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  • 7/24/2019 Swaraj Swadeshi Satya Sarvodaya

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    SWARAJ

    SWADESHI

    SATYA

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    The only motive is to serve my country, to find out the

    Truth, and to follow it. If, therefore my views are proved

    to be wrong, I shall have no hesitation in rejectingthem.

    If they are proved to be right, I would naturally wish, for

    the sake of the Motherland, that others should adopt

    them.

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    Gandhis Hind Swaraj is not rejection of the

    liberative contribution of modernity. Rather his

    effort can be interpreted as an attempt to integratethese positive elements with a liberating re-

    interpretation of tradition.

    With his critique from within the tradition, Gandhi

    becomes the great synthesiser of contraries within

    and across traditions.

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    Dignity of manual labor

    The good of the individual is contained in the

    good of all

    Each can and should serve society by his own

    labor and profession in the field of his choice.

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    For Gandhi civilisation was by definition a moral

    enterprise: "Civilisation is that mode of conduct

    which points out to man the path of duty

    Unacceptable were the two points - might is right

    and the survival of the fittest.

    Also, colonial imperialism, industrial capitalism,

    and rationalist materialism.

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    Gandhis Hind Swaraj presents us with an

    idealised version of Indian culture that is

    completely counterpunctal to the modern west. Here we pick out three seminal themes:

    swaraj,

    swadeshi and

    satya.

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    Swaraj as self rule and as self-government The first as self-control, rule over oneself,

    was the foundation for the second, self-

    government. In this second sense, local self~government was what Gandhi really had in

    mind.

    Gandhi very decidedly gives priority to self-ruleover self-government, and to both over political

    independence, swatantrata.

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    Essential to both meanings swaraj, was a sense of

    self-respect that is precisely Gandhis answer to

    colonial rule. For Gandhi freedom in its most fundamental sense

    had to mean freedom for self-realisation. But it

    had to be a freedom for all, for the toiling masses,

    and the privileged classes, and most importantly

    for the least and last Indian.

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    Clearly, the foundation of swaraj in both its

    senses had to be threefold: self-respect, self-

    realisation and self-reliance.

    This is what Gandhi tried to symbolise with the

    charka and khadi, both much misunderstood

    symbols today.

    Manchester cloth Vs home spun khadi

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    For Gandhi real rights are legitimated by duties they

    flow from, for both are founded on satya and dharma.

    The modern theory of rights reverses this priority and

    founds rights on the dignity and freedom of the

    individual.

    But comprehensive morality can never be adequately

    articulated or correctly grasped in terms of rights alone.

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    It is this commitment of the individual to hisdesh that was Gandhis Indian alternative to

    western nationalism.

    The village Gandhi idealised was not just a

    geographic place, or a statistic, or a social

    class.

    It was an event, a dream, a happening, a

    culture. As he used "the term village implied not an

    entity, but a set of values"

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    Truth (satya) implies love, and firmness (agraha)

    engenders and therefore serves as a synonym

    for force. Gandhi thus began to call the Indian

    movement Satyagraha, that is to say, the Force

    which is born of Truth and Love or non-violence,

    and gave up the use of the phrase passive

    resistance, in connection with it, so much so that

    even in English writing we often avoided it and

    used instead the word satyagraha...

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    SATYA (Truth): Truthfulness, honesty, transparency,

    accountability, expanding conscience, awareness and

    responsibility; justice with compassion; taking

    responsibility for past mistakes; repentance and

    apology; avoidance of repetition of mistakes, freedom

    from ignorance, errors; pluralism;

    understanding of the multiplicity of truth; humility and

    respect for others truths; holding on to relative truth butcontinuing quest for further truth; attempting to arrive at

    a consensus on key issues; quest for truth.

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    Satyagraha as a combination of reason,

    morality and politics.

    Gandhi defined passive resistance as he

    called it then as "a method of securing rights by

    personal suffering. It appealed to the opponents head, heart and

    interests"

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    Gandhi was the first leader to bring non-violence to

    centre stage in the struggle for freedom with the

    British. He was well aware that adopting "methods of

    violence to drive out the English" would be a

    "suicidal policy".

    Hind Swaraj was precisely intended to stymie such

    a soul-destroying venture.

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    Thus one of the most remarkable re-

    interpretations of Hinduism that Gandhi

    effected was that of the Gita, a text intended to

    persuade a reluctant warrior on the legitimacy

    and even the necessity of joining the battle.

    Gandhi reworks its nishkama karma to

    become the basis of his ahimsa and

    satyagraha!

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    An ecological understanding is now propelling

    us to a new and deep realisation of our

    interdependence. We have only one earth, we

    must learn to share and care. Thus, with regard to the economy and polity,

    Gandhi would have the village as his world; but

    with regard to culture and religion, it was the

    world that was his village! Surely, here we havea viable example of thinking globally and acting

    locally.

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    For Gandhi, "individuality" must be "oriented to

    self-realisation through self-knowledge... in a

    network of interdependence and harmony

    informed by ahimsa Nor was this to be an interdependence of

    dominant-subservient relationships so

    prevalent in our local communities and global

    societies. His swadeshi envisaged a more

    personalised and communitarian society on a

    human scale

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    Gandhi wanted educationreconstructed

    along the lines he thought correctto help

    India move away from the Western concept

    of progress, towards a different form ofdevelopment more suited to its needs and

    more viable, for the world as a whole, than

    the Western model of development.

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    It is not clear whether he was against the spirit of

    modern science and technology, or whether hisopposition to Western-type modernity was

    confined to the manner in which science and

    technology had been used to exploit non-

    European societies.

    In the vast body of responses contained in hiscollected works, one finds ample evidence on

    both sides

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    Sathyagraha and Sarvodaya (uplift of all) are Gandhijis

    most significant and revolutionary contributions to the

    contemporary political thought. Gandhijis originality lay

    in the way he fused truth and non-violence in both theory

    and practice.

    Leave alone the hand-spinning austere living syndrome

    dubbed as Gandhism, the broad lessons Gandhi taught

    boils down to heroic self reliance and fearlessness,

    perched on truth, non-violence, voluntary cooperation

    and an abiding concern for the poor masses.