A lot of hue and cry have begun recently regarding the narrative that Bhakti aandolan as well as subsequent spiritual resurgence played an important role in our freedom movement. Many self-proclaimed intellectuals are arguing that all these Bhakti Aandolans (movements) were purely spiritual in nature; related to social awakening against casteism, untouchability, superstition like Sati Daaha and social reforms such as women education, widow marriage etc and so these could have no remotest relation with freedom movement which is purely political; most of these Aandolans took place much before our freedom movement against the British and so these could have no influence on the same etc (as if Mughal, Pathan invasions or rules were purely Swadeshi or indigenous!)
There is no doubt that nationalists in the true sense should invariably consider Islamic rules as foreign rules.We, those who believe in the above mentioned narrative are not self-proclaimed intellectuals or never claim to be the same. We may be ignorant but if we consider this self-proclaimed intellectuals’ argument taken as granted, we should have to conclude that Netaji Subhash was also an ignorant fellow. Because, long before us he himself has endorsed such a view that from Ramamohan to Shri Ramkrishna – Vivekananda all had direct contribution in our National awakening through their spiritual preaching and teaching which ultimately lit the spark of our aspirations for ” complete autonomy from British control” through a message from Aurobindo heard for the first time in our National arena.
I am just trying to quote in this article the views of Netaji Subhash regarding this as reflected in his various writings and speeches compiled as a famous Bengali book titled” Taruner Swapna i.e ” Dreams of the youths” ( through verbatim translation so far as possible by me)
Subhash Chandra’s logical and in depth appreciation flows as:-
“15 years ago it was only Vivekananda’s ideology that inspired the Bengali students folk. Due to that influence Bengali were committed to live a pious life having been free from all sorts of contamination, selfishness of mind and having won over six evil senses ( Shadaripu) on the basis of spiritual power. The root of Nation building is- Personality development. That’s why Swami Vivekananda always said-‘ Man Making is my mission.”
Subhash continues, “Although he (Vivekananda) gave too much importance to personality development , he never forgot the importance of Nation. He didn’t believe in Sannyas devoid of Karma or deed and faith in faint- hearted destiny. Sree Ramakrishna realized the eternal oneness of all religious beliefs through his life-long Saadhana and that was the main inspiration or Mantra of Swamiji’s life and that was the bedrock of future Bharat’s National edifice. If this mutual harmony among and tolerance to – all the religious beliefs was not established, Nation building would not have been possible in our such heterogeneous or diverse country.”
Fundamental analysis of Subhash Chandra goes further, “Rammohan Roy was the pioneer of that new era began in our country before the Vivekananda- era. Rammohan was determined to destroy all the nuisance had been being committed in the name of Dharma and all the garbages and superstitions which divided the Hindu society in several ways……”
“The revolution that Rammohan introduced in our psychedelic, gradually spread in the society. Social reforms gained its momentum in the era of Keshav Chandra. New awakening began in the entire country due to the new messages delivered by Brahmo Samaj. After some years when Brahmo Samaj had become separate or discrete from Hindu society and awakening also began within the Hindu society, the influence of Brahmo Samaj began to decrease gradually.”
“Since the era of Rammohan, the aspiration for Bharat’s freedom has been gradually manifesting through several movements. In the 19th century this aspiration was evident in our thought process and society but not so in our National arena because having completely submerged in great sleep of bondage Bharatiyas were assuming that the conquest of the British over Bharat was a divine dispensation. In the late 19th century and the early 20th century indistinct presence of the integral form of freedom was noticed in the thoughts of Shri Ramakrishna – Vivekananda. ‘Freedom, Freedom is the song of the soul’, when this message burst out through the closed doors of Swamiji’s heart, it almost made the entire countrymen spellbound and extremely excited. Through his Saadhana, behaviour, words and speeches this very truth got revealed.”
Subhash Chandra’s thought provoking analysis continues,” Swami Vivekananda urged to all to be pure human being having been free from all sorts of bindings and on the other side he laid the foundation stone of Bharat’s National edifice through the preaching of religious harmony. Ramamohan Roy thought that, by nullifying the doctrine of personal god ( Saakaarvaad) and establishing Vedanta’s absolutism (Niraakaarvaad) he would be able to make our Nation stand on a sovereign foundation. Brahmo Samaj also followed that path but as a result the Hindu society as if moved away a little more. Then Shri Ramakrishna and Vivekananda tried to unify the Nation by preaching the truth of distinguished Dualism (Vishishtaadwaitavaad) or Dual- Nondualism (Dwaitaadwaitavaad) and tolerance to all religious beliefs.”
“The integral form of freedom noticed in Vivekananda’s thoughts did not enter into the National arena during Vivekananda- era. We heard the message of National independence from Aurobindo for the first time when Aurobindo Wrote in ‘Vande Mataram’ magazine,” We want complete autonomy from British control”- and freedom aspirant Bengali youths realized that ultimately they got the man of their choice. Emotional Bengali people overwhelmed with the dream of independent Bharat.
So, we can simply conclude from the above discussions that Netaji Subhash Chandra who dedicated his life for the sake of Bharat Mata and who is the burning symbol of vigour and renunciation – himself appreciated and admitted that all those spiritual resurgence had a direct contribution in our National awakening as well as freedom movement and those were not merely pure spiritual and social reforms in nature.
Hence, while we are talking the same that is not new at all but just the echo of his realisation and thought provoking analysis. We may be ignorant but the credibility and expertise of a person of the stature of Netaji Subhash Chandra in this regard is beyond any doubt. Because, Subhash is not merely a sample of so called self-proclaimed and sophisticated intellectuals who just use their intellect for their career, award, lavish life, name and fame in their respective field etc. His entire life, deed and character is the manifestation and embodiment of pure knowledge, wisdom and intellect. In the Bhagawat Geeta it is said –
“Yad yadaacharaty shreshthastattadevetaro janoh, Sa yat pramanang kurute lokastadanuvartate” i.e. common men follow the behaviour of great man. What he specifies as a proof, everyone follows the same. So we are just following Saadhana, behaviour, words, speeches, deeds and thoughts of Subhash Chandra and that is enough.
-by Subrata Kumar Bhaumik