Saturday, March 06, 2010

The vacuum within

The Swami Nithyananda scandal has ripped the society apart. On one side we have people who say that he has every right to sleep with women and on the other side there are people who say that having taken the vow of brahmacharyam or celibacy and exhorting his followers to do the same, he should not have cheated on their faith and belief in him.

I am not here to defend him or run him down. But I feel that religion has become big business now and mega bucks are for the taking if you know a few prayers; posses’ good oratory skills and tones of hypocrisy and know how to harvest people’s insecurities and weaknesses. Reminds me of catechism classes where we were told that God listens to us if we pray to him and if he doesn’t, then He thinks that is best for us. Absolutely no scope for further argument here. :p

Whichever the religion the “holy man” professes , what the people are forgetting is that holy men of yore were people who were acknowledged for their piety and saintliness after a long life led by practicing what they preached. Today those very men have become role models for crooks and con men out to make the mega bucks available for the taking. Whatever the garb, all have their private agendas. Some want to increase followers, some to increase their coffers.

With so many scandals coming to forth involving Swamiji’s and Godmen, one would think that people will think twice before they trust anyone. But the sad truth is, most people would rather listen and be led than think for themselves. This is a weakness that seems to grip our nation. We have this inherent need to pay obeisance to someone and be led like a herd. I do not know why we have this vacuum within us that makes us easy targets for people more than willing to offer us that feeling of being in control of “our” lives.

9 comments:

Puneet said...

"holy men of yore were people who were acknowledged for their piety and saintliness after a long life led by practicing what they preached. "

ROTFL. After seeing counter-examples every other day, why would you think the historical figures were saints?

Karthik Sivaramakrishnan said...

It is not a weakness unique to our nation or our people. It is a broader weakness of the human mind in general, that has created both god and godmen. (This statement of yours is correct globally: "But the sad truth is, most people would rather listen and be led than think for themselves.") For a more detailed understanding of godmen and gurus read 'Feet of Clay' by Anthony Storr. For a not-so-brief introduction to the book: http://s-kar.blogspot.com/2009/11/notes-from-feet-of-clay-by-anthony.html

scorpiogenius said...

lol, Godmen! Its the best way of making some serious bucks now. Millions of followers, cosy lifestyle, green channel in port of entries, social/political influence and almost untouchable heights, even for the law in most cases... No wonder it has become a rosebed for crooks and the bigots.

MC said...

religion is the basis of all divisions..and i believe it was founded only to divide the people and create power posts..using which certain people can wield authority and influence. if you look at most political parties also, you can see undercurrents of religious influences. and anything in the name of God is bound to create major emotions..because ultimately human beings (most) believe in His authority and fear Him. just random thoughts :)

anishthomas said...

Two years back it was Santhosh Madhavan(At least some of the movie makers and mimicry artists got 'benefited' by him).Now it is Nithyanandaji.The peoples like them will come always to exploit innocencent peoples.Sometimes 'by mistake' they will get caught.But unfortunatily people won't learn lesson from it.

I don't understand the concept of mediators to communicate with God.He is our father and creator.He is always there to listen to us and care for us.Only thing is we have to ask him what we need.Then why people wanna encourage these morons and give away there hard earned money to them.

@ why we have this vacuum within us that makes us easy targets---Most of the peoples are having some problems in there life.Unfortunatily they see these morons as the shortcut for there solutions.

P.S - want to share latest nithyanadhji joke here - "addresses people by day...undresses people by night #nithyananda" ....The internet is so brutal. :)

abhishek said...

"We have this inherent need to pay obeisance to someone and be led like a herd."

You hit the nail on the head. It leads to stampedes, mob violence and public apathy.

Have you heard about the Genovese incident? In 1964, Catherine Genovese was stabbed to death near her home as many people looked and listened on from their windows and did nothing.

Psychologists call it "diffusion of responsibility" or "bystander effect".

This is India's biggest handicap. The sheer numbers are numbing.

Annie said...

As the vices grow Godmen also grow. Some people find solace in vices & crimes offending others and the kith and kin affected find solace in Godmen. Sometimes it is z show to come in good books. Most of the people seeking solace in Godmen are doing it so because their conscience is betrayed either by themselves or by their near and dear and with that spirit it becomes a part of spirituality nurturing this necessary evil of demonstration of everything and everyone attached to it. It is happening not only in India but in entire world. Only difference is in the exposure of the crime. Sexual act is just an individual's behaviour attached crime, whereas the crimes like loot, murder etc. committed under same Godmenship are not exposed so much. So it depends on the subject of curiosity/fun that Godmen are accepted or condemned. Any village can survive without a Village Officer. But why are they there? Same way any religion can survive without a Godman, but why are they there?

Anonymous said...

Very well written post ! Not sure when people will learn.
Here is another scandal
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Kerala-priest-held-for-sexual-abuse-of-minor/articleshow/5649321.cms

Thomas

binoy said...

Well, I liked the last paragraph. So true. How we run around just to hear from someone else what we got to do with out life ... I guess its a cultural aspect.