|VOL. 1 NO. 13 DELHI: Bhadrapad Shukla 11, September 25, 1947 FOUR ANNAS|
There is a certain unconscious wisdom in some fables, according to which the soul, or the vital principle of life, of some giants and magician, was to be found outside the body. There was a jinn who could not be killed because his soul dwelt in the body of a bird, but as soon as the bird’s neck was wrung the evil spirit fell down dead.
The ancient world threw many fine flowers of civilization and culture. Many nations and races made wonderful progress in the art of living and achieved a high level of intellectual advancement. They craved out vast and extensive empires, but all those races and nations, the civilizations and cultures that they developed have succumbed to the ravages of time.
In sharp contrast to this, Hindusthan, its civilization and culture developed and perfected … the dawn of creation live to this day. Its culture even bids fair to become the most fruitful sources of the world culture of tomorrow. Whence comes this vitality, the question arises.
Dead is Egypt, dead are her gods, Isis and Osiris are mere names. Hammon, Lord of Eternity, has passed away into eternity. Ptah, maker of the world no longer looks after the world. Babylon and Assyria, by words for progress in their time, merely rouse the rummaging curiosity of the sociologist. Time has pushed byzantine into the dustbin of History. Iran and its culture, lie submerged beneath the lava spit by the volcano of Islam, to this day. The culture of Greece and Rome, the torch bearer in the West, is so thickly overlaid with the dust of ages that it defies recognition. Macedonia and Sparta enjoyed but brief periods of magnificence but the fate that med them is too tragic for words. Even China after attaining a fairly long life has been thrown on the sand bank by the flowing stream of time.
Hindusthan too has been overrun by the foreigner; many a time in her long history. She too has known periods of shameful subservience to her masters. But whereas while her contemporaries have ceased to exist, she has not have ceased to exist, she has not only survived but maintained and developed her civilisation and culture. Different races penetrated the country but only to be absorbed; those who came to conquer remained to lose themselves in the ocean of Hindu humanity. Many cultures struggled for supremacy in this land but she ground and modeled all of them into her own likeness; they were just grist to her mill. Rather, these struggles marked new levels of achievement for the Hindu spirit. She has lived through recurrent centuries of war and pestilence. She has triumphed over natural calamities and human misrule.
Loyalty of Religion
A study of Hindusthan’s history unravels the mystery of the longevity of her span of life. Although Hindusthan, through trickery and treachery, had to acknowledge defeat repeatedly in the battlefield but never even in her darkest hour she was disloyal to her religion.
Three religions of the world have tried one after another to uproot the ancient faith from Hindusthan but they failed, Hinduism has been able to hold its own against religions backed by state because it possessed amazing power of resilience.
It is this steadfast faith in her religion that has saved Hindsthan from extinction through countless centuries. She is like a vessel that has held fast to her moorings in all weather. She has been wave-tossed and storm-swept but her cable has never parted, nor has her anchor been dragged about. The ordeal to which Hindusthan has had to submit, time after time, has not been experienced by any other people. But through all her weakness and degradation, she retained the strength of loyalty — loyalty to the scriptures and teachers of the past, loyalty to the glorious traditions. She has run the gauntlet of conquest and bondage, she has been wrought upon by fear, persuasion and temptation to fling away her old faith and choose another, but she refused to part with her religion which is her soul. So long as that religion lives, Hindustan will live and even win back her self-respect and proud place among the nations of the worl.
The deep religious stirring that is moving Hindusthan from end to end is a sign of returning life. Let those who mistook her religious torpor for death take congnizance of this.