It is human nature to be attracted to something we’re clearly instructed not to go near.
A child walks into the kitchen, minding his or her own business, looking around, completely oblivious of the piping hot dal lying on the table, right up until you tell him to not touch it. He knows that something dangerous now exists in the vicinity. That doesn’t necessarily make him lunge at it but it rouses his interest, and will make him want to inspect it. This isn’t about right or wrong. It’s about instilling the knowledge of things and more importantly, fear, from a very, very young age.
Children don’t need to be taught fear. Its existence doesn’t need to be reinforced to them. They already know fear. That’s why they cry.
Drawing a parallel from this, are people similarly attracted and intrigued by what has been deemed wrong, immoral, simply out-of-bounds? The position of the line between right and wrong is highly subjective and the line itself is often blurred. However, it couldn’t be any more important than it is in today’s day and age.
A newspaper I read declared 2014 the year of hackers after so many cyber scandals have rocked the world this year. If you’ve been paying attention to the news these past couple of years, you would agree with me when I say that a lot of people, powerful and many times just plain bad people, don’t really give a damn about right and wrong. I’m not talking only of things like cyber scandals, and uprisings like the one in Syria and Libya but also of more sensitive issues like the issue of gay rights all over the world, and how completely unmanly men defile women every single day.
I don’t know about you guys but reading or hearing about crap like this day in and day out really angers me.
To the uninitiated, there are a lot of things in the world that may seem perfect. There are a lot of systems in place in administrations and governments and organisations all over the world and it is only after scrutinising the details can one pick out the shortcomings.
One such system has to be changed immediately if we are to ever get traction on changing things. This system is fundamental to life and begins almost as soon as we are born. It is the system of education.
Education and learning begins at home, right from birth. We are constantly learning from our parents, grandparents, uncles, aunts, extended family, relatives, friends, even from complete strangers on the street. This system cannot possibly be perfected because to teach what must ideally be taught, the teacher should have the perfect understanding of the same, along with a lot of other personality traits, the combination of which is extremely difficult to find outside characters in books and movies. There obviously are very, very rare exceptions but the operative words here are ‘very’, ‘very’ and ‘rare’.
What I’m trying to say is that concepts like right and wrong, and socially relevant concepts like equality not just between communities, cultures, races and even species but even between the two sexes, are taught from birth and the opinions of the teacher heavily impact the teaching given. This, obviously, shapes individuals and who they become. It is very irksome to think that a small little lesson given when a child is maybe five or ten or fifteen, goes on to rip their mind apart, makes them completely emotionless and creates the disturbed criminals that we are all familiar with.
The people who have the nerve to do such terrible things, need some perspective in life. No, not the ‘what is doing something like this going to get you’ kind of perspective. They’ve probably been through that kind of perspective a hundred times. They need some real perspective. And it’s not just the thieves, robbers, terrorists, molesters, rapists and murderers that need this. There are others out there who are fighting over seemingly important stuff but really end up looking like a bunch of kids fighting over who gets to kick a sandcastle on the beach, a sandcastle that wasn’t even made by them.
Take wars, for example. You’re fighting with weapons and machines that hardly challenge your physical might, against an enemy that’s most likely doing the same, over maybe land that’s not yours for the taking in the first place, thinking that you’re doing the ‘right thing for your nation’ or by defeating the enemy you did a favour to the world.
Pride, obviously plays a big role in all of this. Whether it’s about wanting to capture more land, more money or more power, or about refusing to help certain people or taking help from certain people in times of crisis. In many situations, pride eclipses the truth and facts.
The basic idea is that wherever you started from, whatever you had in the beginning, was given to you, you inherited it. We inherited the earth, we didn’t win it. It isn’t ours. It never was and it never will be. We need to start taking this little fact into consideration. All of us need to look at things differently.