Modern system of education which is famous for evidence based knowledge promises bright futures. Today, modern science has captured the minds of the common masses. Hand held gadgets such as i-pods, mp3 players etc have captured the imagination of people. If you take it to scale, space age technology gadgets that only fits sci-fi movies such as the CERN particle accelerator has promised a innovative future with myriad opportunities. Our lives at the microlevel have changed dramatically since the creation of “internet” in the past two decades. No doubt scientific advancement and innovations have reached people at every nook and cranny of our world. We can all sit back and pat ourselves in the back hailing our technological advancements ushering us swiftly into the 21st century.
Still, I say, modern science is but a pin-prick to our modern day lives. It has created, as Srila Prabhupada put it, unnecessary necessities. One of the biggest fallout of modern scientific knowledge is the span of inequality it has created among the global population. Sure…if I have enough money in the bank living a Rolls Royce life, then, modern science and its innovations are a plus. However, the story is different for an individual (worse if he is married and with children) who is barely making ends meet traveling two or three times the distance just to get to the job site. The inequality we face today is the biggest ever in the history of modern man. The rich are getting richer and the poor are getting poorer. According to the 2005 World Bank statistics, approximately 80% of the world population are earning below $10 per day that is 5.15 billion people we are talking. In other words, only 1.3 billion people earn above the poverty index while 80% are below. One may ask why I blame modern science for such inequalities?
Well…today local and central/federal governments pass policies and resolutions based on research done by scientists, sociologists and economists. The federal budget and the economy are run based on “research” based and “evidence” based studies. People invest money based on the national flow of currency which in turn is based on industrial sector growth which in turn is influenced by governmental policies created by a few elite people. The industrial growth machines are run by brains trained in modern day educational system in the fields of physical, social and behavioral sciences. Therefore, modern science not only is responsible for the “cool” gadgets it spits out but also responsible for the economical and social reforms that by and large impact the poor people. It seems, these intellectual reforms have had little effect on the global population, thus in my analysis, modern day economical and social reforms which is based on modern scientific methods of enquiry has only caused more inequalities among the people at large. I have not even touched upon the negative impact of modern technology on our environment.
On the whole, while modern science and its technological advancements is portrayed as a boon to society, analyzing this holistically, we see there are huge gaping holes in the areas of social and economic inequalities and environmental damage, both of which is causing and will cause irreversible damage that we will have to pay the price dearly.
The only solution is to put the brakes on technological advancements and seriously try to solve the social, economical and environmental inequalities as one big global human community. Stop exploiting people, animals and plant resources in the name of “scientific advancement” and bring back a balanced ecosystem to our planet. It is time we break our regional and national barriers and unite under one banner as the residents of planet earth. I don’t just mean human beings but all living beings created by God should be given the right to live.
All this is possible only if we have one global reason to unite. Srila Prabhupada called that reason Realize God in Truth (beyond sentimental and ritualistic ceremonies)- to put God in a real way in the center of our lives.
For all this to happen, every single individual should be sincerely motivated to understand who is God and what is my relationship with God. With a sincere yearning to know God beyond sectarian boundaries, every individual should put that God in the center of his or her lives. Only this can solve our current problems. As Gandhi famoulsy quoted "Be the Change you want to see in the world". Seek and you shall find Him. Seek that one Supreme Lord of our hearts, and He will reveal Himself to you.