The human race in its maddening search for technological success and material comforts has self-willed itself to extinction. According to Darwin’s theory of evolution, ‘species keep on evolving towards the goal of constant survival’, unless, of course, they wish themselves to extinction as happened in the case of the dinosaurs and similar gigantic creatures. Today’s human beings, knowingly or unknowingly, have taken the resolve to a path of suicide and ultimate disappearance from the face of the earth (how much Mother Nature will rejoice at this event!).
Consider the following:
The rich, the powerful, the educated urban elite along with the leaders with vested interest, constituting a minority of the human population, continue to believe that economic development is the cure all for all that is plaguing the humans society despite the stark fact that all this present model of economic development has given us –
- Hunger - The number of hungry people in the world has gone up from 843 million in 1990 to more than 1.0 billion
- Poverty - There have been 270 million deaths due to poverty in the world since 1990
- Disparity - The richest 16% of the world’s population receives 84% of the world’s annual income
- Earnings - 1.2 billion people in the world earn less than $1 per day
- Drinking water - 1.1 billion people have no access to safe drinking water in the world
- Illiteracy - 1.3 billion people in the world are illiterate
- War deaths - There have been 4 million war deaths since 1990 in the world and unending wars continue to be fought
Despite the green revolution with a second green revolution being planned by the developing nations, we continue to shut our eyes to the fact that –
- The use of fertilizers and pesticides have made our soil infertile.
- The hybrid and genetic seeds, promising ever-increase in crop production have led to disappearance of indigenous seeds developed by nature over centuries.
- Forced purchase of seeds, fertilizers and pesticides by poor farmers have resulted in indebtedness and consequent suicides in the rural community.
- The fertilizer, pesticide and seed Companies have ironically amassed unlimited wealth from the same land from which the farmer has been unable to eke out a living despite 24-hours of physical toil and hard labor
- The hand that produces our food continues to wither away whereas we become fatter and fatter
- We all know that food is a must for our survival, yet we insist on the farmer giving up his fertile land for large and heavy industries, mega-power plants, large dams, highways , airports, etc., thus reducing the acreage for our food production, all this with the false hope that more food can be produced with less land with our ‘brilliant’ technological advancement
- We continue to direct all our so-called development process to urban centers, creating employment opportunities there, resulting in massive migration of rural youth to urban areas. This mirage of development and running after the non-existent golden egg by the rural youth is producing bulging and unmanageable cities with squalid slums which are bursting at the seams and becoming centers of constant discontent and violence.
- We continue to label anger and discontent against the current development process as naxalism, Maoism, terrorism, etc., thus setting up two opposite sides for violent combat intent on destroying each other to produce the silence of peace without human beings. It is interesting to observe that of all the animal species, human beings seem to be the only one who are intent on killing one another through the violent process.
- We are obsessed with the thought that one race is superior to another, one ideology is better for the entire human race, one method of thinking must take precedence over others and consequently wage wars and battles to gain the high ground, sacrificing lives in the process. Paradoxically, we swear by the non-violence of Gautam Budha, Jesus Christ, Mahatma Gandhi, Martin Luther King, Tolstoy, Rabindranath, Nelson Mandela, Dalai Lama and a host of other personalities whom we deify.
- We continue to believe that economic development is far superior to such mundane ideas as social development, moral growth, human values, community involvement, family unity, self-sacrifice, truth and non-violence. Money is our god and he can defeat all other inferior gods. The educated sincerely believe that end justifies any means, lies and dishonesty are all right if they help us to achieve our money goals, there is no such thing as good or bad, self is far more important than others on the planet and so on.
- We refuse to ponder over the above vital issues facing mankind in our mad rush fior increased wealth, power, monopoly, dictatorship, unlimited consumption and insatiable greed. We have no time to pause and ponder over the devastation we have created because our goal continues to be that pot of gold over the horizon.
Incidentally, someone has suggested, perhaps jokingly, I hope, that the human race has evolved into a species with genes that are now programmed to take the human race to extinction and mankind has become unknowingly self-destructive.
If all above is really true, why should not the human race become extinct? If not, why are we afraid to debate the issues openly?
Dialogue not silence is the answer. Are you willing?