In his missionary work of propagating the great philosophical truths of the Upanishads and of rediscovering through them the true cultural basis of our nation, Acharya Sankara had a variety of efficient weapons in his resourceful armoury. He was indeed pre-eminently the fittest genius, who alone could have undertaken this self-appointed task as the sole guardian angel of the Rishi culture.
An exquisite thinker, a brilliant intellect, a personality scintillating with the vision of Truth, a heart throbbing with industrious faith and ardent desire to save the nation, sweetly emotional and relentlessly logical, in Sankara the Upanishads discovered the fittest Spiritual General.
It was indeed a vast programme that Sankara had to accomplish within the span of about twenty effective years, for at the age of thirty-two he had finished his work and folded up his manifestation among the mortals of the world.
He had brought into his work his literary dexterity, both in prose and poetry, and at his hands, under the heat of his fervent ideals, the great Sanskrit language became almost plastic. He could mould it into any shape and into any form. From vigorous prose, heavily laden with irresistible arguments, to flowing rivulets of lilting tuneful songs of love and beauty, there is no technique in language that Sankara did not take up; and whatever form he took up, he proved himself to be a master in it. From masculine prose to soft feminine songs, from marching militant verses to dancing songful words, be he in the halls of the Upanishad commentaries or in the temple of the Brahma-Sutra expositions, or in the amphitheatre of Bhagavad Geeta discourses, or in the open flowery fields of his devotional songs, his was a pen that danced itself to the rhythm of his heart, and to the swing of his thoughts.
Pen alone would not have won the war of culture for our country. He showed himself as a great organiser, a far-sighted diplomat, a courageous hero and a tireless servant of the country. Selfless and unassuming, this mighty angel strode up and down the length and breadth of the country, serving his motherland and teaching his countrymen to love up to the dignity and glory of Bharat. Such a vast programme can neither be accomplished by an individual nor sustainaedbly kept up without institutions of great discipline and perfect organisation. Establishing the Mathas, opening up temples, organising halls of education and even establishing certain ecclesiastical legislations, this mighty master left nothing undone in maintaining what he achieved.
Perfected masters are the sacred instruments through which the Lord functions to maintain the universal rhythm and keep the world a healthy field for the onward march of evolution. The Infinite Will can readily play Itself through such men of total identification with the Lord, and they alone, are, therefore, the most competent instruments for the Universal Law to accomplish Its divine purpose.
23rd April 2015 was celebrated as Sri Sankara Jayantihi at the Chinmaya Ashram, Charles Jolivet Street, Beau Bassin.
* Published in print edition on 1st May 2015