Just as a man would not cherish living in a body other than his own, so do nations not like to live under other nations, however noble and great the latter may be. Increase of material comforts, it may be generally laid down, does not in any way whatsoever conduce to moral growth. Whenever you are confronted with an opponent. Conquer him with love. Relationships are based on four principles: respect , understanding, acceptance and appreciation. If your heart acquires strength, you will be able to remove blemishes from others without thinking evil of them.
Whether humanity will consciously follow the law of love, I do not know. But that need not disturb me. The law will work just as the law of gravitation works, whether we accept it or not. The person who discovered the law of love was a far greater scientist than any of our modern scientists. A man who was completely innocent, offered himself as a sacrifice for the good of others, including his enemies, and became the ransom of the world.
It was a perfect act. Hatred ever kills, love never dies. Such is the vast difference between the two. What is obtained by love is retained for all time. What is obtained by hatred proves a burden in reality for it increases hatred. Forgiveness is choosing to love. It is the first skill of self-giving love. I believe that the sum total of the energy of mankind is not to bring us down but to lift us up, and that is the result of the definite, if unconscious, working of the law of love.
Let the first act of every morning be to make the following resolve for the day: I shall not fear anyone on Earth. I shall fear only God. I shall not bear ill will toward anyone. I shall not submit to injustice from anyone. I shall conquer untruth by truth. And in resisting untruth, I shall put up with all suffering. I claim that human mind or human society is not divided into watertight compartments called social, political and religious. All act and react upon one another.
Power is of two kinds. One is obtained by the fear of punishment and the other by acts of love. Power based on love is a thousand times more effective and permanent then the one derived from fear of punishment. Interdependence is and ought to be as much the ideal of man as self-sufficiency. Man is a social being.
I look only to the good qualities of men. Civilization is the encouragement of differences. America aims at having a car for every citizen. I do not. Always aim at complete harmony of thought and word and deed. Always aim at purifying your thoughts and everything will be well. Constant development is the law of life, and a man who always tries to maintain his dogmas in order to appear consistent drives himself into a false position. The less you possess , the less you want, the better you are. And better for what? Not for enjoyment of this life, but for enjoyment of personal service to the fellow-beings; service which you dedicate yourself, body, soul and mind.
You have to do the right thing. Part 3. You may never know what results come from your action. There is really no slavery equal to that of the desires. All the sages have declared from the house-tops that man can be his own worst enemy as well as his best friend. To be free or to be a slave lies in his own hands.
And what is true for the individual is true for society. If by abundance you mean everyone having plenty to eat and drink and to clothe himself with, enough to keep his mind trained and educated, I should be satisfied.
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But I should not like to pack more stuffs in my belly than I can digest and more things than I can ever usefully use. But neither do I want poverty, penury, misery, dirt and dust in India. He who would sacrifice his life for others has hardly time to reserve for himself a place in the sun. True humility means most strenuous and constant endeavor entirely directed towards the service of humanity.
Just as one must not receive, so must one not possess anything which one does not really need. It would be a breach of this principle to possess unnecessary food-stuffs, clothing, or furniture. For instance, one must not keep a chair if one can do without it. I know that I have still before me a difficult path to traverse. I must reduce myself to zero. So long as a man does not of his own free will put himself last among his fellow creatures, there is no salvation for him.
Ahimsa is the farthest limit of humility. My imperfections and failures are as much a blessing from God as my successes and my talents and I lay them both at his feet. When I admire the wonders of a sunset or the beauty of the moon, my soul expands in the worship of the creator. The very first step in nonviolence is that we cultivate in our daily life, as between ourselves, truthfulness, humility, tolerance, loving kindness.
There is an orderliness in the universe, there is an unalterable law governing everything and every being that exists or lives. It is no blind law; for no blind law can govern the conduct of living beings. One, who abandons all desires, is free from pride and selfishness and behaves as one apart, finds peace. The main purpose of life is to live rightly, think rightly, act rightly. The soul must languish when we give all our thought to the body. I do not want to foresee the future. I am concerned with taking care of the present.
God has given me no control over the moment following. Freedom is never dear at any price. It is the breath of life. What would a man not pay for living? Truth never damages a cause that is just. The seeker after truth should be humbler than the dust. The world crushes the dust under its feet, but the seeker after truth should so humble himself that even the dust could crush him. Only then, and not till then, will he have a glimpse of truth.
There is nothing on earth that I would not give up, excepting of course, two things and two things only, truth and nonviolence. Truth is by nature self-evident. As soon as you remove the cobwebs of ignorance that surround it, it shines clear. Silence has now become both a physical and spiritual necessity for me. Originally it was taken to relieve the sense of pressure. Then I wanted time for writing.
After, however, I had practiced it for some time I saw the spiritual value of it. It suddenly flashed across my mind that that was the time when I could best hold communion with God. And now I feel as though I was naturally built for silence. What is Truth? All that I can in true humility present to you is that Truth is not to be found by anybody who has not got an abundant sense of humility. If you would swim on the bosom of the ocean of Truth you must reduce yourself to zero.
An error does not become truth by reason of multiplied propagation, nor does truth become error because nobody sees it. But it is impossible for us to realize perfect truth so long as we are imprisoned in this mortal frame. Truth alone will endure, all the rest will be swept away before the tide of time. Truth, purity, self-control, firmness, fearlessness, humility, unity, peace, and renunciation — these are the inherent qualities of a civil resister. Silence becomes cowardice when occasion demands speaking out the whole truth and acting accordingly.
In the midst of death life persists. Fear of death makes us devoid both of valour and religion. For want of valour is want of religious faith. Man lives freely only by his readiness to die, if need be, at the hands of his brother, never by killing him. Life and death are but phases of the same thing, the reverse and obverse of the same coin.
I came alone in this world, I have walked alone in the valley of the shadow of death, and I shall quit alone when the time comes. We do not know whether it is good to live or to die. Therefore, we should not take delight in living, nor should we tremble at the thought of death. We should be equiminded towards death. Where death without resistance or death after resistance is the only way, neither party should think of resorting to law-courts or help from the government.
The wise are unaffected either by death or life.
Teaching with Heart and Soul
These are but faces of the same coin. More death quotes , loneliness quotes. If you want real peace in the world, start with children. A man must arrange his physical and cultural circumstances so that they do not hinder him in his service of humanity, on which all his energies should be concentrated. The cry for peace will be a cry in the wilderness, so long as the spirit of nonviolence does not dominate millions of men and women. I offer you peace. I offer you love. I offer you friendship. I see your beauty. I hear your need. I feel your feelings.
But to befriend the one who regards himself as your enemy is the quintessence of true religion. The other is mere business. I believe in the essential unity of all people and for that matter of all lives. Therefore, I believe that if one person gains spiritually, the whole world gains, and if one person falls, the whole world falls to that extent. Mankind is notoriously too dense to read the signs that God sends from time to time. We require drums to be beaten into our ears, before we should wake from our trance and hear the warning and see that to lose oneself in all, is the only way to find oneself.
My life is an indivisible whole, and all my attitudes run into one another; and they all have their rise in my insatiable love for mankind. Each one has to find his peace from within. And peace to be real must be unaffected by outside circumstances. Brute nature has been know to yield to the influence of love. You must never despair of human nature.
The law of sacrifice is uniform throughout the world. To be effective it demands the sacrifice of the bravest and the most spotless. Service which is rendered without joy helps neither the servant nor the served. But all other pleasures and possessions pale into nothingness before service which is rendered in a spirit of joy.
Measures must always in a progressive society be held superior to men, who are after all imperfect instruments, working for their fulfilment. It has always been a mystery to me how men can feel themselves honoured by the humiliation of their fellow beings. If we are to teach real peace in this world, and if we are to carry on a real war against war, we shall have to begin with the children.
Nonviolence is not a garment to be put on and off at will. Its seat is in the heart, and it must be an inseparable part of our being. My life is dedicated to service of India through the religion of nonviolence which I believed to be the root of Hinduism. Non-cooperation is a measure of discipline and sacrifice, and it demands respect for the opposite views.
If co-operation is a duty, I hold that non-co-operation also under certain conditions is equally a duty. It cannot be achieved through pure personal effort. We should meet abuse by forbearance. Human nature is so constituted that if we take absolutely no notice of anger or abuse, the person indulging in it will soon weary of it and stop. Violent means will give violent freedom. That would be a menace to the world and to India herself.
To deprive a man of his natural liberty and to deny to him the ordinary amenities of life is worse then starving the body; it is starvation of the soul, the dweller in the body. Nonviolence is the greatest force at the disposal of mankind. It is mightier than the mightiest weapon of destruction devised by the ingenuity of man.
Is Your Body's Condition a Reflection of Your Soul's Condition? — Charisma Magazine
I object to violence because when it appears to do good, the good is only temporary, the evil it does is permanent. Intolerance is itself a form of violence and an obstacle to the growth of a true democratic spirit.
I have nothing new to teach the world. Truth and nonviolence are as old as the hills. All I have done is to try experiments in both on as vast a scale as I could. Nonviolence is not to be used ever as the shield of the coward. It is the weapon of the brave. What we are doing to the forests of the world is but a mirror reflection of what we are doing to ourselves and to one another. Monotony is the law of nature. Look at the monotonous manner in which the sun rises. The monotony of necessary occupation is exhilarating and life giving.
The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated. As for food, India has plenty of fertile land, there is enough water and no dearth of man power… The public should be educated to become self reliant. Once they know that they have got to stand on their own legs, it would electrify the atmosphere.
The purpose of life is undoubtedly to know oneself. We cannot do it unless we learn to identify ourselves with all that lives. The sum-total of that life is God. I want to realize brotherhood or identity not merely with the beings called human, but I want to realize identity with all life, even with such things as crawl upon earth. I hold flesh-food to be unsuited to our species. We err in copying the lower animal world if we are superior to it.
I do feel that spiritual progress does demand at some stage that we should cease to kill our fellow creatures for the satisfaction of our bodily wants. They had also brought out the truth that man eats not for enjoyment but to live. Human nature will find itself only when it fully realizes that to be human it has to cease to be beastly or brutal. When I see a cow, it is not an animal to eat, it is a poem of pity for me and I worship it and I shall defend its worship against the whole world. The basis of my vegetarianism is not physical, but moral. If anybody said that I should die if I did not take beef tea or mutton, even on medical advice, I would prefer death.
That is the basis of my vegetarianism. I submit that scientists have not yet explored the hidden possibilities of the innumerable seeds, leaves and fruits for giving the fullest possible nutrition to mankind. Cow-slaughter and man-slaughter are in my opinion two sides of the same coin. There is no need of a teacher for those who know how to think.
A wise parent allows the children to make mistakes. It is good for them once in a while to burn their fingers. Responsibility will mellow and sober the youth and prepare them, for the burden they must discharge. Real education has to draw out the best from the boys and girls to be educated. This can never be done by packing ill-assorted and unwanted information into the heads of the pupils. It becomes a dead weight crushing all originality in them and turning them into mere automata. An intellect that is developed through the medium of socially useful labour will be an instrument for service and will not easily be led astray or fall into devious paths.
I hold that, as the largest part of our time is devoted to labour for earning our bread, our children must from their infancy be taught the dignity of such labour. Our first duty is that we should not be a burden on society, i. From this point of view self-sufficiency itself is a kind of service. After becoming self-sufficient we shall use our spare time for the service of others. If all become self-sufficient, none will be in trouble. Given the right kind of teachers, our children will be taught the dignity of labour and learn to regard it as an integral part and a means of their intellectual growth, and to realize that it is patriotic to pay for their training through their labour.
Education must be of a new type for the sake of the creation of a new world. Character cannot be built with mortar and stone. It cannot be built by hands other than your own. The Principal and the Professor cannot give you character from the pages of books. Character building comes from their very lives really speaking, it must come from within yourselves. When it is remembered that the primary aim of all education is, or should be, the moulding of the character of pupils, a teacher who has a character to keep need not lost heart.
If teachers impart all the knowledge in the world to their students but inculcate not truth and purity among them, they will have betrayed them and instead of raising them set them on the downward road to perdition. Persistent questioning and healthy inquisitiveness are the first requisite for acquiring learning of any kind. The students should be, above all, humble and correct… The greatest to remain great has to be the lowliest by choice.
Let us now cry a halt and concentrate on education the child properly through manual work, not as a side activity, but as the prime means of intellectual training. You have to train the boys in one occupation or another. Round this special occupation you will train up his mind, his body, his handwriting, his artistic sense, and so on.
He will be master of the craft he learns. If India is not to declare spiritual bankruptcy, religious instruction of its youth must be held to be at least as necessary as secular instruction. Confession of errors is like a broom which sweeps away the dirt and leaves the surface brighter and clearer. I feel stronger for confession. There will have to be rigid and iron discipline before we achieve anything great and enduring, and that discipline will not come by mere academic argument and appeal to reason and logic.
Discipline is learnt in the school of adversity. Even if you are a minority of one, the truth is the truth. I do not want my house to be walled in on all sides and my windows to be stifled. I want all the cultures of all lands to be blown about my house as freely as possible. But I refuse to be blown off my feet by any.
Moral authority is never retained by any attempt to hold on to it. It comes without seeking and is retained without effort. There is nothing more potent than thought. Deed follows word and word follows thought. The word is the result of a mighty thought, and where the thought is mighty and pure the result is always mighty and pure. It is my own firm belief that the strength of the soul grows in proportion as you subdue the flesh. I want freedom for the full expression of my personality. Man has always desired power.
Ownership of property gives this power. Man hankers also after posthumous fame based on power. I have implicit faith in that promise. Life is an aspiration. Its mission is to strive after perfection, which is self-realization. The ideal must not be lowered because of our weaknesses or imperfections. Nonviolent resistance implies the very opposite of weakness. A definite forgiveness would mean a definite recognition of our strength. If we were strong, self-respecting and not susceptible to frightfulness, the foreign rulers would have been powerless for mischief.
He is not dependent on us. We are dependent on him. He is not an interruption in our work. He is the purpose of it. He is not an outsider in our business. He is part of it. We are not doing him a favor by serving him. He is doing us a favor by giving us an opportunity to do so. If patience is worth anything, it must endure to the end of time. And a living faith will last in the midst of the blackest storm. I claim to be a simple individual liable to err like any other fellow mortal. I own, however, that I have humility enough to confess my errors and to retrace my steps. Change yourself — you are in control.
The human body is meant solely for service, never for indulgence. The secret of happy life lies in renunciation. Renunciation is life. Indulgence spells death. He who runs to the doctor, vaidya, or hakim for every little ailment, and swallows all kinds of vegetable and mineral drugs, not only curtails his life, but by becoming the slave of his body instead of remaining its master, loses self-control, and ceases to be a man.
Not to have control over the senses is like sailing in a rudderless ship, bound to break to pieces on coming in contact with the very first rock. We but mirror the world. All the tendencies present in the outer world are to be found in the world of our body.
If we could change ourselves, the tendencies in the world would also change. Part 4. This is the divine mystery supreme. A wonderful thing it is and the source of our happiness. We need not wait to see what others do. Fasting unto death is the last and the most potent weapon in the armoury of Satyagraha a policy of passive political resistance.
It is a sacred thing. But it must be accepted with all its implications. It is not the fast itself, but what it implies that matters. Not until we have reduced ourselves to nothingness can we conquer the evil in us. God demands nothing less than complete self-surrender as the price for the only real freedom that is worth having.
Every moment of your life is infinitely creative and the universe is endlessly bountiful. Just put forth a clear enough request, and everything your heart desires must come to you.
About the Author
I have naturally formed the habit of restraining my thoughts. A thoughtless word hardly ever escaped my tongue or pen. Experience has taught me that silence is part of the spiritual discipline of a votary of truth. We find so many people impatient to talk. All this talking can hardly be said to be of any benefit to the world. It is so much waste of time. My shyness has been in reality my shield and buckler. It has allowed me to grow. It has helped me in my discernment of truth. The richest grace of ahimsa will descend easily upon the owner of hard discipline.
For winning Swaraj one requires iron discipline. Independence means voluntary restraints and discipline, voluntary acceptance of the rule of law. Good government is no substitute for self-government. Every person in a well-ordered state is fully conscious of both his responsibilities and his rights.
Among the many misdeeds of British rule in India, history will look upon the Act depriving a whole nation of arms as the blackest. Corruption and hypocrisy ought not to be inevitable products of democracy, as they undoubtedly are today. So far as I can see the atomic bomb has deadened the finest feeling that has sustained mankind for ages.
A good person will resist an evil system with his whole soul. Disobedience of the laws of an evil state is therefore a duty. It is derogatory to the dignity of mankind, it is derogatory to the dignity of India, to entertain for one single moment hatred towards Englishmen. A democrat must be utterly selfless. He must think and dream not in terms of self or of party, but only of democracy.
A policy is a temporary creed liable to be changed, but while it holds good it has got to be pursued with apostolic zeal. A must-read for all those who care about the future of our children. Our team included K—12 teachers, assistant principals, principals, researchers, curriculum designers, and university faculty who have integrated the practices and principles of engaged teaching in their own learning communities.
In writing and developing this book, our team drew upon our own action research and personal experiences, as well as the experiences of thousands of educators we have been in touch with over the years through courses, professional development, interviews, focus groups, and research projects. See the bio of each writer below. We dedicate this book to the educators who work every day to support the learning, growth, and development of their students.
Fill out your info below to access a free book excerpt. Laura Weaver Co-Author Laura Weaver, MA, is the Co-Executive Director of the PassageWorks Institute, an educational nonprofit providing innovative practices and principles that support educators in developing a reflective and authentic teaching approach; integrating social, emotional, and academic learning into classrooms; and building meaningful and effective learning communities and school culture. In addition to her role as Co-Executive Director, Laura has taught courses and workshops, offered presentations at schools and conferences, led all-faculty professional development, consulted with school leadership, developed resources for educators and parents, and facilitated transitions programs for young people.
She was also the Co-Founder and Director of Bridges, a nonprofit dedicated to serving the needs of people living with hunger and poverty in the greater Philadelphia region. Laura lives in Colorado and is the parent of two young adults who inspire her every day. He is a member of the core faculty of PassageWorks and teaches courses and workshops, facilitates conferences and dialogues, and presents keynotes and lectures.
Mark has been teaching and facilitating professional development programs and graduate courses for over seventeen years. Before joining PassageWorks in , Mark was a staff and faculty member of Naropa University, where he continues to teach graduate courses in leadership and systems thinking. Mark joined Naropa in and served as Director of Environmental Studies and helped launch a new graduate degree program.
Previous to his tenure at Naropa, Mark helped found a public computer software company and served on the board and in several roles until he left as president and CEO. She provides professional development and leadership coaching to teachers, school administrators, and managers in organizations throughout the United States.
Vivian earned her PhD at the University of Colorado, Boulder, studying organizational change, equity, and leadership. For more than thirty years, she has conducted educational research, designed and facilitated workshops, and published educational writings to promote cultural responsiveness and bias elimination. Vivian is known in school districts, universities, and nonprofit organizations for skillful facilitation, excellent team leadership, and quality project management.
Catherine Fink Writing Team Catherine Fink is a Los Angeles—based educator and writer who has taught English and human development at three independent schools for grades 7 and 9—12 and at Los Angeles Community College. She also taught three PassageWorks transitions curricula in school advisory programs. Catherine was a student of a PassageWorks transitions program in Colorado in , was a founding board member of the PassageWorks Institute in , and has been a faculty member with the institute since its inception.