Wednesday 30 January 2013

Author(s): Bharat Lal Seth, Soma Basu

  • I think it is the faith only

    I think it is the faith only that keeps people making a beeline to Sangam and it is sheer faith that saves them from bacterial infections. The health of Ganga is pitiable and with the added muck of millions it is bound to go from bad to worse. We can only say Jai Gange. But is time that the message about keeping the rivers clean is conveyed to the masses through all types of media-else the future generations will have rivers of poop only.

    Posted by: Anonymous | 3 years ago | Reply
  • The answer to the question:

    The answer to the question: Can Faith Heal? is most certainly yes. In offering my comments on ÔÇ£Hindu Philosophy & Environmental PollutionÔÇØ, I had offered a much better explanation than ÔÇ£peer-reviewed scientific journal PLoS One in October 2012, which argues that despite cold weather, endless noise, poor food and risk of disease, devotees who attend such events and participate in collective rites have higher levels of mental and physical wellbeing. Maybe, the study holds the answer to Mark TwainÔÇÖs quest.ÔÇØ My comment was: ÔÇ£I am of the firm opinion that instead of ridiculing the people in having faith in rituals it will be better to restore the status of the Ganga. Look the conviction of the yatrees, the devotees and much more the sadhus is deep down at the state of the ecosystem where one can only have a feeling. It is the ecosystem that is deeper than the microenvironment (size: 10-6), or the nanoenvironment (size: 10-9) but the picoenvironment (size: 10-12) where the free energy exchange is all that matters. This free energy is what is ÔÇ£atmaÔÇØ or ÔÇ£roohÔÇØ and in terms of thermodynamics it is the driving force or Free energy of life processes. This the theme of my Book: ÔÇ£Ecosystem Approach to Life ProcessesÔÇØ: [Life Processes Health Disease & Aging, Mirza Arshad Ali Beg, 2012, Research & Development Publications, Karachi]. According to this approach, all humans, including people who feel a sense of calm and bliss over the polluted Ganga, are under oxidative dehydration-induced stress. All of us, when under stress look for reversal of the stress which may be possible by reductive rehydration by asking or praying to the unknown but omnipresent, who may bless the stressed soul with the much needed free energy and may be the means to get the desired relief and blessing for which millions of people go for yatra and visit shrines. All yatrees who go far yatra with firm belief, are blessed in some such ways that satisfies their soul. If this were not the case, people may not have thronged to such places in ever-increasing numbers. To them the polluted water does not smell, and does no harm. In thermodynamic terms the stressed state of the yatree is in dire need of free energy/driving force. The yatreeÔÇÖs faith is the medium for transfer of free energy and the much needed driving force. That is how the stressed yatree earns his reward for visiting the mela. Interestingly, all places visited by yatrees and devotees have some source of water, may be a river, a spring or a pond. The springs these days are just as much, if not more, polluted with microorganisms and chemicals as the Ganga; they also do not have as much dissolved oxygen as the freshwater flowing in the rivers. The devotees get their stress released just the same. So, the idea is that pollution may be causing deficiency in dissolved oxygen but the water continues to have the potential to provide the free energy at the picoenvironment which provides the relief to the firm believers like the Sadhus and devotees. So, sir, instead of ridiculing the traditionalists for their faith, let us concentrate on purifying the Ganga chemically and biologically; while the yatrees consider it pure enough to purify their soul, and my theory considers it energetically charged adequately to undo the stress. So, sir, Hinduism and for that matter any religion is not insensitive to the environment; on the contrary they are more sensitive to clean environment. The plain truth is that humanity begs of the governance system to adopt sustainable approach to the environment. Dr. Mirza Arshad Ali Beg Former Director General PCSIR Karachi arshadalibeg@gmail.com Comment This article lacks scientific approach. The question we need to ask is whether kumbh melas or religious practices pollute water, and if yes, to what extent. What kind of pollutants they induce in water? And what percentage of them? You will find it's the industrial waste that is almost solely responsible and not occasional celebrations. My Comment (23012013) This article may lack scientific approach but not common sense. The common sense demands that ÔÇ£The last person who can save an accident and does not save the accident is responsible for the accidentÔÇØ. Simple! The mela yatrees are asking for forgiveness through their religious practices. In doing so they are looking to purifying their atma or soul. So they take a dip of about 14 seconds, in the water of the Ganga, assuming that its water, bearing heavenly characteristics, will purify their soul. It is not the physical or biological purity that matters to them. On the contrary their conviction is so strong that they do not care about the physical or biological impurities; they consider it pure enough to purify their soul. This is where common sense matters. The Ganga has been physically polluted by the industries whose industrial waste is likely to cause the accident by way of harming the health of the yatree. The accident can be avoided by restraining the industries from discharging the pollutants. If not they will be the last ones which could save the accident and do not save the accident and hence will be responsible for the accident, by the universal laws. You do not need a scientific approach to solve your own problem. What needs to be done then is to warn all concerned: the industries, municipalities and individuals to refrain from polluting the Ganga. It is therefore the moral obligation of the Governing Hierarchy as well as all concerned to preserve the sanctity of the Ganga and all religious institutions, may be a temple, a church, a mosque or a synagogue. Coming back to the scientific explanation given in the earlier article, the confidence of the yatrees in the Ganga in providing purity is governed at the level where it is all in terms of energy. Despite the impurity, they consider water of the Ganga to be charged with adequate purity to provide them the sense of calm and bliss. Remember, some if not most of these people, have no access to the conventional system of healthcare. For them the Ganga and the springs near the shrines provide alternative therapy. Many such people are cured by what I call the Ecosystem approach to life Processes; such persons are under oxidative dehydration-induced stress; they are looking for reversal of the stress which may be possible by reductive rehydration by asking or praying to the unknown but omnipresent, who may bless the stressed soul with the much needed free energy and may be the means to get the desired relief and blessing for which millions of people go for yatra and visit shrines. This free energy is what is "atma" or "rooh" and driving force or Free energy of life processes as I have proposed in my Book: "Ecosystem Approach to Life Processes" [Life Processes Health Disease & Aging, Mirza Arshad Ali Beg, 2012, Research & Development Publications, Karachi]. Dr. Mirza Arshad Ali Beg arshadalibeg@gmail.com Former Director General PCSIR Karachi, Pakistan

    Posted by: Anonymous | 3 years ago | Reply
  • In an earlier comment I had

    In an earlier comment I had identified the need to concentrate on purifying the Ganga chemically and biologically. Since the yatrees are least concerned about the physical purity, let us not discourage the faith in the yatra by quantifying the impurity. It is bad enough that we cannot physically purify the Ganga, and it is worse if we cannot preserve the sanctity of the Ganga on which millions depend fo purifying their soul, and my theory: ÔÇ£Ecosystem Approach to Life Processes" [Life Processes Health Disease & Aging, Mirza Arshad Ali Beg, 2012, Research & Development Publications, Karachi]ÔÇØ considers it energetically charged to adequately undo the stress and provide the bliss. I now find that the departments concerned have taken the steps i) to increase the volume of freshwater flow into the Ghat areas, and ii) reduced the BOD levels from 22-25 mg/l to about 6 mg/l though for a temporary period by closing the polluting units. This has perhaps been possible when the governance system was forced by the Judiciary to adopt sustainable approach to the environment. Dr. Mirza Arshad Ali Beg Former Director General PCSIR Karachi arshadalibeg@gmail.com

    Posted by: Anonymous | 3 years ago | Reply
  • Dr Mirza Arshad Ali Beg, I

    Dr Mirza Arshad Ali Beg, I agree with you. The point we are trying to drive home is how the government has failed to take adequate steps to cap pollution. To comment on whether Kumbh should happen or whether devotees should take a dip in Ganga is not for us to preach or prevent. Our earnest attempt has been just to report the ground situation. I agree that religion do not harm environment. Almost every religious scripture preaches peaceful coexistence with other human beings, trees, plants and animals. Rivers and mountains are worshiped. At times, agitations by tribal groups have been triggered simply because mining companies desecrated their sacred hills. Your comments answered several questions that I had. Thank you.

    Posted by: Soma Basu | 3 years ago | Reply
  • Faith does not emanate from

    Faith does not emanate from the sole dip of Ganga. Spiritually faith comes from within through meditation and yoga. Ganga serves as the mediator between the soul and the Gods. The number of antisocial elements do not decline by a single sip of Ganga water. It serves as an excuse to the faithless one's who enjoy the sword of self-defence. Elaborate arrangements are made to ensure safety of the pilgrims at a huge cost by the administrator, however after taking a nice dip in Ganga there remains no guarentee whether the sin has been washed or being manipulated for the Indians who are effortless and live with tyranny. It is better to have faith on Ganga as a holy river and sacrifice everything to see it flows neatly and without the devil's archive in manifesting the divine abode.

    Posted by: Anonymous | 2 years ago | Reply
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