Today Running Wolf’s Rant is featuring quotes by Mahatma Gandhi, an Indian political and spiritual leader. He was born as Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi on the 2nd of October 1869 (140 yrs ago today) in Porbandar (present day Gujarati) in British occupied India. He is commonly referred to as Mahatma Gandhi . He was the pre-eminent political and spiritual leader of India during the Indian independence movement. Mahatma Gandhi is honoured in India as the “Father of the Nation”.
The 2nd October is commemorated in India as Gandhi Jayanti (a national holiday). The 2nd of October is also regarded worldwide as the International Day of Non-Violence. In April 1893 Mahatma Gandhi accepted a year-long contract from an Indian lawfirm for a post in the Colony of Natal, South Africa (which was still part of the British Empire back then). In South Africa Gandhi faced discrimination directed at Indians. He was thrown off a train at Pietermaritzburg after refusing to move from the first class to a third class coach while holding a valid first class ticket. He traveled further via stagecoach and was beaten by the driver for refusing to travel on the footboard to make space for a European passenger. He was also banned from several hotels whilst on his journey. This and a other incidents in South Africa awoke him to social injustice. This also influenced his subsequent social activism. He witnessed racism, prejudice and injustice against Indians in South Africa. Gandhi started questioning his people’s status within the British Empire and his own place in society. He returned to India in 1915. Mahatma Gandhi is regarded internationally as the pioneer of satyagraha or resistance to tyranny through mass civil disobedience founded upon ahimsa or total non-violence. In his lifetime Gandhi 5 failed assassination attempts. On 30 January 1948 he was assassinated at Gandhi Smriti (Birla House). The 30th January is observed as Martyr’s Day in India. India declared independence in 1947 from Great Britain. Gandhi’s life story was made into a movie in 1982 entitled Gandhi. He was played by British actor Ben Kingsley.
Here are a few quotes by Mahatma Gandhi:
“I think it would be a good idea.” (When asked about Western Civilization)
“Victory attained by violence is tantamount to a defeat, for it is momentary.”
“What difference does it make to the dead, the orphans and the homeless, whether the mad destruction is wrought under the name of totalitarianism or the holy name of liberty or democracy?”
“You must be the change you want to see in the world.”
“Whatever you do will be insignificant, but it is very important that you do it.”
“The weak can never forgive. Forgiveness is the attribute of the strong.”
“One needs to be slow to form convictions, but once formed they must be defended against the heaviest odds.”
“In the attitude of silence the soul finds the path in a clearer light, and what is elusive and deceptive resolves itself into crystal clearness. Our life is a long and arduous quest after Truth.”
“I cannot teach you violence, as I do not myself believe in it. I can only teach you not to bow your heads before any one even at the cost of your life.”
“Honest differences are often a healthy sign of progress.”
“Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do are in harmony.”
“As long as you derive inner help and comfort from anything, keep it.”