Posted November 2, 2010on:
It is not easy to agree with either side on the recent Ayodhya verdict, even if you start with the simple intent of siding with fairness, and none of the power and political agendas of those involved. It ultimately raises the question of the nature of Justice. Or quite simply, the right thing to do.
Were the judges right to divide the land equally, and avert the possible violence that may have erupted in case of a verdict favoring one side, and possibly saved lives? For what is more precious than a human life?
Is Justice a utilitarian principle, where the end is the greatest good of the greatest number of people?
But what of the man whose rights have been abused. Doesn’t Justice demand they be restored to him, against the entire world. Would one like to live in a system where ones rights are set aside for the majority?
Does Justice relate to some core rights of every human, that must be upheld at all costs? What are these core rights? Is injustice against a single person justified, for the sake of the rest? It reminds me of a tale i once read, where the prosperity of an entire society was dependent on eternal torment of a single individual. One can almost intuitively tell that this situation is inherently one of injustice.
Maybe we all have an intuitive sense of Justice. It certainly feels that way. Justice feels like a transcendent concept that we discover, rather than invent. Chomsky once remarked that the concept of Justice may be embedded human nature, and is a concrete, universal concept with some objectivity. I am somehow inclined to believe that the definition of Justice is to be found in the vision of how man wishes to create and define himself.
Not an easy question at all. No wonder so much has been written about it.