|Short description||Humanism newly explained|
|Motto||Dogma no more!|
|Location in Sarkarverse|
Neohumanism is the comprehensive and all-embracing social outlook elaborated by Prabhat Ranjan Sarkar, beginning with his 1982 seminal work, The Liberation of Intellect: Neohumanism. Sarkar's Neohumanism redefines both humanity and humanism, along with various commonly associated concepts. In addition, Neohumanism introduces many new concepts for promoting and expediting both the individual and the collective welfare.
Universalism is the central feature of Neohumanism. General humanism tends to cover only the human dimension in an anthropocentric view. In contrast, Neohumanism extends and elevates ordinary humanism, sympathetically respecting all created beings.
- 1 Definition
- 2 History
- 3 Key concepts
- 3.1 Devotion
- 3.2 Dogma
- 3.3 Exploitation
- 3.4 Humanism (general)
- 3.5 Humanity
- 3.6 Inspiration (motivation)
- 3.7 Internationalism
- 3.8 Mental illness
- 3.9 Mental modes
- 3.10 Protopsychospirituality
- 3.11 Pseudoculture
- 3.12 Rationality
- 3.13 Religion
- 3.14 Sentiments
- 3.15 Social justice
- 3.16 Social progress
- 3.17 Universalism
- 3.18 Value systems
- 4 Applied Neohumanism
- 5 Critiques
- 6 References
Sarkar describes Neohumanism as follows:
What is Neohumanism? Neohumanism is humanism of the past, humanism of the present, and humanism – newly explained – of the future. Explaining humanity and humanism in a new light will widen the path of human progress and will make it easier to tread. Neohumanism will give new inspiration and provide a new interpretation for the very idea of human existence. It will help people understand that human beings, as the most thoughtful and intelligent beings in this created universe, will have to accept the great responsibility of taking care of the entire universe, will have to accept that the great responsibility for the entire universe rests on them.
Neohumanism manifests in three stages of development.
- The first stage of Neohumanism is spiritual practice to enhance the physical, mental, and spiritual well-being of the practitioner. The stage of spiritual practice indirectly benefits society through the social service that is part of spiritual practice.
- The second stage of Neohumanism is spiritual principle (or essence). Its impact is mainly in the mental and spiritual realms, both individual and collective. According to Neohumanism, practice of rationality and adherence to the principle of social equality (especially when combined with protospiritualistic mentality) will not only strengthen individual minds but also the collective human mind to the point that humanity as a whole can withstand the destructive impact of geosentiment and sociosentiment and the ruthless exploiters who capitalize on those sentiments.
- The third and final stage of Neohumanism is spiritual mission. According to Neohumanism, when an individual's existential nucleus (soul) merges with the Cosmic Existential Nucleus, s/he attains the consummation of her/his existence. Neohumanism asserts that this supreme status ensures the future of not only the human world but also of the animal and plant worlds as well.
The theory of Neohumanism was formally introduced by Prabhat Ranjan Sarkar in 1982. However, much of his earlier writings, notably Ananda Vanii Samgraha (1956-1990) and Human Society Part 1 (1959), contained elements that foreshadowed Neohumanism.
Sarkar was not only a theoretician but also a pragmatist. Throughout the course of his lifetime, both his writings and his foundations evince a high degree of consistency. Hence, many of the organizations and programs that he set up, not just subsequent but also prior to 1982, reflected and promoted the concepts of Neohumanism.
The work of Sarkar is deeply rooted in the tantric tradition of India. In respect to Neohumanism, Sarkar has indicated great appreciation for many poets of the past, notably Ramprasad Sen, Satyendranath Dutta, and Rabindranath Tagore (all from the Bengali tradition) as well as Carl Sandburg (an American poet). Naturally, this list is very incomplete. Sarkar himself would no doubt offer many more names, some well known and some largely unknown.
This section describes some key concepts or constructs of Neohumanism. The concepts are listed in alphabetical order for easier reference.
According to Neohumanism, love for the Supreme (devotion) is the highest and most valuable treasure of humanity. It automatically results in universalism. However, Neohumanism deems devotion to be a very tender inner asset, frequently assailed by materialism and other onslaughts from the external world. To preserve this treasure, Sarkar submits Neohumanism as a practical philosophy that provides a protective fence for devotion by (1) establishing harmony between the spiritual and material worlds (2) providing perennial inspiration for the onward march of society.
Neohumanism defines dogma as a mental prison. In other words, a dogma is any concept (belief) that one is expected to accept without question. Neohumanism perceives such conduct as fundamentally contrary to human nature, which includes a constant quest for mental expansion. Hence, the position of Neohumanism on dogma is that all dogma must be eradicated.
Neohumanism discourages both geosentiment and sociosentiment, because both tend to be injurious to society. However, Neohumanism observes that, of the two, sociosentiment is more pernicious. Under the influence of sociosentiment, one group of people are driven to exploit a second group of people, that second group of people are driven to exploit a third group of people, and so on.
According to Neohumanism, there are many types of exploitation, but exploitation always tends to come down to the economic plane. Economic exploitation manifests itself in two forms:
- Politico-economic exploitation occurs when an imperialist nation or group engages in economic exploitation through the use of brute force to impose direct political control over another nation or group. For example, under the British Empire, the United Kingdom variously ruled the nations it conquered through three political mechanisms: direct rule, viceroys, and governor-generals.
- Psycho-economic exploitation occurs when direct political control is not or is no longer feasible (often due to military logistics). At such times, the imperialist nation or group engages in economic exploitation by injecting fear and inferiority complexes in the minds of the people that they would colonize.
A common name for psycho-economic exploitation is neocolonialism. However, Neohumanism observes that there is nothing new about psycho-economic exploitation. Wherever politico-economic exploitation takes place, it is invariably accompanied by psychic exploitation, the goal of which being to make the colonized people more docile. In other words, according to Neohumanism, in both politico-economic exploitation and psycho-economic exploitation, psychic exploitation is the foundation. Neohumanism asserts that when politico-economic exploitation is combined with psycho-economic exploitation, the likely social devastation is much greater.
In nature, there is a mainstream, and there is also positive and negative deviation from the mainstream. This is true for all species of living beings. Neohumanism classifies this deviation for plants, animals, and humans. When a living being substantially deviates from the mainstream in a constructive fashion, Neohumanism describes that being as remarkable, good, or blissful (depending on whether the structure of that being is of a plant, animal, or human respectively). Conversely, when a living being substantially deviates from the mainstream in a destructive fashion, Neohumanism describes that being as notorious, bad, or demonic (depending on whether the structure of that being is of a plant, animal, or human respectively). In respect to exploitation, our main concern is with human structures, specifically those human structures with genius that is exercised for destructive purpose, demons in human form/framework (DHFs).
DHFs are geniuses, and so they are exceptionally devious. They know how to pander to and play on the geosentiments and sociosentiments of the common people, who rarely think deeply. But truth does not remain hidden forever. So whenever a particular abuse of geosentiment or sociosentiment is about to get exposed or that particular geosentiment or sociosentiment is likely to lose popularity, DHFs switch to a different sentiment. Neohumanism designates the adaptive art of conveniently switching sentiments as metamorphosed sentimental strategy.
According to Neohumanism, DHFs wreak great havoc upon this world. Because of their adeptness at metamorphosed sentimental strategy, Sarkar also sometimes refers to DHFs as human chameleons. Like chameleons, DHFs are often very difficult to spot. Nevertheless, Sarkar insists that it is the duty of all neohumanists to identify the DHFs. Not only must neohumanists identify the DHFs, but they must also expose them.
According to Neohumanism, the radius of geosentiment and sociosentiment may be relatively short or long. In other words, they both have a minimal and maximal expression (geosentiment or sociosentiment minimitis and maximitis). With respect to sociosentiment, its minimal expression (sociosentiment minimitis) is the attraction felt toward one's nuclear family. That minimal sociosentiment may be extended to embrace a larger community, for example, a city, a state, a nation, an ethnicity, a religious group, and so on. When sociosentiment extends beyond nationalism and internationalism, theoretically embracing all human beings, that is sociosentiment maximitis. According to Sarkar, general (or ordinary) humanism is essentially sociosentiment maximitis.
Neohumanism is of the view that general or ordinary humanism is a distorted humanism that has done and is still doing harm in the world. According to Neohumanism, in so far as humanism expanded sociosentiment, it was a positive trend; but in so far as it sets limits on the expansion of the underlying spirit of humanism, love, it has been and continues to be counterproductive.
According to Neohumanism, there is a tendency for general humanists to substitute pity for love. This type of pseudohumanism inevitably fosters intra-human conflict. Sarkar states:
Suppose I find that a particular social group is suffering from starvation, and I provide food for them. This is humanitarian, no doubt. But [if] at the back of my mind I am thinking, "Let me utilize these people as the suppliers of our raw materials and the purchasers of our finished products, because these people are now obligated to us", [then] this sort of mentality will one day destroy peace in society. So this humanistic approach is not perfect; it is adulterated.
Suppose we discover that a particular group is educationally backward. We feel pity for its people because they are also our fellow human beings. So we think, "Let us introduce them to the printed word at least!" and actually we do something towards that end. But through this so-called "literacy drive", we inject ideas in their minds that paralyze them mentally, and then we ultimately govern these mentally paralyzed people as colonized people. In this way the peace of the world will be destroyed. This is all "intra-human conflict". The intention is to develop them socially in the way we like and thus destroy their originality. This is the mentality at work.
What is the reason for this type of mentality? "I pity them" – this vanity, this superiority complex, will eventually create satellite social groups. This adulterated humanism is not genuine humanism, nor is it true humanistic spirit. It is ordinary human sentiment or pseudohumanistic strategy in another form. It has some affinity with pseudoreformist strategy.
Sarkar rejects the classic definition of human being as "rational animal", which first appeared in Aristotle's Metaphysics insisting that human beings have characteristics distinct from animals. Sarkar considers human life to be an ideological flow, characterized by identification with and commitment to an ideology.
There are certain characteristics which are common to plants, animals and humans; some of which are common to animals and humans; and some of which are common to animals and plants. Some people have defined human beings as "rational animals", but I do not accept this definition. In my opinion, human life is an ideological flow. Human beings should identify themselves with that flow. If a human being is considered to be a rational animal, then could not an animal be defined as a "moving plant"? No, we can never say that animals are moving plants. Animals have their own distinct characteristics. Human beings also have their own distinct characteristics, which are collectively called dharma – mánava dharma [human dharma] or Bhágavata dharma [divine dharma]. With its characteristics such as vistára [expansion of mind], rasa [ideological flow] and sevá [selfless service], this mánava dharma is the true identity of human beings. Those in whom mánava dharma is not expressed are not worthy of being called human beings; they are human in form only.
According to Neohumanism, the impetus (inspiration or motivation) for human movement - human dynamism - may be either of two conflicting principles: the principle of selfish pleasure (átma-sukha tattva) or the principle of social equality (sama-samája tattva).
According to Neohumanism, selfishness is a socially divisive mental ailment. Those who promote or accept the dogmas founded on the principle of selfish pleasure typically do so in order to secure their own vested interests.
The concept of egalitarianism has been in circulation for thousands of years. Over time, the concept has become broader and more sophisticated. Recently, various studies have been conducted with results that endorse the tremendous importance of having a more equitable society (see, for example, The Spirit Level: Why More Equal Societies Almost Always Do Better by Richard G. Wilkinson and Kate Pickett). Neohumanism promotes egalitarianism by asserting the principle of social equality and rejecting all dogma and superstition. According to Neohumanism, realization of the principle of social equality is a natural consequence of spiritual practice (especially meditation founded on yogic morality, Yama-Niyama). However, realization of this principle is not the final stage of Neohumanism, because application of a principle is somewhat mechanical. In the final stage of Neohumanism, the human being's life is transformed into a blissful mission of love (see the third stage of Neohumanism).
Many general humanists support the concept of internationalism. Neohumanism observes that internationalism does not even rise to the standard of ordinary humanism. Indeed, it poses the same sort of risk to global peace as nationalism. Sarkar explains the problem as follows:
Suppose I was working for a particular nation, but now I am working for all nations. When I admit the existence of nations and say that I am working for all nations, then it is neither humanism nor universalism – it is merely internationalism. When I use the term "internationalism", I am admitting the existence of separate nations, and along with this I must naturally also think, within the nations, of the people's five fundamental requirements of life (food, clothes, education, shelter, and medical care). But when I discover that one nation is trying to thrive on the life-blood of another, I oppose it, and this opposition ultimately leads to world war. So internationalism is not the solution either.
From the perspective of Neohumanism, the League of Nations could not prevent World War II, and the United Nations cannot prevent a World War III. Only a world government could ensure peace on this planet.
Neohumanism alleges an increasing incidence of mental illness around the world. The trend appears to be common to both sexes and all age groups. Some have claimed that the statistics indicate no increase in the prevalence of mental disorders, but numerous studies (in England, Australia, the United States, and elsewhere) seem to indicate otherwise. In Robert Whitaker's most recent book, it is observed that despite a huge expenditure on psychotropic drugs, the number of disabled mentally ill persons in the United States tripled from 1987 to 2007.
According to Neohumanism, the major cause of mental disorder is a lack of harmony between the rhythm and speed of the inner world and the outer world. In modern times, humanity has made great progress in the intellectual sphere. But, for most people, the speed of that intellectual progress is not well reflected in the external world (for example, a rising standard of living). Similarly, the patterns of thought for most persons (their internal psychic rhythm) is quite different from the external rhythm of the objective world. These disparities naturally cause clash, and that clash is felt even more in the psychic realm than the physical realm. Neohumanism asserts that this is the reason why many human beings lose their mental balance. Moreover, one of the primary reasons put forth for the propagation of Neohumanism is the elimination of such disparities.
- Instinct: The position of Neohumanism on instinct is somewhat conventional. All living beings, developed and undeveloped, have innate instincts. Many if not most such instincts incite behavior that increases the likelihood of self-preservation of an organism or a species. So, for example, mosquitoes suck blood, and human babies drink their mother's milk. Neohumanism takes note of the fact that life feeds on life, but insists that human beings must employ rationality in the selection of food. In short, Neohumanism recognizes the fact that human beings are motivated to some extent by instinct, but Neohumanism expects human beings to rely more on rationality so that any needlessly destructive impact of instinct (and sentiment) is curtailed.
- Sentiment: Regarding sentiment, Neohumanism broadens the perspective. According to Neohumanism, undeveloped minds operate only on instinct; whereas, in more developed minds (including human minds), sentiment also functions and tends to exceed instinct. Goaded by sentiment, mind runs blindly after what it likes (or away from what it does not like). A sentimental being does not ask questions about propriety or even employ common sense. Accordingly, sentiment poses the risk that an irrational course of action may be adopted - a course of action that could destroy not just the sentimental individual but also an entire family or social group.
- Discrimination: Discrimination occurs when a conscious decision is taken regarding the appropriate course of action. A tiger stalks its prey and attacks from a selected vantage point. This is discrimination. A robber enters a house and calculates which room to plunder first, based on most likely gain. This is discrimination. A reasoned decision regarding pros and cons is taken. When discrimination goes one step further, considering a choice between right and wrong (proper and improper), then conscience (viveka) is invoked. At that point, discrimination rises to the level of rationality. Compared to instinct and sentiment, discrimination is a slow process. It takes more time to exercise discrimination.
Protopsychospirituality (also known as protospiritualistic mentality) is a type of thinking whereby one remembers that everything and everyone with whom one comes in contact is a manifestation of Supreme Consciousness (Parama Brahma). Before and after doing any action, if one remembers that all existential phenomena emanate from and return to the Supreme (Cosmic) Existential Nucleus, a benevolent mode of thinking naturally arises within the mind. In that state of mind, one cannot contemplate doing harm to others. Neohumanism asserts that a protospiritualistic mentality is essential for identifying some exceptionally devious exploiters. Identification becomes possible when the person with a protospiritualistic mentality notes that her/his benevolent mode of thinking is not reflected in the actions of the exploiter.
Culture generally refers to the refinements in human expressions. Everyone eats. However, to eat only after washing one's hands is commonly deemed to be part of the culture of eating. According to Neohumanism, human culture is one, but there are variations in its expression. For example, humans, being social creatures, typically like to communicate; but, depending on locality, different languages are used. Neohumanism observes that whenever one group of people has sought to economically exploit another group of people, the former group simultaneously attempted to destroy the local cultural expressions of the latter group. This has been done through the imposition of pseudoculture. Examples of the imposition of pseudoculture are the forced acceptance of an imperialist ruler's language, religious dogma, style of dress, style of eating, political forms, historical perspectives, and artistic expressions.
Pseudoculture is imposed by various means from brute force to the mass media to public education. Often, the standard of refinement in pseudoculture is less than that which it replaces. But regardless of the standard of refinement, the end result is that the cultural backbone of the colonized society is broken. Psychologically crippled, the colonized people lose the will and the power to protest against exploitation. Instead, they tend to deem it just and proper to hand over much of their national wealth to the exploiters.
Philosophers have defined rationality in various ways. Some of those definitions could equally apply to animals or even plants. Neohumanism offers a new and precise definition of rationality that calls for a standard of mentality that is not discernible in any species other than human beings. According to Neohumanism, rationality (also known as rationalistic mentality) is a three-stage process of discrimination that begins with adequate study to assimilate all relevant facts, proceeds to analyze the pros and cons of an action, and ends with a decision in favor of only a blissful auxiliary (practical action that furthers the welfare of all).
Throughout history, religion has had a domineering influence on the human mind. According to Neohumanism, all religions are based on dogma, and the propagation of that religious dogma has been instrumental in the creation of satellite groups. Some religious persons and priests propagate the damaging dogma of religion unwittingly. When such persons are made to understand their mistake, some admit their error and rectify themselves. Others, however, refuse to do so, fearing that the admission of error would injure their prestige. The latter group of persons thereby join the ranks of conscious agents of injustice.
According to Neohumanism, two types of sentiment are common to human beings (in both an individual and collective sense): geosentiment and sociosentiment. Both sentiments have a minimal and a maximal expression (geosentiment or sociosentiment minimitis and maximitis). As with any sentiment, both geosentiment and sociosentiment may have good uses, but there is also great risk of harm (harm to others and harm to oneself). Neohumanism observes that those who would exploit other human beings for their own selfish gain (exploiters) typically employ these two types of sentiment, often shifting or transforming sentiments whenever convenient.
Geosentiment is the attraction felt toward one's own home, city, or country. Its minimal expression (geosentiment minimitis) is love for one's home (house, homestead, or the like). The maximal expression of geosentiment (geosentiment maximitis) is love for one's country. In theory, one might feel love for the entire planet, but today such an expression of geosentiment would be very rare, possibly non-existent. In future, when interplanetary travel becomes commonplace, geosentiment maximitis may expand.
Geosentiment presents in many forms: geopolitics, geoeconomics, geopatriotism, georeligion, and so on. For example, georeligion would associate a religion or a religious group with a specific territory. So, the belief that God has granted a particular territory to a particular group of people is an example of georeligion. Similarly, the belief that prayer must be carried out facing in a specific direction is another expression of georeligion. Such type of beliefs (geosentiments) may prove harmless or harmful, depending on circumstances. According to Neohumanism, the potential for harm in geosentiment can be curbed through the cultivation of a rationalistic mentality.
Sociosentiment is the attraction felt toward one's own family, nation, or other social grouping (linguistic, religious, political, and so on). Its minimal expression (sociosentiment minimitis) is the attraction felt toward one's nuclear family. That minimal sociosentiment may be extended to embrace a larger community, for example, a city, a state, a nation, an ethnicity, a religious group, and so on. When sociosentiment extends beyond nationalism and internationalism, theoretically embracing all human beings, that is sociosentiment maximitis. According to Sarkar, general (or ordinary) humanism is essentially sociosentiment maximitis.
Sociosentiment presents itself in many forms: sociopolitics, socioeconomics, sociopatriotism, socioreligion, and so on. For example, sociopatriotism might express itself as jingoism with declarations like "my country, right or wrong" or "my country over all others". Socioeconomics might express itself in the form of an imperialist attempt to create colonies or satellite states.
Compared to geosentiment, sociosentiment has the capacity to do - and has done - much greater harm in the world. Sociosentiment can also be more difficult to recognize. As such, rationality might not be adequate to offset the dangers of sociosentiment. To overcome sociosentiment, Neohumanism prescribes an additional tool, protopsychospirituality.
Neohumanism extends the concept of society to include all living beings. Unlike most other theories, past or present, Neohumanism distinguishes between human society and society (in its broadest or universal sense).
In respect to the universal society, the stance of Neohumanism corresponds to the spirit of the third fundamental principle of PROUT. The physical, mental, and spiritual potential of each and every living being should be developed to the maximum. This means that humans should not only respect and protect the rights of the non-human creatures but also actively promote their welfare and happiness.
Regarding human society, Neohumanism asserts that no one should be left to lag behind. In a healthy human society, no one should suffer from oppression. Every problem - big or small, individual or collective - should be taken as a problem of the entire humanity. So, for example, Neohumanism strongly resists any form of social discrimination based on race or sex. In respect to women's rights, Neohumanism is highly supportive. Indeed, Neohumanism places a great responsibility on men to initiate action in support of those rights.
The concern of Neohumanism for social justice extends even to relatively minor but intractable matters. So, for example, though it pertains only to grammar, the male bias of the English language should not continue. When the pronoun 'he' can mean 'he' or 'she' and when 'man' can mean 'man' or 'woman', should not the same be the case with 'she' and 'woman'? Either English must have neutral words or the meaning of existing words must change. Though such type of change generally takes a while to implement, Neohumanism insists that it be done.
As with PROUT, Neohumanism views social progress as a condition in which the welfare and happiness of the entire society is increased. Neohumanism considers the individual and the society to be an inalienable concomitance. Unlike other philosophical theories that would satisfice or allegedly optimize social well-being through principles like the lesser of two evils principle or the greatest good for the greatest number, Neohumanism measures progress on the basis of improvements in the poorest sectors of society. According to Neohumanism, what is genuinely good for the individual is also good for the society; and what is genuinely good for the society is also good for the individual.
Neohumanism distinguishes two ways in which social progress may be effected: evolution and revolution.
- Evolution brings gradual and specific change.
- Revolution brings rapid and comprehensive change.
Of the two systems, Neohumanism greatly prefers revolution.
- Reactionaries openly oppose change. Neohumanism respects their honesty but deems such persons to be suffering from a fear complex.
- Reformists promote some miscellaneous fixes. According to Neohumanism, such persons outwardly claim to want change, but their inner desire is to perpetuate the machinery of exploitation. The contradictory nature of reformism may manifest as a pseudoreformist strategy.
- Vocal revolutionaries (also referred to as pseudorevolutionaries) are similar to reformists but even less forthright. They pretend to want revolutionary change, but their tall talk is belied by their action.
- Revolutionaries are forthright about their vision of a new society and unrelenting in their effort to materialize that vision.
According to Neohumanism, revolutionaries are the true well-wishers of society. As such, Neohumanism asserts that only the revolutionaries can effect significant social progress.
Neohumanism's concept of universalism is non-religious. It is a type of love that extends to all beings of this universe, animate and even inanimate. From the perspective of Neohumanism, such a viewpoint is the ultimate outcome of the principle of social equality and protopsychospirituality.
According to Neohumanism, the human-centered utilitarian approach of general humanism is problematic in that it allows the possibility of cruelty to animals and plants. Such type of cruelty inevitably fosters inter-creature clash. Neohumanism extends this analysis by observing that cruelty has a tendency to become habitual. In other words, what a human does today to an animal, that same human may do tomorrow to another human being. Hence, according to Neohumanism, general humanism may also foster intra-human clash. To offset the anthropic bias of general humanism and to reduce the potential for conflict, Neohumanism posits two types of value: utility value and existential value.
According to Neohumanism, until now, people have tended to think primarily in terms of utility value, typically the utility that another entity has for oneself or one's nation. So, for example, when horses were a primary means of transportation, the utility value of horses to human beings was very great. Today, with more efficient and comfortable means of transportation, horses have lost most of their utility value for humans. Accordingly, the status of horses in modern society is much reduced. But Neohumanism insists that horses also have existential value. The existential value of a horse to itself is no less than the existential value of a human being to itself. In terms of the existential value one holds for one's own existence, all beings are essentially equal. Neohumanism would give greater importance to this existential value than to utility value. Hence, Neohumanism encourages the principle of social equality rather than the principle of selfish pleasure.
Utility signifies the usefulness of one entity to another entity. In economics, utility is quantified in terms of preferences. From the concept of utility, a theory of normative ethics known as utilitarianism has been derived. In essence, utilitarianism contends that the proper course of action is the one that maximizes overall happiness, typically but not invariably the happiness of humans. (Some prominent utilitarians from Jeremy Bentham to Peter Singer have endorsed the concept of animal rights, although not all of them have implemented that concept in their personal life by opting for vegetarianism.) According to Neohumanism, utility value is an important consideration, but it must not take precedence over existential value.
- Renaissance Universal: Renaissance Universal (RU) is an organization for intellectuals. It promotes science, rationality, social equality, and universalism in an ongoing effort to solve the various problems confronting humanity and to expand our mental horizon.
- Renaissance Artists and Writers Association Renaissance Artists and Writers Association (RAWA) (a department of Renaissance Universal) seeks to inspire, unite, and uplift humanity through the fine arts and literature. The slogan of RAWA is "art for service and blessedness". This is in stark contrast to the oft-heard slogan, "art for art's sake".
- Ananda Marga schools: A major program of Sarkar's primary organization, Ananda Marga Pracaraka Samgha, is education. Accordingly, hundreds if not thousands, of Ananda Marga schools (from kindergartens to universities) have been established around the world. Today, the Ananda Marga education system is also known as Neohumanist Education. Naturally, in addition to the standard curriculum, the Ananda Marga schools also seek to promote neohumanistic rationality, social equality, and universal love.
- Ananda Marga Universal Relief Team: The Ananda Marga Universal Relief Team (AMURT) and its sister organization, Ananda Marga Universal Relief Team (Ladies) or AMURTEL, was founded by Sarkar primarily as a disaster relief organization. Over time, AMURT has also embraced long-term projects through a department known as Ananda Marga Universal Permanent Relief Society (AMUPRESO). The primary inspiration for all AMURT relief work is universal love.
- Prevention of Cruelty to Animals and Plants: Prevention of Cruelty to Animals and Plants (PCAP) effectively extends the scope of similar organizations (for example, the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals) to include the plant kingdom as well. This is consistent with Neohumanism's concept of a universal society.
- Ek Manav Samaj: Ek Manav Samaj (EMS), meaning One Human Society, is an organization and a movement that promotes universalism by encouraging the outlook that human society is ultimately one and indivisible. EMS organizes activities that foster social integration, for example, Sarkar's system of revolutionary marriage (where the bride and groom are of different ethnicity and no system of dowry is entertained).
In a recent book, Helen Crovetto asserts that there is a "dramatic" number of correlations between Ananda Marga and Mark Juergensmeyer's "description of religious groups inclined toward terrorism". Crovetto mentions here the imagery of "cosmic war" that appears in Sarkar's writings, and Crovetto repeatedly references language that seems to "satanize" opponents, for example, the term demon in human form that is part of the terminology of Neohumanism. After considerable analysis, Crovetto concludes that it is probably more appropriate to describe the followers of Sarkar as revolutionary rather than terrorist. As such, Crovetto classifies them as "revolutionary sociospiritual utopians".
- Sarkar, Prabhat Ranjan (1982). The Liberation of Intellect: Neohumanism. Kolkata: Ananda Marga Publications. ISBN 81–7252–168–5.
- When the underlying spirit of humanism is extended to everything, animate and inanimate, in this universe – I have designated this as "Neohumanism". This Neohumanism will elevate humanism to universalism, the cult of love for all created beings of this universe. Sarkar, Prabhat Ranjan (1982). "Devotional Sentiment and Neohumanism (Discourse 1)" of The Liberation of Intellect: Neohumanism. Kolkata: Ananda Marga Publications. ISBN 81–7252–168–5.
- Sarkar, Prabhat Ranjan (1982). "Neohumanism Is the Ultimate Shelter (Discourse 11)" of The Liberation of Intellect: Neohumanism. Kolkata: Ananda Marga Publications. ISBN 81–7252–168–5.
- Sarkar, Prabhat Ranjan (1982). Dedication in The Liberation of Intellect: Neohumanism. Kolkata: Ananda Marga Publications. ISBN 81–7252–168–5.
- Sarkar, Prabhat Ranjan (1982). "Devotional Sentiment and Neohumanism (Discourse 1)" of The Liberation of Intellect: Neohumanism. Kolkata: Ananda Marga Publications. ISBN 81–7252–168–5.
- The snares of dogma will have to be shattered to pieces; the iron prison gates of dogma will have to be crushed to dust. Sarkar, Prabhat Ranjan (1982). "Bondages and Solutions (Discourse 2)" of The Liberation of Intellect: Neohumanism. Kolkata: Ananda Marga Publications. ISBN 81–7252–168–5.
- Now, in sociosentiment, it happens that a certain group exploits another, and that exploited group in turn exploits a third. Sarkar, Prabhat Ranjan (1982). "Exploitation and Pseudoculture (Discourse 7)" of The Liberation of Intellect: Neohumanism. Kolkata: Ananda Marga Publications. ISBN 81–7252–168–5.
- If you analyze the history of the world, you will find that whenever one group exploited another in the economic sphere, they first created psychic exploitation by infusing inferiority complexes in the minds of the exploited mass. You will find that in each case of economic exploitation, psychic exploitation was the foundation. Sarkar, Prabhat Ranjan (1982). "Exploitation and Pseudoculture (Discourse 7)" of The Liberation of Intellect: Neohumanism. Kolkata: Ananda Marga Publications. ISBN 81–7252–168–5.
- Where psycho-economic exploitation is combined with politico-economic exploitation, it becomes doubly dangerous. Sarkar, Prabhat Ranjan (1982). "Exploitation and Pseudoculture (Discourse 7)" of The Liberation of Intellect: Neohumanism. Kolkata: Ananda Marga Publications. ISBN 81–7252–168–5.
- Sarkar, Prabhat Ranjan (1982). "An Ideology for a New Generation (Discourse 10)" of The Liberation of Intellect: Neohumanism. Kolkata: Ananda Marga Publications. ISBN 81–7252–168–5.
- This switch-over is called "metamorphosed sentimental strategy". That is, a person discovers that the sentimental strategy which he or she previously used to misguide innumerable people, is about to be detected. ("The people are forming a bad opinion about my real nature.") So he or she decides to exploit another sentiment just to save his or her own prestige, and that too very quickly, because any more delay means further loss of prestige. This act of shifting to a new sentiment – maybe from communalism to nationalism or from nationalism to communism – this metamorphosis of sentiment is called "metamorphosed sentimental strategy". Sarkar, Prabhat Ranjan (1982). "An Ideology for a New Generation (Discourse 10)" of The Liberation of Intellect: Neohumanism. Kolkata: Ananda Marga Publications. ISBN 81–7252–168–5.
- Meanwhile the refugees roam about hither and thither, and today the number of refugees is not only thousands but many millions in various parts of the globe. And for their precarious existence, for the ignoble deaths of those millions of wretched people, only a handful of people – demons in human framework – are really responsible. They come to the world and leave it in great ruins. Sarkar, Prabhat Ranjan (1982). "An Ideology for a New Generation (Discourse 10)" of The Liberation of Intellect: Neohumanism. Kolkata: Ananda Marga Publications. ISBN 81–7252–168–5.
- So those who practice this protopsychospirituality can easily recognize those demons in human framework. Then, after recognizing them, it is their duty to expose them to others also, to make people understand that they are repeatedly harming human society. It is not enough for one to personally unmask them; one must open the eyes of others also. Only in this way can the well-being of the world be promoted. Thus it will not be sufficient to lie peacefully in wait, like goody-goodies in isolated ivory towers. One will have to spread one's wings and soar high into the blue firmament. Sarkar, Prabhat Ranjan (1982). "An Ideology for a New Generation (Discourse 10)" of The Liberation of Intellect: Neohumanism. Kolkata: Ananda Marga Publications. ISBN 81–7252–168–5.
- Now, this sociosentiment, in its stage of excellencio or in theory maximitis, is called "humanism." Sarkar, Prabhat Ranjan (1982). "Pseudohumanism (Discourse 8)" of The Liberation of Intellect: Neohumanism. Kolkata: Ananda Marga Publications. ISBN 81–7252–168–5.
- And what is pseudohumanistic strategy? "Outwardly we preach the gospels of humanistic idealism, but in actuality we stab others in the back."Sarkar, Prabhat Ranjan (1982). "Pseudohumanism (Discourse 8)" of The Liberation of Intellect: Neohumanism. Kolkata: Ananda Marga Publications. ISBN 81–7252–168–5.
- Sarkar, Prabhat Ranjan (1982). "Pseudohumanism (Discourse 8)" of The Liberation of Intellect: Neohumanism. Kolkata: Ananda Marga Publications. ISBN 81–7252–168–5.
- Shrii Shrii Anandamurti, "The Glory of Human Dharma", 21 February 1979, Bhopal. Published in Ananda Vacanamrtam Part 8, Ananda Marga Publications, 1987.
- All the social, economic and geographical forces that normally motivate human beings are guided by dogma; and this dogma in its turn is entirely based on átma-sukha tattva [the principle of selfish pleasure]. Human beings yield to this dogma with the sole intention of attaining selfish pleasures; even educated people knowingly submit to dogma. Sarkar, Prabhat Ranjan (1982). "Sama-Samája Tattva (Discourse 6)" of The Liberation of Intellect: Neohumanism. Kolkata: Ananda Marga Publications. ISBN 81–7252–168–5.
- The endeavor to advance towards the ultimate reality by forming a society free from all inequalities, with everyone of the human race moving in unison, is called sama-samája tattva [the principle of social equality]... We must totally reject all those hypocritical ideas which are contrary to this sama-samája tattva, and we must welcome all those ideas which will help human beings to be established in it. All opposing theories must be removed mercilessly, just like thorns from our path. And in this process we must not give indulgence to any dogmas or supernatural ideas. This should be the task of today’s human beings; all people should combine their efforts and strive unitedly to accomplish that end. Sarkar, Prabhat Ranjan (1982). "Sama-Samája Tattva (Discourse 6)" of The Liberation of Intellect: Neohumanism. Kolkata: Ananda Marga Publications. ISBN 81–7252–168–5.
- Shrii Shrii Anandamurti, A Guide to Human Conduct. Fourth Paperback Edition, 2004, Ananda Marga Publications. ISBN 9788172521035.
- Whitaker, Robert, Anatomy of an Epidemic: Magic Bullets, Psychiatric Drugs, and the Astonishing Rise of Mental Illness in America. Broadway. 2011. ISBN 978-0307452429.
- Sarkar, Prabhat Ranjan (1982). "Geo-Sentiment (Discourse 3)" of The Liberation of Intellect: Neohumanism. Kolkata: Ananda Marga Publications. ISBN 81–7252–168–5.
- It is true that living creatures are the food for other living beings (jiivah jiivasya bhojanam); and indeed, the vegetables that we eat every day also have living cells in them. Sarkar, Prabhat Ranjan (1982). "Devotional Sentiment and Neohumanism (Discourse 1)" of The Liberation of Intellect: Neohumanism. Kolkata: Ananda Marga Publications. ISBN 81–7252–168–5.
- Once I read in a certain book that a great saint used to live only on locusts dipped in honey. That saint did not seriously consider that those little locusts also had vital life force throbbing in them... This concern for the vital rhythm throbbing in other human creatures has driven people to the fold of humanism, has made them humanists. Now, if the same human sentiment is extended to include all creatures of this universe, then and only then can human existence be said to have attained its final consummation. Sarkar, Prabhat Ranjan (1982). "Devotional Sentiment and Neohumanism (Discourse 1)" of The Liberation of Intellect: Neohumanism. Kolkata: Ananda Marga Publications. ISBN 81–7252–168–5.
- What happens through this protopsychospirituality? When a person is guided by it to think in a particular way, and sees that one's own benevolent mode of thinking is not reflected in other people's activities, then that person can easily realize their true nature. Sarkar, Prabhat Ranjan (1982). "An Ideology for a New Generation (Discourse 10)" of The Liberation of Intellect: Neohumanism. Kolkata: Ananda Marga Publications. ISBN 81–7252–168–5.
- This exploitation in the cultural sphere is accomplished by the propagation of pseudoculture. Every honest, virtuous, rational person must fight against this pseudoculture, and inspire others to do the same. If this is not done, the future of humanity will be sealed. It is proper for human beings to struggle for political freedom, for social emancipation; but if their cultural backbone is broken, then all their struggles will end in nothing – like offering ghee into a fire that has died out. Sarkar, Prabhat Ranjan (1982). "Exploitation and Pseudoculture (Discourse 7)" of The Liberation of Intellect: Neohumanism. Kolkata: Ananda Marga Publications. ISBN 81–7252–168–5.
- In the first stage you study; in the second you analyze the positive and negative sides; and in the third stage you arrive at "blissful or non-blissful, auxiliary or non-auxiliary". When you complete this whole process of logical reasoning, the outcome is your "awakened conscience". This state of awakened conscience is what is called "rationalistic mentality". Sarkar, Prabhat Ranjan (1982). "Awakened Conscience (Discourse 9)" of The Liberation of Intellect: Neohumanism. Kolkata: Ananda Marga Publications. ISBN 81–7252–168–5.
- Sarkar, Prabhat Ranjan (1982). "Exploitation and Pseudoculture (Discourse 7)" of The Liberation of Intellect: Neohumanism. Kolkata: Ananda Marga Publications. ISBN 81–7252–168–5.
- Sarkar, Prabhat Ranjan (1982). "Bondages and Solutions (Discourse 2)" of The Liberation of Intellect: Neohumanism. Kolkata: Ananda Marga Publications. ISBN 81–7252–168–5.
- Sarkar, Prabhat Ranjan (1982). "Geosentiment (Discourse 3)" of The Liberation of Intellect: Neohumanism. Kolkata: Ananda Marga Publications. ISBN 81–7252–168–5.
- What is the way to counteract this sociosentiment? The only way to eliminate it is to develop protospiritualistic mentality. The basis of this protospiritualistic mentality is sama-samája tattva [the principle of social equality]. When people understand this principle from the core of their hearts, they spontaneously develop protospiritualistic mentality, protospiritualistic psychic structure. Sarkar, Prabhat Ranjan (1982). "Bondages and Solutions (Discourse 2)" of The Liberation of Intellect: Neohumanism. Kolkata: Ananda Marga Publications. ISBN 81–7252–168–5.
- Spread out the sermons of amity amongst the humanity. Remind one and all that the establishment of human excellence does not lie in hypocrisy but in simplicity and sincerity. Make them all realize that every individual human problem, whether big or small, is the problem of universal humanity. Make them also understand that the origin as well as the finality of the entire humanity is one and the same. Shrii Shrii Anandamurti, 1982 January 1. Ánanda Váńii Saḿgraha. Compilation from 1956-1990, Ananda Marga Publications.
- In every sphere of life men have either substantially limited the rights of women, or made the ability of women to exercise their rights subject to the whims and caprices of men... The main point of the discussion is this: those who take advantage of people’s simplicity or ignorance are veritable demons in human form, and those who deceive people by exploiting their sentiments of sacrifice are even worse than demons... If at all a movement is required, it must be implemented by men themselves. Today men should consider the needs of women and gradually restore to women the rights which women once entrusted to men out of feelings of helplessness or in response to their heartfelt sentiments. Sarkar, Prabhat Ranjan (1959). Human Society Part 1. Kolkata: Ananda Marga Publications. ISBN 81-7252-120-0.
- From a letter to Carlos Quijano, editor of Marcha, a weekly newspaper published in Montevideo, Uruguay; published as "From Algiers, for Marcha: The Cuban Revolution Today" by Che Guevara on March 12, 1965. Contained in Socialism and Man in Cuba, Ernesto Che Guevara and Fidel Castro. ISBN 978-1604880229.
- Now, those who are courageous enough to speak out this truth in clear language – those who say, "Shatter this bondage of limitation!" – their path is called the path of revolution. And those who say, "Everything will be done gradually... why so much haste?" – their path is called the path of evolution. They can never accomplish any glorious task. Sarkar, Prabhat Ranjan (1982). "Exploitation and Pseudoculture (Discourse 7)" of The Liberation of Intellect: Neohumanism. Kolkata: Ananda Marga Publications. ISBN 81–7252–168–5.
- There are still others who say straightforwardly, "No, no, how can I contradict the way followed by my ancestors – my father, my grandfather?" They are reactionaries. They suffer from a mental disease. They are afraid to accept the new; they suffer from fear complex. They utter high-sounding phrases, but their hearts are filled with fear complexes. Not that they are terribly reprehensible. They say outwardly: "We are just doing the same as our ancestors did." But their ancestors used to wear wooden sandals instead of shoes, and shawls instead of tailored shirts, eat guŕ [raw sugar] instead of refined sugar, and drink water from wells instead of from taps. Do they follow this also? Sarkar, Prabhat Ranjan (1982). "Exploitation and Pseudoculture (Discourse 7)" of The Liberation of Intellect: Neohumanism. Kolkata: Ananda Marga Publications. ISBN 81–7252–168–5.
- The reformists say, "Let us go slowly on the path of reform." But actually they intend that the process of exploitation should continue without interruption. There were many reformists in the world, but in reality they did not want the welfare of the society; they only wanted to perpetuate the process of exploitation by bringing about some patchwork improvements. Sarkar, Prabhat Ranjan (1982). "Exploitation and Pseudoculture (Discourse 7)" of The Liberation of Intellect: Neohumanism. Kolkata: Ananda Marga Publications. ISBN 81–7252–168–5.
- I have branded these people as "vocal revolutionaries". They deliver long lectures against exploitation, but they do the opposite in practice. Sarkar, Prabhat Ranjan (1982). "Exploitation and Pseudoculture (Discourse 7)" of The Liberation of Intellect: Neohumanism. Kolkata: Ananda Marga Publications. ISBN 81–7252–168–5.
- Whenever people, after performing some activity, think of the Nucleus of the circum-rotarian universe, their minds become all-pervasive. Such people can never think of harming others; rather they will think only of universal welfare. Sarkar, Prabhat Ranjan (1982). "An Ideology for a New Generation (Discourse 10)" of The Liberation of Intellect: Neohumanism. Kolkata: Ananda Marga Publications. ISBN 81–7252–168–5.
- Who says that those creatures who have lost their immediate utility value have no right to exist? No one has the moral right to say this. No one can dare to say that only human beings have the right to live – and not non-humans. All are the children of Mother Earth; all are the offspring of the Supreme Consciousness. Sarkar, Prabhat Ranjan (1982). "Pseudohumanism (Discourse 8)" of The Liberation of Intellect: Neohumanism. Kolkata: Ananda Marga Publications. ISBN 81–7252–168–5.
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- Lewis, James R., Violence and New Religious Movements. 2011. Oxford University Press. ISBN 0199735611.
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- Whitaker, Robert, Anatomy of an Epidemic: Magic Bullets, Psychiatric Drugs, and the Astonishing Rise of Mental Illness in America. 2011. Broadway. ISBN 978-0307452429.