Literature Connotes Spirit of Welfare
(Vinod Anand)

The real significance of the word sahitya or literature is inherent in the word itself for the characteristic of literature is ‘to move together’, keeping abreast of life. Literature is no invention of the superficiality of social life, nor is it the colourful spell of any fantasia.

Rather it is the portrait of real life — an external expression of the internal recesses of the mind — a bold and powerful expression of the suppressed sighs of the human heart.

In order to preserve the sanctity and prestige of its name, literature must maintain its rhythm in pace with the dynamic currents of society. The word sahitya can be interpreted in another way as well: sa+hita= hitena saha; that which coexists with hita or ‘welfare’. Where there is no inner spirit of welfare, we cannot use the term sahitya.

The creations or compositions of those who proclaim that “Art is for art’s sake”, cannot be treated as sahitya. Indeed, that welfare which pertains to the mundane world is relative; its definition also may change according to the changes in time, place and person.

But that aspect of the term hita which leads human beings to absolute truth is one and the same for all ages and countries. In order to communicate with people at different states of development, and of different ideas, the same concept of welfare has to be expressed through different branches of knowledge.

The grand, benevolent flow of ideas, with the common people on one side, and the state of Supreme Bliss on the other—this is called literature; for in every particle, in every rhythmic expression of this very benevolent thought process, the Supreme Bliss is lying dormant.

Thus ‘literature’ is that which moves together with society, which leads society towards true fulfillment and welfare by pro viding the inspiration for service. We could say, “Art for service and blessedness.”

In every expression, in every stratum of this universe, however crude or subtle, only one refrain prevails, and that refrain is the attainment of bliss.

In that artistic movement towards welfare both the attainment and the bestowal of happiness find simultaneous expression, When litterateurs dedicate themselves to the service of literature, they have to let their creative genius flow in this very current: they have to cleanse all that is turbid, all that is inauspicious in individual life in the holy waters of their universal mentality and then convey it sweetly and gracefully into the heart of humanity Herein lies the fulfillment of their service, the consummation of their sadhana.

If the sweet, benevolent sentiment of individual life fails to inspire collective life, we cannot consider such a creation as art. Those who are unwilling or unable to create sahitya as a means of service should not try to place the blame on the collective mind, hiding their own impure thoughts behind their grandiloquence and bluster.

The aim of artistic creation is to impart joy and bliss. The bestowers of this bliss, the servers of the people, cannot keep their daily lives aloof from commonplace events, mingled with pleasures and pains, smiles and tears.

People seek deliverance from the whirlpools of darkness; they aspire to illuminate their lives and minds with ever-new light. In all their actions, in all their feelings, there is an inherent tendency to move forward; therefore, if at all they are to be offered something, the creator of art cannot remain idle or inert.

Author's Bio: 

Love is Basic in Life


Born in 1939, and holding Master’s Degree both in Mathematics (1959) and Economics (1961), and Doctorate Degree in Economics (1970), Dr. Vinod K.Anand has about forty five years of teaching, research, and project work experience in Economic Theory (both micro and macro), Quantitative Economics, Public Economics, New Political Economy, and Development Economics with a special focus on economic and social provisions revolving around poverty, inequality, and unemployment issues, and also on informal sector studies. His last assignment was at the National University of Lesotho (Southern Africa) from 2006 to 2008. Prior to that he was placed as Professor and Head of the Department of Economics at the University of North-West in the Republic of South Africa, and University of Allahabad in India, Professor at the National University of Lesotho, Associate Professor at the University of Botswana, Gaborone in Botswana, and at Gezira University in Wad Medani, Sudan, Head, Department of Arts and Social Sciences, Yola in Nigeria, Principal Lecturer in Economics at Maiduguri University in Nigeria, and as Lecturer at the Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria in Nigeria. Professor Anand has by now published more than 80 research papers in standard academic journals, authored 11 books, supervised a number of doctoral theses, was examiner for more than twenty Ph.D. theses, and has wide consultancy experience both in India and abroad, essentially in the African continent. This includes holding the position of Primary Researcher, Principal Consultant etc. in a number of Research Projects sponsored and funded by Universities, Governments, and International Bodies like, USAID, IDRC, and AERC. His publications include a variety of themes revolving around Economic Theory, New Political Economy, Quantitative Economics, Development Economics, and Informal Sector Studies. His consultancy assignments in India, Nigeria, Sudan, Botswana, and the Republic of South Africa include Non-Directory Enterprises in Allahabad, India, Small Scale Enterprises in the Northern States of Nigeria, The Absolute Poverty Line in Sudan, The Small Scale Enterprises in Wad Medani, Sudan, Micro and Small Scale Enterprises in Botswana, The Place of Non-Formal Micro-Enterprises in Botswana, Resettlement of a Squatter Community in the Vryburg District of North West Province in the Republic of South Africa, Trade and Investment Development Programme for Small, Medium and Micro Enterprises: Support for NTSIKA in the Republic of South Africa, and Development of the Manufacturing Sector in the Republic of South Africa’s North West Province: An Approach Based on Firm Level Surveys. Professor Anand has also extensively participated in a number of conferences, offered many seminars, participated in a number of workshops, and delivered a variety of Refresher Lectures at different venues both in India and abroad. Dr. Anand was placed at the prestigious Indian Institute of Advanced Study (IIAS), Shimla in the State Himachal Pradesh, India as a Fellow from 2001 to 2003, and had completed a theoretical and qualitative research project/monograph on the Employment Profile of Micro Enterprises in the State of Himachal Pradseh, India.