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Surely, originally yours

india Updated: Sep 10, 2012 23:04 IST
PP Wangchuk
PP Wangchuk
Hindustan Times
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My conscience compels me to write this as a response to a friend’s article on the art of plagiarism that is a ‘done thing’ now-a-days; that only a few are caught and a majority escapes free of their “sinful act”.

There is no idea in world that is not stolen. Similarly, there is nothing in the world what we call ‘original’!

Everything is/was there and we only find it, discover it and use/misuse it as ‘original’. An idea too is not original; and my idea is not my idea. It just comes out of my mind because I had heard it, read it once upon a time. True, I may not be consciously aware of this. But now I am the master and I churn them out as “original” and my own.

Laurence J Peter says, “Originality is the fine art of remembering what you hear but forgetting where you heard it.” And it is heartening to know that great writers like C S Lewis says, “Even in literature and art, no man who bothers about originality will ever be original: Whereas if you simply try to tell the truth, you will, nine times out of ten, become original without ever having noticed it.”

My contention is nobody has the right to claim that a particular idea is/was his; he never had it until he got it somehow, somewhere just as I did. And now an honest confession: I have ‘stolen’ all that I wrote all these years; and yet my mind and soul have given me a “clean chit” for doing a fine job of judicious imitation that is “far off” the original.

Wait, mistakes are the only universal form of originality. But this too is a blatant plagiarisation, but I don’t remember who said it! And yet, I remain, originally yours, without any compunction!