So I’m sitting here in COVID boredom (today, I loaded the dishwasher, got dressed, and drove over to pick up lunch. OH THE EXCITEMENT!), and I ran across an article on a new psychological concept of 6 Character Strengths and Virtues. Let’s talk about that, while I sit on the couch resting.
Wisdom and Knowledge
This is a hard one. For Knowledge, I would pick Saif Ali Khan, he is universally acknowledged as the most well-read and broadest in interests. But he doesn’t always show wisdom, which is a whole different thing. I think I would go for Mahesh Bhatt actually. For Knowledge, you can just look at his filmography to see the range of interests he has. For Wisdom, you can look at the way he talks about his recovery from addiction, the way he skillfully invisibly handled political issues as head of the Producers Association, all kinds of things.
Swara Bhaskar. I love her so much. And she is fearless, she goes ahead and says what she thinks and doesn’t care what the ramifications are.
Salman Khan. I know, this sounds crazy and you may push back on me about this one. But he just really loves, like, humanity. He is not wise, he is not courageous even, certainly doesn’t care about justice, temperance, or transcendence. But MAN is he human! Literally gives the shirt off his back to random strangers who come up to him in the street.
Aditya Chopra. He’s totally logical and smart and clear, and his word is his bond. A little bit heartless maybe? Like, he’s not always going to be kind, and he won’t always make the wise move or the courageous move, but he will always be fair.
Anil Kapoor. I was gonna say Hrithik, but then I thought that temperance also means not being too temperate. Anil eats, works out, spends time with family, does everything in perfection moderation, the ideal movie star.
Imtiaz Ali. He only cares about beauty, no courage, no wisdom, no justice, no humanity, no temperance, just pure beauty in any form that he can find it.
Now, as an SRKian, I have to point out that I truly think he excels in each of these 6 areas and I could make an argument for each one. Which is why I didn’t let myself pick him for any of them.
Now the other half! Let’s talk characters!
Knowledge and Wisdom
Shahrukh Khan as Juginder Khan. Finally I get to pick a Shahrukh character! He knows the right thing to say and what advice to give at all times.
Taapsee Pannu in Thappad. She made her own decisions against society, her family, even her own heart. And what can be braver than choosing to divorce while pregnant?
Salman Khan in Bajrangi Bhaijaan. Had to be a Salman role! And I think this is by far his best one. He just loves people and doesn’t care or think about anything else.
Amitabh Bachchan in Sarkar. Too bad the sequels were so sucky, because that moment in the original when he orders death to his own son as punishment for his crimes is sooooooo powerful.
Vikrant Massey in Cargo. He is a powerful extra strong demon, but he never lets go of his emotions, his powers, his anything. He has learned to take joy in a small life, not without an excess of anything, pleasure or pain.
Ranveer Singh in Gully Boy. Total transcendence, rises above all circumstances, all everything, in pursuit of art.
Okay, what did you think?