Can an enlightened soul take the lives of other human beings and violate the notion of non-violence? If he would have taken part in the Freedom fight, today many of us would have questioned whether Swami Vivekananda had really practised what he preached??
Swami Vivekananda was a monk and a monk’s duty is not limited to his country alone. He had a greater cause to live for- to spread the message of love, brotherhood, equality, peace and harmony in all parts of the world. Involving himself in the freedom fight would be like making his hands dirty with the stain of blood of the Britishers and instigating the very violence in other freedom fighters that they themselves suffered at the hands of the British Colonial.
Swamiji was patriotic and though he never involved in matters like Politics and Freedom movements personally, he did influence India’s independence movement through his writings that inspired independence activists like Subhas chandra bose, Mahatma Gandhi, Jawaharlal Nehru, Rajagopalachari, Bal Gangadhar Tilak etc.
According to Subhas Chandra Bose, a proponent of armed struggle for Indian independence, Vivekananda was “the maker of modern India” for Gandhi, Vivekananda’s influence increased Gandhi’s “love for his country a thousandfold“. Swami ji said:
The idea of freedom is the only true idea of salvation–freedom from everything, the senses, whether of pleasure or pain, from good as well as evil. More than this, we must be free from death; and to be free from death, we must be free from life. Life is but a dream of death. Where there is life, there will be death; so get away from life if you would be rid of death.
Muktipada Behera writes:
These lectures, published as ‘Lectures from Colombo to Almora’, demonstrate his nationalistic fervour and spiritual ideology. All freedom fighters in jail had one copy with them to ignite the patriotism in their mind. The situation was so influential that it created terror in the minds of the Britishers and British govt wanted to ban and close Ramakrishna mission. However, it was saved due to the divine intervention of holy mother, Sarada. She clarified to the British people that “this is a religious organization and has nothing to do with politics.”
Though Swami Vivekananda had not taken part in the Freedom struggle, he had contributed considerably in the uplift of the masses. He played a major role in spiritual enlightenment of Indian masses; spread Vedanta philosophy in the West and established Ramakrishna Mission for the service of the poor.