Ravidranath Thakur said that
I love India,
not because I cultivate the idolatry of geography,
not because I have had the chance to be born in her soil,
but because she has saved through tumultuous ages
the living words that have issued from the illuminated consciousness of her great sons.
Since ancient times, Indian philosophers started thinking about secrets of the universe.
And the questions that were raised by famous Nasadiya Sukt of Rig Ved,
they appear so close to modern scientific thoughts of this day.
Written in post vedic period, Upanishads progress the same idea.
What is soul?
Creation and creator, are they same or different?
The conversation between Nachiketa and Yam in Khathopnishad,
have tried to answer these questions
In the ages of Mahabharat, Ramayan and other epics,
when questions about power and morality were raised,
they were seriously discussed in Shanti-Parv and Bhagvat Geeta
Preaching of Lord Krishna to Arjun describes this dilemma.
After that, new meanings of Geeta were discovered in every age
Later on, Lord Buddh insisted
that it is wrong to thing along with narratives and traditions.
Only, what is identified by reasoning, is correct.
which, a human accepts by his own logic and inference.
Follower of Lord Buddh, emperor Ashok questioned about violence, peace,
goodwill, right and wrong applications of power.
Then came the Bhakti saints, like Appar
who decided to renounce caste system, traditions, rituals etc.
and rejected any need between formless or physical god and devotee.
After arrival of Islam in India, a new source was found.
which flourished here along with Greek and Iranian effects in Arabian culture.
Thinkers like Al Baruni, still refused to accept the monarch as Zile Subhani (the one under God's shade).
The medieval sufi-love tradition of Islam considered Ishqe-Majazi a step towards Ishqe-Haquiqi
Idea of passion was made a part of Bhakti upto limits of pain and madness.
as we find in Hindi-Persian poems of Khusro
Bhakti-saint poets of North India once again started to reverse all traditions.
Primarily Kabir, who considered any discrimination like religion, caste and gender as audacity.
And accepted only one formless God.
Extending Kabir's thoughts,
Mughal emperor, Akbar took a step further towards goodwill and fraternity.
The same issue was debated between Akbar's grandson Aurangzeb, and Shivaji.
Then a new power, a reason of worry arrived India.
European colonialism of 18th century filled Britishers
with so much vanity and frenzy, that within no time, they became rulers of India.
The period when Europe was flourishing industrialization and rationalism,
then its influence was felt in some parts of India, especially Bengal and Maharashtra.
But chained in traditions, society of north-India opposed it, which led to revolt of 1857.
Ram Mohan Roy, and later reformers like Vivekanand knew that
the competition with Britishers has to be with thoughts, not weapons.
And unless we bring change to our society, we will not be free.
But even after changes, independence could not won.