Living on the Edge

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Arshid Malik

Arshid Malik

What could be the greatest phenomenon that catapulted Homo Sapiens on a distinctive trip of growth and prosperity? The formation of the society, I would say. From semi-evolved human beings who were basically hunter-gatherers to the most evolved species on the planet Earth, humankind has progressed at a very fast pace. But, has the formation of the society which is basically an understructure of civilization, really benefitted mankind along with other life forms surviving on this planet? I believe the formation of society, which was a transition from Homo Sapiens being hunter gatherers living in herds to the advent of agriculture which changed the whole landscape for humans, led to the “bonding” of people into clans and societies. Humans were no longer dependent on hunting and gathering food. Agriculture brought in trade, which was quite unavoidable and trade evolving into commerce altered the ideals for the human race. As soon as people were able to attach value to commodities, a major shift occurred in terms of how mankind marched ahead on its agenda of prosperity and gradual evolution on a lateral plane. The stage was set for what I won’t hesitate from calling a disaster. It is utter commercialization that has swept the whole world today in the form of what we refer to as “New World Order”. It is debatable as to whether this fast tempo of progress, prosperity and eventual metamorphosis of value systems would have a good bearing on what is to become of all of us – humans, animals and all other life forms – or are we in for an uninvited calamity?

In terms of science, I understand that the process of evolution took off on a horizontal plane where the only evolution witnessed, arguably, was that of humans. Humans evolved their mechanisms and systems of operation and thereof invented trade and eventually trade was to become the only system that would have a definite and everlasting impression on us. Today, it is the share markets that shape the contours of our ever-evolving history. But, the question that beseeches attention is that whether people in general have benefitted along the course of recent human history which is dotted by huge leaps of mechanization and technology. I would say no. The common people all across the world have been deeply hurt and anguished by the debatable progress of a particular section of human population which happens to be the “affluent class”. Society has evolved in such a manner that common people stand thwarted. The population in general has been brainwashed and sensitized in such a manner that what is seemingly wrong to the naked eye is attributed as the only right there could be. Society in itself is a structure which segregates populations and contains common behavior. Society utilizes all kinds of tools, physical as well as psychological, to motivate populations to believe that what is happening around them, all that is wrong, is the only good that they have access to. And in doing so, it creates imbalances which are perfectly opposed to the natural course of growth and prosperity. When I say society, I am referring to a colossus of ideations and patterns that so exist at the behest of political, economic and regional phenomenon which all the time are at work attempting to contain the individual from becoming rebel. These constructs keep the population in general under massive control, which actually is subjugation at a much evolved level. The society creates local notions that are actually crafted by the super-elite for the “thoughtful degeneration” of the common class to a level where they are nothing but “zombies” who suffer from terrible post-conditioning stress.

For an instance, take a look at all those flyovers that have lifted the whole socio-commercial specter to a level from which the only thing you can see are the tall buildings that house money minting projects. The roadside businesses have been rendered unreachable. All you do is climb these monstrous flyovers and land up in super-malls that reduce you to almost untraceable insects which thrive on a bogus culture that is glitzy and glamorous. You just tend to miss the life that thrives underneath these flyovers. We bypass whole cities and townships, while thinking we have made it big. The reality is that we have memorably forgotten to live our lives the way nature intended. We are living sequels that have actually not even been produced yet. There is a widespread disdain against your natural self which the society fills you up with all the time.

Society is the greatest evil that could ever have been structured. The hunter-gatherers were free and frolicsome and we, the super-evolved, are suppressed and contained. The very advent of civilization led to the creation of a subjugating alternate reality which we are living till this day. Let me ask you as to how you feel when you go to a hill station or reclusively climb a mountain? Don’t you feel energized and free? Don’t you just want to settle amidst the beauty of it all and forget all that you are “supposed” to think about? Don’t you feel as if you were home? Yes, all of us do when we dive in to caress nature and this is our real home. We belong to the mountains and forests. Nature intends us to live like that. But we don’t.

Can we afford to do that? Well, my comprehension tells me that it would never be possible for us to return to where we actually came from, for we stand conditioned to an extreme level and we are terribly dependent. Today, if there is a power breakdown for a couple of hours even in our Jammu and Kashmir, which is virtually riddled by cuts and curtailments, we panic. We panic to an extent that we go crazy. We need electricity 24×7 for all those gadgets that infest our lives and take up most of our routine time. We are definitely living on the edge, and nature knows how to set things straight.

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