India’s Economic Rise vs. Poverty

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A look at the issue nobody wants to address.

Lately there’s been a lot of hype with reports on India’s strengthening economy, some economists even predicting India will overtake China and speaking of growth in double digits.

At the same time we know that approximately 400 million Indian people still live in poverty – especially in the rural areas where almost three out of four Indians and more than 70% of the Indian poor live.

In spite of the positive outlook, nobody can or will attempt to predict if the rising economy can and will help eradicate poverty and the suffering of the people.

Population explosion

In this context it is alarming to note that birth control is never mentioned. India will also be the fastest growing population if birth control is not implemented seriously and will soon surpass China’s total population. To date, India’s population stands at 1.28 billion (!) which already has a terrible impact on resources such as staple foods and clean water. India also has to constantly cope with droughts that bring famine and even more poverty especially to the rural population, the very people who grow the food needed for all. Every year, India adds more people than any other nation in the world, and in fact the individual population of some of its states is equal to the total population of many countries.

Any increase in population growth is sheer madness but rarely does the government address this situation while at the same time the religions continue telling their flock that every child is a gift from God, hence it is God’s will.

As long as there is no dedicated effort being made to educate the population about birth control on a much broader basis (equally shared between men and women), we will be facing a future full of poverty, war and suffering. India and in fact our entire planet cannot sustain more people.

Osho has reiterated the global need and in particular India’s need for birth control ever since he began speaking publicly:

Just thirty years ago, when I started talking to people, I started talking about birth control– and stones were thrown at me. Three times attempts on my life were made. Now, in thirty years, India’s population has more than doubled. When I started speaking, the population of India was four hundred million; now it is nine hundred million. If they had listened to me, there would have been no poverty. But they have increased the population by five hundred million.

The earth is

Now from where are you going to get food for these five hundred million… jobs, clothes? And it was thought five years ago that India will have a population of nearly one billion by the end of the century. For the first time India will become the most populated country. China will be left behind; up to now China has always been ahead.

But recently, seeing the population growing faster than the economists and the mathematicians had calculated, they have changed the idea. They say now that by the end of the century the population will not be one one billion, may be one billion and three hundred million.

In the times of Gautam Buddha the whole population of the world was only twenty million. The earth is overburdened. It is not your past life’s karma. You are doing it right now – you go on doing it. And they were against me because I was teaching something which goes against their philosophy and their religion. Their religion says, “God gives you the children. You cannot prevent them.”

If God is giving you the children, then god is giving you the poverty, and then God will give you death too, to the whole country.

They go on clinging to old, out-of-date concepts. That is the reason for their misery, for their suffering; otherwise, every individual, if he takes his life in his own hands, and drops all conditionings and starts afresh, and looks into each suffering and each misery, can get rid of all suffering and all miseries.

There is no reason why anybody should be miserable.

Do you see any tree miserable?
Do you see any deer miserable?
Do you see any bird committing suicide?

The whole existence is so blissful – except man. Something is wrong with man’s conditioning. He has to drop his conditioning and look into his miseries. And whatever is making him miserable, he can change it.

But it needs guts, it needs courage.

Osho, Socrates Poisoned Again After 25 Centuries, Ch 6, Q 9 (excerpt)


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