WE USED TO BE ‘CITIZENS’. NOW WE ARE ‘CONSUMERS’…
In ancient stories (especially in myths, Puranas and fairy tales) we read lot about “Asareeri” (divine or celestial voice). Its literal meaning is some sound or human voice without a physical human body.
If somebody hears an “Asareeri” asking him/her do something, he/she does according to the instructions in the voice. They believed that this voice is a command from the god. In modern world, we pooh-pooh them as “nuts”. Hearing voices are considered by psychiatry as an auditory hallucination and as a symptom of conditions such as schizophrenic disorders, manic depression and psychosis.
Now people hear a commercial for Margherita or Stromboli pizza and rush out to buy, but now they call this free will. This Asareeri is not psychosis for them. Listening to some commercial about oil for baldness, people flock into shops to buy it. There is no cure for baldness. Still you don’t call the followers mentally sick. Why? We know, every decision in the world is now commanded by commercials and media market. What should I wipe myself with? What should I brush with? What should be the colour of my under-wear? These Asareeris will decide for us. All we can do is follow it like zombie.
We want to claim that you are modern, trendy and scientific – but the truth is that your mind is in the hands of the cultural engineers who want to turn us into a half-baked moron consuming all this trash that’s being manufactured out of the bones of a dying world.
Agreed, humans love money, riches, and material things—though he/she never really could understand why. The more technologically advanced the human species got, the more isolated they seemed to become.
The Homo sapiens now became the strangest creature in the earth that spending their lives doing things they detest, to make money they don’t want, to buy things they don’t need, to impress people they don’t like! We call it progress.
At least the ancient people who were hearing “Asareeri” were being very honest – they didn’t become party to kill the earth.
The earth and human life have co-evolved, with human life playing a significant role in determining earth’s climate, and climate change had its crucial impact on evolution of human species.
Now, reflect on this:
Our ancestors explained about three types of vrittis (mode of life):
- Angahara Vritti = you burn the forest to get some coal or firewood.
- Malaka Vritti = you take the flowers from the forest, but leaving the trees or plants.
- Madhukara Vritti = you are like a bee, which takes only honey from the flowers.
What the modern, developed, rich countries do?
They destroyed the entire resources (that the earth stored for its living beings for millions of years), just for the sake of a couple of generation. Any resource in the earth belongs to all its population and all its creatures. But the rich nations were considering that they are the owners of this resources. Though the West and Middle-East were masters of exploitations, it is not a denying factor that modern India and other countries follow suit.
Just a few people make money out of the resources (which really belongs to all earthlings) for their comforts and pleasure. They made you believe: “We’re consumers. We are by-products of a lifestyle obsession. Miseries, murder, crime, poverty, calamities and these things don’t concern me. What concerns me is celebrity magazines, television with 300 channels, and some guy’s name on my underwear…” And we believe in that Asareeri.
This is known as Angahara Vritti = Consumerism.
Now the rich nations have made enough money and power. It seems suddenly they turn eco-friendly. They form green party. They talk big philosophies about environment. And they went to the extend of advising “us” to be eco-friendly. And they even caution you against exploiting the earth resources.
Their love for environment is mere hypocrisy. But it is good to see that they, at least, talk about the Malaka Vritti = get the best flower, but don’t kill the trees.
Thousands of years ago, our ancestors taught us to follow Madhukara Vritti, like a honey bee. You take sweet, make it sweeter and give it to others. During the process you help pollination, thus become part of beautiful creation. And you die without gaining anything personal, but giving the world the most pure sweetest honey!
“If this can be your philosophy, then you will be happy; take the minimum, give the maximum,” they said. And they prayed: “Loka Samastha Sukhino Bavanthu” (May all the beings in all the worlds become happy). They have seen the entire earthlings as “vasudhaiva kuṭumbakam” (the whole world is one single family) and prayed for the welfare of entire world. They taught us to share and care entire resources in the world.
And, according to our ancestors, the purpose of life should be based on Madhukar Vritti. They called it Karma Yoga. Having known oneself, one moves from person to person, sucking the honey from them and imparting them self knowledge. Resources are to share – it is a basic right for every human being and every creature in this planet.
Our ancestors thought about life in the planet and kept the resources for us. Shouldn’t we think about our descendants? Don’t they have rights to live in the world? Shouldn’t we at least try re-establishment of an ecological balance? Or is it that market, politics, religion and entertainment are more important than human rights? At least to the extent possible by us: Can’t we at least cross-check if the “Asareeri” that we hear is for real before following it as a zombie?
Let’s be like a honey bee – Let’s share the sweet nectar of life…
~ By Udaylal Pai