Discourses on PROUT
In society men are in an advantageous position. Due to economic dependence on men, a section of forsaken women is forced to take to the profession of prostitution. When women will enjoy economic independence and equal status in society this practice will cease to exist. Society will have to offer an honourable position to those women who will give up this nasty business and rectify their character. Prostitution is caused by socio-economic factors.
The dowry system is based on two factors: the economic predominance of either side in the society, and the disproportionate number of females or males in society. In Burma women were economically independent, so men had to pay a dowry at their wedding. In the Punjab the number of men was more than the number of women, hence there was no problem of the dowry system and widow marriage. This social injustice can be removed by allowing the economic independence to women and by encouraging inter-caste and international marriages. Such a movement is urgently required at present.
It has become a fashion today to cry for peace. But the preachers of peace propagate the gospel of peace and keep their powder dry. Will their vocal mission be successful? No, never. Peace is a relative term. It is the result of fight.
When the static force becomes predominant there will be peace, which is termed tamogun’ii sha’nti [static peace]. When the sentient force dominates there will also be peace, which is called sa’ttvikii sha’nti [sentient peace]. This fight between the static and sentient forces will continue as long as the universe exists. There cannot be any absolute peace in the realm of relativity. Absolute peace may shower down in an individual’s life, but not on the collective body. When individual animation is suspended in Cosmic animation, or when individual aspiration is suspended in Cosmic aspiration, the result is absolute peace. Absolute peace in the collective body means the suspension of the universe, which is an impossibility.
Hence, to cry for peace [avoiding fight] is hypocrisy. The craze for peace may be accepted as a diplomatic policy, but it cannot be accepted as a principle. Fight is the essence of life, and peace can be restored only after fight.
17 October 1959, Jamalpur
Discourses on Prout
If modern equipment is used in agriculture, agriculture will not remain labour intensive and people can be utilized in other activities to enhance the development of the country. For this, new arrangemnts will have to be created. If fewer people work in agricultural cooperatives, there will be substantial savings. Simultaneously, women and children will be freed from related work so they will get scope to develop themselves. In addition, increased mechanization will link the villages to the cities and towns and as a result the standard of living in the villagers will be increased.
from “Agrarian Revolution”
A Few Problems Solved Part 2
A rural economy should not depend solely on cottage industries, otherwise the economic welfare of the rural population will be jeopardized. If cottage industries are properly organized, rural women will also get ample scope to earn a decent livelihood. Cooperatives and the local administration will have to take the responsibility of supplying cottage industries with raw materials so that they do not suffer from scarcity.
16 March 1982, Calcutta
from “Decentralized Economy”
Prout in a Nutshell 21
Small-scale cottage industries can be started in every home in South Bengal so that even the women of the farming families can take part in industry. This approach will go a long way toward solving the widespread unemployment problem.
June 1988, Calcutta
from “South Bengal”
Prout in a Nutshell Part 20
Every individual or community will advance by virtue of its own inner vitality and assist in the collective fulfilment of the entire humanity. This is the true spirit of history. While writing history we will have to consider the various spheres of human life and ensure that proper directions are given for the development of each sphere. For instance, history should focus upon the prevalent educational system, cultural standards, thoughts and ideas, dress, the social condition of women, the role of women in the social and economic spheres, and the socio-economic conditions of the weak and backward communities of the society of a particular age. If any of these aspects are omitted while writing history, it will be incomplete.
28 February 1980, Patna
from “What Should History Be Like”
A Few Problems Solved Part 4
Psycho-economic exploitation is the latest form of dangerous and all-devouring capitalist exploitation. It is a special type of exploitation which first weakens and paralyses people psychologically in various ways, and then exploits them economically. Some of the methods of psycho-economic exploitation include, first, the suppression of the indigenous language and culture of the local people; secondly, the extensive propagation of pseudo-culture, exemplified by pornographic literature which debases people’s minds and undermines the vitality of the youth; thirdly, the imposition of numerous restrictions on women, forcing them to be economically dependent on men; forthly, an unpsychological educational system with frequent political interference by vested interests; fifthly, the negation of dharma in the name of secularism; sixthly, the balkanization of society into numerous castes and groups; seventhly, the damaging of society by the use of unnatural and harmful methods of birth control; and eightthly, placing the control over different mass media such as newspapers, radios and television, in the hands of the capitalists. Intellectual exploitation and psycho-economic exploitation are great dangers to the entire humanity today.
To counteract this threat, a powerful popular sentiment should be immediately generated for the liberation of intellect. For this, the first requisite factor is that the intellectuals in society must keep their intellects pure and unblemished. They will have to adjust to the level of the common people, casting aside their inertness and prejudicial notions. They should assist the masses in their development and extend their support to all anti-exploitation movements. This approach will ensure that exploitation is rooted out, the social structure is stabilized and the intellectual horizon of the human mind is expanded. If humanity follows such a path, human society will move forward to a brilliant future with rapid steps.
from “Capitalism In Three Spheres”
A Few Problems Solved Part 9
It may be asked, how should the property of a father be distributed among his children? While the Da’yabha’ga* system should be adopted everywhere, the rights of female children have to be safeguarded by giving them equal shares with their brothers so that they may not have to lead a life in penury if they become widowed. However, daughters may only enjoy this property during their lifetimes and they should not have the right of ownership. If they have no children, after they die the property should revert back to their brothers or their brothers’ children.
* In the Da’yabha’ga system the heirs’ right of inheritance is subject to the discretion of the father. Another feature of this system is the rights of inheritance for women. For a more detailed discussion of the author’s views on inheritance, see pp. 154 -156. –Trans.
The universe is our common patrimony. This patrimony has to be managed by the Proutists because others may suffer from selfish sentiments or groupism. To enjoy a right and to enjoy the right of management are not the same thing. Since human beings are mostly followers and not leaders, the right of management should be vested in a select few. In every sphere of life — social, economic, political, etc. — a very few intellectual-cum-intuitional workers should have the right to manage property and to safeguard the rights of others.
Each and every individual has the inborn right to enjoy our common patrimony, the mundane property. Anyone who violates this fundamental law is a vested interest. Nobody should be allowed to go against this patrimony. If anybody does so, they should be cured of their psychic ailments. The process of curing them may be termed dharma yuddha [the war for dharma].
July 1961, Ranchi
from “Talks on Prout”
Prout in a Nutshell Part 15