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The God of the 20th Century

Tuesday July 12 2005 09:42 IST

By Karmayogi

Religion, race, and language often become a bone of contention. The Crusades were fought over a sacred religious spot. There is a lot of truth in those forces. But there is always an overriding factor. In each period MAN is after something survival, territorial integrity, living standards, patriotism, honour of the sacred soil, etc. That is the God of that period. All the other things are lip service. Capitalism, socialism, communism are beside the point for the masses, if the God of that period is not honoured. Russia stood for communism. The popular idea was America swore by capitalism. Abolish the visa requirements and allow free immigration as the USA did in the 16th and 17th centuries, and regardless of isms, populations would move towards a land of prosperity in a great exodus.

Rising standard of living was the God of the 20th century and it will be so until Asia and Africa become prosperous. Ramanujam refused to go to Cambridge in the twenties, as he was an orthodox Brahmin and crossing the ocean was impermissible to his orthodoxy. It is true the religious scruple is a block, but only up to a point. When that point of tolerance is crossed, MAN is carried on the wave of the period. In a period of patriotic fervour, MONEY will lose its lure. There are times when Man is willing to die for his religion or to defend his nation. It is true. A greater truth is the dominant wave of the century or the period or the age. It is something that compels. Mans dominant urges find themselves subservient to that cause.

The twentieth century witnessed a phenomenal rise in the standard of living all over the world. Today India is at $500 while the USA was at $750 in the thirties and from there she has now crossed $30,000. No more is Man bound by isms, religions, national pride, etc. He wants to raise his standard. When the Soviet Union asked for 6000 skilled workers, from the USA alone 100,000 volunteered to come in the 1920s. The cause of a period is called the evolutionary tide. Nothing can stem that tide while it is on the ascendant. It is my personal view that the 21st century will espouse another greater cause. It will not be a cause of patriotism, honour, religion, race or anything that has actuated Man up until now. It will be the cause of the emerging Spiritual Individual. He will value his freedom, his own personal views, his own prerogative to protect his individuality. It is not social individualism or psychological independence, but the INDIVIDUALITY of his Spiritual Being.

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