Destroying nature


It was but natural for Karl Marx, the father of socialist ideology and author of Das Kapital to predict that “capitalism contained the seeds of its own destruction”. Stretching this proverbial statement of the great thinker a further, it will not be an overstatement in case it’s claimed that the modernity contains the seeds of destruction of the entire human civilization. What that is new is modern. For a caveman the discovery of fire was modern. Or for that matter the invention of wheel, the most far-reaching innovation some may claim till date, was modern. The process of evolution is as old as beginning of life itself on the planet earth, modernity in that sense certainly is a continued process of evolution. In case process of evolution is a natural phenomenon signifying progression then how come progress contains the seeds of destruction? Let us not confuse natural process of evolution with that of modernity induced by the industrial revolution. The era after industrial revolution has hardly left any aspect of life untouched. The period after post industrial revolution underlines a successful story of an unprecedented development. Yet it is a chronicle of wanton destruction also. In this backdrop it can be safely assumed that modernity contains within itself the seeds of human destruction also. The gratuitous desire for progress has brought to fore a deep conflict between development and conservation. No doubt development has radically advanced the comforts of life; still at the same time an ecological disaster too is looming large. Even few decades ago our State was reeling under utter poverty. The people slowly but steadily have succeeded in breaking the fetters of historic backwardness. Ongoing semblance of progress and prosperity has radically altered the entire outlook of the State; overall conditions are not as harsh as it uses to be even five decades before. Indeed we have progressed and progressed in leaps and bounds; explaining the obvious is of no use. But at what price? The ecological costs are quite high; the development process has caused irrespirable loss to the Mother Nature. The greens have been turned into a jungle of concrete, fresh streams of water stands fully polluted. Sure, the conflict between nature and development is not unique to our State alone, it’s a universal phenomenon. Today man has caused an irreparable loss to the environment; the erratic weather patterns need no further scientific evaluation that nature is angry with man. The furry of ‘hybrid’ sandy storm has stunned climate scientists in America. It will take scientists years of rigorous research to offer a conclusive explanation. Still experts consider global warming to be one of the contributory factors behind the nature’s fury. Climate change is an established fact; human-induced global warming has been raising the overall temperature of the surface ocean since the 1970s. In the pre industrial revolution period, man and nature lived in complete harmony; existence of life on earth fully protected the fragile ecosystems. However post industrial revolution in less than few centuries what we describe as modern period the material greed of man has deeply imperilled the future of life on earth. It is sad that modern man has developed the notion that only money can make him happy. If material advancements alone could bring joy, America would have been the happiest country in the world. But everybody knows that Americans are not happy in spite of the oceans of wealth and they are in search of spiritual peace and fulfilment. True we cannot live without bread but it is unfortunate that we have learnt to live for bread alone in today’s society which is induced by materialistic values. Indeed it can be said that with the kind of knowledge man has acquired presently, he has been broadly able to overcome the curse of hunger and disease. Still despite tremendous scientific outreach, man has fully failed to find a fine balance between development and nature. However that’s not the only predicament, in spite of the indiscriminate exploitation of nature, man still lives unhappily.