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Archive for January 20th, 2013

From: Satiish K Bhatia”
To: am-global@earthlink.net
Subject: Practical Approach of “See The Bright Side”
Date: Sun, 20 Jan 2013 21:53:33 +0530

Baba

== PRACTICAL APPROACH OF “SEE THE BRIGHT SIDE” ==

Namaskar,
Every Ananda Margii is aware that Baba guides us to “see the bright side of everything”. And while at first glance the phrase seems quite simple, there is a greater meaning and application which we should explore. To date, some still have some fundamental misudnerstandings about this key guideline from Sadguru.

SEEING THE BRIGHT SIDE: HOW IT WORKS

In dharmic fashion, Baba sets the tone that in our Ananda Marga we are to see the bright side of everything and side by side oppose all sorts of dogmas, exploitation, and wrongdoings in order to guide the society on the proper path. However a few people do not understand how this is all working together. They reason that seeing the bright side means not pointing out the negativity in society, and / or not fighting against injustice – i.e. just remaining meek and passive etc.

For greater clarity we should see Baba’s practical working style and other related examples to best understand the inner sense of “see the bright side”. By this very system we can clean the organisation – ridding it from dogmas and groupism.

MOTHER ANALOGY

In one regard, it is just like how parents view their children. Proper parents always see the bright side with regards to their children’s growth and development. With love and affection they see everything; they never overlook the lesser qualities. And, by this way, they are seeing the bright side and watching out for their child’s welfare.

For example a mother may think, “Okay my child has 80% good qualities but to help them improve and make them more bright certain aspects of their life need correction.” So the mother lovingly tells her child, “Don’t be lazy. Study more. Go and prepare your lessons.” All those things she tells the child. By this way she identifies and addresses the defective behaviours of the child. All done with the benevolent motive to correct those wrong habits and thus increase the brightness of her child.

So the mother is seeing the bright side, and that means trying to make it more bright. The way to do that is to find the dark elements and have them corrected or removed. Then the bright side will become more brilliant. No one can accuse the mother of criticising the child or seeing the dark side. Who can blame that the mother is not seeing the bright side when addressing her child and only seeing the dark side.

Seeing the dark side occurs when a person does not want to make someone else better. In that case they will only abuse others with the intention of putting them down. Many persons do like that. But this is very bad and this is not at all working hand in hand with seeing the bright side.

That’s why Baba guides us that we should have a sympathetic opinion regarding the person to whom we are dealing. And then find out their mistake, and remove it.

POINTING OUT THE DEFECT AND SEEING THE BRIGHT SIDE GO HAND IN HAND

The whole spirit behind “seeing the bright side” is to rectify the defects in order to build up a seamless and vibrant society. The present humanity is suffering from many ailments. In dharmic fashion Baba exposes all the various problems and ailments that are present in the society. Such as dogma, negativity, exploitation by capitalism, crudity of communism, and many more things. Baba is highlighting the fact in bold letters that now society has very little on the good side. To rectify the situation, Baba guides us to think in a pointed way and remove the disparities and exploitation. Then society’s brightness will come forth and shine.

Hence, by seeing the bright side, the main intention is to fix the problem. To make others aware about the defect and address and repair it. And make the situation better and better. So in Ananda Marga our aim is to fix society’s various problems. Toward that end, Baba has also graciously given the solution to each and every problem as well. So ours is the practical approach.

In contrast, those who just criticize and abuse others without ever offering any solution– that approach is negative. And no well-intentioned person will do like this.

For example, a mother doesn’t only criticize her child. Rather the mother instructs, “Don’t be lethargic and negligent about your health & hygiene. Go and take a bath.” So here the mother’s basic point is: ‘don’t be lazy on the point of cleanliness’. So this is not mere criticism. Because immediately following comes the direction to go and take a bath. And by that way the child will be clean. So the intention of the mother is to improve the child’s condition. This is seeing the bright side.

Similarly if someone says that “My neighbor often gets drunk and may one day hurt himself. We should help him.” Out of a feeling of concern if someone talks this way about their neighbor, then that is not a negative action. Rather, it is positive. Because the person wants to make their neighbor better – he wants to see his brightness more shining. And in that way a solution has been given to help him.

Likewise people wash their clothes with the same positive motive – to remove the stain and make their clothes more fresh. So finding out the stain does not mean one is seeing the negative side or indulging in anything detrimental. Rather by taking the time to remove the dirt one is making everything brighter and cleaner.

DHARMA SAMIIKSA & REPORTING SESSIONS

ARE IDEAL EXAMPLES OF SEEING THE BRIGHT SIDE

The best example of all is Baba’s divine role during Dharma Samiiksa. There, in historic fashion, Baba goaded so many sadhakas unto the path of supreme beatitude by lovingly pointing out their defects and mistakes; by this way, He graciously rectified them and removed their ills. This allowed those bhaktas to move ahead with increasing speed toward their cherished Goal. If Baba had merely praised each person who came before Him for dharma samiiksa, those sadhakas would not have been able to progress. That would have been useless. So Baba lovingly pointed out the defects to help sadakhas become clean and pure, i.e. blemishless. No one can stand there and say that Baba only saw the dark side. One cannot blame Guru in this manner. He lovingly highlighted the wrongs so they could be removed, thereby allowing the sadhaka to feel pure, light, and bright. That was Baba’s magnificent approach during dharma samiiksa, and verily in every reporting session as well. This was how Babs practically showed us how to follow: See the bright side. Who can say Baba was seeing only the dark side and not seeing the bright side.

“SEE THE BRIGHT SIDE” IS DONE WITH BENEVOLENCE

So in this process of “Seeing the bright side”, the benevolent motive is the main factor. Whereas those seeing the dark side criticize without the intent to help. That is where their approach is wrong and completely poisonous.

For example, take the case of the communist’s approach. Communists always try to destroy capitalists, with that mindset they abuse capitalists.

A related approach happens with political parties in the democratic system as well. One party leader’s only aim is to sabotage the other party’s programs to make them look bad. This manner has nothing to do with “seeing the bright side.”

If one group endlessly involved in undermining and mudslinging,then that is not “see the bright side”. Because their only intention is to put the other group down and gain the power. Righting the organisation by following ideology is not their way.

EXAMPLE OF SEE THE BRIGHT SIDE

Whereas our true approach in Ananda Marga – Baba’s example – is not like that and the directive ‘See the bright side’ works in a completely different way.

Regarding the defects of capitalism Baba outrightly exposes the short-sighted, materialistic, and selfish nature of capitalism. And side by side He provides the Prout – the perfect solution. By implementing Prout everybody will become healthy, and everybody’s face will shine with joy. Step by step, the physical problems will vanish, the psychic ailments will be identified and solved, and people will be able to advance in the field of spirituality. They will thus build up a strong and healthy God-centered society.

No one can blame Baba that He Himself did not follow the teaching that He gave for others: See the bright side of everything. From the getgo Baba was seeing the bright side of human society and by pointing out the ills and defects of capitalism He best helped those capitalists and society.

So all around, Ananda Marga’s teaching is ensconced in the motive of welfare: By pointing out the injustices and negativity, fixing the problem, and leading the whole society along the path together to the final desideratum.

Thus, seeing the bright side goes hand in hand with pointing out the faults. Without pointing out the defects, the bright side will never be able to become more bright. Well-wishers never ignore the problem. When you go to the doctor then that doctor does tests to find the problem and make you healthy – i.e. brighter than before. Same is the case when you bring your scooter to the mechanic. In that moment, the mechanic does not praise all the good qualities of the scooter – rather he finds the problem and fixes it.

And that is what we must do in order to rid our Ananda Marga from groupism: Identify the problem and solve it by implementing Baba’s neo-humanistic teachings.

OUR DUTY

Hence the supreme spirit of “See the Bright Side” is imbibed in each and every moment of Baba’s working style and is embedded within the entire Ananda Marga ideology. Who can say Baba was seeing only the dark side of those He was point out and not seeing the bright side.

Thus as Ananda Margiis we are living in the world, and our duty is that we should help clean the society and make it better. Likewise we are living in this organization (AMPS) so our duty is to not overlook the wrongdoings.

Rather, we should find out the problems and fix them. If something is not going according to Baba’s teaching then we should rectify that. By this way our organization will be better and better.

By properly following the inner spirit of Baba’s divine guideline of “See the bright side” that is the only way to move ahead and build up a healthy and vibrant society free from exploitation.

SUMMARY

Well-wishers always point out the defect in order to remove it and enhance the bright side. Those who refrain from talking about the ills are not seeing the bright side. They may be meek; they may be cowardly; but they are definitely not seeing the bright side. Those who only talk about the negative side with the intent of suppressing others are followers of the dark side. Here is one such example:

Baba says, “There are many teachers who wound the sentiments of a student by ridiculing either his caste or his father’s profession saying, “The plough suits you better than the pen, my boy,” or “You had better join your father at the potters wheel.” Even today such utterances come out of the mouths of many teachers.” (1)

Such a teacher’s sole intention is the put the boy down. That is the dark side.

In Ananda Marga, we only see the bright side: The intention is to purify by removing the stain and making everything bright, shining, and brilliant.

WARNING: HOW BRIGHT SIDE IS MISUSED

Often the statement – “See the bright side” – is misused by selfish and opportunistic exploiters. They try to convince others not to point out the wrongdoings etc. They want people to overlook their defects and talk only of their good qualities. Hearing this, some very naive people are misled and they remain befooled. But this is not the way. So be alert if any immoral elements try to teach you not to oppose wrong wrongdoing.

BABA’S GUIDELINES FOR DEVOTEES

“We cannot call people “good” if they cannot lead people of all walks of life towards welfare. We can call them “goody-goodies” but not good people. Those who are truly good people will move bravely forward and provide inspiration and strength to those mute masses to fight against all kinds of obstacles, and give a clarion call to them to march ahead.” (2)

“Intelligent people should no longer remain silent…They must not act like goody-goodies, seeing evil but continuing to tolerate it. This is very bad.” (3)

“The establishment of an ideal society depends on the mutual help of the members and their cooperative behaviour. This cooperative behaviour depends on the practice of the principles of Yama and Niyama; so, spiritual practices, especially the practice of Yama and Niyama, are the sound foundation of an ideal society…All Ananda Margis, when they see other Margis acting against the principles of Yama and Niyama, must make them shun this habit either by sweet or harsh words or by dealing even more strictly. Thus they will have to make the society strong. Henceforth I direct every Ananda Margi to keep strict vigilance on other Ananda Margi to make them practise the principles of Yama and Niyama.” (4)

“The characteristic of good people is to fight against injustice, to firmly adhere to truth and righteousness, to protect the helpless and fight against all evil persons. Those who are merely simple and are of a meek and goody-goody nature are not good people.” (5)

“By observing people’s conduct one will easily notice those who are absorbed in divine love…Those who have attained Iishvaraprema can never and will never exploit others. They will raise their voice against all sorts of tyranny, injustice, and exploitation. Those who do not possess that kind of honest courage to oppose all wrongs are nothing but fakes – they are never genuine [devotees].” (6)

“I have already said that Ananda Marga is the first movement aimed at liberating spirituality from the unwholesome influences from dogma. Hence you must not in any way encourage dogma. Rather, you should carry on an endless fight against dogma. And while fighting against dogma, you will realize the actual truth, and when you will come in contact with truth, you will be established in real spirituality…human beings have got to be established in human excellence and carry on a ceaseless struggle against dogma.” (7)

BABA’S SPECIAL TEACHING FROM THE ORIGINAL HINDI DISCOURSE NOTED BELOW

If a family member or close person is doing something wrong then one must point out their defect. Never tolerate such things. Ironically, the general tendency is to overlook the faults of your close people etc. But that is very dangerous – it is more dangerous than if they were distant. If someone is insincere and does not have a sadhu mentality, then they must be pointed out, opposed, and rectified. Only then will that person be able to grow. This series of guidelines is especially critical if that person is close to you.

Think in this manner: A snake in the wild is not as dangerous as a snake that is in the house. Thus close persons must always be pointed out and corrected. That is the gist of Baba’s following teaching noted below in the original Hindi.

“साधना की जो मुख्य बात है, कि—सत्याश्रयी बनना | “सत्याश्रयी” माने यहाँ, sincere बनना | कहा गया कि आज के जीवन में मनुष्य में बहुत कुटिलता तथा जटिलता आ गई है | मनुष्य पहले के माफ़िक, सीधे नहीं रहे | यह बात आज से दस हज़ार साल पहले जितना सत्य था, आज उससे भी अधिक सत्य है | अर्थात्‌ दस हज़ार साल पहले भी देखा गया था कि—मनुष्य क्षणिक लोभ के लिए, क्षणिक सुख के लिए, धर्म से हट जाते हैं | और, तुलसी जी भी कहते थे कि—”कौन मनुष्य कितना perfect है, उसका प्रमाण मिलता है विपद के समय में | धैर्य, धर्म, नारी, और मित्र का परिचय मिलता है, विपद में |

छोटा-सा लोभ, ख़ूब छोटा-सा एक सामयिक लाभ के कारण मनुष्य धर्म के रास्ते से हट जाते हैं | प्राचीन काल में ऐसा नहीं था | क्रमशः मनुष्य के मन में जितनी जटिलता बढ़ रही है, मनुष्य उतना insincere बन रहा है | और इसके लिए मुख्य ज़िम्मेवारी है, so-called intellectual लोगों की | अपनी कमज़ोरी को ढाँकने के लिए, छिपाने के लिए, उन लोगों ने क्या किया ? बड़ी-बड़ी बात जनता को सुनाई है | मगर अपने ज्यों का त्यों रह गए |

मूड़ मुड़ाए जटा रखाए, मस्त फिरें जैसा भैंसा |
और खलड़ी ऊपर ख़ाक लगाए, मन जैसा तो तैसा ||

तो, यह जो intellectuals, यही आम जनता को विभ्रान्त किए हैं | और हम बोले, क्या ? sincerity first, sincerity second, sincerity always | साधनामार्ग में sincerity सबसे बड़ी चीज़ है | और, sincerity क्या है ? Sincerity is always सत्याश्रयी | Sincerity माने ही सत्य में रहना, मज़बूत रहना |

अपना आदमी हो, घर का आदमी हो | कोई सत्य से इधर-उधर हट गया, sincerity की कमी जिनमें है—उसका विरोध करो, बर्दाश्त मत करो | अपना आदमी है तो क्या है | अपना आदमी अगर असाधु है, insincere है, तो, और भी अधिक ख़तरनाक है | क्यों ? बाहर में अगर साँप रहा, वह जितना ख़तरनाक है, घर में अगर साँप घुस गया तो और भी अधिक ख़तरनाक है | इसलिए, और भी, उसका अधिक विरोध होना चाहिए |” (8)

Namaskar,
in Him,
Satiish

NOTE 1: NEGATIVE LEFTIST APPROACH

We have seen how communists only indulge criticism after criticism without any practical intention to remedy the situation.

Baba says, “Those who are leftists in the world are even more dangerous…they are deliberately seeking out the dark and dirty aspects of life and, like flies, growing fat on the secretions of society’s festering sores. It must be remembered that flies do not heal sores– rather they exacerbate them, because the very puss of these sores provides them with their vital juice. So the filthy aspects of society are the only wealth on which these [leftists] subsist.” (9)

Note 2: REFERENCES

1. Human Society – 1, p.8
2. Ananda Vacanamrtam – 22
3. Liberation of Intellect: Neo-Humanism, Disc: 2
4. A Guide to Human Conduct
5. A Few Problems Solved-5
6. Ananda Vacanamrtam – 7, p.12
7. Prout in a Nutshell – 18
8. EGD 25 November 1978 Bombay, NP,Taking Shelter in Satya is the Essence of Sadhana
9. Prout in a Nutshell – 10, p. 24

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Date: 19 Jan 2013 21:39:00 -0400
To: am-global@earthlink.net
From: Miguel
Subject: Big Questions About World Events

Baba

=== BIG QUESTIONS ABOUT WORLD EVENTS ===

Namaskar,
These days the ongoing trend is that countries, both the so-called wealthy ones and impoverished, spend huge money on constructing fancy buildings and glamorous stadiums to enhance the prestige of their nation for international sporting events like the Olympics and the World Cup.

Yet side by side the living standard of their own citizens is shockingly low: shanty towns, no running water, lack of food, no clothes for the children, etc. This has been the unfortunate trend and now we see that continuing with the upcoming events in Rio de Janeiro, Brasil.

BRASIL TO HOST TWO BIG EVENTS

At present, Brazil is gearing up to host both the 2014 World Cup and the 2016 Summer Olympics, both of which will be hosted in Rio. At minimum, estimates are that Brasil will spend nearly $35 billion to host these two events. That figure does not take into consideration private sector and future public sector funding.

They are building 12 fancy new or renovated stadiums, airports, hotels and so many other works – and that is just for the World Cup. Two years later in 2016 there will be far more in place for the Olympics. Actually since 2009, Rio has been pouring money into construction in preparation for the Olympics.

While all these tens of billions of dollars are spent on these sporting venues, not less than 25% of Rio’s population, or 1.5 million people, are suffering and live without the basic necessities. The million-plus residents of Rio de Janeiro’s shantytowns (favelas) still find their lives controlled by violent drug gangs and that the crime rate in Rio ranks among the highest in the world, and many of them will be uprooted and relocated before 2014. Their lives will not improve an ounce due to the spending of $35 billion, just they will be forgotten.

And before anyone thinking that the $35 billion will jumpstart the economy let us not forget this recent history:

“Pan American Games in Rio de Janeiro in 2007, which were so over budget and rife with scandal and corruption that the benefits for the city were practically nil.”

So this is the long-standing problem. Host nations spend billions, the nation’s poor are trampled upon, and in the end there is little to show except financial debt and stadiums that will never be used again.

SYSTEMIC PROBLEM

So many other nations have been involved in similar propositions – both past and present, everything from the building of the Konark temple (Orissa) in the vipran era to countries hosting the Olympics in this present vaeshyan era.

In all such cases huge resources have been allocated by the state to create glorious structures and impress people across the world stage, yet side by side those living in the vicinity of those stadiums lack the basic necessities (food, water, shelter) and will never ever get the chance to enter or use those facilities either.

Should such activities be allowed to continue? What is the cause behind such maneuvers? What is Prout’s stand?

TWO MAIN CAUSES: Part 1

There are two main causes behind this current problem: (a) wastage of money, and (b) heartlessness and lack of concern for the suffering humanity.

Prout’s stand is for the rational utilization and proper distribution of all resources (physical, psychic and spiritual) and the very essence of Prout is about giving a voice to the voiceless, i.e. having heart-felt sympathy for those in need.

Thus whether it be the huge monies spent by countries like Greece (2004), China (2008), Canada (2010), London (2012) to host the Olympics or lavish airports in cities like Chicago or Bangkok, those governments indulge in tremendous spending to show the world how modern and perfect their land is, when in fact all around there is struggle and strife amongst the masses.

When governments procure just a little extra money then they embark on such prestigious projects and completely overlook the well-being of the common people – i.e. the very people whom they are supposed to serve. Plus those same leaders spend all their brain power convincing the common masses that this is indeed that right way to spend the state’s money. That is how both the over accumulation of physical and psychic resources plays out in these scenarios.

For instance, Greece spent every penny they had to host the 2004 Olympics – not only that they incurred a huge debt, from which they are still suffering today. So the huge amount of funds they poured into the Olympics failed to resolve so many internal issues for their citizens – things like education, job stability etc. Now today, their situation is even worse as their entire government faces bankruptcy. And one of the root causes is spending on lavish arrangements for the Olympics.

TWO MAIN CAUSES: Part 2

Side by side there is a heartlessness involved. The powers that be pay a deaf ear and blind eye to the suffering and want of the common people. Whether it be naked children, rotting schools, or food shortages, those wealthy bureaucrats justify that the poor people bring it upon themselves and the state is therefore not responsible. Or those rulers simply do not even give it a second thought. Whatever the case may be, with their callous hearts they overlook the suffering of their own people.

Huge state expenditures are made for events like the Olympics and the World Cup, yet when all is said and done, the common people receive no support at all. Just they were left to wallow in their own struggle while their elected and appointed officials revile in the glory of being a host on the world stage. For the sake of the prestige of a few, an entire people are made to suffer.

Such leaders live a heartless existence. They look away from those in need – i.e. their own people.

WASTAGE OF MONEY AT PAST SUCH EVENTS

One striking example of this is how South Africa spent 10 billion rand to erect a huge, new football stadiums for the World Cup 2010, yet that same country remains home to terrible poverty – and high criminal activity as a result.

It was reported that in 2002, that an estimated 11 million children (between the ages of 0-18) are living in dire poverty in South Africa and in the capital city itself there are 50 – 70 homicides a day. Plus there are innumerable other stark reports which delineate the extreme and dire situation in South Africa.

Yet all the countries financial and natural resources were used to hold the World Cup in 2010.

Prior to and during the 2010 winter Olympics in Vancouver B.C., there were lots of protests that this was the wrong way to spend the state’s money. After all, they constructed stadiums and venues to impress the world and built an Olympic village to house the athletes, only to tear down the village the day after it was over and watch those stadiums sit empty for the coming years. That is what has happened so many times in the past from Barcelona (1992) to Atlanta (1996) to Athens (2004) and Beijing (2008).

Each time the host country tries to impress the world with their modern construction and side by side cover up and hide their poverty.

The Olympics is certainly the biggest stage but it also happens with events like the World Cup, the Commonwealth Games, and even with university tournaments etc. In this vaeshyan era, maximum money is spent on sporting venues whereas in the past during the vipran era all the public monies were used for the construction of cathedrals and temples.

Nowadays in Europe, less than 2% of the population attends church in some countries, yet still there are huge cathedrals and church lands from the days when the vipras were in power and the church controlled much of the wealth. Those days also money was used frivolously at the expense of the welfare of the common people – just so that they could boast that they had the most elegant cathedral etc.

Baba says, “While money has been spent lavishly for the construction of beautiful places of worship, money has never been arranged for food, clothing, housing, education and medical care for the welfare of the poor. While for four full years all the state revenues of Orissa were spent for the construction of the Konark temple, during that period not a penny was spent for human welfare. Needless to say, the history of all countries is replete with such examples.” (1)

OLYMPICS DOES NOT BRING PEACE

Some attest that the Olympics bring peace and amity. Let’s take a closer look to see if this or not. In 1936, Nazi Germany hosted the Olympics in Berlin and shortly thereafter World War II began. Throughout the Cold War period, nations like the US and USSR participated in countless Olympics, but that never eased political or military tensions. Likewise India and Pakistan have been participating in the Olympics and Commonwealth Games for years, all the while they have remained antagonistic towards one another. As Ananda Margiis, we should bear in mind that peace only comes with the eradication of exploitation. So long as there is exploitation there will never be peace, regardless of a country’s involvement in the Olympic games or not.

SOLUTION FOR HOLDING OLYMPICS

Various international organisations like the United Nations etc do not build new offices every time they hold a meeting. Rather they return to the same venue again and again. The same should be done with the Olympics. There can be 4 fixed sites around the globe. The Olympics can simply rotate through those 4 venues, returning to the same site every 16 years. That way each facility can be of a premium standard and well maintained. An international board will manage the sites and distribute profits to all nations. During “off years” when the Olympics is not being held at a particular site then that location can be used for the Asia games or other competitions. This will bring regular use and income to each site. It will not be like the way things are now where an entire Olympic sporting complex is built for the Olympics, only to sit unused and fall into disrepair as soon as the games are over.

BABA’S RELEVANT TEACHINGS

Ananda Marga philosophy says, “It is desirable that the management of industrial, agricultural, trade and commercial enterprises not be in the hands of the central government or the world government (after the establishment of the world government). If it is, the common people will not get the direct or even the indirect opportunity to participate in the management of these enterprises. In such cases capitalists, opportunists or self-seeking politicians can easily take control of them and misappropriate public wealth.” (2)

“That is, these days, a person who possesses wealth is respected and revered whereas a person without money is a person honoured by none. The poor, whoever they may be, have to woo the rich just for the sake of earning their livelihood. Human values have become meaningless, for human beings have become the means for the rich to earn money. The rich, having purchased the human mind with their money, are busy playing a game of chess with the other members of society. Bereft of everything, people toil round the clock to earn a mere pittance. Today the motto of people is, “I have to send some food particles into the apathetic stomach after somehow taking a dip in the muddy water amidst hyacinths.”” (3)

“Those who are at the helm of society, constantly suspicious of others, forever count their losses and profits. They have no desire to think about the plight of humanity. Rather, to gratify themselves they are ready to chew the human bone, and suck human blood. For the self-centred there is no place for feelings of mercy, sympathy or camaraderie. The railway stations and market places are full of half-clad beggars and lepers desperately stretching out their begging bowls, earning their livelihood in the only way they know. They are fortunate if anyone contemptuously flings them a copper coin. The old blind beggars sitting all day long on the steps of a bridge automatically lift their bowls whenever anyone walks past. But their hungry pleas fall on deaf ears. On the other side of the social coin, sumptuous dishes are being prepared to entertain the rich dignitaries. These contrasts ridicule the present human society.” (4)

“Today, those who occupy high posts are also respected. Dignity is attached to post or rank. A station master will take great pains to prepare the railway minister’s visit, but will never trouble himself with the inconveniences faced by the ordinary passengers. Luxurious houses are built for high-ranking officers while the poor live in shanty towns, barely protected from the elements. I don’t say that large houses should never be built, but that everyone should be provided the minimum requirements. “I admit that both rice and tasty dishes are necessary for people, but I shall not demand a sumptuous dish from the goddess of food until I see that India has been overflooded with an abundance of rice.”” (5)

“These days educated people are so proud of their erudition that they detest illiterate people and avoid the company of commoners. Thus they shun village life and live in towns. When the question of returning to the village crops up, they say, “What on earth would we do in a village? There’s not a single person to talk to. Only idiots live there.” This explains why almost all attention is focused on the urban areas to the detriment of the villages. While soliciting votes, political leaders pay a short visit to the villages with a mouthful of attractive promises. They promptly inform the ignorant populace about their great achievements in constructing huge dams; though perhaps village cultivation is becoming impossible due to want of irrigation. They give detailed descriptions about their plans to build bridges and bungalows and install television sets, though perhaps in that village people die for want of medicine, or beg for food in poverty-stricken desperation. And yet the common villagers constitute the backbone of society. Even in the towns not everyone gets equal opportunities. The pavements have become the home for so many people. Rabindranath says, “There are always a number of uncelebrated people in the human civilization. They are the majority, and they are the medium, but they have no time to become human beings. They are raised on the leftovers of the national wealth. They are poorly dressed and receive little education, yet they serve the rest of society. They give maximum labour but are rewarded with ignominy – they die of starvation or are tortured to death by those they serve. They are deprived of all life’s amenities. They are the candlestick of civilization: they stand erect with the candle resting on their head. Everyone gets light from it, while they suffer the discomfort of the wax trickling down their sides. In this way, the dishonest of humanity or the neglect of human values has become a social malady.””(6)

Namaskar,
at His lotus feet,
Mantreshvar

Note 1: REFERENCES

(1) Rahr-6
(2) Problems of the Day, #11
(3) A Few Problems Solved – 2, Social Values and Human Cardinal Principles
(4) A Few Problems Solved – 2, Social Values and Human Cardinal Principles
(5) A Few Problems Solved – 2, Social Values and Human Cardinal Principles
(6) A Few Problems Solved – 2, Social Values and Human Cardinal Principles

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