Sunday, December 9, 2007

Vedanta Advice for Rational Society : By Dr. Murahari Valupadas

Looking into the current grim situation of the world, one can not help but get into a philosophic mood and say that it is a difficult period to live in. Individuals may become gloomy as well as a bit agitated and, perhaps, shortsighted due to this. This feeling has been the same in every age since the hunting and gathering societies to this age. Furthermore under the present day crisis, people solace themselves with the same old thought that somehow we have survived by muddying all along and will have to do the same to face the insecure and uncertain future.

The ancient Rishis of India, however, did something about it. For the purpose of providing guidelines for the benefit of one and all, the yogis of India have experienced upon life and have passed on this information in the form of scriptures. Vedantha Philosophy is one of them. Before writing about the applicable Vedantha Advice, I would like to summarize the current world situation and various thoughts that have been advanced as possible explanations:

* Economic scarcity and human aggression do not seem to be declining as technology is growing. Human misery seems to be on the rise and things appear to be out of control.
* Violence and terrorism are prevailing. Inequalities in economic and political power are not eliminated.
* We can not extract and utilize at will all we want from nature without destroying nature itself.
* There is no guarantee that even if scarcity is replaced with abundance, that humans are going to behave as humans.
* Planning current economies in terms of crisis solving, preventing foul - ups and irrational distribution is beyond imagination.
* There is a need for a social system which can establish a relationship between technological and social changes so that we can maximize the benefit of technology while minimizing its drawbacks.
* There is a need to establish the relationship between progress, growth and environmental preservation.

Growth, inflation, deflation, giant corporations and the environment are the problems that have to be dealt with carefully to get the system going. However, the economic models available do not open our eyes to the full meaning of the economic futures they project because the question of effects on social attitudes, morale and morality is usually left unexplained. What economists taught us is that the world is not just in a state of unrelated confusion but a continuous process, not just happening but developing - based on the interaction between technological advancement and the peoples' attitudes.

Real democracies did not exist since the days of hunting and gathering societies to this day and if the current situation prevails there is no possibility of this in the future either. Clearly it is evident from the above factors that all individuals of the society should have the capability to analyze, understand, and win over the situations that they come across rather than become victims. Vedantha is the foundation of all the theories of self-perfection and discusses the science of teaching self mastery. To establish a healthy society, the Vedantha philosophy emphasizes producing a healthier and more integrated personality in such individual. This type of individual achieves self-mastery including the ability to analyze and become a master of circumstance rather than a victim of circumstance. The science of Vedantha advises the treatment of meditation for making a genius out of an ordinary person. This practice of meditation:

*generates in us a powerful energy thus enabling us to lead a moral and ethical life.
* strengthens personality in us to liberate ourselves from unworthy judgments and weakness of character caused by the false identity with body, mind and intellect.
* helps in dropping all our low values of life and discover for ourselves the enduring principles of living.

The objective of world governments has been to keep people happy by manipulating and redistributing the wealth and objects. Vedantha says that any attempts to bring about greater world happiness without rehabilitating the individual personality are futile attempts. If we can bring up one generation of competent people as per the Vedantha advice, we would certainly come to rule the world of objects which is what is required to divert this society in the right direction.

Is it possible? It has to be. We came to realize the importance of curbing greenhouse gas effects. We are attempting to curb cigarette smoking all over. A day will come when the world governments will have to come together to realize the importance of a rational society to replace the current one. That will only be possible by concentrating on the betterment of each individual of society as per Vedantha advice.