Savitri Era of those who adore, Om Sri Aurobindo and The Mother.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Like Sri Aurobindo, determine an independent line on every major international question

Mental slaves The Statesman - Kolkata, India Thursday 23 April 2009

Although Indian intellectuals take pride in fierce independence, some have from time to time allowed themselves to be mentally enslaved by foreign hegemons. “Macaulay’s children”, like Janakinath Bose and Satyendranath Tagore, emerged from British-educated institutions in the late 19th century to buttress Western colonial rule. Without such articulate but pliant native collaborators, says historian Niall Ferguson, “British rule in India simply would not have worked.” Thankfully, India’s fertile soil also produced their foils. Seers like Aurobindo Ghosh, who wrote the stirring New Lamps for Old in 1893, named British imperialism for what it was ~ oppressive alien rule. Even as the intellectual space was being smothered by the colonial educational apparatus and its assembly line of privileged “natives”, the counter-narrative of nationalism could not be eradicated. [...]

The challenge before India’s intellectuals is to rise above the partisanship of pseudo-progressives and to determine an independent line on every major international question, be it Tibet, Sri Lanka or Myanmar. Should they fail to do so, India would be left burnishing “old lamps” of untruth and groping in the dark for a distinct place in world affairs. (The writer is a researcher on international affairs at the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs in Syracuse, New York) Other Perspective Coming home Robe of secularism falls off

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