What I feel important in this is that each one of us should solve this problem and not leave it to the leaders. This problem, this catastrophe requires, not static thinking but revolutionary thinking, a thinking which is not based on any ideology, whether of Hinduism, Nationalism or Capitalism. It requires a change in our thinking. And so, the approach to the problem becomes all important. The `how' is more important than 'action'. So, to know how to approach this catastrophe is more important than what to do about it. That `how' can only be understood, when we are capable of looking at the problem through ourselves and not through formula. That is, as it is a world catastrophe, it requires a mind that is capable of looking at it without any prejudice. You cannot look at it as a Brahmin or as a Mussalman, as a Christian or as a Buddhist. Because we have looked at it in the past in this way we have brought about this crisis. Because of tradition and other absurdities among us, we have brought about this problem and if we approach the problem with the same mentality, we shall not clarify or understand it, but only further it. It is as if we were standing near a precipice with our minds biased, and we have come to that bias through centuries of division, communal and social, rich and poor; divisions of formulae, organized religious divisions and so on have brought us to this appalling misery and `confusion'. If we would understand it, we must go away from the precipice and look at the problem. We cannot stand at the precipice, at the edge of the precipice and try to solve the problem. On the contrary, we must completely abandon those causes which have brought us to that stage and look at the problem from a distance and that is where our difficulty is.
We know the catastrophe, we know the sociological causes of the wars that have been fought and the wars that are going to be fought. Preparations are going on with marvellous skill for the third war and you and I know that is the edge of the precipice. I do not think India is going to escape from it. Most of us realize, how comparatively serious the whole thing is. We read about it all in the papers but are distracted away by our immediate demands and pleasures and pains. But the catastrophe is enormously serious and that is why if we would salvage something out of this catastrophe, we would become very serious and feel sorry for the absurdities of class divisions and the like. If the problem were serious enough we would do something about it. If you had a toothache you would do something immediately. But this pain is much greater and more grievous than a toothache. It is more continuous, more distant and that is why we are doing nothing. We are looking to leaders, gurus, formulae, systems, etc., we look either to Moscow or to Washington. So, we are at the edge of it and we have to confront it.
Public Talk 22nd October, 1947