Safety and security should be personally ingrained principles of life
Safety, or "Suraksha" in Sanskrit, is an integral aspect of our lives. It encompasses not only our personal safety (atma suraksha) but also extends to the safety of others (para suraksha). While we acknowledge the importance of safety in principle and theory, often, we fall short in its practical application. It's during moments of unexpected jolts to our safety awareness, such as accidents or incidents, that we are reminded of the imperative of prioritizing safety. In this article, we will explore the timeless wisdom of ensuring safety and how it can be applied in our modern lives.
Learning from the Past:
Our ancestors have left us with enduring examples of safety measures. They constructed massive temples, forts, monuments, and more, adhering to prescribed guidelines. These architectural marvels have stood the test of time, and their builders prioritized safety. Over time, industrial and technological advancements have further refined these guidelines, emphasizing safety precautions.
Key Principles of Safety:
Prioritize Safety over Speed:
There's a Hindi proverb, aage dowd, peeche thod, which translates to "if you build or do anything in a hurry, often, you may have to carry out demolition and alteration." This serves as a reminder to avoid hasty actions, emphasizing the importance of safety over speed.
Temples practice regular maintenance, often performing jeernoddharana kumbha-bhishekam every twelve years. This major restoration process is a reminder to devotees to use the temple responsibly and reinforces their commitment to its upkeep.
Timely Attention to Safety Concerns:
Promptly addressing emerging safety issues is crucial, especially in large public infrastructure. Our scriptures advise, Shubhasya sheegram, meaning all good and auspicious tasks must be done promptly.
Anticipate and Prevent Accidents:
Accidents don't simply happen; they have human and material causes. Adopt a proactive approach and avoid dismissing incidents as mere fate or prarabdam.
Strive for innovation in safety methods, technologies, and devices. As the Bhagavad Gita suggests, embrace a variety of efforts (Vividaha cheshtaha) to enhance safety.
Cultivate a Safety Culture:
Foster a culture of safety among employees in your organization. They should be mindful of safety features in products and services and effectively communicate these features to customers.
Safety in Your Personal Life:
Extend the principles of safety to your personal life. Become a role model by practicing safety at home, work, on the roads, at the beach, and during travel. Inculcate safety awareness and commitment in your family members and staff, including support employees like drivers and cooks.
Creating a Safety-Conscious Community:
Spread a safety culture in your residential area by involving neighbors, service personnel, vendors, and organizing periodic safety drills. Use every accident, no matter how small or big, as a community learning experience. Engage with affected individuals and their families to discuss the causes of accidents and how to prevent them in the future.
By following these guidelines, you can become a "suraksha dharma parivartak," a change agent for security, and contribute to a safer world.
Dr. M B Athreya