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So you had a setback? Congratulations. I am not crazy, I really mean it. Though they tend to have depressing effects, setbacks are a necess...

Tuesday, 1 October 2013

Emergence of Gandhi- J.N

World war I ended at last and peace, instead of bringing us relief and progress, brought us repressive legislation and martial law in the Punjab. A bitter sense of humiliation and passionate anger filled our people. All the unending talk of constitutional reform and indianization of services was a mockery and an insult when the manhood of our country was being crushed. And the inexorable and continuous process of exploitation was deepening our poverty and sapping our vitality. We had become a derelict nation.
Yet what could we do, how change this vicious process? We seemed helpless in the grip of this all-powerful monster; our limbs were paralyzed, our minds deadened....
And then Gandhi came.

He was like a powerful current of fresh air that made us stretch ourselves and take deep breadths, like a beam of light that pierced the darkness and removed the scales from our eyes, like a whirlwind that upset many things but most of all the working of people's minds. He did not descend from the top; he seemed to emerge from the millions of India, speaking their their language and incessantly drawing attention to them and their appalling condition. Get off the backs of these peasants and workers, he told us, who live by their exploitation; get rid of this system that produces this poverty and misery. Political freedom took new shape then and acquired a new content. Much that he said we only partially accepted or sometimes did not accept at all. But all this was secondary. The essence of his teachings was fearlessness and truth and action allied to these, always keeping the welfare of masses in view. The greatest gift to an individual or nation, so we had been told in our ancient books was abhaya, fearlessness, not merely bodily courage but the absence of fear from the mind....But the dominant impulse of India under the British rule was that of fear, pervasive, oppressive, strangling fear, the fear of the army, the police, the widespread secret service; fear of the official class; fears of laws meant to suppress and of prison; fear of the landlord's agent; fear of the money-lender; fear of employment and starvation, which were always on the threshold. It was against this all-pervading fear that Gandhi's quiet and determined voice was raised: Be not afraid....

So, suddenly as it were, the black pall of fear was lifted from the people's shoulders, not wholly of course but to an amazing degree. As fear is close companion to falsehood, so truth follows fearlessness. The Indian people did not become much more truthful than they were, nor did they change their essential nature overnight; nevertheless, a sea-change was visible as the need for falsehood and furtive behaviour lessened. It was a psychological change, almost as if some expert in psycho-analytical method had probed deep into the patient's past, found out the origins of his complexes,exposed them to his view, and thus rid him of that burden.
-Jawaharlal Nehru
Mahatma Gandhi Image Courtesy : Wikipedia
Mahatma Gandhi
Image Courtesy : Wikipedia
Note:- This is an article written by Jawaharlal Nehru, the first prime minister of India about the conditions prevailing in the country at the time of Gandhi's arrival and the change he brought. I don't think, I could have written any better than this. My respect to the Father of my nation. If the nation is not what he had visualized, it's not because he failed. It's because, we totally failed him. Jai Hind.

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