Direction

There is a lot wrong with the world. A deeply elevated spiritual person may say that everything is in it’s right place and cannot be any other way. Sure, this is one way of looking at things. But by looking at things in this manner not much is going to change. To change things it becomes necessary to come down a few levels into the world and realize that things are not how and where they should be.

Are we going in the right direction? Let’s take for instance the preponderance of technology (bear in mind that I am a technologist by profession and a scientist by nature and hence hold no prejudices against technology). Where is this taking us? Are we better off than we were say 20 or 50 years ago? Depends — on what is meant by better. Sure, a lot of things have become easier. But what about the mind which is being bombarded from all directions by information, news, notifications, social updates, offers, texts, tweets, emails, snaps and cat and koala pictures? Can the mind handle this? Even if it can, should it? After all, most meditative practices, whether spiritual or otherwise advocate silencing the mind. Many management and productivity practices also advocate focus and single-mindedness. Can we remember this? I mean not for a minute or an hour or a day. But constantly. What are we sacrificing by over-indulging in technology? Had we not had so much technology or so many disruptions around us, could we have been developing some other faculties? Seriously, could we?

Anyway, I digress. Even apart from the technological proliferation a lot remains wrong with the world. And it’s not any one person’s fault. In fact, it’s probably nobody’s fault. It’s our own. Each of us are at fault. Since we aren’t making an effort to step back and realize that a lot is wrong and then to figure out what really is needed to fix it. What are we missing and what is that we yearn after and that is so fleeting that despite a lifetime being spent we never obtain it? And if so, are we chasing something that we shouldn’t be? Maybe our whole premise is incorrect. Maybe we should be re-thinking our entire approach and our attitude towards life, towards our situation. Our situation of having been put on this planet under constraints — constraints of our bodies, and our minds (let’s admit that our bodies as well as our minds are imperfect instruments and leave a lot to be desired). What then is the purpose of being in this situation? Can we change it? Can we REALLY change it? I mean, I’m not talking about discovering penicillin but something more fundamental. Not a band-aid but something more essential, deeper which changes the equation?

Let’s at least acknowledge that we are in a situation together — all 7 billion of us — and then maybe some of us can also agree that a deeper understanding is needed as a first step to fixing what is not currently in order.

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