Unfortunately, Delhi has nowadays become a live example of being a virtual test ground for Gaia and Maia hypotheses, which are very much under conspicuous and violative modes of operation. As Gaia points to pollution of exterior and interior spaces of Delhi, Maia touches upon the collision between its lawyers and policemen.
Both Gaia and Maia propositions are similar in working but they vary in their respective ethe. The former pertains to interdependence between organic life and inorganic matter whereas the latter performs the same role but between socioeconomic and political realm (polity in short) and psychospiritual aspects of human behaviour, termed as psychospiritism. Arbitrary handling of these two natural codes has resulted in serious repercussions in terms of untold social fears and human anxieties in the national capital.
James Lovelock propounded in the 1960s about the inseparable interrelatedness and mutual dependence between organic life and inorganic matter in his Gaia (Mother Nature after Greek mythological goddess of all life forms) theory. The Great Buddha also enunciated ‘Pratityasamutpada’ (dependent origination) in the 6th century BC itself, explaining that every life and every matter are dependent upon the existence of each other.
If there is water (inorganic), there is life (organic). If there is no water, there is no life. Wild animals thrive provided there is a jungle and its wilderness but they go extinct if they are deprived of their wild habitat. These few examples show that the existence and flourishing of every life form on our planet rely on other things like water and air for survival. If unsustainable methods of industrialisation consume enormous amounts of water for its production or manufacturing, the scarcity of water will affect humans, their crops and livestock adversely.
Balance is Key
Further, absence of automation will make life hard for the people. Contrarily, excessive automation will render a large number of people unemployed, thus driving them to struggle for livelihood. If we take our own body for example, we see that excess or absence of some nutrients causes diseases. All these illustrations point out that life will be secure if and only if the surrounding environmental conditions stay in balance.
If there is safe water, humans exist, otherwise not. Correspondingly, if there is inorganic oxygen, there exists the organic human. If there is a dearth of oxygen due to polluted air, there arises a threat to human survival. This is the Gaia wrath of Delhi and other places because the breach in interdependence has already widened between the environment and people.
Polity and Psychospiritism
As stated earlier, Maia (Roman goddess of growth) hypothesis is just akin to the same Gaian model of inevitable interrelationship but manoeuvres between polity and psychospiritism. Here, spirituality completely differs from religion in the sense that the former embodies self or individual nature of caring, loving, helping etc., while the latter is associated with group behaviour as regards organised beliefs and customs.
Any incongruence between the two domains of polity and psychospiritism manifests itself as disharmony in social as well as human well-beings. If the polity’s policies, decisions or procedures are not conducive to the wellness of individuals; social disturbances are bound to surface in the guise of human disaffection and disgruntlement. Likewise, when human aggression disturbs the functioning of socioeconomic and political institutions, collective harmony will again become the casualty.
On one side, socioeconomic and political governance aims at maintaining stable public peace and order, economic growth, social equality, national unity and integrity etc, through congenial administration whereas on the other side, psychospiritual components comprising positive and constructive attitudes, camaraderie, self-esteem, optimism, mutual trust, empathy, humanitarian outlook, self-control etc., strive for fraternity through interpersonal understanding and cooperation.
Eclipse of Peace
Therefore, the Delhi instance of law and order concern is precisely neither that of lawyers nor that of police but certainly that of invisible cankerous development of psychospiritual shortcomings, saturated with aggressiveness, hostility, disunity, immortality, insensitivity and so on, commensurate with the corresponding degree of apathy on the part of polity. All these factors have culminated to eclipse the social peace and economic normalcy. Existential crises arise as and when the interdependence is obscured by schism between organic life from inorganic matter. Social hassles also emerge if the establishments of polity don’t take human sensibilities into consideration and vice versa.
As such, Indian polity can be considered in a way as a system of management, which enforces the law of the land to safeguard and fortify the ideals of the nation whereas psychospiritism on the part of citizens is like a form of art that beautifies the nationhood with compatibility and tranquillity. Both in tandem are sine qua non for prevention and healing of the maladies that spurt due to vagaries of polity management as well as failings in the art of psychospiritism, either in a potential or practical manner.
Nature and forms of social structure, urbanisation, digital economy etc, go on varying with the passage of time and advent of novel technologies and polity management cannot effectively and cordially cope with these changes unless it imbibes and banks upon the human element of psychospiritism. Accordingly, in India, we need to reverse the pendulum of importance that has mostly swung towards polity management from the side of psychospiritism, hence there occurs blatant aberrations frequently, one after the other, be it internal security hitches or disappointing worries of economic growth.
Many of our past and current experiences emphasise the urgency to pay heed to and apply the principles of Maia for an orderly and harmonious social living. And for a hassle-free natural liveability in Delhi and around, it is again the mantra of Gaia that alone holds the key.
(The author is former DG Cyber Crimes, Bhopal)