Wednesday, 26 March 2014

Old yet Gold!

   Err!! Too much of something is good for nothing. So let's kick aside grammar for a while and talk about something interesting.
    Something which is most talked about. Well the most talked about thing these days are the elections! But I would prefer to draw your attention towards a very interesting election process which I came across reading a book last week.Not Indian elections of course. Its one of the oldest election process to survive! Yes it's the "Papal Elections".
   This form of election is one of the most complex one and explaining it in total would take a lot of time so i would suffice you with an outline.
   Also known as the "Papal Conclave" it was first started with basic rules in 1059(almost 950 years ago!!). Going through innumerable changes in rules the basic framework is more or less the same.
   The process starts after 15-20 days of the death of the Pope (yes! They hold the Office till their death. Except 3 to 4 times since 1059) Cardinals chosen by the Pope and who are below 80 at the time of Conclave arrives at Rome. They are barred from any contact from outside world. The election takes place in the Sistine Chapel, Vatican City. At the time of elections the college of Cardinals are sealed in the Chapel, thus preventing them from any contact from outsiders. Once in, the complex process starts. After some secret rituals the balloting takes place in which each Cardinal must write the name of the member they wish to elect as Pope on a ballot and submit it to the dean (or the leader). To be elected as a Pope ,the candidate should require 2/3 of the votes.4 ballots takes place in one day and it goes on untill the next pope is elected

   Just for the fact,the biggest conclave ever recorded is the one in 1268. It went on from Nov 1268 to Sep 1271. Yes! Almost 3 years ( 3 cardinals actually died during the conclave). It has a very interesting story behind it but that can be awaited for now.

   Coming to the point , in modern times rules have been modified to make the election process a lot quicker. After the balloting is done and no one attains a majority, the ballots are burned with a chemical that emits black smoke outside the chimney. It notifies the world that no Pope is elected and they have to wait. And if a cardinal attains majority of votes then the ballots are burnt with a chemical that produces white smoke. Which notifies that the wait has ended, new Pope is elected! Once elected he becomes the leader of a billion Catholics around the world! Isn't that an interesting procedure!
   Now before leaving, just imagine this, In the upcoming PM elections in India ,on the election day ,all the PM probables (Mr.Modi,Mr.Gandhi,etc) are sealed in the parliament house and are subjected to Conclave procedure! Ha! The results would surely be lot entertaining than seeing John Cena, Batista, and The Undertaker inside a sealed Cage!

P.S.- Nothing mentioned in the last paragraph is going to happen, so a request for people above 18. "Do Vote" !

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