By Maulana Sayyid Abul A’ala Maududi

{{CONTENTS }} Nations Rise and Fall – Why? Praise and Thanks giving to the Lord The Divine Law of the Rise and Fall of Nations The First and the Most Important Clause of the Divine Law Those Who Work Tremendous Havoc are Swept out of Effective Existence The Owner of a Garden and Gardener Difference in the Outlook of the Master and the Servant The difference Between the Divine and Human Outlook The Evidence of History Muslim Rule Over India Dismissal of the Muslim form Rule Expulsion of the British Freedom—A Test for the People of India Our Moral Condition The Consequences of Moral Decay Take Stock of Your Deeds Think of Reforming Yourself How Can You Rectify Matters? First Step Organization of the Righteous Elements Discrimination Between the Making and the Unmaking Second Step—A Clear Concept of Good and Evil Elements Causing Deterioration o Lack of God-Consciousness o Indifference to the Divine Guidance. o Selfishness o In active ness or Licentiousness Source: 2 Elements of Reform o Fear of God o Obedience to the Divine Guidance o The Organization of Human Society o Righteous Actions - - - - - |[NATIONS RISE AND FALL-WHY?]| (The following speech was delivered at a public meeting in Dar-ul- Islam near Pathankot (East Punjab) on the 10th of May, 1947. The audience consisted of several Hindus and Sikhs, besides Muslims. The speech should be studied in the perspective of turbulent times prevailing when the entire East Punjab had turned into a raging volcano about to explode shortly with all its fury. Only three months after this address was delivered the conflagration of violence and bloodshed the disastrous effects of which now form a tragic episode of history had swept over the entire land.) {{Praise and Thanksgiving to the Lord }} Praise and thanks giving to the Lord who created us, blessed us with reason and the power of understanding; endowed us with the discretion to sift right from wrong; and sent the best of His devoted servants to instruct and guide us. Peace and blessings be on those pious servants of God who instilled humanity into the progeny of Adam, taught them the principles of civilized living, made them aware of the real aim of human life and gave them such rules and regulations by following which they can achieve peace in this world and salvation in the Hereafter. {{The Divine Law of the Rise and Fall of Nations }} Ladies and Gentlemen, God who has created this world and has spread out this earth and has spread out this earth and has populated it with humanbeings is not the Being who acts rashly without design or purpose. He does not take a leap in the dark; He is not a whimsical Lord who reigns over the kingdom without any planning will. He has permanent laws, firm regulations and fixed rules by which He governs the universe. As the sun, the moon, the earth, the air, water, trees and animals are subject to His Law. As our birth and death, our childhood, youth and old age, our respiration, our digestion and circulation of blood and our sickness and health is controlled by the definite and indiscriminate laws of God, so in an exactly similar manner the ups and downs of our history, our rise and fall, our progress or decay, our personal prospects and destiny of our nation or country are controlled by the - - - - - same unavoidable and indiscriminate law of God. If it is not possible for a man to breathe through his eyes instead of his nose; if it is a impossible for the heart to perform the functions of the stomach, then it is equally impossible that a nation by adopting the path which warrants decline according to the Divine Law, can rise to glory. If the reaction of fire upon all people is indiscriminately the same; if it is not hot for one individual and cold for another, then evil deeds, which are evil deeds in the sight of Divine Law, also cannot cause the decline of one and the rise of another. The Divine rules which govern the good or ill-fortune of a man cannot be altered or evaded by human beings. The Divine rules are neither inimical to not in favour of a particular person. {{The First and Most Important Clause of the Divine Law }} The first and the most important clause of Divine Law is this: “Construction pleases God; destruction displeases Him”. As Master it is His desire that His world should be managed in right order; that the world should be made a fairer place; that the resources, the powers and the capabilities endowed by Him should be utilized in the best possible way. He most certainly does not like—nor can He be expected to like— that His world should be destroyed, devastated or spoiled with disorder, foul-play or tyranny and oppression. In the eyes of God only those candidates for management of the affairs of the world are approved for selection who possess constructive abilities of an extraordinary degree and He entrusts to them the authority to manage the affairs of the world. {{Those Who Work Tremendous Havoc are Swept out of Effective Existence }} God keeps a constant watch over what constructive and reformative measures they take and what havoc they bring about in the world. Until the time their deeds of construction outweigh their deeds of destruction and until there is any one else available who is likely to perpetrate less destruction, God perpetuates the rules of these people despite all their misdeeds and sins. But when the balance of their achievements is heavily inclined towards destruction and less - - - - - towards construction, God removes them from authority and casts them away. In their place some other are installed to manage the affairs of the world subject to the same inflexible condition. {{The Owner of a Garden and the Gardener }} Such is the Law of Nature. Your reason will affirm that it should be so. If one of you owns a garden and he wants to give it under the charge of a gardener, what, tell me, will be his first and foremost demand from the gardener? The owner of the garden will require nothing from the gardener save that he should improve its condition and should not devastate it. The owner would certainly want the gardener to keep the garden in the best possible condition to keep the garden in the best possible condition, to develop it to the possible extent, to endeavour his best to increase its beauty and charm and to enhance its produce. The gardener who puts his heart and soul in his work and tends the garden with care and great skill; who arranges the passages; who tends the good trees and cleanses out all poisonous plants, brambles and dry brushes; who grows new species of fruit and flowers with his ingenuity and knowledge—such a gardener will immensely please his master. The master will promote him and well never think of sacking such an able, dutiful and hard-working gardener. On the other hand, if the master finds that the gardener is unskilled as well as work shirker, and willfully or unintentionally causes damage to his garden; and that the garden is filled with dirt; the passages are crumbling; in some parts the water is overflowing the channels while in other parts the flower beds are parched, grass, weeds and brambles are growing wildly; the flower plants and fruit trees are being callously cut down; fine trees are withering and thorny bushes are flourishing—think then, how can he regard this gardener with favour? What kind of recommendation, what type of supplication, what sort of an entreaty, the family consideration or other self appointed rights can induce the master to continue the gardener in charge of his garden? At best the master may relent to give the gardener a second chance with the admonition that he should mend his ways. But if the gardener pays no need to the admonition and continues the work of desolating the garden, what other alternative is there except that - - - - - the master should eject him under disgrace and employ a new gardener in his place? Now consider that you show such deep concern for the good management of a small garden. God, who has handed over such a vast expanse of land containing so many resources into the charge of men has invested them with such great authority over Hits world and its resources-how can He be indifferent to the question as to whether you are engaged in construction or destruction of the world? If you are engaged in construction there is absolutely no reason why He should divest you of charge. But if you construct nothing and persist in your course of destroying and desolating his magnificent garden, God will acknowledge none of your claims to hold the charge of His garden, however strong the foundations of these claims be in your own conceit. God will administer some warnings; He will grant you a few periods of grace to mend your ways; at last, He will inevitably eject you from the charge. {{Difference in the Outlook of the Master and the Servant }} In this case, the outlook of God is different from that of men in the same manner as the outlook of the proprietor of the garden differs from that of the gardener. Suppose two or four generations of a certain family have been tending a garden. A forebear of this family was employed in this garden on the basis of his knowledge and skill. His descendants also gave a good account of themselves. The master felt it needless to remove these good people and employ new hands. Since they were doing well, they had the pre-eminent right over others. In this way, this family was firmly rooted in the service of this garden. But the present generation of this family is unworthy, inept, inefficient and irresponsible. It possesses no skill in gardening. It is spoiling the whole place. And yet it claims that it has been the keeper of this garden since time of its forefathers. Its great grandfather has laid out this garden. Hence it has a hereditary claim over this garden. Hence it has a hereditary claim over this garden. It is by no means fair to evict it and appoint another keeper to look after this garden. This is the outlook of these incapable gardeners. But can the master concur with the viewpoint of his - - - - - unworthy employees? Will not the master say that from his point of view good unkeep of the garden is the foremost duty of a gardener? He will say, ‘I did not lay out this garden for the benefit of your forebear, rather I had employed him to look after it, your rights over this garden are conditional upon your skill and good service. If you tend the garden with skill, your rights shall be granted. What grudge can I bear towards my old gardeners that I should sack them despite their good work and try new hands needlessly? But on the other hand, if you ruin and lay waste the garden fro the upkeep of which you have been employed, I cannot grant any of your rights. There are other candidates standing by. I shall hand over the charge to them and you will serve under their orders. If you do not mend your ways even at these stage and prove yourselves goodfor- nothing even as subordinates and cause deterioration, you will be turned out and replaced by new servants. {{The Difference Between the Divine and Human Outlook }} The same difference of viewpoint, which we find, between the master and the gardeners exist between the Master and His creatures, the people of this world. In whichever part of the land various nations of the world inhabit, they claim that the region is their motherland. They argue they have lived there for several generations. They have a hereditary claim over that country. Hence the government of the country should be in their own hands. No alien has the right to govern them. But the real Master of the worldGod- does not concur with this viewpoint. He does not recognize these nationalistic claims. God does not concede the hereditary claims of nations that whatever happens they shall not be dislodged from the control of their territories. God watches only the performance of a nation in her own country. If that nation is engaged in reform and construction; if she expends her energies in the development and reconstruction of her country, if she is engrossed in uprooting the evils and cultivating virtues, then the Master of this universe says, “Yes, verily, you deserve to rule over this land. You have inhabited this country for long and you are a worthy people. Your right over this land is permanent”. But if opposite is the case; if destruction is going space and construction - - - - - is held in abeyance; if God’s earth is being filled with evil and virtue is banished from it; if God-given resources of the earth are being mercilessly wasted away instead of being put to some constructive use—in that case, God will first administer to them some mild shocks and follow them up with severe jolts in order that these people may take heed and mend their ways. When these people do not give up their refractory behaviour even after these warnings, they are dispossessed of their right to govern that land and another people, who are comparatively superior in virtue, are installed in power over them. The process, however, does not stop at this point. If, even after coming under the subjugation of a foreign people, the natives of a country, still do not display any capability and skill and their performance shows destructive rather than constructive tendencies, God then eliminates this nation and raises another people to take their place. In this case, the Divine viewpoint is always that which a master ought to adopt under these circumstances. For the administration of His land, He takes no account of the hereditary and birth rights of the various candidates and claimants. What He looks for in the candidates is who among them possesses the greatest ability for doing good and the lesser inclination towards causing devastation. At a given period of time, the candidates who are best qualified according to this standard are chosen and until such time as their constructive achievements outweigh their destructive deeds or until a better candidate who has a comparatively lesser capacity for confounding matters is not forthcoming, the management of the land remains in the hands of the incumbents. {{The Evidence of History }} History bears witness to other fact that God has always managed the affairs of His earth on the principle, which I have described above. Why go far? Let us survey the history of our own country. When the creative capabilities of the original inhabitants of this country were spent, God appointed the Aryans, who had the best creative talents among the contemporary peoples, to administer this country. After conquering this subcontinent, they founded a glorious civilization. They devised various sciences and arts, explored resources of the soil, dug out the treasures of the earth and used - - - - - them for constructive purposes. They created more than they demolished. As long as they were equipped with these creative potentialities, they remained at helm of affairs of the land despite many remained at helm of affairs of the land despite many vicissitudes in the history. Invaders marched upon them with full might but were repulsed because they were not better qualified to rule than the Aryans. The onslaughts of the invaders were in the nature of warnings administered at times when the Aryans showed signs of deterioration. But at last when they set upon the evil course and began to degenerate; when they started destroying more and creating little; when they were sunk in the depth of moral degradation the traces of which can still be witnessed in the ‘Bam- Margi Movement’; when they artificially split up mankind and created divisions in their society on the grounds of caste and colour, and arranged their society in the vertical form like a ladder in which he who sat on the upper rung of the ladder became a master and the man sitting on the rung just below him became his subservient; when they subjected millions of human beings to hideous persecution which is still extant in the shape of the cult of untouchability, when they closed the doors of knowledge upon common masses, when their pundits sat over the treasures of knowledge coiled like snakes; when their governing classes had no other care except to extort their harshly imposed dues and live merrily on the earnings of their subjects-it was at this juncture that Almighty God divested them of power over this land and Central Asian peoples were provided an opportunity to work here who had at the moment in history imbibed the superior values of live under the impress of the Movement of Islam. {{Muslim Rule Over India }} These People remained at the helm of affairs in this country for several centuries and many native born people who had embraced Islam also became partners in the rule. There is no blinking the fact that these people were guilty of much destruction, but their creative achievements always surpassed their chaotic deeds. India owes to them or to their begin influence developmental work spread over several centuries. They spread the light of knowledge, brought about reforms in ideas, culture and civilization. They turned the - - - - - country’s means and resources to the best advantage according to the standards of the age and established an efficient judicial system, which, although, far below the real standards set by Islam, was yet far superior to the past system and to the systems then prevailing in the neighbouring countries. However, in the end even the Muslim rulers began to degenerate like their predecessors. Their constructive talents deteriorated and they began to exhibit destructive tendencies. They too undermined the solidarity of their society by creating social gradations, practicing racial discrimination and fanning class distinction, which resulted in several moral, political and cultural evils. The Muslim rulers too turned from justice to oppression and inclined heavily towards the latter. They forgot the responsibilities of the State and took interest only in the gains, mostly unjust gains that the State could confer on them. They abandoned the works of development and acts of reform and began to dissipate the powers and means that God had bestowed on them. They expended their energies mostly in those activities, which led to decadence of life. They had grown so indolent and steeped in love of ease and pleasure that after the final debacle when the royal family was ignominiously expelled from Delhi’s Red Fort, the princes----those who laid claims to ruler ship only yesterday—were too weak to run for their lives, because they had long ago given up walking on the earth. The moral degradation of the Muslim masses had aggravated to such an extent that from the common man to the highest dignitary they had lost all sense of adherence to anything higher than loyalty to self-interest. In this state of moral bankruptcy nothing could prevent them from bartering away their religion, nation and country for mean personal ends. Muslims became mercenary soldiers in millions whose moral standard was just like pet dogs. They were ever ready to transfer their allegiance to any master who promised them a loaf of bread and were prepared to hunt down their compatriots at the bidding of their masters. Little did they realize the meanness of the situation that by acting as base mercenaries they were helping the foreign enemy to reduce their country to subjection. Even a man of the caliber of Ghalib (A renowned India Muslim poet during the empire of the Mughals) boasts: “Military service has been the hereditary profession of my forefathers for hundreds of generations”. It never occurred to the - - - - - great poet even for a single moment that the profession of a mercenary is a disgraceful one and is not something to be proud of. {{Dismissal of the Muslims from Rule }} When the Muslims reached such a state of moral turpitude, God resolved to oust them from power. The administration of India fell vacant for new candidates. At this time four contenders for power were in the field: the Marhatta, the Sikhs, the British and some Musalman nobles. If you take an objective view and look at the historical events of that period and subsequent developments without national bias, you will be convinced that none of the contenders for power commanded those constructive capabilities, which the British so eminently possessed. The British had weaknesses but the Marhatta, the Sikh and Muslim adversaries were worse in this respect. None of them could have been able to introduce the reforms that the British did. There was much that British destroyed, but the others would certainly have destroyed far more. Viewing generally, the British would appear to be possessing several shortcomings in various respects. But when viewed in comparison with their contemporary rivals, their virtues would outnumber their faults. It is for this reason that God once again set aside the unjustified manmade principle: “Only the native of a country are destined to rule over it whether they work for its betterment or cause deterioration” God once again reinforced the historical principle:” No, the land belongs exclusively to God. It is He alone who has the right to appoint or dismiss a ruler. God does not take account of any racial, national or hereditary claims of a people to rule. He decides in favour of those who would on the whole establish an equitable and just rule”. The Holy Qur’an says: “Say, O Allah, Master of the dominion! Thou givest dominion to whomsoever Thou willst and takest away the same from whomsoever Thou likest. Thou bestowst dignity on whomsoever Thou likest and cast into disgrace whomsoever Thou likest. Thou alone dispense all Goodness and Thou alone art Omnipotent” (3:26). In accordance with this Divine Law, God brought a nation from thousands of miles whose number in this country never surpassed - - - - - the figure of three or four lakhs. They utilized the men and resources of this country to subjugate the Hindus, Muslims and the Sikhs and took the reigns of government into their own hands. Hundreds of millions of natives lived as serfs of an insignificant number of Englishmen. A single Englishman usually ruled over a vast district single-handed without the aid of any of his compatriots sharing his burden. During this period the Indian people served as functionaries under the orders of foreign masters; they did what they were told; they did nor at on their own. We should admit and if we refuse to admit, we would stand guilty of denying the reality, that during the entire course of the British rule everything creative that happened in the life of India was accomplished by the British or was brought about under the impetus of the British. When we compare the present condition of India with those times when the British took over the government, we cannot deny that the roll of their constructive achievements is longer than their misdeeds. The natives had no capacity to achieve what the British accomplished. Hence we see that the decision that God has made in regard to the fate of India in mid-eighteenth century was correct. {{Expulsion of the British }} The British have now reached the limit of their creative achievements. They can no more do anything constructive. What good the British are capable of doing, the others can now do equally well. On the other hand, the balance of their misdeeds has become alarmingly heavy and as long as they remain at the helm of affairs, they will continue to misrule and cause havoc rather than do some good to India. The charge sheet against them is so long that it is difficult to go over it one sitting, nor, indeed, it is needed to give a description of it as it is known to all and sundry. The Divine Will now is that the British should be expelled from power in India. They have shown good sense in their resolve to leave India of their own accord. If they had not done so, they would be expelled in disgrace by violent means, for the inexorable law of God does not permit the continuance of British rule any longer. - - - - - {{Freedom - A Test for the People of India }} This moment through which we are passing is one of those turning points in history when the Real Sovereign of the earth brings the rule of one authority to an end and decides to transfer the administration of a country to a new authority. The transfer of power which is being arranged in this country should not mislead you into thinking that it is a final dispensation whereby the administration of the country is being handed over to the native inhabitants. Your perhaps consider it a plain matter that the foreigners who had ruled the country for long are now quitting and the administration would automatically be restituted to the natives. The matter is not as simple as that. God’s decisions are not made in this manner. God did not in the first place install these foreigners in power without purpose, nor is He now hosting them without reason. God did not dispossess the natives of their rule without cause, nor will He reinstate them in power without design. The people of India stand as candidates for power today. The Hindus, the Muslims the Sikhs—all demand power. Since these three groups are the older inhabitants of the land, so they are being given the first chance to rule over the country. But this is not a permanent dispensation; their appointment to rule is probationary. If they demonstrate their capacity for doing more good than evil, their rule will be made permanent. Otherwise if the people of India demolish more than they can build, they will soon witness their eviction from power and God will choose some other nation from far or near to take charge of the administration of this country. In such cases, there is no appeal against Divine dispensation. Having demonstrated their unworthiness to the whole world would they have cogent right as to make any appeal for the revocation of the Divine order? And if they cast all shame to the winds and persist in their wailing who will sympathies with their plight? {{Our Moral Condition }} Let us survey now the capacities, abilities, virtues and achievements of the people of India---the Hindus, Muslims and the Sikhs---which they can present before God in support of their petition that He should restore power to them. I trust that you will bear with me if at - - - - - this stage I read before you openly and unsparingly every item of the charge sheet, which has been indiscriminately served on the Hindus, Muslims and the Sikhs by the ‘Court of Morality’. I am not very happy in describing the vices of my nation or my compatriots; in fact, my heart bleeds with sorrow at the contemplation of their perverse morals. But whether it pleases them or not, I consider it imperative to speak the truth on their face. I foresee the terrible consequence of their vices, which they will not only witness but will have to endure in future. I fear that these vices will throw them into the byssi of disgrace. We, you----none of us will be spared from the horrible results of our immoral acts. I mention these evils with a deep sense of sorrow so that those who have ears may listen and devise measures of reform. You can judge the moral standards of the individual members of a society in the light of your own experience and observations. What percentage of men from among us hesitates to usurp the rights of others , abstains from gaining profit by unlawful means, or refrains from telling a ‘useful’ lie or committing some ‘profitable act’ of dishonesty on the ground that such deeds are morally wrong? What percentage of men is prompted by moral considerations in refraining from committing crimes or perpetrating an evil on such occasions where the long arm of the law cannot apprehend them or where they hope to escape from the clutches of the law? How many persons work for the welfare of others, serve others with sympathy and selflessness or treat others fairly and politely without having a personal axe to grind? What is the ratio of those traders among the business community who do not indulge in deceit, fraud, false representation or unlawful profiteering? How many of our industrialists pay due regard to the consumer and national interest simultaneous with the motive to earn maximum profits? How many of our landowners have the humanity to realize that by hoarding grain and making huge profits by selling it at highest rates, they are causing lakhs and even crores of people to suffer the distress of hunger? How many of our capitalists have amassed their hoards of money without oppression of the violation of the rights of others or without adopting unfair means? How many of our working people earn their wages and salaries by doing an honest day’s work? How many of our civil servants are not guilty of graft, embezzlement, tyranny, callousness, indifferent to duty, illegal gains and misuse of - - - - - authority? How many of our lawyers, doctors, hakims, journalists, publishers, authors and self styled ‘Servants of the Nation’ feel some sense of shame when they use unsavoury means to promote their self-interest and inflict mental, moral, financial and physical harm on the people of God. It would not be an exaggeration to say that hardly five per cent are severely infected with this disease. The epidemic has spared none among the Hindus, Muslims, Sikhs, Christians or the Harijans; all are equally in the grip of this disease without any discrimination. The moral standards of all these communities are alarmingly low and none of them can claim superiority over others in this respect. T{{The Consequences of Moral Decay }} When the moral decay had degenerated a very large number of individuals, it was natural that this disease which had corroded our morals should assume an epidemic form and manifest itself in the collective behaviour of our people. The first sign of this impending storm was the overcrowding of passengers on the railway trains due to war emergency. The selfishness, callousness and cruelty which people belonging to the same nationality and the same country exhibited towards one another was a clear symptom of our rapidly deteriorating morality. To the hardships of shortages and inflation were added hoarding and black marketing on a vast scale. During the artificially created dreadful Bengal famine, a class of our people ruthlessly subjected millions of their compatriots to starvation to death for the sake of their own capital gains. All these were primary symptoms of the malaise. The lava of wickedness, baseness, beastliness and cruelty which had been boiling for a long time suddenly burst out and its fires are now raging over the length and breadth of India in the form of communal riots. The new chapter of communal strife among the Hindus, Muslims and the Sikhs started by the Calcutta riots have given these three communities an opportunity to exercise their vilest instincts. The most unimaginable deeds of inhumanity are being openly and unashamedly perpetrated by citizen in and around their localities. In large places almost all inhabitants have turned into lawless ‘goondas’ and are indulging in such preserve crimes that were hitherto beyond the imagination of the fiercest goonda. Infants have been butchered while they were - - - - - suckling the breasts of their mothers. Men have been stripped naked and raped in the presence of crowds comprising of thousands of people. Daughters, wives and sisters have been assaulted before the eyes of the helpless fathers, husbands and brothers. House of worship and religious books have been desecrated in the most degrading fashion. The sick, the wounded and the old folks have been subjected to inhuman violence. The passengers have been hurled down from running trains. They have hacked the limbs of living persons and hunted down the an-armed and helpless human beings like animals. Neighbours have sacked the homes of neighbours. Friends have betrayed friends. The persons responsible for providing shelter have themselves abrogated their pledge for the protection of the people the forces responsible for maintaining law and order (Police, Army and the judicial Magistrates) have openly joined the communal riots. They have not only personally committed acts of violence, but have abetted, supported and guided the violent operations of their chosen factions. In brief, no form of cruelty and high handedness, callousness and base villainy has been left unspared during the last few months to which we as a whole have not fallen victims. And the full venom has not been exhausted yet. There are signs that all this is shortly going to recur on a larger and a more dreadful scale. Do you imagine that all the happenings are the outcome of some casual disturbance? It this is what you think, you are suffering from an illusion. I have just pointed out to you that ninety-five per cent of the inhabitants of this country are victims of a moral disease. How can the collective behaviour of a nation remain sane and healthy when such a large number of her individual members are morally degenerated? It is for this reason that the three communities, the Hindus, Muslims and the Sikhs, no longer attach any value and importance to virtues like truth, justice and righteousness. A truthful, honest and upright person is reduced to an object of scorn. To dissuade someone from evil ways and exhort righteousness—these are today the most in tolerable crimes in the governing code of their society. They have turned their faces from equity and fairplay; they scorn all talk of justice and right conduct. Each community idolizes only those people who advocate her unjustified demands and claims, fan the flames of prejudice against others and ready to fight for the fulfillment of their fair or foul ends. It is on these grounds that these nations have carefully - - - - - selected the worst individuals from among them to act as their representatives. They handpicked the most notorious criminals of their community and installed them as their leaders in action. Individuals who possessed the basest morals, had no sense of honour, and knew no principles rose as leaders of these communities and won the greatest popularity in the field of journalism. They drove their degenerate communities on the road to corruption harder and faster. Instead of converging the contradictory national demands on an equitable point, they escalated them to the point of conflict. To the conflict of economic and political interests they added the fire of fury, hatred and vendetta and continued to whip up these evil passions. For years, they incited their people with incendiary speeches and writings to fight like dogs and wolves. They filled the hearts of all and sundry with the fire of evil passions and blind vendetta. The storm that is raging before you today is not temporary or seasonal. It is a natural result of the several disruptive causes which have been at work within our society for a long period of time. This resultant catastrophe is not temporary or short lived, but the situation will continue to aggravate day by day as long as the disruptive influences are at a work in our society. This is a poisonous crop, which has now ripened after years of sowing, and watering and no one can say for how long you and your coming generations will continue to reap it. {{Take Stock of Your Deeds }} Gentlemen, it is high time that you consider dispassionately that at this juncture in our country’s history when plans for a change-over of administration are on the an evil, what proof of our own worth and ability are we presenting before the Sovereign Lord of this earth? The time calls upon us to demonstrate by our actions that if it be the Will of the Lord to bestow the administration of this land upon us, we shall make it an abode of happiness. We shall establish justice and equity in this land. We shall promote sympathy, a spirit of cooperation and a feeling of kindness for each other in this country. We shall harness the resources of this country for our own welfare and the betterment of humanity at large. We shall uphold righteousness and suppress all evils. On the contrary, however, we - - - - - are representing ourselves as the greatest devastators, the matchless mischievous and cruel fiends that if He hands over the authority in this land to us, we shall lay waste whole villages and towns, burn to ashes entire localities and hamlets; we would put lesser premium on human life than even over the lives of flies and mosquitoes; we would degrade women and violate their modesty; we would slaughter children; we would give no quarter to the old, sick and the wounded; we would desecrate the houses of worship and religious books with out ignoble passions; and the earth which you populated with living beings will be littered with human dead bodies and the shells of gutted buildings. Does your conscience really admit the possibility that having presented this black picture of your deeds, vices, and crimes, God will yet consider you worthy of trust and prefer to transfer the administration into your hands? Having witnessed these crimes will He yet say “Well done! Ye who are the progeny of My former gardeners! You have the preeminent right to look after my garden. Indeed I had laid out this garden for the only purpose that it be uprooted, ruined, desolated and be filled with all the stinking rubbish. Take it under your charge and destroy it as much as you like”. {{Think of Reforming Yourself }} I am not saying all this to you so that you may lose all hope for the future. I myself am not disappointed nor do I want others to feel that way. The idea that I wish to convey to you is that the people of India by their own folly and ignorance are bent upon losing a golden opportunity which only once in centuries God Almighty grants to people at the time of historic change-over in a country’s administration. It was high time that they demonstrated their best qualities and the most excellent abilities in order to qualify themselves in the eyes of God for the guardianship of His land. Today, however, the people of India are zealously completing with each other in acts of oppression, ferocity and cruelty so as to win the greatest disapprobation of God. Such manners do not qualify a nation for achieving freedom, progress and glory. On the other hand, these acts entail the danger that Divine Judgment may again condemn us to slavery and degradation. Hence all sensible people - - - - - who possess awareness of the situation should endeavour to rectify matters. {{HOW CAN YOU RECTIFY MATTERS? }} At this stage a question will arise in your minds as to how can we rectify matters? I am prepared to answer this question. In this darkness there is only one glimmer of hope for us. Degradation has not yet enveloped our entire population. There are at least five per cent of people who are immune from the evil infection that is raging today. We can capitalize on these people to launch a movement for reform. {{First Step-Organization of the Righteous Elements }} The first step in the movement for reformation is to identify, select and organize the righteous elements in our society. As ill-luck would have it the evil forces in our society are well-organized and operated under a systematic planning, but the forces of good are in a disorganized state. Good people are certainly there, but they are in disarray. There is no mutual cooperation and coordination among them. They have no programme and do not act in concert. Due to these reasons they have been reduced to an ineffective crowd. Every now and then a God-fearing man raises his voice against the prevailing evils, but when no support is forthcoming from any quarter his single voice too is stilled in disappointment. Sometimes a man openly proclaims what is right and just, but the organized forces of evil throttle his voice and the righteous do no more than praise his boldness in private. Sometimes a man cannot hold himself when he witnesses the acts of inhumanity and makes a protest, but the ferocious elements rush upon him and suppress him and the fate of this man serves as a deterrent to those who still feel the pricks of conscience within their soul. This state of affairs must end. If we do not want that our country should suffer the wrath of God and a number of the righteous and the evil among us should fall victim to the torments that the wrath of God will bring upon us, we should earnestly endeavour to collect and organize the righteous elements who have escaped the prevailing epidemic of moral turpitude. This organized force should check the rising tide of this mischief, which is driving us towards a catastrophic end. - - - - - There is no cause for concern even though this righteous element is hopelessly outnumbered. If this creative minority unites itself and the members of this creative minority unites itself and the members of little group base their individual and collective conduct on the principles of truth, fairplay, righteousness, sincerity, honesty and firmness of purpose and if they adopt a wellconsidered programme for the most satisfactory solution of life’s problems and for administering the affairs of the world in an equitable manner, there is not a shadow of doubt that the organized forces of evil despite their numerical strength and fatal weapons will be annihilated by this small but organized body of the God-fearing people. Human nature abhors wickedness. Human nature is liable to be misled; it is liable to be deformed, yet the inborn virtue of goodness instilled into it by the Lord can never be eliminated. The number of those who are preoccupied with evil, and become its standard bearers is really small. Similarly there are very few people who are fully devoted to virtue and are actively engaged in establishing the noble causes. In humanity possesses mixed tendency of virtue and wickedness. They are not particularly inclined towards evil, nor are they excessively drawn towards virtue. It is the standard-bearers of good or evil who influence and guide the sentiments of the majority of common people and their inclinations wholly depend on whether the viewpoint of the righteous is transmitted to them first or whether the forces of evil steal a march over the forces of good and succeed in drawing them to their side. If the standard-bearers of good do not enter the field at all and make no efforts to guide the people on the path of virtue, the void thus created will be filled by spearheads of the evil forces and they will draw the people to the path of evil. But if the standard-bearers of righteousness enter the field of action and perform the task of reforming the society in right earnest, the leaders of evil forces cannot maintain their hold on the masses for much longer. These two forces will confront each other in the sphere of morality, and in this combat evil can never dominate virtue. Falsehood may expend its full force against truth, dishonesty may use all its stratagems against honesty; corruption may content with piety with all the power it can muster, yet the final round will always be won by truth, piety and honesty. The world is not so insensible that having tasted the sweetness of righteousness and - - - - - endured the bitterness of evil it should yet adjudge bitter evil better than sweet piety. {{DISCRIMINATION BETWEEN THE MAKING AND THE UNMAKING }} {{Second Step—A Clear Concept of Good and Evil }} In order to accomplish the task of reforming a society, a clear concept of good and evil is next in importance to the organization of the righteous people. We should have a clear conception of what is evil and what is good, so that we may endeavour to eliminate evil and enforce piety with all the power at our command. I do not propose to discuss the matter in detail on this occasion. However, I would like to present before you a brief sketch of these two factors. {{Elements Causing Deterioration }} The elements, which introduce deterioration in human life, can be grouped into four categories: {{1. Lack of God-Consciousness }} When the fear of God is banished from human affairs, it results in the ‘prevalence of injustice, tyranny, corruption and all forms of moral degradation in the world. {{2. Indifference to the Divine Guidance }} An indifferent attitude towards the Guidance vouchsafed by God has done away with all permanent canons of moral conduct, which may be observed in human affairs. For this reason, the entire behaviour at the individual, group or national level is controlled by self- interest, self-gratification and love of pleasure. As a result people have become unscrupulous and are bent upon achieving their selfish goals by fair means or foul. They do not hesitate to achieve their ends by the vilest and all the possible nefarious means. {{3. Selfishness }} Selfishness not only impels people to violate the right of others, but also manifests itself in the form of racialism nationalism and class - - - - - distinctions on a large scale, which result in conflicts of various types. {{4. Inactiveness or Licentiousness }} Because of inactiveness or licentiousness man either does not make use of God-given capabilities or puts them to wrong use; either he does not harness God-given resources or employs them for unlawful purposes. In the first case the Divine Law does not permit inactive and incompetent people to hold the reigns of authority in His land for long. God replaces such inadequate people with those who possess constructive talents. In the second case, when the destructive deeds of a wicked people outnumber their constructive actions, God throws them out of power; and often these people are annihilated by the explosions caused by their own destructive deeds. {{Elements of Reform }} In contrast to the above, the elements which create beauty and order in human society can also be divided under four heads: {{1. Fear of God }} Fear of God is the only reliable guarantee of preventing one from committing evil deeds and setting him on the path of righteousness. Fear of God is the only seed which blossoms into truth, justice, trustworthiness, righteousness, restraint and all other virtues which serve as the bed-rock of a peaceful and progressive human culture and civilization. Although these virtues can be acquired through these sources does not exceed beyond a certain limit and the foundations of these virtues are never secure but are liable to be rocked. The fear of God is the only sure means of deterring man from evil ways and directing his steps firmly on the path of virtue and salutary effects of the fear of God on human affairs are not only seen on a limited scale but can be witnessed in all spheres of human life on a vast scale. - - - - - {{2. Obedience to the Divine Guidance }} Obedience to the Commands of God is the only means of bringing individuals, social, national and international behaviour under the control of a permanent system of moral principles. As long as man is free to choose moral principles. As long as man is free to choose morals that suit his purposes, he cannot practice what he preaches. In books he writes one set of glorious rules in letters of gold, but is guided in practice by a separate set of rules, which promote his self- interest. He bases his own claims upon some fixed moral rules, but in considering the claims of others he alters the same rules from moment to moment as opportunity, expediency, passion or need demands. It is ‘self-interest’, not ‘right’ around which the moral life of man revolves. He does not believe that he should adapt his practices to the rules of justice and fair play; instead it his desire that all moral rules should bend to serve his own interest. This then is the root cause of the wrong behaviour of nations and the breaking out of deterioration in the world. In contrast to this man can only achieve the ideals of peace, prosperity, well-being and glory by adopting a moral code the pivotal point of which is not self- interest but fairness and justice. This moral code should be the supreme arbitrator in all human affairs, individual or national, commercial or political or in matters of war and peace. It is evident that the source of such a moral code are the Commandments of God and man can abide by them only if he surrenders his own right to alter or introduce amendments in the Divine Law and succumbs to the Will of God in all matters. {{3. The Organization of Human Society }} There should be a system built up on the principles of equal status and equal rights of all human beings instead of on the principle of safeguarding the vested interests of individuals, nations, races or classes. No unreasonable distinctions, no stratification of high or low, no casteism and no artificial prejudices should be allowed to exist in human society. No one should enjoy preferential rights and no artificial handicaps or barriers should mar the opportunity to develop his full potential. This society should be so broad-based so as to encompass the entire human race on a footing of equality. - - - - - {{4. Righteous Actions }} Righteous action means to make full and proper use of the God- given potentialities and resources. Gentlemen! These four elements constitute what is called “the making” and “reformation”. It would be a boon to us if we form among us an organization of righteous persons who would constantly endeavour to eradicate the causes of destruction and devise means of construction. If their endeavours succeed in drawing the people of this country to the path of righteousness, God Almighty is not so unjust as to dispossess this nation of the right to rule her own country and thrust foreign rulers on her. But, God forbid, if the struggle of the righteous people comes to naught, we cannot predict what fate is in store for us, for you, or for the citizens of this land.