A Gandhi Peace Day Message from Arun

Way back before the 1942 Quit India movement in India that got Gandhi arrested and imprisoned some women from a Women's Center in Wardha, near Sevagram Ashram, in Central India, requested permission to come to the Ashram on October 2 to celebrate Gandhi's birthday in his presence.  Typically, Gandhi wrote back and said:  There will be no celebration but you may come here and perform service of the poor and the destitute and don't forget to bring your own food because I cannot afford to feed you.

gandhi peace dayIt was not that Gandhi was inconsiderate or a penny-pincher but he used every occasion to instil in people the idea of change.  We have become victims of tradition and materialism so that we look for opportunities to party and have a good time all of which means spending money on unnecessary things. Gandhi was always concerned about those less fortunate who, because of circumstances, are forced to live in poverty and destitution and tried to teach people the value of compassion.  

On this day I am reminded of his TALISMAN:

"Whenever you are in doubt or the self becomes too much with you, apply the following test:

"Recall the face of the poorest and the weakest person whom you may have seen and ask yourself if the step you contemplate is going to be of any use to that person.  Will that person gain anything by it?  Will it restore the person control over his/her own life and destiny? In other words, will it lead to Swaraj (self-rule) for the hungry and spiritually starving millions?

"Then you will find your doubts and yourself melting away."


  1. The grand scale of our problems demands that we not wait for our leaders to solve them. We must take action and realign a misaligned world from the grass roots up. We must—and can—succeed in spite of our leaders, not because of them. Our ethical commitments require that each one of us takes peaceful but definite action to help improve the world we live in. Our ethics do not guide us to become angry and sarcastic, but rather activists worthy of following


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