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VIVEKANANDA ON : PATRIOTISM

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They talk of patriotism. I believe in patriotism, and I also have
my own ideal of patriotism. Three things are necessary for great achieve-
ments : First, feel from the heart. What is in the intellect or reason?
It goes a few steps nad there it stops. But through the heart comes insp-
iration.Love opens the most impossible gates; love is the gates to all
the secrets in the universe. Feel, therefore, my would-be reformers, my
would-be patriots! Do you feel? Do you feel that the millions and millions
of the descendants of gods and of sages have become next-door neighbous to
brutes? Do you feel that millions have been starving today, and millions
have been starving for ages? Do you feel that ignorance has come over the
land as a dark crowd? Does it make you restless? Does it make you sleepless?
Has it gone over your blood, coursing through your veins, becoming consona-
nant with your heart-beats? Has it made you almost mad? Are you seized with
the one idea of misery and ruin, and have you forgotten all about your name,
your fame, your wives, your children, your property, even your own bodies?
Have you done tht? This is the first step to become a patriot, the very
first step.......

You may feel, then; but instead of spending your energies on frothy
talk, have you found any way out, any practical solution, some help instead
of condemnation, some sweet words to soothe their miseries, to bring them
out of this living death?

Yet that is not all. Have you got the will to surmount mountain-
high obstructions? If the whole world stands against you sword in hand,
would you still dare to do what you think is right? If your wives and
children are against you, if all your money goes, your name dies, your
wealth vanishes, would you still stick to it? Would you still pursue it
and go on steadily towards your own goal? As the great King Bhartehari
says (Niti-sataka, verse 74) :

Nindantu nitinpunah yadi va stuvantu
Laksmih samavisatu gacchatu va yathestam;
Adyaiva va maranamastu yugantare va
Nyayyat pathat pravicalanti padam na dhirah-

"Let the sages blame or let them praise; let the goddess of fortune
come or let her go wherever she likes; let death come today, or let it come
after millions of years; he indeed is the steady man who does not move one
inch from the way of truth."

Have you got that steadfastness? If you have these three things,
each one of you will make miracles.

Vol III-pp. 225-226
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Srikant Mookerjee
Math/Stats
University of Pittsburgh
Pittsbugh, PA 15146
USA

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