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Remembering Gandhi

Story ID:4033
Written by:Suzana Margaret Megles (bio, contact, other stories)
Story type:Biography
Location:various various India
Year:1940
Person:Mahatma Gandhi
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I think anyone who saw the movie about Gandhi can't but help to love
and admire this man. Two memories come to mind immediately recalling
the movie and though perhaps not entirely accurate --I see him pushing
his wife to clean toilets and she is resisting when he suddenly realizes
that he has been ascribing subservient roles to her and this was
wrong. He would later on even take on the role of weaver to demonstrate
that there are no unimportant tasks and none beneath man.

The other scene which comes to me is his march toward the sea to
harvest its salt because England had placed a prohibitive tax on it for
the people of India to absorb. To me at first it seemed like such an absurd
march until I realized that he was making a statement and the
people of India understood it. A peaceful demonstration will always
benefit and produce better results than killing and murderous uprisings.
At least that is my take on this happening.

I loved him also for his wonderous reflection on animals. He said that
a nation can always be judged by the way it treats its animals. Sadly,
I don't know of any nation that is treating its animals well. Maybe Sweden
comes closer than an other nation because of its laws re the treatment
of farm animals inspired by that wonderful compassionate writer -
Astrid Lundgren. She wrote the beloved story of Pippi Longstocking and
also wrote "I Had a Dream" where she takes God through the horrors of the
pig factories of Sweden. It is said that her writings were instrumental
in bringing compassionate changes to the condition of the farm animals.

And I was so happy to find a now faded Ann Lander's article I had cut out
of the newspaper - God knows when. The caption read "Listen to Gandhi's
wisdom." The writer asked Ann to find the list of the seven most grievous
sins which he said President Carter had mentioned in the eulogy to Sen. Hubert
H. Humphrey.

In her column she wrote; "I was among those present at the services in St.
Paul, and was also deeply moved by the eulogies. I, too, wanted a copy of the
quotation from Mahatma Gandhi. I manged to get it. Here it is:

"Mahatma Gandhi once wrote that there were seven sins in the world:
WEALTH without work,
PLEASURE without conscience,
KNOWLEDGE without character,
COMMERCE without morality,
SCIENCE without humanity,
WORSHIP without sacrifice and
POLITICS without principle."

What a wonderful measuring stick for all of us to use. As a country and as a people
I'm sorry to say that we probably fall short.