Call it fatalism or what you will, we, in India, have
always thought and still think that the destines of
all things here on earth are controlled by superior
forces of whose nature man has yet known but little.
The affairs of cawing crows and of “civilized nations”,
of cats and of “supermen,” are all determined by Divine
laws – the laws of those whom we call the immortals.
The diplomats and statesmen of the world think that
the diplomats and statesmen are wrong. All beings are
instruments of the Divine Will and act for ends which
they can never fully comprehend.
We know this and we are therefore possessed
with a sense of humility and diffidence when we want
to understand the real objects for which the Gods have
sent this grim and terrible tragedy into the fair and
prosperous land of Europe. Our hearts are very deeply
touched when we think of the immense amount of suffering
and anguish which this war has brought to European humanity.
We have a special love for Europe, in spite of her blunders
and faults; for she has done some very good things for
we love Europe
Within her own realms she has fought
noble battles against superstition and injustice3. She
has used her best talents for unraveling the mysteries
of God’s physical world. She has been bold in her inquiries,
courageous in her convictions and high-souled in her
aspirations. Man kind is fundamentally one. Of course
there are some silly theorists and sillier rhymesters
in Europe, as here, who have been pleased to divide
mankind into hearts which “shall never meet, “ but the
true seers have everywhere proclaimed the unity of the
human race. And whatever mental or moral victories Europe
may have won for herself, she has won for the whole
of humanity also. We therefore love Europe and we earnestly
hope that she will soon be permitted by the Gods to
return to the normal ways of life. Her pain moves our
hearts. May she soon have peace!
we are friendly to the cause of the allies?
Even the soul which recognizes and is ever willing to
submit to the inscrutable dispensations of the higher
powers may have its own convictions, its own sympathies,
its own choice. And from whatever philosophical height
one may choose to survey the momentous struggle now
going on in Europe, one cannot help taking sides unless
one ceases to be human. The thing is so grand, so terrible,
so tragic, so human. It is a pity that men should have
to die like this. But the laws are inexorable. Certain
ideas have god to triumph, certain principles have got
to be realised among men. And man generally learns new
lessons at a frightful cost. In Europe, to-day, the
allies maintain that they fight for international equity,
for the rights of nations and individuals; while the
Germans say that they are fighting, among other things,
for the maintenance and advancement of their culture.
They even speak of Germanizing the
world. I am willing to admin that on the side of the
allies also there are certain people whose love for
liberty and equity is of very recent origin – the principal
advisers of the Tsar, for instance. But still there
remains the fact that their war-cry is : “each nation
for itself,” while the other side lays more stress on
imposing German culture on the rest of us. There is
no use in thinking about past incidents. In the past
everyone has been wrong, in Asia as well as in Europe.
We must forgive the past. There remains no doubt, however,
that in the present war the right is with the Allies.
And we in India – all of us who count for anything –
being passionate lovers of the cause of freedom, we
pray that the side which will guarantee the freedom
of nations, which will demolish once for all the stupid
doctrine that “Might is Right”, which will establish
a permanent and universal system of international equity
and mutual respect – that side should win. This is the
reason why India is so willing to sacrifice her men
and resources towards aiding England and her allies.
England, we are pleased to find, is full of genuine
gratitude for all that we are doing for her at present,
though some of her agents here persist in clinging to
the old follies and superstition. But these men do not
count for much ; England will never forget India’s generosity
and magnanimity. She will not disappoint the civilized
world by denying her present ideals when the war shall