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Man's history is being shaped according to the difficulties it encounters. These have offeredus problems and claimed their solutions from us, the penalty of non-fulfilment being deathor degradation.These difficulties have been different in different peoples of the earth, and in the manner ofour overcoming them lies our distinction.The Scythians of the earlier period of Asiatic history had to struggle with the scarcity oftheir natural resources. The easiest solution that they could think of was to organize theirwhole population, men, women, and children, into bands of robbers. And they wereirresistible to those who were chiefly engaged in the constructive work of social cooperation.But fortunately for man the easiest path is not his truest path. If his nature were not ascomplex as it is, if it were as simple as that of a pack of hungry wolves, then, by this time,those hordes of marauders would have overrun the whole earth. But man, when confrontedwith difficulties, has to acknowledge that he is man, that he has his responsibilities to thehigher faculties of his nature, by ignoring which he may achieve success that is immediate,perhaps, but that will become a death-trap to him. For what are obstacles to the lowercreatures are opportunities to the higher life of man.To India has been given her problem from the beginning of history-it is the race problem.Races ethnologically different have in this country come into close contact. This fact hasbeen and still continues to be the most important one in our history. It is our mission toface it and prove our humanity by dealing with it in the fullest truth. Until we fulfil ourmission all other benefits will be denied us.There are other peoples in the world who have to overcome obstacles in their physicalsurroundings, or the menace of their powerful neighbours. They have organized theirpower till they are not only reasonably free from the tyranny of Nature and humanneighbours, but have a surplus of it left in their hands to employ against others. But inIndia, our difficulties being internal, our history has been the history of continual socialadjustment and not that of organized power for defence and aggression.
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About the Author
Bengali author and statesman Rabindranath Tagore was a poet, Brahmo philosopher, and cultural reformer. He lived during the long period of Indian independence and was acquainted with several political leaders in Asia. This book gives out his opinion on Nationalism.