Religion and Technology – A Deadly Combination
Responding to a question on the terrorist attacks in New Zealand and Sri Lanka, Sadhguru speaks about what we can do to promote sustainable peace on the planet.
No Compromise for GodSadhguru: Essentially, we are born as life on this planet; rest of the things are taught to us. We have all become many things which we are not. This is what we need to fix right now in the world – who are we? We have to stop teaching all this stuff which makes us something other than human beings. We must understand, evil has always been inflicted only by one man upon another man, never by some other forces.
No hand jumped out of the sky and did any evil to anybody ever in the history of humanity. It’s always one person doing something horrible to another person. This could be done for economic reasons, because of egoistic reasons, because of wealth, property, and so many things. But when people believe that they are fighting for their Gods, there is no compromise. This what we need to understand.
You cannot compromise when you are fighting for your God. If it’s property, I can compromise. But I'm fighting for something about which there is no question of compromise. We must understand the moment you believe something absolutely, and I believe something else, it's just a question of time when we are going to kill each other.
Maybe we will or maybe our children will or maybe their children will, but it's bound to happen. When you believe something, it means just this: what you do not know, you assume and you concretize this assumption in your minds and you gather numbers. The moment you assume and you gather a thousand people who assume the same things, and I assume something and I gather 10,000 people who assume the same thing, a clash is inevitable, believe me.
Making Religion a Personal Pursuit
When terrible events like this happen, everybody feels strongly about it for a few days, then they will go about their normal business. All this talk about just creating a little bit of peace here and there is not a solution. One fundamental thing we should do in the next twenty-five years, if we are really concerned about the future of the world, is to establish that your religion is your personal pursuit, do whatever you want but it cannot be a national or global agenda.
This must be set one hundred per cent. If we don't do this, we are not looking at just a few churches exploding or somebody shooting in the mosque or something else. You could have nations exploding into bits, because the day of the sword is over. Now, it is the day of a deadly button which can do things that you cannot imagine. A large part of humanity can go into bits because that is the kind of empowerment we have in terms of technology. It is not like you will take your sword and kill a hundred people. You are going to just take away millions at a time.
Using Technology to Transform the World
This same technological advancement has made it possible for us to sit here today and talk to the entire world – 57 percent of the world has access to the internet. About 12 years ago, I was talking to someone in the United States who is some kind of an expert on internet affairs. I just asked, “What are people looking for? For hours on end they are on this net.” He very casually said, “Sadhguru, about 70 percent is pornography.” I didn't want to believe him. I said, “This is not possible. It can’t be 70 percent.” But then I checked with a few other people, and everybody said 70 percent of data was pornography.
And they tell me, every year, some 1.2 million children, below 15 years of age, are being sold on the internet. What's wrong with us? I’m saying when such a tremendous tool of technology comes to us, we want to sell our children? Is this how we use it? We want to change this. That is why I am loud in the last 10 years, out on the internet. We have to counter this type of content and offer an alternative.
Some years ago, I was just walking in Bangalore city. Some 12-13 year old boys came running and said, “Hey, Sadhguru, Sadhguru!” I said, “Hey! You idiots, how do you know who I am?” They said, “We watch your videos, Sadhguru.” I said, “What? Your mothers must be forcing you to watch my videos.” They said, “No, in our class all of us are watching your videos.” I really enquired and I find in every school I go to, at least 20 to 30 percent of the children are watching our videos. I'm telling you when I was 15, nobody could ever get me to watch a spiritual video, all right? No way.
Technology has made it possible for us today to influence minds and transform the world. It is just that are we committed to making it happen?
This is our time on this planet, let us make this the best time ever for Humanity. We are a highly empowered generation, it’s time we use this towards the wellbeing for all. Let us make it happen.
Editor’s Note: A version of this article was originally published on Swarajya.