by Thomas Kwan.
People will look after their own interests and a natural tendency to ignore the interests of others and of society, and willing to protect themselves against other people. The reverse will be the exception until the people evolve to a soul conscious living society.
"Because of the critical stage of the world we live in we have to pay attention to the deep need for spiritual well-being beyond the existing physical, mental, and moral needs of humankind. This was already recognized in the 1960s by the Burmese U Thant (1909-1974), the third secretary-general of the United Nations, and former assistant secretary-general Robert Muller from Alsace-Lourraine in France, who reflected in the early 1980s on the place of spirituality in secular society in his inspiring book New Genesis: Shaping a Global Spirituality." (King 45).
Society is made up of individual members of its inhabitants regardless if they are citizens, permanent residences or long and short term work permit holders. As such, personal habits are in a way reflected in the culture of a society. A visitor to the country would not be able to tell if the inhabitants are citizens or foreign professionals working on a temporary basis. In order for a society to evolve into a graceful society, a change in the general consciousness of its inhabitants is required.
This change starts with the fundamental requirement of awareness. For without being aware, one could not and would not know where one is as a reference point. Awareness also helps to pin point the old programmed reaction of preconceived and prejudice concepts of outdated habits that may no more serve the needs and growth of the society.
After awareness, the next element towards a graceful society is to know that the change could and should be beneficial to the individual as well as the organization or society at large. It is only human nature to ask ‘what’s in it for me?’, ‘why should I make a change if it does not benefit me or my family?’ The third and most important step following awareness and knowledge is the self motivation and commitment to action with perseverance that eventually becomes part of the new habit over time and help to blossom a community into a graceful society.
It’s an undeniable fact that our children are our future and what kind of future will we have is determined by how the young creative minds are molded and guided. One of the historically proven ways is to schedule back the teaching of ethics and social studies into schools. Virtues and ethics education are among the many links to higher consciousness thus also leading the way towards spirituality and building a society with a soul. Sir Winston Churchill is quoted as saying: “A nation that forgets its past is doomed to repeat it,” One must learn form the past in order to be free from it.
Singapore’s Senior Minister Goh Chok Tong said “Singapore must project a new identity, one that captivates the eyes, moves the heart, stirs the soul and inspires the mind.” Today Newspaper, News section, (4), Friday November 6, 2009.
A small country whose only resource is human talents and capabilities, must provide its products and services with a soul and only then can she stay ahead of competition and continue to prosper through the ups and downs of global economic climates. In short its ‘service with a heart’ that can only come from sincerity of service for every potential customer and consumer can intuitively detect superficial front of the service provider and be turned away. Service with a heart cannot be faked but can only come when a person is aware and in touch with his/her own soul. Since society is made up of individuals then collectively they determine the soul of the society.
Robin Dunbar, professor of psychology at the University of Liverpool in the UK, asserts, “The lack of social contact, the lack of sense of community, may be the most pressing social problem of the new millennium.” (Cutler 12).
Due to globalization, the societies of the world are becoming more culturally diversified, multiracial, multi-religious and in order to try to create a homogeneous, harmonious and peaceful society, the inhabitants must evolve spiritually. Only then can the people go beyond their obvious dense differences and connect at the soul conscious level and see each other as part of the global Universal family.
With the onset of a new breed of global citizens, reflected in the ever growing numbers of ‘Indigo ‘adults and children, ‘Crystal’ and ‘Rainbow’ children, a general trend started to emerge and is becoming more prominent than ever. These are the future leaders of the world and their battle cry can be reflected but not limited to the following two quotes;
" The increase in interest on a global scale for spiritual truth to spear head global economy, ecology ......An immense spiritual hunger exist today, a deep longing for a life of personal wholeness and meaning and a society of greater justice and peace. The universal upsurge of interest in spirituality in all its different forms is the urgent call to find new ways of mindful and authentic living, and to spiritually transform our economy, politics, education, and culture." (King Cover Page).
"The stress is on unity, integrity, holism, individuality; their language often invokes 'harmony, balance, flow, integrations, Being-at-one with, centered." Heelas, Paul et al., The Spiritual Revolution. Oxford: Blackwell, 2004. (26). this study is set in a community in England. It is clear that the themes here are very similar to those invoked in the U.S., or indeed, anywhere today in the Atlantic world. (Taylor 507).
From my observation over the last ten years, I would add that this theme is also reflected in the East and this change is inevitable because of the new breed of global citizens that are slowly but surely replacing and taking over from the old guards. As Lao Tse said; ‘Nothing is permanent or forever – change is inevitable'. Hence societies all over the world are evolving as part of the Universal evolution process. To sum up in a few words, “Change is inevitable which is in line with the Universal expanding Consciousness.”