Kireet Joshi
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Philosophy and Yoga of Sri Aurobindo and Other Essays

SRI AUROBINDO'S
PHILOSOPHY OF INDIAN NATIONALISM

I


A most luminous and revelatory exposition of philosophy of nationalism and of Indian nationalism is to be found in the writings of Sri Aurobindo. In fact, Sri Aurobindo's own life is a flaming example of Indian nationalism, not only in its uniqueness but also in its universality. If we study the history of Indian nationalism, we shall find that he stands out as the most heroic nationalist who formulated in the most inspiring terms the true aim of Indian nationalism, during the early period of nationalist struggle and accomplished the task of fixing it in the national consciousness within a short period of two years (1906-8) through blazing pages of the Bande Mataram. This miracle can be regarded as an unparalleled achievement in the entire world history of nationalism.

The greatest thing done in those years was the creation of a new spirit in the country, a new electric current that awakened the people to the true meaning of nationalism and filled them with enthusiasm that created waves after waves all over the country. Repression and depression could not silence the stir of this enthusiasm. After each wave of repression and depression, it renewed the thread of the life of movement for liberation and kept it recognisably one throughout nearly fifty years of its struggle. The cry of Bande Mataram rang on all sides, and people felt it glorious to be alive and dare and act together and hope. The old apathy and timidity was broken and a force was created which nothing could destroy, and it carried India to the beginning of a complete victory.