National Resurgence

(September 18, 1909, On Nationalism, pp.464-468)
Translated from the Bengali.

THE GREAT movement sweeping the country at present from the beginning been called by our British adversaries an outburst of hatred, and some Indians who are fond of imitating the English do not fail to echo this opinion. We are engaged in the propagation of dharma, and it is because the movement of national resurgence is a major part of this dharma that we are pouring our energy into it. Had this been a movement born of hatred, we would never have been so bold as to proclaim it a part of dharma. Conflict, war, even killing can be part of dharma, but hatred and malice lie outside of it. Hatred and malice are things that have to be eliminated in the march of the world's evolution, therefore those who nurture these impulses themselves or try to incite them in a nation fall prey to ignorance and give patronage to evil. We cannot affirm that hatred has never entered this movement. When one side indulges in animosity and hatred, the other side will inevitably react with similar feelings. The responsibility for starting this vicious circle lies with some English newspapers in Bengal and the conduct of certain arrogant, intemperate individuals. After enduring for a long time the contemptuous, spiteful, malicious language that appears every day in the newspapers, after suffering abuse, insults and even beatings on trains, in the street, in the market-place and on the ghats, finally even the patient, long- suffering Indian can tolerate it no more and has started returning abuse for abuse, blow for blow. Even many Englishmen have admitted that their fellow-countrymen are at fault and responsible for this wrong attitude. Besides, the rulers have for a long time made the serious blunder of acting in ways that hurt the interests of the people, cause dissatisfaction among them and wound their feelings. Man is naturally prone to anger; if his self-interest is injured, if he is faced with unpleasant conduct or if an object or idea close to his heart is outraged, this fire of anger, latent in all creatures, flares up and in that excess and blind rush of anger arise hatred and the conduct that springs from it. For a long time, due to the unjust behaviour and insolent speech of some Englishmen and the fact that in the present system of government the subjects have no real rights or power, discontent had been imperceptibly growing in the Indian heart. Finally during the rule of Lord Curzon this discontent assumed an acute form; the unbearable mortification of the Partition of Bengal aroused an extraordinary anger which flared up all over the country and, aggravated by the repressive policies of the rulers, turned into hatred. We admit that many, growing impatient with anger, have to a great extent added fuel to that fire of hatred; Very strange is the play of God! In his creation it is by the conflict between good and evil that the evolution of the world is conducted, yet often evil helps the good and brings about the positive result God intended. Even this supreme evil, the birth of hatred, has had.the good result that a fierce rajasic impulsion capable of awakening a vital strength has entered the Indian people who were sunk in tamas. But we cannot for that reason praise evil or the perpetrators of evil. Those who commit wrongful acts under the drive of rajasic egoism can by no means escape their responsibility and the binding consequences of their actions on the plea that these may further the good decreed by God. Those who spread racial hatred are making a mistake. The disinterested propagation of dharma is ten times more effective than spreading hatred and in this way, instead of cultivating adharma and consequently reaping the fruits of wrongdoing, one experiences a growth of dharma and the generation of unmixed good. Therefore we will not write anything that incites racial animosity and national hatred. We will also prohibit others from causing this kind of mischief. If a conflict of interests between nations arises or if it is an unavoidable aspect of the present situation, we are legally and morally entitled to. promote our own country's interests at the expense of the other country's. Where we find oppression or injustice, we are legally and morally entitled to comment severely on it, to confront it with our national strength and to pursue all possible legal means and recourses for its redress. If any individual, be he an agent of the foreign government or a countryman of ours, does or says anything harmful, unjust or unreasonable, we have the right to protest and criticise, exposing his actions or opinions to ridicule and censure, as long as we keep within the norms of decent social conduct. But we have no right either to cherish or to provoke malice or hatred against any nation or individual. If such a mistake was committed in the past, that belongs to the past. We must see that it does not recur in the future. This is our advice to all and especially to the nationalist newspapers and the youth active in the Nationalist Party.

The Aryan knowledge, the Aryan teaching, the Aryan ideals are quite different from those of the materialistic, vitalistic and hedonistic West.. According to the Europeans, action cannot be performed without the pursuit of pleasure and egoistic interest; conflict and war are not possible without hatred. They hold that either one has to work motivated by desire or else become a desireless ascetic and sit doing nothing. It is through the struggle for existence that the world has been created and its evolution achieved this is the fundamental tenet of their science. But since the days when the Aryans travelled from the Arctic region to the south and occupied the Punjab, they have possessed the eternal teaching which has earned them everlasting glory in this world. This teaching is that the universe is the habitation of a divine delight, Ananda, and that the omnipresent deity, Narayana, is conducting here his universal play for the manifestation of his Love, Truth and Power. For the purpose of the play he reveals himself in things animate and inanimate, in man and animal, worm and insect, in the saint and the sinner, in friend and in foe, in the god and the demon. Joy is for the play, sorrow for the play; sin is for the play, virtue for the play; friendship is for the play, enmity for the play; godhead is for the play, demonhood for the play. All friends and enemies are merely partners in the game; by dividing themselves into two sides they have created the ally and the adversary. The Aryan protects his friend and subdues his enemy, but he has no attachment. He sees Narayana everywhere, in all beings and things, in all actions and all results, and looks equally upon good and evil, friend and foe, joy and sorrow, sin and virtue, success and failure. This does not mean that he finds all outcomes good, that all men are his friends, all events pleasant to him, all actions worth doing, all results desirable. Until one has a complete realisation in Yoga, the dualities do not cease. Few are capable of reaching that state, but the Aryan teaching is the possession even of the ordinary Aryan. The Aryan seeks to achieve a good result and avoid undesirable consequences, but he is not intoxicated with victory if he succeeds nor is he dismayed if things turn out badly. Helping friends and defeating enemies may be objects of his endeavour, but he does not hate his enemies nor is he unjustly partial to his friends; if duty demands it, he is capable even of slaying his own people or sacrificing his life to save his enemy's. He prefers joy to sorrow, but he does not lose his poise in the midst of joy nor are his calm and content shaken by grief. He refrains from sin and cultivates virtue, but he is not puffed up with pride in his virtuous acts nor does he weep like a helpless child if he happens to lapse into sin. Laughing he gets up from the mire and, wiping the mud from his limbs, cleanses and purifies himself and resumes his effort towards self-perfection. The Aryan is capable of immense exertion for the success of his work, a thousand defeats cannot deter him, but to be saddened, dejected or disturbed by failure is contrary to his dharma. Of course, for one who is a master of Yoga and can act beyond the modes of Nature, the dualities cease to exist. Whatever work the Universal Mother may give, he does unquestioningly; whatever result she gives, he accepts with joy. He does the Mother's work with those she assigns to be his allies, he defeats or slays at her command those she designates as his adversaries. This is the Aryan teaching. In this teaching there is no place for hatred or animosity. Narayana is everywhere, so whom shall I hate or whom shall I despise? If we were to engage in a political movement along Western lines, antagonism and hatred would be inevitable and, from the Western point of view, legitimate since there is a conflict of interests. On one side is a national resurgence, on the other the attempt to suppress it. But our resurgence is not merely the resurgence of the Aryan race, it is the resurgence of the Aryan character, the Aryan teaching, the Aryan dbarma. In the first stage of the movement the Western political influence was very strong, yet even then we had realised this truth; the love and worship of the country as the Mother and a keen sense of Aryan pride prepared the dominant role of dharma in the second stage. Politics is part of dharma but it has to be practised in the Aryan way, using means sanctioned by the Aryan dbarma. We tell our youth, the hope of the future: if there is hatred in your hearts, root it out at once. Under the violent stimulation of hatred a momentary rajasic strength is easily aroused which soon collapses and turns into weakness. Go to those who have pledged themselves and dedicated their lives to the upliftment of the country, infuse in them an intense feeling of brotherhood, stubborn persistence, an iron steadfastness and a burning, fiery energy. Armed with that strength we shall have an indomitable force and be victorious for ever.