Mahatma Gandhi - Truths And Bitter Truths

Mahatma Gandhi
 Truths And Bitter Truths

Mahatma Gandhi father of the nation
Mahatma Gandhi
Often wonder if we really have any patriotic self within us. Gone are the days when we used to struggle for our independence. Gone are the days when we were so very pumped up to get our country free . Are they really gone?

 Not quite! Patriotism is way larger than that. It is about that feeling from deep inside, though little inhibited at time, though invisible superficially but yeah it is there within us..

  • The moment when you see a national flag.
  • The moment when you hear a good old fascinating patriotic song.
  • The moment you see Sachin getting a hundred.
  • The moment you see the newspaper saying a new advancement the country made.

You feel good inside, don't you? The word patriotism has taken a different shape over the years but it is still there, deep in our hearts we feel proud of our nation and blessed to be a part of it. The reason I talk about this is to build a base for the discussion about our national festivals. For 90% of all people in the world their relevance isn’t more than a public holiday, which is quite funny and grave at the same time.

I am born in India, so I know more about the public holidays here- 26th January, 15th August, and 2nd October. All of them are really very significant in their own way. Today we talk about the latter one-2nd October – the birth anniversary of the father of nation.
He was a great man no doubt about it.

"A man who commands respect even among his enemies defines the term ‘greatness’. "

I have stories that people back there in England acknowledge the charisma and admire the personality of this man. ‘Charisma’- Should I be using this word for a man – who looked skinny, poorly dressed, round glasses….not sure…

I recall a story I was told someday that bapu once saw a woman on the banks of a river washing the saree she was wearing as it was the only saree she had. He was so touched that he gave up wearing clothes over waistline. Charismatic!

You can't even leave your favorite pair of jeans. Gandhi famously led his followers in the Non-cooperation movement that protested the British-imposed salt tax with the 400 km (240 miles)in 1930. 60,000 persons gathered on the bank of the river to hear Gandhi's call to arms.
Read those numbers twice. You ask your best friend- can he come on a stroll with you for 400 km, he'll probably call ambulance for you.

Corruption, bribery, frauds, the nation is crippled we have lost that leadership within ourselves that pushed us to raise a voice against what is wrong. We have lost the Gandhi within us.

mahatma gandhi- dandi march

Mahatma Gandhi - A poor man with rich ideas

If you read about his way of working you’ll find out how planned and methodically he used to work. He did not only use big words in his speech- ahimsa (non violence), satyagraha(Literally, it is formed from thesatya, "truth", and aagraha, "asking for." ), purn swaraj(self rule), he practiced them with courage and took pride.
He was not only a figure you would like to learn from, but rather want to be like. his way of living inspired one and all to lead a simple inspirational life. Again, his ideologies might convice you one day, "We don't need a War".

"A small body of determined spirits fired by an unquenchable faith in their mission can alter the course of history."

 -Mahatma Gandhi

He won hearts of many but not all. It is said that father of the nation wasn't a very good father to his sons. Harilal Mohandas Gandhi was the first son of Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi to survive childhood. I discovered that Mahatma, the man who I till now considered infallible, was also human, after all. He did have his share of foibles. Harilal's words sum up his predicament.

"He (Mahatma Gandhi) is the greatest father you can have... but he is the one father I wish I did not have. "

When Gandhi Senior was busy bringing down the British rule and ascending the stairs of greatness, his frustrated son slips into debauchery, cracks dubious business deals, converts to various religions and heads towards a tragic end.
Was Gandhi senior to be blamed for sacrificing his son on the altar of his inflexible and lofty principles?

On 30 January 1948, Gandhi was shot while he was walking to a platform from which he was to address a prayer meeting. The assassin,Nathuram Godse, was a Hindu nationalist with links to the extremistHindu Mahasabha, who held Gandhi responsible for weakening India by insisting upon a payment to Pakistan. In lieu of strengthening Pakistan was he sacrificing his own nation’s prosperity?

"Friends and comrades, the light has gone out of our lives, and there is darkness everywhere, and I do not quite know what to tell you or how to say it. Our beloved leader, Bapu as we called him, the father of the nation, is no more. Perhaps I am wrong to say that; nevertheless, we will not see him again, as we have seen him for these many years, we will not run to him for advice or seek solace from him, and that is a terrible blow, not only for me, but for millions and millions in this country."
– Jawaharlal Nehru's address to Gandhi

Happy Gandhi Jayanti!

Gandhi An Autobiography: The Story of My Experiments With TruthThe Essential Gandhi: An Anthology of His Writings on His Life, Work, and IdeasPeace: The Words and Inspiration of Mahatma Gandhi (Me-We)Gandhi An Autobiography: The Story of My Experiments With Truth

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