What is true Change?

Its been a while since I posted to my blog. Part of the reason is that there is so much going on in the world and I tend to be Tweeting more (@DrSavi). A guess apathy is another reason. All these reasons are not really justified as I believe to blog is to share ones view point, suggest debate and seek verification of ideals. Tweeting is good but it could be supported by greater depth of discussion through an attached link.

As I said, there is so much happening in the world. My last posting was in February and at the time we all saw the pace of change sweeping North Africa. Since that post date Libya and Syria are centre stage in the demand for change and greater freedom.

I was recently fortunate to be a guest on Radio 2’s Aled Jones Good Morning Sunday. In my moment of reflection, I pointed out,

‘As we sit in our armchairs watching from a distance I wonder if we ever thought about why it takes so long to demand change.’

The full transcript is shown below, together with a link to the audio:

We’re all watching the news and almost hourly developments of people close to Europe & further afield struggling to free themselves from their current rulers and injustices. Everyday it seems that more lives are lost or put at risk in the hope for an outcome that will result in a new and fairer way forward for a country.
As we sit in our armchairs watching from a distance I wonder if we ever thought about why it takes so long to demand change.

Maybe its because often people with power want to hang on to it. Or, could it be that the public have adopted an apathetic approach to life as their survival depends upon it. People can also be unknowingly conditioned to accept the status quo.

In mid April 1699 the 10th Sikh Guru, Guru Gobind Singh established the Sikh identity called the Khalsa. Its establishment continues to assure defending the defenceless, honest living and equality. Guru Gobind Singh lost his father, mother and children in the struggle for freedom.

The Sikhs succeeded in creating fighting for freedom. In some countries and societies the challenge continues.


I should also point out that at the time Sikhs not only fought for the freedom, liberty and justice, they were defending the defenceless. India today enjoys an environment of religions living side-by-side, however, communal violence and manipulation by extreme groups such as the  RSS continues and in many cases on a covert basis.

The question posed in this article is really one of what drives change? Is it a case that oppression by a selective few can only last for so long until just before a camels back is broken. Or, does a sense of revolution come when all else has failed. Maybe achieving change is harder in the 21st century as there is a need for:

  1. The correct environment – enough support
  2. Infrastructure abandonment – i.e: supports of a regime know that the ‘writings on the wall’ and its ‘time to switch sides’!
  3. Only with the latter taking place, weapons turned on the people asking for change can be turned off.
  4. Media Vs Propaganda Vs the revelation of truth

As both Syria heats up and the Libyan situation is developing into a turf war (both sadly with the loss of lives), when will the desire for change be concluded. Will it be a positive outcome for all? Maybe it is up to the leaders to view that forced and violent suppression will further condem them (leaders) and they have an opportunity to demonstrate that they care for a positive outcome.

In terms of my statement about apathy, maybe I really meant to say that sometimes we are too accepting of regimes. A case in point being Libya and the appeasement by the West over the years, including the sale or weapons. The latter is clearly from a country management to country management perspective. However, inside a country acceptance is ‘safe’ as it secures milk to babies and infrastructure continuity. Maybe its only a revolution that really achieves change and there is no half-way house.

We continue to live in a world where there is inequality or as George Orwell implied in Animal House, ‘All animals are equal but some animals are more equal than others’. We marvel (including media frenzy) at the spectacle of regal ceremony but on the next corner accept that poverty is inherent in our global reach.

True change comes from within with a passion to exercise and drive it through but the conditions must be right for it to be lasting and worth it.


Categories: 2011, Anti-Poverty, Media Appearances

1 reply

  1. Hi Savi, hope the legs have rocovered from the bike ride…

    Interesting article on change; issues surrounding mentality, maintaining guiding coalitions and having a bais for action. I think a state of realisation occurs in everyone when they want change and have the emotional intelligence to strive for it, but maintaining that positivity, endurance, passion, persistence and level of persuasion is difficult. We are told not to be sheeps and follow the crowd, but safety and solace can be gained from being in that environment; therefore the key in the future is not single people leading change, but a critical mass of change-makers forming movements such as the occupy Wall Street movement of late, which is leader-less.

    All our souls are untarnished, free and one, its the realities of life and the labels we subject ourselves to that create differences. My view on Sikhi is that its beyond being a religion, it’s a movement… “A way of life”, that can be an example if more knew about it.

    Not sure you’ve heard of the Baru Sahib project, but the fourth prediction from Guru Gobind Singh Ji is near to fruitiion; where an Akaal University will be erected near Dam Dami Taksal that translates SGGSJ in all the languages of the world. The land has been donated, just the money for the building needs to be raised.

    Kind regards,

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