Each year, October 2nd is a wonderful day for both India and the rest of the globe. Mohan Das Karamchand Gandhi, the father of the Nation, was born on this day, and it is also recognised as the International Day for Nonviolence to honour Gandhiji's lifelong promotion of the real spirit of nonviolence.
Human civilization is evolving quickly. Every person's quality of life is anticipated to improve as a result of the quick advancements in scientific understanding and the broader availability of information. Unfortunately, we continue to face several issues on a societal, economic, religious, and political level. As the world struggles to meet the Millennium Development Goals, India has one source of inspiration to address its myriad of issues: the father of our nation.
Before diving into its relevance, let’s understand what Gandhian philosophy is in simple terms.
What is Gandhian philosophy?
The collection of religious and political ideals that India's Father of the Nation, Mahatma Gandhi, accepted and cultivated first during his time in South Africa from 1893 to 1914, and then in India, is known as Gandhian philosophy (also referred to as Gandhism). Even though Mahatma Gandhi was introduced to definite Western concepts, Gandhian philosophies had their roots largely in Indian tradition.
Gandhianism's catchphrase, "Simple life and elevated thinking," introduces the movement and sums up its goal of transforming both the person and the community. Consequently, it is essential to work to incorporate Gandhian philosophy into all parts of life and administration in the chaotic times where the globe is dealing with so many issues.
- Non-Violence and Truth: They serve as Gandhian philosophy's two main foundations. Truth was spoken by Mahatma Gandhi in both words and acts. God and morality were the ultimate truths in his eyes. Moral rules and a system were established as a result. According to Mahatma Gandhi, nonviolence is the exact antithesis of violence and is an expression of passionate love.
- Satyagraha: Gandhi ji referred to his overarching strategy of peaceful protest as Satyagraha. It denotes the application of the purest soul force to every instance of unfairness, persecution, and tyranny. It is a strategy for obtaining rights via one's own suffering rather than by hurting other people.
- Sarvodaya: The word "Sarvodaya" means "Universal Uplift" or "Progress of All." The phrase was originally used by Gandhi ji as the headline of his adaptation of "Unto This Last," a work by John Ruskin on governmental economics.
- Swaraj: Gandhi ji gave the phrase swaraj—which means self-rule—the meaning of an integrated revolution that touches on every aspect of life. Gandhi ji stated that for him, swaraj represented liberty for the cruellest of his citizens because he believed that swaraj of people signified the total of all individuals swaraj (self-rule). In its broadest form, swaraj also encompasses self-rule, self-control, and might even be compared to moksha or redemption. It also goes far beyond independence from all restrictions.
- Swadeshi: Swadeshi is a combination of two Sanskrit terms that has its origins in Sanskrit. Swa and desh both refer to one's own or one's own nation. Swadesh, therefore, refers to one's own homeland. The adjectival version of the word swadeshi, which means "of one's own nation," may be roughly interpreted as "self-sufficiency" in most settings.
Relevance of Gandhian Philosophy in Today’s World
The answer to this question is "YES!" Gandhian philosophy is as relevant today as it was during the time of independence. Despite popular belief, Gandhianism is not difficult to practice in the twenty-first century. Gandhi's ideas can be put into practice in the following aspects:
- Philosophy of Society: Modern civilization is a complicated system that is neither entirely theoretical nor value-oriented. Once treasured tradition and authority are now completely ignored. Jealousy, mistrust, suspicion, and hate guide all of humankind. There is an increase in crime, hunger, and prejudice. The deep oneness of our hearts does not radiate with the superficial homogeneity that science and society have brought forth. Therefore, we must immediately modify our thinking. Gandhi contends that upholding the truth ought to be the only goal of life. The achievement of truth and justice by persistent efforts, not only for ourselves but for all of mankind, is the ultimate goal of the person.
- Economy: Mahatma Gandhi's concept of socialism incorporates the practise of non-violence, despite the fact that it is commonly acknowledged that socialism cannot be created without resorting to force. He did not adhere to extremities and did not value total freedom, as in a capitalist democracy, nor did he value rigidity, as in communist dictatorial regimes. He believed that power should be distributed as far as possible. Globalisation is the blending of national economies via the flow of commodities, concepts, thoughts, information, and other services. With the assistance of multinational corporations and international organisations, dominant economies frequently violate the interests of developing nations in order to further their own goals.
- Secularism: Gandhianism was accepting of all faiths, and in today's nations when there is religious conflict, more and more religious and faith-friendly individuals are needed. In order to counteract the growing ethnocentric bias on the basis of faith, class, race, area, etc., tolerance in society is necessary.
- Environmental Sustainability: "Earth has plenty for Human needs, but not for Human greed," Gandhi said. These words by Mahatma Gandhi discuss how human behaviour obliterates the environment and how the time has come for a responsible way of life. The Gandhian ethos must be applied to all ecological preservation initiatives and sustainable development initiatives since the globe is reeling under the weight of global warming, climate change, and resource scarcity.
Gandhi's political achievements gave us our independence, but even now, many years later, his philosophies continue to enlighten both India and the rest of the globe. To ensure a joyful, wealthy, productive, peaceful, and secure future, each person should adhere to the core Gandhian ideologies in their daily lives.