There is a very clear lesson of history that those civilisations which developed a purely materialistic philosophy and attitude by neglecting spiritual and moral values ultimately worked for their own downfall or death through violence, selfishness, competition and conflict. Our present society seems to be following that suicidal course. It is time that we have our educational system, our media, and all our professions based on values of love, peace, co-operation, non-violence and concern for the well-being of all. Otherwise, our ultra-materialistic ways and our lifestyle and professions which are based on mere consumerism and commercialism will land us into a tragic situation from which it will be difficult to extricate ourselves.
In Sanskrit sacred texts, one of the special signs of a better society, or the society as it was in the Golden Age is summed up in beautiful words. It says that people in the Golden Age and Silver Age said to each other: "Yours is yours; mine also is yours." In the Copper Age, they said: "Yours is yours; mine is mine. You must not touch mine nor will I grab thine: this is justice and fair play." In the Iron Age, which is the present age, they say: "Mine is mine, yours also is mine." Now, this is the culture, the philosophy, the tendency we have. So, if we wish to have a better society, we have to change and we have to learn to share with others.
There is always hope and some scope to learn and to change. Change, in fact, is the most unchangeable law of nature. Even what are called 'constants' in physics are not all 'constants'. Even they have undergone change in the course of time. Needless to say that there has to be a change in our outlook, attitudes, and belief systems also. There seems to be dialectic in history and one civilisation has given place to another according to that process of history.
But, if we change in time and change by self-effort, then only we are entitled to be called 'human beings'. Remember after the darkest hour of the night, the day proceeds towards dawn. There is utter darkness now, so let us march towards the dawn of a better world by adopting the core values of Humility, Service, Humanity, Tolerance, Patience, Love, Non-violence, Co-operation, and Spirit of sharing and Peace.