Dear Bapu, You Inspires Me

Dear Bapu, you are also known as Mohan Das Karam Chand Gandhi popularly known as “Bapu”, The Father of Nation. You have been a  prophet of change, a role model, a mentor and a messiah of millennium whose teachings and preachings have not only won hearts in India but also got acclamation from the global community, and I may not be an exception to this.

Whenever I read about your dreams, your teachings your way of preaching things, your method of pacification and tolerance let you know that how much inspiration and commitment I really get from your noble teachings towards the realization of my dreams. In your autobiographical book My Experiment With Truth , you dreamt that, "I remember to have read, I forget whether in the Delhi Fort or the Agra Fort when I visited them in 1896, a verse on one of the gates which when translated reads: if there is a paradise on earth, it is here,  it is here, it is here." That fort with all its magnificence. In such a paradise, whether it is in the union or in Pakistan, there will be neither paupers nor beggars nor high nor low neither millionaire employers nor half-starved employees, nor intoxicating drinks or drugs. There will be the same respect for women as vouchsafed to men and the chastity and purity of men and women will be jealously guarded. Where every woman except one’s wife, will be treated by men of all religions, as mother sister or daughter according to her age.where there will be no untouchability and where there will be equal respect for all faiths. They will be all proudly, joyously and voluntarily bread laborers, I hope everyone who listens to me or reads these lines will forgive me, if stretched on my bed and basking in the sun, inhaling life-giving sunshine allow myself to indulge in this ecstasy”.

Dear Bapu, in your writings you stressed for tolerance, love, affection, compassion, brotherhood and peace. Your views on peace are heart touching and worth mentioning. You said that the ultimate purpose of the entire human race is to lead a perfect ideal life i.e.’a life in peace’.In other words, global peace is the supreme ideal which the entire mankind is striving for. But unfortunately this peace is getting squeezed day by day and ultimately getting replaced by conflicts all around in different guises at different levels. The conflictual situations are getting showcased through a number of phenomenon like terrorism, population explosion, human rights violations, environmental degradation, ideological differences, religious intolerance, poverty so and so forth. There are a variety of reasons for these problems. But in fact, violence has always been glorified as the supreme solution to the conflictual situations. Dear Bapu your approach of non-violence is assuming relevance day by day and I hope that one day the whole world must adopt your philosophy to answer the global crisis of human values. You rightly quoted that ”an eye for an eye only ends of making the whole world blind” and moreover James Van, agreed that violence begets violence, and you cannot solve issues with more violence.

For me, you are a moral social scientist who has not only made an attempt to diagnose the basic cause behind disorders and conflicts in the contemporary societies but also provided us the measures for conflict resolution through your own philosophy of peace. This philosophy of peace finds its reflection in Gandhian Philosophy of non-violence. Your philosophy of non- violence is based upon the unbound faith and firm conviction that violence is not the valid means of solving any problem and more so non-violent solutions tend to be more permanent and long-lasting than violent solutions.

Dear Bapu, the world has experienced the ‘war on terror’ by using violent methods to eradicate the roots of terror. We have also seen the results in terms of thousands of deaths of children, women, men, old and sick people, property worth of millions destroyed but whether preachers of violence are successful in combating terrorism or not, is still being debated.

Dear Bapu, I believe one day the whole world will believe and understand that non-violence is the most effective, positive and powerful conflict redressal mechanism which does not rely upon the major material or technological tools but aims to tap the best of the human resources available. Your school of Satyagraha is an ideal combination of knowledge and action. You rightly said that ” the world rests on the bedrock of Satyagraha and you have also opined Satyagraha in Indian Opinion and young India.

The truth forms the basis of this non- violent strategy therefore not only excludes violence but also is fueled by the force which is not external but internal spiritual force. As it is the higher duty and moreover a well known saying from Mahabharata.The practical dimensions of non-violence in South Africa, the Champaran Satyagraha of 1917, Ahmedabad mill issue and Salt Satyagraha of 1930 are highlighting aspects of non-violence.

Dear Bapu, your holistic vision of life and doctrine of ‘swaraj’ appeared for the first time in November 1905 in your writings provides me the roots for realization and fulfillment of all the rights of man be it political moral social or economic. The real ‘swaraj’ for Gandhi meant the promotion of the interest of all the downtrodden starving millions. It did not simply free a nation from the shackles of foreign oppressors. You said ‘’the ‘swaraj’ of my dream recognizes no race or religious distinctions. Nor is it to be the monopoly of lettered persons nor yet of moneyed men’’.’Swaraj ‘ is to be for all including the farmer, but emphatically including the maimed, the blind, the starving toiling millions. A stout-hearted honest, sane, illiterate man may well be the first servant of the nation.

Your global acclamation can be understood that many international organizations have declared you a “man of the millennium “and even UN has declared your birth anniversary that is 2 October 2 as International Day of Non-Violence.

About the author: Hamid Hashmi is a student of The Law School, University of Jammu.

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