Bigotry in the form of religion, caste, creed, color and gender is the debilitating poison that has eaten away our society over a prolonged period, perforating the foundation of social structures across different parts of world. The very basic right of leading a life with minimum dignity has been denied on the basis of these human created differences. The framework of division of work specified in old systems, which never espoused the theory of untouchables and intolerance, started decaying almost simultaneously in almost all countries and societies during the middle ages (around from 10th to 16th century) – marked as the black age. It does continue till today in many parts of India and world in some form or other.
With the breakdown of colonial rules in the west, there has been a significant change to consider a human as a person before anything – tolerance and respect for individual self being of utmost importance. It pains us to see that till today a few self-styled god men consider themselves more equal than others and mark fellow people as sinners creating smokescreens obscuring the truth and dictating terms of how should they change their beliefs and/or their destiny. These have turned into ugly wars and battles to satisfy the interest of few with huge collateral damages of loss of common human lives for no fault of theirs.
For our society to prosper and for peace to prevail on earth, we need to be more tolerant than yesterday and there can’t be any kind of society-created classification other than natural ones. Instead of trying to advocate that one way is better than others, there is an urgent need to adopt “ So many opinions, that many paths”, as propounded by real wise men like Sri Ramakrishna. Peace and harmony and not intolerance and acrimony need to be the first steps towards the future.