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792. Human Culture

Skill, capacity, talent, ability, efficiency, education, general knowledge, wealth, status, high caste, birth or any such endowment is PARTIAL, while culture is of the whole. Experience gives skill; several skills yield capacity; skill raised by capacity is talent; ability to change the skill from one field to another is ability; efficiency is to achieve more with less; academic training gives education; memory of information results in general knowledge; capacity to produce results in work is wealth; power and wealth combine to create status; caste is by birth. Culture is not these but it includes all of them, and is more. Culture is to be primarily a selfless, self-giving human being to whom every other person is a human being.

Edmund Dantes, the hero in The Count of Monte Cristo, by Alexandre Dumas was a 19 year old shipmate elevated to captaincy. He was wrongfully imprisoned. In the prison, he learned all the European languages, philosophy, chemistry, and the subtleties of human life knowledge. He was innately good, unsuspecting, strong, generous, loyal, devoted and dedicated. Escaping from the prison, he came by a princely wealth. He travelled to the Oriental nations, learned their wisdom, acquired their high cultural values and finally came to Paris. He called himself ‘Count of Monte Cristo'. The whole of Parisian society was anxious to cultivate him, attend his ceremonies, and offer him obeisance. While he called himself a Count, Paris saw in him Princely manners, treated him as a Prince, mistook him to be one who, in his modesty, styled himself ‘Count'. From a shipmate to Count, he made it in fourteen years, while such maturity needs several generations. How was it possible for him?

Dantes had in him all the positive cultural values innately. He had a fine character and a personality too. Faria, the priest in prison, gave him the highest mental education. The innate cultural values were the foundation. The strength of Personality absorbed the essence of the education to reinforce the innate cultural values into higher culture of aristocracy. What achieves is culture, all the rest are aspects that will reinforce culture. Without culture, none of them - education, wealth, etc. - can accomplish in the society. They are like the shining parts of a machine which by themselves are useless. Mother says Her Force in the earth's atmosphere offers Man what he can get in several births. What receives that Force is one's culture. What makes that culture possible is one's Personality, which is superior to formed character. The tabula rasa, the conscious innocence of Man, can receive all that comes from the Force if he is receptive - free from the crookedness of mind the Vedas speak of. To be human is of value to Mother. To treat others as human beings with human dignity is better still. It reaches its climax when it so treats the proverbially humiliated people. When such a Force is accepted, the first impulse is to visit the place where She lived. She considers it a superstition. She responds MOST when we call from where we are. What matters is sincerity. To make any place a temple is superstition. The temple is INSIDE.

story | by Dr. Radut