We have all heard/read about the most popular Gandhian principle- See no evil, speak no evil, hear no evil.
I tried to find out how relevant this principle is, 60 years after Gandhi's time. Let's see.
See no evil- Unfortunately, we live in a society where evil runs the show. No sooner than you open the newspaper/news web sites, evil starts pouring into your life. Terrorists scheming to blow up planes, Strong nations bombing weaker ones to assert themselves as superpowers. You reach your workplace and you see people trying to step over one another to get to the top, by fair means or foul. You get the picture.
Simply closing your eyes or in the metaphorical sense, ignoring or shutting the evil out won't help. That would be 'escapist' thinking. It will let you sleep better, but it won't change the reality of the world we live in.
So, is this principle no longer valid? - Gandhi was way ahead of his times, his foresight is unparalleled, so we know that's not true.
Was Gandhi an escapist? No, we know better than that.
Or did he mean we must try to eliminate all evil so that we don't have to see it? Yes, he did indeed.
Did he mean we see no evil in anybody, see only good? There is your answer.
Hear no evil-We have already established, the escape route-shutting evil out is not Gandhi. So, what do we do?
Hearing doesn't just apply to others' voices, it could also apply to the ones inside you.
I say, we use our ears as filters. Absorb the good, throw out the bad, drowning out the evil voices in our heads, only listening to the good ones. We know too well, which ones are which.
Doesn't that sound good? There's Gandhi for you- making ever green rules for a better world.
Speak no evil- This one seems the most doable of the three but also the most difficult. We only have to control our own tongue. If only, that was easy. Try going without cribbing, gossiping, finding faults for one day, you will know.
Its very difficult not to have negative thoughts at all. But, we can certainly train ourselves not to say them out loud.
You just have to watch what you say for a few days, if you don't say the negative things out loud, pretty soon, you will stop thinking them.
Easier said than done. But definitely worth trying. Let's try a little experiment with life. Let's try and live by these principles, one day at a time.