With the advent of civilization, we, the human beings started to live in society. As our numbers grew, our needs also grew. Our growing needs made inventions and discoveries in search of the resources. The people formed groups and those groups became states with passage of time. By going through history, we find that in search of the resources, the people wandered here and there. Where they saw ample availability of the resources, they settled. After settling themselves, they invited other people and slowly their numbers grew up. Sometime, differences among them arose and there had been fighting to snatch the control of the resources. This is still going on.
Our interests to meet our needs clash with those who too are interested to meet their needs. Materialism promotes our wish to gather as many things as we can and in the process of gathering, some of us give up ethics too. Today, earning of money is accorded top priority by majority of us without keeping care of our health, time and other important factors. Our imbalanced chasing of money/resources has made us mad sometime making us forget our relationship, status, understandings, ethics and our character too. If we do not get success, we are not making introspection of ourselves as to what wrongs we made that we could not achieve success but we see someone else’s working to be responsible. Instead of improving our process, we start to plan to harm the person, we understand, to be responsible for our failures. Sometime, our greed also makes us attack others to capture their resources in illegal and unethical methods. This creates discontent and results into crimes.
We must understand that it is the rule of nature that those who take birth vanish one day. Nature has gifted to everyone a limited time to live, not a single second thereafter. Further, you are not allowed to keep anything, any person with you after your time to live be over. The quantum of that time is not known. Your time can expire any day, any time, any moment whatever be the reason and you may take your last breath, that too, beyond your control and without your own permission. Then, why do you gather all those things which you are not able to enjoy during your life time? Do you gather for your next generations? How do you assess that your next generations can enjoy them? There are many cases when we see father/mother witnessing death of the kin during own life. We gather the materials to enjoy during our life and surplus for our next generations without knowing about the future. But we are doing it. Actually, we are committing the sin of hoarding those materials which can be used by other ones too. We are depriving them of their genuine share in the gifts given by the nature to the mankind.
This is true that this universe belongs to those who are brave and active. Those who wish to live easy life without doing any thing, should not be allowed to have comforts on other’s cost, labor and action. If you wish to live your time happily, you need to sweat yourself. It is our duty to groom up our progeny so well that at their time, they must understand the importance of the work. We must learn from the birds. When a bird sees its chic to have grown up sufficiently to fly through its own feathers, it kicks out that chic through the nest to earn the food itself. The chain goes on. We must follow. The day our generations may learn how to earn, we would be able to live happily by concentrating our efforts on our earning limited to our needs of the present and some savings for the emergencies. If we care for our present, the future stands insured itself.
Our forefathers had propounded the concept of Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam. It is a Sanskrit phrase. If we break up this phrase, we find that “vasudha” means the earth, “iva” is as a; and “kutumbakam” means family. That means that the whole world is one single family. The concept is not just about peace and harmony among the groups in the world, but also about a truth that somehow the whole world has to live by some rules like a family, set by an unknowable source. This is the reason why we think that any power in the world, big or small cannot have its way disregarding others. The nature balances every thing. If we disturb the process of nature, we find many calamities in result.
If we go through the history, we find that in the Vedic thought thousands of years ago, another verse which was in the form of a prayer “Loka samastha sukhinau bavanthu” – May the world live in peace, had been promoting pleasures for all. The people did not just pray for the happiness of humans alone. They prayed for every living creature in the world. “Sarve sukina santhu, sarve santhu niramayaha” – May every living being be free from ills and miseries and attain peace.
Today we talk of ‘global village’ and ‘globalization’. Globalization by definition is ‘the process of transformation of local phenomena into global ones, a process by which the people of the world are unified into a single society and function together’. While globalization started as an economic phenomenon driven by business interests, it is today perceived as a unification of economic, technological, social, cultural and political forces. However, although globalisation aims at diluting and dissolving the political boundaries of nations, nationalities, cultures and diversities, the world today is witnessing strife, wars, conflicts at all fronts and on all accounts i.e economic, political, social and cultural !
Why so? We are not honest at our heart. We talk of globalization but we eye at the markets and resources available at the other ends. We need to be honest. Our forefathers who proclaimed 4,000 years ago t
hat ‘world is one family’ were not seen to be in such conflict. Although the underlying objective of the two concepts appears to be the same, there obviously is a difference between the process of ‘globalization’ being attempted today and the principle of ‘Vasudaiva Kutumbakam’ that was ingrained in the culture and way of life of our forefathers. We will have to go back to the philosophy of our forefathers.
Today, globalization has been motivated by economic interests and not out of a concern for ‘universal welfare’ – economic interests of those searching for new markets and better resource mobilization. Its advocacy for free trade was adopted by different countries as it did lead to cash flows in otherwise deficient economies. However, the whole process being motivated primarily by economic interests of a few powerful nations and corporations, the emphasis is on pursuit of financial gains. It leads to satisfaction of economic needs of many people in less developed countries, though not all, thus nations’ policies and actions have started to get structured around greatest financial gains to benefit their societies.
Though we are happy to see that progress and success has started to be measured in material terms, other concerns such as environmental issues, or human perspectives of emotional richness or social well being, are not necessarily cared for. Moreover, the survival in the new global business markets is dependent on improved productivity and increased competition and in such highly competitive environments, human actions are getting centered on self interest and greed.
In this pursuit of material progress – production, distribution and consumption of an increasing number of goods and conveniences is the creed and each competes with the other to produce more with less. More skills, better technology, better access to cheaper resources even if through the exploitation of natural resources of the earth or through better, bigger bombs to maim and destroy opponents, all in pursuit of more financial gains! Although many of the wars being waged in the world appear to have religious and ethnic basis, the underlying motives are now being perceived to be economic – competition for dwindling resources of the world. Troops and weapons are being deployed where local people threaten corporate investments and returns!
We need to rethink over our policy of globalization and come back to Vasudaiva Kutumbakam’ in its letter and spirit. We need to live together and live happily by adjusting our needs to promote peace and fraternity amongst all the human beings with care to other creations as well.