Friday, March 25, 2011

Hidden Treasure Series - Part III - On ‘Values’


My dear Brethren from across this universe,

Often films and books portray with varied characters depicting degradation of values. We do see in real life-from prisoners to politicians, from celebrities to commoner, isn’t it?

What are ‘Values’?

What are ‘values’, THEN? Do they differ from place to place, time to time? Are there universal values?

Read on…

GRK: Advance birthday wishes Ravi. I understand that you are in your early forties and getting naughty as well!

Ravi: A warm welcome to you Shri. GRK. Thank you so much for your wishes. Don’t you know that I’m always naughty, as I wish to be child-like, with spontaneous joy and laughter? Also I don’t complicate LIFE.

GRK: Hmmm. Ravi, that leaves me wondering about “What happened to mankind? Where are his/her values? Instead of making his/her life a spontaneous joy, have these values NOT made his life on earth more miserable?

Ravi: Do you mean that human beings don’t need to have values?

GRK: You got it wrong, Ravi. Look, under the name of ‘value of patriotism’, one nation is massacring the people of other nations. Under the name of ‘value of hard work’, one section of people are exploiting the other. Under the name of ‘value of character’, (especially sex based) we have made men and women sinners. Under the name of ‘value of justice’, (in the courts) we have jailed and tortured people. All these under the name of values, my dear!!!

Ravi: As you SAY now, my blood boils hearing the plight of the hapless Libyans being bombarded and torn between the UN forces and its own dictator. BTW, what are ‘values’? Please could you define it for our better understanding?

GRK: Sure. Values are cherished feelings; they are the measuring rods with which we measure people, things and actions. They are the barometers to judge the people and their actions. However, values are discretory in nature; such as right or wrong, good/bad, truth/untruth etc.

Ravi, often people talk about the values and about their worth and need in life. There are many values. Perhaps mankind’s curse is that we are obsessed with innumerable values-like value of patriotism, value of character, (especially sex controlled behavior), value of propriety and value of truth etc.  From sunshine to sunset and beyond, we are obsessed with values, in our food (veg/non-veg), in our dress (mini/maxi), sex life (monogamy/polygamy) and in all other contexts of life.                           

Ravi: Are values valid for all times, at all places?

GRK: No. Not at all. Many of the values are relative in nature and vary from time to time, place to place, country to country and from one section of people to the other. For instance, patriotism as a value, has different meanings for two fighting nations.  Same way, monogamy-based character has different meanings to different religions.

What are universal values?

Ravi: Does this mean that there are no universal values?

GRK: Good question, my boy. Of course, there are universal values and they are very few in number. The foremost value is the ‘value of life’ or value of ‘self preservation’. Humans need to take care of themselves first. Both their physical bodies and their ‘mind’ as well. Most women, after childbirth, in India, seldom take care of their physical bodies, the gift of nature!

Ravi: Well said, now I understand how you remain ‘fighting fit’ even when you are about to become a septuagenarian! Your long walks everyday thereby sweating out must be THE secret of your ENERGY and drive...

GRK: Well said Ravi. ‘Sweating out’ everyday increases the immune power in humans. I guess there is lot of awareness in India today. Take your pick – be it swimming, skipping, playing games like badminton and tennis OR atleast a brisk 30 min walk everyday. That’s for the body. Yoga and meditation is for the mind.

Ravi: Please do share the other Universal values as well.

GRK: The ‘value of compassion’ nay love and concern to co-beings is the next. (Not only to co-human beings!) This is essential for the peaceful and happy living on earth. Same way, the ‘value of truth’ is essential for the functioning of LIFE itself. The ‘value of peace’ which is expressed in the principles of non-interference, non-aggression and non-violence is equally universally valid. This is positively expressed in the form of peaceful co-existence among people creeds, races and nations.

Ravi: I guess this is the value that the American high-handed administration never learns!

GRK: Well, I don’t wish to increase my blood pressure talking about WHAT they have done in Vietnam / Iraq /Afghanistan and now in Libya when there are other measures to handle such situations.

Well, let’s get back to the topic.Do we really believe in these values? How many of us are conscious of these in everyday life and practice these in everyday life?” As a result, this tiny, beautiful, fragile earth became unbearable to live with-full of sorrow, cruelty, violence, exploitation inequality and cunningness, isn’t it? On the other hand, we are using the slogan of values to JUDGE people, to criticize them and EVEN to punish and torture them. Instead of accepting people as they are, and appreciating them, we are judging them all the time under the name of values. Instead of showing them the concern and compassion, we are labeling them as blacks, duller, criminals, inferiors and untouchables. Thus, values have come to stand in the way of natural and spontaneous interaction among human beings.

Ravi: Do we infer that mankind suffer from the obsession of values?

GRK: Yes, Ravi. Strangely and surprisingly, humans are the only animal, with all their advanced brain, suffers from the obsession of values. No other animal has values, neither has it talked about them to fool others. With all these values, what is the behavior of a human being? He his greedier, more selfish, crueler, more cunning and more exploiting others, than any other animal! No other animal haunts others and kills them except for its food; while humans does it for his shikari(hunting) pleasure. Even a snake does not bite except in its attempt for its self preservation, but humans back-bites the other constantly; nay stabs in the back. Dogs and cats are more loyal, while humans betrays their colleagues and masters constantly. The human, the so-called ‘image of God’, appears to be much degrading and demeaning to their very existence than any other animal.

Ravi: Could understand the ‘functional’ anger in you Shri. GRK. Shall I help you with a glass of water?

GRK: Thank you Ravi for your kindness. Moving on, in his attempt to fulfill his selfish needs and to achieve his greed, humans have violated all the natural laws, all the cannons and all the basic principles of LIFE itself. As a result, he is destroying the nature, disfiguring and polluting the earth and torturing co-human beings. Hence, we see tremendous inequality, racial prejudice, economic exploitation and social violence on the earth. Aren’t all other beings on earth living more happily and joyfully and more naturally and spontaneously than humans?

Ravi: You are painting a grim picture about the future of human kind, Shri GRK. Is it really possible for humans to get back their lost paradise- nay, happiness?

GRK: Very relevant question, Ravi. It is possible, if only humans realize that there are only very few absolute and universal values, while all other values are insignificantly relative. It is possible if only humans  begins to show a little more compassion and little more concern and little more love towards other. Humans could be compassionate and forgiving to others, when only he STOPS judging people and begins to accept them as they are-with all their limitations and inadequacies. After all, compassion multiplies lives while the so-called judgment (justice) takes away lives. Hence, compassion is the sumnum bonum and raison detre of all values nay LIFE itself.

Ravi: Awesome, Shri. GRK. Simply outstanding. Thank you so much for  this ‘sharing’. Sure, world would be a better place to live, if humans have ‘Universal values’ rather than being obsessed with ‘Relative values’.

Brethren, do you NOW agree that this ‘sharing’ is applicable for all in this universe, of all races and religions, rich or not-so-rich? I’m grateful to Shri. GRK who takes time every week to share LIFE JUICES and nuggets of wisdom through our blogs - for all of us, ofcourse! DO share with your near and dear ones, without fail.

May I  humbly request our ever-growing readers, of all ages, to ‘share’ THY views and experiences through the comment section in every blog or you may mail me @ ravi@gatesandwindows.in

Amen!

With ‘Unconditional’ Love
Ravichander Venkatraman

3 comments:

Arthi said...

Dear Sir,

This Blog makes me detest myself...every soul is born with a reason and how many of us realize and conquer the same??? we are so much involved in criticizing others that we forget that even we are not Mr. Right...
Human Values are an integral part of every culture...but how practical we are in applying these values in our day today life is a million dollar question...whichever part of the world we go...personal and social values seems to be non existent.

Suba said...

Very inspiring posts Ravi. Loved reading your talks with Shri. GRK. Why don't you put this as an E-Book and share it via your blog, linkedin,etc., will be useful to many.

appu said...

Ravi,
Sometimes, your views are coming as "bouncers' to me???!!!