Building tomorrow’s world today
In order to create a world without discrimination, we must dismantle the White Man’s control over our mind space, says Suma Varughese
Let’s play my favourite game. What kind of world are we going to inherit, post the corona pandemic? Most spiritually inclined folks are desperately hoping for a more holistic, harmonious, equitable, and healthy planet. I, too, long for that. But since this is a time for dreaming audacious dreams, I shall go a few steps further.
Freedom from all discrimination has to be one of the hallmarks of the New World. We must outgrow discrimination of religion, colour, caste, community, country, or class. One way to achieve this is by becoming aware of reincarnation. Indians are familiar with the concept, which forms an essential part of our philosophy, and seekers everywhere are acquainting themselves with the idea, but the larger part of the human family looks askance at it. Once we become aware that we will take birth over and over again, it will become obvious that our present life circumstances such as our colour, caste, community, or country are valid only for this lifetime. I may be phobic against the Black community simply because I have been born a White in this lifetime. But what guarantee do I have that I will not be born a Black in my next lifetime? Indeed, the more we loathe and despise one section of society, the greater the chance of being born into that section in our next lifetime, for we are meant to grow from all experiences and expand in acceptance and understanding. Hopefully, this understanding will help us to rid ourselves of our absurd prejudices and bigotry.
However, there is one discrimination that won’t wait for the next life. We will need to dismantle it in this lifetime itself, and that is the domination of human society by the White Western race. We Indians won our physical freedom 73 years ago, but in our heads, we are still enslaved to the White man. This enslavement hampers us from creating a society and systems that work for us, and even from having sufficient respect for ourselves and our own way of life.
It is time for us to stop taking all our cues from the West and to regard their definition of progress as the only right one. It is certainly time to rethink their notion of Economics which is tearing the planet apart. It is time to critically evaluate all their inventions and reject what won’t work for us.
Let us begin with the suit. What business do we Indians—at least those of us who live in the hotter parts of the country—have to do with this completely inappropriate outfit when we have many types of elegant and weather-friendly attire of our own such as the dhoti-kurta, and the kurta-pyjama? Also, do we really need dams and giant industries, or can we accommodate our lifestyle to Nature’s dictates as we once did?
In order to decide what to take and what to reject from the West, can we look at what would stem naturally from the philosophy of this land? India is, perhaps, the only civilisation that saw enlightenment as the purpose of human life. All our systems were oriented towards attaining this purpose, arising from the understanding that Oneness is the basic truth of life, for the Creator and created are one. It follows that all of existence is interconnected and divine.
The New World that might just arise out of the debris of the corona-infested world will have its basis in Oneness. Therefore, if we are to be useful to the creation of the alternative world, we will have to free ourselves of Western domination. Only then will we be able to create a world where all of us can raise our voices equally in the grand symphony of humanity. No one race can take upon itself the right to rule the rest of humanity.
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