Excerpts from Sri Chinmoy’s book “India, My India.”
What is India’s inner message to the world at large? Spirituality. What is spirituality? It is the natural way of truth that successfully communes with the Beyond here on earth.
What is India’s absolutely distinctive possession? Her soul. She lives in the soul, she lives from the soul and she lives for the soul.
Where can the world find the real nature of India? In the ever-wakeful domain of the Spirit.
What has made the history of India unique? A most surprising and unusual continuity of the line of her spiritual seekers and Masters.
What does Indian spirituality teach? It teaches the world to conquer the evil of the lower nature and to go beyond the good of the higher nature.
What is Mother India’s desire? It is to transcend the human way once and for all through radical self-transmutation, and to enter into the ever-dynamic Way of God.
Religion, however mighty it may be, is not and cannot be the message of India. Her message is Self-realisation. The perfect truth of India’s religion lies in its outer and inner realisation of the One that is, of the One that is in the process of becoming.
There is no more than a hyphen between the Vision of the Vedic seers and the soul of India, and between India’s spirituality and the final spiritual liberation of the world.
Today’s India is poverty-stricken. But tomorrow’s India will be prosperous. She will be a mighty wave of hope and faith. Her very thought will be stirred with a new vision. Infinite will be the possibilities on her horizon. Her sacrifice will build a more durable foundation for mankind. She will contain within herself nationalism and internationalism, becoming the true symbol of spirituality in action. India, with her spiritual power, will wield a tremendous influence on future generations. India and India alone is the nerve centre of the aspiring world.
India is the vault of an ancient, eternal wisdom that has a universal appeal. She is also the universal reserve bank of an ever-growing wisdom, and she is destined to be the hub and dynamo of world transformation. India’s strength is not in her arms, but in her heart.
She tells the world that the realisation of unity is the only strength which can conquer the world.
In the later periods of India’s history, the saints and seers came to feel that the material life and the spiritual life could never go together, that they had to renounce the outer life in order to attain God. Hence, the external life was neglected. This led to foreign conquests and many other troubles. Even today, the attitude that material prosperity and beauty should be negated is very common in India. This accounts for much of her continued poverty.
But at present there are spiritual giants in India who feel that God should be realised in His totality, that Creator and creation are one and inseparable. They advocate the acceptance of life, the real need for both progress and perfection in all spheres of human existence. India may be poverty-stricken today, but she will progress quickly by virtue of her new awareness and her new aspiration. She has not only magnanimity of heart but also the power to bring her soul’s strength to the fore and use it to solve all her problems.
Modern India will always keep the spirituality that was born countless years ago. It is true that human beings have become ultra-modern, so they may not or cannot or do not want to be strict with their spiritual life. There are millions and millions of people not only living abroad but also in India itself who do not care for self-discipline. So in that sense you can say there is not the same degree of self-discipline as there was before. But when we are speaking of real spirituality, there is no difference between ancient spirituality and modern spirituality; spirituality in its pristine beauty will always remain the same whether it is found in the ancient world or in the modern world.