15TH, AUGUST, 2011
“Long years ago, we made a tryst with destiny and now the time comes when we shall redeem our pledge... At the stroke of the midnight hour, when the world sleeps, India will awake to life and freedom.” – said Jawaharlal Nehru, on the eve of Indian Independence
The Nobel Laureate Poet, Rabindra Nath Tagore sang of our independence as follows:
“Where the mind is without fear and the head is held high;
Where knowledge is free;
Where the world has not been broken up into fragments by domestic walls;
Where words come out from the depth of truth;
Where tireless striving stretches its arms towards perfection;
Where the clear stream of reason has not lost its way into the dreary desert sand of dead habit;
Where the mind is led forward by thee into ever-widening thought and action--
Into that heaven of freedom, my father, let my country awake.”
Let’s see what Mahatma Gandhi says on many matters that are of current interest to all of us :
Ø A small body of determined spirits fired by an unquenchable faith in their mission can alter the course of history.
Ø All compromise is based on give and take, but there can be no give and take on fundamentals. Any compromise on mere fundamentals is a surrender. For it is all give and no take.
Ø Anger and intolerance are the enemies of correct understanding.
Ø Freedom is not worth having if it does not connote freedom to err. It passes my comprehension how human beings, be they ever so experienced and able, can delight in depriving other human beings of that precious right.
Ø Whatever you do will be insignificant, but it is very important that you do it.
Ø Strength does not come from physical capacity. It comes from an indomitable will.
Ø To safeguard democracy the people must have a keen sense of independence, self-respect, and their oneness.
Ø One of the objects of a newspaper is to understand popular feeling and to give expression to it, another is to arouse among the people certain desirable sentiments, and the third is fearlessly to expose popular defects.
Ø The weak can never forgive. Forgiveness is the attribute of the strong.
Ø Religions are different roads converging to the same point. What does it matter that we take different road, so long as we reach the same goal. Wherein is the cause for quarrelling?
Ø Victory attained by violence is tantamount to a defeat, for it is momentary.
Ø I wanted to know the best of the life of one (Muhammad) who holds today an undisputed sway over the hearts of millions of mankind. I became more than ever convinced that it was not the sword that won a place for Islam in those days in the scheme of life. It was the rigid simplicity, the utter self-effacement of the Prophet ,the scrupulous regard for pledges, his intense devotion to his friends and followers, his intrepidity, his fearlessness, his absolute trust in God and in his own mission. These and not the sword carried everything before them and surmounted every obstacle
Ø Seven social sins: politics without principles, wealth without work, pleasure without conscience, knowledge without character, commerce without morality, science without humanity, and worship without sacrifice.
Ø I’m a lover of my own liberty, and so I would do nothing to restrict yours.
Ø I came to the conclusion long ago … that all religions were true and also that all had some error in them, and whilst I hold by my own, I should hold others as dear as Hinduism. So we can only pray, if we are Hindus, not that a Christian should become a Hindu … But our innermost prayer should be a Hindu should be a better Hindu, a Muslim a better Muslim, a Christian a better Christian.
Ø To call woman the weaker sex is a libel; it is man's injustice to woman. If by strength is meant brute strength, then, indeed, is woman less brute than man. If by strength is meant moral power, then woman is immeasurably man's superior. Has she not greater intuition, is she not more self-sacrificing, has she not greater powers of endurance, has she not greater courage? Without her, man could not be. If nonviolence is the law of our being, the future is with woman. Who can make a more effective appeal to the heart than woman?
Ø In the dictionary of Satyagraha, there is no enemy.
Ø Poverty is the worst kind of violence.
Ø We need to be the change we wish to see in the world
Ø A good person will resist an evil system with his whole soul. Disobedience of the laws of an evil state is therefore a duty.
Ø I believe that the civilization India evolved is not to be beaten in the world. Nothing can equal the seeds sown by our ancestors, Rome went, Greece shared the same fate; the might of the Pharaohs was broken; Japan has become Westernized; of China nothing can be said; but India is still, somehow or other, sound at the foundation. The people of Europe learn their lessons from the writings of the men of Greece or Rome, which exist no longer in their former glory. In trying to learn from them, the Europeans imagine that they will avoid the mistakes of Greece and Rome. Such is their pitiable condition. In the midst of all this India remains immovable and that is her glory. It is a charge against India that her people are so uncivilized, ignorant and stolid, that it is not possible to induce them to adopt any changes. It is a charge really against our merit. What we have tested and found true on the anvil of experience, we dare not change. Many thrust their advice upon India, and she remains steady. This is her beauty: it is the sheet-anchor of our hope.
Ø Today I know that physical training should have as much place in the curriculum as mental training
Let us also see a few Quotations on M.K.Gandhi- by other illustrious persons:
Ø It is alarming and also nauseating to see Mr. Gandhi, a seditious middle temple lawyer, now posing as a fakir of a type well known in the east, striding half-naked up the steps of the viceregal palace, while he is still organizing and conducting a defiant campaign of civil disobedience, to parley on equal terms with the representative of the king-emperor. - Winston Churchill
Ø Mr. Gandhi has gone very high in my esteem since he stood up for the untouchables ... - Winston Churchill, in a letter to G.D. Birla
Ø Taken on the whole, I would believe that Gandhi's views were the most enlightened of all the political men of our time. We should strive to do things in his spirit: not to use violence for fighting for our cause, but by non-participation of anything you believe is evil. - Albert Einstein
Ø Generations to come, it may well be, will scarce believe that such a man as this one ever in flesh and blood walked upon this Earth. - Albert Einstein
Ø I am mindful that I might not be standing before you today, as President of the United States, had it not been for Gandhi and the message he shared with America and the world. - Barack Obama in an address to a Joint Session of the Parliament of India
Let us also look at what some of our Great National leaders say on Indian Independence – and on problems of Independent India :
Ø Crises and deadlocks when they occur have at least this advantage, that they force us to think. - Jawaharlal Nehru
Ø Democracy is good. I say this because other systems are worse. - Jawaharlal Nehru
Ø Ignorance is always afraid of change.- Jawaharlal Nehru
Ø Let us be a little humble; let us think that the truth may not perhaps be entirely with us. - Jawaharlal Nehru
Ø The only alternative to coexistence is codestruction. - Jawaharlal Nehru
Ø There is perhaps nothing so bad and so dangerous in life as fear.- Jawaharlal Nehru
Ø If you ask me, my ideal would be the society based on liberty, equality and fraternity. An ideal society should be mobile and full of channels of conveying a change taking place in one part to other parts. –Dr.B.R.Ambedkar
Ø So long as you do not achieve social liberty, whatever freedom is provided by the law is of no avail to you.- Dr.B.R.Ambedkar
Ø Every Indian should now ...forget that he is a Rajput, a Sikh or a Jat.-Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel
Ø He must remember that ...he is an Indian and he has every right in this country but with certain ...duties. - Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel
Ø Freedom is not given, it is taken - Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose
Ø As soldiers, you will always have to cherish and live up to the three ideals of faithfulness, duty and sacrifice. Soldiers who always remain faithful to their nation, who are always prepared to sacrifice their lives, are invincible. If you, too, want to be invincible, engrave these three ideals in the innermost core of your hearts.- Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose
Ø Swaraj is my birthright, and I shall have it! - Lok Manya B.G.Tilak
Ø We shall not look at caste or religion, All human beings in this land — whether they be those who preach the vedas or who belong to other castes — are one.- Mahakavi subramanya bharathi
Ø All are kings of this land…..there are no castes… - Mahakavi subramanya bharathi
We will also see some Opinions of world leaders on India:
Ø We owe a lot to the Indians, who taught us how to count, without which no worthwhile scientific discovery could have been made! - Albert Einstein
Ø If there is one place on the face of earth where all the dreams of living men have found a home from the very earliest days when man began the dream of existence, it is India! - Romaine Rolland, French scholar
Ø India is the cradle of the human race, the birthplace of human speech, the mother of history, the grandmother of legend, and the great grand mother of tradition. Our most valuable and most astrictive materials in the history of man are treasured up in India only! - Mark Twain
Ø So far as I am able to judge, nothing has been left undone, either by man or nature, to make India the most extraordinary country that the sun visits on his rounds. Nothing seems to have been forgotten, nothing overlooked. - Mark Twain
Ø If I were asked under what sky the human mind has most fully developed some of its choicest gifts, has most deeply pondered on the greatest problems of life, and has found solutions, I should point to India. - Max Mueller, German scholar
Ø When I read the Bhagavad-Gita and reflect about how God created this universe everything else seems so superfluous. - Albert Einstein
Ø India was the motherland of our race, and Sanskrit the mother of Europe's languages: she was the mother of our philosophy; mother, through the Arabs, of much of our mathematics; mother, through the Buddha, of the ideals embodied in Christianity; mother, through the village community, of self-government and democracy. Mother India is in many ways the mother of us all. - Will Durant, American historian
Now – some Thoughts on Independence from great men :
Ø Solitude is independence. - Hermann Hesse (German born Swiss Novelist and Poet. Won the Nobel Prize for Literature)
Ø Independence? That's middle class blasphemy. We are all dependent on one another, every soul of us on earth.- George Bernard Shaw quotes (Irish literary Critic, Playwright and Essayist. 1925 Nobel Prize for Literature)
Ø As long as you keep a person down, some part of you has to be down there to hold him down, so it means you cannot soar as you otherwise might.- Marian Anderson (American Singer,1902-1993)
Ø You cannot build character and courage by taking away man's initiative and independence. - Abraham Lincoln
Ø Injustice in the end produces independence. – Voltaire
Ø Even as people take pride in their national independence, we know we are becoming more and more interdependent. - Bill Clinton
Ø In the truest sense, freedom cannot be bestowed; it must be won..- Franklin D. Roosevelt
Ø Liberty is the breath of life to nations.- Bernard Shaw
Ø Those who deny freedom to others deserve it not for themselves..- Abraham Lincoln
Ø In the progress of personality, first comes a declaration of independence, then a recognition of interdependence. - Henry Van Dyke
Ø Nature has never read the Declaration of Independence. It continues to make us unequal. - Will Durant
* * * JAI HIND * * *