Ten armed men open indiscriminate fire on hapless passengers at a terminus railway station in Mumbai, then murder three of Mumbai's top policemen. While this is happening, the other terrorists take hostages in two five-star hotels. The sixty-hour ordeal ends with the toll reaching more than 200 dead along with the terrorists except one who was captured alive.

While the country was watching this live on television, tempers were running high due to the stock replies given by top government leaders and the whole thing reached its climax with one leader claiming, "such incidents do occur in metropolises".

Heads rolled, stratagems were changed, new dice were thrown and amidst slogans of "the spirit of Mumbai lives", "Mumbai has awakened, let's keep her awake forever" the common man is as confused as ever.

Several people raised the issue of the motivations behind such carnage. How do you convince someone to carry out such dastardly cruel acts ? Is there a shastric explanation. Yes, there is.

Lord Krsna explains in the Bhagavad-gita that :

According to the modes of nature acquired by the embodied soul, one's faith can be of three kinds-in goodness, in passion or in ignorance. This means that as you are infected by a particular mode, you put faith in a particular faith or mode of worship. Then that faith takes over your consciousness and you act accordingly. Especially in Kali-Yuga we observe this pattern of thinking – "My worship is better than your worship because My god is better than your god". When so-called religion is permeated with this kind of egoistic attitude what can one expect from its leaders ?

The background behind the disturbances of this age can be traced to the vision of the great sage Vyasadeva. Ravindra Svarupa Dasa,  one of ISKCON's spiritual leaders describes it succinctly in his book “Endless Love” as follows –

This story opens one sunrise fifty centuries ago in the Himalayas, where the sage Krishna-Dvaipayana Vyasa sits in trance on the bank of the Sarasvati. In his meditation, Vyasa sees a future of unrelieved horror unfold before him. He sees Kali-yuga, the age of iron, begin and bring with it universal deterioration. The decay is so deep-rooted that matter itself diminishes in potency, and all our food progressively decreases in quality as well as quantity. Vyasa sees the effects of chronic malnutrition on generation after generation; he watches it gradually diminish their span of life along with their brain power; no one can escape the progressive drop in intelligence and ability to remember.

The harassment of hard times upon an increasingly witless populace hastens its moral and spiritual decline. People begin to slaughter animals for food; they become more and more enslaved by drugs; they lose all sexual restraint. These habits further their physical and mental deterioration. Vyasa watches them sink deeper and deeper into sensuality and ignorance. Families break up, and women and children are abandoned. Increasingly degraded generations, conceived accidentally in lust and growing up wild, swarm over the earth. Leadership falls into the hands of unprincipled criminals who use their power to loot the people. The world teems with ideologues, mystagogues, fanatics, and spiritual bunko artists who win huge followings among a people dazed by social and moral anarchy. Unspeakable depravities and atrocities flourish under a rhetoric of high ideals.

Vyasa sees horror piled upon horror; he sees the end of everything human; he sees the gathering darkness engulf the world.

This is Vyasa's prophetic vision on the eve of Kali-yuga, five thousand years ago. It spurs him into action. For Vyasa's appearance on the brink of this temporal decline is not fortuitous. Vyasa is an avatara, the empowered literary incarnation of God, sent by Krishna specifically to prepare the knowledge of Vedic civilization for transmission through the coming millennia of darkness.

Without such an undertaking, the erosion of human intelligence by the force of time would insure that all future generations would be completely cut off from their own cultural heritage and the matchless spiritual attainment of their forebears. Once the iron age began, they would not even realize that at one time the whole world had been governed by a single, supremely enlightened civilization: the Vedic culture.

So in the light of the current crisis what does Mahamuni Vyasadeva recommend? First and foremost, human society has to  understand the implications of animal slaughter and its consequences. Srila Prabhupada once said that if man opens mechanical slaughterhouses to indiscriminately kill animals then powerful material nature will open its own slaugherhouses in the form of war (and terrorist incidents) to kill men.

The government should take urgent steps to scientifically propagate god-consciousness and see that every faith scrupulously follows its rules and regulations. Every educated person should be trained in the simple art of Krishna consciousness – which begins with the chanting of the maha-mantra

Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna Hare Hare
Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare

Respiritualization of the entire society is the only solution to such crises.

– Syamananda Dasa