We must develop a culture born of non-violence
Over the past two years, there has been growing concern across the world over the ruthless killings of whistleblowers, most of whom were brave citizens who fought for the truth at the risk of their lives. These whistleblowers play a vital role in exposing corruption, fraud, mismanagement and other wrongdoings that threaten public health and safety, financial integrity, human rights , the environment and the rule of law.
By disclosing information about such wrongdoing, these brave individuals have helped save countless lives and billions of dollars in public funds, while preventing emerging scandals and disasters from escalating. Therefore, such violent resistance to the truth and its guardians in countless cases around the world shows an extreme moral degradation of our society and the erosion of values. What kind of society would punish its whistleblowers and suppress the truth? Perhaps this is the question we all need to ask ourselves. When the muscle and the power of money are calling everywhere, it is obvious that the truth will always be on the run and the evil on the perpetual hunt.
The saying that might is right has been reinforced by the description of violent episodes in history as well as by religious writings. There are many religious scriptures that show that even the Almighty showed his power by decimating the forces of evil through violent warfare to contain injustice in the world. Therefore, the use of force to right a wrong or to discipline a wrongdoer has been adopted as the norm by humans at all levels of existence.
To change this situation, patchwork solutions will no longer suffice. Because we need a complete transformation that can emerge when we change the powers we use. From the power of force, we must now move on to the power of law and develop a culture born of non-violence.
Dismissed as a theoretical tool and reduced to mere embellishment in books, nonviolence is actually a magic wand that can protect against evil and wrongdoer. It must not be forgotten that we have already witnessed that eye-for-an-eye politics have blinded the whole world, so now we must use the power of values to connect and correct.
The great potential of non-violence must be explored – a value which asks its users to refrain from aggression not only in action but also in words and even thoughts. The simplicity of nonviolence is that it can be used by anyone and at all levels – personal, social and global. Peace, spirituality and self-reliance will be dominant in a culture nurtured by non-violence. It will naturally overflow with security and brotherhood, and all anti-social elements will soon be forced to follow the path of guilt and self-realization.
The ideals we fight and fight for today – freedom, justice and equality – will come naturally there. From a place where anything can happen to anyone at any time, the world will be transformed into a place where everything happens in the right place, at the right time, and in the right way. There, the right would not only be the right, but the right would be the force.
Is it as simple as it sounds? Yes it is! Together, we can all, through spiritual empowerment, create such a way of life, but the fundamental rule for this is self-change. Most of us have wasted much of our precious time and energy checking up on others and the quality of people on a social level, not realizing that creating a just society would begin with a personal change that would work from within. This change would be contagious and spread through all of us, thus triggering a social transformation on a global level. So, let’s be the change.
(The author is a spiritual educator and popular columnist for publications across India, Nepal and the UK)