LITTLE GYAN ON WHY LAW.

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Alright I got a few people asking me why there have been no updates on CG. Yes, you guessed right, we shall blame the hectic NALSAR schedule again. It’s just been a whirlwind tour, the last few days. Half of us have been in Calcutta. Another half is out on conferences and presenting papers. Asad, the man himself, is at Bangalore.Court-Gavel

So here’s the lone me on CG trying to write something to claim that we are able at multi-tasking.

Let’s get philosophical.

One must know why one is pursuing a certain course in life. For example, if you are a CLAT aspirant you need to know why exactly you want to pursue law. The inspiration behind the aspiration is of seminal importance. Why law? This is a question you shall be asked from Day 1 at law school and even at your recruitments or your SOPs for foreign applications or scholarship forms.

Is it because of the glam one associates with studying at a place like NALSAR or NLS? Is it the “your dream is my reality” feeling that spurs you on to a seat at the hallowed portals of these esteemed institutions? Or is the motivational factor big bucks—maybe the 15 lakhs pay package or the foreign law firm job paying you in pounds?

I may not have much locus standi to be pedantic on this issue and harangue you but is something everyone will tell you at law school, that law is such a vast body of knowledge with complications and complexities munificent that unless you really want to do the law, it shall be a very tough experience in your five years. Law school is not a place where you can pass your time in evanescent reveries while staring at the crepuscular sky. It is five year of sometimes sheer maddening hard work. You have to learn the law and love the law.

My own personal reason for doing law was simple. I loved the language, it being a forte of sorts for me, and I loved critical analysis and logical reasoning. Law therefore was just the right profession where the two are quintessential to better advocacy. Somewhere the point is just this: you need to want to do law, learn the law and if that leads you to a six figure pay packet surely that is wonderful but not do law for the package. The inherent problem in the latter being, you will fizzle out too soon. Law school is such an experience that it appeals to your higher reasoning and critical analytical skills.

Be sure that you want to do this. Five years is a long time. You should not question your decision even once.

See you at Justice City!

Best.

Sandipan De.

“It is a wise father that knows his own child.” – Shakespeare, Act II Sc.iii, The Merchant of Venice.

83 COMMENTS

  1. But how do we really know if we want to do law or not? I mean, maybe we do/ don’t now, but that can change, say, once we go to law school right? Are there any kinds of general/specific indicators that will tell us if law is our cup of tea?

    • Sadly – No. Learning law is never difficult. Loving law is. This will depend on loads of other factors as well – primarily – the people you come across.

    • Dude, your heart? That’s the indicator.

      1. You get the ”DAMN I WANT TO STUDY LAW” feeling. You know you have the spark BUT..
      2. Only if the feeling stays long enough and after proper rationalization and analyzation of all the pros and cons of studying law should you be sure of your actual interest.

      The underlying question is, if studying law came WITHOUT the perks and benefits, would you still study it? If yes, law is for you.

      I have friends, some of whom just want to enter any law college, some of whom would be fine even if they didn’t make it (their dads would get them into some donation engg college), some who simply love law and want to go to the best school and some who’re not even sure why they’re carrying their backpacks to career launcher everyday.

      Personally I changed my field from science (IIT) to commerce (SRCC) to law. It has been a year now, and I haven’t looked back.

      So I guess once you can be sure if your heart says you want to study law and not just become a lawyer. If you want to go to the law school to increase your knowledge, study what you love, win moots.. Or just while time away and socialize.
      But if you’re the Day1: ”I wanna be a laywer
      Day 2: No wait.. I think I wanna be a pilot” kinds.. You need to zero in on something!

      • ^ Just perfect answer.( by Pappu) Find out if you really really WANT to do law. Do you feel you CAN be good at it? Are you sure that you CAN actually develop yourself in all the skills required? Find out about the prospects of having a law degree. Explore more about the career option. Actually, you have to be good or at least have the potential of doing a lot of things. These include thinking well, communicating effectively, writing, advocating a cause, and writing proficiently. If you are good/can be good at these, you are fit for law school. If not, it’s time to rethink. Be honest to yourself. Contemplate. And then decide. All the best Shruthi. <3 🙂

    • @Shruthi. It is difficult to zero in on a particular skill set that shall be the indicator to your being a good lawyer. I mean an interest in business and commerce might make you a wonderful lawyer handling headline making M&A deals whereas you may just have hated everything else in your five year law course. There are some basic indicators: love for logical, critical, analytical reasoning, a love for trying to think out of the box solution to a mundane problem, flair for the language et. al. But then if you are hell bent on doing law and say that’s all I want to be, yes, a lawyer. Then just nothing can prevent you. I always quote Balzac on this: “None is greater that what you can become.”

  2. your dream my reality???
    somewhere the point is just this???….
    fie sandeepan…i thought you of all people would share credit

    • Amulya, the fact that I have internalised that woman is in itself a lasting tribute to her. One thing that made NALSAR mean what it does to me is that lady. Credit is due to that woman. But I was of the opinion that citing her here would mean nothing to CLAT aspirants who are yet to meet the best legal faculty that there is in India. Rather my peers would definitely understand that the phrase can only refer to her, the great one, Prof. Amita Dhanda. You know while I was walking back from Amma today after my usual , you know what, she was passing down the road in her car. Gave me that all knowing smile of hers. I was like…..

      • no sandipan i think people here deserve to know about that woman…its people like her who make law school worth the pain…might just spur them on to do better.
        god i wish i got a smile like that from her…would have really made my day. well…she is not called nalsar mata for nothing eh

  3. First off, thanks for writing this despite that hectic schedule you have. And yeah, you guys are pretty able at multi-tasking, no doubt about that. Yes, the site looked completely abandoned and yes, it was a long wait, but, we understand. 🙂 And the article got me pretty oriented, considering my first priority right now is getting rid of a hurdle I’d like to call ‘Boards’. In my opinion, if you love what you do, monetary benefits and perquisites are only by-products, and as you aptly put it, people with the by-product only in mind, eventually fizzle out. The real product, as cliched as it may sound, however true, is that feeling of happiness and satisfaction that you get when you choose to do something that you love for the rest of your life, so much so, that it’s not work anymore. Yes, it may require a lot of sweat and toil, but in the end, those who have the passion, have the willingness to put in that effort, and eventually, they’ll get huge pay-packets even if they didn’t do it for that or expect that. Hey, I love Biology and I naturally thought medicine was my calling. But law and its ‘complications and complexities’ have always intrigued me from way before, and now, preparing for the CLAT, especially critical and legal reasoning, is something I look forward to, because I love it! So, like the Blackberry ad goes, “Do what you love, and love what you do.” 🙂
    Thanks again for the article! 😀

  4. This is good Sandipan. Took me back to The-Recruit days. 😉
    I am yet to discover my real motivation. It is something though, am just not too sure.
    Brilliant post.

  5. Hey u r work in g.k. Section is commendable ………….. Bt i just want to know u r take on other sections esp. Legal n logic …… Plz post sth. In these sec. As it would be of huge significance…..

  6. Thank you Sandipan for the superbly written article. And the question you pose, is actually a fundamental one. Why do you want to pursue law? Well, my answer. In my opinion it is good if you know how you want to spend your life. Do you want to have life in abundance even if money comes less OR dream of an affluent, on the go corporate life (or something else)? For me, what a law degree can equip me with is a more important question. The most attractive feature: Law offers a wide range of career options. Now, I do not know as to what I will be doing after law school, but 5 years is enough time for me to ascertain my abilities and understand and realize my own skills and how I can, in the best way possible, employ them. I always enjoy creative writing, debating and have a strong curiosity for knowledge. And what’s the best, studying law is definitely more than assimilating knowledge. 🙂 I realize that it is NOT about the mere charm of black gowns and white bands. Not just about quixotically dreaming of a money-spinning job. Law, indeed, is a challenging profession. Embellished with many, stark realities.

  7. Truly Commendable!! It is an amazingly articulated piece! It made me stronger regarding my decision of doing Law. Great Going Sandipan!

  8. @ Divya- Loving bio will also help u in dis world of law…I was also an ardent lover of bio especially botany ..it helps u to build up your observational power and acknowledge good things…which is essentially required while analysing case…(at least what I have understood in dis little connection of mine with law)..as far as hurdles are concerned we also have our sems and oder affairs dat r dere in college..so anyhow hv t manage it…

    • Really? Helps build up observational skills eh? Oh well, good for me then. 🙂 Can finally put that glorious subject to use somehow.

      As for hurdles, I wasn’t complaining. Just merely stating the facts.:-) Besides, hurdles are pretty awesome, they mix up my usually mundane and routine life. 😛 Besides, what’s life without bumpy roads? Ha. Can’t wait for college. *fantasises for a bit*

      *returns to reality* O_O, Chalo, gotta go study, so I can make my distant, forlorn dream of studying at ‘Justice City’ (as Sandipan puts it) true. Thanks for the reminder. 😀

  9. Thank YOU!
    I needed this. And the writing style is just too good. I am not that good with words, so forgive my amateurish response.

    Well, I have been awed by this profession since I was 6. My dad is a lawyer and my mom has a law degree herself. So people obviously think that its something which goes in the blood or some other genetic fact. *rolls eyes*

    But, I want to study law because of many many reasons. I like the idea of possessing the legal power, knowing no limits to shrewdness and the ready witticism is the best offer of the whole package. What’s NOT to want?

    Apologies for sounding so over-enthusiastic.. but I can’t wait to start law school. I hope I get a decent rank to catapult myself either at NLS or NALSAR.

    There is so much more to say.. But I think I will dedicate my entire train of thoughts in a proper blog-post in my blog.

    bid adieu

    Neeati.

  10. Dear Sandipan,

    I have always had this nagging doubt…..i think law is a good profession for me but i really have no idea what is taught in law school.. whether ill enjoy it or not and the like…..i chose law basically because i really like reading, writing, debating and discussing and law seemed the perfect combination….but i am not 100% sure and i don’t know what i should do to make myself certain too….

  11. This is kind of out of place (but since the ‘ask us’ section is not being attended to.. Which is understandable 🙂 )

    -When do the NLUO forms come out?
    -Will CG be releasing a clat college rank list?

    • hey dude nice post
      i really love ur post … u re such a prolific writer …. in mah view 🙂
      i have a request 4 u …. can u write something on growing corruption in our indian society …
      in mah view corruption is like a disease which is spreading like a wild fire ……….. its remedy is urgently required …… so i want u 2 share ur thoughtful views on dis topic….
      thnx once again for ur thoughtful note on law …:-) jeo do vivo

    • @Pappu.
      NLUO forms should be out in a while. Call their office or check the website. Yes, CG will be releasing two lists. One for only the CLAT law schools and the other will include a list of top 20 or so law schools. Since CLAT form does not have a preference list this time, we shall be updating a little later, given there is no hurry.

      • hey itz not sure dat nluo will conduct its test on 19th june dere are some changes which can be observed on their website … i hope it will be a suprise element for us ……. 🙁

  12. frankly.. i really dunno if law’s my thing…. i was feelin upto it some months ago.. but not now, no clue why the sudden disinterest! my parents are so happy bout me appearing for CLAT n all.. they are very motivated about law bcoz we had a legal dispute for 5 yrs n were successful in winning it… they’re bowled over by it.. its noy the case with me! yeah i do enjoy writing and do vast reading.. do a lot of it.. i really dont know what to do and m scared to express my feelings to my parents, plz help!

    • Oiii. Talk to your parents. I am sure they will understand you. After all, it’s about your LIFE. BTW why the sudden disinterest, if I may ask? There has to be a reason, I mean! 🙂

      • There doesn’t ”have” to be a reason neccessarily. We’re humans… More of emotional creatures than logical 😀

        • But we need not necessarily be/ shouldn’t get 100 % emotional when making a decision like this: a career choice. Had I got totally emo, I would have gone into modeling or singing (seriously) :p There has to be a reason for ‘such’ a choice/ decision/ disinterest. Sometimes the reason may elude you, may be it is buried in your sub conscious. But a ‘sudden’ disinterest, like this: there SHOULD be a reason. (the reason can also be one underpinned by your feeling) Isn’t it? 😀

          • Well, either you don’t feel there are enough incentives, or you feel the incentives aren’t good enough. And in your place, I actually would look to become a dancer/singer/model later in life. The game doesn’t stop at the gates of the law school right? It begins there.

            @Adithya: With due respect, don’t suggest a passive-aggressive behavior, they add further pressure. How does being frank about crucial matters to your parents sound?

        • Ah….thank goodness that u realised now itself that YOU are not that interested in LAW……back down right now……u wont be able to do anything once u get into a LAW SCHOOL and if u say you are not interested.!!!!

          • but write CLAT anyway…….it will surely make your parents “happy”………but don’t tell them anything about you being not interested…it would be really “AWFUL”.and if u dont get a good rank…obviously u wont be selected…..then u can give them the excuse of not studying properly or paper being too hard…

  13. @ Pappu: Incentives aren’t good enough? Where does this come from and how could you conclude this from my reply? And I was just trying to explain my point with an example. Of course, I can take them up as a part time affair, anytime not just after law school 🙂 and I absolutely agree with you. You MUST talk to your parents Srishti. Do not be scared and tell them what you feel, and then decide 🙂

    • @saumya:i was just trying to help….sorry if she got it in the wrong sense……..i wasn’t trying to complicate her situation….

    • People not feeling interested in a certain career. Those are usually the factors, like in the case of Sristi. That’s what I meant 🙂

  14. I want 2 be candid 2 u. I would love 2 see u competiting with us ,.. No matter vot de result is u should enjoy de paper nd if u think its a futile exercise u should definitely back 4m de paper… One strong advice choose dose profession which u find interesting ., dont play with ur life.. Hope its clear 2 u ., 🙂 jeo do vivo

  15. ok people…stop bashing me…..i was just trying to help……finally it is up to sristi to decide what she wants.!!!!! whatevr me,pappu and saumya are gonna say doesn’t matter,u have to take the final decision(sristi).

  16. Thank you so much pappu, soumya & adithya!!! 😀 hmm sudden disinterest because i’m more into guitar and singing which i’m doing a LOT to keep my board exam stress away.. n that’s like totally got into me.. n i’v always wntd to do what i love. with music so much on my mind i feel i wont do justice to law school! Its not that i dont like it, the concepts are wonderful but will i be able to handle law school? i have to think now coz i dont want to regret my decision either way later. yes soumya, i’ll think about and talk to my parents too! and yes, i’ll give CLAT a shot.

    • I too play the guitar and sing. Learnt singing for round about 10 years. I love law school. If you are thinking you will have to give up on your interests you are very wrong. I can speak for Nalsar and the music scene here is just crazy. WIth monthly music and dance nights, DJ nights et. al. the campus is always happening. Then there is SUMMONS as well as Carpe Diem. We have a recreation room where there are frequent jamming sessions. If you want to do law I am sure you will make a great lawyer. As always I would quote Balzac, “NONE IS GREATER THAN WHAT YOU CAN BECOME.”

    • You can always carry your guitar around..strum..sing. That can be your hobby…you know. So if ‘you wanna be a lawyer’ then rap about it…opportunities are endless in university hostels. 😀

      “Sing with me, sing for the year Sing for the laughter, sing for the tears”

  17. Thank you Sandipan! That so so great! thrilled to hear that the music is so alive there. I spoke to my parents, had a heart to heart talk, now i’m no more skeptical about doing law, m ready to give it a try.. plus keep my other interests going along with me..

    @saumya : sorry.

  18. Awesome post!

    The reason law (especially at an NLU) sounds so appealing to me is that the curriculum is just so darn awesome. I love that I can can couple a liberal arts education with a professional education. I look forward to a career in academia or public service, and if it didn’t sound so self-indulgent, I’d say I’m looking forward to being a writer as well. I love that a legal education will open doors for me in all these fields.

    As for why I want to go to law SCHOOL per se, I’d say it’s for all the stuff I’m sure to be up to over the course of the next few years- mooting, debating, quizzing(?), reading up on so many different things. All this with a strong writing component. And fantastic peers.

    I don’t think I can think of a better way to spend half a decade. 😀

  19. Hey!

    This is one wonderful article! It really, really echoes my sentiments.

    Frankly, I want to be a filmmaker. I’ve felt it, known it since I started directing plays in my school, since about 3 years back. And so, as anyone can guess, the only college which I was aiming at was FTII, Pune. Unfortunately, they offer only postgraduate diploma.

    And this puts me in the crap situation of trying to get myself admitted into some or the other college , some or the other course, for which I may or may not have aptitude but for which I certainly don’t have any interest, as the only things I like studying are Movies and Television.

    Now am I being wrong in trying to pursue law? Will 5 years at a law college really KILL me? 🙁

    P.S: Heck, I’m being so presumptuous, will I even be able to CRACK CLAT ? :-S

  20. the thing is…, i want to do law coz i love reasoning and language.. also i feel tht this is my natural inclination but i’m terrified of speaking in public! i might not show it when i have to do it, but i’m generally on th verge of fainting when im on stage!! ppl say i’ll get over this soon enough.. but will i?!?!?

    • This is the exact problem with me… That is why i cant decide whether i should take this line or not??? Experts, please help…

  21. well same goes for me
    I love writing,analysing and advocating my opinion. I love fighting for a cause. But I am a little scared of speaking in public. Is law the right career for me? I am so confused.

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