Hindu Rashtra Darshan which give the true meaning and correct picture of the Hindu Rashtra. Wherein everyone living on the land this side of Indus river is a Hindu by Culture, by values and not by the religion in its narrow definition. The book is divided in three major parts, first part is Hindu Pad-Padshahi, Second Hind Rashtra Darshan and Third part is Essentials of Hindutva.
In spite of the fact that the past is ever rapidly receding from us further and further, the indefatigable exertions of a band of Maratha scholars led by Messrs Rajwade and others had thrown such a flood of new light on the history of the Hindu Empire of Maharashtra that the salient features of that great movement have become far more clearly discernible to us than they were to those who were constrained for want of better means to view the history through the distorted and dim glasses of foreign scholarship alone. But as the monumental material, consisting of state records, documents, original letters and contemporary narratives that the Maratha scholars have discovered and laid under contribution, is to a very great extent confined to the Marathi language and as no attempt excepting that of Justice Ranade, has been made to rewrite, at least concisely, the history of Maharashtra in the light that these valuable researches throw on it, in a language that would place before the Non-Maratha scholars and readers the fruits of their labours, the Indian public, not to speak of that of any other nation, has still very dim, curious and even perverted notions regarding both the heroic principles that animated the Maratha movement as well as the far-reaching effects it had on the course of the larger history of the Indian people. In the absence of such a comprehensive work as would marshal out all the details of this history under a masterly review in this new light thrown on it, we had long intended to write at least a monograph, a small handbook that would pave a way to a large work and acquaint the Non-Maratha readers with the great message that the movement came to deliver, the outline of the momentous mission it strove to fulfil. In 1910 we had, just after finishing the work we wrote on the history of the Sikhs but which was throttled even in the hour of its birth by the ruthless shocks of Revolutionary struggle, even commenced such a handbook in the English language on the history of the Marathas.
Just then duties more imminent and exacting involved us in a dreadful combat with forces of darkness and death in the solitary cells of the Andamans and blotted out the very hope of ever surviving to resume our labour of love.
But ultimately it has pleased Providence to grant us liberty and strength enough to take up our pen again, and thus we are able today to pay this humble and loving tribute to the mission of those of our illustrious forefathers who, in the 17,h and the 18,h centuries, fought so gallantly and succeeded so well in vindicating the honour, and winning back the Freedom of our Hindu Race.
Even an essentially provincial movement whether it be a Rajput or a Sikh, a Maratha or a Madrasi, achi ment is bound to reflect its greatness on the history of Hindudom as a whole. The achievement of a section necessarily reveals the latent possibilities of the whole race. But apart from that reason the Mratha movement under review transcends the limits of a provincial movement so decisively and so deliberately that it seems pre-eminently entitled to a Pan-Hindu importance and treatment. In fact, we will fail to understand its significance altogether unless it is perceived from a Pan-Hindu stand-point. Therefore, our chief aim in writing this critical work which is primarily addressed to the public outside Maharashtra, has been to ascertain and appraise the value of the Maratha movement in terms of Hindu history. The book is, therefore, meant, not primarily to tell a detailed story of the Hindu Empire of Maharashtra, but to bring out the salient principles and ideals that animated it. Never-the-less, we have devoted the first part to draw a running sketch of the Maratha history, giving in more or less correlated from such events and details as we thought absolutely necessary to substantiate general observations made in the second part. As the public outside Maharashtra is acquainted better with the life of Shivaji and as Mr. Ranade, the gifted author of The Rise of the Maratha Power, has unravelled to that public the inner moral grandeur of the mission and of the activities of the Marathas down to Rajaram's death and Shahu's return, we have referred to that period but in passing and concerned ourselves more with the period that follows it:
The grand message that the story of the rise and fall of this our Hindu Empire has to deliver to our Hindu race is writ large on every page of the Book. So we need very little to say and introduce it to our Hindu brethren.
To our Mohammadan readers, however, a word of explanation is needed. The duty of a Historian is primarily to depict as far as possible the feelings, motives, emotions and actions of the actors themselves whose deeds he aims to relate. This he cannot do faithfully and well, unless he, for the time being, rids himself not only of all prejudices and prepossessions but even of the fears of the consequences the story of the past might be calculated to have on the interest of the present. That latter end he should try to serve by any other means than the falsification or exaggeration or underestimation of the intentions and actions of the past. A writer on the life of Muhammad, far example, would be wanting in his duty, if he tries to smoothen down the fierce attach on 'idolatry' and the dreadful threats held before the Unbelievers by that heroic Arab, only to ingratiate himself with the sentiments of those of his fellow-countrymen or readers who do not belong to the Moslem persuasion. He should try to do that by being himself more tolerant, or even by drawing a moral more in consonance with reason and freedom of thought and worship, if he can honestly do so, after he has faithfully recounted the story of that life with all its uncompromising episodes. If he cannot do that, he had better give up the thought of writing the life of Muhammad altogether. Just as this responsibility lies on the shoulder of an honest biographer of Muhammad, there is a corresponding obligation on the part of those of his readers who do not fully, or at all contribute to the teaching of Muhammad, which they owe to the writer. They too ought to know that an author who in the discharge of his duties as a historian of yesterday, of Muhammed or Babar or Aurangzeb, depicts their aspirations and deeds in all their moods, fierce or otherwise, faithfully and even gloriously or appreciatingly, need not necessarily be wanting in the discharge of his duties as a citizen of today, may even be most kindly disposed to his fellow countrymen or fellowmen of other religious persuasions or racial lineage. In dealing with that period of Hindu History when the Hindus were engaged in a struggle of life and death with the Muhammadan power, we have never played false to our duty of depicting the great actions and their causes in relation to their environments and expressing the sentiments of the actors almost in their own words, trying thus to discharge the duty of an author as faithfully as we could. Especially our Muhammadan countrymen, against the deeds of whose ancestors the history under review was a giant and mighty protest which we hold justifiable, will try to read it without attributing, solely on that ground, any ill feeling to us towards our Muhammadan countrymen of this generation or towards the community itself as such. It would be as suicidal and as ridiculous to borrow hostilities and combats of the past only to fight them out into the present, as it would be for a Hindu and a Muhammadan to lock each other suddenly in a death-grip while embracing, only because Shivaji and Afzulkhan had done so hundreds of years ago.
We ought to read history, not with a view to find out the best excuse to perpetuate the old strife and stress, bickerings and bloodsheds, whether in the name of our blessed motherland, "of our Lord God", that divided man from man and race from race, but precisely for the contrary reason of finding out the root causes that contributed to, and the best means to the removal of that stress and strife, of those bickerings and bloodsheds, so that man may be drawn towards man because he is man, the child of that our common father Godùand nursed at the breast of this our common motherùEarthùand wield humanity in a World-Commonwealth.
But, on the other hand, the brilliance of this ultimate hope ought not to dazzle our eyes into blindness towards the solid and imminent fact that men and groups, and races in the process to consolidation into larger social units have, under the stern law of nature, to get forged into that large existence of the anvil of war through struggle and sacrifice. Those alone who can stand this fierce ordeal will prove their fitness, not only the moral but even the physical fitness that entitles races and types to survive in this world. Therefore, before you make out a case for unity, you must make out a case for survival as a national or a social human unit. It was this fierce test that the Hindus were called upon to pass in their deadly struggle with the Muhammadan powers. There could not be an honourable unity between a slave and his master. Had the Hindus failed to rise and prove their strength to seek retribution for the wrongs done to them as a nation and a race, even if the Muhammadans stretched out a hand of peace, it would have been an act of condescension and not of friendship, and the Hindus could not have honourably grasped it with that fervour and sincerity and confidence which sense of quality alone breeds. But the colossal struggle which the Hindus-waged with those who were then their foemen in the name of their Dev and Desh, really paved the way to an honourable unity between the two combating giants. That is why we said, in our work on the history of the national Rising of 1857. that the day that witnessed the forces of'Haribhaktas' of Hundudom, enter Delhi in triumph and the Moslem throne and crown and standard lay hammered and rolling in dust at the feet of Bhau and Vishvas in 1761, was the day which made an honourable unity between the Hindus and the Moslems more or less feasible. For, that day the Hindus won their freedom back, proved even their physical fitness to survive on equal and honourable terms in this world. They conquered the conqueror and then could honourably embrace him if so he wished, as a fellow countryman and friend. Viewed in this light, the history of the Marathas is so far from standing in the way of any real and honourable unity between our Hindus and our Muhammadan countrymen that properly understood it, makes a frank and lasting union far more feasible than it would otherwise have been, and deserves, therefore, to be especially recommended to the attention of all Indian patriots, Moslems as well as Hindus.
It cannot fail to act as a sedative on blustering snobbery on the one hand and as a stimulant to mopping self-diffidence on the other.
For the general reader, too, the story of a movement that presents the imposing spectacle of a nation in arms in defence of their just and human rights, that enlists itself on the side and in the cause of Freedom and National independence, and that brings into action generations of warriors and statesmen and builders of kingdoms and saints and poetsùShivaji and Baji Rao, Bhausaheb and Jankoji, Nana and Mahadaji, Ramdas and Moropantùcannot fail to be of an absorbing human interest.
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