Whither, Civilization

Man, the crown of civilisation! Mother’s nature favoured child, on whom has been bestowed the choicest gifts, the finest faculties! Today too, he marches onwards,” civilisation is a movement and not a condition, a voyage and not a harbour”. It is as though the ship of our civilisation has lost its compass and is itself lost in a fog. We need men who know how to steer us to safety, at the helm of this laden vessel, let we strike an iceberg, spring a leak and sink.

Man, for all his superior intelligence, has chosen to disrupt Nature’s symphony and is striking notes of discord with his attempts to fulfil all his whims- the bade and destructive ones too. The concept of co-existence that decrees: ‘ All are but parts of one stupendous whole ‘ and consider the entire Cosmos to the syncytium with a single source of life into it, seem to be no longer understood by man in a society where self – preservation and self-glorification are the esteemed codes of conduct.

The progress in science has been made under the heady influence of the wine of greed, of selflessness and the very damaging attitude of utter materialism, divorced from those virtues which makes a man, a man and not an ape anymore.

The mathematical laws governing the phenomenon of atomic fission were discovered as a matter of pride, but that this knowledge has been found his application in the bombing population ever since, is a matter of great disgust, totally unworthy of man- a mockery of the amazing powers of his brain and a negation of the divine quality of his heart.

An important consequence of scientific advantage is the freedom that it has given man. He is protected from anticipated earthquakes, approaching tornadoes, killing epidemics and thus apparently has freed himself from servitude to Nature’s dictums. Be it winter or summer, we have created living environments to our liking in homes and offices that can be maintained constant throughout the year.

Instead of attaining more happiness, more frustration and suffering have been invited. The moral disintegration and the rat-race for wealth make a port remonstrate :

God! that bread should be so dear, And flesh and blood so cheap!”

In reality, we have lost our freedom – the pressure of a lopsided society are so exacting that one’s survival and success is completely subject to the extent to which one pursues goals decided by the society and that is of two kinds – Eat, drink and be merry,’ for those who want to take life easy, and join the rat race and scramble for social and economic status’ for those who don’t wish to be idle. And we tumble down these beaten paths hoping to arrive at a destination that remains a mirage forever. It is said that the lives of a vast majority today is something like a soap bubble – so colorful when caught in a beam of light and yet so, hollow, one-touch and ‘pop’ it bursts leaving no signs of it’s showy, erstwhile existence.

Certainly, things were different at some periods of history when great cultures flourished. In the Vedic era when every member of the society was capable of appreciating the most profound truths about life , Greece under particles when every citizen of Athens was an epitome of perfection just to site a couple of examples.

The course of our civilisation seems to have been like that of a river with the origin of its crystal clear waters on the mountain heights; flowing down into the plains it has become polluted and is about to end its once pristine glory in a small stream losing its way in a desert.

A job is done best when there is love for it. The culture was never a thing so rare that it had to be especially sought for in the museum of art, which is the pitiable state of affairs today. The culture was a heritage inherited by the younger generation from the older; it was a burning flame kept alive by the continuous feeding of fuel. The greatest epic of the world was handed down, thus by word of mouth – the street urchin and the illiterate shepherd in the Meadows could alike narrate this epic – a poem and expound their meanings. Their understanding of life was so complete.

The presence of the internal needs of man is not even acknowledged, let alone creating external conditions that would serve their realisation; the voice of consciousness is stifled by man’s noisy, humdrum, crammed lifestyle.

Before the highest aspirations of the human mind are pulled down completely and anchored to an uninspired mundane existence and the dignity and potential are squandered foolishly, we ought to overcome this dereliction of our duty.

When such an ideal finds its fruition in every individual, society will naturally get remoulded too and then indeed the progress of our civilisation would blaze forthwith the glory and the grandeur of human life.

Dr S.k.jha


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