The entangled past between two worlds
When you truly dig deeper into ancient history, with an unbiased view of what we are to find, a common theme emerges through symbolism, shared myths and themes. The term religion and our colloquial understanding of it is both a misnomer and flawed as there is no reasonable distinction between the plurality of philosophy, mathematics, applied sciences from a different time and organised enclaves of blind worship, especially in the umbrella term that has been misattributed to Hinduism. The preservation of geometry, mathematics and metaphysical phenomena seen in The Jewish Star of David and the Hindu Shatkona, may very well be a coincidence until you realise that as you dig even deeper, traditions that preceded them came from the same place around the same time. Hinduism and Zoroastrianism namely, share roots while being the fundamental founding myths of civilisations both eastern and western, yet for some reason and for the sake of calcified identification, the west largely dismisses much of this shared history.
I have been witnessing some that misuse a Christian lens that sustained the initial growth of modern western civilisations, and demonise others despite very similar values beyond the superficial differences in aesthetics. Even after said civilisation becomes largely secular, this pernicious stance seem to persist. It always confused me why there should be any contempt at all by some in the west towards the east. Even when some of the new age western movements subsume and misappropriate deeply eastern traditions such as meditation, yoga, nutrition, mathematics and spirituality while at the same time ridicule the people and cultures that originated these ideas. This is not to say that there aren't bad examples on either side of the camp, but I do look forward to a day when we don't have to view ourselves with such politicised divisive lenses.
You can draw direct correlations between the symbolism of Adam and Eve, and the Union of Shiva and Shakti as the birth of consciousness and the bedrock of both traditions, the masculine and the feminine with it's constituent properties converging not only to create life but reality itself. I would argue that the idea of God through comparative readings, has always nudged me into believing that they speak of the divine aspect of our consciousness, rather than a supernatural force of otherworldly proportions.
None of these claims are inherently empirical either, but rather a conceptual understanding of truth that persist through time repeatedly through human civilisations.
Rise and Fall of Civilisations
My view is that there is no self-flagellation required by anyone for the actions of ancestors of their past, all that is required is deep love for humanity, our roots and ourselves to propel us forward. Divisive voices should constantly be challenged especially with the rise of internet and the decentralisation of information to the masses. Often, in today's cultural landscape, we have everything good that has been subverted, such as compassion and empathy which in my estimation is the function of evil that persist in each of us. When our shadows are unchecked, the collective shadows of a society reigns over all of us, corrupting otherwise good values, virtues and beliefs that make us whole.
Both the East and the West needs to realise and come to terms that we essentially have the same general problems, from the microcosms of our individual lives to the macrocosms of our societies. Exceptions of runaway tyrannies do exists to this day, but is rarely the norm if ever. Even Kingdoms of the past were beholden to the attitudes of its people, and corrupt kingdoms and tyranny never lasted beyond three generations approximately.
However, these days we are unable to truly understand what rule and destroy us, and have been conditioned to be apathetic if not overtly supportive of all that goes against our otherwise harmonic tendencies of preserving strong virtues that built our civilisations to begin with. While all civilisations inevitably rise and fall through time, I am foolishly optimistic that with the right approach, the fall of our modern civilisation could be cushioned to prevent total annihilation. Instead of being dust for an archeological study by a future civilisation, it is upon us to allow for an unbroken chain of continuity by learning from the mistakes of the past, and course correct the misdeeds we are committing in the present.
We don't have to be the final days of Rome, and if it is even possible for us to have an escape velocity against the cycle of rise and fall of this civilisation, we should press that button to find what lies beyond the event horizon.
The Case for a Wholesome Unity
To be clear, unity does not mean we need to be inclusive to voices of subversive nature, as that is the path to rampant corruption of our foundational virtues. We need to nurture families that are resilient through critical thinking, mutual respect and a deep seated defense and service of truth. We need to celebrate different cultures while being free to criticise each other before we turn destructive and harmful. We could still celebrate Chivalric values while learning from the Indians. We could still uphold Dharmic values while learning from the British. What we know today as Pythagoras theorem was from Shulba Sutras, and numerals being originated by the Indians. These cultures still exist today continuously from ancient times, so have the various other cultures from Greece to Iran, who have contributed significantly to human progress through the ages.
Perhaps it's time to put aside insecurities and the misplaced 'glory' of complete control we once had over others for a tiny, irrelevant space in history. With the rise of the East and degradation of the west, it may also be prudent to be fair to others while there is still time to do so, to end the cycle of inhumane dominance over one another. In our celebration of Plato and other western forefathers, perhaps it's time to also celebrate our Hindu, Egyptian or even African heritages. We can celebrate our collective human lineage and ingenuity, give each other credit where it's due, while being proud of our own cultures without shame. Growing up, I enjoyed and identified with stories of King Arthur as much as I cherished the heroic deeds of Rama. There was so much meaning I found growing up around the story of Sun Wukong, while being inspired by stories of Hercules. This does not confuse me on who I am, but informs me with a wider perspective of what I ought to be, what it means to be human and how I may transcend my own ego.
These strong roots did not spring out of nowhere either, and are often cultural retelling of stories much older than the culture it originated from. The American corporatisation and commodification of the world, as much as they push the world into unbridled late stage consumerism, are themselves seeing a complete breakdown and crisis amongst themselves on a deep spiritual level that is not sustainable for it's people. Societal decay on the streets of San Francisco requires an app to navigate so as to avoid stepping on human excrements. We can blame everything and build resentment or we could begin with an inward journey to make better, informed decisions for ourselves and those around us. By not challenging nature, but to exist in harmony with it, living with strong familial ties, building a strong community and as a result, a strong and resilient society.
A society that sells it's soul for profit, will always be subjugated by the few. A society that is not tethered to it's shared history, will eventually sell it's soul. We are currently doing the abhorrent things that Cronus did before his Son's had to overthrow and destroy him for it. Committing grave sins against ourselves and nature. We have seen this play out over and over again through history, and this is the where we can end this vicious cycle and save ourselves for a wholesome future of unity.
Without deep roots, a gust a wind is all that's needed to uproot a tree.