The Law of the Jungle

By Swami Dr Snehananda Jyoti on 16-06-2011

Status of the World –24

The
World I like to live in – Conclusion (Continued): Before I write further about
the world I like to live in, it is important to high-light a few points about
the world we actually live in. Let us have a cursory glance at what is
happening, what is generally valued and appreciated. The current world, whether
we like it or not, is practically directed by the maxim: might is right – the law of the jungle.  This general truth or rule of conduct is
morally universally repudiated and is socially undesirable, and yet is in
effect at every level. It is the basis of threats, intimidation, and
domination. Colonization, invasions for empire-building, every form of
discrimination, subjugation, and persecution known throughout history,
violation of human rights and abuse were maintained by this principle. Brutal
monarchs and dictators and every authoritarian government clung to power
through it. The world has shown and still continues to show all that ultimately
works is brutal power and pelf.  It is
only a mindless and immoral world that can compete in arms race and stock-pile
weapons of mass destruction at the expense of the poor and the oppressed
everywhere in the world going to sleep every night hungry. It is interesting
how in the past many Christian missionaries intent on preaching the gospel of
love of Jesus Christ to the natives ignored the greed and violence of their
colonizing compatriots with militia that they accompanied. But then there were
medieval theologians who developed a convenient theology of the divine right of
kings to justify and preserve the institution of monarchy.

Humanity
and civilization right from its inception got a bad rap. Human beings fallen
from God’s grace and rendered defective through the so-called disobedience, and
substantially altered through the so-called original sin needed a savior to
redeem humanity from eternal damnation, to set things straight, and restore
human nature to its near (because human nature will never be the same as the
pre-fall days) pristine purity. This world-view predominantly advocated by the
most powerful religions in the world, Christianity and Islam, have done immense
harm to humanity. Hinduism talks about Kala
sarpa dosha (in Hindu astrology, obstruction or misfortune caused by stars
in certain positions; Kala = death, Sarpa = snake) and Karma dosha (sin due to bad individual deed) that all are
subjected to. Buddhism gives some break to humanity in that a human can get liberated
without divine intervention. What a way to begin life on this earth with this
kind of essential handicap?! What kind of God would permit this kind of defect?
Is God making a point that humans cannot really handle freedom? When one begins
with a substantial defect, one has to be aware of one’s own utter unworthiness.
Is that what God really wants?  The
eastern view mainly represented by Hinduism and Buddhism give importance to the
human role. While Hinayana Buddhism does not require any divine intervention,
and thinks of Buddha as an effective model, Hinduism especially represented by
Gandhi sees a role for a Supreme Being or God equated with truth in practical
living. I always had and still have difficulty with human beings born in
original sin. Similarly I have difficulty with a God, who is supposed to be the
Great Loving Father/Mother condemning humans to eternal hell. What I am driving
at is that our present world has been deeply programmed by certain greatly
damaging religious thought patterns that require long overdue revision. I
comment on the role of religions here because religions deeply affect the way
people live their lives. (To be continued).

About The Author

Swami Dr Snehananda Jyoti

Dr. John K Thekkedam (Swami Snehananda Jyoti) spent most of his life as a clinical psychologist in USA. He began his public life as a Jesuit priest. Quite attracted in distinct philosophies, he left the society and founded 'East West Awakening'.