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Sri Aurobindo

Bande Mataram

Early Political Writings. 1890 — May 1908

Bande Mataram. April 24, 1908

Providence and Perorations

The Bengalee cannot bear to be told that the present movement is under the direct guidance of Providence. It regards the proposition as “positively dangerous”. It benignly admits that “if properly understood there is an element of vital truth in this proposition”, but when preached to “the vulgar” it is likely to work endless mischief. Hush! therefore, do not utter the name of Providence, “for there is no other philosophical doctrine which has done so much to breed and foster the unnatural spirit of difference as this particularly stupid dogma.” But tell people that foreign sugar and Liverpool salt contain the blood and bone of cows and pigs, and all the while go on consuming ham and bacon as great delicacies. Talk not of the presence of the divine in political activities, because this “stupid dogma” is calculated to create difference in our camp, but appeal to the Mahomedan's religious aversion to pork and the Hindu's hatred of beef, in the interest of national unity! Keep Providence for rounding the periods of your magnificent perorations, but bring him not down to the realities of your social or political struggles. He is an exceedingly inconvenient guest at the table or the counter.


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