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Letter to Gandhi

October 6, 2014

Written on October 2, 2014

Gandhiji,

On this day today for the first time I write to you. Over last three or four years, I had the privilege and time to know more about you, to learn from your life. I went through your books, some of the many letters you wrote, spent some time in Sabarmati Ashram. I learnt how to spin on charkha and loved it. I listened to your songs. There is so much that I learnt just by reading about you. Here in this letter to you, I wish to thank you for having lived your life the way you did.

You lead a life full of compassion and while doing so taught us the difficult art of responding with love. You taught us how one can with effort and practice reach a stage where one loves all beings equally, a stage beyond discrimination.

You showed us how attractive is the art of living a simple life. How easily you gave up the clothes and started living with no more than one piece of cloth draped around you! Earlier I thought of it as a sign of strength and will power. Now however, I also see how this simple act would have freed you of many fears and helped you overcome many desires.

I thank you for showing us the value of a self reliant life. I learnt from you how it is possible for one to take care of his or her body and health. One need not run to doctors every now and then but can cure oneself by carefully observing the diet and way of life. I like these natural means as they also help empower people to take care of themselves without falling prey to doctors who are not so well intentioned and compassionate.

But more than anything else, I loved the way you lead your life honestly pursuing the truth and truth alone – how while doing so you made mistakes but instead of brushing them under the carpet, like many of us do, owned up to them with honesty and humility. Pursuit of truth alone, nothing else seemed to be more important to you.

Recently I was working on a doll using cloth and wire. I thought a lot about what could go with her as an accompaniment – a sitar, or a pot or a book to write in. Finally after thinking a lot I struck upon one of my favourite things – a charkha. As I pieced the two together on a platform, the image reminded me of Irom Sharmila who in her struggle for love and peace, has not eaten anything since November 2, 2000. Here she sits peacefully with her charkha, spinning her own yarn of peace, just like you once did.

Charkha

Thank you for inspiring so many people who are helping make this world a better place. Thank you for showing us the possibility of leading a simple and truthful life.

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. nranvah permalink
    October 6, 2014 20:21

    Will written Consti. Can’t think of a more inspiring man.

    Like

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