Sunday, December 23, 2007

Is there anyone today who cries “Mother, mother mine, mother great and free”?

India’s Independence and the Spiritual Destiny
by RY Deshpande on Sun 23 Dec 2007 06:02 AM PST Permanent Link
We must recognise that India is a land of richness, of plenty. She is rich in every respect. She is plenteous materially, vitally, mentally, spiritually. The Veda spoke of corn filled with milk in her fields. She is Bankim’s land of hurrying streams and bright orchard gleams, sujalām-suphalām. Here flourished great kingdoms, here flourished arts and sciences and crafts, here grew industry, commerce, trade. From here spread wisdom and knowledge all over the world. This has been the ancient land of tapasya.

India is rich
Even today India is rich in every respect. Indians may be poor but India is not poor. The soul of the country is as bright as the sun in a clear cloudless summer sky. But it is unfortunate that we do not live in it. We do not live in the brightness of that splendour, in its wonderful day. We do not know our own souls. We have lost contact with our inner being. We are sleeping the dark sleep of mediaeval ages. The unfortunate history of the last thousand years is weighing heavily on our mind and heart and body, on our spirit. But the backlash of time must be set aright. We must return to the foundational principles and values of our nation. We must see the causes, as to where exactly we had failed. We must awake to the call of Vivekananda, of Prabuddha Bharata, to the inspiration and message of Eternal India...
Where is authentic nationalism?
No wonder, we lack the spirit of authentic nationalism. No wonder we do not have our own programmes. We are ashamed of singing the National Anthem in the company of foreigners. We do not have our own priorities. No wonder that, we do not have our own science, our own literature, our own national life. There can be Indian life only when India recovers its Indianness. That is the imperative. When we Indians shall live according to the nation’s swabhāva and swadharma, then only will there be India’s happy fulfilment. Indians must know India. They shall prove the heroes who will steal the Promethean fire from the Hearth of the Spirit. We are looking for adventurers marching in celebration of the Truth. Only from the Fire of Sacrifice, National Yajna, can India rise to lead the countries of the world, assert herself in the march of mankind.

We do not have men “fit for the times”. But there is the expectation that the soul of the country shall awake. It shall arise from the Yajna of the Tapasvins. It shall arise like a radiant goddess. The ancient Rishis lived in the forests, but one-sixth of their tapasya went as a state tax for the welfare of the land. It is that which sustained every excellence of the society. We have to do that kind of national tapasya.

We Indians believe that everything should be done for us by the government. We do not tell what we are going to do for the country. We forget that religion is not a state subject; nor is education, nor can be arts and literature and sports and advancement of knowledge. Organisation of Art and Culture activities by a government office is a strange laughable matter. Never will a dynamic society allow these things to happen. A government’s concern should be governance. It is the society that has to build cultural foundations. It has to put forward progressive social aims. It has to generate awareness to fulfil its own longings. It must do things in the nobility of its creative-expressive spirit...
Humanity’s conscious participation
Our hope lies in being open to the subtler nuances of the working of the forces of life that operate always within and around us. In the totality of our approach we will have to perhaps move from the rational to the luminous intuitive modes and tools of knowledge and action. Fortunate we will be if we can accept, understand and apply what has been given to us by the Seer of the New Age. The vastness of Sri Aurobindo's vision embraces the human difficulties in their several dimensions and offers to them fulfilling solutions. The real problem of the society, as in the case of the individual, is for it to find its soul, the true collective soul. Certainly, it is that which alone can guide it on its evolutionary march towards the emergence of a spiritualised humanity. In its absence, the external ego-self is bound to prove to be a false light; this will also imply that excessive subjectivism of the crude vitalistic kind cannot but lead it to disintegration and destruction.
There has to be a conviction that, culmination of the social development into the Age of the ageless Spirit is the secret urge and motivating force behind the evolutionary Nature’s long painstaking and patient working. Humanity’s conscious participation in it will assuredly hasten this triumph and this glory. The soul of India has the intuition of perceiving these possibilities and India’s freedom is meant for its growth in the progression of the manifesting spirit. If this can be kept as the focus, the celebration of India’s sixty years of independence will then be truly significant...
[NB: The article was first published in the August-September 2007 issue of Mother India, A Monthly Review of Culture, published by Sri Aurobindo Ashram, Pondicherry. The periodical was celebrating the 60th Anniversary of India’s Independence.] Keywords: Yoga, Vedanta, Veda, Tagore, SriAurobindo, Spirituality, Review, Religion, Pondicherry, Poetry, Pakistan, Mysticism, Life, Krishna, India, History, Hinduism, Gita, Education, Culture, Ashram

No comments:

Post a Comment