Knowledge removes the darkness of ignorance in life

Pune, 15 January 2012

True education I believe is that by which the individual is strengthened and can be away from sorrow. If someone criticizes, one can listen to the criticism boldly, and when one has to offer criticism or comment, one can give them with patience and confidence, without hesitation. There should be no timidity, there should be joy, and a sense of mental fulfilment – this is knowledge. Knowledge removes the darkness of ignorance in life, makes you joyful. Without knowledge, we remain depressed in life. Whoever is depressed, understand that he lacks knowledge. What is the reason for sorrow? Whatever you have received, will eventually go away, we will leave it all behind. Nothing is going to stay here; everything will change. Nothing will remain static here, neither our body, nor our home, our profession, our prestige – we will go beyond all these one day. Then what is the fear about?

So, it is extremely necessary to eradicate ignorance. In many villages, people do not send their children to school. They do not study. Educated people are becoming scarce in the villages, in the backward regions. We need to impart education.

Similarly, in every region, we need to obtain knowledge. What food and how we should eat it, we have no knowledge of it. We eat only carbohydrates – potato, rice, roti – we only keep eating these. Potato is starch and carbohydrate, so is rice and roti. We get only one nutrient in our diet. By adding a little bit of lentils, the meal is not balanced. That is why acidity is generated, people fall sick, they get diabetes.

If you go to North India, what they eat is brinjal, potato, and tomato, only these three things. Besides this, they cook no other vegetable at home. If anything else is cooked, it is during festivals. So much oil and chillies, along with potato, brinjal and tomato. These three have zero nutritional value. They contain no minerals. Okra/Lady’s fingers (bhindi), ridge gourd (turai), bottle gourd (lauki), carrots and many other vegetables – we forget all these. There are so many vegetables in India – parval (pointed gourd) these are not grown. Different kinds of vegetables should be grown. One should have knowledge of food.

So, ignorance has to be eliminated, and next, injustice has to be put to an end; wherever there is injustice in the name of caste, in the name of religion. Recently, a communal violence bill is being introduced by the government. If you look at it, it is rather scary; a draconian bill. Even in the Lokpal Bill that is being introduced, one who lodges the complaint gets two years’ punishment, the person against whom the complaint is being lodged gets six months’ punishment!
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