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Resistance to New Invention

By Karmayogi

Orthodoxy, conservation, tradition are the old ways of life summarised by the modern term ‘Establishment’. That the old strongly resists the new is the order of the day. The old ways of life are so strong, that they can come back sooner or later, even if removed effectively. After the French Revolution, Napoleon made himself the Emperor. Later the royalty was restored. The same thing happened in England earlier. Even in democratic countries, the President of the nation behaves like a Monarch and people at all levels treat him as a King. The old is strongly entrenched, not easy to remove. As late as 1930, the US public opinion was not in favour of Darwin’s theory of evolution being taught in the schools. There was a famous case at that time against a teacher who taught the principle of evolution.

Those who stick to the old methods won’t permit a little change of any description. About 170 years ago the Railways came into existence. Christians who believed in the sanctity of the Sunday Sabbath would not allow the Railways to operate on Sundays. For several decades that rule prevailed. In Scotland it was there for a longer time than in England. Every innovation - the steamship, the telegraph, the phone, the radio, etc. - met with the same type of resistance. Science called it superstition, but later science developed its own orthodoxy. As recently as 1960 when Eisenhower was President of USA, he disliked the use of phones, though his position compelled him to use them frequently. Industrialists introduce new technologies, but try to operate them in the old way, thereby getting the minimal benefit.

Mother calls Sri Aurobindo’s Philosophy NEW Spirituality. Those who take to Mother happily follow the new spirituality in the ways of the old spirituality. Sooner or later, it stops working. But the old spirituality as well as the new spirituality are based on Truth. There never was a compromise on that score. There can be no two opinions about it. We are, in any situation, capable of distinguishing the truth from falsehood, whether it is technology or tradition. Let us not resist the truth in the name of anything, not even the sacred tradition. Tradition becomes sacred by its being true, not just by being tradition.
 
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