Rationality in the Terrorist Era

January 25, 2016 OPINION/NEWS


Sattar Rind

It appears to have become a new culture of thinking in this terrorist era that we are observing things only through the terrorism perspective rather a feared perception of terrorism. I think we must avoid this.

As this is an entrapped net and we look ready to fall in, terrorists are not as big a threat to this world as the media pretend, greatly enhancing the horror. Besides, no one is providing the reasons for and a solid solution to this phenomenon.

In particular anthropologists/sociologist/psychologists and other social scientists are not coming forward to analyse the causes of this trend and giving a solid solution to it. Though I am sure, that nature will not allow them to kidnap this world for too long a time.

Thus we must not forget that religion has been a part of human beings since the early period of human life. Human beings had not even known very early on how to bury a dead body or did not know where it went when he/she dies.

Therefore they used to bury all necessary things with a dead body that could be required, when he/she would awake from the existing position. Yes this helplessness had also become a point of realization that someone was there, a very much ‘super’ being controlling all of this and was something beyond understandable to them but that one should implore before Him.

Related to this therefore was what the subcontinent’s greatest ever poet Mirza Ghalib said in one of his poems, that ‘when there was nothing there was the God – When there would be nothing there would be a God’. The most astounding thing he said however in the same poem was that the issue is not related with the God but the question is ‘if he couldn’t have been born what may have been happened?’ Nothing, therefore, he should have been sorry for being in this world. In other words all issues are related with the existence of human beings.

However neither of these issues are new nor is the human being a newly created creature who has to know how to live in this world. Besides, we know the history which is also full of these kinds of incidents and, war has remained part of the human psyche.

Or at least around 1000 BC an epic poet of ancient Greece, Homer, conveyed the same massage in his great poem ‘Iliad’ that wars are unavoidable and will always be there. The human beings are bound to fight these wars and following them, tragedies are bound to happen and human beings have to bear them.

But accepting all of this, one thing has also evolved equally, side by side, a parallel of human history that we call ‘rationality’ and ‘reasoning’ in human history.

It must be stated within the early stages of human history, though we may not go too far and assume that it started from the first human thinker- Thales of Miletus and up to Friedrich Nietzsche or again to Bertrand Russell.

This way, we observe that rationality has had a long history of traveling in order to reach the modern world.

‘Faith’ along with ‘rationality’ or reasoning’ remained the main part of human beings even though they are autonomous to each other. However we had to have endorsed human capability that faith and rationality have remained, though unbelievably, in a hormonal state in the human mind. It was a great attainment of the human mind in spite of the most controversial experience, at a great level.

The question then is what went wrong in the post-post modern period of human development? At what point did the social/political animal fret so much that he become irrational and senseless up to the level of burning human beings alive? Or leaving the ‘ideal’ life of western countries and preferring to flee to join a deadly game in the Middle East? Or blasting his own life and killing innocent people he does not even known. It’s beyond comprehension to some extent.

If rationality exists and has a role to develop this world in terms of changing it, in the sense of positivity and progressing from primitive to cultural to civilization, and making this world a reasonable place to live in, then why has rationality stopped working in human minds?

Yet one cannot close the eyes to human beings’ collectiveness towards its moral standard, which always indicates towards ‘reorganization of reason’, as one’s knowledge or one’s only practicality and judging what is rational in life. It is nothing but the process of thoughts.

On the other hand by choosing to act irrationally, you are confessing your lack of trust in your own mind and it’s impotence, and that you cannot make the right decisions. This undercuts your ability to live, since reason is man’s means of survival.

Besides, rationality is in your self interest because the only way to achieve desired outcomes is to act according to reality. To understand reality, one must use reason consistently. Any deviation can have long term problems, since one’s knowledge is often derived from one’s previous knowledge, in other words its cultural process which human beings are the creators of.

Rationality does not mean being a perfectionist in one’s thoughts and ideas. It does not require you to spend enormous amounts of time evaluating every idea. Rationality means acting according to reason and ability of reasoning experience which could vary from area to area, culture to culture and geography and ecology.

It means accepting only that which you have reason to believe and using logic to decide what is harmful and what is rationally good for life or methods of survival.

What is currently being observed, and one may never ever have witnessed it before in human history, is that the electronic, print or social media look as if they have decided to greatly enhance the fear in the world. This though has a direct proposition with the security business. Secondly, this fear made people dependent on watching and reading whatever appeared in the media. Thirdly, this chaotic phenomena become a source of money in billions of dollars for many powerful people and they are bound to continue this trend. Fourthly, this will conclude in dangers and the impact in the augmentation of this fear and horror will be long lasting and very negative in human psychology.

It has already disturbed at a significantly high level the social fabric of society and further extension of this fear might become a controlling mechanism for all powerful forces.

Therefore it is in the reach of those powerful countries and many people to turn to the age of reason for the great cause of humanity and to stop this very dangerous game once and for all.






Sattar Rind

Sattar Rind lives in Sindh, Pakistan. and is an Author with four books to his credit. three poetry and one on politics. As a Columnist he has written for a number of newspapers and magazines since 1991. Sattar can be contacted at the following email address: [email protected]


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