(The International Academy of Ethics, a think-tank of Poets. Philosophers, Thinkers. Scientistsand Social Scientists)
ETHICS: LIFE-LINE OF MANKIND
A MASTER NARRATIVE BY
DR LALIT MOHAN SHARMA, A MEMBER OF THE ADVISORY COMMITTEE
ETHICS: LIFE-LINE OF MANKIND
Ethos and Ethics share close etymological ties, the Collective Character and the Moral system. Morality practised by a people orchestrate the common face, the collective character of a people. One would like to accept here the fine distinction between morals and ethical values. The latter are the eternal verities which withstand the trial and travails of time and place. Morals have temporal and spatial affiliations and affinities with structured patterns of culture and thought peculiar to an age and place as society in general bows to pressures of attitudes inherited and religiously accepted and adopted. Burning of heretics, denying certain people entry into temples, social clubs, centres of weapon training, or disallowing practice of religious rites and rituals to certain segments of society. But times change, habits change, counter pressures over- power, battles are fought and won for the larger and better benefit of men and women on this beloved planet.
American Civil War in second half of nineteenth century. Across stretches of land, masters lose, slaves triumph and democratic Clarion Calls are sounded and heard. Morality of a whole continent, not just of the Whites or the Blacks, adopts the new grammar spelt out in legible, forceful character by Nelson Mandela. Buddha’s gospel is no longer only sculpted in statues in meditation and bliss, nor brooded over in monasteries, but it is incarnated as Satyagrah, the insistence on truth and nonviolence, the political weapon in the polite yet firm mind of Gandhi.
Morality as a badge of honourable practice by a people at a particular point of time is bound to give way to the higher, more lofty and subtle, demands of ethics.
To borrow terms from palmistry, morality may trace the head and heart lines of human hands, but Ethics, certainly, follow the flow of Life- line on human palm. Making prospers when it’s crowned with the laurels of Ethics.
That ” All times are corrupt ” was once observed by a famous poet. But, to bring the erring back to right lanes isn’t problematic in terms of traffic monitoring. This, indeed, is the burden which the teachers, poets, social scientists and public intellectuals carry for mankind in general, and come out with stirring, inspirational human speech loaded with purified and pragmatic values of Ethics.
When William Faulkner said in his acceptance speech of Nobel Award, ” Man shall not only endure, but survive”, he articulated the faith in ethical values which transcend individual morality or that of a collective of a time, and which he beautifully expressed in Dilsey, the old Negro woman in The Sound The Fury… .
Dr Lalit Mohan Sharma has published eight books of English poetry including, “A Three- Step Journey”, a translation of Zahid Abrol’s Urdu Poetry. P. lal who published his first book of English verse, “The Brown Tree”,found his poetry ” Very differently exciting” from a great deal of Indian verse in English. His 2021 book, “Parables : Fair and Flawed”, and “There’s No Death”(1922) have been received well.
His new book of Hindi verse, पटल से प्रांगण तक, will shortly be out.
He has been anthologised in several books as a poet and academician including ‘ 21st Century Critical Thought, A Dialogue with Post-Modern Voices, Vol I, Earth Vision. publications.