Friday 1 July 2016

India's Mission

From the very remote past India has developed a culture which has reconciled worldly prosperity with the Highest Good abhyudaya with nishsreyasa. When India was spiritually great she was also materially prosperous. Throughout her history she has stressed charity, non-violence, self-control, and other spiritual virtues. She has often sacrificed material power in pursuit of higher ideals.  She has valued inner wisdom and peace more than the knowledge and excitement of the outer world. Her saints and philosophers have shown how to sublimate material enjoyment (bhoga) into communion with the infinite (yoga). Wealth (artha) and sense-pleasure (kama), if based upon dharma (righteousness), ultimately confer on the spirit liberation from bondage to matter (moksha). Material enjoyment based on sheer competition ultimately brings boredom and has no spiritual-value.  Today many people in Europe and America ask whether, with the growth of science and technology, resulting in increased physical comfort, India will not so much stress renunciation, Nirvana, and the futility of rebirth.


But a Buddha or a Swami Vivekananda did not renounce the world and set forth in quest of the Eternal because he was poor or frustrated in life? At a certain stage of evolution every soul revolts against the finite view of life and seeks communion with the Infinite. 'That which is infinite is alone happiness.' The West, saturated with material enjoyment, will one day seek spiritual light, and may very well seek Indian wisdom for guidance. May India not fail in rising to the expectations of the world.


India's future mission was anticipated by Swami Vivekananda. He envisaged the greatness of the India to come as surpassing the glories of Her past. The country that has produced, in an uninterrupted line, illumined souls from the Vedic seers to Ramakrishna cannot remain stagnant, far less disintegrate.


However much we may learn from the outside world, the broad paths of our national progress have been chalked out by our saints and seers. Their purpose will be fulfilled if Indians, both men and women, dedicate themselves to the allround welfare of India's common man, the most pressing need of our time, and for its realization pledge their life, liberty, and sacred honour.


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