In 1954 Pondicherry, along with other French territories,
became part of independent India. On August 15th that year the
I want to mark this day by the expression of a long-cherished wish; that of becoming an Indian citizen.
From the first time I came to India - in 1914 - I felt that India is my true country, the country of my soul and spirit. I had decided to realise this wish as soon as India would be free. But I had to wait still longer because of my heavy responsibilities for the Ashram here in Pondicherry. Now the time has come when I can declare myself.
But, in accordance with Sri Aurobindo's ideal, my purpose is to show that truth lies in union rather than in division. To reject one nationality in order to obtain another is not an ideal solution. So I hope I shall be allowed to adopt a double nationality, that is to say, to remain French while I become an Indian.
I am French by birth and early education, I am Indian by choice and predilection. In my consciousness there is no antagonism between the two; on the contrary, they combine very well and complete one another.
I know also that I can be of service to both equally, for my only aim in life is to give a concrete form to Sri Aurobindo's great teaching and in his teaching he reveals that all the nations are essentially one and meant to express the Divine Unity upon earth through an organised and harmonious diversity.
Originally in "Mother India" August 1954
now in "Glimpses of the Mother's Life", volume 2, 1980, pages 262-263
and CWM, volume 13 "Words of the Mother - Part One", page 43
All published by Sri Aurobindo Ashram - Pondicherry
diffusion by SABDA