Getting inspiration to innovate

As per ( survey 2016) 80 % of the 501 million strong workforce in India is dissatisfied. They are looking for a change. Of this 60% are from the middle level and 40% are from the senior level profiles. Of this 80%, (according to LinkedIn Report), 63% are finding a lack of opportunity for growth and self-expression in their current jobs. Many cite a lack of challenge in their job as the main reason for dissatisfaction. Every one of us is made to contribute in a unique way to our society and nation at large. Variety is the mother of enjoyment. Imitation of someone else will not bring us lasting satisfaction.

In today’s world, innovation is the primary driver for progress. Most of the today’s billionaires are innovators from Google to Microsoft to Amazon. Disrupting and innovative industries are reshaping the economy and performing stronger than ever before. [2020 Billionaire Insights Report from Swiss Bank] This is a key moment in economic history. Scientists, computer programmers and engineers are revolutionizing industries at a pace never seen before and they are having a profound impact on the whole of the global economy.

From AI to 3D printing, from nanotechnology to biotechnology, scientists and serial entrepreneurs are only just beginning to apply and develop radically new products and services that have the potential to reshape the global economy and create tens, or even hundreds of thousands of new jobs. Both from an individual and collective level, innovation is the key to satisfaction, performance and progress. In the global innovation index 2021 [published by Bloomberg], India ranks 48th with China in 16th and South Korea in 1st.  China spends 12 times that of India in R&D. India only spends 0.69% of its GDP in R&D.

The key factor to start an innovation is to choose the right field for innovation. Many startups fail because of making a wrong choice of field. Every one of us is gifted uniquely to contribute to a certain field of knowledge. We are innately equipped to take risks, to face challenges and go on despite challenges and make contributions in a particular field – be it engineering, management, art, literature, research, hospitality and many more. Everyone in every field has a place in the big picture. To find this right field, we need inspiration and education but not imitation and indoctrination in the guise of education. We need to identify two things – (i) what are our inclinations and talents  and (ii) how and where in the world around us, we can put those talents in action. Therefore we have to connect to with ourselves in a broader and deeper way and we have to connect with the world around us in a broader and deeper way.

If we deeply look within ourselves, we find that we have a set of abilities, inclinations that are consistent throughout our current worldly sojourn. These are covered our by a layer of fleeting emotions, expectations etc. If we want to understand ourselves properly and completely, we need to penetrate beyond our unsteady mind – the storehouse of fleeting thoughts and emotions.  Despite centuries of research and experience, modern medicine does not have a definite solution for this. The time tested wisdom of Bhagavad Gita has a solution for this. Bhagavad Gita broadly classifies the individuals into four types – intellectual, administrative, entrepreneurial and artistic.[BG 4.13]

 It delineates their roles and their socio-economic contributions to the society. Gita presents us with this holistic perspective to look at ourselves. But it does not end there. This is the beginning. It provides us the way by practicing which we can perceive ourselves beyond the mind. That is the path of yoga. Yoga helps us to harness our mind power for our benefit and benefitting the world and ultimately attain lasting satisfaction. [BG 6.15]

In this way Gita helps us to discover our gifted abilities through which we can innovate. It gives us the science and the way to put the science into practice.

Even if we know what our abilities are, we need to know where to apply them. For that we need to connect to the world, how it works, the principles behind it and its purpose. When we see at something with a hedonistic mindset, our vision becomes narrowed down. To broaden our vision, we need to broaden our mindset and motives. Again Bhagavad Gita comes to our aid, it helps us in transforming the way we see the world. [BG 7.2]

This may appear theoretical but the history of innovation bears witness to this time tested fact.

The greatest innovators and physicists like Issac Newton, Copernicus and Galilieo are originally natural philosophers. They wanted to study the divinity of nature and how divinity acts through nature. The original innovation and research sprouted from spirituality. Newton spent a major part of his life in theological study. His scientific exploration and innovation was an outcome of his spirituality. Not just past but all the more in present Jeff Weiner, CEO of LinkedIn, William Clay Ford, CEO of Ford etc practice spirituality.

Therefore spirituality plays an vital role in identifying our ability to innovate and find out the right area where we can innovate which are very fundamental to an aspiring innovator.


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