There are people who fail to welcome knowledge from all sources. They are highly prejudiced individuals, never having the willingness to learn and respect ancient wisdom .They tend to believe “ignorance is strength” and in the ultimate analysis firmly believe in the philosophy, as it were, that wisdom is foolishness. The world today in such a crisis ridden stage due to the dominance of such individuals at all levels. This works havoc in society and leaves its chain effects when the leaders firmly subscribe to this philosophy. Let us consider some examples for enlightenment and to get an insight into their thinking.
There is an old verse which says” Let noble thoughts come to us from every side.” According to this all would benefit by having an open mind receptive to ideas which are considered good for humanity. An example of such wise sayings is given below:
Sow a thought, reap an idea
Sow an idea, reap an act
Sow an act, reap a character
Sow a character and reap a destiny.
This simple verse has great potential for human excellence. Every action originates from thoughts. Nobler the thoughts the nobler the actions. Such actions result in excellent character, rich in values. A person of character always thinks positively and does only good for society. He has a commitment for service. He is not and cannot be corrupt.
He is prepared to sacrifice his comforts, resources and time for the benefit of society. His satisfaction and happiness arise from a sense of fulfilment and not self aggrandizement and embezzlement. With such a sterling character he contributes to the collective welfare and happiness of society. This is seen when society consists of more and more of such individuals. This is ensured if society has more of such leaders.
Leaders who belong to the category of dedicated individuals really achieve great goals. Nothing is impossible for them. History is replete with names of several such leaders who appeared on the world scene on different occasions. Abraham Lincoln, Mahatma Gandhi, Winston Churchill are some examples.
In all these cases and of many others the leaders derived considerable strength from spiritual sources. They had immense faith in themselves and in a supernatural spiritual power. This enabled them to work hard with great discipline. Because of their sincerity and their matching of words and actions, promise and performance, they could inspire millions to work hard and achieve national goals. They were men of sterling character. They never had a trace of greed or corruption in their blood and actions.
In contrast to these intellectual giants and men of achievement, we have a new breed of human animals occupying leadership positions as well as other roles in society. They are unable to deliver the desired results. They decry anyone having spiritual strength and those who have demonstrated the benefits of deriving strength and inspiration from ancient wisdom. They openly say it is foolish to follow their ideals and dismiss adherence to wisdom on grounds of practicality.
They talk and appreciate of character only in public platforms. They advocate tact, strategy, diplomacy etc., as effective tools of modern administration not realizing or admitting these are other names for outright cut- throatism, chicanery, and skull duggery and cheating.
In business also we see this phenomenon gaining strength and popularity. The result is that the economy is mismanaged with a distorted order of priorities pushing millions towards poverty, penury and pestilence. It does not enter the heads of these men of straw who somehow are elevated to positions of authority, that there is an ennobling factor as ‘character ‘which if developed in the nation by using the techniques made available in our ancient wisdom, will make life happier, richer and enjoyable for all. In addition this will eliminate corruption, improve quality of education and decision making.
It will ensure all round economic and cultural progress with sustainability in all desirable levels of human activity. The only exception is the gang of leaders and men who subscribe, though implicitly, to the philosophy of equating wisdom with foolishness to cover their ignorance, incompetence and indifference to real progress. We can only pray that this trend is reversed in the nearest future.