And what is necessary for this awakening? In the first instance, true sincerity and the capacity to look our failings frankly in the face; and in the second instance, the passion of discontent which must arise from such a clear-sighted vision. And after this must come the resolute endeavour, at all costs, to set our house in order and, whenever necessary, to set present needs above old restrictions. The time for dragging a lengthening chain is over. We must awake to the shame of having sides to our daily life, which we cannot exhibit to the coolly appraising eye of the outsider. We must recognise how futile it is to seek to cover these up with words, when the eye of the World Spirit is all the time calmly regarding them and judging us in their light. In short, we have got to bring our India back into harmony with reality. And only when we have begun to do this, and mean to go on doing it, can her true liberation come.
In all this there is much that we can learn from other nations. Let us not be too proud to learn. In refinement and cleanliness of physical life, in labour-saving devices, in social freedom, in constructive organisation, in honourable co-operation and in an impersonal sense of duty, there are many lessons which the West can teach us; and in proportion as our efforts at self-perfection are genuine, we shall be ready and glad to learn, and when we have learnt, we too can teach. For there are lessons, which a spiritually re-awakened India could impart, which are at present outside the horizon of Western Thought. More than any other nation we could show mankind the dependence of physical life upon a larger invisible spiritual order. More too, than any other nation could we show it that happiness lies, not in possessions, but in a harmony between the outer life and life of the spirit within. But, in order to teach, we have first to make good our right to teach; and this we can only do by a wholesale reference of every detail of our national life, not to set some set of immemorial injunctions, but commonsense and the right feeling of today. This is the first step in the direction of true liberation, which, I feel, is necessary for India.