Since there can never be a consensus as to what the word ‘civilization’ actually means and who it is that can be called perfectly civilized, some important questions remain unanswered. Is our kind of medicine necessarily superior to people looking for the most reasonable cures to old, incurable diseases amongst the blessings of nature? People dwelling in the untouched and unexplored parts of the world are often privy to life’s deepest secrets. Things that elude us, being surrounded by concrete jungles. They have their language, traditions, cultural history, and scientific studies. They are deserving of all the respect and honor we bestow on ‘formally educated’ people.
How do they live?
Often, large groups stay in one forest clearing – their version of a village. There normally is one circle in the center where communal rituals are performed. Their religious life revolves around, mostly, the cycle of seasons and natural elements they propitiate for harmony in their daily lives. Living in a forest and living so close to the core rhythms of nature facilitate their extreme faith and belief in the power of this Almighty Force. Civilization, having risen above nature worship, now stands on the brink of destruction. Global warming and environmental pollution are real threats to life. Faced with a choice between ‘simple’ rituals to satisfy elemental forces and a clear disregard for all of them, humanity may have kept the wrong foot forward. The forests are where life began, and they may not require propitiation, but they require love, care, and tending.
It is, ultimately, the tending of nature that mankind, especially, has always required, whether fruits ripening with a burning sun, or rainfall nourishing plants to produce tender vegetables.
Without knowing what it is we need to protect, no initiative is complete, or even begun. It is important, now more than at any other time, that we realize what a rich and beautiful source of plenty the forests are. Feeding the human mouth and resting the tired spirit, these lands are man’s only hope of a harmonious relationship with the elements. We need to see them, know them and protect them. And we need to start now.
Born and brought up in New Delhi, it was Sharad’s childhood passion to play cricket for India. While on a holiday in 1990, he saw his first tiger. Little did he know that this one sighting would immerse him into a realm where forests and tigers were all that mattered.
Sharad’s experiences as a wildlife photographer have inspired him to observe the tiger’s behavior for over 30 years and motivated him on his own journey as an entrepreneur. He started Nature Safari India Pvt Ltd, with a focus on “Conservation through Tourism.” to align himself to the mission of saving the regal species and repopulating them in India’s forests. In 2006, he set up one of India’s premier jungle lodges in Kanha National Park.
Sharad believes that there are many lessons to be learned from a tiger that can be applied successfully to leadership—both in business and in life. Here’s a new book by Sharad Vats on management and leadership skills to learn from a Tiger.