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Re: [alt-ed-india] Be silent, consume, die

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  • Satish Natarajan
    Dear Shalini, Sorry for not replying earlier, I was out of town. Yes, I agree with you on one aspect, ie., separating ourselves from the world. That is
    Message 1 of 31 , May 2, 2008
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      Dear Shalini,

      Sorry for not replying earlier, I was out of town.

      Yes, I agree with you on one aspect, ie., separating ourselves from the world.  That is exactly what is required to be done, but not just mentally.  It should not just end up with an idea in the head.  It should resonate with our lives.  But that does not stop us from acting.  We need to act and as long as we separate ourselves from the world, our action will not bind us, will not entangle us.  Today that is required.  We cannot remain passive spectators.  We seem to agree that all is not well, but we seem to want to remain as spectators.  Somewhere deeply our inaction seem to come up because we want to be seen as the "nice guy" or from fear of being hurt.

      These days we seem to have accepted a lot of things without even questioning the basis for it and we also justify it sometimes by taking the stand of not being entangled.  When we start questioning from our deepest core of being and act from there, I believe it just does not create any divisiveness inside or outside.  But not asking questions with the fear of hurting can create that disturbance inside us.

      To quote from "Small is beautiful" by E.F.Schumacher

      "[A modern economist] is used to measuring the 'standard of living' by the amount of annual consumption, assuming all the time that a man who consumes more is 'better off' that a man who consumes less. A Buddhist economist would consider this approach excessively irrational: since consumption is merely a means to human well-being, the aim should be to obtain the maximum of well-being with the minimum of consumption. . . . The less toil there is, the more time and strength is left for artistic creativity. Modern economics, on the other hand, considers consumption to be the sole end and purpose of all economic activity."
      "It is clear, therefore, that Buddhist economics must be very different from the economics of modern materialism, since the Buddhist sees the essence of civilisation not in a multiplication of wants but in the purification of human character. Character, at the same time, is formed primarily by a man's work. And work, properly conducted in conditions of human dignity and freedom, blesses those who do it and equally their products."
      "The most striking about modern industry is that it requires so much and accomplishes so little. Modern industry seems to be inefficient to a degree that surpasses one's ordinary powers of imagination. Its inefficiency therefore remains unnoticed."

      Our dialogue is explore this development theory of the modern(Western) economists/scientists about having to do more, learn more, know more, consume more and do little towards exploring our own selves, the movement that happens inside us.  We escape that by doing lots of things, reading too much, consuming too much being too busy.

      Regards
      Satish

      Shalini Sekhar <write.shalini@...> wrote:
      Dear Satish,

      No, of course one cannot say "people exist on both sides and what can we do about it?". It just seems to me that it is of fundamental importance for this process of separating ourselves from the world to end. As long as this process continues, whatever we do to battle current circumstances, we will only tangle ourselves up in other ways, won't we?

      From this ground, being very sensitive to any divisive movement that arises, we can start to explore this particular issue.

      Warmly,
      Shalini


      On Sat, Apr 26, 2008 at 9:54 PM, Satish Natarajan <satish_en@...> wrote:
      Dear Shalini,

      Thanks for raising these questions.  I know it is not fair to look at us vs them.  We are weak so we are ready to be manipulated, targets to be manipulated.  But is that enough to just say that -- insecure, callous and selfish -- people exist on both sides and what can we do about it??

      The problem is we are reaching a very dangerous situation.  Lets say we do not watch TV, we do not go and shop, but what is happening is we are also affected by this madness whether we participate in it or not.  The price rise that is happening for Petroleum products and food products is going to touch everyone whether we like it or not.  The madness is becoming unbearable, that is the reason we are all looking for alternative ways of keeping our children free from the effects of such madness. 

      The reactions to all this will happen, it is bound to happen.  It can happen in any number of ways.  But we don't seem to want these reactions also to happen.  I remember in one of the talks given in Bangalore, Vandana Shiva was saying the problems that the farmer is facing does not touch many of us.  But we can easily see the effect of it.  Infact she had mentioned many strange reactions we would end up seeing and the problem in Maharashtra about North Indians is one of them.   Now I know we seem to look at everything as a problem - Fundamentalism, terrorism, poverty etc etc.  But these are the effects and cause lies elsewhere. 

      I remember when I was a student in college, development meant a great thing, good roads were always welcome, roads were more important than trees.  Now in Bangalore felling of trees has become a disease which cannot be stopped.  The heat in the city is becoming unbearable.  Property prices are obscenely high.  Somewhere we never questioned if we were going in the right direction.  Now we seem to be sitting in a train which does not have any way to stop, is going downwards and picking up speed.  We know we are going to be in a train wreck and all we can do is just smile and accept the fact.  We not only have to know we are going to be in a train wreck, we also need to somehow find a way to stop it, even if it means some of us getting hurt in the process. 

      Let this debate go on.  This is really important for us and for the children also.

      Regards
      Satish




      Shalini Sekhar <write.shalini@...> wrote:
      The question that comes is what are these 'corporations' that we feel manipulate and use us? Aren't they just the same mind -- insecure, callous and selfish -- don't these corporations consist just of people like us? People who want to cover up a deep insecurity by doing all kinds of things, getting addicted to all kinds of things, using and manipulating people and the natural world in all kinds of ways. However subtle these ways may be, isn't it still the same mind and the same insecurity?

      I can't see the difference between the corporation and the people who are duped into buying things they don't need, to be secure, popular or in fashion.

      Shalini




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    • vinay nair
      Hi Satish, Just to say how I view this whole interaction, it is repeatedly all about humans- economics, consumption, feeling unsure about living a life of less
      Message 31 of 31 , May 5, 2008
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        Hi Satish,

        Just to say how I view this whole interaction, it is repeatedly all about humans- economics, consumption, feeling unsure about living a life of less stress/ less consumption, what will others feel, my family has to be thought about etc. ALL ABOUT HUMANS.

         

        1. AGRICULTURE- ABOUT HUMANS.

        2. ECNOMICS- ABOUT HUMANS.

        3. INSECURE FEELINGS- ABOUT HUMANS.

        4. MORE ABOUT HUMANS.

        Everything is about one species & particularly, one culture- CULTURE OF MAXIMUM HARM. What about others? Just no space for Fellow humans with different approaches, other species. The web of life has a connectedness & wholesomeness that includes ALL. You take away one link that is crucial to a species & it is likely on its way out.

         

        How do you possibly understand all this? By looking around & identifying ways that have worked which creation & evolution have accepted because they worked. What doesn't work, perishes? We are the culture who, amazingly,  have best described reasonably well what worked & what didn't in books, learnings, data etc. But why does it not touch all of us. Because it is not our WAY, our CULTURAL VISION. If it is one, it would be enacted by that people living the WAY & not 'educated about' in classes. The people, most of them, who have described it had to go through a gruelling 'education system' to 'specialize' in anthropology, history, environmental ways etc- basically what is hurting this planet & what is not.

         

        Some of the WAYs that worked did this as a matter of cultural vision, passed down generation after generation, such that some of those cultural visions have been identified by 'our culture of maximim- everything' as tremendous successes. But only by those few who 'studied' or 'educated' in those fields. We do not enact a cultural vision that is acceptable to us, leave alone evolution.

         

        We have this need to 'prove' ourselves to be worthy. All religions & all teachings push that idea. If only we understood that we are worthy if creation has brought us here & accepted us ALONG WITH OTHERS, without the need to labelling it as worthy of humans, intelligent, advanced way of living & a such degrading dicrimination.

         

        Even budhism starts from your lacking & then acheving 'worth'. Every littlest to biggest thing that creation gave forward had a worth. That which had a 'worthy' working way, survived & that which doesn't will be on that train, no matter what you do.

         

        Forgetting & ignoring the 'WAY' will get you on that train very fast.. In the timescale of evolution, 11000 yrs is a mere wink. You need a legacy of something that has tasted success 'FOR ALL' for a much longer time.

         

        Till recently we were not anywhere in the rat race of maximum harm, which the west has had the distinction of doing. Now, we too are on the way. But meantime, the intergenerational trauma triggered from about 11000 yrs ago was preparing us to be in a reasonable disturbed state to accept the ' culture of maximum harm'. And the intergenerational trauma triggered by our cultural vision-ONLY ABOUT HUMANS- is the foundation of our rapacious behaviour.

         

        All efforts to do something different & preferably less, giving us time for feeling secure, worthy, healings that are needed very regularly for mind & body, would help lead to quieten down this turmoil in the cultural vision. Many were practicing this for millions of yrs which led to their acceptance by evolution & creation.

         

        What works, WILL SURVIVE. What doesn't. will mercifully perish. So that what survives has a better chance to be accepted by creation.

         

        ALL THE BEST TO 'ALL OF US' ON THIS PLANET.

        Vinay..  

        --- On Sat, 3/5/08, Satish Natarajan <satish_en@...> wrote:

        From: Satish Natarajan <satish_en@...>
        Subject: Re: [alt-ed-india] Be silent, consume, die
        To: alt-ed-india@yahoogroups.com
        Date: Saturday, 3 May, 2008, 10:57 AM

        Dear Shalini,

        Sorry for not replying earlier, I was out of town.

        Yes, I agree with you on one aspect, ie., separating ourselves from the world.  That is exactly what is required to be done, but not just mentally.  It should not just end up with an idea in the head.  It should resonate with our lives.  But that does not stop us from acting.  We need to act and as long as we separate ourselves from the world, our action will not bind us, will not entangle us.  Today that is required.  We cannot remain passive spectators.  We seem to agree that all is not well, but we seem to want to remain as spectators.  Somewhere deeply our inaction seem to come up because we want to be seen as the "nice guy" or from fear of being hurt.

        These days we seem to have accepted a lot of things without even questioning the basis for it and we also justify it sometimes by taking the stand of not being entangled.  When we start questioning from our deepest core of being and act from there, I believe it just does not create any divisiveness inside or outside.  But not asking questions with the fear of hurting can create that disturbance inside us.

        To quote from "Small is beautiful" by E.F.Schumacher

        "[A modern economist] is used to measuring the 'standard of living' by the amount of annual consumption, assuming all the time that a man who consumes more is 'better off' that a man who consumes less. A Buddhist economist would consider this approach excessively irrational: since consumption is merely a means to human well-being, the aim should be to obtain the maximum of well-being with the minimum of consumption. . . . The less toil there is, the more time and strength is left for artistic creativity. Modern economics, on the other hand, considers consumption to be the sole end and purpose of all economic activity."

        "It is clear, therefore, that Buddhist economics must be very different from the economics of modern materialism, since the Buddhist sees the essence of civilisation not in a multiplication of wants but in the purification of human character. Character, at the same time, is formed primarily by a man's work. And work, properly conducted in conditions of human dignity and freedom, blesses those who do it and equally their products."
        "The most striking about modern industry is that it requires so much and accomplishes so little. Modern industry seems to be inefficient to a degree that surpasses one's ordinary powers of imagination. Its inefficiency therefore remains unnoticed."

        Our dialogue is explore this development theory of the modern(Western) economists/scientis ts about having to do more, learn more, know more, consume more and do little towards exploring our own selves, the movement that happens inside us.  We escape that by doing lots of things, reading too much, consuming too much being too busy.

        Regards
        Satish

        Shalini Sekhar <write.shalini@ gmail.com> wrote:
        Dear Satish,

        No, of course one cannot say "people exist on both sides and what can we do about it?". It just seems to me that it is of fundamental importance for this process of separating ourselves from the world to end. As long as this process continues, whatever we do to battle current circumstances, we will only tangle ourselves up in other ways, won't we?

        From this ground, being very sensitive to any divisive movement that arises, we can start to explore this particular issue.

        Warmly,
        Shalini


        On Sat, Apr 26, 2008 at 9:54 PM, Satish Natarajan <satish_en@yahoo. com> wrote:
        Dear Shalini,

        Thanks for raising these questions.  I know it is not fair to look at us vs them.  We are weak so we are ready to be manipulated, targets to be manipulated.  But is that enough to just say that -- insecure, callous and selfish -- people exist on both sides and what can we do about it??

        The problem is we are reaching a very dangerous situation.  Lets say we do not watch TV, we do not go and shop, but what is happening is we are also affected by this madness whether we participate in it or not.  The price rise that is happening for Petroleum products and food products is going to touch everyone whether we like it or not.  The madness is becoming unbearable, that is the reason we are all looking for alternative ways of keeping our children free from the effects of such madness. 

        The reactions to all this will happen, it is bound to happen.  It can happen in any number of ways.  But we don't seem to want these reactions also to happen.  I remember in one of the talks given in Bangalore, Vandana Shiva was saying the problems that the farmer is facing does not touch many of us.  But we can easily see the effect of it.  Infact she had mentioned many strange reactions we would end up seeing and the problem in Maharashtra about North Indians is one of them.   Now I know we seem to look at everything as a problem - Fundamentalism, terrorism, poverty etc etc.  But these are the effects and cause lies elsewhere. 

        I remember when I was a student in college, development meant a great thing, good roads were always welcome, roads were more important than trees.  Now in Bangalore felling of trees has become a disease which cannot be stopped.  The heat in the city is becoming unbearable.  Property prices are obscenely high.  Somewhere we never questioned if we were going in the right direction.  Now we seem to be sitting in a train which does not have any way to stop, is going downwards and picking up speed..  We know we are going to be in a train wreck and all we can do is just smile and accept the fact.  We not only have to know we are going to be in a train wreck, we also need to somehow find a way to stop it, even if it means some of us getting hurt in the process. 

        Let this debate go on.  This is really important for us and for the children also.

        Regards
        Satish




        Shalini Sekhar <write.shalini@ gmail.com> wrote:
        The question that comes is what are these 'corporations' that we feel manipulate and use us? Aren't they just the same mind -- insecure, callous and selfish -- don't these corporations consist just of people like us? People who want to cover up a deep insecurity by doing all kinds of things, getting addicted to all kinds of things, using and manipulating people and the natural world in all kinds of ways. However subtle these ways may be, isn't it still the same mind and the same insecurity?

        I can't see the difference between the corporation and the people who are duped into buying things they don't need, to be secure, popular or in fashion.

        Shalini




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