|Prabhupada Letters :: 1947-64
a.c. bhaktivedanta swami
1949: July 5 Calcutta
The Board of Trustees
Mahatma Gandhi Memorial National Fund,
With reference to the invitation issued by your Board, for suggestions for the administration of the Fund, I beg to inform that Gandhiji's memorial can fittingly be perpetuated by a continued effort to keep in motion his spiritual movements. I beg to suggest most humbly to your board that Gandhiji, minus his spiritual activities, is an ordinary politician. But actually he was a saint amongst the statesmen and his basic principle was to overhaul the very foundation of present civilization by the novel philosophy of satyagraha and nonviolence.
The Congress institution is already in the waning for neglecting Gandhiji's spiritual movement which was the main pillar of his universal popularity. By claiming the Indian state as secular we should not sacrifice Gandhiji's spiritual movement which is different from communal religiosity. This fact is corroborated by such personalities as Sri Aurovindo and Dr. Radhakrishnan. You may do everything for commemorating his memory living but if you do not accelerate his spiritual movement, his memory will be soon as dead as has been the lot of other politicians.
Mahatma Gandhi, although he was always busy with his political activities, never missed to attend to his daily prayer meetings in the evening. This rule he observed punctually even a few seconds before his assassination. To give a fitting memorial to Mahatma Gandhi we must follow and propagate this particular line of spiritual activities and must daily read a chapter from Bhagavad-gita in congregation. Bhagavad-gita is the world recognized philosophy of Indian culture and the favorite scripture of Mahatma Gandhi.
He was a great follower of this great philosophy like other great saints and he was therefore a great devotee of Rama and Krishna and for this only he was raised to such exalted position of a saint amongst the statesmen during his very life time. The Gandhi Memorial National Fund should be utilized for training up the people in general in this line of daily prayer in different places of Gandhi memorial buildings and other similar important places.
If systematic and principled direction is given to this daily prayer meetings following the footprints of Mahatmaji, then we can help all concerned in subduing their evil propensities which are the causes of disruption in the human society at large. When spiritual instincts, which are inherent qualities in every living being, are kindled by such daily prayer meetings, it is then only the people in general develop the qualities of the gods and the Trust Board of Mahatma Gandhi Fund should not miss this lesson of Mahatmaji's practical life. Such qualities being developed people in general will give up the habit of imitating others but they will live and act freely boldly and rightly like Mahatma Gandhi and that will bring real freedom of life individually or collectively.
Mahatmaji started another spiritual movement known as the temple entry movement and he wanted to give this facility to everyone irrespective caste distinction. The temple worship is another kind of spiritual cultural movement for the benefit of the ordinary class of people. He himself installed the deity of Sri Radha Krishna at Noakhali when he was there and that is also very significant. The theistic temples all over India are actually the different centres as are the churches and mosques all over the world.
These sacred centres were meant for diffusing spiritual education and by this process of spiritual culture the disturbed mind could be trained up in concentration for higher duties which every human being must do. By such education in practice can help man in realizing the existence of God without whose sanction, according to Mahatma Gandhi, "not a blade of grass moves."
A part of this movement is the harijana movement. The harijana means the God's man or the godly man as distinguished from the satanic devils. How a man of satanic principles can be turned in to a God's man is enunciated in the Bhagavad-gita. The way of karma-yoga i.e. doing everything for God's sake should be the principles of life.
The activities of the general public may not be stopped but may diverted in the manner stated in the Bhagavad-gita. By doing so any one in the world can be turned into a God's man. Thus the harijana movement started by Mahatma Gandhi should not be taken absolutely for the benefit of the bhangis and ___ so to say but it should be utilized for all who have the mentality of the bhangis etc.
By all the above process Mahatma Gandhi wanted to establish a greater human society. His idea of a casteless society could only be given a shape under the guidance of the principles of Bhagavad-gita. There are men of different mentalities according to quality and work. There are different modes of nature. These natural modes work everywhere in the world and different propensities develop by the psychological modes of nature.
The caste system is nothing but a classification of men according to such modes of nature. It is not therefore bound up within the walls of India but this is current all over the world may be under different names. This scientific and natural division of men should be accepted and people should be given chance to become harijana with equal facilities for all. The Bhagavad-gita gives a clear idea of doing this work and the Gandhi Memorial Fund should be utilized mainly for this purpose.
Myself with a batch of sincere workers are ready to take up this work, and I shall be glad to have your reaction to my above suggestions.
Abhay Charan De letters | 04:06 |