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Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Young America

The United States is a developed country in comparison to other countries of the world. The US sets the pace with which people of other countries emulate. This is true in science, culture, and lifestyle. I guess some people would question this assumption especially with the economic downturn. However, by and large US is still the leader in many fields and people of the world look up to it.

However, culturally there are many things that needs to be addressed. People of the West and especially US, girls and boys mingle very easily and freely. Unlike say India where it is still a stigma to mingle freely at least in smaller towns. The bigger metro cities of India are following the Western culture in terms of male-female intimacy.

In the Vedic literatures, sex is defined as the singular act that binds the living being within the cycle of birth and death and in that sense can be considered the number one enemy when it comes to ultimate freedom. Although sex is very enchanting and stimulating in the beginning, actually, great seers of truth have concluded that it has the opposite effect - it is supremely binding and burdensome to the free spirit soul. With that as the criterion if we estimate cultures of the world, Western culture, especially the US, is designed to allow young adults to freely mingle to the point of physical intimacy. This sort of culture happens right when a boy or girl hits puberty.

Children in schools in the US due to peer pressure are forced into thinking sex is the coolest thing and therefore a must. Otherwise the young student is seen as an outcast. This I have heard anecdotally from my local friend. So parents who are raising young children, please beware of this open sexual relatonships children have at a very young age. This situation can be more difficult for parents who come from other more conservative cultures (like India for example) who are raising children in the US. Unfortunately, the US Government and parents promote early mingling and emphasize safer sex as opposed to no sex. Abstinence is a thing of the past and is considered less intelligent now days.

From a spiritual perspective, such mingling of male and female at a very young age leads to social, moral and ethical devaluation. Below are facts taken from a National Survey on teens and sexual behavior.
  • Fully 42% of young people age 12-19 agree with the statement: “It doesn’t matter whether you use birth control or not, when it is your time to get pregnant, it will happen.”
  • Even though most teens age 12-19 (86%) say they have all the information they need to avoid an unplanned pregnancy, 66% say they know “little or nothing” about male condoms and how to use them (including 36% of those age 15-19).
  • 55% of sexually experienced young people age 15-19 (including 67% of teen girls 15-19) say they wish they had waited longer before having sex.
  • 77% of teens age 12-19 who have seen MTV’s popular 16 and Pregnant and Teen Mom programs say the shows “help teens better understand the challenges of pregnancy and parenting.”
  • 74% of adults wish teens were getting more information about both abstinence and contraception rather than either/or.
  • Similarly, 65% of adults think federally funded programs designed to prevent teen pregnancy should emphasize messages encouraging teens to postpone sex and providing them with information about contraception.
source: National Campaign

If we study the answers deeply, we will ultimately find that none are trying to achieve abstinence from sex but rather preventing unwanted pregnancy. It is implied that sex at a young age is fine as long as it is safe. Such an environment prevails due to the lack of knowledge on the impact of sex on one's overall consciousness. It also has to do with the lack of spiritual and God centric values.

Currently sex is purely individualistic and whimsical. This erosion of values and knowledge has been going for many years and these results are simply a reflection of that erosion. It will only get worse especially if there is no awareness of the values of spiritual life. These young adults will become future leaders of society with their own families. What they believe and do now will set the stage for future generations.

The only way parents can prevent whimsical sex among young adults is to teach them core spiritual values. Children will adopt these values only if parents themselves do it! Unfortunately, parents especially residing in the US do not show much interest in a spiritual way of life thus paving way for children to act whimsically.

In conclusion, I would like to say Krishna consciousness teaches adults and young adults on proper values to life. By adopting such spiritual values the individual, family and society are benefited. Therefore Krishna consciousness is not a sectarian religious movement but rather a movement inspired to help people improve their quality of life and find lasting solutions.

Hare Krishna

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