We are all witness to the development in Nepal for the past decade and the secular, federal republic democracy in action. The constant change of the leadership, especially the PM chair, and the system itself through people’s political movements have all brought us to this day. It is abundantly clear that we are making the same mistake again and again. If we had made the right choice, we would have seen positive results, and Nepal would be on the path to progress. So, what exactly went wrong, and what is the right thing to do?
Let me just narrate you a story from our “shastra.” This one is a famous one from Samveda, and mentioned in Chandpgya Upanishad. As you must be aware that Vedas are the eternal knowledge and Upanishads are the conclusive and summary explanations of the difficult Vedas. In Chandogya Upanishad, there is a story of Svetaketu, who is a son of Rishi Uddalaka. Svetaketu was a very bright boy and after learning from his father until 12 years of age, he is sent to learn in a Gurukul of Rishi Gautama for formal Vedic training. After 12 years, he completes his education and returns home after his graduation. Being a smart man and a graduate of Vedic knowledge, he feels really proud of his achievements. He even walks with swag. Not even the Bollywood nepotism sardar Salman Khan would be able to show such swag.
Rishi Uddalaka sees the arrogance of his learned son. So, to put him in his place, he asked a simple question. “Son, did you learn in your studies about that one thing, one knowledge by knowing which you know everything?” The song gets stumped. Svetaketu has no such knowledge. The father tells him, just like once you gain knowledge of clay, you can understand everything made of clay, and when you understand gold, you know about everything made of gold. There is such a knowledge. So, he is sent back to gain that knowledge.
So, here lies an important knowledge for us. We have to know the core character of everything around us. It could be an individual, a society, a nation, a leader, a political party, or this world, or even this creation. Once we find the essential character of any of these, we can make the right decision.
Now, let us look at the pandemic crisis in Nepal. After locking people down for three months, the problem became a crisis. Enough is enough movement started after the independent youth decided to demonstrate their displeasure. The question is: Why would you expect anything else to happen? For this, we have to consider the “truth” about the current political leaders and the parties. Who are they and who do they follow? How did they get in power?
When we look at them, this idea of Mao or Marx or parliamentarian system, they are all foreign. They have no relation to our culture, history, or society. So trying to integrate a concept from a foreign culture in Nepal would be akin to choosing to make rice paddies in the Saudi deserts. This is a very important point we need to ponder. Second, about the party, they are authoritarian by nature, so free speech is not in their character. Hence independent youth marching with Enough is Enough slogans will get police brutality, while student union, who are copying the independent youth for political purpose go scot-free.
How did they get into power? We all know they have had blessings from India (remember the Maoists insurgency?), and Christians (remember the Holy Wine). Also, remember the N-Cell corruption of giving Rs. 10 Arba to the top three political parties to fight the election. So, they have stolen money from Nepal’s treasury to steal the election from us. Okay, one more important point. Think about the Chitwan election. Was this election not stolen? Were the ballot not torn when they sensed they were going to lost? Did not all the parties agree to give Renu Dahal the Mayorship? Was this not support of nepotism and stealing of election? So, why did we even think and expect for once that they would work in favor of the people and the nation? And it should be amply clear to all observant people by the subsequent cases such as the attacks on Rabi Lamichhane and Gyanendra Shahi .
So, the current system of Nepal has no reasonable chance of succeeding by any imagination. It would be like bringing home a cat as a pet and then expect it to guard the home, bark and wag its tail. Another example would be like a scenario where you expect an engineer to go to perform an operation. Only in case of Nepal, we send a beggar from the street to perform heart surgery.
So, what is the way to know the truth? The answer is also in our Vedic texts. At this point, just as an aside, let me remind you that all religions have a core text for their followers. But in the case of Vedic Eternal knowledge, we do have not a book but a whole library, as acknowledged by a great scholar like David Fraley. So, to make the right decision, we need to be able to see the truth.That means, we have to be able to distinguish between the illusion and the reality. As you know, we have heard sometimes while growing up that this Samsara is an illusion. It means both our body and the mind are an illusion, but our soul is eternal. Understanding the soul is a long process and requires dedication and learning for many years. So, the best way to help us make the right decisions there are two directive instructions: 1) Love all serve all. 2) Help ever hurt never.
Since we do not have time to study the whole library of knowledge, the main lessons have been simplified into these two sentences. Love all serve all means we have to see that the whole world is a part of us and we are united and dependent, so we need to love all, and service to others is the highest act of worship. Second, help ever hurt never tells us never to practice violence against other beings. We should be helping those around us and this planet itself, and never in our life, we should indulge in thoughts, words, and action that harms other beings.
What it means is that if our decision is selfish, then it is not the right one. If our thoughts, words, and decisions spread love for other beings and help them, then we are making the right decisions. If our thoughts, words, and deeds hurt others then that is not right. So, in short, we should practice loving, helping, and serving everyone around us, especially if they are people who are suffering. In the same manner, we should do nothing that hurts ourselves or any other beings and the planet itself.
So, if you support those who are working opposite to these two principles, then we are making wrong choices. So, when we make political decisions, like voting, electing the wrong people will always bring terrible results for all of us.
All this will be possible if we follow the first principle of our Vedic knowledge. Live in truth, and support those who live in truth.