Lighting the lamp of knowledge

Lighting the lamp of knowledge

Today we live in a global village. The standard of living has improved by leaps and bounds - thanks to science. But whether we are enveloped with harmony and a sense of well-being is the moot question.

People are in a constant state of flux, insecurity and doubt all over the world. It is during these times one wonders how man lived in the past. Was he free of trials and tribulations, free of complications, humiliation and uncertainty?

A trip down the annals of history reveals that man did come up ingenuous methods of facing obstacles that bogged the lives of people time and again. While kings and leaders resorted to politicking and wa- rs, seers and philosophers handled the crisis in their own way.

Way back in the 12th century AD, Basavanna, a royal poet saint of Karnataka took it upon himself to educate the masses.

The logical thinking king came up with the panacea of global peace using local resources. The insurgence of new flow of thought modelled according to the needs of society became the forte of this great man.

 He blended his liberal thought flow into the mainstream of the country, and tried his best to retrieve the ignorant masses from the clutches of superstition and rigidities of religion. He realised that the local masses were ignorant and illiterate due to the lack of education and the caste system. The social danger which was looming large caused a lot of concern to this regal rational.

 The seer recognised the root of the problem. The common man who was deprived of formal education was the easy prey of knowledgeable but gre- edy men who exploited them to the hilt. While the wily had their coffers clanging with gold the lesser mortals wallowed in ignorance and poverty.

Basavanna sought to educate the masses through meaningful lyrics popularly known as Vachanas in the language of the common man.

He used homely metaphors and examples to put across his radical thoughts which are significant and relevant to this day. 

We will be failing in our essential duty if we commemorate Basavanna after ignoring the values he stood for. This is the time to garner our spirit and explore the essence of life and chip in our little bit towards peace and harmony in the world. This will also prove to be a fitting tribute to Basavanna who lived as a shining  example of humanitarian values embellished with ethics.