Chapter twelve — Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose and the hooligan chief: A story written on 15 January 1979


There was once a great patriot who conquered the heart of everyone in India, specially the Bengalis. He was known as the leader of great leaders. When he was in college, he was a most brilliant student. He had tremendous fondness for spiritual and religious people. Whenever he could be of any help to the poor, the sick or the needy, he would be the first person to go there.

Once, when he was a young man, cholera broke out in Calcutta, and all the rich people left the city. When the epidemic broke out, there was no medical treatment for the poor, so this patriot used to go to the section of town where the very poor lived and treat them.

Now, in that part of town there were many hooligans. Their leader used to threaten him and say, "Do not come to our section and do not bother us. We do not want to see you. You are well-educated and come from a rich family, whereas we are very poor and uneducated. We do not want you here." But although the hooligans did not want him to come and help the poor, he did not care. He said, "Do whatever you want. If you want to kill me, kill me. I have come into the world to help the poor and sickly. I shall continue coming with my money and my food to try to help as much as I can."

One day the only son of the leader of the hooligans was attacked by cholera. So the young man went to his house and started caring for the son, feeding him and giving him medical treatment. The hooligan leader was so moved! He said to the young man, "I threatened you and warned you not to come to this area, and now when my own son is attacked by cholera, you come to help him. You are so brave."

The young man said, "It is not a matter of bravery; it is my necessity. I see God in everybody. When I see somebody is suffering, when I see another human being in need, I feel it is my duty to help him. One must help one's brother when he is in need."

The hooligan chief bowed down to the young man and said, "You are not a human being. You are Divinity incarnate."

This great leader and great patriot, this matchless leader and matchless patriot, was none other than Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose. The very mention of his name brings such a divine emotional feeling into the consciousness of India!

From:Sri Chinmoy,Mother, Your 50th Independence-Anniversary! I am come. Ever in Your Eternity's Cries and Your Infinity's Smiles, Subhas, Agni Press, 1997
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