A Message For Renascent India
Sri Swami Sivananda
This article is from the book An Apostle of India’s Spiritual Culture.
SALUTATIONS to the Para-Brahman, the Absolute, and the grand galaxy of saints and sages who have delivered to the world from time to time the Lord’s message of Divine Life!
The time has come when India has to take her place at the head of the comity of nations as the spiritual leader and broadcast to humanity at large the message of Godliness which has been India’s spiritual heritage.
Sociology, politics, science, art, industry–every field of human activity and thought has, at its roots, MAN: and they are guided by man: they become constructive or destructive in the same measure as man’s inner nature is divine or demoniacal. And, it is India where is preserved the key to the opening up of the Divinity in man.
Nationalism is all right, so far as it goes; but the Indian has never allowed himself to be bound by any ties, however noble and pleasant they be. “Tat Tvam Asi“–“Sarvam Khalvidam Brahma“–“Everything in its essence is God Himself”–has been the song that the very blood of the Indian symphonises–the blood that is richly laden with the spirit of the great seers of yore.
The true Indian is not satisfied with anything mundane. The world is at best a shadow of the Divine. It does not ensnare the Indian. Maya cannot enslave him. He is beyond her clutches. He seeks to find God in everything. That is the true Indian! He goes beyond nationalism–he goes beyond internalism–he rests not content till all creation is brought to his heart in a fond embrace of divine universal love! He longs to realise his unity with the object of his love–the entire creation or Existence!
Svarajya has been won. But what about Atma Svarajya? Atma Svarajya is far more important than this political freedom! And, it is the duty of every true Indian to yearn to achieve that Atma Svarajya. Until every Indian strives to reach the heights of spirituality, and to meet his own illustrious ancestors in the realms of the Infinite, he still remains in chains. India is still shackled by ignorance! Shackles forged by the infiltration into her soil of Western culture, manners, ideas and ideals.
O Glorious Mother! Bharatamata! Thou hast given birth to mighty sages like Yajnavalkya, Nachiketas, Uddalaka and Svetaketu; to mighty spiritual heroines like Maitreyi, Gargi and Madalasa! Vasishtha, Vamadeva and Sri Sankaracharya were born of thee! Hast thou suddenly gone barren? How many children have you got at present who can walk with their head erect and say with pride: “I am an Indian?” You have filled your bosom with precious but imperfect caricatures of your glorious children: I say “precious” because even if they were born of your sweat, the glorious spirit of an Indian has been kept alive in them such indeed is thy indescribable splendour! When will you re-awaken your children to the true significance of being born an Indian? When will you feed them with the milk of Divine Wisdom?
O Indian! Arise!! Awake!!! You have not been brought into this world merely to ape the Westerner, merely to base your Government, your society and your family on the model of a materialistic, power-mad civilisation. You have a grander, an infinitely richer heritage! Seize it before you are completely disinherited.
O Indian! It is your proud privilege to teach the world the principles of Divine Life–nay, it is your duty! For, India is the very heart and soul of the world. Wake up! Give up this slumber of ignorance! It does not behove thee.
O Child of Bharatavarsha! Arise, awake, and blow the trumpet of Wisdom–“I am That”! “Thou art That”. Thou art not this perishable body, nor this pretentious mind, nor even this frail intellect of which the Westerner boasts so much. Money, position, power, fame, material prosperity and earthly glory will all vanish in the twinkling of an eye. Atom bombs will raze to the ground, in a second, cities and empires built over a period of centuries! All objects are perishable. Satchidananda alone will remain for ever. Thy very nature is Satchidananda. Blow, blow thy trumpet and say “I am Satchidananda Svarupa!”
O Indian, my brother! Come! The Mother calls you! Listen to her words of wisdom. Revive the glory of the Upanishads, which contain precious teachings which are the only panacea for all the ills of humanity. Follow the path laid out for you by your own ancient scriptures; and preach the tenets of true Hinduism to all! It is thy birth-right. Say: “I am the son of the Sages of Hind”.
O Child of Truth! It is your duty to set an example to the whole world! Lead the Divine Life of Ahimsa (love), Satya (truth) and Brahmacharya (self-control and purity). Serve all and love all. See the Lord or your own Self in all. Roar: “All this is my own Self–whom shall I hate and whom shall I fear? I love all and I serve all–for all beings are my own Self!”
O Hindu! Be thou the peasant or the Prime Minister, thou art the son of India and the duty rests on your shoulders to preserve the Hindu Dharma, Sanatana Dharma, which is based on universal love, true wisdom, righteousness, moral and ethical perfection. Follow not the ruinous path of materialism; turn back and once again hoist the flag of Hinduism–the all-embracing Religion of the Universe! Hinduism, in which is the message of Divine Life, universal love, tolerance, understanding, peace, bliss and wisdom! O Indian, arise, awake! Say boldly: “I am a Hindu. The American. the European, the Chinese, the Japanese, the Pakistani, every one belonging to every nation, caste, creed and colour–every human being is my brother!” Lead thy brothers, then, on the right path to peace and prosperity.
Gone, gone are the dark ages of misery, slavery and stupidity. India, the glorious Mother, the Mother of all, the Mother in whose bosom the Vedas lie shedding their lustre throughout the universe, in whose bosom lie the truths of the Upanishads illumining all our hearts–that Mother has awakened! Pray, Rejoice! Sing and dance in joy! The Mother has awakened, to awaken humanity to the true purpose of life, to bless humanity with peace, bliss and prosperity, to feed humanity with her milk of divine wisdom!
Heroes and heroines of Hind! Busy yourself in a thorough overhauling of your own self: for, the Mother has awakened and she would expect to see her children worthy of herself, strong, bold and spiritually illumined. Awake! Arise! Conquer humanity through love and wisdom and bring all under the cool shade of Indian culture–DIVINE LIFE.
May all be happy. May all prosper. May there be peace everywhere. May every one lead the Divine Life and realise eternal life, ineffable peace and perennial joy.