An orphan - he does not know who his father is, or who his mother is. He has been cared for all these years in an orphanage. He comes out with nobody to support him, to call his own, nobody to love him and none to love. Such a person will try to get money somehow, by fair means or foul, just to feed himself. He will plunder, burn, shoot and kill, if necessary, to achieve this end. Why does he do so? Because he has no self - respect.
On the other hand, an individual who belongs to a family, knows who his father and mother are, and who knows the tradition and the family - even when he is starving, he will not think of stealing, but rather of some constructive way of creating comfort. He may, under the pressure or the urgency of the need, come down a little, but there will always be a limit set by himself, thus far and no further. Why? Because I belong to that family, I respect my father – a kind of restraint comes upon him.
The quality of your behaviour will depend upon the respect that you have got for the association, the institution to which you belong -- may be caste, creed, religion, a nation or community. For this sense of belonging, I must know who my parents are and what they have done. Do they deserve my respect? Have they made any sacrifice for me? I don’t know that, and then I am a bastard - an orphan. I don’t know my father and I have no respect for my mother. Such an individual feels lonely in the world. He has no moral values to compare whether what he is doing is morally right or wrong.
Is it not true that today, when we try to solve our problems, the question of morality never comes up? Certainly, a Punjabi should get Punjab - he has the right to demand it. But look at what he does - putting bombs in ordinary buses, and that too, in Delhi, not bothering as to who dies. Is this the solution that your perverted intellect can find? This is because; our sense of belonging is not there. The Sikhs feel that the Hindus are useless.
Who are the Hindus? Their own fathers and mothers. Sikhs, as a community, never came from the clouds – they are the sons and daughters of Hindu mothers, and a Hindu mother offered her son to protect Hinduism for this great movement. Think…...!
These disintegrating forces are working all over the country. It is not only the Sikhs - it is absurd to say so. Disintegration is the first stage before a nation collapses. Just as the smoke rising from a building is the beginning of the entire building gutting down by fire, this is the beginning. It is not that I am forecasting. History teaches me so. Whether it is the Moghul Empire or any other empire - when they founded it, they were all together, united, integrated. After indulgence for some time, disintegration started, and that is the beginning of the end of that dynasty. That is why generally people take History because it is very easy to pass; the cause for growth and development of an empire is the same, and the cause for decay is also the same. They became more indulgent, more sensuous, more self - centered, more selfish and, therefore, neighbours who were relatively integrated, conquered them. Whether it is Greece or Rome or Egypt -- all over the world, this is the trend.
At the same time, I cannot blame my youngsters for not having this love for the country, or an awareness of what is happening around. They are the products of the education that been given to them even after Independence. Even the attempts at changing the education system were all corrupt. The ministers never thought of our culture and keep them inspired by the very word – “BHARAT”.
After centuries of condemning our country; we have now come to a point where we have no respect for the nation, no sense of belonging to the nation. All that we know is that the population is increasing. That is what the politicians tell us. to control population. Have they ever thought of what would happen if our neighbours, China, decided to attack us? At least we should be able to stand man to man.
I am talking of a political exigency. We can’t afford to reduce our population -- don’t say you can’t feed them. We have got enough land. Even today our villages are lying empty. Only the old villagers are going to the fields, the educated ones don’t want to roll up their sleeves and do manual work. They just want a job, a cushy cushy job in an air - conditioned room. That is why everyone is running madly to get trained in computers – to get an A / C room. If everyone wants to sit in an A / C room, where is the nation? Who is to sweat for it? Without any sacrifice, can we create anything?
Wealth is created by sweat. Dignity of a nation is created by sacrifice – this is true socialism. It is not population increase which is responsible for the state we are in, but production going down is the cause. That is why a westerner comes to India, studies everything and goes back and says there is God, because India is still living ! There is no other reason why we should be an economically viable and politically united nation except for God’s Grace. Think........!
Our education system is so wrong; history has no place in it. Without knowing the glory of the country, how can I love the country? If the younger generation is not prepared to sacrifice in order to build it, who is to do it? Political parties? It is squarely upon your shoulders – the shoulders of the younger generation to build your own future. Don’t wait for your father or mother to do it for you. Leave them alone, we shall look after them and feed them in their old age. It is entirely up to you to bring out the best in you. Study hard and as much as you can; develop your mind and intellect, and pour it out in the rebuilding of the country – not in terms of what I can get out from the society but in terms of what I can give to my younger brothers and sisters. Today’s Chyks can afford to be Brahmacharis – after all, we are Hindus, we believe in rebirth, we shall postpone our marriages for the next life. This life is to reorganize my values, my society, my nation. So, I sacrifice, even die, if necessary in order to build my nation. Without sacrifice, would there be a China today? – A China about which Napoleon had said “Let the sleeping dogs lie. To wake them up is a terrible thing, we will not be able to stand against them.” And here we are sleeping for such a long time !
To awaken you, we are singing the glories of your own country in a language, which you can understand – how the personality can be reconstructed, etc. But that only gives you a capacity to study well and score high in life. That is not sufficient. All the mental and intellectual energy has to be offered now for the rebuilding of the nation. This needs a lot of sacrifice and in spite of the outsiders and others in the country laughing at you and ridiculing your ideas, you must have the courage to stand against them and work. These are the glories of great men.
When Gandhiji said that he was planning to launch a non - violent movement, even Patel and others laughed at the idea. Even on the salt making march, he was all alone when he set out. By the time he crossed a few villages, a big crowd joined him, just out of curiosity. Others, because of the herd instinct. A crowd of newspapermen came to watch him. By the time he reached Bombay, all those who had laughed at him were slaves in adoration at his feet. Somebody has to start and you are being given the chance, which no other generation in recent times has got in our country. You are standing on the threshold – either you collapse or you revive. Let the revival be in your hands. This needs an enormous self - respect, enormous love and reverence for the country. What is the source from which I can gather the necessary energy?
You can’t stand against the vast crowd ridiculing you, unless you are inspired by an ideal. Unless you know the glory of the past, how can you work in the present and make sacrifices for rebuilding a future? Past, present and future are one intrinsic whole and not separate. Drawing inspiration form the past, we meet the challenges in the present. Unfortunately, our history tells us what a westerner thinks of our country until, at last, here we are creating a monster, a total disintegration. The Maharastrian wants Maharshtra, etc. It is not even economically viable for each state to be independent. Instead of that, we should understand that matter is nothing but atoms, and an atom is nothing but energy in motion, telling us that everything is one, while in our behaviour we are trying to disintegrate.
Against this disintegration, only the youth can save the country. If one Gandhi could inspire so many at that time, our Chyk members can inspire the youth. Living a life of Self - confidence and self - respect, proud of their country, and prepared to work to rebuild it with heads held above the clouds and hands and legs ready to make sacrifices and work, that is sufficient. Slowly it will become a fashion among the young, just as the churidar kurta – everyone is wearing it just because Rajiv Gandhi wears it. This is because the majority doesn’t have the originality. They survive only by imitating others in the country. You few must have the heroism to live that life of glory. If anyone asks what you are doing, have the guts to explain to them. Many of them will not understand, doesn’t matter – you start doing it. Now, the question is, who is to bell the cat?
At this moment when I look around either people are fanatical Hindus – they cannot do anything, or they have one - sided political views. They cannot save the country. Our simple Chyk members alone have the vision, the understanding, and the readiness to make sacrifices if only they take it up. I am not asking you to do it because it is not a thing that I can ask you to do. I need not tell you that you should love your wife – how can I give you love for your wife? You have to discover love for your wife. It is very intimate; it must spring forth from within yourself. Start thinking about it. What can I give to my country? Don’t expect the leaders to do it. They released us from the shackles of the British and thereafter sat back to share the spoils and spoilt the whole nation.
In this chaotic madness, the saner youth is our Chyks and when you start marching in the right direction with the right inspiration in yourself, you shall find erelong a crowd behind you. The old generation had died; a new youthful leadership has come which has tremendous mass appeal and support. If at this moment we start, the Government will be with us, even imitate us. All this depends upon the energy you can put forth. You cannot find the necessary energy unless you have the faith in the goal that you are trying to achieve – the glory of the nation about which great poets like Tagore and Bharati have sung till their throats were sore. All that we know is what the Americans have to say, what the Britishers have to say – and what do they have to say? That India is not a nation – it is a mere conglomeration of people; that Hinduism is not a religion but a way of life – as though religion and way of life are two different things. There cannot be a religion without a way of life. In fact, Religion is a ‘Way of Life’.
Have a vast vision. Just look at what we have done after independence and where we have landed – even if you realize that, it is enough. The rest will come automatically unless you are a damned generation and there is no future in this country, which I don’t believe. It is only the people in a country that make it a nation. INDIA, at this moment, is only a country, and not a nation. Each one sees his own problem – Punjab Problem, Assam Problem, Ahmedabad Problem. They don’t see and understand the country as a whole. They don’t realize that it is because of the country that the State has got any validity. The entity of the State is only for convenience in administration.
So, I want you children to rise above these limitations. See, in one sweep – the past, present and the possible future. From the Himalayas to Cape Comorin, it is my country. Everyone is my brother, be he a Christian or a Muslim. In India, there are only two societies – those who were Hindus, and those who are Hindus. The Indian tradition is a Hindu tradition because 82% are Hindus. If Hindus rise, the country rises, Redemption of Hindus is redemption of the country; the strength of Hindus is the strength of the country; the glory of Hindus is the glory of the country. The politicians are responsible for the present state of dirt and slime, but we are not going to spend time regretting it. We want to get out of it. You are responsible for the future of the country. I have said enough - the rest is for you to show in your actions
Chyk – Chinmaya Yuva Kendra is the youth wing of the Chinmaya Mission. The members of this wing are called Chyks
The above article is a talk given by Swami Chinmayananda to the youngsters of the Chinmaya Mission (Chyks)…. It is a call to each of us to get together and make a positive contribution to the nation…. WE CAN ! ……WE WILL ! !…. WE MUST ! ! !