I am fond of fables, especially the kind from the famous Brazilian writer Paulo Coelho, though I have also read those by Aesop, the Greek slave and tales collector. Transformation to adulthood cultivated an insouciance towards the juvenile tales from Aesop’s stable and found me fascinated with the  impassioned ecclesiastical and thought provoking stories by Coelho! While the Aesop’s tales are fascinating they are short, fictitious, useful to life and true to nature. In them we find animals and plants conversing, although humans do interact with humans and figure in a few ones. Typically they might begin with a contextual introduction, followed by the story, often with the moral underlined at the end.

Coelho’s simple words and subtle philosophy encompass reflections on solitude, the art of love, to parables on man’s struggles and journey through life. According to him his mission is to observe human beings; what they are and how they are, rather than what they want to be or pretend to be. Coelho’s writing is timeless. Appealing to a wide audience, his inspirational thoughts do touch few chords.

Sadly I have digressed from the intended objective in my euphemism to upthrust my preferred writer. Though in context to the contemporary posture we find ourselves we could ruminate over a few parables or fables to surmise the direction our Karma has decided for us. One such parable, The Pied Piper of Hamelin, as a  metaphor does analogise the similarity of events and personalities presently at the center stage of our interests. It is a popular fable, most must have read it, however, do read the abstract as presented and do deconstruct it, as (not) surprisingly  you may behold the story unfolding at your doorsteps!

“In 1284, while the town of Hamelin in Germany was suffering from plague due to a rat infestation. A piper dressed in multicolored clothing appeared, claiming to be a rat-catcher. He promised the people a solution to their problem with the rats. The people, in turn, promised to pay him for the removal of the rats. (According to some versions of the story, the promised sum was 1000 guilders.) The piper accepted and played his pipe to lure the rats into the river, where all but one drowned.

Despite the piper’s success, the people reneged on his promise and refused to pay him the full sum (reputedly reduced to a sum of 50 guilders) even going so far as to hint that he brought the rats himself in an extortion attempt. The piper left the town angrily, vowing to return later to take revenge. On Saint John and Paul’s day. while the Hamelinites were in church, the piper returned dressed in green like a hunter playing his pipe. In so doing, he attracted the town’s children. One hundred and thirty children followed him out of town and into a cave and were never seen again. Three children remained behind: One was lame and could not follow quickly enough, the second was deaf and therefore could not hear the music, and the last was blind and unable to see where he was going. These three informed the villagers of what had happened when they came out from church”.

The plague of poverty, penury, misery, inequality, discrimination, fear, insecurity, and so on is omnipresent be it in developed, developing or underdeveloped nations, though the extent may vary in degrees of spread, severity and gravity. In the developed and economically affluent countries where there are no hunger deaths social, religious, ethnic, racial, nationhood and political issues afflict and anguish the masses and in nations tormented with ubiquitous never ending destituteness and impoverishment, the burden  further adds to their misery!

In search for a resolution to their menacing troubles and high expectations, leaders of all shades and hue unfold to lead and  rescue their citizens; some are those who thrust themselves on the meek, few occupy the thrones through lineage and there are those where their citizens choose to elect them. While the former two by and large keep their interests over and above their recalcitrant subjects whom they rule the third is expected to improve and better the lives of their fellow citizens through good governance. We are considering those who derive benefits from democratically elected leaders. The vows and the promises pledged by such leaders during the elections are considered to be inviolable and have to be adhered to. By and large in the past the democratically elected leaders did provide relief to their countrymen though not to desired extent, they invariably  fell short of expectations of some of their brethren.

Capturing the present climate of restlessness and unquiet in their respective countries a new breed of helmsmen have stepped on the center stage to guide and lead their converts, they are  Anachronistic Pied Pipers! These Pipers profess to  have the solution for the’ plague’. They seek and communicate with vigor and elan their message that  would wipe out the plague.  In their effort to win over their audience they miss no opportunity to capture the raw bare sentiments and adultrate them with venom causing fear, divisiveness, hate and confrontation.Their theatrical rhetorics mixed with half truths and blatant errors appeal  to their audiences who lap it up, as they too have preconceived and latent misconceptions of their advantaged ethnicity and superior nationhood! These Pied Pipers on their pipes play the tunes which are sweet and melodious to their fans who have  voted them to lead them on the path of progress and glory. They are the converts who have been mesmerised and will follow the Anachronistic Pied Pipers as blindly as the rats followed the Pied Piper of Hamelin! The rats plunged into the river, it is any body’s guess where these converts would plunge!