Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Man and Machine

Since time immemorial, the exotic creation has been satiating the human lives. Man collects all the materials from this huge world to fulfill his physical, psychological, intellectual and spiritual needs. To surface his ego in the visible world, man adopts various unique methods. Basing upon the terrestrial world, he builds a surrounding for his own requirements. From the very surrounding he gets a life full of luxury. He chooses for himself a life surrounded by various matters, an artificial machine-run, synthetic life which is beyond the cognition of any other species of this world. Despite of the marvelous intellect, artistry, skill and constant endeavoring for enjoying a life adorned by a status of superiority, man has never conquered the all pervasive time. Time flushes out all his creative skills along with his identity. This makes us feel that all the actions pertaining to the material world is comparable with continued waving of the sea. It makes feel as if the definition of the action oriented human life is defined by any invisible superpower! Highly uncertain visible world and all the actions relying upon it can nothing be but the outer layer of a very delightful truth. Directly or indirectly that invisible power attracts the forces of life towards a path of eternal evolution. Since any remote unknown past the waves of life have been running towards some unknown destination just like a river being attracted by the sea runs breaking through all the obstacles coming its way.

                                                                                  image courtesy-Man and machine                                                           

Man searches all the happiness from the material world being nescient about the possible pervasiveness and openness of soul beneath the eternity of time. Machine becomes a medium for him to skim off happiness from the mundane world. Machine has made life easy and comfortable. Man is now able to do the very task in few hours which earlier took him years together. What magnificence machine does bring! Man can move from one part of the world to another in few hours sitting on an aeroplane; click of a switch makes his food ready to serve; his dresses ready to wear; he gets the news and entertainment of world over just by sitting and relaxing in his living room; he always manages to get an air-conditioned environment for himself while at home, workplace or while travelling. Likewise most of the human actions get replaced by machines. But in the process of enslaving the machines man in his ignorance slowly begins to accept the supremacy of machines. It seems as if the machines steal the nature gifted physical efficiency of man ! Slowly he develops a sense of incredulity on his physical and mental power; and slowly machine occupies his heart, mind and body. Life appears to be unmanageable, dormant and miserable without even the thought of machine. Man relies more on machines than himself or any other human being. If there is a power failure or machinery failure, he becomes highly disturbed or stressed. Just think, how modern man is dependant upon computers! With the passage of time, man is inventing more and more advanced computers and robots to match his high ambitions. In the name of self-reliance in security, he goes accumulating the machines of destruction in the form of weapons of warfare. In the English scientific fiction movies like “Terminator” and “Matrix” it has been presented that, after getting human intellect and self-awareness, robots try to erase the identity of human and an indispensable war occurs among men and robots. At last, man destroys all his intelligent creations in order to get rid of those. Sometimes these fictions seem as the truth of coming future. By the help of science man is creating more harm than welfare for himself, this fact can never be denied.

In the past man was staying very close to nature. Like a simple, disciplined and obedient child, man was giving respect to mother nature. The  moon, sun, stars, mountains, forests, streams, all the flora and fauna were appearing to him as the presence of almighty God.  He was getting pure soul filling bliss from the nature. The very nature now has become just an instrument of repletion of his lustful demands. He goes on slashing woods, destroying forests and killing wild animals for making settlements, for farming or for building deluxe edifices. He goes on  demolishing hills to get minerals; he flushes away the industrial waste to rivers and seas, toxic gases to air thereby making the environment highly polluted and never he repents on his evil deeds. Since every action has an equal and opposite reaction, all the losses that man brings forth to the nature, boomerangs back to him in the form of  flood, gale, famine, diseases and other natural calamities. Then the machines are only used to collect and to ensconce the corpses.

It seems as if the delicate luxurious goods and machines created by the help of science is devoted to the service of the few privileged groups of people in the society, because it widens the gap between rich and poor more and more. While the richer section of the people remaining in sheer abundance and luxury maintain a life of opulence, the poorer section of the society fight with life every moment, poverty-stricken. It reminds of an English movie titled “Metropolis” in which it is presented that the affluent sections of the society live in an artificial heaven where all the basic as well as subaltern amenities of life are available whereas the hapless have-not’s live under the city in ample darkness and hopelessness. They toil incessantly like animals for proper maintenance and running of the machines which would provide luxuries to the people living in the heaven. 

The use of the machines which closes the door to utilize the mental and physical power of humans was highly opposed by Mahatma Gandhi. Although that belief may appear to be outdated and unusual in the contemporary life, there is no better pedagogy and alternative than this belief to save the endangered future of man. There is absolutely no limit to the raging desires pertaining to human ambitions. Man always sees forward. Looking back is none of his interests. The life of his ancestors appear to him as backward and impracticable. There arises a conflict; a conflict between new thoughts and old thoughts; a conflict between modesty and impulsion, a conflict between spiritual and material way of life, a conflict between normative and pragmatic ways of handling problems.

In a weak phase of material life being frustrated and depressed, man certainly falls on a real mental conflict within. He begins opposing his own decisions, he questions his own ambitions and aspirations; he analyses history and instead of valuing his thoughts with ego he values those with his conscience. At that time he desires strongly to go back to the domain of pure beauteous nature where he becomes the true follower of bliss. He tries to remove the gap between faith and truth. Then only an unification occurs between spiritual and material way of existence. The spiritual disciplines give material life its proper shape. Then only the aim of using machines in material world becomes creation, maintenance, saving lives and peace instead of lust, jealousy, violence and destruction. A disciplined material life tries to make human realize his relation with nature in a more focused manner.

With the evolution of human civilization, intellect and knowledge is also persistently increasing. That knowledge must sway away human towards a path of realization. Instead of destructing and devastating the nature man would be devoted to protect and nourish it. The blissful truth lying beneath the dynamic mundane life would be part of every body’s life. In the massive paws of time, man and his noble deeds would never be wiped out. Rather it would lead life towards an eternal path like brisk dazzling sun rays.

This article was published in Ama Odisha e- magazine-5th editon as editorial.