India, since independence, has been passing through a momentous phase of developments in practically every field of national activity. New vistas are confronting us with hopes and challenges. A great democracy is forming itself for the first time on Indian soil and, despite manifold obstacles, is moving steadily towards its goal.
An academic approach to our political life is sure to be of use exploring life-giving and sustaining guidelines, extracting the general significance of day-to-day events and communicating it in a national perspective to an interested public.
Such an approach itself is the product or an intensive study of the theory which has been formulated on the basis of earlier practice in various parts of the world. It ensures dispassionate observation, inquiry and a genuine interest in the pattern implicitly present in the phenomena.
If culture, at its best is concerned with the finer sense and sensitivity of man, politics is the aspect of human activity, based on instincts, desires and ambitions. Political scientists of the behaviorist school believe that it is no use evaluating political activity in the light of norms and patterns of the higher life.
They prefer to study realistically the patterns emerging from the regularly surging political activity around them. But the political scientists has to take into account both idealism and realism as two facets of political behavior and establish his thesis on this integral foundation.
Religion should not be confused with culture. A man of religion is not necessarily a of culture. To be a religious man means to be a subscriber to a body of dogmas.
In spite of his ethical behavior and moral fervor, a man religion may not be able to practice in his own life the formula for dynamic culture, the one that is based on a reconciliation of the spirit of one’s times with the genius of all times. We have to think of religion not as a bound of dogmas, but as the science of the infinite.
Unless Science is guided and regulated by the voices that have been heard through ages, there can hardly be any hope for peace and delight in this world. Nor can there be any future for the diffusion of culture among the larger masses of mankind.
One of the distinguishing features of political science that it is a science of the behavior of coalitions. One opinion is that it is primarily concerned with action in the name of the state or government. Others think that the struggle for power inherent in every society is its distinctive feature.
For it has to rise above the level of wisdom literature by applying to political behavior theories like the theory of games.
“The surfaces of life are easy to understand: their laws, characteristic movements, practical utilities are ready to our hand and we can seize on them and turn them to account with a sufficient facility and rapidity.
But they do not carry us very far. Nothing is more obscure to humanity or less seized by its understanding, whether in the power that moves it or the sense of the aim towards which it moves, than its own communal and collective life”.
It may be worthwhile, therefore, in our application of theory to any political problem, to view it from an angle that integrates the two aspects of “polities” as a behavioral science and as a “policy science” or political philosophy.
If some schools of political thought have no use for norms and patterns of human conduct, they can hardly be expected to influence political activity itself which is an unmitigated raw expression of human nature.
Some may hold science responsible for crimes that ought to be laid at the door of politicians. But scientists, like everybody else, are at the mercy of politicians. Politics has been described as the science of power. It is also the science of the utilization of power, whether it be horsepower, manpower, or atomic power.
Science has brought about a direction less and rudderless world in which life becomes a nightmare and man a physical and mental wreck, a prey to unknown psychological diseases and a victim of hysteria and mass hypnosis. Applied science threatens to be a Frankenstein strangling its own creator.
An infinite longing to unravel the mystery of the world has been the basis of science. This has led to certain great results. But curiosity can also take an unhealthy turn when it is allied to evil or ignorance. It is human nature that has to change if science is to be put to better use.
Religion should not be confused with culture. A man of religion isn’t necessarily a man of culture. To be a religious man means to be a subscriber to a body of dogmas.