Saturday, January 28, 2017

Mindfulness in Political Turmoils in Todays World as in Year 2017

          It was not a routine Sunday  for Ravi an engineer working in an esteemed corporate company. He had been preparing for this day since the last 3 months. This was the only time he was going to spend after a good long 17 years with his school friends.He was excited to meet them and share his highly successful journey of 17 years.It gives you ultimate satisfaction when you are appreciated by people who know you since the time you have learned how to tie shoe laces. It was also special since he had just cracked on  an impossible deal with a Japanese company after a real stressful 3 months.
As soon as he saw his mates, he got nostalgic of the times spend in the good old days.Each one spoke about their achievements, their analysis and their journeys in the last 17 years. Ravi just couldn't believe that he was actually reconnecting with those chaps and realized that he should have met sooner before.Anyways as they sat for lunch in the afternoon, cracking jokes about their teachers and principal,the conversation shifted to the an activist turned political leader "Maku" who was in the news recently.
 Most of his Friends started making fun of "Maku" and laughing at everything, his clothes, his speech to his personal life. It was very evident to Ravi that most of his Friends were supporting the  leader of the rival party. He felt an uneasiness and uncomfortable sensation in his heart but he decided to not to get into the conversation for his own mental peace. He was happy that the discussion was shifting back to girlfriends and the time they spent on college campus. Usually this an area where most of the middle age men get highly charged up discussing about the love life,their Ex and their breakups. 
One of his Friends suddenly  passed  a comment that "Maku" must be so lousy and impotent in his college days that he must have hired people to make his wife pregnant. This was the breaking point for Ravi. He could not control the explosion in his mind. He lost his mind and said something obnoxious to his friend about his personal life.Suddenly the mood in the room became very serious .What started as a friendly conversation became a ferocious argument between friends.
Ravi lost his mind and slapped the guy who had passed the comment. He could feel the anger in him growing more as others were hurling abuses at him. He picked up an ash tray and threw at them. It hit one of his Friends and he immediately lost his consciousness . Ravi couldn't believe what he had done. Cops were called and his friend was hospitalized. Ravi was convicted and found guilty and was sentenced to 6 months of imprisonment. People who knew him told that this was the first time Ravi had ever hit anyone , got in a quarrel oreven raised his voice.
          This has become a common scenario which we have been witnessing of late, not only on news channels but also in clubs and parks.Although not all issues end up with a brawl but definitely create distances in relationships ,all in the name of politics.It is really suprising how in the last  few years people have raging emotions for politicians and political parties where they forget their own personal relationship and come out with daggers if you dare speak something about a politician or at times even their policies.
            Let us try to understand why this kind of responses from the not so agressive people or people who werent so actively following politics like Ravi.Political parties and politicians were doing the same agressive and inflammatory campaigns in the past also but they failed to invoke such reactions from people.What has changed in todays world that has led to this kinda behaviour from people globally.
One of the reasons is the frustration because of the slowing economy leading  to unemployment and on the otherside there is growing greed  and competitiveness for more and more materialistic acquisitions.One thing we have  to accept that inspite of technological advances which were supposed to ease out peoples lives,it became counterproductive and has started creating more stress and indivisuals with charged up nervous systems. Everyone seems to me too obsessed to prove  a point and rather than accepting the present moment.They live most of the times either  in the past or the unseen future.
     These gives these politicians or parties the fodder to infuse in our minds and manipulate and evoke these unbelievable responses from people.Inflammatory speeches,personal attacks and absurd illogical reasoning seems to be the norm of the day.
Mind it!It is not the fault of the politician of the day.They are speaking what  people want.The ones who are winning are better connected to the peoples wishes and desires. The problem arises when we start judging the political leader or their rival.The negativity in any political campaigns is evident and people and their relationships get dragged into these mindless conversations.People come all out ,in their leaders defense and fight for them or criticise them for simply satisfying their ego.
Politicians are successful in creating a divide amongst the mass and make use of this divide to the fullest.They can easily bring in policies which suits  to their needs and advantage.People fight for people whom they have never met or have any direct experience but start judging them and at times hating or loving them to the core.When indivisual voices become group, then a mob ,it leads to bullying serving the purpose of any politician or governing head.
What actually is the matter of concern it affects the mind of people with negativity and seeps into their relationship.This nature of judging people on basis of half truth is not only dangerous but also harmful for any nation.
Mindfulness is living in the present moment.Extensive research has shown that it has a positive effect on prefrontal lobe of the brain and enhances its function.Prefrontal lobe  is responsible for the regulation  and control of  emotions  like anger,sadness irked by amydala which is the centre of emotions.In lay mans terms, mindfulness makes you smarter and gives you a moment to think before reacting to any given situation.Mindfulness has been used extensively in many fields ranging from medicine, education,corporate world  for its benefits.
Mindfulness makes you realise the folly of getting so overattached or involved with the manipulations by politicians and media at large.When you come in the present moment you realise what judgements you are making of the politician( pre or post elections) are based on the views presented  in the media or the rival which will fuel only negative sentiments.It makes you realise that any judgement is not based on one on one conversation or direct scrutiny of the work done by the politician.
Also the next question arises if the politician has not much of work to show ,it becomes even more easier for the rival to manipulate your views about him.Practicising mindfulness also makes you realise that in a democracy what matters is the number supporting any views by the politician whether you like them or not.Anyone practising mindfulness knows views that are forced or manipulated do not last for long and has a limited life. People want to live in harmony  with each other irrespective of their desire to suceed at large.
           So being mindful of the moment makes the person respect as well as form an opinion non judgementally about people who contradict them in their self interest.Even if there is disagreement as it happens many a times,there is still an options to protest in democracy without actually having to evoke emotions of dissapointment,anger or frustration.Mindfulness practice makes it easier for you to come at terms with the turmoils of the changing political scenarios and forming opinions which are not influenced or forced by anyone.Also it gives the person a sacred pause where he decides how to react to a given situation which may not be agreeable to him.His reactions takes into consideration about the present which involves the people whom he is talking to and what relationship they are sharing.For instance he can think about protesting or writing blogs rather than fighting with people verbally or venting out the dissapointment.Overall practicing mindfulness makes you a bit selfish about mantaining the homeostasis(calmness) in your mind inspite of the political turmoils.
A mindful person knows that in democracy there may be many leaders good  or bad but the power ultimately rests with the people so why waste time in reacting !
(Disclaimer:the author does not have any affiliations to any political party and gives as neutral position as possible)


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