I begin with a quotation of Gandhiji where he said, "I believe in absolute oneness of God and, therefore, also of humanity." This captures so well the basic philosophy of India, contained in the concept of `Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam` - the world is one family. It enjoins upon us to treat fellow human beings as if they were our own family. This thinking is an outcome of a profound understanding of the inter-connectivity and inter-dependability of human beings on one another. In today`s era of globalization, an echo of this is heard, when the world is described as a global village, and where all human beings are required to be good global citizens to promote global good.
Of course, each individual is an important entity. The collective world that we are building is dependent on individual behaviour. The macrocosm is, hence, a product of microcosm. This again is an ancient truth. Our lives are not isolated islands; rather we are living in close proximity with each other. Each one has to be deeply conscious of the reality, that there will be peace and harmony in our environs, only if there is peace in our minds. For it is then only, that we will seek to live in peace with fellow humans and nature. For communities to live in harmony we need to have human beings, with qualities of love and compassion, who work to create calm and concord. The purpose of our lives must go beyond self-satisfaction. Concern for humanity and desire to alleviate suffering has always been an exemplary thought and action for individuals and society. It requires a spirit of giving and a spirit of generosity. Nature contains this basic message. It is said in one of our Shlokas:
Trees give fruits for the benefit of others
Rivers flow for helping others
Cows give milk for others
So, also our lives are for helping others.
Human beings have immense potential to rise above narrow considerations and to strive for broader welfare. This can happen
when our thoughts, attitudes, emotions and...