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Sri Aurobindo

Bande Mataram

Early Political Writings. 1890 — May 1908

Bande Mataram. October 5, 1907

“Armenian Horrors”

It has been pointed out to us that the tone of our reporter's account of Thursday's doings was hardly in consonance with the creed and the spirit of which the Bande Mataram is the exponent. The facts reported are not materially different from those attested by other Indian dailies, but there is too much hysterical and lachrymose exaggeration of phrase in describing them. As it is no part of our policy to conceal our own lapses, we will at once admit that there is truth in the complaint. To talk of Armenian horrors in such a connection is the rhetoric of an excited Moderate disappointed in his reliance on European humanity and “superior” civilisation1, not of a sturdy Nationalist organ which has always foreseen the possibility of this and worse things as the price we shall have to pay for liberty. We withdraw therefore this and all similar expressions. Calcutta has as yet suffered nothing like what East Bengal has suffered, to say nothing of Armenia and Bulgaria. We are as yet only at the beginning of our journey and have not gone down into the valley of death through which our way lies to the promised land. It will not do to whine or shriek over some shops looted and men robbed and beaten or even over a few corpses of our countrymen floating in the Ganges, if the report be true, this and far worse than this we shall have to meet with a calm brow and a brave heart. Not merely in goods and money but with the blood from our hearts we shall have to pay for the sins of our forefathers.


Later edition of this work: The Complete Works of Sri Aurobindo.- Set in 37 volumes.- Volumes 6-7.- Bande Mataram: Political Writings and Speeches. 18901908 .- Pondicherry: Sri Aurobindo Ashram, 2002.- 1182 p.

1 2002 ed. CWSA, vol.6-7: civilization