Sadhguru on Why Calibrating Nationalism is Need of the Hour

Even though mistakes were made, India has come a long way since it got Independence in 1947, says Spiritual leader Sadhguru Jaggi Vasudev just days ahead of August 15 as he speaks exclusively to CNN-News18.

He said the country has been “eaten up by a certain level of corruption” and lacks “a certain level of determination in leadership in certain periods of time” but it has, nevertheless, made good progress.

“From 1947 we have come a long way. We did make some mistakes. But it is necessary for the evolution of nation. It is different from building an institution… that too building a country as complex as ours is difficult. It is a collection of many cultures woven into one fabric. In spite of this we have come a long way,” he said.

“We could have still done better… many things are missing. One important thing is that we have been eaten up by a certain level of corruption within the nation. We are trying to solve. We lack a certain level of determination in leadership in certain periods of time.”

The spiritual guru, who has time and again stressed on the importance of national pride, told CNN-News18 that a sense of nationalism is at present required for the growth and nourishment of the citizens.

“Our sense of nationalism should be calibrated for different levels of growth, evolution and development that happens in a nation, As the issues of every citizen are solved, we can relax our sense of nationalism.”

“But right now we still are in need of this sense because there are still many who need proper nourishment. Nation is the only way to address human issues. There is no global mechanism to address the issue on a global scale. So national governance, policies and activism is required. We should ensure everyone should get their fundamental essentials.”

Sadhguru said that despite challenges from internal and external forces, along with economic challenges and struggles with the ongoing pandemic, Indians have fared well.

“In spite of all this we have come a long distance since 1947. The average life expectancy of Indians in 1947 was 28 years now it is 73. It’s a great achievement. Because nation means people and not just geography. There are still things to take care so that by the time we reach centenary we are in a good place and have a strong footing,” he said.

“Everyone should have all the fundamentals for expressing themselves. There’s no problem in understanding who we are. It is just that different cultures try to impact other cultures either by sword or gun or by market forces,” he added.

Quoting Mahatma Gandhi, he said, “Gandhi articulated this very well. ‘My doors and windows are open to every breath of fresh air that comes but I won’t let this air blow me away from my home” Which is every culture is welcomed but don’t lose the fundamentals of who we are?’”

Population growth, he said, is “not god given, it is a human activity that does it” and thus must aspire to extend human life span to its fullest possibility.

“This is not just because of reproduction, it is also because of the extended life span which is a good thing. We must aspire to extend human life span to its fullest possibility. That would also mean postponing death. While postponing death, birth should also be postponed,” Sadhguru said.

If we don’t do this consciously, nature will do this in cruel ways, he warned.

“To level our population, we must do it consciously. Density of population is a challenge. Scientists say there could be food shortages if we don’t reverse it. We can, of course, reverse it. We had a meeting in Cauvery Calling which is a plan to rejuvenate the soil in Cauvery basin. There are other projects too.”

Speaking about why regulating population and preserving the quality of soil and water is essential, he said, “In the last few centuries, we have faced severe famines. The quality of soil and water should be taken care of. Regulating our population could not be done through law and force but could be done through incentives and education.”

“Not every human is in a condition of being spiritually fired up who wouldn’t care about their surroundings. Most need a conducive atmosphere for their psychological nourishment. We have not nurtured arts and culture that has so many messages,” he added.

Arts, he pointed out, can play a big role in mental health awareness and issues related to it as “our own intelligence is now creating a havoc”.

“We have children who put in so many years in any one of the arts. We will take these arts in world level. Arts have various positive impact. Number of people are suffering mentally now. These arts could help them. I made my kids do 12 minutes of SaReGaMa and now they are focused. Our own intelligence is creating a havoc, So to stabilise our mind and body classical arts would help,” he said.

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