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Mahatma Gandhi was born on the 2nd October 1869. He was born in the town of Porbandar, where he spent his childhood. He was the son of Karamchand Gandhi who was the chief minister of Porbandar and Putliba Karamchad’s was his fourth wife. At the age of 13 Gandhi married Kasturba, they then had 4 children Manilal, Ramdas, Devdas and Harilal Gandhi.
In the first part of my project I will talk about Mahatma Gandhi’s philosophy of life.
Mahatma is a great seeker of truth. He says that to find truth is to realize oneself and one’s density (to become perfect). He says he is not a perfect man, but if he were he wouldn’t just watch the miseries of his friends family and citizens and do nothing but watch them and try and help them through their miseries. This is what Gandhi did all through his life although he couldn’t help every one he tried his hardest to. That is what he would have to do in order for him to be a perfect man.
He feels he always has to trust in God, he feels that if he did not trust in God he would be like Timon, a hater of his species. He says he would never be a traitor to God to please the world but whatever good things he has done in life he has done them by instinct for God not because someone has told him to. Gandhi would defiantly do anything for God even die for him.
Gandhi feels strongly about having no secrecy in his teachings. He says he has no secret methods and has no weapons but non-violence. He has no secrets in his life, he quotes, “My life has been an open book.” Gandhi thinks that if he did have secrets in his life he wouldn’t be being truthful to himself, the world and to God, which would be betraying one of his main teachings, truth.
He follows the gospel of self-sacrifice he says that whether you belong to the school of non-violence or violence you will still have to endure sacrifice and discipline.
He believes to never feel defeated. He says that whenever he is defeated it does not weaken him just strengthens him and he always knows that God will guide him. Mahatma is a strong optimist he quotes, “Even in the darkest hours hope has always brightened me.”
Mahatma believes in trust, he says he has often been let down by even people close to him. He says that many have deceived him but he does not anger towards them or wish he had never met them. He believes in trusting because there is no points in being suspicious when you cant predict the future. Mahatma has never broken a promise, which shows his true belief in trust.
After WWI Gandhi became involved in the Indian National Congress and the movement for Indian independence. He protested and was imprisoned by British authorities for example was jailed for six years in 1922 but only served 2 years because of how good he was. On May 8 1933 Gandhi began a fast for 21 days to protest against British Oppressors.
In WWII Gandhi became more set on speaking for independence in India. He drafted a resolution for the British to leave India. This sparked a massive movement for India and led to mass arrests by the British authorities. Gandhi and his supporters told the English that they would not help them in the war unless they got out of their country. The British listened and gave the Indians independence. Gandhi was praised all over India for what he had done for the country. He also wanted to make a complete stop to the violence with British and was arrested by them on August 9th 1942.
Gandhi was very involved with the Hindu and Muslim communities of India he ended communal riots just because he was there. He was firmly against any plans to make India a partition (make India into practically 2 countries because of the different beliefs. Although he was against the plan it was eventually taken up where the country was separated up into Hindu India and Muslim Pakistan. When power was transferred Gandhi, instead of celebrating partition went alone to Calcutta to mourn the partition.
In New Delhi on January 30th 1948 Mahatma Gandhi was assassinated by Naturam Godse a Hindu radical who accused Gandhi of wakening the government by insisting payments to Pakistan.
The Bhagavad Gita, Hindu beliefs and the practiced religion Jain had influenced Gandhi’s philosophy of satya and ashima. Ashima is the practice of non-violence. When it came to his riots he wasn’t running around throwing bottles at people but sitting in peace sitting out the protest without laying a violent finger on anybody.
Gandhi was a vegetarian and had written books on vegetarians and what they should eat. He regularly met up with Henry salts a campaigner at meetings of the vegetarian society. He experimented with diets, which he said should be enough to satisfy the minimum bodily needs of a human. He also stopped taking foods for periods of time and used fasting as a political weapon. He also once spent a week without talking; he believed silence brought peace to his land.
When he got back to India after a lawyer career in South Africa, he gave up his clothes and lived like a proper poor person. He made all of his clothes by him self on a spinning wheel. His followers also practiced spinning their clothes on a wheel.
Gandhi did not believe in conventional teachings in school he believed that children should learn in society not in schools. Later mahatma formed a teaching group for children teaching society, as he knows it.
There is a film called Gandhi, which follows his 21 years of life in South Africa dealing with all the poverty and always getting more followers.
Mahatma never received the Nobel peace prize although he was nominated 5 times for it when he looked like he was most likely to win it the last time he was withdrawn from the award because he was arrested and they couldn’t nominate a criminal for the prize. Later though the Nobel committee regretted that they had omitted Mahatma out of the winnings.
Mahatmas most famous quote reads, “I will give you a Talisman. Whenever you are in doubt, or when the self becomes too much for you, apply the following test. Recall the face of the poorest and the weakest man [Woman] whom you may have seen, and ask yourself, if the step you contemplate is going to be any use to him or her. Will she or he gain anything by it? Will it restore him or her to a control over his or hers own life and destiny? In other words, will it lead to swaraj [freedom] for the hungry and spiritually starving millions?
Then you will find you doubts and yourself melt away” This quote was one of the last ever made by Gandhi. It expresses his deepest social thoughts and shows what he really thinks of life.
Mahatma greatest strength was the strength of non-violence. Whenever he was confronted with a threatening situation he would not strike out or hit anybody he would resolve the issue by talking peacefully and not harming anybody. He also doesn’t boast or gloat about himself. He says a few times that he is not perfect at all and there are many imperfections in him even though he was the one that brought independence to India and is the one loved so much by all the Indian people.
Gandhi’s second greatest belief is truth. In his whole lifetime he has never told a lie. Always when people promise him he always agrees, and never is suspicious of what they have just said. He beliefs in God and every thing good that he has done in his life he has done for God.
My opinion is that Mahatma Gandhi was a great man. I think he has been one of the most important people in Indian history and more importantly is known for his great doings all around the world. I believe his life would have been a hard life to live. He travelled all around the world helping the poor and praying to God. He spent a lot of his life in prison also because of the way he protested and tried to get the British occupiers out of India. He was assassinated because he was hated for what he had done. The assassin believed that Gandhi had done wrong for the world and that he had to be dealt with before he did anything else to the country. In no way could Gandhi physically hurt someone because of his belief in non-violence but he could make them think about what they are doing. That’s how he scared all of the people. They had never seen anybody like this before who could make people listen and believe what he said.
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