Sri Swami Sivananda
This article is from the book World Peace.
The cause of quarrels, fights and war is ignorance. Selfishness, greed, pride, egoism, hatred are all born of ignorance. They are products or modifications of ignorance. He who has realised oneness of life, unity of consciousness will never engage himself in strife or quarrel.
Only removal of ignorance can stop all future wars and dissensions. Spiritual culture, ethical education, measures that are best calculated to instill love and a sense of unity in men and women can prevent nations from resorting to war.
Every man or woman should have a clear and comprehensive understanding of the goal or purpose of life. All people should get spiritual training and ethical culture.
Spiritual universities and Yoga institutions should be started in all parts of the world.
The Sannyasins, Yogins, Mahatmas, Mandaleswars, Bhagavatas of India should start a vigorous, organised propaganda. Only they can set matters right, they alone can create a new era and a world order. They alone can create a new spiritual atmosphere of peace. They alone can think calmly and handle the situation. They are selfless people. They have no selfish motives. They live for the well-being of humanity. They should be given a free hand in the shaping of the destiny of the world of the present day. They will render all possible help to effect peace and unity.
Spiritual organisation of Sadhus and Sannyasins is very necessary. This work must be started now.
Presidents and Prime Ministers of the world States must have good training in Yoga and study Vedanta. They should be pious, God-fearing, kind and merciful. They should all lead a divine life. Then only can they do good to their people and the world at large. They should come to India for training in Yoga. If all people begin to religiously practise Yama, kindness and mercy, how can they at the same time stand with weapons and guns in their hands to destroy each other?
Any international league or pact or treaty without a spiritual basis will totally fail to bring about lasting peace and happiness for the world. War will again break out after some time with redoubled vigour and increased hatred, more machine-guns and aeroplanes will be manufactured.
All people should become vegetarians. That will help them to grow in spirituality and practise Yoga and ethics.
Akhanda Kirtan Centres must be started in all parts of the world. All people should practise common meditation and prayers in the early morning hours. Scriptures that treat of Bhakti, Yoga and Vedanta must be studied by all. These books should be introduced in all schools and colleges of the world. Study of Sanskrit must also be made compulsory.
Students should he trained in Karma Yoga or selfless service.
Sadhana weeks should he conducted twice or thrice a year in each spiritual centre. Every town must have a spiritual centre. Sannyasins should become advisers to Government. They should guide the Presidents and Prime Ministers.
Nations neglect to lead the divine life. They forget all about the teachings of Lord Jesus’s Sermon on the Mount. Hence they are more materialistic and forgetful of their essential divine nature. This is the real cause of all wars.
There should be several Yogic Research Institutes. There whole time aspirants should lead a life of pure meditation and research into their own selves.
The world should be flooded with spiritual bulletins and literature and Yoga magazines.
If the above measures are put into practice, you will have a real heaven on earth. There will be Satya Yuga or Rama Rajya again. There will be no necessity for building aeroplanes or making machine-guns.
Remove suspicion, hatred, ill-will, jealousy, selfishness. Establish peace in your heart by meditating on the ever peaceful self or Atma, who dwells in the chambers of your heart. Then only will you be able to establish peace in the world. Individual peace alone can lead to the establishment of universal peace.
You have already witnessed the horrors of wars. When all the dear relations have perished, when the whole land is devastated, when the resources of the country have been drained, how can there be happiness when one begins to rule?
May there be peace, plenty and prosperity throughout the whole world! May all nations be united by the bond of love! May you all recognise the oneness of life!