MIDWAY: Mind your head

What is more important — the form of one’s head or the ‘content’ inside it? ‘The content’ would perhaps be the usual answer. After all, the so-called faculties like thought, reason, intelligence, intellect, psyche and mind reside inside head. In this regard, does the shape of one’s head have any rapport vis-à-vis the ‘quality of content’ inside? No, most certainly. All the same, not all would head-on agree on the head matter.

A headmaster, in Zhengzhou of China, has his way of selecting pupils: he accepts only kiddies having ‘round skulls”, as a local belief dictates that perfectly ‘round’ skulls are a sign of intelligence and precociousness. The headmaster assuredly dishes out a heady logic on the head affair: when it comes to achievement in life — in domains all and sundry — such children will be head and shoulders above those who are not gifted with round heads!

Well, some might readily side with the headmaster, and cite enthusiastically some indisputable examples: Wow! That’s amazing. Look at Einstein! The great hirsute scientist has a relatively, if not perfectly, round head. Mahatma Gandhi has a perfectly round head full of non-violence. So does Winston Churchill, full of humour. And Nelson Mandela, too, has a harmoniously round head. And while we are on the subject of China, does not Mao have a round head?

And if a portrait on nepalhomepage.com is any indication, our very own great poet Laxmi Prasad Devkota has a round head too. Well, the list can never be exhaustive. But then, the whole ‘head thing’ pales into insignificance when genius having not-so-round heads thunder from history: who on earth dares to ignore Shakespeare, the Bard who has a gracefully long head? And Leonardo Da Vinci? Picasso? Lincoln? Bertrand Russell? Tolstoy? Osho? Once again, the list can hardly be comprehensive!

Hopefully, schools around the world will not someday start accepting students based on the shapes of their heads. Schools will be an utter bore if ‘dunce and genius’ categories of heads start popping up right from the beginning. Curiously, parents too will have a new bee in their bonnet and review their preference — girls or boys — round-headed babies are the bee’s knees.