Pseudo-Secularism

Hindu dharma is implicitly at odds with monotheistic intolerance. What is happening in India is a new historical awakening... Indian intellectuals, who want to be secure in their liberal beliefs, may not understand what is going on. But every other Indian knows precisely what is happening: deep down he knows that a larger response is emerging even if at times this response appears in his eyes to be threatening.

Sunday, March 25, 2007

A great harbinger of Hindu renaissance

V SUNDARAM
newstodaynet.com

Ever since the dawn of history, Bharat Varsha has always produced great saints and sages in every age, who have made the same supreme discovery - that the God they sought for so many years was no different than their own selves. Each generation has been blessed by these enlightened souls who spread only goodness throughout the length and breadth of India and who had the power to grant a divine boon - the boon of perfect wisdom. Sri Madhavarao Sadasivarao Golwalkar (1906-1973), Sri Guruji as he came to be affectionately called, belonged to this great tradition. Through his glorious life of selfless service and supreme sacrifice, Sri Guruji gave this message to all his countrymen: 'When the mysterious Unity between the soul and the Divine becomes clear, you will realise that you are none other than God. You will see all your actions as His actions; all your features as His features; all your breaths as His breath'. This was the vision of Sri Guruji who was a perfect human being and this was the vision he imparted to all the Swayamsevaks of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS).

Our great nation has been celebrating the birth centenary of Sri Guruji Golwalkar, the II Sarsanghachalak of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh, during the last one year. Sri Guruji succeeded the founder of the RSS and epoch-maker Dr. Keshav Baliram Hedgewar (1889-1940). Under Sri Guruji's inspiring and outstanding leadership, the RSS grew rapidly from 1940 to 1947. However, unfortunately for the country, Islam-embracing, Christianity-coveting and Hindu-hating Congress party in power under the effete leadership of an effeminate Prime Minister like Nehru viewed the growing popularity of the RSS among the people of India as a potential challenge to its monopoly of power after 15 August, 1947. It was a moment of infamy in our national history when the anti-Hindu Congress Working Committee requested the Government to ban the RSS. This was three months prior to the assassination of Mahatma Gandhi.

The aim of the Government of India in political collusion with the Congress Party was to isolate the RSS as a cultural organization against the background of the popular sentiments and emotions that were aroused following Mahatma Gandhi's assassination. Sri Guruji was illegally detained without any charge from February 1948 to August 1948. Later, when he requested the Government of India to lift the ban on the RSS, Nehru and Patel covered themselves with eternal disgrace when they told Sri Guruji that they would 'consider lifting of the ban only if Sri Guruji agreed to merge the RSS with the Congress Party.' Sri Guruji, as a true and ardent Hindu, firmly rooted in the traditions of Sanatana Dharma, politely refused to get himself baptised in the holy (!) waters of Nehruvian pseudo-secularism. On his refusal to join the Congress, he was again illegally arrested in November 1948 and detained without a trial till 13 July, 1949. The government of India unconditionally and unilaterally lifted the ban only on 12 July, 1949. In short, Nehru and Patel endeavoured to use the indomitable might of the State to crush the heroic spirit of a great spiritual personality like Sri Guruji Golwalkar and finally kissed the dust with pseudo-secular shamelessness. They stood permanently shamed before the higher court of the world and of Time.

When Nehru and his sworn anti-Hindu fellow Congressmen were boasting in 1949 about the creation of a 'secular' State in India after independence, one of the leading correspondents of an English newspaper put this question to Sri Guruji Golwalkar, after he had just come out of illegal detention for more than eight months: 'How do you view our leaders proclaiming our State as 'secular?' Sri Guruji gave a fitting reply with firmness and dignity marked by great emotional understanding of India's political and cultural history. He said: 'Emphasising a State as 'secular,' from the point of view of a Hindu, is superfluous. All these centuries in the past, we have been able to maintain religious harmony in the country. The State was only keeping a close watch to see that the people did not fall out and thus render the State weak. Otherwise, all had their freedom of worship, etc. That was the concept followed by Hindu ideology.... Therefore, the qualifying word 'secular' is superfluous and unwanted from our point of view.'

At the end of the I Five Year Plan in 1956, when there was a government-sponsored artificial euphoria about the great success of the Plan, Sri Guruji came out with the right warning: 'The I Five Year Plan talked of achieving food self-sufficiency. But today nobody even talks of attaining it. In ancient Bharat the Kings always strove during harvest to store grains to last for three years. And now, we don't have enough even for current consumption. A Plan which does not plan for food self-sufficiency is no Plan.'

When the Government of India was waxing eloquent on the proposal for the establishment of a new steel plant in Bilai, Sri Guruji observed: 'They have requisitioned some 100 sq. miles of the best rice lands to build the steel city. Had they built it near the iron ore mines some 30 miles away -where land is uncultivable - this fertile track could have been spared. There is not even elementary coordination between industry and agriculture.'

Against this sad and sordid background, when Sri Guruji was asked by the correspondent of The Statesman in 1959: 'How shall we improve matters?, Sri Guruji replied: 'By giving up this craze for show, and canalising the patriotic feelings of the people. ...The country is being given the wrong lead. There is no glow of freedom. Nobody feels the incentive to work. Thousands go out every year for higher education, but few come back with any original idea. ... Only activised and canalised patriotism of the people can carry the country forward. No foreign aid or show pieces are going to do that for us.... We are beginning from the wrong end. Our emphasis is on 'gigantism.' The worst part of the so called 'socialist planning' is Statism and end of individual liberty. Statism is not the road to socialism. It is the way to authoritarianism at the top and serfdom at the bottom.'

Saint, sage, seer, venerable, profound and irrepressible, Sri Guruji was a Titan among men. With his finger constantly on the nation's pulse, with his unceasing concern for the resuscitation and regeneration of the country and its highest life-values, Sri Guruji functioned as a supreme leader to guide the people of India for 33 years from 1940 to 1973. Rising above the lures of position or power or personal glory, his single-minded devotion was to Bharat Mata and Bharat Varsha as a whole. His prophetic utterances always carried the ring and spirit of prophetic truth. He was known for his courageous and fearless espousal of the nation's cause, making no concession to any individual or party. Sri Guruji was fluent in all the 15 languages recognised by the Constitution and made it a point to converse with people and Swayamsevaks from different parts of India in their own mother tongue. Starting from 1943 till 1973, Sri Guruji traversed the country 72 times with tireless energy and Himalayan enthusiasm. No other great man in our nation's history has, it can be safely asserted, toured the country as extensively and as intensively as Sri Guruji. Soon after his last tour of the country, he passed away on the 5th of June, 1973.

Sri Guruji stood for Hindu unity, Hindu solidarity, Hindu cohesion and above all Hindu brotherhood at all costs, in spite of all terror and however long and hard the road may be. For Sri Guruji, without strong Hindu solidarity, there could be no national survival. In short, he was a matchless symbol and spearhead of the mighty movement of National Renaissance - the RSS � for well over three decades. Every moment of his life and in every thought, word and deed, he inhaled and exhaled the values of Sanatana Dharma.

Sri Guruji's time-defying message to all of us is this: 'Our existence as embodied beings is purely temporary; what are a hundred years in eternity; but if we shatter the chains of egotism, and melt into the ocean of Bharat Mata (representing humanity), we share its dignity. To feel that we are something is to set up a barrier between the Goddess of Bharat Mata and ourselves, to cease feeling that we are something is to become one with the Goddess of Bharat Mata. A drop in the ocean partakes of the greatness of its parent, although it is unconscious of it. But it is dried up as soon as it enters upon an existence independent of the ocean. As soon as we become one with the ocean in the shape of Bharat Mata, there is no more rest for us, nor indeed do we need rest any longer. Our very sleep is action. For we sleep with the thought of Bharat Mata in our hearts. This restlessness constitutes true rest. This never-ceasing agitation holds the key to peace ineffable.'

(The writer is a retired IAS officer)

e-mail the writer at vsundaram@newstodaynet.com

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