Difference between revisions of "Satyagraha"

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'''Satyagraha''' [Skt.]: pressure for social and political reform through cheerful nonviolent resistance practiced by Mohandas K. Gandhi and his followers. As he defined it: “Truth (''satya'') implies love, and firmness (''agraha'') engenders and therefore serves as a synonym for force ... that is to say, the force which is born of truth and love or nonviolence.<ref>M.K. Gandhi, ''Satyagraha in South Africa'', Navajivan, Ahmedabad, 1111, pp. 109–10.</ref>
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[[File:820px-Mahatma-Gandhi, studio, 1931.jpg|thumb|Studio photograph of Mohandas K. Gandhi, London, 1931]]
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'''Satyagraha''' [Skt.]: pressure for social and political reform through cheerful nonviolent resistance practiced by Mohandas K. Gandhi and his followers. As he defined it:
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<blockquote>Truth (''satya'') implies love, and firmness (''agraha'') engenders and therefore serves as a synonym for force ... that is to say, the force which is born of truth and love or nonviolence.<ref>M. K. Gandhi, ''Satyagraha in South Africa'' (Ahmedabad, India: Navajivan Trust, 1968), p. 107.</ref></blockquote>
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Gandhi wrote:
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<blockquote>The beauty of this method is that it comes up to oneself; one has not to go out in search for it.... God Himself plans the campaign and conducts battles. It can be waged only in the name of God.... Only when the combatant finds utter darkness all around him, only then God comes to the rescue.<ref>C. F. Andrews, Mahatma Gandhi at Work (New York: Macmillan, 1931), pp. 7, 8.</ref></blockquote>
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Gandhi knew that [[Jesus Christ]] had been called the original passive resister, but he saw him as the original Satyagrahi.
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Critics of Gandhi call his philosophy masochistic because people sustained beatings without resisting in the Satyagraha campaigns. Yet how many more die in war without any sense of self-esteem, without having taken a stand for a moral principle or made the ultimate sacrifice for the cause of Truth. Satyagraha is the strategy of a mastermind who knew the enemy well yet held the salvation and soul integrity of his followers as paramount.
  
 
== Sources ==
 
== Sources ==

Latest revision as of 18:52, 12 July 2019

Studio photograph of Mohandas K. Gandhi, London, 1931

Satyagraha [Skt.]: pressure for social and political reform through cheerful nonviolent resistance practiced by Mohandas K. Gandhi and his followers. As he defined it:

Truth (satya) implies love, and firmness (agraha) engenders and therefore serves as a synonym for force ... that is to say, the force which is born of truth and love or nonviolence.[1]

Gandhi wrote:

The beauty of this method is that it comes up to oneself; one has not to go out in search for it.... God Himself plans the campaign and conducts battles. It can be waged only in the name of God.... Only when the combatant finds utter darkness all around him, only then God comes to the rescue.[2]

Gandhi knew that Jesus Christ had been called the original passive resister, but he saw him as the original Satyagrahi.

Critics of Gandhi call his philosophy masochistic because people sustained beatings without resisting in the Satyagraha campaigns. Yet how many more die in war without any sense of self-esteem, without having taken a stand for a moral principle or made the ultimate sacrifice for the cause of Truth. Satyagraha is the strategy of a mastermind who knew the enemy well yet held the salvation and soul integrity of his followers as paramount.

Sources

Pearls of Wisdom, vol. 28, no. 24, June 16, 1985.

  1. M. K. Gandhi, Satyagraha in South Africa (Ahmedabad, India: Navajivan Trust, 1968), p. 107.
  2. C. F. Andrews, Mahatma Gandhi at Work (New York: Macmillan, 1931), pp. 7, 8.