Thursday, August 28, 2008

All forms of renunciation are to be embodied in Raja Dharma. Philosophers must be Kings

Dharma 401 - Extracts from Constituent Assembly Debates
Date: Wednesday, August 27, 2008 Time: 11:12 pm Category: Constituent Assembly, Dharma-debates Discussion: 0 Comments
Some extracts from the Constituent Assembly Debates on

Tuesday, the 22nd July 1947 Sir S. Radhakrishnan (United Provinces: General):
We cannot attain purity, we cannot gain our goal of truth, unless we walk in the path of virtue. The Asoka’s wheel represents to us the wheel of the Law, the wheel Dharma. Truth can be gained only by the pursuit of the path of Dharma, by the practice of virtue. Truth,-Satya, Dharma-Virtue, these ought to be the controlling principles of all those who work under this Flag. It also tells us that the Dharma is something which is perpetually moving. If this country has suffered in the recent past, it is due to our resistance to change. There are ever so many challenges hurled at us and if we have not got the courage and the strength to move along with the times, we will be left behind. There are ever so many institutions which are worked into our social fabric like caste and untouchability. Unless these things are scrapped we cannot say that we either seek truth or practise virtue. This wheel which is a rotating thing, which is a perpetually revolving thing, indicates to us that there is death in stagnation. There is life in movement. Our Dharma is Sanatana, eternal, not in the sense that it is a fixed deposit but in the sense that it is perpetually changing. Its uninterrupted continuity is its Sanatana character. So even with regard to our social conditions it is essential for us to move forward. The red, the orange, the Bhagwa colour represents the spirit of renunciation it is said:
(Sarve tyage rajadharmesu drsta). All forms of renunciation are to be embodied in Raja Dharma. Philosophers must be Kings. Our leaders must be disinterested. They must be dedicated spirits.’ They must be people who are imbued with the spirit of renunciation which that saffron, colour has transmitted to us from the beginning of our history. That stands for the fact that the World belongs not to the wealthy, not to the prosperous but to the meek and the humble, the dedicated and the detached. That spirit of detachment that spirit of renunciation is represented by the orange

Friday, the 5th November 1948
Shri H. V. Kamath: I only want one or two more minutes, Sir. ….. Now, what is a State for? The utility of a State has to be judged from its effect on the common man’s welfare. The ultimate conflict that has to be resolved is this: whetherthe individual is for the State or the State for theindividual……
India of the ages is not dead nor has she spoken her last creative word; she lives and has still something to do for herself and for the human family. And that which is now awake in India is not, I hope, an Anglicized or Europeanized Oriental people, docile pupil of the West and doomed to repeat the cycle of the Occident’s success and failure, but still the ancient invincible Shakti recovering Her deepest Self, lifting Her head higher towards the supreme source of light and strength, and turning to discover the complete meaning and a vaster form of Her Dharma. In that faith and fortified by that conviction, let us march forward into the future, and by the grace of God, victory will crown our efforts

Thursday, the 24th November, 1949 Shri Brajeshwar Prasad: …
If India is to remain loyal to her ancient traditions she must discard the basic foundations of this Constitution. Dharma was the basis of all Governments in ancient India. If the will of ignorant and hungry people were ever to become the basis of government in India, it will mean the complete liquidation of all that is good and noble in Indian life. The common man has got no will of his own. He is a bundle of instincts and a creature of environment and heredity. His will can never be the basis of modern Governments in any part of the world and especially in India where he suffers from innumerable handicaps. The concept of Dharma incorporates all that is good and noble in Parliamentarianism and rejects the evils that have crept into it. A State based on Dharma will never tolerate economic inequality or social injustice. But it will never accord recognition to popular will as the basis of Government. For the will of man is nasty, brutish and short. Dharma is in consonance with the fundamental principles of Democracy. The will to will the general will is the core of democracy.

Shri Har Govind Pant (United provinces : General):
According to the ancient order the primary aim of human life is the achievement of four Vargas. I need not say what place has been given to Dharma in our Constitution. When Dharma itself occupies a dubious place, it is all the more unnecessary to speak of Moksha. As for the remaining to Vargas, i.e. Artha and Kama, they have been properly provided for in the Constitution and everyone has been granted an equal right of their achievement. Ancient India accepted that man can achieve his good in both the worlds only through Dharma. Shri Vyas Deva says: ‘madhvarvahu viroumyevah nahi kashshat chunotimamdharmadiyarshcha kamashcha sa dharmahkinnasevyate’(with raised arm I declare it, but no one listen to me, that Dharma, Artha and Kama can be achieved through Dharma. Why not follow it?)
The happiness of all and the interests of society can be promoted only by following the path of Dharma. If we foresake it and go our own way, we cannot make the nation or the individual happy.

Monday, the 6th December 1948
Shri H. V. Kamath (C. P. & Berar: General):
Sir, let me not be misunderstood. When I say that a State should not identify itself with any particular religion, I do not mean to say that a State should be anti-religious or irreligious. We have certainly declared that India would be a secular State. But to my mind a secular state is neither a God-less State nor an irreligious nor an anti-religious State.)
Now, Sir, coming to the real meaning of this word`religion’, I assert that `Dharma‘ in the most comprehensive sense should be interpreted to mean the true values of religion or of the spirit. `Dharma‘, which we have adopted in the crest or the seal of our Constituent Assembly and which you will find on the printed proceedings of our debates: (”Dharma Chakra pravartanaya”)–that spirit, Sir, to my mind, should be inclucated in the citizens of the Indian Union. If honourable Members will care to go just outside this Assembly hall and look at the dome above, they will see a sloka in Sanskrit:
“Na sa Sabha yatra na santi vriddha
Vriddha na te ye na vadanti dharmam.”
That `Dharma‘, Sir, must be our religion. `Dharma‘ of which the poet has said.
Yenedam dharyate jagat (that by which this world is supported.)
That, Sir, which is embodied which is incorporated in the great sutras, the Mahavakyas of our religions, in Sanskrit, in Hinduism, the Mahavakya `Aham Brahma Asmi’, then `Anal Haq’ in Sufism and `I and my Father are one’–in the Christian religion–these doctrines, Sir, if they are inculcated and practised to-day, will lead to the cessation of strife in the world. It is these which India has got to take up and teach, not merely to her own citizens, but to the world. It is the only way out for the spiritual malaise,in which the world is caught today, because the House will agree, I am sure, with what has been said by the Maha Yogi, Sri Aurobindo, in one of his famous books, where he says:
“The master idea that has governed the life, the culture, social ideals of the Indian people has been the seeking of man for his true, spiritual self and the use of life as a frame and means for that discovery and for man’s ascent from the ignorant natural into the spiritual existence.”
I am happy, Sir, to see in this Assembly today our learned scholar and philosopher, Prof. Radhakrishnan. He has been telling the world during the last two or three years that the malaise, the sickness of this world is at bottom spiritual and therefore, our duty, our mission, India’s mission comes into play

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