Truth the Greatest Non-Violent Liberator
Mahatma Gandhi (2 October 1869 – 30 January 1948)
Mahatma Gandhi was an Indian politician and spiritual leader.
India from colonial dependency into political independence and has
inspired movements for civil rights and freedom across the world with
his methods based on non-violence.
He was born in Porbandar,
Gujarat in India. He was named Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi, but later
called Mahatma (The Great Soul) or Bapu (Father).
influenced by his mother’s Jainism, and its concept of ahimsa
(non-violence), but he was not particularly religious or spiritual as a
In 1888, he left India to study law at University College
London. It was there, when faced with the different lifestyles of
Westerners, he reflected on his own beliefs. As a vegetarian, he joined
the Vegetarian Society, and began reading in earnest the scriptures of
Hinduism, including the Bhagavad Gita, as well as doctrines on
Buddhism, Christianity and Islam.
After returning briefly to
India, Gandhi took a position at an Indian firm in South Africa. The
post was supposed to be for a year, but he stayed for twelve. First he
worked with Indians to oppose a bill denying Indians the right to vote.
The bill passed despite his efforts. In 1897, he was nearly lynched by
an angry white mob, but Gandhi refused to prosecute his assailants.
led the Indian resistance against forced registration in South Africa.
It was during this time Gandhi solidified his theories of peaceful
resistance through civil disobedience, eventually forcing the
government to agree to a compromise.
In 1915, Gandhi returned to
India. He would spend the rest of his life fighting – through
non-violence – for the independence of his country, for the rights of
his countrymen, and for peace between his brothers. It was this last
cause for which he would give his life.
included strikes, protests, and boycotts of British goods. He undertook
long fasts as means of both self-purification and social protest and
encouraged Indians to spin their own cloth and renounce British titles
of nobility. He was imprisoned for many years, on numerous occasions,
in both South Africa and India.
Following a mass protest that
ended in violence in 1922, Gandhi served two years in prison for
sedition. Afterward, he worked to bridge the gap between the Indian
political divisions that had intensified during his imprisonment.
1930, Gandhi led the 400 kilometre Salt March, in which thousands of
Indians journeyed to the sea to make their own salt, in protest of the
Salt Tax. The British arrested tens of thousands of Indians in the wake
of the campaign.
He organized numerous activities based on
Satyagraha (often referred to as passive resistance or civil
disobedience). Satyagraha literally translated means "hold on to the
truth" and the pursuit of truth is also a central core of Gandhi's
philosophy, the means of this quest is ahimsa (non-violence or love).
continued his opposition to British rule throughout World War II. In
1947, India finally won its long awaited independence. To avoid an
impending civil war between India’s Muslims and Hindus, Gandhi
reluctantly agreed to support the partition of the country into two
republics, India and Pakistan.
Just as Gandhi feared, the partitioning was accompanied by mass
30 January 1948, Gandhi was shot and killed by a radical Hindu, who
were opposed to reconciliation with Muslims. At Gandhi´s request, his
ashes were spread throughout India.
Gandhi led India to
independence. He showed the world that social and political changes can
be achieved not only through violence and terror, but also through love
and compassion. He tried to meet all living beings and creations of
nature with great respect and humility.
Mahatma Gandhi is
officially honoured in India as the Father of the Nation; his birthday,
2 October, is commemorated as ”Gandhi Jayanti”, a national holiday, and
world-wide as the International Day of Non-Violence. His numerous books
and quotes contain so much wisdom that they have gained immortality.
- An eye for an eye ends up making the whole world blind.
- Earth provides enough to satisfy every man's need, but not
every man's greed.
- Intolerance is itself a form of violence and an obstacle to
the growth of a true democratic spirit.
- There are many causes that I am prepared to die for but no
causes that I am prepared to kill for.
- Non-cooperation with evil is as much a duty as is
cooperation with good.
- The weak can never forgive. Forgiveness is the attribute of
- You can chain me, you can torture me, you can even destroy
this body, but you will never imprison my mind.
- You must be the change you wish to see in the world.
- Even if you are a minority of one, the truth is the truth.
that all through history the way of truth and love has always won.
There have been tyrants and murderers and for a time they seem
invincible but in the end, they always fall - think of it, always.
- Strength does not come from physical capacity. It comes
from an indomitable will.
- The only tyrant I accept in this world is the still voice
- To believe in something, and not to live it, is dishonest.
- There is no God higher than truth.
- The moment the slave resolves that he will no longer be a
slave, his fetters fall. Freedom and slavery are mental states.
- Fear has its use but cowardice has none.
- Good government is no substitute for self-government.
- In matters of conscience, the law of the majority has no
- First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they
fight you, then you win.
- No culture can live, if it attempts to be exclusive.
- Non-violence is a weapon of the strong.
- The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the
service of others.
humanity is one undivided and indivisible family, and each one of us is
responsible for the misdeeds of all the others. I cannot detach myself
from the wickedest soul.
- Always aim at complete harmony of thought and word and
deed. Always aim at purifying your thoughts and everything will be well.
- You may never know what results come of your action, but if
you do nothing there will be no result.
- The difference between what we do and what we are capable
of doing would suffice to solve most of the world's problems.
- Before healing others, heal yourself.
- An error does not become truth by reason of multiplied
propagation, nor does truth become error because nobody sees it.
- An ounce of practice is worth more than tons of preaching.
can give up, it's the easiest thing in the world to do. But to hold it
together when everyone else would understand if you fell apart, that's
- Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what
you do are in harmony.
- Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were
to live forever.
Roots of Violence: Wealth without work, Pleasure without conscience,
Knowledge without character, Commerce without morality, Science without
humanity, Worship without sacrifice, Politics without principles.
- Whenever you have truth it must be given with love, or the
message and the messenger will be rejected.
- Freedom is like a birth. Till we are fully free, we are
charter of freedom will be worth looking at which does not ensure the
same measure of freedom for the minorities as for the majority.
- No government on earth can make men, who have realized
freedom in their hearts, salute against their will.
- The bomb–throwers have discredited the cause of freedom, in
whose name they threw the bombs.
- The essence of true religious teaching is that one should
serve and befriend all.
- Terrorism and deception are weapons not of the strong but
of the weak.
- Democracy and dependence on the military and police are
- They cannot take away our self-respect if we do not give it
- We must always seek to ally ourselves with that part of the
enemy that knows what is right.
- We who seek justice will have to do justice to others.
- All reforms owe their origin to the initiation in
opposition of minorities in opposition to majorities.
- That economics is untrue which ignores or disregards moral
- What is gained by violence must be lost before superior
- Democracy, disciplined and enlightened, is the finest thing
in the world.
- A born democrat is a born disciplinarian.
- Truth is what the voice within tells you.
compromise is based on give and take, but there can be no give and take
on fundamentals. Any compromise on mere fundamentals is a surrender.
For it is all give and no take.
- To deprive a man of his natural
liberty and to deny to him the ordinary amenities of life is worse then
starving the body; it is starvation of the soul, the dweller in the
- Truth never damages a cause that is just.
must not lose faith in humanity. Humanity is an ocean; if a few drops
of the ocean are dirty, the ocean does not become dirty.
- Hate the sin, love the sinner.
- My life is my message.
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