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Why the EU matters

Is there life for capitalists after the present, ill-fated EU? Of course there is, if they choose to abide by harmonious humanity and not rampant individualism. PROUT points to a true European and global socio-economic renaissance of welfare and progress for all.

​Photo: From an anti-EU rally in Athens, Greece.

By Trond Øverland

The European Union (EU) matters because Europe is where democracy took root. Europe is also the place where a great deal of modern political thought emerged. It is the continent of the Enlightenment, industrial revolution, and the economic system of capitalism.

Consequently, to most people today the EU is a powerful politico-economic structure stemming from the cream of the time-honoured European political think-tank hailing back to ancient Greece. Certainly the EU has great symbolic value to the entire world. Should its structure break down, its collapse will echo everywhere.

Normally, people of a society feel strongly for their community, as it provides them with a sense of unity, common momentum, mutual support and agreement, cooperation, combined reserves against uncertainty, etc. This is also true for a system that is about to break. There, two belligerent sentiments emerge in conflict – one group holds on to status quo while another embraces a fresh vision of community based on values different from those of the current establishment.

Deep down the EU is based on crucial factors of capitalist industrialism. The four pillars on which the mighty EU structure rests are free flow of: capital, work force, goods, and services. This capitalist fundament has given both European and global capitalists a free hand in Europe and has turned the EU into a perfect vehicle for capitalism in politically sensitive Europe.

Here an important question arises: What sort of community does capitalism generate?

Essentially, capitalism is not about society, it is about individuals. Capitalism allows one individual to become rich at the expense of others, even to the extent of making millions paupers and debt slaves. It is therefore natural that the new vision growing out of resentment against scarcity and destitution is a rebirth of society, a renaissance of human culture.

At the economic level, such visionary collective sentiments may initially express themselves as protectionist attitudes and self-centred policies; in the form of localised approaches focusing largely on local people’s needs and resources. This is where the existing EU should have started, with a vision of the welfare of the entire locality.

Buildings have to be built from the bottom; it is not possible to build anything concrete from the top. But the masters of global capitalism, with their exclusive focus on spin-off economics in the global casino and total lack of interest in the real economy, certainly think otherwise. Therefore the present EU structure is about to crumble. In its stead the Europeans have to develop a new organization, this time from the bottom-up, and not from the imaginary sky of giddy capitalists.

Is there then life after the EU for capitalists? Can they exist and even thrive in a genuine bottom-up society? Of course they can, if they choose to abide by harmonious humanity and not rampant individualism. The capitalist tendency is a natural human trait, and like all other human traits it should exist in agreement with other human traits and not take precedence over all and sundry. Industrial dynamism and competent management of capital is a priceless, benevolent social resource. It should not however be given free rein so as to profit individuals exclusively but should exist for society as a whole and for all its individuals.

PROUT is the only theory today that points to a true European and global socio-economic renaissance of welfare and progress for all. Among PROUT’s principles that addresses this vision most conspicuously, we find the first fundamental principle of PROUT and the principle of socio-economic unity in diversity – the idea of numerous samajas functioning well together in ever-increasing economic, cultural and political synthesis.

Prout, a Guarantee Against Totalitarianism

Prout does not see individuals as economic — commercial, financial, etc. — equals. Neither does it view the collective as a goal in itself but generates a happy blending between individual and collective interests.

By Trond Øverland

Prout is a new socio-economic theory that takes into account the spiritual reality of our personal lives and the world we live in. Our essential potential, spirituality, is infinite, and this reality gets reflected in our ongoing psycho-spiritual development. For it to take firm shape in the mundane world, Prout states that our physical development and mundane dynamics should support our inner subtle individual and collective development, rather than favouring one out of hundred in the economic sphere leaving 99% behind in abject poverty and deprivation.

"Why physical restrictions but absolute freedom in psychic and spiritual spheres? The short answer is that physical life is restricted by nature."

As a socio-economic model Prout allows for continued progress of all individually and collectively. At the core of Prout's dynamics is maximum utilization and rational distribution of physical wealth, and unrestricted freedom in life's mental and spiritual spheres. 

Why restrictions in physical life and unrestricted liberty in the psychic and spiritual spheres? The short answer to this question is that physical life is restricted by nature. The mental and spiritual on the other hand are not bound by such limitations; there is an infinite supply of mental and spiritual realities. This circumstance has innumerable implications in social and economic life, and Prout is the first theory to address those.

The propounder of Prout, Shrii Prabhat Rainjan Sarkar, offered in 1959:

“In this socio-economic set-up humanity is at full liberty in the spiritual and mental spheres. This is possible because the spiritual and psychic entities for which people can aspire are themselves unlimited and the extent of possession in this sphere does not hamper the progress of others in their quests. But supply in the physical sphere is limited and hence any effort for disproportionate or unrestricted acquisition of physical objects has every possibility of creating a vast majority of have nots, thus hampering the spiritual, mental and physical growth of the larger majority. So while dealing with the problem of liberty in physical sphere, it must not be allowed to cross a limit where it is instrumental in hampering the development of the complete personality of humanity – and at the same time must not be so drastically curtailed that the spiritual, mental and physical growth of human beings is hampered. 1

Again he said in 1960:

"Every individual possesses two invaluable and extraordinary potentialities: psychic and spiritual. The collective body cannot issue dictates concerning these two potentialities – its jurisdiction is limited to physical wealth only. In the physical sphere if individuals do not violate the interests of the collective body, both society and the individual will avoid difficulties and enjoy a state of well-being. For this reason the individual right to go against the interests of the collective has been withdrawn. But in the psychic and spiritual spheres, every individual has complete freedom to advance and progress. 2

Two practical examples

Human longings are infinite and never stop expressing themselves. If these longings are not permitted to be expressed in subtler and still subtler ways they will express themselves in cruder and still cruder ways. This is what takes place in cases of suppression, repression and oppression.

"Politically speaking, such an approach would open a number of very large cans of worms — morally, ethically, socially, culturally, pedagogically, etc."

For instance, any attempt at suppressing the curiosity and playful energy of young students who express a desire to know more about explosives will not be constructive. Such an approach would, politically speaking open numerous very large cans of worms — morally, ethically, socially, culturally, pedagogically, and others. Sharp questions would be asked, such as:

  • What type of mental and spiritual wealth should various people, or all of us, not have access to, and who would be trusted with taking such decisions?
  • Do we want to live in a society where it is taken as granted that someone else control our minds by limiting our access to mental and spiritual spheres?
  • Who can guarantee that limited access to mental and spiritual wealth in the end will not produce a fascist society where somebody at the top controls what and what not the majority have access to on a permanent basis?

Instead of limiting those young students, it would be pertinent on part of their teachers to channelize the pupils' youthful energy and expand and enhance their inquisitive consciousness to include broader, deeper and higher values, such as considering the damaging effect of explosives; whether they would have proper control over practical experiments; whether they would be in danger of harming themselves or any other sentient living being or part of the creation; compassion for all; the proper place of explosives in science and productive enterprise; etc.

Beyond this tableu, civilization dictates that there are very many possible things one ought not to present or propagate to anyone. Human imagination and analytical capacity is a double-edged sword and it is better to learn how to use it right early in life. This does not mean that one should bar people from participating in subtler wealth. It means that one should choose one's subjects wisely and first and foremost share what is actually useful and really progressive.

By educating students properly teachers would not be called upon to enforce any principle of limiting access to subtler wealth. Instead they need to make the students realise the grandeur of more expanded subtler wealth.

Take another and perhaps subtler example: All are not fit to be immediately initiated into higher forms of meditation. The reason for it is that a sudden onset or burst of much inner subtle energy may be harmful for the unprepared nervous system, the person's ordinary and relatively limited consciousness, etc. If an eager student first of all wants to learn the most advanced lessons of meditation, and even expresses reluctance to practice basic stuff first, then it would be the duty of the seasoned teacher to check whether this person is really interested in developing him/herself in the true sense of the term, or just want to achieve something less savoury or even something that could harm him/her in the long run. Not only should novices first of all have a rudimentary understanding of the need to live a moral life and the underlying meaning of basic ethics. Their bodies and minds also need to be prepared for the influx of higher energies. In some cases such preparation may be completed within a relatively short time, whereas others may require years of basic meditation and focussing on regular daily practices, lifestyle, simplicity of being, lofty thinking, spiritual outlook, etc., before being imparted more advanced teachings.

Again, such a situation does not pose the question of barring people from higher meditation but of preparing them for it by continuously aiding them in expanding their subtler potentialities and abilities. In a word, this is about synthetical outlook, as opposed to a mostly analytical approach to life's challenges and mysteries.

This synthetical approach derives from and abides by PROUT’s principles of maximum utilization (3rd fundamental principle), proper adjustment (4th principle), as well as “the method of utilization should vary in accordance with changes in … person, and the utilisation should be of a progressive nature” (5th principle). Guiding people properly along the path of all-round development has nothing to do with limiting their access to subtler wealth but preparing them properly and making their entry into it wider and more open by the minute.

Freeing ourselves of limiting factors

By opening up the psychic and spiritual spheres to all, dogmas will lose their foothold in various areas of human society. With their limiting constrictions dogmas bind humanity in numerous systems of disparity, such as casteism and other systems of social stratification, economic classes, racism, etc. These limitations on humanity are squarely analytical by nature. They separate one from another and leave them divided to an ever-increasing degree. Prout is fundamentally opposed to dogmas and by nature eliminates them by way of synthesizing humanity in ever-increasing mental and spiritual freedom.

"Prout does not view the collective as a goal in itself. It also does not favour particular individuals or market forces. Instead, Prout is a happy blending between individual and collective interests."

Prout does not favour individuals or the collective at the cost of the other. It does not see individuals as economic — commercial, financial, etc. — equals. Neither does it view the collective as a goal in itself. Instead, in the physical sphere Prout generates a happy blending between individual and collective interests. It allows for extraordinarily productive and smart individuals to make their way and earn more, while seeing to it that no one lags behind in any sphere.

In order to realize such individual and collective happiness and flow, accumulation of physical wealth needs to be well regulated. There should be ceilings on salaries, bank balances, market shares, etc. Otherwise, the accumulation and riches of certain individuals become the misfortune of many others. This is one of the reasons why Prout favours cooperatives as the ideal mode of human industrial and productive activities.

In the mental and spiritual spheres, Prout goes for a free-for- all. Unrestricted mental and spiritual freedom will empower the cooperative and other sectors of the Prout economy with the subtle force of neo-humanist cooperation and coordination. Because of this tremendous force the outcome and advancement of Prout will far surpass that of one-sided competitive capitalism.

Prout deems that individual and collective movement towards spiritual realization is real progress. Because even psychic resources — although in infinite supply — are relative in scope, just as physical resources are. Only spiritual essence is infinite and absolute in scope, and therefore only spirituality is able to fulfil the infinite thirst and longing of human beings.

Hence, Sarkar announced that the Progressive Utilization Theory is "for the good and happiness of all." 

It should be noted that full freedom in the subtler spheres of life is the only way to realise Prout's leadership ideals, the rule of sadvipras; of the morally and spiritually enlightened. Any attempt to limit people's freedom in the subtler spheres would tend towards the totalitarian, in the same way as capitalism's call for unlimited physical freedom in the end would produce its own variety of dictatorship and even fascism.

Prout, by establishing a firm neo-humanist leadership that guarantees fair regulation in the physical world and full mental and spiritual freedom, is the only guarantee against such totalitarianism.

"Society will have to encourage the individual search for absolute freedom because the psychic and spiritual realms are unlimited, and possession in these spheres does not hinder the progress of others. But unrestricted freedom to acquire wealth in the physical sphere has every possibility of permitting a few people to roll in luxury while hampering the all-round growth of the majority, because physical resources are limited. Individual liberty in the physical sphere must not be allowed to hamper the development of the complete human personality, and at the same time it must not be so drastically curtailed that the all-round growth of society is impeded." 4
– Shrii Prabhat Rainjan Sarkar, 1979

Sources

1 "The Cosmic Brotherhood", Shrii Prabhat Rainjan Sarkar, Idea and Ideology, Ananda Marga Publications.

2 "Social Defects in Gandhism", Shrii Prabhat Rainjan Sarkar, PROUT in a Nutshell Part 5, Ananda Marga Publications.

3 Ananda Sutram 5:17, Shrii Shrii Anandamurti. Ananda Marga Publications, 1962. 

4 "Socio-Economic Groupifications", Shrii Prabhat Rainjan Sarkar, A Few Problems Solved Part 9. Also published in Prout in a Nutshell Part 13, and in Proutist Economics. All by Ananda Marga Publications.

Morality and Social Progress

Republished with permission of ProutWomen.org

We believe that transforming ourselves and becoming examples of our ideals are an integral part of the task of transforming our planet. We seek to return the concept of morality to its proper place as a guide for truly benevolent and uplifting behavior. We believe that there is a widespread desire for ethical standards in social life and a special yearning for moral leadership.

At the present time many political and religious leaders are attempting to channel this desire into narrow and dogmatic ideas of morality. Our moral guidelines seek to expand our minds and hearts while providing a foundation upon which a truly progressive human society can be built:

Non-injury in thought, word and deed. Respect for all living beings is basic to our conduct. We demonstrate this respect by acting without the intention of causing harm through our thoughts, words or deeds. This is not to rule out the use of force if one’s intent is defensive or genuinely corrective of immoral behavior.

Benevolent truthfulness. The essence of truthfulness is found in the spirit of welfare we give to our thoughts and speech. Remaining close to objective truth is important, but the extent to which we use words for others’ welfare is the best yardstick of truthfulness.

Non-stealing. This principle means not taking, either physically or mentally, what rightfully belongs to others. This includes the thought of stealing as well as any action which deprives others of what is rightfully theirs.

Oneness of all creation. Oneness is the underlying reality of all creation. By striving for that state of mind in which we are fully aware of this unity, we can overcome our negative attitudes and base our actions on a profound love for all.

Non-indulgence in non-essential luxuries. By limiting our consumption of luxuries we can have more to share with others who are in greater need. Respect for the common ecological heritage of our planet and sympathy for the poverty and suffering of others reminds us that accumulation of excess wealth deprives others of the basic necessities of life.

Cleanliness. Cleanliness is both physical and mental. Maintaining mental purity and trying to remove selfish tendencies are as important as a clean body and environment.

Contentment. By striving to maintain inner calmness, we develop a feeling of contentment. This does not imply laziness or passive acceptance of unethical behavior. Instead, our inner reserve of contentment should be used for maintaining mental equilibrium and broadminded perspective while dealing with the anxieties of daily life.

Selfless service. Serving others with the true spirit of selflessness is a key to overcoming barriers which separate the human race. By transcending our individual needs we experience the greater joy of sharing ourselves with others.

Understanding universal truths. Developing a clear understanding of the universal truths which underlie the world’s greatest scriptures and literature uplifts our consciousness. Deep penetration into the true meaning of any and all words is an important way to increase mental clarity and broaden the scope of our mind.

Attainment of our highest human potential. The goal of life is the fulfillment of our highest human potential. This fulfillment comes through sincere effort to become loving human beings and to realize our connectedness with the consciousness that pervades the entire universe.

Copyright 2015 ProutWomen.org

WB Communist Leaders to be Questioned Over Bijon Setu

Past and present West Bengal communist heads will be called in for questioning for their alleged role in the massacre of 16 monks and a nun of Ananda Marga in Kolkata in 1982.

Photo: The late communist chief Jytoi Basu, Chief Minister of West Bengal 1977-2000 (left) with former WB Communist Party leader Somnath Chatterjee, one of several former communist heads who will now be questioned over the Bijon Setu massacre.

(June 2015) – Past and present West Bengal communist heads will be called in for questioning for their alleged role in the massacre of 16 monks and a nun of Ananda Marga in Kolkata in 1982, sources in the Justice Amitabha Lala commission, formed to probe the massacre after the Trinamool government came to power in 2011, told Indian media.

Justice Lala told Hindustan Times his probe focussed on certain communist leaders who reportedly had made provocative speeches, branding the Ananda Margis child-lifters, at a party-organised convention on February 6, 1982.

A major source of information for the commission was the deposition of Sher Singh, then additional district magistrate of 24 Parganas, who claimed he had come to know about the plan two months ahead and alerted his boss, district magistrate Ranu Ghosh on January 16. But no step was taken to stop the killings.

The reason for the massacre was the PROUT philosophy propagated by the organisation, Singh told. The Ananda Marga organisation supports PROUT throughout India and the world.

The Indian media, such as the Indian Express, displays an increasing interest in the case that was hushed up for decades until recently.

Why Is Capitalism Taking So Long To Collapse?

The existence of powerful international bodies and their frequent interaction with world stage politicians, is the main structural reason that enables global capitalism today to somehow keep its head above water in an otherwise lost game.

[May 29, 2015] – All over the world, experts and laypeople alike are increasingly wondering about the apparent resilience of global capitalism. Against all odds it is still in existence, a coherent worldwide moneymaking machinery for the benefit of the 0.1% at the cost of the welfare and survival of the 99.9%.

So why doesn’t global capitalism go the same way as communism and join all other useless systems of the past in the junk yard of history?

Capitalist organisations

Perhaps the most obvious factor responsible for keeping global capitalism alive is that this is not 1929 when international capitalism was most prone to the natural ups-and-downs of speculative stock exchange markets.

International regulatory bodies were then mostly political. At world summits political issues remained prominent, while economic policy was still deemed to be a national concern. Today, it seems to be the other way around; economic and monetary policy dominates the world scene.

Frequent meets

Whereas a few decades ago the world's financial elite used to meet annually, in Davos, meetings between significant financial policy makers from all over the world are now more frequent and held on a needs basis. For instance, at the time of writing this piece, world finance ministers happen to be having another meet, this time in Dresden, Germany.

The first global financial initiative was probably the 1944 Bretton Woods conference where the ground-rules for commercial and financial relations among the world's major industrial states were established. Bretton Woods established the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD), the forerunner to the present World Bank Group.

Among other important international bodies today we find the WTO, the EU with its Central Bank, and regional bodies for economic cooperation on all continents, such as NAFTA (North America), SELA (Latin America), AEC (Africa), APEC (Asian-Pacific), etc.

The Institute of International Finance (IIF) is one international organisation that deserves special mention. It is a global association of 550 big banks, insurance companies, central banks, pension funds, and other types of financial institutions. The mission of IIF is "to support our members in prudently managing risks and to advocate for regulatory, financial, and economic policies that are in the broad interest of our members and that foster global financial stability and sustainable economic growth," according to iif.com.

The existence of these particular international bodies, and their frequent interaction with world stage politicians, is the main structural reason that enables global capitalism to somehow keep its head above water in an otherwise lost game.

Disorganised majority

Add to this the numerous human frailties among “the 99.9%,” such as an insufficient sense of responsibility, poor factual knowledge due to the  persuasive power of commercial media, overwhelmed by fear of the apparent powers of the status quo, etc., and the reasons for the continuation of the present exploitative system become even clearer.

It is only a question of time however. Even if the structural and oppressive powers of capitalism are multiplied a hundred times, the fact remains that the basic fault line of the system remains as catastrophic as ever: There is not enough for even a single person’s greed, we just have to cooperate and capitalism is not the system for doing so.

Inevitable downfall

In 1987 P.R Sarkar gave his landmark discourse on Economic Dynamics, wherein he foresaw "the inevitable downfall of both capitalism and communism.” Later that night he was asked how long it would take for that to happen. Sarkar replied that the fall of communism was at hand, whereas the fall of capitalism would take just a little longer. He remarked that capitalism was a much older and therefore more entrenched system than communism. Sarkar also touched on the factors outlined above, that the capitalism of today is better equipped to handle a deep crisis than it was back in 1929.

Sarkar then made an undulating motion with his hand indicating several ups-and-downs, and commented that the fate of capitalism would vacillate like that for some time, until at one point, he said, “it will go down and only down and so far down that no one will see where capitalism went and it will never return.”

A severe stage

In the above mentioned discourse, Sarkar pointed out that when society's capital is concentrated in the hands of a few, the majority of people are exploited by a handful of people. When the exploitation enters a severe stage, a serious explosion takes place. "This explosion is known as a depression in the economic world. The concentration of wealth and particularly the concentration in the value of wealth is the fundamental cause of a depression," Sarkar elucidated.

He added, that when capitalists discover that their investments no longer yield expected profits, "then they stop rolling the money. This keeps the money immobile or inert in various ways. As the money does not roll, there is no investment, no production, no income and hence no purchasing power, and the situation becomes so dangerous that there are few buyers to buy the commodities," Sarkar concluded.

By Trond Øverland

Nuclear Revolution In A Nutshell

By T N Das

Today revolution is in the minds of many, as economic inequality reaches unprecedented levels of injustice and as the world economy shows signs of further crisis due to the recent crisis in the Chinese economy. What we have seen in history with various political revolutions and what we have seen in recent times with colour-coded revolutions scripted by Western powers offers little hope for meaningful change. At the same time there are realizations of the need for a revolution in various intellectual disciplines due to the ongoing crisis of civilization that has brought humanity to its present state. There is in addition a need for a revolution in the realm of economics and agriculture which has been acknowledge by many. The advocates of these other forms of revolution generally shy away from facing the necessity of a revolution to end the current political and economic order of global capitalism. Shrii Prabhat Ranjan Sarkar integrates these various types of revolution seen in history into a holistic, comprehensive revolution known as Nuclear Revolution.

"Ideology has nothing to do with various
abstract or dogmatic doctrines."

Shrii Sarkar reveals three major aspects of revolution known as shástra, shastra and astra. Shástra means scripture generally but actually means, Shásanát tárayet yastu sah shástrah parikiirtitah – that which liberates one physically, psychically and spiritually by rationally inspiring one to dedicate oneself to a structured code of discipline. Shastra denotes that which protects the physical, the metaphysical and the spiritual existence. Shastra means the effort to control exploiters and their mafia by physical force like slapping, pushing or pinching, etc. Various forms of civil disobedience such as morchas, bandhs are also collective forms of Shastra. That is, in shastra there is physical contact and every possibility of shedding blood. Astra means to control or dominate others by using a weapon like a stick, knife, gun, etc. Here bloodshed will almost always happen.

What are the scriptures of revolution? Whatever inspires one with love for suffering humanity, animals and plants is a proto-scripture Whatever gives one the inspiration to dedicates oneself and to sacrifice and undergo hardship fighting for exploited humanity is a proto-scripture. Whatever gives one ideas about how to fight or how to solve a problem, how a particular type of exploitation work is also a proto-scripture. Ultimately however, the question is liberation – both internal and external, both individual and collective. To liberate the mind from debasing tendencies is a practical reality of spiritual meditation. To liberate Consciousness (Atman) from identifying with and being dominated by lower levels (kosas) cannot be done by an ordinary scripture. Revolution as we have seen involves changing the collective psychology. To change the psychology from warrior to intellectual or to capitalist is merely a change in the surface of the collective mind. To evolve higher levels of mind and to create new, elevating and benevolent flows in the collective mind requires tremendous psychic and spiritual energy or shakti. The very purpose of meditation is to acquire such shakti for such a true revolution.

Spiritual Revolution

Let us take a closer look at the definition of revolution of PROUT.

Tivrashaktisampátena gativardhanaḿ viplavah.
[Revolution is the application of tremendous force to accelerate the speed of the social cycle.]

How does an ordinary person acquire this tremendous kind of force. The fact is that even the most powerful revolutionary personalities are often unable to move a society even towards evolution let alone revolution as seed in the cases of Bhagat Singh, Blanqui, Che Guevara and others. Here one must be clear about energy, power or shakti. Energy of the universe is something we know to some extent. But the radiant spiritual energy that could move a young peasant girl like Saint Joan of Arc to lead an army to liberate her country from British rule, the omnipotent divine love that could lead an ordinary scholar like Chaitanya Mahaprabhu to become transformed into a revolutionary of divine love who could even make the extremist Pathans of Afghanistan dance, singing the Lord’s Name is beyond the imagination of most people. This is the kind of energy that can create a true revolution or nuclear revolution.

The term “shakti sampát” refers to the descent of spiritual energy due to divine grace. This is a mystery or fantasy to ordinary people but to those initiated into Tantra meditation it is a practical reality. This spiritual energy strikes at the primordial spiritual force at the base of the spine. Tantra refers to “tiivra” or “tremendous” amount of grace as the type of grace that can radically transform a person in a very short period of time.

Most of the time, our mental energy is wasted in countless thoughts, sentiments, passions, instincts, propensities and so forth. Tantra meditation wages war firstly on all these sentiments that debase us. Secondly Tantra withdraws the mind from all these mental diversions and diverts it towards pure Consciousness (Atman). This gives a person tremendous power for moral, ideological, cultural, economic and political revolution. When one’s mind starts of merge in that pure Consciousness one starts to realize divine love which is the most powerful force in the universe. By this love one comes in contact with the Supreme Beloved deep within the core of oneself. Then that Supreme Beloved works directly through one’s body. Then one becomes an instrument of divine power that can create a nuclear revolution. That Supreme Beloved is the Nucleus of the physical, psychic and spiritual worlds. This is why Shrii Prabhat Ranjan Sarkar says in the book Talks on PROUT that nuclear revolution means “controlling all the three nuclei of the universe – physical, psychic and spiritual.”

Now when we are talking about nuclear revolution we are talking about tiivra (tremendous) descent of spiritual energy (shakti sampátena) we are talking on the level of the collective mind. When any small group of people or even an individual endowed with tremendous spiritual power (shakti) is able to create a powerful current in the collective mind this paves the way towards revolution. This involves accelerating the evolution of higher levels of the collective mind. The first is the level of the Sublime (Vijiṋánamaya Kośa) which is the realm of spiritual discrimination and spiritual wisdom which alone will enable society to stop being manipulated by capitalist propaganda and mind-control techniques. The second level of the collective mind that needs to be developed is the subtle causal level (Hirańmaya Kośa) which is the realm of the raptures of divine love. When this layer of mind is developed in the collective mind, no longer will religious hatred, violence and dogma plague human society.

Kiirtana or singing the Lord’s Name with intense longing in a group dedicated to creating a spiritual matrix (mańd́ala) of divine love around the Supreme Beloved (Bábá) has the power to launch such a revolution. Such a group is called Bábá Pari Mańd́ala Gośt́i. However this potential of kiirtan to create a spiritual revolution that can explode like a volcano into the cultural, economic, social and political spheres has thus far been unutilized in human history. This is why Shrii Sarkar has said that “NOW is the time has come to manifest the glory of kiirtana.” There have been many mantras or empowered incantations that have been used in the past. The kiirtan mantra of the present is “Bábá Náma Kevalam”. Try and see the power of this mantra for yourself and then use it to liberate yourself, your samája (socio-economic bio-region) and this planet.

The Native Australians connected with the Tantra of the Austrics of India developed techniques of spiritualizing landscaped with spiritual energy. They are called Svatantra Kśetras in Sanskrit. Svatantra meaning "freedom", comes from the words "sva" + "tantra". Sva means "self" and so freedom lies in establishing oneself in Tantra. Tantra means the practice that liberates one through expansion. It is the oldest form of yoga and is a revolutionary war against all internal vices and their manifestation in the society. This creates a revolutionary transformation of crude mind-stuff (citta) into the power of Consciousness (Citi shakti). When the people of a small region (like a district or bhukti) are established in Tantra internally by conquering all the vices, prejudices, narrow sentiments of the collective mind as well as externally by ending all discrimination and exploitation, they are truly free. Kśetra means "a cultivated field, a sacred spot, a geometrical figure (including a spiritual design holding subtle energies called a yantra or mandala), abode or place of origin." Spiritually a Kśetra is only created by creating a direct link with the Kśetrajiṋá or the Supreme Knower or Supreme witnessing entity of this land. Just like in internal meditation we come in contact with the Supreme Knower or Supreme Subjectivity deep within our layers of "I-feeling" and realize how it underlies our normal feeling of being a knower (i.e. our existential feeling), similarly here we are discovering the Supreme Consciousness or Supreme Witnessing Awareness of a particular geography. These areas are most powerfully and easily created when the collective mind of a devotional group (Bábá Pari Mańd́ala Gośt́i) creates a link with the Supreme Beloved or Macrocosmic Nucleus through kiirtan and then creates a link with the physical and electromagnetic vibrations of an area of land. This will charge the hills, rivers, valleys, forests, ponds with spiritual forces. This is the foudation of a true samája or a eco-cultural region. The meaning of Kśetra is thus explained as follows

Kśemana tárayet yastu sah kśetrah parikiirttitah.
"That divinely blessed place where there is spiritual progress (Kśema) and service that liberates the people in the physical (social, economic, political, agricultural, etc.), psychic (cultural, educational, moral, philosophical, sentimental, psychological) and spiritual realms is known as a Kśetra."

Moral Revolution

Moral courage is what we find lacking everywhere and in everyone. To challenge the exploitation, injustice in small ways at certain times itself requires tremendous courage and sacrifice in our current era of silent Emergency. However to have the moral courage to mentally and emotionally face all the suffering caused by exploitation in the world today, to take the determination (samkalpa) that by divine grace this will all come to an end by a nuclear revolution is beyond the imagination of most people. Since the Global War on Terror began in 2001, a systematic campaign of fear has been created in every country. To overcome fear completely by the power of spiritual meditation is at the core of Tantra.

Morality does not merely lie in good actions in one’s personal life. If one’s family, workplace, community or nation is corrupt and is profiting from the exploitation and misery of others, one is in fact an immoral person. When one nation invades or robs other nations the national wealth is soaked in the blood of those exploited people from other nations. Similarly in one country if the money of the nation comes from the exploitation of various castes or tribes, then that money will fill one’s mind with the misery of those people. This is why we find people in rich countries that rob and invade other countries have a high suicide rate and a high rate of violence. This is why rich people in poor countries also are so unhappy and go to gurus.

To launch a moral revolution means to empower people with the courage to take control over their personal lives and become the kind of noble person they have always dreamed of being. Secondly it means to empower them to fight against immorality in their family, workplace and their samaja (state). Thirdly it means to work with them to liberate those who cannot speak or fight for themselves.
Shrii Sarkar began a moral revolution in the most corrupt state of Bihar and in the most corrupt departments such as the Indian Police Service, Bihar Military Police and the Central Excise Department. He forced disciples not just to stand up and stop corruption in their offices, he made them take action against mafias like the coal and timber mafias. This legacy of moral determination and courage led to the birth of the PROUT movement.

Shrii Prabhat Ranjan Sarkar has revealed the mission of moral revolution saying,

“So your duty is three-fold. Your first duty is to observe morality and to do intuitional practices. Without this you cannot have mental determination. Your next duty is to unite the moralists of the world, otherwise Dharma will not endure. The exploited masses who do not observe Yama and Niyama – the cardinal moral principles – cannot fight against their own sense of frustration. It is therefore necessary to unite the moralists. This will be your real Dharma. You will become great by doing this, because ideation of the Great makes a person great. At the third stage, you will have to mercilessly fight against sin wherever it has taken root in this world.
You will have to propagate this mission from door to door. No political party or so-called religious institution can bring salvation. Praising God in concerts with drums and cymbals will not bring salvation either, because this will not bring the sinner to submission. To curb the onslaughts of the immoralists today, arms are more necessary than drums and cymbals.”

Psychic Revolution

We have already talked about how newer levels of mind need to evolve and the level of Consciousness to be raised. Essentially the collective mind is governed by the crude level of mind (Kámamaya Kośa) concerned with the basic animal desires. The subtle level of mind (Manomaya Kośa) is concerned with higher activities of thinking and remembering. This is the layer of the collective mind that need to be made stronger because it is here that rationality, discussion and consensus building takes place. The tragedy is that the subtle layer of the collective mind is always manipulated by the stronger crude mind and its desires. Through these weaknesses capitalists are able to make people materialistic through the media. While in individual life it is very difficult to develop one’s rationality and liberate one’s mind from crude desires and from government propaganda, it is next to impossible for the collective mind to do this. This is why the development of higher levels of mind is so crucial for the collective mind.

The next three higher levels of the mind are collectively known popularly as the unconscious mind or astral mind. A more accurate name is superconscious mind because here the level of Consciousness is far greater than in the previous stages. The individual superconscious mind, the collective superconscious mind of a social group and the Cosmic superconscious mind are all one. For at this stage of Consciousness, the diversity of many beings is merging in one flow of Pure Bliss. This is why when an individual or society is dominated by this level of mind they become empowered with dynamism and love that gives them the power to overcome all obstacles.

The first level of mind that has to evolve in the collective mind of various societies is the supramental mind (Atimánasa Kośa). It is from this realm that emerge subtle desires such as desires concerning art, music and beauty. It is also from this realm that emerges the spiritual stir or awakening which blossom into a deep spiritual urge. It is because this layer is undeveloped in the collective mind that the mind of the crowd or other expressions of the collective mind is easily manipulated by government and corporate propaganda. When the collective mind has developed this supramental layer in only a primitive way then it is manipulated by sentimental propaganda that touches deep in the collective mind such as in the case of religious nationalism or fascism.

As the collective subtle mind is gradually evolving along the path of intellectuality, there is an even greater need to penetrate into the realm of pure Consciousness where knower, knowledge and the ‘known object’ all merge into one. Unless this happens the mind become analytical and obsessed with external differences of caste, religion, nation, species. So long as the mind runs after various material objects or runs after various narrow intellectual ideas or dogmas, there will be divisions, exploitation and war in the world. This is especially the case when it come to the collective mind. So the collective mind not merely has to develop subtler layers of mind but it has to move towards the psycho-spiritual realm where the mind merges in the oneness of Pure Consciousness.

So this is the preliminary tasks to be accomplished in a psychic revolution. But how is this possible? Firstly the ongoing struggle of countless activists seeking to educate the public, seeking to divert crowds from the path of violence must deepen in the form of a coordinated movement to reduce the influence of religious and corporate dogmas. The collective subtle mind must be goaded and guided onto the path of discrimination to be proactive in preventing harmful events and being prepared to deal with those that rise unexpectedly rather simply reactive to various external events. A good example is a killing. Rather than making it an issue of caste or religion, justice should be secured for the victim. There should be no question of robbing, raping or killing innocent people just because they belong to the same caste or religion of the victim. In this way individuals by tireless efforts have to try to lift the collective mind from the path of barbarism.

The second primary task is ideological. Ideology has nothing to do with various abstract or dogmatic doctrines. In PROUT, Idea occurs when the psyche or mind attains temporary parallelism or harmony with Pure Consciousness. So Idea is a blissful or mystical state of being and has nothing to do with any thought or concept or even feeling. Such ‘Ideas’ have been found by Oxford University studies of ordinary people to have occurred a few times in many people’s lives. Those who elevate their mind by regular meditation will have such experiences more often. When this experience or Idea is assimilated in our sentiments, concepts, emotions and thoughts this is the start of an ideological process. When this Idea manifests in our personal, family, cultural, social, economic and political lives this is the manifestation of an ideological life. As a result of this ideological process our minds becomes filled with thoughts and feelings arising from the spiritual experience of Blissful Consciousness.

Normally our minds are dominated by the external environment and our ideas come our external experiences and our reflections and abstractions from those experiences. For example from seeing a flower in Spring and feeling its beauty, we develop the abstract, intellectual idea of beauty. Thus normally as a civilization advances, it develops a rich legacy of ideas derived from material experiences. These material ideas are called ‘carbonic’ because they are derived from experiences of our bodies which are based on carbon compounds. When in an advanced civilization the quantity of these carbonic ideas become very large and when the wisdom (or pure ideology) arising from the primitive spirituality of its early days dies, this imbalance leads to degeneration and debasement. Such materialistic civilizations become goaded to extreme sensuality and violent imperialism and become demonic in the suffering the cause to other societies and to the environment.

When however the ideological or non-carbonic ideas become dominant in the mind, this can create a psychic and a spiritual revolution. Thus when many groups (Bábá Pari Mańd́ala Gośt́is) move towards divine love and when the shakti or power generated by that love is used to guide the collective mind away from narrow sentiments and crude passions through elevating sentiments and ideologies, this creates a revolution in the collective mind that is first psychic and then becomes increasingly spiritual or psycho-spiritual.

Cultural Revolution

The term cultural revolution normally reminds people of the horror of the Chinese purges of high-ranking party members by Mao in the 1960s that led to widespread destruction of traditional Chinese culture by mob psychology. By cultural revolution we mean firstly what is normally called a renaissance in western history. This involved the explosive development of different fields in the arts, in material sciences and in the more subtle realms of philosophy, history, anthropology that are called the humanities. The driving force was a movement against superstition, social injustice and dogma and a thirst for intellectual and social freedom. In India there was the Bhakti revolution in which movements of divine love led to the creation of new literature, arts and movements for social equality in emerging languages and cultures of India. In Iran, Turkey, Morocco a Sufi revolution took place in which movements created new literature based on divine love and propagated social equality and tolerance. Similar outbreaks of cultural spendour have been seen around the world in Tang Dynasty China, the Fourth Dynasty of Egypt and the Mayan Golden Age in Central America.

Currently the great spiritual civilizations, as well as the sublime spiritualities of various indigenous people (adivásis) all over the world are being destroyed by corporate culture of Hollywood, Bollywood, etc. In addition, each year many languages are dying. As per PROUT culture is the backbone of a society and without a backbone people will never rise to fight against exploitation. This is why cultural revolution is the key to nuclear revolution.

In every language, PROUT seeks to create a Renaissance to preserve and build upon the legacies of each culture and to develop it in the spirit of universal love and fight against exploitation. All of the different aspects of nuclear revolution such as economic, social, political revolution are all propagated through cultural revolution. This is why cultural revolution is the heart of nuclear revolution.

Shrii Prabhat Ranjan Sarkar initiated a cultural revolution in the Bengali language by first inaugurating a grammatical revolution based on the spiritual roots of letters (biija mantras) that is currently studied in the modern field of phono-semantics. Through an examination of vocabulary, Shrii Sarkar revealed the multiple meanings of different words, the various dialects, sub-dialects and blended languages and the relevant history and geography related to them. PROUT seeks to replicate this heritage of spiritual scholarship in other languages. Finally Shrii Sarkar created 5018 songs. They expressed His spiritual and social philosophy through the medium of enchantingly tender songs that revealed unknown realms of divine love. To spread this bliss in every language and culture is the mission of Prout’s nuclear revolution.

Social Revolution

In reality a true human society has never existed on this planet. All societies have been narrowly biased towards a particular race, caste, ethnic group, economic class, language or religion. This bias has led to endless exploitation, violence in human history. A true society is defined as Samánam ejati iti samájah: Society is the collective movement of a group of individuals who have made a unanimous decision to move together towards a common goal.

While there have been many social revolutions in history that have shaken or broken the various form of social discrimination and exploitation, none of them led to the creation of a new society. In fact in many cases either the original ruling class was left in power or a new ruling class was created that exploited the society anew.

A genuine social revolution is created in nuclear revolution through Neo-humanism. Neohumanism expands traditional humanism into universalism or the cult of love for all beings. From the expansion of mind created by meditation, Neohumanism fosters the spirit of rationality. Only someone who has overcome his inner vices by spiritual practice can be rational. Others can only deceive themselves or others with philosophies that only mire society in confusion. With the power (shakti) of the divine love that blossoms from spiritual practice, Neohumanism is able to fight all the narrow sentiments that divide and brutalize society. For rationality alone cannot defeat sentiment only by analysis and appeals to reason. A more powerful and universal sentiment is needed to defeat these narrow sentiments. This powerful sentiment does not come from abstract intellectual universalism but from the limitless bliss of divine love.

The sentiments that Neohumanism fights can be divided into several categories. Firstly there is geo-sentiments focusing around a particular place or country. Secondly there is socio-sentiments focusing around a particular social group. The group can be a race, ethnic group, caste, economic class or religion. Thirdly there is pseudo-humanist sentiment or the doctrine of human superiority over all of creation which has resulted in the massacre of countless plants and animals and is right now destroying our Mother Earth. The marvel of mystical love is that it can transform any narrow type of love into a unique variety of divine love. Mystical love enables one to see the ocean in a drop and find the cosmos in a dust particle. This is a practical experience for those who are on the spiritual path. In this way, rejecting the narrow, diseased forms of love for a particular country, social group or for humanity, Neohumanism create a universal form of love for that country by finding the Infinite Consciousness in the most minute aspects of that particular country or group. Truly all the forms of nationalism and groupism are distorted and diseased forms of love. When one lives Neohumanism one learns for the first time how to love not just the country but the plants, animals, the rivers and even the rocks. In this way the expansion of endless diversity will only beautify the unity of society. This has to be experienced by spiritual practice and practiced in daily and not believed as an intellectual doctrine. This sublimation of human sentiments alone will create a true society for the first time in the history of this planet. This is based on the spirit of eternal fight for social justice and social equality. The spirit of this fight is nothing but the blazing tenderness of infinite justice for each and every entity of this universe.

Economic Revolution

This is the most unique aspect of PROUT’s nuclear revolution. One can write a book on this topic alone. The value of economic revolution is rarely been appreciated in history. The revolution in Russia and China of the last century had certain common features. Both revolutions took place when the nations were being attacked by foreign countries (Germany and China), when in the ensuing breakdown various factions emerged that fought for power. Furthermore both countries made the mistake of trying to achieve political power through a military revolution before having begun their struggle for economic revolution. As a result when the communists came into power they had to force their economic ideology on the people and the people were unwilling to accept it, which resulted in great atrocities. The reason the people did not accept it is that the economic theory of communism was undeveloped by practice and was based on fundamentally flaws. This led to confusion, anarchy, frustration and atrocities.

PROUT’s vision of economics is that it is the science of removing physical, psychic (psychological, emotional, philosophical) and spiritual suffering. Secondly PROUT is committed to the maximum utilization of all the different potentialities of these 3 realms. Traditionally various religious and economic doctrines had only spent time trying to utilize only a few aspects of usually one of the three realms of materiality, psyche and spirituality. Thirdly PROUT is committed to rational distribution of these resources for the welfare of everyone. PROUT’s approach is to guarantee the minimum requirements for all, guarantee maximum possible amenities for all and guarantee extra-special amenities for people with special talents.

PROUT’s economic revolution is a struggle for economic democracy. In every country people have no control over how their local resources, local ecology is utilized. Either government bureaucrats or corporation control their lives. So PROUT is the fight of every community, every region (samja) for economic freedom from slavery to outsiders. Through creating networks of cooperatives, PROUT seeks to create collective economic plans for every block or upabhukti (of each district). This grassroots economic planning enables the people to decide how they want to develop their own lands, gives them the yearning for the freedom to live those dreams and emboldens them to fight to free their lands from government and corporate control.

One strategy that has been used is that of Autonomous Zones (Svatantra Kśetras) which an undeveloped aspect of PROUT is thus far that Shrii Sarkar was developing in the ecovillage network of Ananda Nagar in mid 1990. In the state of Chiapas, Mexico the Mayan indigenous people who had been suffering centuries of exploitation and abuse by the Spanish speaking elites created the Zapatista movement. This movement occupied various parts of their land by media campaigns, mass protests, physical intimidation and sometimes armed struggle. In these autonomous zones they created their own laws as per their own culture and spiritual tradtions, created their own school and other institutions and ended the exploitation by outsiders considerably.

However PROUT is committed to liberation of every socio-economic region or samája. Through movements for cultural revival a foundation is created for the struggle for economic svarája (self-sovereignty). Even more crucially, the liberation struggles of each samrája are coordinated in solidarity with the struggles of nearby samájas on the same continent and around the world. This is PROUT’s vision for international economic revolution in a nutshell.

Political Revolution

Capturing military power and control over the government has been the aim of most revolutions. From a PROUT point of view control over the government is not a revolution. Political power should be the manifestation of moral power in the administration of a region. Hence control a country is not the task of political revolution. Making the administration of the land into a means to spread morality, justice and equality is the purpose of political power. Thus, political power does not flow out of the barrel of a gun but out of the heart of a moralist on fire with love for suffering humanity.

Most importantly, as per PROUT, the political authorities have no right to interfere and control the economy. Their only economic duty is to prevent the rise of capitalist exploiters and to provide the infrastructure needed at the block level as per the people’s block-level plans. Furthermore the vision behind these economic plans is to develop the culture and spirituality of that block. Hence the entire focus of a government is towards the local region rather than vice-versa and finally the motivation comes not from profit but from the bliss of spiritual life.

Based on this vision PROUT’s political revolution calls for a World Government. Since September 11th 2001, a Global War on Terror began. On September 28, 2001, the United Nations passed a resolution forcing all members to create anti-terrorism laws. Most nations around the world responded by creating special laws that gave the government special rights to suspend all political liberties in case of an emergency or as part of the struggle to fight terrorism. Most recently the war is predicted to last for the next 80 years. In other words in the name of fighting terrorists (often sponsored by various governments) the people of each country are made to live in a climate of fear and their political rights are being taken. This is what has been called an International State of Emergency.

In India for example for the last decade we have seen what has been called a ‘silent Emergency.’ Those who protest are being intimidated by goondas, threats of arrest and by smear tactics in the media. Even the ancient law of sedition – not used since the era when the British persecuted Indian freedom fighters – has been revived. The goal is to create a police state in every country as part of a mission of a Global Police State. To help further this plan, the current Global Economic Depression has been created so as to create a climate of fear and panic. In addition fascist or religious extremists are being supported by capitalists in each country.

There are many who do not want a World Government. However if humanity remains chained to nationalism, the coming centuries will be as bloody as the last century as new economic empires will take over from the dying American economic empire like the Chinese empire. Then once again nations will suffer from the imperialism of this new superpower. The evil of nationalism has been proved countless times throughout history. So long as humanity remained chained to the doghouses of separate nations, it can never become free from the Global Police State. Humanity has a clear choice – Global Tyranny of the Corporate Police State or Global Democracy based on local economic democracy and undaunted spiritual revolutionary leaders (sadvipras) chosen by suffering humanity. The movement towards this spiritually based global government starts with a Global Bill of Rights to safeguard the economic svarája (self-sovereignty) of every bioregion (samája), to prevent the abuse of any minority anywhere in the world, to end the horror of imperial wars and colonialism and to safeguard the rights of plants, animals and the Earth itself.

The political aspect of nuclear revolution does not end here. Human beings of different species exist on other planets. Through Neohumanistic love a universal family of all human beings and all plants, animals and the environments of the planets will be created called Ánanda Parivára or Cosmic Family of Divine Bliss. The mission to spread out the sentiments of this Cosmic family love, Cosmic family values of sharing, caring and merging is called Mahávishva or the Great Universe. This is the Cosmic Vision of PROUT’s nuclear revolution.

With this thrilling destiny before us, we must answer the cry of suffering being everywhere for justice, dignity and love. Answering this cry is the Supreme Expression of our Divinity and our humanity.

“The prehistoric human beings remained involved in group and clan clashes. The present humanity is involved in crude wars for dogmas. Then how far have they advanced? Let the marching ahead towards the Supreme Desideratum, taking all together, be the only mission for today’s human race, and let the pauseless fight against any and all opposing forces on the way to fulfillment of this mission be the sole fight befitting a human being. Let this very struggle be reckoned as the Supreme Expression.”
Shrii Prabhat Ranjan Sarkar

The Proutist Samaj Movement

By  Dr. Dhruba Hojai

DHojaiThe nature of the human mind is expansion. That's why it is restless. It longs for the infinite. The narrow domestic walls of our social and political mindsets are some of the many hindrances to the universal brotherhood and sisterhood.

"There is an urgent cry for moralists to unite."

Poet Rabindranath Tagore, the Nobel laureate, wrote in Gitanjali,

"Where the world has not been broken up into fragments
By narrow domestic walls, into that heaven of freedom, father, let my country awake."

The great assamese literary exponent and icon of Assamese music, Dr Bhupen Hazarika, sang in one of his famous songs, "Manuhe Manuhar Babe" (the first verse translated into English),

"If human fails to help humanity,
Who will think for humanity?
With a feeling of li’l sympathy
Won’t be a matter of indignity?"

All great thinkers of modern times want the sub-societies created in the past to merge into one universal society which is the human society. But,what is the way to achieve this goal?

The 'budhijivis' or intelligent classes from all walks of life realise the defects in the present systems but, unfortunately, lack the abilities of showing the way for a universal cure. Constitutions of countries are being amended by politicians throughout the world on and off to rectify the existing systems in vain. These remain merely as laws of the respective countries but the basic human right which is to live without exploitation remain violated everywhere. Human beings have tried religion, communism and capitalism on this planet which are now just passing phases.

The present economy of this planet is in chaos. We ought to realise that philosophies based on religion, communism and capitalism have proven to be defective and not natural because they have divided the human race into castes, creeds, communities, the rich nations and the poor nations. It is but high time to realise that the existing systems have failed to address the problems of the societies and any further expectations of revival of these systems will be a folly and detrimental to the very existence of mankind.

So what is the way out? The merger of all the societies into one universal society for the good of mankind is not a one step matter. Shri Prabhatrainjan Sarkar, otherwise known by his spiritual name Shri Shri Anandamurtiji to his devotees, propounded a unique system in accordance with the movement of wheel of the 'yogs' or ages as a viable alternative. His economic theory termed Progressive Utilisation Theory or PROUT is unique and most acceptable today because it's just natural.

Anandamurtiji said that spirituality is an intuitional science which, if practiced correctly, will benefit mankind, especially in the present stage of spirito-psychic, social and economic crises that the world is facing during the present wheel of social revolution transforming the age of acquisitors or capitalists into the age of warriors.

Anandamurtiji had explained during one of his many discourses that communism would fall like a house of cards and capitalism would vanish like a burst of crackers because these two philosophies were not based on spirituality and hence defective and bound to fail. That is what we saw when the great communist power like USSR disintegrated 25 years ago, and capitalism is also showing signs of cracking up. The liquidation of corporate financial giants, viz. AIG and Lehman Brothers in 2008 and the impending financial disaster of the famous Ford Motor Company, are the early signs of the swift but inevitable end to the present capitalism thriving on borrowed time.

P.R. Sarkar divided the world into 266 socioeconomic units or 'samajas'. The economy of a particular zone is dependent upon the social behaviour of the people. As for example, the money earned in a particular samaj should not be invested outside but reinvested in the same samaj for it's development.

These samaj movements are very important. The socioeconomic zones are related to the microvita that flow through the cosmos and, therefore, are in accordance with the laws of nature. We should realise that the American economics cannot sustain until the language, culture and the economics of the indigenous American indians are  developed. The socioeconomic developments of these samajas are the stepping stones towards the foundation the universal human society.

The Amra Bangali is one of these samaj movements on line of the Proutist ideology, which particularly seeks socioeconomic development of indigenous people of Bengal without which the social, cultural and economic development of Bengal is an impossibility. However, these samaj movements will not be successful without the active participation of the moralists. That's why there is an urgent cry for moralists of the world to unite.

Dr Dhruba Hojai
http://drdhrubahojai.in
House # 24(Prashantika), Sankar Nagar
Lakhami Path, Beltola Tiniali
Guwahati-781028
INDIA

The Yoga of Economics

Dr. Sohail Inayatullah takes a look at the ancient system of Yoga, and in particular some of its ethical principles, through socioeconomic lenses. Republished with the kind permission of PROUT Journal, New Delhi.

By Sohail Inayatullah

Yoga, defined alternatively, to unite with the infinite or as series of poses to regulate the body's glandular system is usually not linked to the economy. However, there is much we can learn from the practice of Yoga in creating more effective business strategy and a more balanced world economy.

"As with economics, this means that there are natural cycles in the life of a person or organization. Pauses need not be considered negative growth but as chances to evaluate what part of the business or organization are worth maintaining, what parts need to be jettisoned and what aspects transformed. This is true at the personal level as well."

As a physical exercise or commonly known as “innercise,” Yoga is linked to enhanced wellbeing. In a study using Magnetic resonance spectroscopic imaging, regular Yoga practitioners exhibited higher levels of the amino acid, GABA, which is linked to a reduction in anxiety. GABA helps fight of depression and is essential for a healthy and relaxed mind. Yoga has also become a big business in the West valued at 42 billion dollar (courses, clothes, mats, for example). Indeed, business strategist and futurist Sudhir Desai of Boston, Massachusetts humorously comments that perhaps it is time to outsource Yoga to India.

However, what I wish to explore is how the principles of Yoga can be used to transform our current world economy as well as to strategically help organizations manoeuvre and create alternative futures.

1 Flexibility

First, Yoga is about flexibility. Enhanced flexibility is gained through holding postures. Done daily and slowly, harmonized with breathing, Yoga over time increases flexibility. Those who don't practice Yoga find themselves becoming rigid. Metaphorically, they are unable to adapt to changing conditions. They cannot bend to the changing wind. Thus, when there are changes in the world economy or in one's personal economy, they remain rigid. The Yogic principle of flexibility suggests that we always need to be able to bend and bow. This does not mean, however, letting the wind carry us wherever, as Yoga postures are held with inner strength.

One strategy to negotiate dramatic changes is to develop scenarios so as to reduce risk. A deeper approach is individual and organizational flexibility, so irrespective of which scenario occurs, the person/organization does not break. Fexibility in organizations is about enhancing capacity and to some extent can be operationalized as policies that ensure that employees do not experience conflict between work and family. This leads to cost savings and higher productivity as family life is not sacrificed for work. Other measures could include how employees respond to stressful situations.

2 Breathe in, Breath out

Second, Yoga is about breath, prana. Breathe in, breathe out. Yoga is about slowing the heart rate down, slowing the mind down. Yoga is about being present. As economic or social crises result, the lesson from Yoga is to breathe, to slow down, to reflect and not be carried away by the challenge at hand. By being present, relaxed, often an answer to the problem can emerge from the intuitive part of the mind, from another self. By slowing down, we can see the problem anew as panic and fear either disappear or are decreased. The “fight or flight” reaction does not dominate.

3 Pause

Third, yoga is based on pauses fits and starts. It is not a continuous linear pattern of endless growth. Rather, like the breath, there are pauses. The stopping allows for reflection, for gathering energy, before the next speeding up. Mystic Shrii P.R.Sarkar suggests that life is like a series of rolling hills. There are pauses between climbs what he calls systaltic pauses. We rest, regain focus, and then move forward. Even if one believes life is like climbing a ladder or a race, it is important to rest between rungs or after a race, to gather energy and momentum.

As with economics, this means that that there are natural cycles in the life of a person or organization. Pauses need not be considered negative growth but as chances to evaluate what part of the business or organization are worth maintaining, what parts need to be jettisoned and what aspects transformed. This is true at the personal level as well. On can ask: what aspects of my life behaviours, attitudes and assumptions – need to be pruned and what aspects need to grow and what parts need to transform?

4 Concentration and Meditation

While yoga may begin with external exercises it tends to conclude with innercises- the most powerful is concentration and meditation. The benefits are overwhelming. Meditation can increase the thickness of regions that control attention and process sensory signals from the outside world. In a program that neuroscientist Amishi Jha of the University of Miami calls mindfulness-based mind-fitness training, participants build concentration by focusing on one object, such as a particular body sensation. The training, she says, has shown success in enhancing mental agility and attention “by changing brain structure and function so that brain processes are more efficient,” the quality associated with higher intelligence.

Meditation, as well, can switch genes on and off. In a recent study on the impact of meditation on the body, researchers concluded: “…meditators showed a range of genetic and molecular differences, including altered levels of gene-regulating machinery and reduced levels of pro-inflammatory genes, which in turn correlated with faster physical recovery from a stressful situation”.

Specifically: “The results show a down-regulation of genes that have been implicated in inflammation. The affected genes include the pro-inflammatory genes RIPK2 and COX2 as well as several histone deacetylase (HDAC) genes, which regulate the activity of other genes epigenetically by removing a type of chemical tag. What's more, the extent to which some of those genes were down-regulated was associated with faster cortisol recovery to a social stress test involving an impromptu speech and tasks requiring mental calculations performed in front of an audience and video camera”.

This is important as there is a direct correlation, argue the authors, between chronic low-grade inflammation and the most common problems of the modern world including cardiovascular and metabolic disease, cancer and neuropsychiatric disorders. Meditation can make the person and the nation healthier. By reducing national health care costs, debt can be reduced and capital reinvested in prevention. And by increasing well-being and purpose, meditation can enhance productivity, increasing the quality of life.

5 Tandava, creative destruction

Fifth, associated with Yoga is a dance called tandava. This is the dance of Shiva, wherein Shiva dances between life and death, the infinite and finite, the eternal and the temporal. The narrative is Shiva is not just the creator and the maintainer but also the destroyer. Without overdoing the link to Joseph Schumpeter's notion of creative destructive as one of the hallmarks of capitalism's strengths, it is important to note that Yoga is not just about stretching and feeling good. Yoga also highlights the needs for destruction of behaviours, attitudes and assumptions about self, economy and planet. Certainly the Occupy wall street movement has made it clear that the inequity built into capitalism needs to end. The delinking of the financial system from the real economy needs to end. Others, more radically, assert that Shiva needs to engage in the dance of tandava on capitalism itself. Five hundred years of one system is more than enough. Time for a change? Time for Shiva's tandava?

6 The Ethical context

Sixth, whether exercise or spiritual unification, Yoga also has a critical ethical context. This context is called Yama and Niyama. Yama, writes Yogi Dada Vedaprajinananda, means that which controls and the practice of Yama means to control actions related to the external world. Niyama, in contrast, is focused on self-regulation. Both are crucial for creating a context for the expansion of goods, services, ideas and purpose. In this section, I explore five aspects of Yama and Niyama, in specific, the implications of ahimsa, aparigraha, tapah, asteya, and santosh on economics.

The first Yama is ahimsa or least violence, even non-violence. For the Yoga practitioner, the simple question is: Am I partaking in aspects of the economy that lead directly to violence (person to person, person to nature, person to animal) or indirectly through structural violence, where the system creates violence, as in the Indian caste system. Applied to the economy, this would mean moving away from Big M or the Big meat industry. In the USA, estimates vary but generally a conservative number is 10 billion land animals are slaughtered annually. Globally the number is 58 billion.

In a switch to a vegetarian economy, certainly there would be many losers and winners. And it is only fair that Big Meat gets a decade or so to start to switch over to vegetarian options. Structurally, this means the end of subsidies for the meat industry and the support of education and policies that moves toward a vegetarian society. Overtime the goal would be an economy rooted in ahimsa.

Big Tobacco would also be directly impacted. The World Health Organization estimated that one billion people will die this century from tobacco related illnesses and over 165,000 children die annually from complications of second hand smoke.

An ahimsa-based economy would also support anti-bullying legislation in workplaces and create legislation where there was none. Programs that reduce bullying such as meditation programs would as well be encouraged. Essentially, instead of a focus on social Darwinism, ahimsa would create, as Riane Eisler argues, a caring economics. The question asked by regulatory authorities would be: does this economic activity create violence or peace. Where there are conflicts, is there harm reduction policies? That we spend globally 1.62 trillion dollars on military expenditures tells us that our world economy does not follow ahimsa.

As relevant as ahimsa is aparigraha which is essentially about voluntary simplicity. It is the ecological principle of asking before accumulation of a physical object, as well as a mental object, do I need this in my life? Am I purchasing it because I can use it or because I wish to demonstrate to my neighbours and others that I am important? What am I truly purchasing is the yogic question. Am I purchasing the object or is at issue the lack of inferiority I feel?

While the implication of aparigraha is to some extent an economics of austerity, this does not mean a reduction in standard of living. There are billions of objects, the basic needs of education, health, clothes, housing, food, communication and connectivity that need purchasing. Aparigraha is about intent. It is also about full information. Who made the product, how much did the worker make, how much did the middle man, the trader? Was anyone or nature harmed its production? Aparigraha leads to questioning of consumption. Aparigraha is also contextual. Each epoch and each region has different levels of appropriate technologies and consumption. And one can reduce material items but still collect unnecessary thoughts or reduce material items but secretly desire them. Aparigraha is an economics of wise consumption not repressed asceticism. Yoga teacher, Dada Vedaprajinanda writes that aparigraha means to “not hoard wealth which is superfluous to our actual needs,” what Shrii Sarkar has called, “keep the money rolling.”

Applied to the world economy, aparigraha suggests that if one person or nation hoards wealth, it may lead to others having less. It certainly slows down the movement of goods and services. Fluidity and flexibility disappear as trust and legitimacy decrease in the overall system. The results of hoarding are obvious throughout the global economy. At the external level, hoarding decreases when there are regulations that create a maximum income. At the inner level, hoarding decreases when individuals trust their own capacity to earn wealth, and they trust the rules of the game when there is transparency, a fair judiciary and accountability. And when the maximum and minimum are linked to each other, as the maximum goes up so does the minimum, then wealth and equity can increase.

Tapah, a yogic principle, suggests that one must undergo some physical hardship to attain the goal, counters much of New Age thinking, which often asserts that hard work is not necessary. In Yoga, there is great value to persistence and perspiration. Every successful individual, organization or nation knows this. Short term desires are sacrificed for the long term. Children who say no to the doughnut in front of them for two doughnuts later do much better in life. Delayed gratification, putting in the hours, and “no short cuts” are all crucial for success (within our contemporary worldview). And the hard work may be simply thinking different examining one's narratives and seeing if they are sabotaging one's goal orientation, sacrificing neural pathways that are not productive.

Asteya, as a well, the yogic principle of not stealing or renouncing the desire to acquire or retain the wealth of others is crucial if we wish to ensure the economy has legitimacy and trust. If there is theft at the top senior government ministers, corporate CEOs or civil social society leaders then the system loses legitimacy. Those closer to the bottom feel that if the elite can get away with it, why can't they take short cuts or engage in micro-corruption. Good governance is essentially about ensuring that the political-economy is transparent, that at every level of society, there is no theft. Laws thus must be fair and there must be equality before the law. With asteya as an operating principle, trust increases, legitimacy expands and wealth can grow and circulate. It is not siphoned off at every step of the way, rather, it moves and moves, allowing all to benefit. Thus: higher ethics leads to stronger economies.

While there are other important ethical guidelines in Yoga, I conclude with santosh or contentment for things received. This is principle of acceptance, of “enoughness.” In spiritual traditions, this is similar to allowing, of appreciation of what is. While seemingly in contradiction with other principles of expansion of the mind, in Yoga there is a both-and approach, of being present to the dialectics of the present, of both tandava (destroying or deconstructing what-is) and santosh (accepting and appreciating what-is). Behind this is the notion that happiness is a virus. The happier I am, the happier others will be, as contentment radiates from person to person. Like money, which needs to keep rolling, happiness needs to keep moving, from person to person, economic system to ecosystem, and flower to planet.

In conclusion, Yoga leads to prama or dynamic equilibrium, appreciating what-is and creating more wealth and equity for all – local and global, self and planet, inner and outer.

First Principle of Economic Democracy

"People will have to opt for either political democracy or economic democracy. That is, they will have to choose a socio-economic system based on either a centralized economy or a decentralized economy. Which one will they select?"
– Shrii Prabhat Rainjan Sarkar, propounder of PROUT

1) The first requirement for economic democracy is that the minimum requirements of a particular age – including food, clothing, housing, education and medical treatment – must be guaranteed to all. Not only is this an individual right, it is also a collective necessity, because the easy availability of the minimum requirements will increase the all-round welfare of society.

Commentary: As Schopenhauer noted, ideas go through three phases – first they are ridiculed, second they are violently opposed and finally they are accepted as common sense. Throughout history slaves, saints and scholars have proclaimed, fought for and died for this most basic, common sense principle. All rights become meaningless without the right of live. Can there be nothing more common sense than this principle? This principle has been stated by Shrii Sarkar in the form of a Sanskrit aphorism (sutra).

Yugasya sarvanimnaprayojanaḿ sarveśáḿ vidheyam.
[The minimum requirements of an age should be guaranteed to all.]

However this principle has been rejected by the majority of economists since the field began. This is because the very meaning and mission of the word economics has been violated. The English word “economics” means literally the laws of the household of a community. The idea of every community and the entire human community as one household, with one hearth of one family has never been accepted by the so-called civilized communities although it is common sense to many so-called backward, indigenous communities. The current system of economics is based on the slave household where a small group of people fatten themselves on the misery of the rest. A new, genuine economics thus must find its mission in the protecting and thriving of every single member of our human household and this includes our plant and animal brethren as well as the rivers, mountains and the Earth itself.

From this vision comes PROUT’s mission that the foremost branch of economics is People’s Economics. Shrii Sarkar defines this as follows:

“People’s economy deals with the essential needs of the people in general – the production, distribution, marketing, shipping, storage, pricing, sales, freight charges, pro forma costing, and all related activities of such essential needs. Most importantly, it is directly concerned with the guaranteed provision of minimum requirements such as food, clothing, housing, medical treatment, education, transportation, energy and irrigation water. Continuous improvement in and ready availability of these requirements is the key factor in people’s economy.

The minimum requirements can be assured through guaranteed purchasing capacity which should be enshrined in the constitution as a fundamental or cardinal human right. This will give the citizens of the country legal power if their minimum requirements are not met, hence the necessity of purchasing capacity will be reinforced by constitutional law. As people’s economy will deal with minimum requirements and people’s subsistence problems, it must take precedence over other parts of the economy.

People’s economy should also be concerned with the development of both private and cooperative industries. Private industries would be limited in size and scope to prevent monopoly production and exploitation, and would be required to function as cooperatives once they grow too large. Cooperative industries are the best means of independently organizing people so that they take collective responsibility for their livelihood.

People’s economy also includes employment for all; the eradication of mass poverty; the development of rural economy; the phase-wise socialization of land into the hands of those who work physically or intellectually for proper production; practical training programmes to impart skills which enable people to find employment in their immediate urban or rural locality; work placement; and the transportation, trans-shipment, loading and unloading of any materials, even if they are not economically viable in the short-term. It is also concerned with the generation of cheap power and the supply of water, which are essential if people are to control their local economies. Finally, it includes economic decentralization, cooperative dynamo and block-level planning.” (“Quadri-Dimensional Economy”)

The second and older word for economics is the Sanskrit word Artha. Artha as per Shrii Sarkar means the temporary removal of physical, psychic (intellectual, emotional, cultural, intuitional) and spiritual suffering. Hence economics or Artha is a libratory science. The current system of economics was developed by agents of the British and American Empires and is designed as a propaganda tool to justify the economic looting of criminal elites and to justify the violence they use to attain their goals. A new genuine Artha must find its mission in awakening the minds of the exploited people to their slavery, awakening our minds to the vision of being collectively in control of the destiny of the local economy and awakening our hearts to the countless revolutionary struggles to seize control of their local economy from the hands of the exploiters.

From this vision comes PROUT mission for Psycho Economics. Shrii Sarkar defines it as follows,

“Psycho-economy has two branches. The first branch endeavours to eradicate exploitative and unjust economic practices, behaviours and structures. It will counter all economic and psycho-economic exploitation and make people aware of how capitalists, in their singular or collective roles, exploit society and create unhealthy, artificial demands which not only poison the mind but encourage dangerous habits detrimental to psychic sanctity and expansion. The first and foremost duty of psycho-economics is to wage a tireless fight against all degenerating and dehumanizing economic trends in society.” (“Quadri-Dimensional Economy”)

The availability of the minimum essentials of life plays a vital part not only in achieving a world family but also in the development of the personality. Countless youths are destroyed every year by the violence of adults who are traumatized by poverty. Poverty it has been found affects the brain and decreases one’s cognitive capacity. When one loses self-respect and lacks confidence, one not only loses capacity to reason, one also loses one’s conscience and hence starts down the dark road of theft, violence and addiction to drugs or alcohol. This is why the guarantee of minimum requirements is so crucial for society today. In Scandinavia, for example in the past, the purchasing capacity of the people is high and they enjoy a good standard of living. Because of this they do not face the problem of overpopulation – which is serious problem only in societies with extreme economic inequality based on extreme economic tyranny of 1% of the elites.

Finally we should note that guaranteeing the welfare of everyone will lead to the all-round welfare of society. Let us be clear as to what a real society is. It has nothing to do with nations, races, religions and other vivisections of the Cosmic Family. Nor does it have anything to do with species-ism or the exploitation and genocide of animal and plant species and the assault on the planet itself. As Shrii Sarkar so simply reminds us,

“If we take the full meaning of the term society into consideration, it will be seen that till now human beings have not been able to form a real society. If India builds a society for only Indians, Pakistan for only Pakistanis and England for only the English, then three separate societies will exist, but we cannot look upon them as the society of humanity. Because humanity is divided into groups, one society will naturally try to thrive by exploiting the vitality of others. On observation you will notice that efforts are being made to establish so-called societies in some particular part of the world, for some particular section of the people, and based on some particular “ism” or faith. A social consciousness based on such divisions lies latent in the minds of the people, whether they are Indian, Pakistani or English, so they remain absorbed in thoughts of their smaller groups. It is actually due to some external impact that social consciousness takes the form of a really all-embracing Indian, Pakistani or English consciousness. The social consciousness of an enslaved nation is never more keenly felt than when the people are at war with the dominating colonial power. After independence that consciousness is lost. Examples of antisocial fissiparous tendencies do not stop here. Even in different regions of the same country people do not live within one social group…

To what state has society effectively been reduced? I reaffirm the fact that human beings have still not been able to form a human society, and have still not learned to move with the spirit of a pilgrim. Although many small groups (motivated by self interest) work together in particular situations, not even a small fraction of their work is done with a broader social motive. By strict definition, shall we have to declare that each small family unit is a society in itself? If going ahead in mutual adjustment only out of narrow self interest or momentary self-seeking is called society, then in such a society, no provision can be made for the disabled, the diseased or the helpless, because in most cases nobody can benefit from them in any way. Hence it will not suffice to say that all people marching ahead is only a collective form of segregated psychic phenomena; for in that case there always remains the possibility of some people getting isolated from the collective. All human beings must attach themselves to others by the common bond of love, and march forward hand in hand, then only will I proclaim it a society.” (Shrii Prabhat Ranjan Sarkar, “The Spirit of Society”)

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