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Paperback Gandhi an Autobiography: The Story of My Experiments with Truth Book

ISBN: 0807059099

ISBN13: 9780807059098

Gandhi an Autobiography: The Story of My Experiments with Truth

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Book Overview

Mohandas K. Gandhi is one of the most inspiring figures of our time. In his classic autobiography he recounts the story of his life and how he developed his concept of active nonviolent resistance, which propelled the Indian struggle for independence and countless other nonviolent struggles of the twentieth century.

In a new foreword, noted peace expert and teacher Sissela Bok urges us to adopt Gandhi's "attitude of experimenting, of tesing...

Customer Reviews

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An Imprint of the Divine on the Material World

From this book we can see that Gandhi took everything in his life, from the smallest details of his diet to the grandest political decisions, very, very seriously. He believed that only a blade of the purest metal could cut through illusion to reveal the underlying truth of a society and of a world. The key to this purity for Gandhi was integrity and consistency in every word and deed. If he made a promise to abstain from milk, or to support a particular political position, he would keep that vow even at the risk of his life. This concept of integrity started from Gandhi's personal life and extended outward to each community and each nation that he touched with his message and with his political campaigns. When he worked to elevate the status of the Indian community in South Africa, he worked simultaneously to improve the sanitary habits and internal justice of that community, thereby ensuring that there was integrity not only in the nation of South Africa, but also in the Indian community itself. The same pattern can be seen in his work with the Champaran peasants ("ryots") to remove the crushing feudal tribute of indigo required of them by their landlord masters. As he led that campaign, he simultaneously established schools in the region and once again taught the rudiments of sanitation to the oppressed farmers. And of course his tireless campaign against untouchability, and his work to heal the rifts between Muslims and Hindus were both attempts to ensure the integrity of Indian society itself, which he considered a necessary part of attaining Indian independence from Britain, thereby helping to heal the inconsistency of colonialism at the global level, which in turn brought greater integrity to international relations. Likewise, his promotion of the use of Hindi and Gujarati (this book was written by Gandhi in Gujarati) rather than English in Indian public life, his promotion of homespun Indian cloth and revival of a cottage industry to create it, his civil disobedience in the making of Indian salt from seawater, were all attempts to ensure that the Indian nation and people could define themselves as a more self-sufficient entity having a distinct identity, rather than describing themselves as they related to an external entity, i.e., the British government. At every level, then, he desired and sought to create one thing: integrity. His ethics seemed to be: every person, every family, every community, every nation, that is founded upon an organic set of relationships, has a right to exist, to strengthen its own identity and to shine forth with its own kind of light. The process of integrating smaller such entities into larger ones must be a dialectical, interactive one that respects differences, rather than one of control or subsumption. In this way, the material world comes to reflect the infinite diversity, and the inviolable integrity, of the All, and the Divine thus creates an expression of itself in that material substrate, however tr

My all-time favorite book

I first read this book in the spring of 1998 when I was home with a cold and fever, and I can say that it is one of the best things that ever happened to me. The events described in the book are a hundred years old, but Gandhi has a way of describing their essence which is timeless, and will grip you in a way that makes them entirely relevant to today's world. It made me wonder how the world might have been if people today only followed his ideas. But this is no boring lecture on politics or nonviolence. In fact quite the opposite - it is the sparkling story of a very special man told in his own words. We learn about truth and non-violence in the best way possible, by observing Gandhi's actions as he goes about matters small and big. It brought Gandhi to life in a very special way. I always admired his principles, but now feel closer to Gandhi the man. This is a first-hand account that cannot be ignored. My only regret was that the book ended much too soon (mid 1920's) and there was nothing to cover the rest of his life. I can think of no person of any age who would not be greatly enriched by this book. For the interested, I found the companion book "Satyagraha in South Africa" (also by Gandhi) to be just as good.

Pure Gold!

Well, we all follow "the experts" (although at 48, I am beginning to learn). We all follow the authorities. What would happen if one just kept a totally blank mind toward everything and learned from just plain LIVING. Gandhi makes it clear at the beginning of the book that this is the only way to gain truth. Not to be strongly influenced by others. His agreements and fondness of other theologians really only comes after his experiments. They have to agree with him first. As you begin to read this book, you are on a jouney. It's like being a Martian or being from another planet simply because Gandhi will simply not take anything as truth unless he has experimented with it himself. He was very much the spiritual scientist. This book is also very easy reading. The chapters are short enough to stop and come back to as well. And it is journey which Gandhi makes clear that anybody can follow. You can't really follow this man's experiments. He wants you to do your own experiments. So this book is really quite an adventure. Gandhi's politics, as he makes clear in this book, really stem from his experiments in truth. You can begin yourself. Wake up, tell your wife she is fat, and see what happens! Gandhi came to the conclusion of always practicing "ahimsa". He would practice it over and over again to see if it worked. And he came to the conclusion that it did. As he once said, "Ahimsa is heaven". Ahimsa means non-violence in thought, word, and deed. One can still defend oneself while loving one's enemy. He saw "satya", or truth as synonymous with non-violance. This man stole at one point, eat meat, was far from celibacy. Buy and read this fabulous scientific inquiry into "How to Live". Then start experimenting for yourself. Good luck on your journey. And please be careful! Gandhi nearly killed himself SMOKING!

Extraordinary Book Written by an Extraordinary Man

I have always admired Mr. Gandhi, but really knew very little about him. This book tells of his early life, something most biographies skip choosing to focus on his life in India.Great historical detail of colonial India, living in England and South Africa. A must read for anyone interested in Mr. Gandhi or that period of history.The book has also influenced greatly the way I view life. A very spiritually uplifting book, even for non-Hindus.

Great Truth by one of the greatest man of the century

This book gives you a greater insight into the life passage of a greatest man of the century. Gandhi has written in an uninhibited style and flavour. He has never shyed away from letting the user know his entire life history describing each and every minute happenings in his life. A great read for anyone

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