Conversely, dollar makes scholar. However, if a scholar is a national scholar then a creator is a rational scholar.
But creator is superior to scholar. In fact where scholarship ends, creativity begins. For example, an aero plane runs in the runway before take-off. Here running ends with the flight of imagination. A scholar gathers knowledge from book. He is a mobile library, a ready reference. But a creator learns gazing at the sky, observing a hill or horizon or ocean, i.e., nature is his teacher.
As such unobstructed view of the sky, robustness of mountain, distance of horizon, vastness and depth of ocean influence and perplex him much and he becomes indifferent. A creator always feels to communicate what he feels. So he expresses simply so that everybody can realize what he says. But a scholar is a man of complex mind. His allusion may not easily be understandable. Also he has no commitment to communicate his high thoughts. So the contribution of a scholar is the so-called ‘large still books’ which remain unread. Lord Buddha, Lord Christ, Prophet Mohammed, etc., were all creators.
They had no so- called formal education. But they were naturally learned by birth. They appeared in this world with greatness already in them. They preached wise and immortal sayings to the world and saved the ailing humanity thereby. Thus, a creator is naturally learned. They say natural learning is good but at sometimes it is at the cost of social unrest. More people kill each other on religious differences than anything else.
A scholar, on the other hand, has to acquire knowledge. As such, a novice attends an Alma-Mater and becomes a scholar. So, a scholar is an artificial learned. For example, a duckling can swim. But a human baby cannot. It has to acquire the art of swimming. In creative writing there must not be any influence of other school of thoughts. But a scholarly writing is fully pregnant with different thoughts of his predecessors. So a 100% creator is seldom born. But 100% scholar is abundant in the world. There must be shadow of external influence that devours, like an eclipse, the spontaneity of a scholar.
Thus reading means to increase knowledge as well as invasion of other thoughts. A scholar considers the voice of a book final. But a creator values his own choice. So he declines to confess the sayings of a book, rather he likes to preach his own views without being influenced by the news of a book. As such a creator reads very cautiously lest he be influenced by other school of thoughts. Now he who wants to be a scholar should be absorbed in studies freely without any tension but with great attention.
A scholar compiles a dictionary. He explains the meaning of the words which are chronologically arranged in a definite manner. But a creator interprets the meaning of any word from a different point of view. His way of representation has rare individual style. This different angle of view and new light illuminates the dark avenue to reach an un- trodden destination. Thus this endeavor kindles the imagination of an inquisitive heart. A 100% creator dies unfed, unwept, unsung and unknown as well due to lack of practical experience. A 100% scholar communicates only with another 100% scholar. As such his friends are numbered.
In fact a scholar is a reserve personality.
This theoretical assumption suffers from serious criticism. One cannot give numbers and it’s grossly wrong to assign and thereby grade scholarship and creativity measuring through percentage scale. There is nothing called 100% on these issues like IQ measurement. Basically a bad scholar and a bad creator may die unfed and unappreciated while the good ones shine through no matter what path of writing they practice.
Degree of reference, in a scholarly writing, is the yardstick of measuring the talent of a scholar. The more reference the more scholar, the less reference the less scholar. Similarly no reference means no scholar. In fact a scholar lives with reference and dies with reference. He cannot think anything without reference. To him no reference is also a reference, like no politics is also a politics or no style is also a style or no statistics is also statistics or no expectation is also an expectation, or nothingness implies everything or no existence means staying elsewhere beyond our knowledge as well. Many would disagree with this high opinion.
On the other hand, reference is considered as the demerits of a creator. Scholarly writing is quite stereotyped. Also there should be room for diversity in scholarly writing as well. All scholars, generally, use the same data of reference. As such scholarly writings may have similarities with each other. This is due to the so-called fact that great men think alike. In other words all the roads lead to Rome. But creative writing differs with each other.
They differ even on any definite topic. They think not alike. So they are not great. As such, they follow no rule at all, rather break the rules. But a scholar is strict in obeying established rules while he writes anything. Research means to agree or disagree with the existing school of thoughts. If a researcher agrees, then further extension of idea crowns him with doctoral degree. But if he disagrees then, to be laurelled, he is liable to prove the wrongs of existing theory and must propose his idea with validity.
A scholar seldom contributes but, generally, agrees with his predecessors. As such he mentions references in support of his claim. But a creator disagrees always. So he has no liability to site examples. Thus, a scholar when disagrees and pleads for new ideas becomes a creator. A creator goes ahead with a hypothesis. He tries to establish it. If he fails, he modifies it and ultimately finds the truth i.e., the theory. So, he uses no reference at all. But his works are used as reference by the scholars to get Ph.D. Reference is a must to prepare a doctoral thesis. If any scholar does not give references then the reviewers will reject the thesis forthwith without examination in spite of having sufficient merit. The creator does not use reference and remains unrewarded.
But giving of references is nothing but simply mentioning the name of the books or journals. It adds no contribution at all in the whole thesis. Yet the reviewers need it. Thus it is a severe punishment to a creator merely for a venial offence. In school or college, during examination, the students do not give any reference while they write the answers. Also the teachers don’t need any reference while they examine the answer scripts.
The creator considers it as norms. To him a thesis is nothing but the answers of a problem defined. This is an agreed paradox of the critic. Yet, published scholarly literature is concise and needs to be focused and the reader should have the right to independently assess and verify what the author is presenting. So the transparency of scholarly with references need not be seen as a demerit. The creator respects the reviewers as learned.
To him reviewers are always versatile genius having infinite wisdom. Their spectrum of knowledge is much wide both horizontally and vertically with diversification. He thinks that the reviewers are always busy to update themselves with latest knowledge. So he finds no justification to mention the reference i.e., the source of knowledge to the highly knowledgeable critic-cum- reviewers. Mathematicians deal with necessary and sufficient condition of any theory. They also mention the limitation of any idea.
Similarly, if knowledge be the necessary condition to be a reviewer or critic then updating work is the sufficient condition and is a must for examination of any thesis. At this present age of fast development of technologies and knowledge, a reviewer without updated knowledge, will merely become a novice or marginal player who should not be burdened with the important task and responsibility of examining a thesis. But the funny thing is that the educational institutions engage such novices as examiner who naturally needs the references which they use as torch to illuminate the darkness and reach their unknown area of study and knowledge.
Mathematicians are the most creative people ever. However to prove their theorems and formulae they have to stick to a rigid form of writing. Still, that enables them to communicate to a fellow mathematician in a language they understand. Sticking to rigid methods of presentation of information and loss of creativity are not synonymous. A scholar copies and gives reference. When number of reference is less it is called ‘plagiarism’. Unfortunately, a novice scholar is blamed as a ‘plagiarist’.
But huge number of references crown such a’ plagiarist’ as a researcher. So little stealing is called theft but much stealing is called research. Thus, through stealing, a researcher becomes an expert. Now the question arises – who is an expert? They say, an expert is one who complicates simple things. An expert, to prove his expertise, can convert complex into simple and simple into complex at ease. Thus experts are of two types namely complex expert and simple expert respectively. The complex expert laughs at an innocent heart for its foolishness and helplessness and thereby enjoys sadistic pleasure through complicacy.
Between the two the simple expert is, however, better than the complex one. A creator is free from all such allegations of plagiarism or expertise. There are two types of people. One knows something of everything and the other one knows everything of something. The former one is an amateur. He is merely a novice having superficial knowledge on any topic between heaven and earth. The other one is a specialist and a professional one. He can talk on the concerned specific field hours after hours.
To show his expertise he can write on statistics without any statistics. Reference is a hurdle. An author can describe anything with suitable example without mentioning reference. This helps a lay reader and even a scholar to grasp any matter easily. This method paves the way to enjoy pleasure of reading thereby offers relaxation at leisure moments. A good writer knows what to write and a great writer knows what not to write. Further, there are two types of writers. One finds pleasure when the reader understands his writing. But the other class likes to remain obscure. It is a fact that he who realizes any matter clearly can explain it lucidly.
A scholar enjoys much when his writings remain not understandable to others. It may be merits of a scholar but demerits or misfortune of a reader. But a creator enjoys immense and intense heavenly delight when the reader enjoys his feeling. He feels akin to the readers. Thus a creator wants to share his ideas and thoughts. But a scholar keeps safe distance, lest he should come close. Further, there are two types of writings namely writing before reading and writing after reading. A scholar at first reads then writes.
But a creator writes without reading.
He reads if he likes. He reads not if he likes not.
Thus to him reading is quite optional. As a result the creation of a creator has three outcomes. The first outcome is similar to an existing school of thought. In this case he contributes nothing but wins the crown of a great man. For, great men think alike. So, without reading or knowing nothing a man becomes great through ignorance. Ignorance is a blessing. A creator or a novice writer is thus divine blessed.
This is quite a noble and warm feeling. In the second case the writing is dissimilar to others. Then it is called creation. In the third case the writing signifies nothing or quite rubbish. As such it is thrown into the dustbin. But the creator argues that the present scholars can’t realize the inner meaning of his so called obscured matter. But the scholars of future must illuminate this dark assertion. A scholar is a matured person. As such he is calm and humble by nature. But a creator is quite restless just like the spring of a mountain.
A scholar dies of heart attack due to excessive pressure of facts, figures and theories. But a creator, generally, leads a long life due to absence of cares and anxieties as faced by a knowledgeable scholar. Obviously, there is exception of this fact. A scholar becomes biased through reading. All his thoughts are channeled as per existing thoughts. He seldom deviates from the existing standards which he considers as unchangeable. He is afraid of deviation. To him deviation means demolition.
Thus he is self imprisoned. Much study renders him a rigid character. The more studies the more rigidity. Thus he becomes an orthodox or conservative like a communist. A communist is hurt if he is blamed for his strict discipline. In fact he suffers from and thereby enjoys holding instinct aroused from obsolete doctrines. But a creator is a flexible one. He appreciates that variety is the spice of life. He changes his opinion with the change of time. His change occurs very quickly. As such to him time never freezes. Thus a creator is molded very easily. He says that there is no basic difference between the two sentences, viz., he may come or he may not come. He explains that he may come means, he may not come also.
Similarly, he may not come means that he may come as well. The former expresses the affirmation and the latter being the negation one, i.e., it simply expresses the tendency of uncertainty instead of certainty of a concerned individual. In an appointment letter of any job the statement of employer is either of two types namely (i) Appointment is hereby given to the concerned candidate. Or (ii) Appointment is hereby given to the candidate concerned. A scholar finds no difference between these two sentences. But the creator begs to differ. He argues that in the first case the word ‘concerned’ is the adjective of the noun ‘candidate’ who is a person of choice of the authority even in spite of having low profile. But in the later case it is just reverse. In fact, an ill motive plays behind such first type of appointment. Thus, the first category allegedly suffers from nepotism and the second one stands for fair selection. Because in case of second type the candidate is unknown till the selection process is completed.
Rather the candidate is selected considering all factors. In case of first instance the candidate is known and selected already prior completion of selection process. Thus this interview is like a got up game whose Fate is already fixed. As such the interview is merely an eye wash and thereby a farce to obey the law just to disobey it thereby proving so-called obedience.
Criminology pleads that a criminal must leave at least a single clue. And it is identified from the clues it leaves. Here the clue is ‘concerned candidate’ instead of ‘candidate concerned’. Now it seems clear that in the first case the candidate was selected earlier before the selection process which was merely eyewash. But in the second case the candidate was unknown before selection and was selected observing due formalities and maintaining transparency. Now an investigator can detect at ease the psychology of subconscious mind of the biased and partial interviewer. Also the biased interviewer while fails to offer appointment to their own candidate submits the report stating ‘NFS’ i.e., none found suitable paving the way for future nepotism.
A good student does not write different things. But he writes differently. Similarly, the difference thus manifested by the creator is a product of his unique, uncommon and individual style. A scholar shows his highest aptitude as a critic. He is a judge of literary or artistic merit. He shows his expertise as a professional reviewer. Besides these a critic is also a fault-finder. But criticism becomes lively only when it is constructive and helpful. But the critical critic seldom bothers it. For, he warms his ego through sadistic pleasure.
They say, he who can does, on the contrary, he who can’t criticizes. As such a critic is hardly seen to create something. The wearer knows where the shoe pinches. The barefooted critic has no shoe, thereby remains safe from pinching. But who will be so dare devil to find fault with a learned critic? Generally, a critic should describe the merit or demerit of any writing sympathetically. This helpful criticism encourages new writers to write more successfully.
But novice writers die immature due to merciless criticism. Tact of omission is an art of a creator. But this art becomes a dangerous weapon to the critics since they interpret as per their sweet will with far-stretched meaning. Sometimes the critic becomes interested to express more what the writer did not think at all. In many cases the critic opines the opposite view or completely a new one. The criticism becomes dangerous when the writer throws little light on any dark assertion, thus allowing the readers to enjoy liberal thinking.
In such a case the critic enjoys the full liberty and jumps accordingly with full enthusiasm to explain an obscure matter. Here lies the merit and demerit of democracy. However, sometimes, to acquire cheap popularity, a critic becomes interested more in what is not told than told. Thus degree of scholarly criticism depends on the success of exaggeration, manufacturing of the untold and unheard doctrine as well.
A literary piece is the outcome or exposure of emotion. Emotion may have base but have no brake at all. A novice writer may not have both base and brake. As a result the output is diverted from its main objective and becomes the prey of digression. Digression is seen everywhere.
Every literary product is more or less affected by undesired fact or events. These facts sometimes enrich the literary piece. An expert and experienced writer can control its presence. But a novice writer fails brake and his writing suffers from the excessiveness of digression. However, every author knows digression very well except an editor. An editor edits. He edits all and everything. He is busy to do this round the clock.
He accepts anything in the morning and may reject the same in the evening. Thus his mood and motif is gloriously uncertain. He knows both quantum mechanics and quality control as well. As such they say pen is mightier than sword. But the paradox is that this all rounder genius seldom writes. He is afraid of writing lest it is rejected. So he never writes and remains free from criticism. Thus he is ignorant of the power of digression.
Digression defeats the author with its immense capacity and takes shelter in the writing quite in his unaware. But the editor readily rejects the superfluous elements seems to be unrelated. This hurts the writer. The author becomes frustrated when any of his submission is declined to publish for the presence of irrelevant elements. Sometimes digression is considered as social document and allusion as well.
An editor hankers after commercial success. While a writer worships classical success. Both dwell in two different poles diagonally opposite to each other. Here lies their uniqueness in their different point of views. The moralist believes in the principle, “Art for life’s sake”. The antithesis being, “Art for Art’s sake” hankers after Aesthetic movement whose followers believe in the cult of Beauty, or the enjoyment of beauty for its own sake. Perhaps the creator has equal respect to both the doctrines, the brainchild of the scholars. He believes in classical success instead of commercial one.
It seems didactic fragrance destroys the classical essence of a writing. In English grammar there are two types of articles namely definite and indefinite. Truth is always one. But lies are many. A teacher advises, speak the truth and never tell a lie. Thus definite article, ’the’ is used before the truth. But, indefinite article,’ a’ is used before a lie. The proverb goes many men, many minds. As such different critics explain a single matter differently and independently. Great men think alike. But in many cases the critics seldom think alike. As a result more than one meaning are found in the market on a single issue. Thus so many scholars deal with so many lies. Wisdom is the glamour of a learned scholar.
Through serious study, constant meditation and continuous experience he becomes wise. A creator becomes a scholar when he uses reference. Similarly, a scholar becomes a creator without using any reference. So a man may be 100% scholar or 100% creator or ‘cocktail’ of both in different proportion. Perhaps both of them dwell at the threshold of creativity and scholarship.
They say if there would have been only creators then progress and scientific advancement wouldn’t have reached where our world is now today. Though there are a lot many reference holding writers but all are not in the same boat. However, it seems, both the scholar and the creative writer are complementary to each other for the advancement of the civilization.
Now it seems clear that Shakespeare is a creator but he who has read all his writings is a Shakespearean scholar. The paradox is that a Shakespearean scholar, doing research on the immortal creations of Shakespeare, is awarded a Doctoral Degree, but Shakespeare, the creator himself, had no formal education beyond school. They say where goodness ends, greatness begins. In fact goodness of a scholar renders a nation good; on the other hand, greatness of the creator converts a nation great. As such, a good nation salutes a scholar. But a great nation welcomes a creator.
Kolkata/India Age: 57 Years, Author (Civil Servant in India & PhD Student)