The Argosies of Nature

When things violent or fearful take place let no one be alarmed or discouraged – they also are ‘His goings forth’. An individual or a nation cannot rise to its full height except through trouble and stress. The stone block patiently submits to hammering, cutting and chiselling to be made into the statue, which pleases the eye and gladdens the soul. If it could feel, it certainly would say, “How dearly I have to pay for the beautiful transformation”. This is the inexorable law of nature. Nature has not yet been known to relent in this respect. If you want to get anything grand and beautiful out of her, you must go through the process through which a peace of stone passes before it is endowed with shape, beauty and meaning. The fertilising river rolls down stones, breaks through the impediments, rends asunder the surface of the earth before it bears on its bosom the argosies and crowns the bordering lands with plenty. Those who cannot look this sternness of nature in the face are not destined for things good, noble and high. If you want to grovel in the dust, indolence and ease and ignoble peace may do, but if climbing up the heights of glory is your ambition, learn to encounter difficulties and dangers manfully.

Source: Shri. Aurobindo, ‘Bande Mataram’ – Political Writings and Speeches, 1890-1908 (p. 248)