For True National Glory – 2
September 30, 2009 3 Comments
In the Chapter titled “For True National Glory” from Sri M. S. Golwalkar’s book, Bunch of Thoughts, he outlines the qualities required in us individuals in order to strengthen the organized life of people.
The previous post dealt with one such quality. Here is another one:-
Character is All
Physical strength is necessary, but character is more important. Strength without character will only make a brute of man. Purity of character from the individual as well as the national standpoint, is the real life-breath of national glory and greatness.
There is the story of Prahlad which depicts the importance of character. As a result of his meritorious deeds, he drove away Indra and became the king of gods. Indra approached Brihaspati-the guru of gods – and said, “Sir, you know my pitiable plight. What shall I do to regain my throne?” Brihaspati said, “Dress yourself as an ordinary mendicant, go to the durbar of Prahlad at the hour of Ichhadan, i.e., when he gives away whatever the beggars ask, and ask for his sheela(character).” Indra obeyed. He went to Prahlad as a beggar and asked him his sheela.
Prahlad said, “Why are you satisfied with only my sheela?” “That is sufficient for me,” replied the mendicant. “You can have it”, said Prahlad. Immediately after he said this, an effulgent being came out of his body and entered the body of the mendicant. “Who are you? Why are you entering the body of the mendicant leaving my body?” asked Prahlad. “I am your sheela. As you have given me away to him. I have to enter his body now”, the effulgent spirit replied. In a fraction of second another brilliant form came out. Once again Prahlad asked “Who are you? Why are you leaving my body?” I am your shaurya (prowess). I am only a servant of sheela. So long as you had sheela I served you. Now that sheela has gone away, I am also following sheela.” So saying, it also entered the body of the mendicant. Like this a few more effulgent forms left Prahlad’s body. Lastly, a brilliant shining form of woman came out of him. She said, “Well, I am your Rajyashree (Goddess of Royal Glory). I too am a servant of sheela. As you have given up your sheela, I am going.” As a result, Prahlad lost all his power and glory and Indra regained his throne.
The moral of the story, in a nutshell, is that if endowed with character we can achieve anything, and without character we stand to lose everything. This is as much true of nations as of individuals. Therefore, the two aspects of character, individual and national, are like the twin lungs of national glory.