The society, man and mass media are quite interlinked, interrelated and interdependent in such an inextricable manner that the effects of one on another are most visibly apparent. Though man is the best creation of God and His representative having most of His divine qualities and is born upon the terrestrial stage of this planet earth to play his apportioned roles or parts here, yet he has undergone unprecedented changes in his thoughts, attitudes, values, outlooks, behaviours, manners, etc. with the drastic changes of the society at present.
The State of Society and Man at Present
The state of society according to W. B. Yeats, the Irish poet, is: “Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;/Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,/The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere/The ceremony of innocence is drowned;/The best lack all conviction while the worst/Are full of passionate intensity.” The ignoble irony, in general, according to Martin Luther King, Jr., is: “Our scientific power has outrun our spiritual power. We have guided missiles and misguided men.”
The ignoble irony, in particular, is that the state of man has become so morally weak, devoid of values, spiritually bankrupt, emotionally depraved that he cannot rise or raise himself without God’s grace, brace and support. His life has become a wasteland; he is wandering here and there in the wilderness to find out God and avail His grace and support like a drowning man desperately trying to catch a flowing piece of straw in the river, thinking it as his support and vainly hoping that it will sail him across the river. Without finding God after wandering to many places of pilgrimage and meeting fake and swindling saints, sages and god-men, who blasphemously call them as “Shivoham”, he finally gives out Save Our Souls (SOS) calls to liberate and redeem him from pains and sufferings caused by his accumulated sins and vices.
In this wretched and miserable state of society and man, in general, mass media can come to play an enlightening and enlivening role for their holistic transformation and, especially, for the resurgence and rejuvenation of man from his present his present ignorant, slumberous and almost morbid state.
The State of Media Before
Media was, is and will remain as the fourth pillar of democracy; media persons it watch-dogs. Literature was, is and will remain the mirror of the society; and the mass media are most influential literature. Media persons reflect the society in all aspects in their true and transparent colours. Media have brought widespread revolution in the world; inspired the sense of nationalism and patriotism, of devotion, dedication and determination in people; brought freedom and independence of the country from the clutches of foreigners; have enabled the country people to hoist the fluttering flag of tri-colours in the country. The main roles of responsible and conscious media were to educate, enlighten, inform and entertain.
State of Media at Present
But, the greatest irony is that mass media or multimedia including print, electronic and social media at present have gone astray and trodden away from the values-led track; and, now, have become devoid of values by reflecting the darker of human life and society such as gossips, rumours, sensuality, sensationalism, ultra-fashions, glamours, x-rated films, nudity, violence, ,etc. that have led our youths, people to a hellish state of existence in an animalistic manners, thereby confining life to “birth, copulation and death” in the words of modern English poet, T. S. Eliot, who also questions the miserable state of modern man’s materialistic and values-less existence in the following lines:
Where is life we have lost in living?
Where is wisdom we have lost in knowledge?
Where is the knowledge we have lost in information?
The cycle of twentieth century brings us farther from God
And nearer to the dust.”
At present, media become irresponsible and quite commercial; its roles now have been merely inform and entertain as the prime roles educating and enlightening people and society have been completely forgotten or relegated to the background. As a result, our youths are more exposed to these negative and immoral aspects, which are eating away the moral essence, human, social, political and spiritual in their consciousness (souls or spirits), as a result of which malevolent incidents of rapes, abductions, molestations, crimes, scams, corruptions, exploitations, cheating, killings, murders, black marketing, hoardings, etc. are increasing in geometrical progressions.
The Most Urgent Reform: Media should be Value-Centric
Reform in media will help in reforming people, society and the world at large, which requires that media should be value-centric. The only, unique and easiest method of making media value-centric is the inculcation of values, spirituality and practice of Rajayoga meditation by media persons.
‘Value(s)’ refer to those standards of principles, ideas, self-imposed rules (whether moral, spiritual, ethical, etc.) which we maintain in life or which we adopt to live our lives righteously and successfully, and which we stick to with a clear conscience without any fear of outside threat or influence. Values also refer to objects, experiences and achievements that we consider desirable and valuable for our existence and evolution; for liberation from evil and suffering, and evolution of our inner and outer environment leading to eternal joy and bliss.
Values are the noble aspirations of religions, cultures and philosophies, and espoused and respected. Values alert our moral conscience to remain free from temptations and give strength to resist human weaknesses and guide us for better, happy, comfortable, peaceful and sociable existence in the world. Values are the beauty, grace and treasures of life, and determine our moral and ethical choices in life. Values give indication of character because the nature and quality of human beings are determined much more by values held rather than by the amount of information one has gathered and mastered.
The term ‘spirituality’ refers to knowledge, understanding and realization of the spirit/soul/self and God, the Supreme Soul, and their attributes. The term ‘values’ refer to such human, social, moral, ethical qualities, principles and ideals, which we need to espouse and inculcate in our practical life for a peaceful, harmonious and happy living.
In present day scenario of the modern, values-free, materialistic society and world, spirituality and the cardinal values like peace and harmony are quite rampantly and apparently lacking in the body-conscious human beings including media persons and also in their personal, social and professional lives due to their prevailing utmost ignorance of the knowledge of ‘spirit’ or ‘consciousness’. T. S. Eliot, the famous modern English poet, has very rightly stated that the modern world has turned to be a veritable wasteland spiritually. So, he reflects the grave ironies of modern life of people by questioning: “Where is the life we have lost in living? Where is the wisdom we have lost in knowledge? Where is the knowledge we have lost in information? The cycle of heaven in twenty centuries, bring us farther from God and nearer to dust.” He stated that human life has, now, been simply confined to “birth, copulation and death”.
Pierre Teilhard De Chardin has rightly said, “We are not human beings having a spiritual experience. We are spiritual beings having a human experience.” We have forgotten our original, essential and fundamental values and spirituality, which identifies us with the ‘inner spirit’ but not with the outer body, a lump of five natural elements. Lack of spirituality and values has twisted our real worldview and, as a result, has turned the media and media persons to focus on negative journalism and to highlight the trivial issues like fad, fashion and glamour; cinema and celebrity; gossip and blame game; hype and sensationalism; sensuality, vulgarity, immorality, obscenity, etc. which lead our youth and people on the wrong track to heinous hell of pains, sorrows and sufferings.
Values, Spirituality and Rajayoga Meditation are Interlinked and Interdependent
When spirituality is developed, values emerge; when values are developed, spirituality increases. God is the only and ultimate supreme source of spirituality, of all values, divine virtues, qualities and powers. Rajayoga meditation practice, which links the human soul with the Incorporeal God, is the only method or process of enabling the human beings for inculcating spirituality and values in life because it is inextricably interlinked with them and makes their inculcation easy and possible. This will develop in media persons a keen sense of observation, understanding, judgement, journalistic acumen and inner conscience for effective working.
Media persons are basically human souls, who need to first inculcate spirituality and values in their life; because the spiritual-and-values-based patterns of their thinking, attitude, visions, views, outlooks, character and conduct can positively influence people’s consciousness, perceptions, outlooks, visions, psyche, choices, behaviours and lifestyles. Self-transformation leads to world-transformation. There is not an iota of doubt that self-transformation of media persons through practice of Rajayoga meditation, inculcation of spirituality and values, self-empowerment through self-introspection, self-analysis, self-regulation and self-realization will go a long way in bringing about the ultimate and eventual world-transformation. Because as media is the fourth pillar of democracy, media persons are the integral and most influential parts of the society, and their pen is said to be mightier than the sword; they can certainly wield enormous positive and effective impact for ameliorative change in people’s personal, social, professional, economic, moral, ethical, spiritual, political spheres of life.
Therefore, the urgent need of the society is inculcation of spirituality, which, in turn, will instil the values of peace and harmony along with other values in the human souls. And the instant call of the time for the media persons and their community is to play their unique and significant role in developing and promoting spirituality and establishing values through their various journalistic works of print, electronic and social media such as publications, programme productions, dissemination of news and knowledge with a view to usher in a values-based society and world of peaceful and harmonious co-existence in our diverse multi-religious, multi-linguistic, multi-ethnic and multi-cultural set-up of the current divisive and disharmonious existence.
Personal Enlightenment Leads to Global Enlightenment
But, mere attempt and will of God is not enough without man’s own voluntary personal attempt and will. The transformation and transition of man to god/deity can be successful only with personal his personal, individual enlightenment leading to the ultimate global enlightenment in a large scale through self-transformation and world transformation. Enlightenment refers to dispersing of the darkness of ignorance of body-consciousness and opening of the third eye of man” through spiritual knowledge leading to ‘awakening of spiritual consciousness’ and his ‘self-realization’. Self-realization of man leading to God-realization through daily, regular Rajayoga practice is the only effective method of making self-transformation and world transformation. Rajayoga meditation is the process of mental, intellectual and spiritual connection or union of the human soul with God, the Supreme Soul, the Supreme Spiritual Father of all human souls of the humanity.
Once, the human soul (being) was the divine child of Immortality and enlightened denizen/citizen of heaven. Though he is now suffering from the mortal pains and pangs in the present Iron Age, yet he is destined to move to the Golden Age of Heaven, which is, in other words, called the Kingdom of God, Paradise, Elysium, Shivalaya. In Golden Age, man will be a god/deity of an ideal mould and embodiment of the characteristics of divine values of peace, purity, prosperity, health, wealth and happiness. William Shakespeare, the most world famous English poet and dramatist, has rightly wondered about God’s craftsmanship of making man in His own image: “What a piece of work is man! How noble in reason! How infinite in faculty! …….The paragon of all animals!”
Brahma Kumaris are the Embodiment of Values and Spirituality
Brahma Kumaris are the Embodiment of Values and Spirituality in the sense that they are spiritualizing the individual souls by explaining them that they are originally and essentially the immortal souls/spirits who take the mortal bodies with various organs to play their roles on the earthly stage; as souls we are the spiritual children of One and same God Father. They are trying to transform the human into divine by instilling in them divine virtues and thereby also trying to divinize the society and the world in very near future. They are creating integration in various faiths, through interfaith dialogue by inviting leaders and people of different faiths to a common platform for establishing mutual love, trust, cooperation, reciprocity through understanding of similarities and acceptance of the various diversities as parts of the integrated whole. They are emphasizing that spiritual education is the root and foundation of all other kinds of education without which humanity is still crying for peace, love, unity, understanding, etc. in spite of the material prosperity and scientific and technological advancement.
Many Benefits of Value-Centric Media
(i). The personal, familial and professional lives of media persons will be values-based and values-oriented.
(ii). Their attitude, outlook, angle of vision and worldview will undergo a drastic sea-change from body-consciousness to soul-conscious, negative to positive, destructive to constructive.
(iii). With inculcation of values, acquisition of spiritual knowledge of soul and Supreme Soul, the Supreme Spiritual Father of all souls of the humanity, they will develop in them a spirit and principle of Universal Brotherhood of Man and Fatherhood of Incorporeal God Father Shiva, and be inspired and ready to work and contribute greatly for establishing a One-World-Family (Vasudhaiv Kutumbakam).
(iv). They will be able to see and visualize all things, beings and Nature through a moral and spiritual vision.
(v). They will view, analyze, interpret and report news about things and beings in their true perspectives and colours without distorting, twisting and sensationalizing them at all.
(vi). They will work according to the dictates and promptings of their reformed conscience and save and safeguard themselves from the outside impacts and influences, threats, evil motivations, vices and temptations such as lust, anger, greed (bribery, gifts, etc.), attachment and ego.
(vii). They will not feel jealousy of their colleagues and media houses/companies and will not participate blindly in the present, prevalent and widespread rat race or cut-throat competitions for satisfying the unholy and evil gains,; for glorifying their names fames by joining in the race increasing TRP rates in a hideous and unjust manners.
(viii). They will feel quite contented with their means of support and sustenance provided by governments or companies and will the hearts, of people and the most Benevolent God Father Shiva.
(ix). They will be the models of examples for people of other professions.
(x). As the most influential people of the society, they will be the true friends, philosophers and guides of the people and society.
– Dr. Brahma Kumar Yudhishthir,
Associate Editor, World Renewal