“All expressions in this universe,” Sarkar wrote in 1985, “are divided into three strata – physical, psychic and spiritual – and not a single stratum among them is unimportant or negligible. For the integrated development of this world, we want all three of these strata to be properly developed, and their speed to be accelerated. Not a single stratum is unimportant – neither the physical stratum, nor the psychic stratum, nor the spiritual stratum.” PROUT thus envisions a uniquely different society, a balanced society in which cultural development and self-realization are as important, if not more so, than material development. Development is all three spheres of existence will ensure a healthy society capable of meeting all true human needs.


Progress is frequently considered an increase in personal comforts, amenities and wages on the material level. In the 1960s, the invention of plastic bags was seen as progress, but today many countries are banning these products which have become a huge environmental hazard. Better and newer automobiles also represent a sign of progress, as they give their owners freedom to travel. But this invention also has its limitations—the speed in London during rush hour today is about 13 miles per hour, the same as it was when horses traveled these roads about 100 years ago, and the air is polluted from car exhausts. In the world today, material advancements have also caused much stress and suffering on the mental or psychological level. Progress on the mental and physical levels is always accompanied by side-effects and newer problems. Real progress, PROUT maintains, lies not in material or mental progress, but in attaining inner happiness from self-realization in the spiritual level. This inner happiness has no side effects; it neither pollutes nor misuses resources nor causes mental imbalances.


Neo-humanism is a worldview that extends the humanistic vision of one human society to include all living beings. Following in the tradition of native peoples, the neo-humanist vision is to see all life as sacred and all beings as manifestations of one, integral whole. This vision includes forming a deep relationship between human beings and the world in which we live. Neo-humanism rejects all isms and dogmas that divides people from one another and from nature. It is fundamentally spiritual in nature, because it acknowledges the inherent unity in all life and the spiritual essence at the core of all beings.


PROUT’s neo-humanist vision recognizes that all human beings collectively are the stewards of the earth and its resources. This is our universal birthright and responsibility. Sarkar termed this concept our “cosmic inheritance.” These resources, these commons, belong to all of humanity and hence society must develop policies and laws protecting and utilizing these commons in a sustainable manner for the wellbeing of present and future generations.

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