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 Title : The concept of Leader in vedic literature Author : Dr.Mahashweta Chaturvedi

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The word leader is always related to people who are connected to politics. The common man does not understand the term 'Leader'. In politics people who become "Agooa" are called as leaders. Whatever goals he has set for himself, since he leads the people, he is automatically called "Netaji". People award him this title easily.

The scientific definition of the word leader is in fact very different from the common definition as it is understood. Leader means chief. In the Vedic Ruchas "Fire" is called as "the first" and is considered as the guiding light of mankind.

In the first few 'Ruchas' of the Rigveda fire has been called as 'Purohit'. Agni meaning fire, represent God, and in the beginning of this universe there was God and so God is also called Purohit. The soul is existing before the body and so the soul is Purohit. Fire is seen in the form of 'sun' before all other substances of this world and so fire is Purohit. All sacrifices, that is Yadnyas, are possible only with the help of fire, so fire is the light. Since God is the arranger of all seasons, he is called as 'Ritvik'.

The existence of seasons depends upon the fire in the form of the sun, so the fire is also called as 'Ritvik'. The offerings made by the God are unmatched and so he is called as the one who throws articles of oblation in the sacrificial fire. The soul is the one who enjoys the fruits of deeds, so the soul is the one throws articles of oblation in the sacrificial fire. The soul is also called 'Ratnaghatamam' as it is the creator of the sun, the moon, the earth, milk, fire etc. The word fire means the chief. Ofcourse the God himself is fire, the sun, the wind and the moon. He himself is the Shukra, the Brahma, the Water and the king. The names fire, wind, the sun, the deity of the waters - varuna, etc are the names of the almighty God. Fire is the elevator as it is the chief. The God is the elevator of all and so he is venerable and respectable.

The leader is revered as he is the guide of all, he takes care of everybody's upliftment. In this case, if we analyze the word 'leader' then the political leader does not fit into the category of the 'fire'. A leader as bright as the sun only can lead the people and also the nation. But the leader who is very selfish, who is only only interested in self and not the nation and its people, who does not understand the effort and pain of the people, who does not know the problems of the people, who only makes tall claims but cannot fulfill them, such a leader is a corrupt character according to the Vedic angle. Such a leader takes the entire nation towards decline. Any goal achieved without devotion is meaningless. A leader is made through true devotion only.

In the hymns of Yajurveda we find a thorough investigation about becoming of a leader. In the Yajurveda 15/23 the ways of becoming a leader are described
1. The one aspiring to become a leader must pay attention to his behaviour. His behaviour should be such, which will attain happiness and growth for everyone.
2. He should excel in all virtues like knowledge, etc. If he lacks in any virtues or he is not suitable, then his leadership will not lead any merit.
3. A leader must have a very sweet language. His language should be able to achieve the result he wants. The language can do wonders. It can attract everybody. If the leader does not passes a sweet tongue, that means if he does not have wonderful oratory skills, then the people will not get attracted towards him. In addition to good oratory skills the leader should also do good cause to win the hearts of the people. In Rigveda 10/38/4 we find a few guiding principles about the concept of a 'protector'. They are as follows -

We can appoint that pure, scholar, straightforward and glorious leader to protect our land with whom the small and the grown up feel comfortable, who has the knowledge of ordinance and methods when dealing with people.A leader is not only the elevator of the nation, but he also is the protector of the people and is the deterrent of the problems and efforts of the people. The Vedic nature of a true 'leader' is quite encouraging and worth assimilating for every person aspiring to become a leader. If a person attains leadership without any of these virtues, then his leadership does not take a permanent form. Such leader brings calamities over the whole nation. The unsatisfied people or kingdom always with to remove the leader from his post. Today the leader should know the Vedic nature of a true "leader", only then progress of a nation can be achieved.

Tag Names : Rugveda,Ved
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