Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Important Comments

Things seem to be taking a nasty turn.
But what I find perhaps even more incredible than the leaders' incompetence - Nehru, Menon, and so forth - is that for twenty years there hasn't been a single Indian to see things clearly and speak out - there's been no one in India, no one. For twenty years there have been two idols, Nehru and Gandhi, and then some 400 million stupefied people,[[700 million in 1981. ]] with no one to see things clearly. How is it possible?... No one!
But Nehru had a very good foreign press. They considered him almost a god in Europe and America. And Gandhi! ... Oh, they were.... The whole world is like that, mon petit - they don't understand. They don't understand. Nobody understands.
We will see.


If things take a bad turn, soon no one will be able to move; once again we'll be (gesture) shut up in an egg.
When Sri Aurobindo was here, you went to sit in the room he was in, and felt perfectly sheltered from everything - and it was true.
The only danger at the time was Japan, and Japan had officially declared it wouldn't bomb Pondicherry because of Sri Aurobindo. But at least there were still men in their planes, and they could choose not to bomb. But you don't tell a jet plane "Don't crash here"! It crashes wherever it can


Sir Stafford Cripps Proposal Part2

the Grace will withdraw and then the nation will suffer terribly, calamity will overtake it.
" 'Only some months ago, the same Grace presented itself at the door of France, immediately after the fall of Dunkirk, in the form of Churchill's offer to her to have joint nationality with England and fight the enemy. Sri Aurobindo said that it was the right idea, and it would also have helped His work immensely. But France could not raise herself above the ordinary mind, and rejected it. So the Grace withdrew and the Soul of France has gone down. One doesn't know when the real France will be up again.
" 'But India with her background of intense spiritual development through the ages, must realise the Grace that is behind this offer. It is not simply a human offering. Of course its form has been given by the human mind, and it has elements of imperfection in it. But that does not matter at all. Have faith in the Grace and leave everything to the Divine who will surely work it out.
" 'My ardent request to India is that she should not reject it. She must not make the same mistake that France has done recently and that has plunged her into the abyss.'
"As soon as She had finished speaking She hurried back to Her dressing room, without a word or a look at anybody. Later, on the same day, the first of April, 1942, when She returned from the Prosperity after the distribution, She disclosed that, Sri Aurobindo had already sent a telegram to Sir Stafford, and the latter
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had reciprocated very heartily, and both the telegrams were being put on the notice board by Nolini. We then read the messages and were very much encouraged.
"But the next day or the day after it, the Congress announced that it had rejected the offer. The Mother was quite unperturbed; She only said, 'Now calamity will befall India.'
"The events that followed in India right up to now need no mention.. We have been paying all along for our mistake."
The next issue, if not so great in magnitude, was the Japanese aggression. Japan, like a minor Hitler, had established its supremacy in the East. But Sri Aurobindo had never taken Japan's aggression very seriously. On the contrary, he once remarked that should Hitler become supreme in the West and turn his forces towards the East, Japan's power might be useful in confronting Hitler and checking his advance. This remark supporting as it were Japan's blaze of imperial conquest baffled me at the time. Did he want Japan's rise to serve as a counterblast to Hitler's problematic thrust towards the East? Or could it be read as a move to force America into the War? At any rate it was quite evident from our talks that Japan's dramatic conquests did not disturb him, as did Hitler's. But it was only when Japan's design on India, aided by some of our misguided patriots, was palpably clear, that Sri Aurobindo, as he himself avowed, used his spiritual Force against Japan and "had the satisfaction of seeing the tide of Japanese victory which had till then swept everything before it, change immediately into a tide of rapid, crushing
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and finally immense and overwhelming defeat".
We heard of the Japanese bombing of Calcutta and Vishakhapatnam, we also heard that Japanese warships had come to the Indian Ocean at Trincomali and the next information that reached us almost immediately was that they had exploded and sunk before they had time to invade India! In the North-East the I.N.A.¹ with the Japanese army at its back was triumphantly marching into Assam. The Indian army seemed to be in a panicky retreat, and the British Government, counting its imperial glory to be almost at an end, was preparing to leave India. The then Governor of Bengal seemed to have said at a cabinet meeting, "This time the game is up." When the words were reported to Sri Aurobindo he remarked, "Now the wheel will turn." For the Allies the situation at that moment was desperate everywhere, in Africa, in India, in Europe.
At this jubilant moment of the enemy, India's destiny intervened. A heavy downpour from heaven inundated the dense Assam jungles for days together, so that, bogged in the flood and mud, the invading army with its liberation force had to liberate itself from the wrath of Nature and beat an ignominious retreat. Yet rain during that season had never been heard of before.
In this context let us quote what the Mother said to a sadhak in 1927, when he asked how India was likely to get freedom. The Mother's prophetic reply was, "When a Japanese warship will come to the Indian Ocean." In fact, the Mother had visioned India's Independence In 1920. It was when she and Sri Aurobindo were in

¹ The Indian National Army of Subhash Bose.
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meditation, and she reached a state of consciousness from which she told Sri Aurobindo: "India is free."
Sri Aurobindo: How?
The Mother: Without any fight, without a battle, without a revolution. The English themselves will leave, for the condition of the world will be such that they won't be able to do anything else except go away.
It took twenty-seven years for that vision of the truth-plane to actualise itself on the material plane. In those early days the Mother used to pay special visits to the rooms of the sadhaks. One day A asked her, "How is India likely to get freedom?" She replied, "Listen! The British did not conquer India. You yourselves handed over the country to the British. In the same manner the British will themselves hand over the country to you. And they will do it in a hurry as if a ship were waiting to take them away."' How true was the prophecy!
Today the achievement of India's freedom is attributed to various factors: the August movement, Non-cooperation, the Terrorist movement, the I. N. A. and others; the factor that played the decisive part is either not admitted or ignored altogether. From Sri Aurobindo's pronouncements we can assert that his Force was principally responsible for the success of the Allies and the defeat of the Japanese, thereby helping India to gain her freedom. In fact, India's freedom had been his constant dream from his very boyhood. Even during his intense sadhana in Pondicherry, it was always in his mind and he indefatigably worked for it in the yogic way till he became convinced that freedom was

¹. Narayan Prasad: Life in Sri Aurobindo Ashram (Pondicherry, 1965).
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inevitable. As far back as 1935, when I asked him if he was working for India's freedom, he replied, "That is all settled, it is a question of working out only.... It is what she will do with her independence that is not arranged for - and so it is that about which I have to bother."
The other causes then could be considered no more than contributory, even if indispensable factors. Out of all these, I may make some comment on the claims of the I. N. A. Whatever significance there may be in its claims, the role it played was fraught with most dangerous consequences. I wonder how our countrymen had no apprehension of them. It was a fatal game the I.N.A. played, thinking that the Japanese, after the conquest of India, would peacefully leave the country letting the I.N.A. enjoy the fruit of its victory, or that India would be able to fight and drive them out. Sri Aurobindo pointing out what would have been our condition, had Japan entered India, said, "Japan's imperialism being young and based on industrial and military power and moving westward, was a greater menace to India than the British imperialism which was old, which the country had learnt to deal with and which was on the way to elimination."

Sir Stafford Cripps Proposal

Along with the European war, India's political problem naturally played a prominent part in our discussion, Mahatma Gandhi's attitude, the Congress policy, the Hindu-Muslim problem, Jinnah's intransigence and the Viceroy's role as the peace-maker, all this complicated politics and our Himalayan blunders leading to the rejection of the famous Cripps' Proposals, were within our constant purview.... The upshot of the whole discussion till the arrival of the Cripps' Mission can be put in a few words; the Congress made a big mistake by resigning from the Ministry. The Government was ready to offer us Dominion Status which we should have accepted, for it was virtually a step towards independence. We should have joined the war-effort. That would have created an opportunity to enter into all military departments and operations in air, on sea and land; hold positions, become efficient and thus enforce our natural right for freedom.
When Gandhi complained that the Viceroy did not say anything in reply to all his questions, Sri Aurobindo said to us in one of our talks on October 7th, 1940:
"What will he say? It is very plain why he did not. First
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of all, the Government doesn't want to concede the demand for independence. What it is willing to give is .Dominion Status after the War, expecting that India will settle down into a common relationship with the Empire. But just now a national government will virtually mean Dominion Status with the Viceroy only as a constitutional head. Nobody knows what the Congress will do after it gets power. It may be occupied only with India's defence and give such help as it can spare to England. And if things go wrong with the British, it may even make a separate peace leaving them in the lurch. There are Left Wingers, Socialists, Communists whom the Congress won't be able to bring to its side, neither will it dare to offend them and if their influence is sufficiently strong, the Congress may stand against the British. Thus it is quite natural for them not to part with power just now as it is also natural for us to make our claims. But since we haven't got enough strength to back us, we have to see if we have any common meeting ground with the Government. If there is, a compromise is the only practical step. There was such an opportunity, but the Congress spoiled it. Now you have to accept what you get or I don't know what is going to happen. Of course, if we had the strength and power to make a revolution and get what we want, it would be a different matter. Amery and others did offer Dominion Status at one time. Now they have changed their position because they have come to know the spirit of our people. Our politicians have some fixed ideas and they always go by them. Politicians and statesmen have to take account of situations and act as demanded by them
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They must have insight."
"But it is because of the British divide-and-rule policy that we can't unite," we parried.
"Nonsense!"¹ Sri Aurobindo rebuffed. "Was there unity in India before the British rule?... Does Jinnah want unity? His very character shows what he wants – independence for the Muslims and rule over India if possible. The old spirit."
In the impasse created partially by the bankruptcy of the Congress policy, Providence came to the rescue in the form of the Cripps' Proposals which, if accepted, would have changed the fate of India. But the forces of distrust, discontent and wanting everything at once, led to a failure to see the substance of Swaraj, as Sri Aurobindo has said, in the offer. There was a pother about small points and overlooking of the central important objective to be attained. Sri Aurobindo found in the proposal a fine opportunity for the solution of India's intricate problems and her ultimate liberation. We may note that the proposals envisaged a single, free, undivided India setting up a united front against the enemy. He promptly sent a message to Sir Stafford Cripps welcoming the Proposals and recommended their acceptance to the Indian leaders. The message was as follows: "I have heard your broadcast. As one who has been a nationalist leader and worker for India's Independence, though now my activity is no longer in the political but in the spiritual field, I wish to express my

¹. Sri Aurobindo meant not that the British never followed the policy of divide-and-rule, but that divisions were already there for them to take advantage of and increase.
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appreciation of all you have done to bring about this offer. I welcome it as an opportunity given to India to determine for herself, and organise in all liberty of choice, her freedom and unity and take an effective place among the world's free nations. I hope that it will be accepted, and right use made of it, putting aside all discords and divisions. I hope too that friendly relations between Britain and India replacing the past struggles, will be a step towards a greater world union in which, as a free nation, her spiritual force will contribute to build for mankind a better and happier life. In this light, I offer public adhesion, in case it can be of any help to your work."
Sir Stafford Cripps replied, "I am most touched and gratified by your kind message allowing me to inform India that you, who occupy a unique position in the imagination of Indian youth, were convinced that the declaration of His Majesty's Government substantially confers that freedom for which Indian Nationalism has so long struggled."
Sri Aurobindo also sent messages through Mr. Shiva Rao to Mahatma Gandhi and Pandit Nehru that Cripps' offer should be accepted unconditionally. Lastly, he sent his envoy to Delhi to appeal to the Congress leaders for its acceptance, for sanity and wisdom to prevail. At this crucial moment Sri Aurobindo could not remain a passive witness to the folly that was about to be committed. His seer-vision saw that the Proposals had come on a wave of divine inspiration. The scene is still fresh in our memory. It was the evening hour. Sri Aurobindo was sitting on the edge of his bed just before his daily
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walking exercise. All of us were present; Duraiswamy, the distinguished Madras lawyer and disciple, was selected as the envoy, perhaps because he was a friend of Rajagopalachari, one of the prominent Congress leaders. He was to start for Delhi that very night. He came for Sri Aurobindo's blessings, lay prostrate before him, got up and stood looking at the Master with folded hands and then departed.
He was carrying with him an urgent appeal by Sri Aurobindo to the Congress Working Committee. Sisir Kumar Mitra reports in The Liberator, "the viewpoints which Sri Aurobindo instructed his envoy to place before the Congress leaders... (1) Japan's imperialism being young and based on industrial and military power and moving westward, was a greater menace to India than the British imperialism which was old, which the country had learnt to deal with and which was on the way to elimination. (2) It would be better to get into the saddle and not be particular about the legal basis of the power. Once the power came into our hands and we occupied seats of power, we could establish our positions and assert ourselves. (3) The proposed Cabinet would provide opportunities for the Congress and the Muslims to understand each other and pull together for the country's good, especially at that time of the crisis. (4) The Hindu Mahasabha also being represented, the Hindus, as such would have a chance of proving their capacity to govern India not only for the benefit of the Hindus but for the whole country. (5) The main problem was to organise the strength of India in order. to repel the threatened aggression."
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We may remind ourselves of Talthybius's mission to Troy in Sri Aurobindo's epic poem Ilion: Achilles made an offer by which Troy would be saved and the honour; of the Greeks would be preserved, a harmonising offer, but it was rejected. Similarly, Duraiswamy went with India's soul in his "frail" hands and brought it back, downhearted, rewarded with ungracious remarks for the gratuitous advice. Sri Aurobindo even sent a telegram to Rajagopalachari and Dr. Munje urging them to accept the Proposals. Dr. Indra Sen writes, "We met the members individually and the sense of the reactions were more or less to this effect: Sri Aurobindo has created difficulties for us by his message to Cripps. He doesn't know the actual situation, we are in it, we know' better... and so on." Cripps flew back a disappointed man but with the consolation and gratified recognition that at least one great man had welcomed the idea. When the rejection was announced, Sri Aurobindo said in a quiet tone, "I knew it would fail." We at once pounced on it and asked him, "Why did you then send Duraiswamy at all?" "For a bit of niskama karma"¹ was his calm reply, without any bitterness or resentment. The full spirit of the kind of "disinterested work" he meant comes out in an early letter of his - (December 1933), which refers to his spiritual work: "I am sure of the results of my work. But even if I still saw the chance that it might come to nothing (which is impossible), I would go on unperturbed, because I would still have

¹. Disinterested work the essence of which is that the work is inwardly dedicated to the Divine with no attachment to the result.
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done to the best of my power the work that I had to do, and what is so done always counts in the economy of the universe."
After the War, the Labour Government of U.K. sent a Cabinet Mission to India in 1946 for fresh talks. Asked to give his views on the mission by Amrita Bazar Patrika, a leading daily in the country, Sri Aurobindo said:
"Sri Aurobindo thinks it unnecessary to volunteer a personal pronouncement... His position is known. He has always stood for India's complete independence which he was the first to advocate publicly and without compromise as the only ideal worthy of a self-respecting nation. In 1910 he authorised the publication of his prediction that after a long period of wars, world-wide upheavals and revolutions beginning after four years, India would achieve her freedom. Lately he has said that freedom was coming soon and nothing could prevent it. He has always foreseen that eventually Britain would approach India for an amicable agreement, conceding her freedom. What he had foreseen is now coming to pass and the British Cabinet Mission is the sign. It remains for the nation's leaders to make a right and full use of the opportunity. In any case, whatever the immediate outcome, the Power that has been working out this event will not be denied, the final result, India's liberation, is sure."
We know the aftermath of the rejection of the Cripps' Proposals as well as the failure of the Cabinet Mission: confusion, calamity, partition, blood-bath, etc., and the belated recognition of the colossal blunder. Then when the partition had been accepted as a settled fact, Sri
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Aurobindo's "bardic" voice was heard once again, "But by whatever means, in whatever way, the division must go; unity must and will be achieved, for it is necessary for the greatness of India's future." Past events have justified Sri Aurobindo's solemn warning and recent events point to the way to liquidation of that division.¹
Let me again draw upon the fellow-sadhak from whom I have already quoted. He brings out the Mother's stand on the Cripps-question:
"Then came the famous Cripps' Proposals. In the evening Sir Stafford Cripps broadcast his Proposals to the Indian people, from Delhi; they were discussed everywhere. In P's room the radio was installed and a connection made to Sri Aurobindo's room so that he might listen to the war-news and reports from all quarters of the globe, except from the Axis zones.
"The next day at about 2 p.m., after the All India Radio news at 1.30, there was a hot discussion among three sadhaks, including P, in his room. P took the standpoint of the purely spiritual man, who judges by looking at what is behind appearances. It seemed that he had already spoken with the Mother and thus was arguing forcefully for the acceptance of the Proposals. The second person was an experienced politician of the Gandhian Congress days and took the negative position. He argued the pros and cons of the Proposals and was of the opinion that the Indian leaders would reject them. The third a novice, with no political experience, was more for its acceptance. The discussion became

¹. We are happy to see that Sri Aurobindo's prediction has been half- fulfilled, for Bangla Desh (East Pakistan) is now entirely independent.
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hotter and hotter, so much so that the Mother, while going from Her bath-room to Her dressing room, was attracted by the unusual volume of sound. She did not enter Her dressing room, but turned Her steps towards P's room. Before entering there, She heard part of the argument. Then She stepped in and asked, 'What is it all about?' P said that one person argued that Cripps' offer would not be accepted by the Indian leaders. The Mother felt amused and inquired, 'Why?' By then She had sat on the chair that was in front of Her. It was a very unusual and interesting scene; the Mother, still in Her beautiful Japanese kimono just out of the bath, didn't seem to care to change Her dress, and was more interested in the arguments against the acceptance. Then She began to talk with a very calm and distinct voice. One could see that She who had entered a few minutes ago had been transported somewhere else and the voice was coming from that plane....
"She said something to this effect: 'One should leave the matter of the Cripps' offer entirely in the hands of the Divine, with full confidence that the Divine will work everything out. Certainly there were flaws in the offer. Nothing on earth created by man is flawless, because the human mind has a limited capacity. Yet behind this offer there is the Divine Grace directly present. The Grace is now at the door of India, ready to give its help. In the history of a nation such opportunities do not come often. The Grace presents itself at rare moments, after centuries of preparation of that nation. If it is accepted, the nation will survive and get a new birth in the Divine's consciousness. But if it is rejected
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Monday, March 30, 2009

Allama Mashraqi's Vision

"Long Live The Ideals of the Khaksars.........Peace, Amity,Brotherhood, Service - Irrespective of Caste or Creed, One God, One Humanity, One Practical Religion, ---- Yes, One Religion, Which means Goodness In Action"

The Radiance ( Aligarh) February 06, 1943

In 1947, the Indian subcontinent was divided into three parts: India, East Pakistan, and
West Pakistan. This division resulted in one of the bloodiest massacres the two nations have ever seen..READ MORE

Mashriqi's reasons for rejecting Cripp's proposal.....

April 03, 1942
The Khaksar Tehrik officially rejects the Sir Stafford Cripps proposals.Mashriqi sends telegrams to Quaid-e-Azam, Abul Kalam Azad, Mahatma Gandhi,Jawaharlal Nehru, Veer D. Savarkar, and Dr. Pattabhi Sitaramiyya. The telegrams state:揔haksar organization rejects Cripps?proposals in entirety, considers themmeaningless, unreal, while enemy actually India抯 doors unless every party isunhesitatingly and fully armed in order to defend India utmost, also unless an IndianDefence Minister, capable of galvanizing India utmost, is immediately appointed.?BR>Source: Pakistan's Freedom & Allama Mashriqi: Statements, Letters, Chronology of Khaksar Tehrik (Movement), Period Mashriqi's birth to 1947--ISBN 0976033305. p.235
Also see:The Radiance (Aligarh), February 06, 1943, p.11
____________________________________________April 11, 1942
Allama Mashriqi sends the following telegram to the Presidents of the All-India Muslim League, Indian National Congress, and the Hindu Mahasabha:
揧our rejection of the [Sir Stafford] Cripps proposals is the happiest augury to a united and peaceful India. Accept heartiest congratulations. I fully undertake the responsibility of securing by negotiation complete independence for India from the British Government within six months, provided the Congress, the League and the Mahasabha unitedly demand independence now, and of also non-communally organising for the safety of civil population everywhere. I offer immediately half a million Khaksars for service,irrespective of caste or creed. I have wired similarly to other presidents. Deliberate profoundly. Do not miss this critical opportunity.?BR>Source: Pakistan's Freedom & Allama Mashriqi: Statements, Letters, Chronology of Khaksar Tehrik (Movement), Period Mashriqi's birth to 1947--ISBN 0976033305. p.236.

The Khaksar Movement

NIRODBARAN: I went to Dilip today. He asked me if it was true that you had said that the spirit of your Tapasya is behind the Hindu Sabha movement.
SRI AUROBINDO: What did you say?
NIRODBARAN: I said that I didn't know. It came out in the paper under the name of the secretary, so it may be true.
SRI AUROBINDO: Who said that?
NIRODBARAN: Since it was the secretary, it may be Nolini.
PURANI: No, Anilbaran, I think. Perhaps it was written privately to somebody and they have published it.
SRI AUROBINDO (after some time): Who knows, the spirit of my Tapasya may be behind the Khaksar movement also. The Divine Force is everywhere
SRI AUROBINDO: The Sunday Express says that the Khaksar movement was being fed from Germany.
PURANI: It is quite true. That came out in the secret police investigation. That is why the Indian Government came down on them and Sikandar Hyat could not protect them any more.
NIRODBARAN: Hitler has duped them with Muslim Raj?
SRI AUROBINDO: No, maybe independence of India. This Mushriki has been to England?
NIRODBARAN (addressing Purani): Jinnah has come out. So he is not ill.
SRI AUROBINDO: He practically says to the Government, "You side with us and we will see."
PURANI: What can the Congress do?
NIRODBARAN: If the Government concedes to the Congress, can the Muslim League do anything effective against it?
SATYENDRA: What can they do?
NIRODBARAN: Non-violent non-cooperation?
PURANI: Non-violent? By the Muslims?
SRI AUROBINDO: They can start some Khaksar agitation.
PURANI : Have you read the report of the officers in the Khaksar shooting enquiry? They have made some amazing disclosures — that Allama Mushriqui intended to enlist twenty-five lakhs of volunteers and be a dictator.
SRI AUROBINDO: Twenty-five lakhs! That means all the Muslim adults.
PURANI: After this, Sikander will hesitate to lift the ban - especially after Sir Chimanlal's accusation that he was also a party to the Pakistan scheme.
SRI AUROBINDO: But, in the scheme, if the Sikhs and Hindus were separated, they would have poor success. They may try to bring in Afghanistan. But Afghanistan is not wealthy and its people have a certain contempt for Indian Muslims. And in Bengal the West Bengalis will want a separate province.
The Khaksar Tehrik (Urdu: تحریکِ خاکسار ) was a social movement based in Lahore, British India, established by Allama Mashriqi in 1930 to free India from foreign rule, to uplift the masses, and to revive the Muslims, who had previously ruled parts of India at different times during a period spanning nearly a thousand years. Although Mashriqi firmly believed that the right to rule India belonged to the Muslims, at the same time, he wanted to create an environment of fairness, justice, and equal rights for non-Muslims as well. For this reason, non-Muslims were allowed to join the Tahrik keeping it free from prejudice against any person, regardless of his/her caste, color, creed. The word "Khaksar" is derived from the Persian language, Khak means dust, and Sar means life, roughly translated as "a humble person."
The Khaksar Tehrik worked under a charter that everyone was required to follow, with no exceptions. The charter was created to ensure all were treated fairly; even Allama Mashriqi, founder and leader of the Tehrik, was held accountable for his actions. The Tehrik was also kept free of any membership fee. All Khaksars were required to bear their own expenses and donate their time. The purpose was to develop the spirit of self-reliance and encourag the Khaksars to spend their own money and time for the national cause...READ+

Mashriqi was a noted intellectual who became a college Principal at the age of 25, and then became an Under Secretary, at the age of 29, in the Education Department of the Government of India. He wrote an exegesis of the Qur'an which was nominated for the 1925 Nobel Prize. He was offered an Ambassadorship to Afghanistan at age 32 and Knighthood at the age of 33 years, but he declined all honours.
He subsequently resigned government service and in 1930 founded the Khaksar Movement, aiming to advance the condition of the masses irrespective of any faith, sect, or religion.[1] As its leader, he was imprisoned several times. Through his philosophical writings, he asserted that the Science of Religions was essentially the science of collective evolution of mankind...Mashriqi had a passion for mathematics from his childhood.[1] He completed his Master's degree in Mathematics from the University of the Punjab at the age of 19 and broke all previous records. In October 1907 he went to Britain and matriculated at Christ's College, Cambridge, to read for the mathematics tripos. He was awarded a college foundation scholarship in May 1908.[4] In June 1909 he was awarded first class honours in Mathematics Part I, being placed joint 27th out of 31 on the list of wranglers.[5] For the next two years, he read for the oriental languages tripos in parallel to the natural sciences tripos, gaining first class honours in the former and third class in the latter.[6][7]
After three years' residence at Cambridge he had qualified for his Bachelor of Arts degree, which he took in 1910. In 1912 he completed a fourth tripos in mechanical sciences, and was placed in the second class.[8] He left Cambridge and returned to India in December 1912.[9]. During his stay in Cambridge his religious and scientific conviction was inspired by the works and concepts of the professor Sir James Jeans..READ MORE

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Sri Aurobindo On Gandhi's Ahimsa/Satyagraha

28th November, 1940
Letters from Kabul and from Ella Maillard; change in attitude to Gabriel; effective representation of Ella. Gandhi's will – or political will was read (brought by Abhaya Deva) distributed to Gandhi Seva Sangh – spoken orally and taken down; after hearing the whole letter Sri Aurobindo said :
Something in him takes delight in suffering for its own sake. Even the prospect of suffering seems to please him though he puts in a lot of ethics with his justification, the fact is that something in him enjoys suffering.
2. Secondly, if he knows that to the British Government 50 Gandhis would not matter – what does he propose then to achieve politically by his fast? He even knows that the British people are not even going to consider the possibility of Ahimsa!
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It is the Christian idea that has taken hold of him. Besides he seems to think that after him his theory and creed of non-violence would continue. I don't think so. A few people would be there but anything like a wide scale influence like that of his personality does not seem possible.
+ + +
I don't object to the world-order but I object to Hitler's world order. "Psychology" would remain unpublished so long as the war lasts because I must known whether Hitler goes up or goes down.
All European publications have been stopped on account of the war.
My contribution to the war fund was not my taking part in politics. It was in view of much wider issues which I have spoken of in my letter, – the issues of human culture and individual and national liberty; and as the English are the only race that stand up for it, I support them.
"Justice" – Englishmen won't be acting according to justice, why should they? Which nation acts on the principles of justice? Why should we expect them to fulfill a standard which we ourselves can't satisfy.
Indian problem has been very badly bungled by Jinnah, and Congress and Mahasabha. They have not been able to play their cards well. That is why they are losing the game.
What is justice after all? To the Socialist denial of all property, liquidation of capitalism is justice. To the capitalist something else is justice.
Congress is asking for freedom of expression but it does not give its own members freedom to express their ideas, if they are against their official policy.
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Two ways of securing freedoms by force, by revolution – that cannot succeed so long as we have Jinnahs etc. The only other course is compromise. There you have to give and take, – know your opponent. Generally, the English do not want to go to the extreme or to be continuously repressing. After a time they like to come to a compromise. Generally they arrange the bargain in such a way that they gain in the compromise. They want to be respected. They don't like to be called bad.
Fast and Satyagraha changing the heart of the opponent is absurd. What it can do is to exert pressure and secure some concession.
But it can't succeed if it challenges the very existence of the other force. For instance, Gandhi succeeded in settling the labour question because the capitalists did not want to earn public obloquy. So they gave concession to his demands. But suppose instead of some demands of amelioration he had asked them to hand over the mills to the workers then he would not have succeeded.
All the talk of change of heart is absurd. If it changes anything, it may change only the mind – not the heart. The man may not like to face the consequences and so would give in without changing the heart.
The English have also some constitutional mind. So once they give, they don't go back upon their word. They don't want anyone else to walk into India when they walk out of it. They are afraid of that happening if they leave India now. It would certainly mean civil war and any other power can walk into India. They have proclaimed that they would grant Dominion Status which amounts to Independence except one or two matters like defense and foreign affairs.
Page – 297 ....

More On Gandhis Non Violence

Violence is necessary as long as men are ruled by their ego and its desires. But violence must be used only as a means of defense when you are attacked. The ideal towards which humanity is moving and which we want to realize is a state of luminous understanding in which each person's needs as well as the harmony of the whole are taken into account.
The future will have no need of violence because it will be governed by the Divine Consciousness, in which all things are harmonized and complement each other.
For the moment, we are still in a stage where weapons are necessary. But it should be understood that this is a transitory stage, not a permanent one, and we must strive for the other one.
Peace ... peace and harmony will be a natural outcome of the change of consciousness'
....You see, in India there reigns the Gandhian concept of nonviolence which has replaced physical violence with moral violence, but it's far worse!
But if you dare speak against Gandhi, everyone will immediately ... oh!
You don't need to mention his name, you can explain to the children that replacing physical violence with moral violence is no better. Lying down in front of a train to stop it running is a moral violence that can ultimately cause more disorder than physical violence.
There would be a lot to say.... It depends on each case. I myself very much encouraged the practice of fencing because it gives you skill, control over your movements and discipline in violence - I very much encouraged fencing at one time. I learned how to shoot; I used to shoot with a rifle, because it gives you steadiness and skill and a very good eye; and it forces you to remain calm in the midst of danger. All these things are.... I don't see why one should be hopelessly nonviolent, it only makes a spineless character.[367]
Turn it into an art! An art for cultivating calm, skill and self control. There's no need to cry out indignantly as Gandhi would. It's useless, useless, absolutely useless - I am not at all in favor of it! One should master the means of self-defense, and one should cultivate them in order to do so.
Above all, make them understand that moral violence is just as bad as physical violence. It can even be worse, that is, at least physical violence forces you to become strong and control yourself, whereas moral violence is.... You may be like this [apparently quiet] and harbor the worst moral violence in yourself.

The Mother On Gods And The Overmind Plane

"The gods of the Overhead planes can do much to bridge that distance and to bring out that closeness, even if they cannot altogether overtake the Reality that exceeds and transcends them."


September 26, 1962
What do you want to know?
I would especially like to understand the difference between the overmind and the Supermind - to understand it concretely, not abstractly.
The overmind isn't part of the intellect. It's the domain of the gods.
It is the domain of the gods, and that's what has been ruling the earth. All the gods men have known, worshipped and had contact with are there.
Yes, a domain of gods, with godlike lives and godlike ways - it's not the Supermind
Yes, precisely - but what exactly makes the difference?
I don't believe the gods have access to the Supermind.
Yes, the gods stop at the overmind.
I am unfamiliar with the purely Hindu traditions, but the gods are the beings the Vedas and people of Vedic times were in touch with - at least I think so. I learned what I know about the gods before coming here, through the other tradition, the Chaldean. But Th閛n used to say that this tradition and the Vedic (which he knew well) were outgrowths of a more ancient tradition common to both. The story goes, according to him, that the first Emanations, who were perfectly independent, separated themselves from the Supreme in their action, creating all the disorder - that's what caused the creation's disorder. Afterwards the gods were emanated, to repair the evil that had been wrought and to organize the world according to the supreme Will. Of course, this is a childlike way of putting it, but it's comprehensible. So all these gods work in harmony and order. That's what the ancient tradition says.
As far as I've understood, the Indian tradition has embraced everything that came from the first Emanations, since all the gods of destruction, of unconsciousness and of suffering are included in its pantheon.
In the end, I think it's up to each one to name what he wants the way he wants. That's how I have always felt. Even in Hindu tradition it is written: "Man is chattel for the gods; beware of the gods."

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The Mother's remark On Gandhi's Non Violence(Ahimsa)

(After listening to a passage in Satprem's manuscript on nonviolence and Gandhi, Mother makes another brief remark:)
They're really smacking their lips over their ahimsa[[Ahimsa: nonviolence. ]] - it's disgusting!....Today we are finding that the old gods know how to transmigrate. Gandhi himself, seeing all those years of nonviolence culminate in the terrible violence that marked India's partition in 1947, ruefully observed shortly before his death: "The attitude of violence which we have secretly harboured now recoils on us, and makes us fly at each other's throats when the question of distribution of power arises.... Now that the burden of subjection is lifted, all the forces of evil have come to the surface." For neither nonviolence nor violence touch upon the root of Evil.... (THE AGENDA ,SEPTEMBAR22,1962)

Friday, March 27, 2009

Gandhi's Dharma

Gandhi and Indian Mysticism

It is unfortunate that an impartial estimate of the greatness of Mahatma Gandhi, done more than forty years ago by Amal Kiran in his book The Indian Spirit and the World's Future, has not received its due recognition. While an average Indian immediately links up Swaraj with Gandhi, the author of this exegesis wonders if the elements of Indian mysticism in the Mahatma's socio-political approach really draw nourishment from the rich and invigorating traditions of the land. - Editors

THE idealisation of non-violence at all costs serves also to throw into relief the precise meaning of Gandhi's saying: "Politics are to me subservient to religion." If religion primarily signified to him non-violence, then it is doubtful whether he can stand wholly as a representative of what India has historically understood by religion. In the golden age of spirituality, the Vedic times, the arts of war were not taboo. Even in the Ashrams of the Rishis archery was taught - surely not just to hunt animals (though that too would be contrary to non-violence). It was taught essentially in order to fit men for violence in a right cause. The emphasis was always on being right, not on being non- violent. The holiest figures in Indian tradition, Rama and Krishna, were mighty warriors and urged men to ..battle against the enemies of dharma. To explain away their fights as being allegories of inner struggle between man's higher self and his lower is to forget that in part of mankind the lower self is not only dominant but also aggressive against those in whom the higher self is more active and that the inner struggle must necessarily get projected into an epic of physical combat. Even Buddha who among India's spiritual personalities put the greatest premium on non-violence did not enjoin it on all and sundry: he restricted it to the class of monks and, while conjuring humanity to return love for hatred, never discouraged violence in
defence of a cause that was just. The absolute adherence to ahimsa was derived by Gandhi from Tolstoy: It does not reflect the flexible and many-sided spiritual wisdom of original Hinduism.
There is also another fact which leads us to question whether Gandhi, for all his veneration of the Gita, embodied vitally the soul of the Hindu religion. It was not only Swaraj that he deemed undesirable without unsleeping agitation and activity to demo- lish the barrier between the Untouchables and the rest of our population: Even Hinduism itself, the whole grand structure of spiritual aspiration towards the invisible Divine, was a mockery to Gandhi so long as that barrier was not torn down. One of his often-quoted utterances is that he would far rather that Hin- duism died than that Untouchability lived! Here is an hysterical rushing to extremes by a conscience hypersensitive to social inequalities. Here is deplorable forgetfulness of the truth that, though social reformism is a fine passion, it cannot be the centre and core of man's upward endeavour. The main purpose of true religion is a change of the merely human consciousness into a divine consciousness by a progressive practice of me presence of God. Only when that presence is inwardly realised can social pestilences like Untouchability be radically removed. Till then, sincere efforts must certainly be made to abolish them by means of brotherly social behaviour, but to believe that a sore like Untouchability renders all Hinduism corrupt and futile and that, without the help of the fundamental transformation of conscious- ness that is Yoga, me root and not only one or another outward form of social iniquity can be plucked out is to confuse morality with religion and to prove clearly that one lacks the burning essence of not only the Hindu religion ..SOURCE

Gandhi And His Capitalist Financiers


"My thirst for money is simply unquenchable. I need at least Rs. 2,00,000--for khadi, untouchability and education. The dairy work makes another Rs. 50,000. Then there is the Ashram expenditure. No work remains unfinished for want of funds, but God gives after severe trials. This also satisfies me. You can give as you like for whatever work you have faith in"


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Thursday, March 26, 2009

INA'S Impact On India's Independence Part2

The Myth of "Freedom through Non-violence under Gandhi's Leadership"

Modern historians in India are taking a second look at the way the country's freedom was achieved, and in that process are demolishing a number of theories, assumptions and myths preached by the "court historians." However, in order to grasp the magnitude of the issue, with its many ramifications, it is essential to understand first the concept of freedom as envisaged by Netaji -- the ideal which motivated him to wrest it from the hands of the British by the force of arms. In his entire political career, Subhas Chandra Bose was guided by two cardinal principles in his quest for his country's emancipation: that there could be no compromise with alien colonialists on the issue, and that on no account would the country be partitioned. The Indian geographical unity was to be maintained at all costs.
As we have already seen, the unfortunate turn of events during World War II prevented Netaji's dream of his victorious march to Delhi at the head of his Indian National Army from becoming a reality. In his and his army's absence in a post-war India, politicians under the leadership of Gandhi and Nehru did exactly what Netaji never wanted: they negotiated and compromised with the British on the issue of freedom, and in their haste to get into power, agreed to a formula of partitioning India presented to them by the British. The transfer of power was followed by two more developments that were alien to Netaji's philosophy and his blueprint for a free India: introduction of a parliamentary democratic system by Nehru and his decision to keep India in the British Commonwealth of Nations. It was a truncated freedom, achieved over the bloodbath of millions who had perished in fratricidal religious rioting during the process of partition, as the erstwhile India emerged on the world map as the two nations of India and Pakistan. Even so, the fragmented freedom that fen as India's share after the British had skillfully played their age-old game of divide and rule came not as a result of Gandhi's civil disobedience and non-violent movement as the court historians would have us believe; nor was it due to persistent negotiations by Nehru and other Indian National Congress leaders on the conference table, which the British found so easy to keep stalling. The British finally quit when they began to feel the foundations of loyalty being shaken among the British Indian soldiers-the mainstay of the colonial power-as a result of the INA exploits that became known to the world after the cessation of hostilities in East Asia.
Ramesh Chandra Majumdar, the eminent Indian historian who passed away recently, and who by virtue of his challenges to several historical myths can rightly be called the Dean of new historians in India, observed in his book Three Phases of India's Struggle for Freedom:
There is, however, no basis for the claim that the Civil Disobedience Movement directly led to independence. The campaigns of Gandhi ... came to an ignoble end about fourteen years before India achieved independence ... During the First World War the Indian revolutionaries sought to take advantage of German help in the shape of war materials to free the country by armed revolt. But the attempt did not succeed. During the Second World War Subhas Bose followed the same method and created the INA. In spite of brilliant planning and initial success, the violent campaigns of Subhas Bose failed ... The Battles for India's freedom were also being fought against Britain, though indirectly, by Hitler in Europe and Japan in Asia. None of these scored direct success, but few would deny that it was the cumulative effect of all the three that brought freedom to India. In particular, the revelations made by the INA trial, and the reaction it produced in India, made it quite plain to the British, already exhausted by the war, that they could no longer depend upon the loyalty of the sepoys for maintaining their authority in India. This had probably the greatest influence upon their final decision to quit India..READ+

INA'S Impact on India's Independence


Indian National Army
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
This article focuses on the Second INA under Subhas Chandra Bose. For the organisation under Mohan Singh, see First INA.
Indian National Army

August 1942- September 1945
Azad Hind
Guerrilla Infantry, Special Operations.
43,000 (approx)
Ittefaq, Itmad aur Qurbani(Unity, Faith and Sacrifice) (Hindustani)
Quick - Kadam Kadam Badaye Ja
Battle of Ngakyedauk, Battle of Imphal, Battle of Kohima, Burma Campaign, Battle of Pokoku, Battle of Central Burma.
Ceremonial chief
Subhash Chandra Bose
Major General M.Z KianiMajor General S.N. KhanColonel Ganpat Ram NagarColonel P.K. SahgalColonel S.H. Malik
The ensign of the springing Tiger
The Indian National Army (INA) or Azad Hind Fauj (Hindi: आज़ाद हिन्द फ़ौज) was an armed force formed by Indian nationalists in 1942 in Southeast Asia during World War II.
The aim of the army was to overthrow the British Raj in colonial India, with Japanese assistance. Initially composed of Indian prisoners of war captured by Japan in her Malayan campaign and at Singapore, it later drew large numbers of volunteers from Indian expatriate population in Malaya and Burma..read more.

The Royal Indian Navy Mutiny

The INA trials, the stories of Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose, as well as the stories of INA's fight during the Siege of Imphal and in Burma were seeping into the glaring public-eye at the time. These, received through the wireless sets and the media, fed discontent and ultimately inspired the sailors to strike. In Karachi, mutiny broke out on board the Royal Indian Navy ship, HMIS Hindustan off Manora Island. The ship, as well as shore establishments were taken over by mutineers. Later, it spread to the HMIS Bahadur. A naval central strike committee was formed on 19 February 1946, led by M. S. Khan and Madan Singh. The next day, ratings from Castle and Fort Barracks in Bombay, joined in the mutiny when rumours (which were untrue) spread that HMIS Talwar's ratings had been fired upon. Ratings left their posts and went around Bombay in lorries, holding aloft flags containing the picture of Subhash Chandra Bose. Several Indian naval officers who opposed the strike and sided with the British were thrown off the ship by ratings. Soon, the mutineers were joined by thousands of disgruntled ratings from Bombay, Karachi, Cochin and Vizag. Communication between the various mutinies was maintained through the wireless communication sets available in HMIS Talwar. Thus, the entire revolt was coordinated. The strike by the Naval ratings soon took serious proportions. Hundreds of strikers from the sloops, minesweepers and shore establishments in Bombay demonstrated for 2 hours along Hornby Road near VT (now the very busy D.N. Road near CST). British personnel of the Defence forces were singled out for attacks by the strikers who were armed with hammers, crowbars and hockey sticks. The White Ensign was lowered from the ships...read more

Essays On Gandhi

Reflections On Gandhi

by George Orwell

Saints should always be judged guilty until they are proved innocent, but the tests that have to be applied to them are not, of course, the same in all cases. In Gandhi's case the questions on feels inclined to ask are: to what extent was Gandhi moved by vanity - by the consciousness of himself as a humble, naked old man, sitting on a praying mat and shaking empires by sheer spiritual power - and to what extent did he compromise his own principles by entering politics, which of their nature are inseparable from coercion and fraud? To give a definite answer one would have to study Gandhi's acts and writings in immense detail, for his whole life was a sort of pilgrimage in which every act was significant. But this partial autobiography, which ends in the nineteen-twenties, is strong evidence in his favor, all the more because it covers what he would have called the unregenerate part of his life and reminds one that inside the saint, or near-saint, there was a very shrewd, able person who could, if he had chosen, have been a brilliant success as a lawyer, an administrator or perhaps even a businessman...read+

Gandhi and the myth of non-violence
Simon O'Neill

Mahatma Gandhi is feted as the leader of the non-violent campaign for India's independence. Many believe he showed how to change the world peacefully. But as Simon O'Neill explains, this is a myth that hides the truth about both the independence movement, and Gandhi's role in it.
The independence movement was ultimately held back by Gandhi's elitist ideas. According to George Orwell, who was a police officer in India, "Gandhi made it easier for the British to rule India, because his influence was always against taking any action that would make any difference." (The Collected Essays, Journalism and Letters of George Orwell, Vol. 2, p136.)..read more

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Sri Aurobindo And Hinduism

By Peter Heehs
Sri Aurobindo Ashram Archives And reserch Library,Pondicherry India


As a result of this unreflective approach to hindu scriptures,the religion had become unconventional and someyimes even corrupt,it needed to be reformed,it's present mould broken and replaced but he stressed this had to be done by knowledge and yoga,not by the european spirit,and it is an indian,not an english mould that must replace it..READ MORE

Peter Heehs writes on modern Indian history, and Indian spirituality and religion. Much of his work focuses on the Indian political and spiritual leader Sri Aurobindo. His publications include nine books and more than forty articles in journals and magazines.

His latest book, The Lives of Sri Aurobindo, was released by Columbia University Press in May 2008.
peter heehs dot net

Sri Aurobindo's letter's To Barin And Deshbandhu


SRI AUROBINDOEarly plans to Take Up External Work(Three letters from the year 1922)
Arya Office,Pondicherry
The 18th November 1922
Dear Barin,[ = Barindra Kumar Ghose, Sri Aurobindo's younger brother.]
I understand from your letter that you need a written authority from me for the work I have entrusted to you and a statement making your position clear to those whom you have to approach in connection with it. You may show to anyone you wish this letter as your authority and I hope it will be sufficient to straighten things for you.I have been till now and shall be for some time longer withdrawn in the practice of a Yoga destined to be a basis not for withdrawal from life, but for the transformation of human life. It is a Yoga in which vast untried tracts of inner experience and new paths of Sadhana had to be opened up and which, therefore, needed retirement and long time for its completion. But the time is approaching, though it has not yet come, when I shall have to take up a large external work proceeding from the spiritual basis of this Yoga.It is, therefore, necessary to establish a number of centres small and few at first but enlarging and increasing in number as I go on, for training in this Sadhana, one under my direct supervision, others in immediate connection with me. Those trained there will be hereafter my assistants in the work I shall have to do, but for the present these centres will be not for external work but for spiritual training and Tapasya.The first, which will be transferred to British India when I go there, already exists at Pondicherry, but I need funds both to maintain and to enlarge it. The second I am founding through you in Bengal. I hope to establish another in Gujerat during the ensuing year.Many more desire and are fit to undertake this Sadhana than I can at present admit and it is only by large means being placed at my disposal that I can carry on this work which is necessary as a preparation for my own return to action.I have empowered you to act for me in the collection of funds and other collateral matters. I have an entire confidence in you and I would request all who wish me well to put in you the same confidence.I may add that this work of which I have spoken is both personally and in a wider sense my own and it is not being done and cannot be done by any other for me. It is separate and different from any other work that has been or is being carried on by others under my name or with my approval. It can be done by myself aided closely by those like you who are being or will in future be trained directly under me in my spiritual discipline.
Aurobindo GHOSE
2.Arya OfficePondicherry,
the 18th Nov. 1922
Dear Chitta,[ = Chittaranjan Das, one of Sri Aurobindo's Nationalist collaborators and a famous lawyer. He had defended Sri Aurobindo in the Alipore Bomb Case]
It is a long time, almost two years I think, since I have written a letter to anyone. I have been so much retired and absorbed in my Sadhana that contact with the outside world has till lately been reduced to minimum. Now that I am looking outward again, I find that circumstances lead me to write first to you. I say, circumstances because it is a need that makes me take up the pen after so long a disuse.The need is in connection with the first outward work that I am undertaking after this long inner retirement. Barin has gone to Bengal and will see you in connection with it, but a word from me is perhaps necessary and therefore I send you through Barin this letter. I am giving also a letter of authority from which you will understand the immediate nature of the need for which I have sent him to raise funds. But I may add something to make it more definite.I think you know my present idea and the attitude towards life and work to which it has brought me. I have become confirmed in a perception which I had always, less clearly and dynamically then, but which has now become more and more evident to me, that the true basis of work and life is the spiritual, - that is to say, a new consciousness to be developed only by Yoga. I see more and more manifestly that man can never get out of the futile circle the race is always treading until he has raised himself on to the new foundation. I believe also that it is the mission of India to make this great victory for the world. But what precisely was the nature of the dynamic power of this greater consciousness? What was the condition of its effective truth? How could it be brought down, mobilised, organised, turned upon life? How could our present instruments, intellect, mind, life, body be made true and perfect channels for this great transformation? This was the problem I have been trying to work out in my own experience and I have now a sure basis, a wide knowledge and some mastery of the secret. Not yet its fulness and complete imperative presence - therefore I have still to remain in retirement. For I am determined not to work in the external field till I have the sure and complete possession of this new power of action, not to build except on a perfect foundation.But still I have gone far enough to be able to undertake one work on a larger scale than before - the training of others to receive this Sadhana and prepare themselves as I have done, for without that my future work cannot even be begun. There are many who desire to come here and whom I can admit for the purpose, there are a greater number who can be trained at a distance; but I am unable to carry on unless I have sufficient funds to be able to maintain a centre here and one or two at least outside. I need therefore much larger resources than I at present command. I have thought that by your recommendation and influence you may help Barin to gather them for me. May I hope that you will do this for me?One word to avoid a possible misunderstanding. Long ago I gave to Motilal Roy of Chandannagar the ideas and some principles and lines of a new social and economical organisation and education and this with my spiritual force behind him he has been trying to work out in his own way in his Sangha. This is quite a separate thing from what I am now writing about, my own work which I must do myself and no one can do for me.I have been following with interest your political activities, specially your present attempt to give a more flexible and practically effective turn to the non-cooperation movement. I doubt whether you will succeed against such contrary forces, but I wish you success in your endeavour. I am most interested however in your indications about Swaraj; for I have been developing my own ideas about the organisation of a true Indian Swaraj and I shall look forward to see how far yours will fall in with mine.
3. Pondicherry
lst December 1922
Dear Barin,[ = Barindra Kumar Ghose, Sri Aurobindo's younger brother.] I waited for your letter in order to know precisely what portions Chittaranjan wanted to publish and why [Sri Aurobindo speaks of the letter #2 above].
It turns out to be as I saw, but I wanted confirmation. I must now make clear the reasons why I hesitated to sanction the publication.I should have had no objection to the publication of the portion about the spiritual basis of life or the last paragraph about Swaraj. But that about non-cooperation would lead, I think, to a complete misunderstanding of my real position. Some would take it to mean that I accept the Gandhi programme subject to the modifications proposed by the committee. As you know, I do not believe that the Mahatma's principle can be the true foundation or his programme the true means of bringing out the genuine freedom and greatness of India, her Swarajya and Samrajya. On the other hand others would think that I was sticking to the school of Tilakite nationalism. That also is not the fact, as I hold that school to be out of date. My own policy, if I were in the field, would be radically different in principle and programme from both, however it might coincide in certain points. But the country is not yet ready to understand its principle or to execute its programme.Because I know this very well, I am content to work still on the spiritual and psychic plane, preparing there the ideas and forces, which may afterwards at the right moment and under the right conditions precipitate themselves into the vital and material field, and I have been careful not to make any public pronouncement as that might prejudice my possibilities of future action. What that will be will depend on developments. The present trend of politics may end in abortive unrest, but it may also stumble with the aid of external circumstances into some kind of simulacrum of self-government. In either case the whole real work will remain to be done. I wish to keep myself free for it in either case.My interest in Das's actions and utterances apart from all question of personal friendship, arises first from the fact that the push he is giving, although I do not think it likely to succeed at present, may yet help to break the narrow and rigid cadre of the "Constructive" Bardoli programme which seems to me to construct nothing and the fetish-worship of non-cooperation as an end in itself rather than a means, and thereby to create conditions more favourable for the wide and complex action necessary to prepare the true Swarajya. Secondly, it arose from the rapidity with which he seems to be developing many of the ideas which I have long put down in my mind as essentials of the future. I have no objection to his making use privately of what I have written in the letter. But I hope he will understand why the publication of it does not recommend itself to me.
in SABCL, volume 26 "On Himself", pages 435-439published by Sri Aurobindo Ashram - Pondicherrydiffusion by SABDA

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Gandhi's letters to Adolf Hitler

Mahatma Gandhi's letters to Hitler
Dr. Koenraad ELST
Mahatma Gandhi's admirers are not in the habit of confronting embarrassing facts about their favourite saint. His critics, by contrast, gleefully keep on reminding us of a few facts concerning the Mahatma which seem to undermine his aura of wisdom and ethical superiority. One of the decisive proofs of Gandhi's silly lack of realism, cited by both his Leftist and his Hindutva detractors, is his attempted correspondence with Adolf Hitler, undertaken with a view to persuading Germany's dictator of the value of non-violence. I will now take upon myself the ungrateful task of arguing that in this attempt, Gandhi was (1) entirely Gandhian, and (2) essentially right.
Gandhi's first letter to Hitler
Both of Gandhi's letters to Hitler are addressed to "my frie?nd". In the case of anyone else than the Mahatma, this friendliness would be somewhat strange given the advice which Hitler had tendered to the British government concerning the suppression of India's freedom movement. During a meeting with Lord Halifax in 1938, Hitler had pledged his support to the preservation of the British empire and offered his formula for dealing with the Indian National Congress: kill Gandhi, if that isn't enough then kill the other leaders too, if that isn't enough then two hundred more activists, and so on until the Indian people will give up the hope of independence. Gandhi may of course have been unaware of Hitler's advice, but it would also be charac?teristically Gandhian to remain friendly towards his own would-be killer.
Some people will be shocked that Gandhi called the ultimate monster a "friend". But the correct view of sinners, view which I imbibed as the "Christian" view but which I believe has universal validity, is that they are all but instances of the general human trait of sinfulness. Hitler's fanaticism, cruelty, coldness of heart and other reprehensible traits may have differed in intensity but not in essence with those very same traits in other human beings. As human beings gifted with reason and conscience, sinners are also not beyond redemption: your fiercest persecutor today may repent and seek your friendship tomorrow. If Gandhi could approach heartless fanatics like Mohammed Ali Jinnah in a spirit of friendship, there is no reason why he should have withheld his offer of friendship from Hitler...read more

Who Was Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi?

In the Mother's War Sri Aurobindo took full charge of the situation. Behind Hitler's success Sri Aurobindo saw the working of a powerful Asura in the task of “enslavement of mankind to the tyranny of evil.” This would have been a setback for the course of spiritual evolution for which Sri Aurobindo was working.
Not only did he apply his yogic force when such catastrophic events were taking place; he and the Mother also made a monetary contribution to the War fund. In their letter to the Governor of Madras dated 19 September 1940 they declared: “We feel that not only is this a battle waged in just self-defence and in defence of the nations threatened with the world-domination of Germany and the Nazi system of life, but that it is a defence of civilisation and its highest attained social, cultural and spiritual values and of the whole future of humanity. To this cause our support and sympathy will be unswerving whatever may happen; we look forward to the victory of Britain and, as the eventual result, an era of peace and union among the nations and a better and more secure world-order.” Who in this land of ours had the idea of the disaster that was waiting for mankind in the victory of the Nazi way of life, of Hitler's running over nations and countries? None. It seems that we had lost our heads and our souls. If at all there was the charismatic appeal to the gullible to side with the devil in his doings. The one who had proclaimed himself as the Lord of the Nations, the Asuric power of Falsehood, had found in Hitler his perfect instrument in the gruesome task of annihilation of the world
. Here was Mahatma Gandhi with the ethico-religious mind recommending submission to the Falsehood that was at the basis of this dark creation. The Times letter in July 1940 addressed to the Britishers runs as follows: “I want you to fight Nazism without arms, or, if I am to retain the military terminology, with non-violent arms. I would like you to lay down the arms you have as being useless for saving you or humanity. You will invite Herr Hitler and Signor Mussolini to take what they want of the countries you call your possessions. Let them take possession of your beautiful island, with your many beautiful buildings. You will give all these but neither your souls nor your minds. If these gentlemen choose to occupy your homes, you will vacate them. If they do not give you free passage out, you will allow yourselves man, woman and child, to be slaughtered, but you will refuse to owe allegiance to them.” Putting such an ultra-Christian doctrine on the highest pedestal of ethical excellence, making it an eminent principle of administration in the daily mode of life of the individual as well as of a whole society is not only to dwarf them; in fact, in its cruellest sense it is to turn all towards anti-humanity...read more

Remembering Netaji

Remembering Netaji: Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose’s nephew Sisir Bose (left) with West Bengal Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee at the 112th birthday celebrations of the great patriot in Kolkata on Friday.
KOLKATA: Historians have yet to accord Netaji the position he deserves, West Bengal Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee said here on Friday on the occasion of the 112th birth anniversary of Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose.
“Netaji’s ideals are still relevant today. He has left an indelible mark on the political thought and consciousness of the country and researchers were finding new meanings and inspiration from his writings…His vision was of a socialist and secular independent India,” Mr. Bhattacharjee said, after paying floral tributes to Netaji at his statue. “The world today is being rocked by terrorism; capitalism is pushing it from one crisis to another” the Chief Minister said.No religion
“Terrorism has no religion,” he said, pointing out that it is unfortunate that some politicians are blaming the Muslims for the Mumbai terror attacks; but the minority community was not responsible for the Malegaon blasts.
Mr. Bhattacharjee said exploitation by big capital and the resulting economic crisis had spread across the world.
Capitalism will remain capitalism, he said, sceptical whether the change in the U.S. presidency will change matters...THE HINDU
Netaji Subhas Bose On Sri Aurobindo
"In my undergraduate days Aurobindo Ghose was easily the most popular leader in Bengal, despite his voluntary exile and absence since 1910. His was a name to conjure with. He had sacrificed a lucrative career in order to devote himself to politics. On the Congress platform he had stood up as a champion of left-wing thought and fearless advocate of independence at a time when most of the leaders, would talk... only of colonial self-government. He had undergone incarceration with perfect equanimity...
When I came to Calcutta, in 1913, Aurobindo was already a legendary figure. Rarely have I seen people speak of a leader with such rapturous enthusiasm and many were the anecdotes of this great man, some of them probably true, which travelled from mouth to mouth.
[Aurobindo's] letters would pass rapidly from hand to hand, specially in circles interested in spirituality-cum-politics. In our circle usually somebody would read the letter aloud and the rest of us would enthuse over it... We felt convinced that spiritual enlightenment was necessary for effective national service".

Netaji's Ideals And Struggles

Netaji: Collected Works: Volume 1: An Indian Pilgrim: An Unfinished Autobiography
Subhas Chandra Bose, Sugata Bose (Editor), Sugata Rose (Editor)
About this title: This autobiography evokes the socio-cultural environment in which Subhas Chandra Bose grew up and the lineaments of his intellectual development.
Subhas Chandra Bose IN BURMESE PRISONS: Correspondence May 1923 - July 1926 edited by Sisir K. Bose
Subhas Chandra Bose’s exile in Burmese prisons from 1924 to 1927 witnessed the transformation of a lieutenant into a leader. During the non-cooperation movement and its aftermath he had wholeheartedly accepted Deshbandhu Chitta Ranjan Das as his political mentor. The apprenticeship was cut short by Deshbandhu’s death in June 1925. When Subhas received this terrible news as a prisoner in Mandalay, he felt “desolate with a sense of bereavement”, as he wrote to his friend Dilip Kumar Roy. Netaji’s letters cover a very wide array of topics—art, music, literature, nature, education, folk culture, civic affairs, criminology, spirituality, and, of course, politics. He bore the rigours of prison life with a combination of stoicism and humour. This volume is indispensable to an understanding of India’s greatest revolutionary leader and will interest all historians of modern India.

Netaji Subhas Confronted the Indian Ethos (1900-1921) : Yogi Sri Aurobindo's 'Terrorism', Poet Tagore's 'Universalism', and Mahatma Gandhi's 'Experimental Non-Violence'/Adwaita P. Ganguly. Dehra Dun, Vedantic Research Centre, 2003, xviii, 224 p., photographs, ISBN 81-87530-04-9.
"In our first work entitled Life and Times of Netaji Subhas: From Cuttack to Cambridge (1897-1921) we explored how Subhas Chandra Bose had constructed his philosophy of life. It was a difficult task, but we did it with scientific precision, within an artistic framework of five chapters.
"The present work is a bridge between the previous work on Subhas and the next work entitled Life and Times of Netaji Subhas: From Cambridge to Mahatma (1921-41). In the previous work, 'chapter one' elaborates the central philosophy of Vedanta, as interpreted by Vivekananda - the spiritual Guru of Subhas; 'chapter two' is an interpretation of Subhas's family background and early schooling; 'chapter three' delves into what happened to him when he confronted Calcutta; 'chapter four' tells about his various experiences in England culminating in his resignation from the Indian Civil Service; and finally 'chapter five' is about Subhas's philosophy of life that he constructed by exploring both Indian and Western thought. Subhas summed up his philosophy on 'reality' thus: "reality....is spirit, essence of which is love, gradually unfolding itself in an eternal play of conflicting forces and their solutions" (An Indian Pilgrim, p. 144).....This work is also indispensable for those who are interested in knowing the ideological basis of India's struggle for independence, and how Subhas discovered the gaps in the ideals cherished by Sri Aurobindo, Tagore, and Gandhi. Through his analytical intellect, he worked out his 'action-plan' which ultimately forced the British to quit India, but at the cost of the greatest human tragedy, owing to the wrong policy of Mahatma Gandhi towards appeasement of the minority communities." (jacket)...read+

Institute for Historical Review
Subhas Chandra Bose and India's Struggle for Independence
By Andrew Montgomery
When one thinks of the Indian independence movement in the 1930s and early 1940s, two figures most readily come to mind: Mahatma Gandhi, the immensely popular and "saintly" frail pacifist, and his highly respected, Fabian Socialist acolyte, Jawaharlal Nehru.
Less familiar to Westerners is Subhas Chandra Bose, a man of com­parable stature who admired Gandhi but despaired at his aims and methods, and who became a bitter rival of Nehru. Bose played a very active and prominent role in India's political life during most of the 1930s. For example, he was twice (1938 and 1939) elected Pres­ident of the Indian National Congress, the country's most important political force for freedom from the Raj, or British rule.
While his memory is still held in high esteem in India, in the West Bose is much less revered, largely because of his wartime collaboration with the Axis powers. Both before and during the Second World War, Bose worked tirelessly to secure German and Japanese support in freeing his beloved homeland of foreign rule. During the final two years of the war, Bose -- with considerable Japanese backing -- led the forces of the Indian National Army into battle against the British...READ MORE