Monday, 25 July 2016

What can we learn from Men who lived 2500 Years ago?

Living in cities can be a harrowing experience sometimes. A cursory look will expose potholes, overflowing sewages, bumping roads, narrow streets, and haphazard housing layouts. Is this the “modernization” we harp around? To crown it all, town planning is its worse in metropolitan cities of India.

Mumbai and Delhi despite election promises and drills conducted by Town planning authorities, the unsaid and foreseeable happens. Unplanned and illegal colonies are regulated as further contributes to arbitrary housing arrangements.

Rewind to 2500 years back along the Indo-Pakistan border or along the banks of mighty Indus. Yes, you guessed it right. Welcome to  one of the most sophisticated and architecturally advanced ancient civilizations discovered till date! The Indus Valley Civilization (IVC). Intricate town planning, ‘modern’ house designs with courtyards and many floors, granaries, dockyards and traces of the use of hydraulic engineering all thousands of years back.

It does not take me a while to guess that which of the cases is ‘modern’. What about you? And what’s more, almost all houses in IVC had a relatively similar structure. Can we claim the same here in our times? Wikipedia says that no palaces or big temples have been discovered yet.

Sometimes I wonder how this ‘development’ hoax is being manufactured. These men 2500 years back were apparently more egalitarian than us and gave equal facilities to everyone. A ‘Great Bath’ maybe served the purpose of a public bath. Now, we will have so many qualms with our sexist and classist stereotypes. Have a look at one of these premium pools sometime and you’ll get the idea.

Socially and economically we have regressed. Barriers of gender, religion, class, race have divided the human race to the point of fatal conflicts. A glance at the newspaper debunks this ‘progressive’ theory. The ancients did not have ‘modern science’ or ‘liberating education’, yet what did they achieve?

Pre-Vedic period boasts of democratic republics and when the institutions of caste, marriage and class had not seeped in. It is not to say that this time was pure “bliss”, of course, it too had its maladies of a slowly rigidifying order that was tightening its grip stealthily.

Our cities have instilled “fear” in us. We are constantly insecure whether socially, economically or emotionally. We have build walls of insecurities and stress that are a gift of from the values of our ‘modern’ civilization. Not to suggest that the ancients were living perfectly. Before the birth of organized religion and agriculturally settled communities, people lived relatively free of social prejudices and made the best of their lives.

Our civilization decided to “master” nature, establish an “equal” order; “modernize” every aspect of man’s life; but to what? To destroy every last shred of humanity and killing earth with his bare hands? At least men who lived 2500 years ago did not control but mastered the world in their ways.

Written by Rishya Dharmani
"Life is not a mystery, as they say, rather it is simplicity itself. Unlearn, fail and realize the true joy."

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