A large section of us feels attached to our fellow human beings and it is obvious that we get affected by each other’s miseries or happiness and we feel compassionate about each other.
It is because we all are attached by a single source i.e. Lord Krishna who is the supreme personality of Godhead & due to this we feel compassion for the fellow human beings.
But this compassion is covered by our materialistic desires which most of the time results in personal benefits, interest, and greed over humanity. This greed for economic development and personal development has no place for compassion today.
This has resulted in global warming, the killing of innocent animals at slaughterhouses, unhealthy working environment in factories, chemical abuses in agriculture, and the result are there in the form of the disease, deaths, and growing restlessness among the society.
Despite their continuous efforts at the united nations and the promotion of atheistic culture in communist countries, we have seen that their planning and vision to bring prosperity and happiness in the lives of their citizens have completely devastated.
The promotion of consumerism, materialism, nationalism, marxism has taken away the peace of mind of people and have engaged them in the vicious cycle of many ‘isms’. The ordinary population is now engaged in fighting a war for someone else.
In the absence of real purpose of life i.e. “simple living high thinking”, we have been pushed to live an artificial life created with artificial desires of consumerism. A few years back most of our population were farmers and had plenty of food in the form of grains, milk, ghee, and livestock of animals, all of this made us real rich and happy. But after the industrial revolution, we’ve been told that buying a Nirma Super Powder and Washing machines will bring happiness, going to the moon and creating space stations, cars, and industry development being referred to as helping the humanity while the real problems like – Disease, old age, Death were pushed back to the corners as scientists were unbaled to find any solutions to these real problems.
In the last few decades due to this many farmers have left agriculture and have adopted for the hellish city life as they have been told that manufacturing of nuts and bolts is more important than producing the food. That tractors are a better option than a bull based energy, that pesticides, chemical-based fertilizers will help in larger production but what happened? Today we are seeing more farmer suicides, more cancer cases in India, and unrecoverable damages to the fertile land.
The television, Cinema, advertisements have agitated the minds of people. Now most among us have turned into maniacs chasing unrealistic dreams of stardom, fame, and money; while forgetting that real happiness has nothing to do with all these so-called pleasures which are borne due to the sense perception.
In such conditions where people are chasing money to satisfy their lust talking about humanity and humanitarianism is of no use unless we accept the higher teaching of Bhagavad Gita. Bhagavad Gita a discourse that happened between Supreme Personality Krsna & Demi-God Sun millions of years back and was re-introduced to the world through Arjuna just five thousand years back during the Mahabharat War in the holy land of Kurukshetra
Lord Krishna’s vision is much wider and inclusive in terms of being compassionate towards every living entity Lord Krishna says in Bhagavad Gita 15. 7
ममैवांशो जीवलोके जीवभूत: सनातन: ।
मन:षष्ठानीन्द्रियाणि प्रकृतिस्थानि कर्षति ॥
mamaivāṁśo jīva-loke jīva-bhūtaḥ sanātanaḥ
manaḥ-ṣaṣṭhānīndriyāṇi prakṛti-sthāni karṣati
“The living entities in this conditioned world are My eternal fragmental parts. Due to conditioned life, they are struggling very hard with the six senses, which include the mind.” BG 15.7
In the above verses, the word “mamaivāṁśo” is very important. Here Supreme Personality of Godhead Lord Krishna confirms that Living entities i.e. Human -animals – trees every jiva is his eternal fragmental part.
And Krsna also informs that all the living entities are struggling very hard with six senses which includes the mind. So the real humanitarian work can only be started when we first recognize the real problems of our lives. Once we identify the real problems we can ponder over the solutions.
Right now modern society has completely ignored the real problems of life and is only focusing on bodily comforts. It is like putting great effort into saving the shirt(dress) of a sinking man. In the absence of the real teachers’ (Brahmins) the society is being led by a blind man who is leading other blind men.
The real problem is that all living entities have to suffer from four types of miseries- Birth – Old Age – Disease & Death. So the message of Krsna is to understand that our efforts of being happy and our efforts of being helping others will remain unfruitful because we are desiring so in the wrong place.
We may help a beggar and relive him from his miseries for some moment or maybe for some days but still, he is going to get the disease, still, he will grow old and ultimately die. We may put a patient on a ventilator, by injections and vaccines we may prolong our lives for some moment, days but death will ultimately destroy whatever we have achieved. Or maybe some other bigger problems like corona will come and collapse our system of which we are so proud of.
Modern science and society have damaged the idea of humanitarianism by accepting death as normal, by accepting old age as normal by accepting disease as a normal way of life. Disease like COVID- 19 are always there to push science and society to isolated helpless corners.
It is because they have accepted the untruth. They considered that body is everything, that sense gratification is the ultimate purpose of life, that there is nothing beyond what their material senses can perceive. This idea of narrow development which related to only sense gratification is the greatest barrier for humanitarianism.
The saddest factor is that this is what is taught in every school, they teach how to be successful at every cost. How to maintain the body and sense gratification. So in current material education, there is no scope of humanitarianism since it is based only on satisfied once senses.
In Divine Varanashrma Dharma it was achieved easily by training them in Vedic Education. Every class – Brahmin – Sudra (Service provider) – Women, Vaishya (Business class) & Kshatriya ( The Warriors administration and defense) each one of them had a great & equal opportunity to attain the highest goal of life and relieve themselves and others from the repetitive sufferings birth after birth
This equal opportunity is confirmed by Lord Krsna in Bhagavad Gita 9.32
O son of Pṛthā, those who take shelter in Me, though they be of lower birth – women, vaiśyas [merchants] and śūdras [workers] – can attain the supreme destination.
The very first thing that we need to understand is our position in this universe. Unless and until we properly perform our duties we can’t be happy Lord Krsna says in Bhagavad Gita 3. 12
इष्टान्भोगान्हि वो देवा दास्यन्ते यज्ञभाविताः ।
तैर्दत्तानप्रदायैभ्यो यो भुङ्क्ते स्तेन एव सः ॥ १२ ॥
iṣṭān bhogān hi vo devā
tair dattān apradāyaibhyo
yo bhuṅkte stena eva saḥ
In this verse, Lord Krsna says that all the necessities of life food, air, rain, river, water, glaciers are maintained by his authorized representative Demi-Gods But one who possesses such gifts without offering them to the demigods in return is certainly a thief.
And a thief has to suffer in Jail and if a thief expects happiness in the jail then it should be considered foolishness. This world is similar to a prison-house Krsna confirms in 8.15 that this world is दु:खालयमशाश्वतम् a place of full of miseries and temporary. One who understands this situation he first has to free himself and then liberate others as well
This system of sacrifice to Demi-God is authorized by the Supreme Personality of Godhead Lord Krsna himself. They are the supplying agents on behalf of Lord Vishnu.
Further for the welfare of people, Lord Vishnu explains in the BG 5.29 that
भोक्तारं यज्ञतपसां सर्वलोकमहेश्वरम् ।
सुहृदं सर्वभूतानां ज्ञात्वा मां शान्तिमृच्छति ॥ २९ ॥
jñātvā māṁ śāntim ṛcchati
He is the ultimate beneficiary of all sacrifices and austerities and one who knows this who is in full Krsna consciousness he attains peace from the pangs of all material miseries.
Such a person understands that we cannot manufacture anything, even not a single piece of grain by ourselves or by so-called scientific development. Hence the devotee of Lord Krsna understands the value of everything and he doesn’t collect things for his sense gratification as he knows that if he does so he will be considered a thief. So by controlling his sense and living with minimum comforts of life he saves resources for other living entities and in such a way he shows real humanitarianism which is not limited up to human beings but also inclusive for the other living entities
That is why a great Vaishnava Saint Narsinh Mehta said
वैष्णव जन तो तेने कहिये
जे पीड परायी जाणे रे ।
पर दुःखे उपकार करे तो ये
मन अभिमान न आणे रे ॥
vaiṣṇava jana to tene kahiye
je pīḍa parāyī jāṇe re,
para duḥkhe upakāra kare to ye
mana abhimāna na āṇe re
One who is a devotee of Lord Krsna he understands the pain of others
A devotee of Lord Vishnu always helps those who are in miseries but still, he remains very humble. So these are the qualities one develops automatically if he becomes the devotee of Lord Vishnu — He is always “Para Dukhe Dukhi ” Always become sad by seeing another person in trouble.
The word ‘pain’ here just not limited to this body but applies for the soul which is although a part and parcel of Lord Krsna/Vishnu. But it is living in a miserable condition due to its contamination with the association of this material energy have forgotten its relationship with the supreme personality of Godhead Krishna who is maintainer and sustainer of every living entity.
To save the living entity from this cycle miseries birth after birth a Krsna consciousness person helps the hungry person by giving him Krsna Parsadam. Srila Prabhupada founder acharya of International Society of Krsna Consciousness once said that no one should remain hungry in the ten meal of radius of a temple. When someone eats Parsadam which is offered to Lord Krsna along with Hare Krishna Kirtan he immediately becomes free from the threefold of miseries (Aadi Bhotik, Aadi Devik, & Aadi Adhytamik )
So a hungry person should be given Parsadam which is offered to Lord Krsna it will not only help his present body but will also purify his soul. And at the right time, he will be free from the cycle of birth and death and will go back to Godhead, back to Lord Krsna. This is a real humanitarian effort to free a suffering living being from the clutches of repetitive death and birth
The same goes for treating the body of a patient in Ayurveda it is called holistic approach this beyond the understanding of the materialistic person, the presiding deity of Ayurveda is Lord Dhanvantri is an incarnation of Lord Vishnu. In Ayurveda, our body is considered a machine (Yantra ) through which we can revive our relationship with Lord Krsna. So in ancient times, Ayurveda means to treat both body and soul. The practitioner will first pray to Lord Vishnu & and then give medicine to the ailing person.
In this way, everyone saw a bigger picture beyond this body and everyone understood that they are not the controller. They knew that Lord Vishnu resides in everyone’s heart hence they never committed any harm to them or never tried to snatch away their rights of the living.
But in Kaliyuga in modern times we see the opposite, there is no mercy in the heart of anyone. They talk about equality and non -violence but they kill innocent animals for their tongue taste and think that only they have a right of living, they sometimes help humans and make it a big show-off in front of the public. One who is not Krsna consciousness is very much puffed by supplying some food and clothing to a poor man, or by making hospitals we think that we have become great humanitarians in spite they are nothing but killing machines through their act, factories, slaughterhouses and demonic methods of agricultures which produces cancer in everyone’s body.
These people are called demons (Asura) in Bhagavad Gita there is a verse which recognizes demons among us. They can act as if they are big humanitarians but in reality, they are demonic Please see BG 16.13-15
ईश्वरोऽहमहं भोगी सिद्धोऽहं बलवान्सुखी ॥ १४ ॥
आढ्योऽभिजनवानस्मि कोऽन्योऽस्ति सदृशो मया ।
यक्ष्ये दास्यामि मोदिष्य इत्यज्ञानविमोहिता: ॥ १५ ॥
The demoniac person thinks: “So much wealth do I have today, and I will gain more according to my schemes. So much is mine now, and it will increase in the future, more and more. He is my enemy, and I have killed him, and my other enemies will also be killed. I am the lord of everything. I am the enjoyer. I am perfect, powerful, and happy. I am the richest man, surrounded by aristocratic relatives. There is none so powerful and happy as I am. I shall perform sacrifices, I shall give some charity, and thus I shall rejoice.” In this way, such persons are deluded by ignorance.
The last line is very important यक्ष्ये दास्यामि मोदिष्य इत्यज्ञानविमोहिता: I shall perform sacrifices, I shall give some charity, and thus I shall rejoice.”
A person who not Krsna consciousness and considers himself God or the controller of the situation may appear to be doing some charity, performing some sacrifices (Yajna ) but actually, his intentions are only for his joyfulness.
The idea of humanitarianism in Krsna consciousness is to introduce Lord Krishna into the lives of people so that they can be eternally free from disease, old age, poverty, and death and never has to face it again by attaining the Supreme Planet of Gauloka Dham of Lord Krsna.
The easiest way of doing this is to engage living entities in the chanting of Mahamantra Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna Hare Hare, Hare Ram Hare Ram Ram Ram Hare Hare.