Author Topic: 21st CENTURY AND HUMAN HAPPINESS  (Read 2924 times)

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Offline Waziri

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« on: January 30, 2004, 12:30:00 PM »

Oh me Oh life of the questions of these recurring
Of the endless trend of the hopeless
Of cities filled with the foolish
What is amid thee oh me oh life!

Whit Whitman, American Poet

It is true that the ultimate thing in human life is nothing more than peace and happiness. Even in western philosophy, evil is understood to mean nothing more than that thing which brings agony or displeasure and as such the struggle in life should mean a struggle to conquer evil. Much debate is on since time immemorial as which is the best way in life for man to achieve this happiness. There were different philosophers prescribing different methods at different intervals of human history; those as prescribed by religious institutions and the once by their antagonist.

The enlightenment that happened in the 18th century Europe proved the consolidation of one of the above systems: that of the antagonists of the religious institutions.

I think it wouldn't be wrong to believe that Karl Marx was the very first man who re-wrote history based on Darwin's theory of evolution and concluded that the history of man is nothing more than the history of a creature who is trying to survive. That since man is only a product of chances; his life is nothing more than the service to the flesh. Let him eat his fill, drink to brink, accumulate wealth, have sex, do this and do that according to the cravings of his hearts. He has no obligations, no responsibilities but rights and liberties. His organization as gregarious should not be more than meeting in order to come up with a structure that satisfies the need of the flesh only; It is only that thing that can be seen that should deserve attention. This brought about the notion of material description of the world we live in.

Since then this understanding evolved the two economic theories known as capitalism and socialism. The theories had in the last two centuries profound influence over mankind. The index of national development everywhere is defined in the light of the kind of food people eat; mortality rate, life expectancy and all other things. That even crisis is explained only in the light of poverty. It tries by all possible means to prove to people of the world that poverty is the only problem of mankind and at individual level only economic activity that should be the occupation of human mind.

Socialism as we all know failed. Not of course because it doesn't fit man but because some ppl wanted it crumbled and so we saw its own proponent lynching it. Michael Gorvachev did not have peace until he saw how he got the entire system down.

We are today left with capitalism, which is nothing different from the other sister-theory except perhaps in form and structure. But the goal is the same: material description of the universe we live in.

But yet at the turn of the century this system is yet to satisfy the cravings of mankind as earlier thought. We find that in America, where the system is most entrenched, people are always complaining bout the subjugation they suffer from, by this system, which occupy them only with the struggle to feed and survive. They are beginning to read meaning to life than what this system offers.
When Maria the mother of the one time Broadway Star, Freddie Prinze, wrote the account of what made him commit suicide in 1977 she concluded thus:
"Freddie had come to the Hollywood with a dream he believed about to come true. But in Hollywood he stopped being a person and became as he put it - a piece of "merchandise". He was offered a fortune to endorse lunch boxes bearing his trademark quip...Freddie the product had replaced Freddie the person."
She finished by asking a rhetorical question:
.... Was all this what killed Freddie?. Was it that the dollar was more important than the human being with feelings and emotions? Was the image more important than the real person? .... If this is the case, then we live in a society suffering from spiritual malnutrition."

This dissatisfaction is seen in many individuals who have dedicated their lives in the service to the flesh. These individuals among the liveliest are celebrities. I think I cannot remember how often I heard Michael Jackson saying he is not happy in spite of the wealth, the attention and the love he has garnered.

To summarize the dilemma of mankind in relation to happiness at the 21st century this Austrian friend of ours has this to say:

"Today we have higher buildings and wider highways, but shorter temperaments and narrower points of view
We spend more, but enjoy less.
We have bigger houses, but smaller families
We have more compromises, but less time.
We have more knowledge, but less judgment
We have more medicines, but less health.
We have multiplied our possessions, but reduced our values
We talk much, we love only a little, and we hate too much.
We reached the Moon and came back, but we find it troublesome to cross our own street and meet our neighbors.
We have conquered the outer space, but not our inner space.
We have higher income, but fewer morals....
These are times with more liberty, but less joy....
With much more food, but less nutrition....
These are days in which two salaries get home, but divorces increase.
These are times of finer houses, but more broken homes...."

Ok dear forumnites, Capitalism has failed man again and as such I believe we should start thinking on a new system that will serve our needs today.

Maybe the one that brings the indices of national development to not only poverty but peace and stability in marriage and other things regarding social relation, and most importantly the spirit of man.

Maybe our new table after reading mortality rate, poverty rate, life expectancy etc should also read items like contentment, divorce rate anti-social behaviors etc.

Or K-onliners what d u say?

Offline EMTL

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« Reply #1 on: February 10, 2004, 02:21:13 PM »
Assalamu alaikum,
Our contemporary problems are not un-solvable. The solutions will certainly evolve when every one ponders at their purpose of creation by AlMighty Allah (SW) and then work out their 'angle of deviations' from the teachings contained in the Holy Book and Sunnah of Nabiy (SAW).

Peace and happiness will continue to elude whoever preponderates the short, unpredictable and deceitful life of this world over the Eternal life., etc. etc. May Allah (SWT) continue to guide us onto the rightous path.

Islam means Peace, teaches peace, establishes peace!
In the Affairs of People Fear Allah (SWT). In the Matters Relating to Allah (SWT) Do not be Afraid of Anybody. Ibn Katthab (RA).

Offline JiboNura

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« Reply #2 on: February 13, 2004, 02:25:07 PM »


It is true that the world economies are in serious dangers. Karl Max being the pioneer and founding father of Capitalism- is the cause of all these problems of materialism. Whereas Adams Smith who belonged ?to his school of thought could not offer any substantial explanation to defend his claims on the "invisible hand". That is emphasizing on capital more than any of the factors of production viz-a-viz land, labour and enterpreneurship . That's why Ricardo had to strongly disagree by finding an alternative to their thoughts - the Ricardonian theory which is emphasizing on labour than capital is a pointer to the merchantalistic view.

Socialism on the other hand has something to do with the utilisation of public properties by the states. This too is not with a clean hand since there is class favouritism in it where the control is solely left with the state machineries who dominate the helm of affairs just to satisfy their personal cravings. ?

For instance, to butress your argument, let's take Nigeria as a case study where at a point in time we had to go on strong debate with our Prof. of economics, Mike Kwanashie who raised a question on the situation of our economy. Prof. and us agreed that Nigeria's economy is neither socialist nor capitalist. We could only agree that it is in transition . You can see that Waziri there is no cause for alarm with your ?deductive as well as inductive analysis. I wholeheartedly agree with you on this view.


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