The Yoga of a Nation Called India

The Paradox called India

It would be a tragic irony of fate if India were to throw away her
spiritual heritage at the very moment when in the rest of the world
there is more and more a turning towards her for spiritual help
and a saving Light. This must not and will surely not happen,
but it cannot be said that the danger is not there.
Sri Aurobindo – 26:p.412


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These are times of transition when we are moving from one Age to another or to put it more succinctly from the Age of Kali to the Age of Satya. The gift of Kali was man’s discovery of the secrets of our material existence. It was an Age when all else was veiled as if by a thick iron curtain except our physical self. As a deft surgeon working upon one part of our body covers up the rest with a thick clean sheet so that his vision and mind are not distracted so did the operations of Kali draped our with the thick sheet of Ignorance so that nothing was visible to us except our physical bodies. Our mind was anesthetized or rather hypnotized into believing that there was nought else save our material universe and its forces and man’s sole business was to survive and protect himself physically against the threat of other forms of physical life and of course by physical means. But as we walk into the New cycle where a greater Truth dawns upon man, we wake up slowly from our swoon to a New Light and with it to new seekings and a renewed labour. Therefore we have today very clearly two seemingly opposite and conflicting tendencies driving man or rather pulling him in apparently different directions though albeit towards the same end of a grand synthesis of human existence itself. These two tendencies can be broadly considered for want of a better term, – the material and the spiritual. The material pull and attraction for physical betterment, comfort, etc is the remnant of our immediate past. It is the strong hold of Kali rooting our consciousness into the very physical stuff of things. On the one side this rooting into the physical has grounded us well into the body preventing an easy exit out of the physical universe, testing and retesting everything on the crucible of the physical and its power to change the physical world even as turning our gaze to earth and terrestrial aims providing a strong foothold on material life and material things. To make its task perfect ad easier, in this Age of Kali that we leave behind us a veil is put upon the mother of wisdom, mother India, so that the world is not blinded by her intense Light and leaving the work upon earth too soon and incomplete vanish into some beyond of Nirvana and Bliss. But the side-effect of this prolonged engagement with matter is that we have been led into a state of hypnosis that fails to see or recognize anything but matter and judges everything by material appearances alone. But on the other side we are being slowly pulled out of our slumber with new openings and new discoveries and new powers waking up out of matter’s sleep. There is an increasing interest, the world over in powers of life as is evident in the emergent systems of alternate energy healing such as Reiki, in powers of mind with biofeedback, guided imagery, creative visualization, mind-body medicine, psychoneuroimmunology coming into the forefront of human play. The authentic spiritual powers are yet waiting in the dusk of transition while their mental and vital dupes are being sold in marts of an imitative spirituality. That India has a great role to play in this new emergence is beyond question since it is India that has traditionally been the guardian of the keys to the doors of the Spirit. But whether India will take the definitive lead in this matter and instead of being continuously hypnotized with the physical and vital aspects of existence that Kali magnified no end, it will dehypnotize itself and the world and show once more the ways of the Spirit, or else throw away this golden chance and opportunity and go the way the rest of the world goes tumbling on its head towards a progressive sinking into the oblivion of the atomic void is the still unanswered question.

When we look at the surface the appearances are no doubt dismal. What problem of the world has not been given as more than fair share of India’s destiny? Its very rebirth in modern times has been a fractured one. And then the two important aspects that are necessary for a nation’s outer growth, – wealth and power have been usurped by the Asura in man. Cutting across party lines the managers of the nation stand united in corruption and legalised loot. Of deception they have made a decent profession and falsehood lurks in every corridor of the high and mighty where decisions of crucial importance are being taken. The forces of division still continue to divide us along lines of language, caste, religion and all the rest and are even craftily hidden under cover of acceptable names such as social justice, equality, secularism, tradition, and all the rest that men use as a shield to hide their evil intentions. This combined with the unconscious masses driven blindly by the whip of fear and passion, while the rest loathing with greed and given to crudity in every form makes an ugly sight to watch. It is as if the devil had adopted its most diabolic strategy to subvert the truth that is to join its bandwagon as a helper and loot it on the way rather than openly oppose it.

Injustice justified by firm decrees
The sovereign weights of Error’s legalised trade,
But all the weights were false and none the same;

…In high professions wrapped self-will walked wide
And licence stalked prating of order and right:
There was no altar raised to Liberty;
True freedom was abhorred and hunted down:
Harmony and tolerance nowhere could be seen;
Each group proclaimed its dire and naked Law.
A frame of ethics knobbed with scriptural rules
Or a theory passionately believed and praised
A table seemed of high Heaven’s sacred code.
A formal practice mailed and iron-shod
Gave to a rude and ruthless warrior kind
Drawn from the savage bowels of the earth
A proud stern poise of harsh nobility,
A civic posture rigid and formidable.
But all their private acts belied the pose:
Power and utility were their Truth and Right,

…Inconscient traders in bundles of contraries,
They did what in others they would persecute;
When their eyes looked upon their fellow’s vice,
An indignation flamed, a virtuous wrath;
Oblivious of their own deep-hid offence,

…A zealot fervour pushed their ruthless cults,
All faith not theirs bled scourged as heresy;
They questioned, captived, tortured, burned or smote
And forced the soul to abandon right or die.
Amid her clashing creeds and warring sects
Religion sat upon a blood-stained throne.
A hundred tyrannies oppressed and slew
And founded unity upon fraud and force.

…A lie was there the truth and truth a lie.
Savitri, SABCL 28-29, p 209

Not to speak of poverty and population and a host of illnesses and natural disasters. It is as if the spirit of Time had collected the bundle of unsolved problems of the human race since man’s quest and struggle began beneath the stars. It is as if the great and ancient adversary force met the “burdened great” to test its strength to suffer and to save. It is as if the gods sanctioned the paradox that the bringer of Light must be thrust into the densest darkness to heal the abyss and the valleys of death with the deathless Light and the flowers of an unfailing courage and faith. It is as if the child of an adverse fate questioned the great mother to reveal her wisdom to the world not just theoretically but practically. It is as if the body and mind of the mighty nation called India had become the field of the world’s inner conflicts and its deepest afflictions for so alone could a cure be found.

But these are appearances and one can see behind them the deeper forces that work through contraries to hasten the ultimate fulfillment. It is indeed a distortion of the work of these deeper forces as their action and push rises to the surface and is mistranslated by our outer mind. The forces of destruction work in the depths to remove the accretions of the past and its errors and conditioning and forms that have become lifeless and empty and we see on the surface wanton rage and destruction and rebel and revolt and disbelief and cynicism a loss of faith in the sacred sense of things. The forces of preservation work in the depths to keep safe the essential spirit and deep foundations of truth on which India has to be rebuilt and we see on the surface a blind clinging to traditions and conventions and religious formulas of old that have become a lifeless ritual. The forces of creation work in the depths to release new powers for growth and progress and we see on the surface the search for novelty and attraction for fashion and new age experimentations in every sphere of life and action. It is indeed a veritable yoga of the nation going on. But in India it has taken a very different hue and dimension. For, to begin with India’s great and glorious past is at once an advantage and a disadvantage. It is an advantage because the inner being of India is largely prepared to undertake the hardships that one needs to take for a high and difficult path. It has so to say the necessary inner qualities such as trust, faith in the Divine, devotion, surrender, and an innate ability to sense and feel spiritual things. It has a natural spiritual bent so to say. But the disadvantage is that over the past few centuries India has been following a very different form of Yoga. It had engaged itself in a very world-negating spiritual endeavour and that has somehow seeped very deep into the India psyche. It has neglected the outer life in a terrible way, and therefore it finds itself miserable almost helpless when dealing with outer life and mundane problems of existence. It has hardly a hold over matter and the impulse of life to flow through earth and enrich its floors and cut its way through mire and stone. Its streams turn upward or else as a reaction downward. Yet this is no permanent disadvantage since it is not a native Indian temperament but an encrustation, something superimposed upon it or perhaps deliberately accepted by it as a defence against an excess influence of the Age of Kali. The native Indian temperament is however as much attached to earth as anywhere else. And that is what creates an imbalance in the India temperament. The Indian suffers a greater conflict than any other because it experiences both the spiritual hunger and the material hunger much more intensely. He feels his sorrows and his passions, his emotions and his impulses much more intensely. This in itself would not be so much of a problem but the difficulty is that the Indian whatever and wherever he may be, he also feels the spiritual impulse much more acutely and strongly in him. But his mind unable to integrate these diverse elements finds itself in a quandary. He finds it difficult to focus fully either on the material or on the spiritual aspect of life. The result is that an average Indian becomes a hypocrite adopting two standards, one for his private life and another for his public posture.

The other difficulty is that the Indian experiment has been largely a collective one. The importance given to collective life and its lesser child social life is much more that to the individual. Everything here has been organized into groups, beginning from family lineages to religious sects. And we have entered an Age of individualism when each one must find his own truth. This kind of individualism is not natural to the Indian temperament. And yet the sad truth is that what India most lacks in its outer life is the sense of collective discipline. This paradox has been created partly because the sense of a national identity has not yet fully dawned upon the Indian mind which is so used to living in smaller groups such as clans, castes, religious groups. But the deeper reason for this paradox is again the neglect of the physical life. For when it comes to psychological aspects the Indian can be fairly disciplined and even austere in his approach but when it comes to the physical he is most neglectful and wasteful. Therefore a contact with the western spirit and even its strong influence is perhaps necessary for the moment and part of Nature’s plan that is going to benefit both. The Indian Diaspora migrating to the West is infusing the Indian Spirit and awakening the soul of nations while coming in contact with the west it is learning some lessons in material life and organizing outer existence as well as something of the value of an individual. This is an important preparation for all since we are fast entering an Age when spirituality will involve the entire earth and it will by its nature integrate the material life and outer existence. For this very reason it is important for nations across the world to keep a living contact and a healthy interchange with India since it is by such a contact that the spiritual impulse can awaken in other parts of the world. This is so very evident when we travel round the globe that one can easily say without any exaggeration that the spiritual gift of India to the world has already begun. And in return for this priceless gift the soul of India is learning to accommodate matter and deal with physical things.

But there is yet another reason for this dichotomy between India’s inner being and its outer life. Because if its rich diversity and immense complexity, because of its past experience in spirituality as well as in organizing collective life on a spiritual basis, India is especially suitable to be the priest of the sacrifice in this New Yoga of transformation that is being given to the world. But precisely for this reason the normal ordinary means of organizing national life are unlikely to succeed here. If insisted by short sighted politicians then the deeper possibility of India and with it of the world may well get frustrated and stifled. The ordinary mental and moral methods, the normal means of regulating and perfecting outer life through an increasing mechanization, law and governmental machinery would not work here. The inner being of this nation is far too complex for any over simplistic solution as some impatient well-wishers would suggest. Its solutions for life problems cannot come from the mind, from the level of the thinker but from the very fount of life, from deeper feelings, from the soul of the nation. The cut and dried formulas of a rational system do not work because something higher than reason and more durable than mind has to be found and it is not easy. Yet India can find it and if India cannot then perhaps no nation in the world can. But this need not happen. Already we can see the first beginnings. The offshoots of Indian spirituality are beginning to find world over application in the field of management, health, science, art-forms, mathematics etc. In the field of education there is an increasing recognition to touch some deeper core of the child. Law and administration and politics and business though are yet far from yielding.

The Yoga of a Nation called India

What India needs most is not just a national reconstruction but a national yoga. For along what lines are we going to construct a new India if we have not the vision to reconstruct, — along the lines of western polity and science that revels in well-polished external surfaces and a crafty manipulation of outward things while the inner being remains hollow, lackluster, struggles and suffers since stifled by appearances. Or along the lines of our own native genius that built such a mighty nation once by the ancient power of yoga, that it has resisted millenniums of shocks, invasions, subjugation and calamities. True, its centuries of struggle, especially in the past few hundred years have made it weary and tired. Its resistance against foreign invasions and influences has hardened into fixed tradition its own fluid adaptability to evolutionary forces. But these are momentary lapses and temporary setbacks. The Indian genius will bounce back and rediscover the splendours of the spirit and restore the true glory of life by connecting it to its divine origin. That is India’s unique and difficult and dangerous task fulfilling which it will fulfill its highest destiny. And failing which it will frustrate itself and frustrate the world in its attempt to create a new world order.

The national yoga of India had indeed started in 1905 when goaded by the forces of division the cry of ‘Bande Mataram’ rang through India’s heart. It was an invocation not only to the Soul of India but also to the World-Mother, Shakti of the Supreme, to come and manifest in the land of India, to liberate it from error, falsehood and division; to awaken it out of its tamas and darkness in which it had sunk deep. This was and still is the initiating mantra of this nation. Its aspiration, — ‘poorna swaraj’, a perfect self-conquest, self-mastery, self-rule; its path, — satyameva jayate, victory to the Truth, a constant choice of the growing Truth over the falsehoods of our mental, vital, physical nature. The World-Mother did arrive in India, in her physical embodiment, but few recognized her. Her coming from the western world towards the east was itself a clear indication that while the drama of the previous millennium, the Age of rational enlightenment, was played out with Europe as its center, the next Act of Her creative play would be played out in the east with India as the main stage. The path of Truth, satya pantha did open up and the boon of poorna swaraj brought close to our trembling hands but our limbs were weak to receive it. India responded to the descending Light of Truth first with a flurry of rajasic activity engaged in acts of petty violence driven often by a blind sentimental patriotic fervour. As was inevitable, this force soon spent and exhausted, the nation lapsed into tamoguna again with the few elements embodying the sattwic impulse and the spirit of authentic sacrifice carrying the flag further. That freedom came still was a boon and a grace, indeed the result of a silent tapasya of Sri Aurobindo who had indeed initiated the nation and awakened its aspiration. But as happens, the sattwic and rajasic elements took the credit and went on to glorifying their own greatness refusing to see the Hand of the Eternal, refusing to listen to the voice of the prophet of Life Divine and the true progenitor of Indian nationalism. The story of Pandavas believing themselves to be the cause of the victory; the story of the gods narrated in the Kenā Upanishad believing theirs is the victory was repeated again. And once again the Eternal had to break our Sattwic and Rajasic egoism so that kneaded as dough by the divine Hands we may become supple and pliant to the Light that has dawned and is already active upon earth.

A long period of preparation must now intervene, the period when Pandavas are repeatedly exiled from the Kingdom and the Kauravas loot the nation and enjoy the booty. Yet this too is grace for when we refuse to wake up to the call of the flute and rush to join the dance of Krishna, then we need to hear the world-shaking, world-destroying laughter of Kali. For the purification must be as thorough as the crown of victory that we seek. Therefore we see broken again like helpless reeds even the strong and the mighty, slain with their dreams buried under their eyelids. For these are dreams of men who wish to see in India only a show of military strength, political power, and the rupee swaying the world market in a swoon of luxury and comfort. But wherefore is her greatness born only for these perishable gifts. These boons of the vital gods creating an imitation of heaven upon earth, luring us with false glimmers towards a blinding abyss are not for India. These boons are for lesser hearts, for nerves that tire too soon, minds that are entrapped in the hedge of the senses, and its charmed fragrances. India has asked for more and therefore India must meet with a much greater challenge. For it is subtle law of life that the difficulties we meet are in proportion to our capacities and the scope of our destiny. India has lived through the ages to deliver a greater Light to the world and therefore greater must be the darkness that it must slay and deeper the abyss that it must fill with the Light and heal. For this too is a subtle law of life that the higher the prize we demand the greater must be our endurance and the obstacles to conquer. India lives to deliver not only itself but the world, therefore must India be riddled with all the problems and must become symbolic of all the representative difficulties of the world. For this too is a subtle law of our growth that the wider we grow in our consciousness, our own being begins to take a more and more universal character, both in terms of the possibilities and also in terms of the difficulties. The little pool of clear reflecting water with a garden around it may be an idler’s dream to rest and relax but mighty spirits born to tame the sea must be prepared to meet the whales and the sharks, to rise with the billowing waves and fall into the blue deeps till one day they make the storms their companions and delight in the strong piercing gaze of the sun-god, and the tossing manes of the wind-gods. That which lesser hearts dread and fear, the strong must meet and conquer and bear.

This rather long period of preparatory purification is a threefold process. First is the period when the nation must confront its unique as well as universal problems. It must come face to face and acknowledge not only problems of the present moment but those buried deep into its own and the earth’s subconscient memory. Next, it must try the various physical, vital, mental ways to solve them and, needless to add, fail. Finally as a result of the growing pressure within and outside it must perforce seek its own true identity and in the process end up finding its national soul. The first part of this process is nearly over, the next is going on even as we are beginning to have the first few glimpses of the third. It is interesting to note that the question of a national identity is being raised before the Indian nation through various means and circumstances. And during the first anniversary of India’s spiritual new birth, that is the year 2005 (the anniversary of Bande Mataram) it was made clear that the issue of our national identity is far from being settled. True, our impatient hearts may find this long period of preparation painful and indeed it is long compared to human lifespan. But truth cannot be seen by impatient eyes, tamatmastham yenu pasyanti dheera, nor felt by nerves that succumb under duress and shatter under pressure of adverse circumstances. And what are fifty years or even a hundred and a five hundred years but its growth from childhood into adolescence moving into youth. Those would serve India’s interest best who can thus grow vast, who can look beyond the immediate gains into the deeper forces that are at work and the Light that is slowly but steadily emerging from its depths.

We must therefore understand that the task of reconstructing India is not an easy one and there are no quick-fix solutions as our childish minds may rush to suggest. Firstly India is not a new nation. It had many lives and as happens with souls that have lived many a lives, the Indian temperament has become exceedingly complex. This happens because several layers of states of consciousness and memories pile up in its subconscient and subliminal layers with complex knots of karmic energies that needs to be disentangled, worked out, discover each their own truth, reintegrated with the whole in the Light of a greater Truth. This is no easy task even for an individual what to speak of a nation. Unlike other nations, the Indian psyche is very complex and lives at many levels at the same time. It is reflected even in its physical components. The Space Age mingles here with the Stone Age; the jet aircraft and the bullock cart exist in the same city and, the Vedas are recited in the same quarters as where the complex atomic problems are being tackled in the light of the discoveries of modern physics. Deep inside India is always spiritual, it has an innate intelligence that is subtle and plastic but there has also gathered as a result of its recent past experiences the rule-book mind and the school-master mentality. Such a method cannot work with India; its nature is too complex to accept it. The impersonal law, the dictat of a faceless government is too unimaginative to the Indian mind that has peopled its inner worlds with gods and demons. It is much more likely to observe a religious authority, obey the command of a spiritual master, even do an extraordinary sacrifice in a fit of emotional and religious fervour, or else logically analyse and think out for itself what it should do or should not do in a certain situation than simply follow a rule because some government made it legal. This applies for simple things like observing traffic rules to filing I.T. returns truthfully and honestly. The sense of government, the idea of legal binding and political unity of the kind practiced in the world is difficult to take root here. The Indian will readily unite for sentimental, religious, cultural and social reasons than for the sake of law and administration for its own sake. He acts either because moved by some vital interest or deep emotion or a logical thought or else a soul motivation. In either case, as is true for most complex beings, he must find his locus standii inside.

This complexity of the Indian temperament creates another difficulty. His being is like a melting pot of many things, — sacred and profane. He is moved by passion, struck by emotions, haunted by logicising and philosophizing reason, attracted by vital charm yet long periods of asceticism create in him a poor hold on outer life. He is drawn to soul depths, yet holds parleys with the demons at night. The gods and the djinns both visit him in his dreams and therefore the Indian often experiences more internal conflict, becomes less focused not because of any deficiency of concentration but rather because he has too many internal things to handle which prevent him from being one-pointed. He has many simultaneous goals that are often self-contradictory, from making a quick and huge buck to solving his family problems and emotional issues to satisfying his social expectations, enjoying a quiet time with friends as well as spending time in isolated contemplation on cosmic problems that may not concern him at all. He loses a lot of creative energy in internal conflicts and therefore take a long time to succeed outwardly in anything. But once he has worked out a path through the complex maze of his inner nature, his victory is much more complete, stable and enduring. And he arrives at this stability and victory by finding his spiritual reference point. The Light of a Buddha, the word of Krishna, the call of Vivekananda, the cry of the Vedas, the myths and legends of the Puranic literature, the fascination of Sanskrit and many such high achievements have not only endured but continue to grow and inspire mankind. The greatest of Indian empires were built and governed in a spiritual mood; its greatest works of art and science and polity and law inspired by its spiritual genius. Even as many empires fell and vanished, great traditions collapsed or are on their decline and in the passing, the Indian shine still endures and its light though covered with the dust of centuries still attracts and illumines. By his very nature and temperament the Indian lives in large spaces of time. He is more subjective, imaginative, and personal than objective, concretely real and impersonal. Therefore he lacks the killer instinct though not for that matter the survival instinct. In fact the latter is more developed, the adaptability to foreign atmospheres much more, the ability to take defeat as a passage rather than a permanent failure, — the resilience factor, quite developed. On the one hand it snatches away from him the do-or-die mentality and the sense of urgency and expediency or for that matter a thing as simple as punctuality. But in return it arms him with an endurance and forbearing perseverance that is useful in the long run. The yoga of the Indian nation has to carve its way through this uniqueness of the Indian temperament; it cannot be otherwise.

There are however two more difficulties that the national soul must tackle which are like the obverse and reverse side of a single problem before it can be fit for national yoga. It comes from its more recent past of a couple of thousand years whence India lost the original Vedas in its heart and replaced it with a dubious script of other-worldly salvation, moksha, mukti, nirvana as the primary goal and the abrupt closing end of the creative delight of God. This has led to a loss of hold over physical reality and the world of concrete matter. But almost as a counterbalancing force, centuries of asceticism have suddenly led to a return of the suppressed elements and impulses with a vengeance. It is necessary for India to come to grips with these things. When God wants us to make a lasting progress He brings us face-to-face with that which must be truly conquered and not simply escaped from, bypassed or suppressed. This we see happening today. The quarrel of the castes, the disputes of sects, the dogmas of religion, the hidden attraction to the lower vital impulses, the roots of division and falsehood and unconsciousness buried deep into the subconscious parts are suddenly emerging before the nation’s waking mind and taking the form of one problem or the other. These problems are not unique to India but their intensity is felt most acutely here. For the role of India is to be the spiritual guru of the world and to befit this role as a true spiritual leader it must carry upon its shoulders not only its own but the cross of the world. The unsolved or partially or temporarily solved problems do not vanish with our lifetime. They change forms and appearances, the ghosts of our buried and bygone self raises its head again in the present to pull us back. Old ideas return, slain past survives, forgotten memories resurface and prolong the drama and adventure of life upon earth. This is as much true of an individual as for a nation. And there is no way but to go through it, with patience and perseverance, with courage and faith and hope in our hearts, and if possible to strive and ask for the vision that can pierce through the clouds and see behind appearances.

Indeed the entire line of our national yoga has not only been laid down but is also being conducted from behind the scenes by Sri Aurobindo. He has not only foreseen the destiny of India but has also kept it safe in the subtle atmosphere of the earth. Sri Aurobindo has already laid the foundations of the national yoga. Firstly, he awakened the national soul from its torpor and initiated it into the yoga of the new world. He brought back to its surface consciousness the memory of its past spiritual efforts, recovered the lost Vedas in its full and original glory and splendour, vedanudharte, connected them through the unbroken thread of spiritual continuity down the Ages of the Upanishads, the Gita, Tantrās and the purāna, the lineage of the great rishis and avataras (of which he is surely one) and finally linked it to our very own modern times!! By doing this he was not only delivering the fully formed psychic being of India but also connecting it once again with the life and body of the nation. Secondly, he laid the broad lines for reshaping the inner being of India along the lines of its swadharma so that India can find its true place and become a conscious instrument of the divine design in this universe. The inner being of a nation is represented by its culture, its highest and noblest thoughts and feelings and aspirations; its output in terms of art and literature and media. And finally, it has an outer body and this too has been formed and kept safe in the Mother’s divine hands as the spiritual map of united India. And having inwardly attempted and achieved all for us, Sri Aurobindo is preparing us to deserve these boons. And as is characteristic of Sri Aurobindo he is leading us from within outwards, handling and manipulating the play of forces in such a way that we are compelled to make a choice. There is a constant subtle pressure upon India that, it cannot rest. A power is acting upon it from the heights.

Lastly, we come to the crucial issue, — can we and how are we to participate in this national yoga, to facilitate the speedy and smooth realisation of Sri Aurobindo’s dream of a new India? For one thing is sure that doubt and distrust do not help in the least. Nor does cynicism, complaining and grumbling help. As in individual yoga, these things add to the pool of negative energies just as faith, trust, and hope help to increase the pool of positive forces. We must also be clear that since India is meant to express the “psychic law” therefore other methods are not going to work much except as a temporary stopgap measure. The old methods are fast losing their validity the world over. Punishment and fear, for example, are becoming counter-productive in holding down anything for long. The human consciousness has certainly moved beyond that. Above all, one must not hope and expect too much from the government machinery. It is very doubtful that the nation will change with a change in political parties. What is much more likely is that politics and the parties will be forced to change because of an uprising in the national consciousness. And things are fast reaching a boiling point when a little ferment at an opportune moment may precipitate a chain reaction of the kind we never expected. Indeed the sense of unexpected is clearly shaping the world much more than the planned execution of calculated ideas. This is another sign that the divine is behind this play and is forcing the change upon us by the power of crashing circumstances. Politics will perhaps be the last thing to change, more out of compulsion than choice. The major effort of national regeneration should therefore be directed towards this spiritual awakening and for this the most powerful tool is not politics but education. That is where the stress of the nation should be. That is also the instrument through which the Time-Spirit is working most swiftly. Instead of changing old-fashioned politicians and old-fashioned parents, it is changing the children! And they are changing very fast. Can we imagine a child born today or after another ten years carry such a religious or regional identity as a generation before us did? Even his national identity will be more fluid and plastic, something not sentimental and political but temperamental. Already the first signs are appearing and the new generation is unlikely to carry the vendetta, the unfinished agenda of hatred and revenge beyond the history books, except perhaps in a few pockets of strong resistance. What we need is not the repair of the old lamps but to replace new lamps for the old ones.

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