Does History tell us something ? What can leaders achieve ?  

by ne on 2021-09-29 under Others tagged with history

More often than not, it's believed that any passing event leaves behind a lesson.

What about the collection of all events that happened up until now ? And not just in one city, state or country - but throughout the world.

Let's take a closer look at different aspects of the life that went by shaping our history as we  know it.

Political

Starting with a totally unorganized system - from the stone age, We went through tremendous transformations. 

Most impactful government models were the Feudal System, Monarchy, Constitutional and Constitutional Monarchy. 

And most important political models were Feudal, Authoritarian, Capitalistic and Social.

Transformations were a result of some serious reforms by kings, rulers, Presidents of different times. For example - Gandhi changed the course of political history of India, Lenin transformed Russia to a super power based on a socialist ideology.

Economical

It's remarkable that within 2000 years, We were able to transition from Barter System to Metals to Fiat Coins to Paper Currency to Digital Payments, stock trading and what not.

The economical aspect of our history remains the most astonishing one, which is ever progressive and reaching new milestones in many ways, definitely with some hiccups every now and then.

Social

One of the most enigmatic aspect - it keeps on changing with changes in governments, rulers, economy, time and even environment. 

The world today is much more egalitarian than a century ago. There was a time when most of the population was categorized as untouchables, slaves and of lower race. Women wasn't given any stand in decision making, even at household level forget about politics.

And surprisingly, this hasn't been the same before that as well. When the civilization started - proper roles were decided based on biology - but apart from that there was an equal say in everything. No concept of class, untouchability and superior/inferior race existed.

Somewhere along the lines of changes, these social evils were introduced, and they kept transforming the society, eventually leading to eradication of most of the evils on a larger scale.

Emotional

People were mostly the same as always. They were greedy, lustful creatures having a wide range of emotions ranging from hate to love, anger to pleasure.

What changed is - people have started demonstrating more control of the emotions. They started worrying about their public image and how others perceive them. What this has resulted in is a stable, calm and understanding populace - but most of it is superficial, beneath the surface there's a wild animal - stressed about the identity, the inner self, the suppressed emotions. Result - hypocrisy and superficialness . Whosoever is true to his/her inner-self and can't wear this mask of stability is often perceived as outlaw, unstable, mad or ironically a fake personality.

Religious

This parallel aspect of our society as been there since inception of humanity - it seems. Ever since the beginning of societies - people have elected their leaders or rulers. In the nascent stage of civilizations, these rulers were hailed as supreme commanders, god on earth, and were treated as deities. Whatever they said, became irrefutable.

Different societies, groups were led by different leaders having different beliefs. Now the origin of most of the ancient religious scriptures or religions can't be traced, or the beliefs around their origins can't be proved. But one thing is common - all these scriptures were written by the pupils or followers of god or religious leaders. Could this so called god be a magnificent, charismatic and influential leader ? 

There's a high possibility of that. His/Her beliefs about life, culture, cosmos and right/wrong may have been transpiled into these texts. The followers of this leader, may have been the first group of people belonging to that religion. 

Example - Buddhism. Gautam Buddha got enlightened - meaning he found the ultimate truth of life, it's purpose and the base of our existence. He may have very well found it.

But what happened is, he tried to teach others about his knowledge and his way to attain enlightenment. That practice got transpiled into texts, which became buddhist scriptures. He was hailed as a god - by people who didn't really understand his teachings, and no nothing about buddhism.  Soon people started worshipping him, without understanding what he wanted to convey.

Now, Buddhism is relatively new, so the sources can be verified and people of studied buddhism would know that Buddha wasn't a God ( in a general sense).

But, what if Buddhism was found a lot earlier, let's say in Pre-history. The population hailing him as God would have been much more. And he may very well be worshipped like other deities - often with prayers, rituals  with an inherent desire or wish.

So what ?

Now, if we look at all these advances and observe the current world that we live in, as in 2020, does it seem like history is telling us something ?

I would opine that yes it is. It is telling us in numerous ways that 

Life keeps evolving. But, at the same time - it is a cycle. There's no beginning or end to it. And there's nothing such as old and new. 

The barter system has found it's entry to this modern age - with online exchange of goods.

The inequalities that existed in the Feudal system - were resurfaced in the World war eras, and even today. Lot of people are discriminated based on their language, ethnicity, religion, gender etc.

Underneath this mask of calmness, politeness, gentleness and so called sophisticated attitude, there's anger, stress, wildness and hatred which often leaks out in form of cruel acts. Most will disagree - even I thought that we actually are better compared to our ancestors. But I have read about so many incidents - where if people are given true freedom - they create chaos, they don't give a shit about law and order.  For example, a female artist decided to study human behavior. She stood still like a statue in a mall, challenging that she wouldn't react to anything. It started out with pokes, jokes and harmless acts but soon turned into humanity shaming incident. People actually started hurting her, to the extend that she was bleeding and was literally weeping.

Just imagine, if you're given total freedom to do anything - how many laws will you actually break in a year. And on top of it you're given a mask - full anonymity - will you be the same ?

Coming to politics, if given a chance - will you want to change the political system ? Yes, right. 

So, will the next President, Prime Minister or King. If only, someone comes as bold as Jefferson, Lenin, Hitler or Mikhail (ending Cold war, and USSR) - who can revolutionize the entire political system. 

Conclusion

What I am trying to say is mankind was always wild, ruthless and unorganized. The economic system, though more sophisticated, is based on the very principle of give and take. The political system will never meet the demands of the general populace, and is bound to change for better or worse every now and then - and not necessarily will be liked by the people whom it is governing. The society has the same traits and evils as it had during ancient times. 

What history tells us is - everything can be changed and will change - often with a revolution resulting from strong and bold leadership. A strong leader can give birth to a new religion. Rajneesh is one such example - he was widely known as Osho, and is of very recent times - people literally worshipped him like god. He was or not, is a different question - but what he definitely was - is a great leader, charismatic personality and influential speaker.

A powerful and strong leader can create a new political system, new economical system and a different society resulting in a completely different world.

Thomas Carlyle rightly said:

 

"The history of what man has accomplished in this world, is at the bottom of the History of the Great Men who have worked here"

 

 

What do you think has history taught us ? Let me know in the comments.