The future belongs to the young. It is a young and new world which is now under process of development and it is the young who must create it. But it is also a world of truth, courage, justice, lofty aspiration and straightforward fulfilment which we seek to create. For the coward, for the self-seeker, for the talker who goes forward at the beginning and afterwards leaves his fellows in the lurch there is no place in the future…. A brave, frank, clear-hearted, courageous and aspiring youth is the only foundation on which the future nation can be built…
Secondly, let them not only stand by their choice but stand by their comrades. Unless they develop the corporate spirit and the sense of honour which refuses to save oneself by the sacrifice of one’s comrades in action when that sacrifice can be averted by standing together, they will not be fit for the work they will have to do when they are a little older. Whatever they do let them do as a body, whatever they suffer let them suffer as a body, leaving out the coward and the falterer but, once they are compact, never losing or allowing anything to break that compactness.
– Sri Aurobindo
What is Youth?
Youth does not depend on the small number of years one has lived, but on the capacity to grow and progress. To grow is to increase one’s potentialities, one’s capacities; to progress is to make constantly more perfect the capacities that one already possesses. Old age does not come from a great number of years but from the incapacity or the refusal to continue to grow and progress. I have known old people of twenty and young people of seventy. As soon as one wants to settle down in life and reap the benefits of one’s past efforts, as soon as one thinks that one has done what one had to do and accomplished what one had to accomplish, in short, as soon as one ceases to progress, to advance along the road of perfection, one is sure to fall back and become old.
– The Mother
Youth Is Progress
“It is not the number of years you have lived that makes you grow old. You become old when you stop progressing.
As soon as you feel you have done what you had to do, as soon as you think you know what you ought to know, as soon as you want to sit and enjoy the results of your effort, with the feeling you have worked enough in life, then at once you become old and begin to decline.
When, on the contrary, you are convinced that what you know is nothing compared to all which remains to be known, when you feel that what you have done is just the starting-point of what remains to be done, when you see the future like an attractive sun shining with the innumerable possibilities yet to be achieved, then you are young, however many are the years you have passed upon earth, young and rich with all the realizations of tomorrow.”