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Sri Aurobindo

Bande Mataram

Early Political Writings. 1890 — May 1908

Bande Mataram. April 14, 1908

Om Shantih

The impending promotion of John Morley, the philosopher, to the House of Lords is one of the crimes of present day politics. The Radical philosopher, the biographer of Voltaire and Rousseau, the admired bookman of heterodoxy, is to end his days in that privileged preserve of all that is antiquated, anomalous, conservative and unprogressive, that standing negation of democratic principles, that survival of old-world privilege, the House of Lords. Honest John is to end his days as Lord John. It is a fitting reward for the work he has done as Secretary of State for India, the apostasy, the turning of his back on every principle for which he had stood in his books and speeches, the unctuous upholding of tyranny, the final consummation of the self-righteous Pharisee of liberty, the unrepentant oppressor of a rising nationality and a great resurgent civilisation. The culmination suits the beginning as a gargoyle suits a Gothic building; for the life of John Morley is a mass of contradictions, the profession of liberalism running hand in hand with the practice of a bastard Imperialism which did the work of Satan while it mouthed liberal Scripture to justify its sins. Mr. John Morley, the principal spurrer-on of Gladstone when Egypt was enslaved, the Chief Secretary whom the Irish feared and distrusted, the Secretary of State who has begun in India what no Tory statesman could have lightly undertaken, the attempt to stifle Indian aspirations by sheer force and put back the clock of progress from the nineteenth century into the middle ages, could not find a fitter heaven in which to spend his old age than the House of Lords. If anything could add to the just felicity of his translation, it is that there will be no Cottons and Rutherfords to vex his honest soul with irreverent questions. Om Shantih, Shantih, Shantih.

 

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.