Today India is passing through a great trouble due to the corona pandemic and economic slowdown and so forth. ‘Sabka sath sabka vikash’ has been turned into a false sense of promise. It is more shocking when religious difference gets priority in a secular nation, even at this time of dreadful crisis.
Swami Vivekananda was one of the great architects of modern nationalism in India. According to him, Indian nationalism should be built on the stable foundation of the post historical heritage. ‘Religion in India has been a creative force of integration and stability.’ ‘He believed in universal toleration and not in social and religious imposition. Therefore, he can’t be charged with sectarianism or communalism.’ To him “patriotism means love of the country and country means its masses.
The Hindu extremists are now ignoring, “If one religion be true then all the others must be true.” Swamiji again expressed, “ I am blessful that I took birth in such a great Hindu religion that assimilate all religions.” It does mean that India’s nationalism would be rebuilt to driving off the Muslim. It never supports to make a Hindu state from its secular nature. The ruling government and its members have forgotten the Constitution of the Nation and their oath to protect the interest of the secular nation.
Here we remember also Swamiji who in his Chicago lecture (in the Parliament of Religion) said, ‘I am proud to belong to a religion which has taught the world both tolerance and universal acceptance. We believe not only in universal toleration, but we accept all religions as true. I am proud to belong to a nation which has sheltered the persecuted and the refugees of all religions and all nations of the earth. ………….‘As the different streams having their sources in different places all mingle their water in the sea, so, O Lord, the different paths which men take through different tendencies, various though they appear, crooked or straight, all lead to Thee.’
Referring to the Gita, he also shared, ‘Whosoever comes to Me, through whatsoever form, I reach him; all men are struggling through paths which in the end lead to Me.’ He warned, ‘Sectarianism, bigotry, and its horrible descendant, fanaticism, have long possessed this beautiful earth. They have filled the earth with violence, drenched it often and often with human blood, destroyed civilization, and sent whole nations to despair. Had it not been for these horrible demons, human society would be far more advanced than it is now.’ In his lecture of Hinduism, Swamiji opined, ‘Unity in variety is the plan of nature, and the Hindu has recognised it.’ Hinduism is not limited with ‘certain fixed dogmas, and tries to force society to adopt them.’
Hindu extremists are making self-contradiction in their religious faith. They also ignore even the Hindu in His incarnation as Krishna who proclaims, “ I am in every religion as the thread through a string of pearls. Wherever thou seest extraordinary holiness and extraordinary power raising and purifying humanity, know thou that I am there.’ ”
Those who have no respect to their own faith and believe, they would right neglect others’ faith. Communal disharmony and religious violence are their path to gain their narrow will. But this nation would never forgive them.
The views and opinions expressed by the writer are personal and do not necessarily reflect the official position of VOM.
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