Hindutva as Dharmic Resistance
The future, in many ways, will be a deep and intense battle of all dharmic forces against the forces that threaten to disrupt and destroy dharma, anywhere on earth. Hindutva is a first robust stand against these disruptive forces.
It bears reiterating that Hindutva cannot be aggressive or violent, for all forms of aggression and violence contradict the spirit of Hindutva. Those who would stand and fight for Hindutva must bear this in mind. The true strength of Hindutva lies in its spirit, in its core doctrine of growth of consciousness. The continuous widening and heightening of consciousness is the core idea around which the new Hindutva narrative must be built.
There is no doubt that forces stubbornly opposed to Hindutva must be fought, repelled, neutralized in every possible way. But fighting the way most others fight, through radicalization and weaponization, cannot be the Hindutva way. We must always bear in mind the simple fact that we are ultimately fighting to defend a way of being, and this way of being, however we may interpret it, does not justify aggression or violence. But again, this must not lead us to believe that we are to take aggression lying down. Just as physical or military violence is not an option, turning the other cheek too is not an option. What we need to learn is the art of resistance. Not the “passive resistance” of Gandhi but the dharmic resistance of Krishna — to stand in perfect equanimity in the light of our own deepest truth and be prepared to sacrifice our all for the cause; be prepared to die or kill, but without a trace of personal reaction, hatred or vengeance.
This will mean internalizing the battle, learning to take an inner stand, based on spiritual conviction and atma Shakti. Most human battles are fought externally, and so there is mayhem and wanton destruction, but the evil lives on. External violence cannot eradicate the evil, for the evil resides in the consciousness of people, and no outer battle can destroy that. To uproot the evil from its bleeding roots, we must learn to fight the battle where it matters most — in consciousness. This is the import of dharmic resistance: to stand in the way of adharma like a mountain, as unshakeable, as imperturbable, as absolute, and let the true consciousness become the force field around us.
For such a dharmic resistance, the yoddha or the warrior must find the truth of his soul. The dharma yoddha must bring to himself or herself the strengths and resources of the consciousness, which are inconceivably greater than all the physical, economic and military resources we can garner. In fact, the outer resources, physical, economic or military, will find their true purpose and power when led by the consciousness, by the inner truth, by the force of Dharma itself.
All this may sound somewhat abstract and impractical to those moved by great passion for Dharma, those who would rather fight in the trenches, but let us recall that the dharmayuddha of old was fought first of all in the mind and spirit. Sri Krishna first brought Arjun to the great inner realization of Dharma, to the vast truth of the atman, and only then did he send Arjun into the battlefield to kill. The Bhagavad Gita is not mere metaphor, it is real in every word and sentence. Though it seems fashionable for some modern scholars to interpret the Gita in terms of psychological metaphor, we must not let all that distract us; the Gita is as literal as it gets. The dharmayuddha that Arjun was exhorted to fight was as real then as it is now; the forces of adharma rage around us today even more ferociously and formidably than it did then. It is now, more than ever, that we need to use the Gita as our brahmāstra, literally.
To abandon the deeper spiritual message of the Gita at this critical time in our own dharmayuddha and rush in with weapons of destruction would be utterly foolhardy. The Gita is our manual for action, the whole strategy for the battle, the assurance of victory.
And what indeed is this strategy? This can be summarized in just two points:
First of all, root yourself in the truth of your being, become atmasthita. This is crucial. To go into dharmayuddha without being firmly established in one’s own dharma would be worse than soldiers going into combat without basic training in martial arts. Being atmasthita is not abstract spirituality, as Krishna makes perfectly clear to Arjun; it is the very key to victory. The atman is the true source of strength and wisdom, it is that which raises the yoddha to another level altogether, it is the singular game changer.
Second, being atmasthita, surrender the outcome of the battle to the Divine, relinquish all personal demand for victory and trust the infinitely vaster Divine Wisdom and Vision that unerringly guides all life in the universe. When we do that, we open ourselves in a very real and practical way to the direct guidance and inspiration of the Divine, we become instruments in its vaster action and are no longer left to our own meagre devices and resources. This is something that can be done effortlessly once we understand the deeper truth that Dharma and the dharmayuddha are finally not in human hands but in the hands of the Divine. If Dharma indeed is eternal, then it is also protected by the eternal consciousness. We are all mere instruments, nimitta matra, whether we like it or not. That which is already determined in the Divine’s cosmic vision is eventually what will happen in this world. Our business as instruments in the action is to keep our minds and hearts, our volition and actions, aligned to the Divine and go forth in battle protected by the armor of an inner knowing that no outer knowledge or force can rival.
Thus are we made into true warriors of Dharma. Let us reflect upon this before we rush into battle.