Humans are mortal. So are ideas. An idea needs propagation as much as a plant needs watering. Otherwise both will wither and die.

B.R. Ambedkar quote explanation

This quote draws a parallel between the mortality of human beings and the perishability of ideas, emphasizing the importance of propagation or dissemination for the survival and vitality of ideas. Here’s a breakdown of the key elements in the quote:

  1. “Humans are mortal. So are ideas”:
    • This statement establishes a parallel between the mortality of humans and the perishability of ideas. Mortality refers to the state of being subject to death, and the quote suggests that ideas, too, are not immune to a form of “death” or obsolescence.
  2. “An idea needs propagation”:
    • This phrase introduces the central idea that the survival and flourishing of an idea depend on its propagation or spread. Propagation refers to the act of transmitting or disseminating the idea to others.
  3. “As much as a plant needs watering”:
    • The analogy compares the need for an idea to be propagated with the necessity of watering a plant. Watering is essential for the growth and sustenance of a plant, and the comparison suggests that propagation is similarly crucial for the health and longevity of an idea.
  4. “Otherwise both will wither and die”:
    • This part of the quote concludes the analogy, emphasizing the potential consequences of neglecting the propagation of ideas. If an idea is not shared, discussed, or spread, it may stagnate, lose relevance, and eventually become obsolete—similar to a plant withering without proper care.
  5. Highlighting the Transience of Ideas:
    • By stating that both humans and ideas are mortal, the quote underscores the transient nature of ideas. It implies that ideas, like living beings, have a life cycle and are susceptible to decay or fading away if not actively nurtured.
  6. Encouragement for Communication and Discourse:
    • The quote can be seen as an encouragement for open communication, discussion, and the sharing of ideas. It suggests that ideas thrive when they are disseminated, debated, and passed on, fostering intellectual growth and evolution.

In summary, this quote uses the analogy of plant watering to convey the idea that ideas, like living organisms, require active propagation for their survival and continued relevance. It underscores the importance of sharing and disseminating ideas to prevent them from withering and becoming obsolete over time.

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