STATE TIMES NEWS KATRA: A special lecture was organized by the School of Philosophy & Culture (SoPC), Shri Mata Vaishno Devi University (SMVDU) on the theme “Freedom and Morality” in the Matrika auditorium. Prof. Balaganapathi Devarakonda, Head, Department of Philosophy, University of Delhi delivered the lecture, which was attended by more than six hundred students from various streams of the University. Prof. Balaganapathi discussed the interrelated issues of the meaning of life, freedom, morality and the problems faced by the new generation due to the exposure to social media and smart phones driven by artificial intelligence. He defined a meaningful life as the intersection of good life, happy life and satisfactory life. Further, he defined the use of social media as the desire to connect to the unknown. However, the problem with this approach is that users of social media are not mindful of their immediate environment and as a result feel anxiety and depression. Moreover, the idea of binary epistemology that the objects of our knowledge can be categorized neatly into two separate and opposite categories is creating much confusion and conflict. For instance, since school we teach children that boy and girl are opposites. But our Indian culture does not talk about opposites, but teaches that creation is a result of a combination of not the opposites but the complementary. For instance, according to our Indian cosmology, five fundamental elements, viz., earth, water, fire, air and ether come together in different ratios to constitute new properties. The lecture was followed by a question and answer session. The event ended with the felicitation and vote of thanks to Prof. Balaganapathi.
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