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  Paradox of the Modern Age ::

The world has become a global village. People from different religions, background and culture are meeting, inter-acting and mixing frequently. Technological barriers have been broken. Computer and IT technology are altering our lives in many ways. Changes are taking place in the ways we think, behave, work, act and live. Our life styles are changing. Changes are taking place at a very accelerated pace. Tremendous social transition is also taking place. Old reference points are vanishing. Some of the yesterday’s knowledge and skills are becoming obsolete. Newer skills are needed to meet the challenges of today and tomorrow.

Life in the modern world is becoming full of paradoxes. While our buildings are becoming taller and taller, our tempers are becoming shorter and shorter. While our roads are becoming wider, our viewpoints are becoming narrower and narrower. While our exposure to other religions and cultures is increasing, we seem to be fast becoming intolerant to others’ beliefs and viewpoints. At times, ‘isms’ are turning fanatic to the extent of destruction.

The wide range of credit cards and other financial facilities tempt us to spend more than we earn. We are becoming a race of debtors. While our houses are becoming expensive, fancier and bigger, our families are becoming smaller and our homes are getting broken. We manage to have all the conveniences but have little time to enjoy those goodies. Most people strive for a string of degrees to append to their names and satisfy their ego but commonsense is becoming very uncommon. Tremendous information and knowledge are available from several sources including print, visual and digital media - but wisdom is given a go by. We are building very modern and high tech health care centres to cure our sick bodies but are forgetting the sensible ways to good health. We have fallen for reckless habits of eating, working, living and sleeping.

We are becoming so busy that we have no time to read. We spend hours in front of the idiot box. Always busy multiplying our possessions we rarely care for our own ethics and values. We talk too much but seldom have time or willingness to listen attentively. Our increased selfishness makes us love only our own self and seldom love those we expect love from. Physical exercise is giving way to watching aerobics on TV. Our prayers if and whenever performed are more a ritual than a soul cleansing process.

Man has been all the way to the moon and back. But we have trouble crossing the road to meet our new neighbor. We have built smart high-speed computers to store and process tons of information. We have faster Internet and several e-mail accounts, but have ever-increasing gaps in our meaningful communication. We exchange frequent emails and engage in chat with strangers and acquaintances on the World Wide Web around the world but communication with our near and dear ones is becoming extinct.

We have conquered the outer space but not the inner soul. We bother more about the pollution around us but have little caring for the dirt within our own souls. We have split the atom, but not our prejudices. Prejudice, arrogance, anger and revenge have overtaken the better of us.

We are living in an age of fast foods and slower digestions. Men around us stand tall sans character. We talk more about world peace and less about domestic tranquility. We have class clashes, religious fanaticism and professional and corporate wars. Modern technology has brought an era of disposal of diapers. Most people believe in a throwaway morality. Basic ethics and values are being left by the wayside.

There is a mirage. The picture looks rosy but it actually is grim. We cannot leave the legacy of such situation for the coming generation. While retaining the positive developments, we must ourselves clear a lot of the mess created during our times. The situation is not beyond hope. Having faith in our fundamentals, we are confident of getting out of this situation by making a sincere effort in the right direction. Through this book, a sincere attempt is made to explore the right direction for the benefit of those who are seeking greater meaning in life.

Management as a profession in India has been increasingly aping the west for inspiration and guidance in behavior and practices. Ancient Indian wisdom contained in Hindu Scriptures like Vedas, Shrimad Bhagwat Geeta, Vedanta and Epics carries ample detailed guidance for management in all walks of life – be it personal or professional/business life. To meet the challenges of fast changing globalized environment, it was felt necessary to integrate the Eastern and Western philosophy and practices in management and to offer to the readers a good mix of materialistic approach supported by spirituality. It is taking people back to their roots to motivate them to move forward with solid foundation.

Purpose is to re-emphasize on the often forgotten but good old simple but important values of life such as truth, honesty, sincerity, commitment and self management etc while trying to achieve laudable material goals of creation of wealth.

A vast majority already knows all the values and ethics enumerated in this book. But the ethics are less understood and least practiced. It is hoped that the book will be a simple guide and inspiration for all.



It is book written in a very simple day-to-day language – san any high jargons or high fundamentals. Serious study of management theories or psychology per se has also been avoided.

During the writing this book, I asked myself a question as to who will ultimately be benefited by reading this book. I also asked a similar question to some friends who are familiar with this work. Some of the answers that emerged are:

This book should be a compulsory reading for all management students and upcoming managers, it will also help senior managers in positions of authority who can influence the ethics and values of corporations in India and abroad. The thoughts and values enumerated in the book are un-disputed but most managers usually give them a go by – maintaining that these are not relevant or practical in modern times. Reading the book will inspire all the readers to rediscover the hidden strength and practicality of these time tested values and ethics.

Besides managers in corporations, managers in all other fields like domestic and social domains will find the same thoughts to very practical and rewarding in the long run. Almost all men and women in all walks of life will gain from this book.

Although not specially linked, the book will also show serious readers the way out of some of the ills like corruption and other scams that have become a hall mark of our country.

In the endeavor to provide inspiration and to bring home the concepts, icon of ‘Lighthouse’ has been utilized. In the pages that follow, the strengths, values and vision of ‘lighthouse’ are discussed and effort is made to translate those very qualities and attitudes in human behavior to get optimum results for peaceful and harmonious world.

In these days of ruthless competition and expectations of excellence, mere acquisition of high professional and corporate management skills are not enough. Ultimately, all success depends on personal discipline and individual performance. Whatever maybe one's skills, one has to know how to manage himself. Self-discipline is the crux of success.

Very respectfully, this book attempts to show direction to individuals to adopt themselves to a new kind of leadership - Self Managing Leadership. A leadership style where one does not wait for someone to direct or command to act in a particular way. A leadership that inspires individuals to have immense faith in themselves and in their capabilities and hidden potential; to understand the needs of the situation and act to the best of their capabilities without being asked to do. The action is to come not because of any external motivation or threat but from the self-commitment to perform.

It can be a pathfinder for the faithful.
Throughout the book, the masculine gender is generally used for ease of convenience. At places where possible I have tried to use he/she. However using he/she at all places would have made the text clumsy and unreadable. I wish to assure all and especially my valuable female readers that I mean absolutely no offence to them. If any such impression gets created, I regret and apologise in anticipation.

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