Mahatma gandhi :The great scientist Albert Einstein had said about Gandhi ji that “future generations will find it difficult to believe that such a carcass was ever used on earth.” Gandhi’s ideas around the world Motivated people not only, but also played an important role in changing India and the world from the perspective of compassion, tolerance and peace. He insisted on developing principles and practices throughout his life, and also made an outstanding contribution to raising the voice of marginalized groups and oppressed communities around the world. Mahatma Gandhi also inspired the world’s big moral and political leaders like Martin Luther King Jr., Nelson Mandela and the Dalai Lama etc. and influenced social and political movements in Latin America, Asia, Middle East and Europe.
Mahatma Gandhi – Introduction
Gandhi was born on 2 October 1869 in the princely state of Porbandar. His father, Karamchand Gandhi, was the Diwan of the princely state of Porbandar and his mother’s name was Putlibai. Gandhiji was the fourth child of his parents. At the age of just 13, Gandhiji was married to Kasturba Kapadia. Gandhiji received his early education from Rajkot and later he went to London to study law. It is noteworthy that a friend of his introduced him to the Bhagavad Gita in London itself and its influence is clearly seen on Gandhiji’s other activities. When Gandhi returned to India after studying law, he faced a lot of difficulty in getting a job as a lawyer. In the year 1893, Dada Abdullah (a businessman who had a shipping trade in South Africa) invited Gandhi to contest the case in South Africa, which Gandhi accepted and Gandhi left for South Africa. It is known that this decision of Gandhiji greatly influenced his political life.
Mahatma Gandhi in South Africa
In South Africa, Gandhi felt racial discrimination against blacks and Indians. He faced humiliation on several occasions due to which he decided to fight racial discrimination. At that time Indians and blacks in South Africa did not have the right to vote and even walked on the pavement, Gandhi strongly opposed it and finally in 1894 succeeded in establishing an organization called ‘Natal Indian Congress’. After returning to South Africa for 21 years, he returned to India in 1915.
Gandhiji’s arrival in India
Gandhi had gained a reputation as a nationalist, theorist and organizer for his long stay in South Africa and his activism against the racist policy of the British. Senior leader of the Indian National Congress Gopal Krishna Gokhale invited Gandhi to join India’s struggle for independence against British rule. In 1915, Gandhi came to India and visited every village in the country to formulate a strategy for the freedom struggle.
Gandhi and Satyagraha
Gandhiji gave the name of ‘Satyagraha’ to his entire non-violent practice. Satyagraha for him meant using pure self-power against all kinds of injustice, tyranny and exploitation. Gandhiji said that anyone can adopt Satyagraha, in his views, Satyagraha was like a banyan tree which has innumerable branches. The Champaran and Bardoli Satyagrahs were not done by Gandhiji only to gain material benefits for the people, but to protest the unjust attitude of the then British rule. The Civil Disobedience Movement, the Dandi Satyagraha and the Quit India Movement were the prime examples in which Gandhiji used self-power as a weapon of satyagraha.
How relevant is satyagraha at present?
The Satyagraha of Mahatma Gandhi can be seen as a moral alternative to war. He taught the common man how satyagraha is used to solve problems and conflicts. Gandhi’s Satyagraha has proved to be an effective tool for redressing political issues. Many of the contemporary challenges related to war and peace, terrorism, human rights, sustainable development, climate change, socio-political unrest and political-administrative corruption can be solved in a Gandhian way. Therefore, people of the 21st century still have much to learn from Gandhism.
Gandhian Perspectives on Education
Gandhiji was a great educationist, he believed that social, moral and economic progress of a country ultimately depends on education. In his opinion the highest objective of education is self-assessment. According to him, character building is the most important for the students and it is not possible in the absence of proper education.
Gandhiji’s education concept
Gandhiji’s education concept is also known as Basic Education. He emphasized the inclusion of moral and religious education in the curriculum of schools and colleges. Gandhiji stated the following objectives of the concept of education:
- Build a good character
- All round development
It is known that Gandhiji was born in a Hindu family and since his father was a diwan, he also got a lot of opportunity to meet people of other religions, he had many Christian and Muslim friends. At the same time, Gandhiji was also heavily influenced by Jainism in his youth. Many analysts believe that Gandhiji took inspiration from the prevailing principle of Jainism ‘Ahimsa’ for the concept of ‘Satyagraha’.
Gandhiji referred to ‘God’ as ‘truth’. He said that “I am not a stereotype.” He used to observe all religions of the world strictly on the test of truth and nonviolence, he would reject whatever was not fit in it and he who accepted it would accept it Were. According to Gandhiji, we have reduced his reputation by making religion only a matter of food. They wanted people of all religions to respect their religion as well as texts of other religions and their followers.
The relevance of Gandhi and his ideas in the present times
Gandhi’s contribution to India’s freedom struggle cannot be denied. His concept of non-violence not only helped India get freedom but through this the world got another weapon to deal with exploitation and tyranny. However, today is a time when most people are denying the need of Gandhi and his ideas and their relevance is being questioned at the present time. Today Gandhiji is remembered only on the day of 2 October. Today, efforts are being made to address all kinds of interests with the help of violence by keeping Gandhi’s thoughts on hold.
Knowing that Gandhi’s ideas are most relevant at a time when people are trying to find solutions to greed, rampant violence and runaway lifestyles. Gandhiji’s concept of non-violence and satyagraha is most needed today, because this is the time when anyone is murdered in the name of mere vengeance and his critics are considered nothing more than enemies. The Gandhian technique of mobilizing people has been successfully employed by many oppressed societies around the world, led by people such as Martin Luther King in the United States, Nelson Mandela in South Africa, and now Aung San Suu Kyi in Myanmar. ‘S testimony that Gandhi and his views are still relevant today.
If words such as globalization, free markets, privatization and liberalization are necessary to define the 21st century, then it is also essential that terms such as violence, extremism, inequality, poverty and inequality are not ignored. Even in the presence of violence, extremism, inequality, poverty and inequality, etc. If one questions the relevance of Gandhi and his ideas, perhaps there is some ambiguity in the person’s understanding of Gandhi’s ideas. In democracy, it is everyone’s right to criticize, but before criticizing it is also necessary that we read about that person well and criticize him on the basis of logic.
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