Today if we look at any debate happening on a news channel or any editorial in a newspaper, it revolves around civil rights and civil society. Why so much discussion over this topic? To know the answer for this question, we need to first understand what civil society is all about. In simple words, a civilised society is based on the rule of law and natural justice, it is based on self-respect and the dignity of the human individual. Looking around, can we say whether the society we live in is civilised? Most of us would say NO. Because when there are so many cases of rape, murder, child-abuse, wife-bashing, dacoities, violence, etc., can we call it civilised? By cutting jungles, trees, expanding large cities, using knife and fork and sophisticated gadgets, does a society become civilised?
There is no doubt that today there is better sanitation, civic sense, discipline and etiquette but civility is a much higher thing. We may come across many people who can be called 'sensible', but they may lack moral sense, which is considered as the biggest reason for increasing arms race, environmental pollution and population growth. One may have his five senses functioning satisfactorily but if he does not have this sixth sense i.e. The moral sense or the sense of human responsibility, then without it, human beings would not be human; they would only be beings.
Hence, we have to understand that the real problem, underlying all problems, whether these be labelled as economic, social, political, communal or by whatever other name, is man. There is no problem outside of and apart from man; not man who observes Values but man who violates human values, who cares only for himself and who is after fulfilment of his own ambitions, irrespective of what happens to others. We should, therefore, realise that thorough observance of Values was, all through the millennia, essential for having peace, happiness and health, it has become million times more essential now when man's capacity to commit high crimes has increased unimaginably.
Let us, therefore, understand what a 'civilised society' really is and how much the value of Values is and let each one of us individually try to inculcate the values in us if we wish a better world to live in. Remember! There is no perfect vacuum in the world. So, if the values leave their place, vices will occupy it. We must, therefore, remember that all sufferings are due to the presence of vices and absence of moral, human, social and spiritual values.
The writer is a spiritual educator and columnist for publications across India, Nepal & the UK. He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org / www.brahmakumaris.com