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Peace or War, life is a challenge at once to the individual and to the nation. Peace-time problems and the exigencies of a war-time life are both to be met with determination and understanding. And no nation has historically grown into strength and beauty without marching up through the precipitous climbs of peace, and down the slippery slopes of warring valleys. War is not unnatural, it is only unusual.

In the modem times, in all the principal nations of the world, the panacea prescribed for all the sorrows of social and national life is some economic programme for progress. Indeed, ours is an age of programme-minded leadership, but there is a great fact that seems to escape the attention of all promoters of these programmes.

No doubt, in peace-time, the Government of a country is the assurance behind all programmes of that country. In war-time the programme is the strength behind the Government. And at all times, the people of the country alone can determine the dynamic vitality behind all programmes of concerted efforts, be it programmes to meet the unnatural situations of a war-time challenge, or be it programmes to meet the unusual problems of a peace-time growth.

During periods of emergency the social and national programmes should be dynamic, and a purposeful Government should be ever alert and watchful to keep the mass enthusiasm ever all-time high. But all these become totally ineffectual if the people have not the essential spirit of freedom, have not readiness to sacrifice everything they possess - wealth, institutions, and even national traditions- for the sake of meeting successfully the challenge that is threatening the very existence of the nation.

To see the present in the richness of the past alone is the secret of all inspiration to people. In this newly revealed inspiration people will discover in themselves a sense of self-respect and will readily come to appreciate the wealth of their past. They need no more to be told that they must make all sacrifices to maintain their honour. which stands indeed rooted in their own reverence for their past. To maintain their sacred past they will then readily bring forth by themselves a splendid spirit of self-sacrifice - a spirit with which all national achievements are assured and without which no achievement is ever possible for any nation.

The awareness of an adorable past is that which ever supplies man with his inspiration to strive now in the present. To any student of history it is not difficult to understand that the future glories of a country are built with the present efforts.

To be continued

About the author

Swami Chinmayananda

Swami Chinmayananda the great master's lectures were an outpour of wisdom. He introduced the Geetha Gnana Yagna. He wrote a lot of books on spirituality, commentaries to Vedantic texts, children books etc. He then started spreading His teachings globally.....

Story first published: Friday, December 4, 2009, 15:28 [IST]
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