A civilization is a “highly organized society with complex institutions and attitudes that link a large number of people together.” Thus, our modern societies are well organized with complex system of the police, the army, the civil service, agriculture, industry, business, education, means of communication, telecommunications (telephone, wireless, satellite communication), the mass media (radio, TV and the press), medicine, engineering, science, commerce, defence arrangements and so on. The populations in big and small villages, towns, cities, and countries are living a “civilized” life according to the means available to them. Culture particularly is the totality of beliefs, religious and artistic activities and thoughts in society. Thus, the religious, literary, artistic and philosophical in patterns of thought and behavior determine the cultural refinement of a particular society.
We cannot disregard the facilities and conveniences of life that are available all around. Electricity and now atomic energy has changed the whole pattern of life. Our homes and streets are well lighted, and we have changed the darkness of night into the brightness of day. We have all sorts of electronic appliances to provide entertainment at home. Atomic energy gives us cheap electric power to run. factories and ships at ease. So do we have thousands of inventions like the car and airplane, the computer, the tractor, and tube-well engine and medicines and surgical instruments that have given us pleasures and comforts that a hundred years ago were only dreams.
Modern civilization in the advanced Weșt is not an unmixed blessing. The cleverness of the advanced people has gone too far in using the scientific and mechanical facilities for the development of weapons of mass destruction. There is the rise of modern imperialism (domination of one country or countries by another country or countries), which means control of the natural resources and political and economic policies of the less developed countries by the more developed ones.
The developed countries themselves have distanced themselves greatly from moral and spiritual values (standards) in their zeal to advance materially, mechanically and scientifically. Their dependence on the ways of modern civilization, which means speed in worldly progress, has made them give up the old precious values of selfless devotion to a life of worship and prayer, love for other human beings and objects of nature.
While the constant threat of diseases like aids and cancer looms large (appears threateningly) and the danger of a nuclear (atomic) war constantly hangs over the developed world, the developments of modern civilization sometimes appear to be meaningless. Surely, if the world wants to enjoy and relish the sweet fruits of modern civilization, it will have to create a situation when
- All the countries or societies are equally developed
- when science and machinery are used positively and beneficially
- when the old moral and spiritual values of all societies (these being quite common) are practiced freely