Perpetual churning is the very basis of Bharatiya philosophy. Healthy discussion and creative dialogue have played a great role in the progress of this great nation. The distinctiveness of our knowledge- tradition is marked by its unique nature of imparting wisdom. It was neither a one- way affair nor a two- way lane. Yes, the mode and form of Bharatiya communication have always been multifaceted. The whole society takes part in it; not only that, nature too is taken into the consideration. Hence, our style of Samvaad is comprehensive, and to understand it properly, we’ve to see and feel it in its totality.
Another important aspect of our Samvaad tradition is the concept about its utility or the end result. Our ancient and modern Rishis have always stated it categorically that ‘this is not merely for the sake of debate, scoring a point, or winning at any cost, but for knowing and let to be known'. This win-win factor is to be taken into consideration whenever we think about the rich knowledge- tradition of Bharat.
As it has been mentioned in the beginning, our intellectual deliberations or Manthan (Churning) has always been a societal phenomenon. In that sense, Lokmanthan has an indomitable relevance. This will be the colloquium of those who think, and act accordingly. True representatives of our society are going to ponder over the nation and the issues that it is faced with. We have been one neither because of any totalitarian ruler, nor because of any Constitution or any common language. We were and are on, because we are a people having a common culture, tradition and custom. This commonality of our culture is manifested in the life of our ordinary people.
Beauty and strength of this ‘Indubitable cultural unity’ is that it reflects in each and every facet of our national life. Right from the mundane, secular matters to the lofty spiritual aspects, the underlying oneness can be felt. The uniqueness of our eternal Bharatiya spirit can be experienced from our attitude towards the environment, to the concept of sublimation and final emancipation of human life. In the songs sung by farmers, while sowing seeds and gathering yields in their fields, in the rhythms of the marching soldiers, and everywhere one can perceive the pulse of the nation clearly. Hence Sister Nivedita said in her seminal work, The web of Indian life: “Eating and bathing- with us chiefly selfish operations- are here great sacramental acts, guarded at all points by social honour and the passion of purity.”
So is the case of literature, drama, music, festivals, celebrations and everything else. Only thing, we need vision to find the unifying factors. It is not all that easy to find out the subtlest ingredients which bind us together, the cementing force that strengthens us. For that clarity of vision and intellectual churning are necessary. Here comes the importance of Lokmanthan. Here, in this colloquium, from top level intellectuals to down to earth practitioners, we are coming together. Philosophers and artists are putting their heads together to find out the ways and means to empower the society. Scientists and artisans are going to live under one roof to ponder over our country and her future, our times and our condition. In that way, it would be a unique experiment.
Along with the aforesaid aspects of our intrinsic strength that keep us united, there are the divisive forces working overtime to debilitate the Nation. We've to be aware of those dangerous trends growing in our society. Mainly, two segments are active in the disintegrating exercise. First one is the continuing effect of the colonisation that derailed our crucial intellectual system. As Dr Kottari had said in his Educational Commission report, the centre of gravity of our education has been shifted towards Europe. The main task of our educationists is to bring back it into our nation and make it Bharat-centric. But the strangest part of the whole story is, after 70 years of our independent life, we are still in search of a true national educational policy. See the force and impact of the colonial mindset in the most crucial area of our national life, the education. No need to elaborate much about other fields like history, social sciences, art, literature and Jurisprudence, etc. So it is our duty as well as moral obligation to search for a way out and formulate the modus operandi to decolonise the Indian minds.
Next one is the divisive ideology and activities of the forces, the votaries of the outdated class struggle theology. They are well-versed in unearthing our differences and constructing fault lines between the so-called classes. It is not a difficult task to point out the outward differences among men. Colour, body structure, dress, language, place of stay and birth cannot be same. But these Marxian theologians, posing themselves as great intellectuals, are trying to derive sadistic pleasure by raking up these flimsy and trivial matters. They are trying to create chaos and confusion in the society through an ideology that is defective in theory and dangerous in practice. Further, they have no love lost for Bharat. For them, Bharat is not a single nation, but a conglomeration of many different nationalities. And Stalin, from whom Indian Communists drew inspiration during his lifetime, and even later, wrote in 1925: “Nowadays India is spoken of as a single whole. Yet there can be hardly any doubt that in the case of a revolutionary upheaval in India many hitherto unknown nationalities, each with its own language and its own distinctive culture, will emerge on the scene.”
We believe in the philosophy of integration, not collision. We do follow the path of expansion, not contraction. Through every endeavour of our life, especially in the matter of intellectual deliberations, we are striving to expand our universe of existence. In that strenuous exercise our traditional habit is to surpass all sorts of little identities and merge with the larger identity. This is our age- old method of self- improvement and the way of liberation. In this Vichar Vimarsh we’re discussing these aspects in their minute details.
We, as a nation, are passing through a crucial period in the history. We’ve already turned into a nation of youngsters. Even otherwise, our nation is ancient and, at the same time, ever youthful. This large youth population is going to determine the destiny of our nation and, no doubt, of the world, too. When I say, the world too, it is not out of any narcissist tendency, and the words of the British historian, Arnold Toynbee, bear ample testimony to what I have said. He said: “So now we turn to India. This spiritual gift, that makes a man human, is still alive in Indian souls. Go on giving the world the Indian examples of it. Nothing else can do so much to help mankind to save itself from destruction.”
The most inspiring part of this development is its inspirational and aspirational nature. Our youngsters are enthusiastic, confident and industrious. They are the hope of our future. The need of the hour is to anchor their bubbling enthusiasm on the bedrock of our eternal and time-tested philosophy. They have to be saved from the confusions brought about by the divisive forces. It doesn't mean that something alien to their intellectual makeup is going to be imposed on them. Lokmanthan is to provide them a platform to think about themselves and their surroundings. It is giving them an opportunity to find out the means for the integral development of the nation and theirs too. Hence the focus and target of this whole exercise is certainly our enthusiastic youth who are brimming with inspiration as well as aspirations of the highest degree.
In short, Lokmanthan, a colloquium of ‘Nation First’ thinkers and practitioners is a public discourse platform to share, brainstorm and perorate on contemporary issues of the country that not only influences home but also the world. ‘Confluence of evolving nationalism, aspirations, social justice and harmony through empathy and sensitisation culminating into social mobility using development as an instrument’ is the moving mantra of the national convention.
(The writer is RSS Akhil Bharatiya