We can rightly argue that the events like the one being organized by Sri Sri Ravishankar (or Mr. Ravishankar) are good for the overall health of the society – but when we see the grandiose scale of such events which are at best fleeting in effect in a society like India with millions of under-nourished, quality-illiterate poor people, we start questioning utillity and futility of such initiatives.
The world peace simply means nothing for them.
And it is my firm belief that that every religious person has the moral and social obligation to work until there is even a single person to be helped is left, something that means it is going to be a lifelong, endless endeavour.
So, if Mr. Ravishankar has spent around 30 crore or more in organizing this event that claims to bring the world on the fragile Yamuna riverbed for three days, he needs to do some soul-searching so as to find the rationale that has driven his decision.
An ordinary Indian needs hospitals, schools and basic civic amenities first and not big temples, monuments, parks and mega events like this World Culture Festival.
Yes, it may be argued, it is being argued, and it will be argued that the Art of Living Foundation, the religious organization of Mr. Ravishankar, runs many schools and hospitals but to claim the ‘spirituality’ tag needs going much beyond it – like shunning the luxury of these mega events until there is no needy left – and to invest the scare resources in creating resources to help them.
In 30 crore or so, many clinics or hospitals or schools could be started in our rural areas or in our hinterlands.
Yes, the way the event has been lined up – with musical and cultural performances from across the world, it would certainly be a breathtaking view – but for the very same reason, it leaves valid questions for a spiritual-religious person, that Mr. Ravishankar claims to be, to introspect.
A poignant conversation from the movie Schindler’s List, that was based on a true story, captures the essence of such an introspection:
Oskar Schindler: This car. Goeth would have bought this car. Why did I keep the car? Ten people right there. Ten people. Ten more people.
Oskar Schindler: This pin. Two people. This is gold. Two more people. He would have given me two for it, at least one. One more person. A person, Stern. For this.
Oskar Schindler: I could have gotten one more person… and I didn’t! And I… I didn’t!
©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey – https://santoshchaubey.wordpress.com/