Mistrust, a growing social malady

By M.N.Sulehri
Man is a social animal and it is a society that provides him with such an atmosphere that enables him to understand the intricate network of relations existing between him and the others around him. Relations, no matter what kind they are, depending on the ethos offered by moral, social, and religious institutions of society. Values, personal or impersonal, regional or universal, do affect a man’s behavior and actions. The social values are restricted to a specific milieu while the universal ones, in one way or the other, are the same all over the world. For example, moral ethos such as honesty, truth, trust, mutual confidence, and righteousness are weighed positively in every part of the world. The loss of belief in any one of them creates a sort of imbalance within the limits of social interaction.

In our society, utterances like: how can you say, I can’t believe, it’s impossible, who said to you, etc, will often invite your attention. Why have we become suspicious of one another? Why the atmosphere of suspicion is becoming a popular trend of the day? The answer is that we are losing our moral standards. We avoid honesty and truth. We lack trust and mutual confidence that enjoy pivotal importance in building up a healthy social milieu.

Why do we lack trust? It has various social, religious, political, psychological, and even economic reasons. Religion, politics, economy, and education are the factors of great importance that affect the whole social fabric. In our part of the world, pre-election lofty political slogans, that are seldom or never materialized, help in creating an atmosphere of mistrust among the masses and the political junta. Heads of religious parties thinking themselves nearer to the people also plunge into the political game. They do it, no doubt, with best intentions, but are swayed by the prevalent wave of indifference and forgetfulness. So the kings of politico-religious areas of society play their part in dividing the masses into various airtight factions. As a result, the people, let trust and mutual confidence aside, become intolerant and find it impossible even to listen to others.

Every one of us knows that political decisions and policies of the past have left serious repercussions on the economy which has directly affected education. Nearly 50 percent of the population is illiterate. Illiteracy has dragged the people miles away from liberal and positive thinking.

Now, come to the psychological aspect of suspicion and mistrust. There are some people who have always a sense of fear that could be a natural trait or a result of some old mishap. They think that they are going to be hurt or deceived and grow more and more suspicious of the people they are interacting with. Such people do leave effects on their acquaintances. They find pleasure in spreading baseless news. Such rumors also help to create mistrust among the masses.

Moreover, some of us are in a habit of telling lie to get their job done. Ever wonder why? It is because we want to hide our incapability of doing things. We don’t express our point of view honestly rather we conceal the facts which sometimes worsen the situation. This also creates suspicion among the administrators of different organizations and the common people. Persons, intended to have their problems solved by dint of fake information, not only harm their own case but father many problems for honest and efficient candidates – the most affected stratum of a society in a milieu prevailed over by mistrust.

Breach of trust is very harmful in any case, either it is between two persons, two nations, or among different groups of a nation. The last one (among different groups of a nation) is the most pernicious to the national solidarity of a country. To be honest it is very much present in our society. What should be done to get rid of this rampant social malady is a question that itches the sensitive tissues of every thinking mind.

It is not so easy a problem as it is thought to be. To restore mutual confidence among the people is such an uphill task as requires serious and honest efforts. No single person or a particular group of people can change the situation. It should be done individually as well as collectively. Provision of modern secular education along with true religious teachings (true in the sense, the teachings igniting sectarianism should be banned), and the promulgation of Islamic principles could be effective to eradicate the evil of inequality. If it is done, the equality gained would foster the feeling of brotherhood that is necessary to strengthen the social ties. Further, those at the helm of affairs should also be educated on pure humanitarian bases; people with social and political insight should be on the front. They should be able to steer the nation towards the new horizons of national prosperity. To sum up in few words, we must have the people who know that our sorrows are to be shared together and joys to be celebrated mutually rather than individually.

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