ERADICATING EVILS OF CASTE AND RELIGION
Whatever responsibility I accepted, I did the duties as they should be done. Even in matters which I disbelieved, I was very honest, sincere and more careful.
My real interest and resolve slowly grew towards eradicating the evils of caste and religion. Even in that lofty ideal, I did not deem that I would be the only fit person to do it. Somehow we were leading a very happy life. Without depending on anyone for anything our family flourished. What else is needed for a happy life. In other words, a man needs a healthy body and determination to work hard for his ideals. He should not be lazy or dependent on others for anything.
One should not change or give up his ideals for selfish gains or for getting the favour of others. A man must have such a freedom to pursue his ideals till his death.
I think I had that freedom and unique status. It is this freedom I enjoy and values most, that enables me to pursue my ideals. I am in no way blindly resolute.
If my senses are sensitive at the time of my death, I would feel happy about my life and die peacefully. I will be completely satisfied. I will not have any grouse or complaint. I will not feel that I have left anything unfinished.
Because I am alive, my life must have some work. There is no life without work. My mission was decided by me. I resolved to eradicate the evils of caste system. I decided to crusade against god and superstitions. My aim was to work with interest for the welfare of the society. I do, what all I can to better the society. When this feeling gradually developed, I took it as my full time life-work to reform the society.
WHY SELF-RESPECT MOVEMENT WAS STARTED?
I started the Self – Respect Movement with the same motive. If my ambition is fulfilled the class hatred in society will cease. Individuals will have no grievances. All these may exist in society merely for recreation! Even as people play or gamble on holidays, meet with dejection, worries, dissatisfaction, by nature’s action the society may be unnecessarily annoyed. It is common not only to human beings but to all living beings. So any man will have to face the good and the bad in life. With awareness of this I have launched the movement. This is otherwise interpreted as ‘Nish Kamiya Karma’, that is discharging duties without expecting good reward. Why should any one do so? When a man does something expecting some good, he will have to meet with worries. But in reality a living being has to choose some work or other. I have undertaken the Self-Respect movement as the work for me in life. But in this work I did not get myself dejected. It always gives me interest .
The philosophy of Self-Respect Movement is known to the world. The cause and effect theory is accepted by the wise world. The human being seeks the reasons for everything. He has begun to conduct research of nature. A life with ignorance is considered as a slave’s life. This is the doctrine of Self – Respect Movement. Before doing anything, one should think whether it is right or wrong, see the causes, analyse things, do research, and respect the truths. This is what the Self-Respect means. Freedom and Self-Respect are closely related.
Those who are for freedom today are neglecting the self-respect and human dignity of man. This is nothing but absurd. Without self-respect there will be no good of freedom.
It is the self-respect ideal that commands feelings of freedom. The freedom of the self-respect prevails strikingly. But the freedom of the real freedom lovers will not be clear even to himself. Even if he understands, it may be only in the case of particular thing.
GOD AND RELIGION
Religion is the sum of the rules related to cooperative living and code of conduct needed for a society. Self-Respect Movement is not against such a harmoneous society. Even if it is said that religion is needed to reach god we will not interfere. It is after all an individual’s personal affair.
But, if religion destroys the wisdom in the society, if it endangers the self-respect, if humanity is differentiated as high and low, if it brings disunity and demolishes freedom, our Self-Respect Movement will not leave it. Take for example numerous religions. Let us not worry about the religions of foreigners. Let us consider Hinduism, which is said to be our religion of India.
Is there any other reason for Indians to be so disunited? Is not Hinduism responsible for the creation of so many divisions and differences? Is not Hinduism responsible for the creation of so many castes, that too some as high and some as low? The Vedas and Sastras (Hindu Doctrines) prove these. If we are to get rid of castes and un-touchability without converting to other religions like Islam, think over whether anyone else except Brahmin is enjoying so much facility and freedom in social and economic fields. What else is needed to prove that Hindu religion should be destroyed? No one thinks about what religion has done to humanity.
The evils caused by the intoxicating drinks are lesser, when compared to the evils caused by religious fanaticism. Liquor spoils only when consumed. Religion spoils you the moment you think of it.
Religion not only creates the high and low discrimination in our social life, but also establishes high and low discrimination in our economy. Think over! Has not religion created a separate class of people who are hard working and a separate class of people who enjoy without any hard work?
The wealth of the world is denied to the toiling masses. Lazy fellows who do not exert or work are able to enjoy the wealth of the world. Is it not because of religion? Common man is in poverty. He is made a slave, a low caste and heinous human being. Those who have got exemption to work by religion are free from worries and are able to amass wealth and subordinate all others on account of this religion.
NO CASTE SYSTEM AMONG BIRDS OR ANIMALS
Birds, animals, worms, which are considered to be devoid of rationalism do not create castes, differences as high and low, in their own species. But man considered to be a rational being is suffering from all these because of religion.
Amongst dogs you don’t have a brahmin dog and pariah (untouchable) dog. Among donkeys and monkeys we do not find. But amongst men you have. Why? Is it not because of our religion? How many years old is Hinduism? What good has it done to Society so far.? The low caste existed even in the days of Rama who was considered as an incarnation of god. In the days of King Harichander there existed a Pariah (Untouchable) in the burial ground. Selling away one’s wife too was prevalent. To this day these evils are seen in our society. How are we to say that Hindu religion helped the people to progress?
See, what foolish notions are taught to the people by religion. The dead bodies are burnt to ashes and the ashes are immersed in water. But they are believed to be alive. The descendants of the dead hand over rice, dholl, vegetables, foot – wear etc., to a Brahmin to be safely and surely passed over to the dead.
How are we to believe that a man has an iota of sense or rationalism in doing all these? Why should you give things only to Brahmins? Why should you fall at his feet? Why should you wash his feet and drink that water? If this is Hindu doctrine and philosophy, such a religion must go. Take the other rituals. Christening, house warming, marriage, puberty or anything, all are for Brahmin’s gain. Do people of other religions and countries behave like this? We do not respect our knowledge nor are we ashmed of our actions. Are we merely a mass of flesh and bones? Why should anybody get angry when I say all these to make you to think over. Who is responsible for our degradation? Is it religion or government?