Saturday, December 18, 2010

Quotes from Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi: A.D. 1869-1948

Count Lyev Nikolayevich Tolstoy A.D. 1828-1910, better known as Leo Tolstoy, was influential in the life of Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi, an Indian Hindu who applied the teachings of Yeshua on nonresistance to evil by force so that the nation of India was liberated from the tyranny of Britain through nonviolence in 1947; one year before Gandhi's assassination (Martyrdom). 
Because his fellow countrymen were resisting evil done to them by Muslims and the professing Christians, Gandhi fasted until his kidneys nearly stopped working, and that, more than one time. He lived from 1869-1948. 

Below are numerous quotes from Gandhi: 
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.
I like your Christ; I do not like your Christians. Your Christians are so unlike your Christ.
A 'No' uttered from the deepest conviction is better than a 'Yes' merely uttered to please, or worse, to avoid trouble.
A coward is incapable of exhibiting love; it is the prerogative of the brave.
Even if you are a minority of one, the truth is the truth.
Faith... must be enforced by reason... when faith becomes blind it dies.
Fear has its use but cowardice has none.

Fear of death makes us devoid both of valour and religion. For want of valour is want of religious faith.

You don't have to burn books to destroy a culture. Just get people to stop reading them.
First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win.
What do I think of Western civilization? I think it would be a very good idea.

The only devils in the world are those in our own hearts and that is where all of our battles ought to be fought.

A man is but the product of his thoughts; what he thinks, he becomes.

I would like you to lay down the arms you have as being useless for saving you or humanity. You will invite Herr Hitler and Signor Mussolini to take what they want of the countries you call your possessions...If these gentlemen choose to occupy your homes, you will vacate them. If they do not give you free passage out, you will allow yourselves, man, woman, and child, to be slaughtered, but you will refuse to owe allegiance to them.
A religion that takes no account of practical affairs and does not help to solve them is no religion.
An error does not become truth by reason of multiplied propagation, nor does truth become error because nobody sees it.
An ounce of practice is worth more than tons of preaching.
An unjust law is itself a species of violence. Arrest for its breach is more so.
Be the change that you want to see in the world.
God is, even though the whole world deny him. Truth stands, even if there be no public support. It is self-sustained.
I am prepared to die, but there is no cause for which I am prepared to kill.
I object to violence because when it appears to do good, the good is only temporary; the evil it does is permanent.
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.
Strength does not come from physical capacity. It comes from an indomitable will.
In a gentle way, you can shake the world.
In matters of conscience, the law of the majority has no place.
Infinite striving to be the best is man's duty; it is its own reward. Everything else is in God's hands.
It has always been a mystery to me how men can feel themselves honoured by the humiliation of their fellow beings.

It is any day better to stand erect with a broken and bandaged head then to crawl on one's belly, in order to be able to save one's head.

It is easy enough to be friendly to one's friends. But to befriend the one who regards himself as your enemy is the quintessence of true religion. The other is mere business.
It is my own firm belief that the strength of the soul grows in proportion as you subdue the flesh.

It is the quality of our work which will please God and not the quantity.
Justice that love gives is a surrender, justice that law gives is a punishment.

Let us all be brave enough to die the death of a martyr, but let no one lust for martyrdom.

Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.
Man becomes great exactly in the degree in which he works for the welfare of his fellow-men.
Man falls from the pursuit of the ideal of plan living and high thinking the moment he wants to multiply his daily wants. Man's happiness really lies in contentment.
Nearly everything you do is of no importance, but it is important that you do it.

Nobody can hurt me without my permission.

Non-cooperation with evil is as much a duty as is cooperation with good.

Non-violence and truth are inseparable and presuppose one another.
Poverty is the worst form of violence.
Non-violence 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.

Non-violence is the article of faith.
Non-violence is the greatest force at the disposal of mankind. It is mightier than the mightiest weapon of destruction devised by the ingenuity of man.
Non-violence requires a double faith, faith in God and also faith in man.

Non-violence, which is the quality of the heart, cannot come by an appeal to the brain.

One's own religion is after all a matter between oneself and one's Maker and no one else's.

Only he can take great resolves who has indomitable faith in God and has fear of God.

Peace is its own reward.
Prayer is not asking. It is a longing of the soul. It is daily admission of one's weakness. It is better in prayer to have a heart without words than words without a heart.

Prayer is the key of the morning and the bolt of the evening.
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.
The moment there is suspicion about a person's motives, everything he does becomes tainted.

The only tyrant I accept in this world is the still voice within.

The pursuit of truth does not permit violence on one's opponent.

The real ornament of woman is her character, her purity.

The weak can never forgive. Forgiveness is the attribute of the strong.

There are people in the world so hungry, that God cannot appear to them except in the form of bread.
There is a sufficiency in the world for man's need but not for man's greed.
There is nothing that wastes the body like worry, and one who has any faith in God should be ashamed to worry about anything whatsoever.
To believe in something, and not to live it, is dishonest.
To give pleasure to a single heart by a single act is better than a thousand heads bowing in prayer.

Truth is by nature self-evident. As soon as you remove the cobwebs of ignorance that surround it, it shines clear.

Truth never damages a cause that is just.

Truth stands, even if there be no public support. It is self-sustained.
What difference does it make to the dead, the orphans, and the homeless, whether the mad destruction is wrought under the name of totalitarianism or the holy name of liberty or democracy?
A principle is the expression of perfection, and as imperfect beings like us cannot practise perfection, we devise every moment limits of its compromise in practice.
A small body of determined spirits fired by an unquenchable faith in their mission can alter the course of history.
A vow is a purely religious act which cannot be taken in a fit of passion. It can be taken only with a mind purified and composed and with God as witness.
A weak man is just by accident. A strong but non-violent man is unjust by accident.
Action expresses priorities.
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.
Always aim at complete harmony of thought and word and deed. Always aim at purifying your thoughts and everything will be well.
An eye for an eye only ends up making the whole world blind.

As human beings, our greatness lies not so much in being able to remake the world - that is the myth of the atomic age - as in being able to remake ourselves.

But for my faith in God, I should have been a raving maniac.

Capital as such is not evil; it is its wrong use that is evil. Capital in some form or other will always be needed.
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.

Each one has to find his peace from within. And peace to be real must be unaffected by outside circumstances.

Everyone who wills can hear the inner voice. It is within everyone.

Faith is not something to grasp, it is a state to grow into.

I believe in the fundamental truth of all great religions of the world.  (That is, the teaching of righteous living)
Freedom is not worth having if it does not connote freedom to err.  (Err in philosophy but not in righteous living)

I reject any religious doctrine that does not appeal to reason and is in conflict with morality.  (This quote explains the above two)
Gentleness, self-sacrifice and generosity are the exclusive possession of no one race or religion.

Honest disagreement is often a good sign of progress.
Glory lies in the attempt to reach one's goal and not in reaching it.

God sometimes does try to the uttermost those whom he wishes to bless.

God, as Truth, has been for me a treasure beyond price. May He be so to every one of us.

Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do are in harmony.

Healthy discontent is the prelude to progress.
I believe that a man is the strongest soldier for daring to die unarmed.

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.
I do all the evil I can before I learn to shun it? Is it not enough to know the evil to shun it? If not, we should be sincere enough to admit that we love evil too well to give it up.

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.

I have nothing new to teach the world. Truth and Non-violence are as old as the hills. All I have done is to try experiments in both on as vast a scale as I could.

I know, to banish anger altogether from one's breast is a difficult task. It cannot be achieved through pure personal effort. It can be done only by God's grace (Influence).

I look only to the good qualities of men. Not being faultless myself, I won't presume to probe into the faults of others.

In prayer it is better to have a heart without words than words without a heart.

Increase of material comforts, it may be generally laid down, does not in any way whatsoever conduce to moral growth.
Intolerance betrays want of faith in one's cause.
Man lives freely only by his readiness to die, if need be, at the hands of his brother, never by killing him.

Man should forget his anger before he lies down to sleep.

Man's nature is not essentially evil. Brute nature has been known to yield to the influence of love. You must never despair of human nature.
Morality is contraband in war.

Morality is the basis of things and truth is the substance of all morality.

My life is my message.

My religion is based on truth and non-violence. Truth is my God. Non-violence is the means of realising Him.
I will far rather see the race of man extinct than that we should become less than beasts by making the noblest of God's creation, woman, the object of our lust.  (Women do not have equal roles, but equal value from God as men.  I understand that Gandhi said she was the noblest of God’s creation because man is born of woman, carried in the womb of woman, and his lineage continues because of woman)
If co-operation is a duty, I hold that non-co-operation also under certain conditions is equally a duty.
It is unwise to be too sure of one's own wisdom. It is healthy to be reminded that the strongest might weaken and the wisest might err.

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.
Prayer is a confession of one's own unworthiness and weakness.
Providence has its appointed hour for everything. We cannot command results, we can only strive.

Purity of personal life is the one indispensable condition for building up a sound education.

Religion is a matter of the heart. No physical inconvenience can warrant abandonment of one's own religion.

Rights that do not flow from duty well performed are not worth having.

Satisfaction lies in the effort, not in the attainment, full effort is full victory.

Self-respect knows no considerations.
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.
The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others.

The difference between what we do and what we are capable of doing would suffice to solve most of the world's problem.
The law of sacrifice is uniform throughout the world. To be effective it demands the sacrifice of the bravest and the most spotless.
There is a higher court than courts of justice and that is the court of conscience. It supercedes all other courts.
There is more to life than increasing its speed.

There is no principle worth the name if it is not wholly good.

Unwearied ceaseless effort is the price that must be paid for turning faith into a rich infallible experience.

Violent men have not been known in history to die to a man. They die up to a point.
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.

We win justice quickest by rendering justice to the other party.

Whatever you do may seem insignificant to you, but it is most important that you do it.

Where love is, there God is also.

Where there is love there is life.

You can chain me, you can torture me, you can even destroy this body, but you will never imprison my mind.

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“Reason dictates that persons who are truly noble and who love wisdom will honor and love only what is true. They will refuse to follow traditional viewpoints if those viewpoints are worthless...Instead, a person who genuinely loves truth must choose to do and speak what is true, even if he is threatened with death...I have not come to flatter you by this written petition, nor to impress you by my words. I have come to simply beg that you do not pass judgment until you have made an accurate and thorough investigation. Your investigation must be free of prejudice, hearsay, and any desire to please the superstitious crowds. As for us, we are convinced that you can inflict no lasting evil on us. We can only do it to ourselves by proving to be wicked people. You can kill us—but you cannot harm us.” From Justin Martyr's first apology 150 A.D. Martyred A.D. 160