Relevance of Mahatma Gandhi’s philosophy in modern life

Published : 02 Oct 2023 09:58 PM
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Mahatma Gandhi (real name Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi) is a top notch icon of Independent India as well as that of the Sub-Continent. Every year on October 2, we celebrate his birth anniversary amidst the spectre of communal amity and integrity. Mahatma is equally well revered in Bangladesh too. It was during the traumatic Noakhali riots of the year 1946 Mahatma Gandhi played a historic role in relief works post riots phase of the above city. He was very much forthright and down-to-earth person. It because of his simple and amiable demeanour he became deeply closer to the masses. Gandhi basically was a Barristerand practised mostly at South Africa. His mission in life was to abolish untouchability so as to pray evenness among all sections of societies. During the days of liberation struggle of undivided India, Mahatma became closer to the hearts of masses. Through his unassuming role, Gandhi won the hearts of people of all sections of societies. He was very closer and cordial with Nobel Laureate in literature Rabindra Nath Tagore. Though there arose differences of opinion between the two. But as per humanitarian aspect was concerned both were cordial and sublime towards each other. It was Rabindra Nath Tagore who honoured him with the title ‘Mahatma.’ Which indicates ‘pious soul’. Both sat together several times to discuss at length about future course of action for Independent India. But Gurudev was deeply shocked at the way by which Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose was outwitted by some vicious forces. After the Tripuri Congress of the year 1938 Netaji got lost in the wilderness. From another aspect Gandhi was closer to Gurudev. It was Rabindra Nath Tagore’s last birthday on May 8, 1941 when he touched exactly eighty years of his life. Gandhiji wrote an awe-inspiring letter to Tagore. It said, ‘four scoresare not enough. It is better to have five scores.’ Gurudev instantly replied, ‘It is more to have four scores, but impertinent to be alive for five scores.’ This was the glaring instance how Tagore and Gandhi were cordial and intimate towards each other. Thus in the subsequent paragraph it is my humble responsibility to analyse deeply about the relevance of Mahatma Gandhi’s philosophy in modern life. 

To write about Mahatma Gandhi’s philosophy in modern life. It is not an easy task for this writer from India. However I shall try sincerely try to throw light about relevance of Mahatma Gandhi’s philosophy in modern life. Mahatma Gandhi believed that in every religion, human beings should be truthful and non-violent oriented. We should treat citizens on equalfooting. Every citizen of the nation should be accorded equal opportunities in various professional and academic disciplines. 

Glancing over Mahatma Gandhi’s philosophy of life. Under the present circumstances I feel that the philosophy of Mahatma Gandhi is deeply relevant in both India and Bangladesh. In this regard I appeal to my revered online readers not to comprehend my views in its pejorative sense.

Mahatma Gandhi throughout his life always felt that we should always bestow love and compassion to humanity across the globe. As my focusing area pertains to India and Bangladesh. Hence I feel that in both nations humanity should bestow compassion and affection to quite a wide sections of the populaces. These classes of citizens are badly deprived from inheriting basic opportunities in life. Plus Gandhiji detested badly the concept of untouchability. He was a firm believer of the philosophy of Rabindranath Tagore. Gurudev Rabindranath Tagore always felt that in order to rise up to higher echelons of our societies we should treat people of all religions and languages under one banner. There should not be any discriminatory mentality among humanity across the globe. Gandhiji henceforth imbibed these qualities of Tagore in his mind and heart. 

During the days of our liberation struggle, Gandhiji rushed to the poorer and deprived sections. Whenever they land up into any troubles. That is why he was able to reach to the heart of the masses. His writings were so penetrative that till date research scholars are quite inquisitive to think intensely about him. This is no doubt an exquisite endeavour on the part of our scholars. 

Every year I write about Gandhi Jayanti. I stated in details about books written by him. Now as I feel those are very much of a backdated affair. Hence not throwing any light in this regard. 

As stated in Bangladesh, Gandhi is well adored by cross sections of the citizens. In Dhaka and suburban areas of the city Gandhiji is till date well reminisced. His prolific roles in undertaking relief work during relief Noakhali riots of the year 1946 on October 10 was an exemplary phenomenon. Now it is interesting to note that in Noakhali an ashram has been erected in his memory named Gandhi Ashram. 

From another aspect, Mahatma Gandhi felt in order to prosper well in life. We should be involved in various kinds of social works and services. Judging by the current disorderly social and political situations. My perception stands as such. We should give up the ideas of hatred and vengeance towards fellow human beings. Rather if anybody commits inadvertent error in life that particular human being should be explained properly and methodically. So that err is no repeated at all in life. In this regard, Gandhiji’s thought on reading books sounds apt as per upgradation of our social situations in life. My regret is that how many of us are firm believer of Mahatma Gandhi’s philosophy of life. Even father of the nation of Bangladesh, Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman was a firm believer of Gandhiji’s philosophy of life. It is in both India and Bangladesh, both Prime Ministers are trying heart and soul to uphold the noble legacies of Mahatma Gandhi. 

Summing up my above discourses, I feel that Mahatma Gandhi’s philosophy is of deep relevance in both India and Bangladesh. Merely celebrating his birthday should not be our sole criteria, rather we should loudly proclaim that his noble philosophy of life (which has been stated above) should be properly utilised for the development of our societies. We should not just celebrate his birth anniversary, rather there should be proper implementation of his life philosophies. Rather it should be our humble responsibilities to be always civilised always instead of expressing indecorous attitude towards poor and downtrodden sections of our societies. There should not be any violent attitude within us. Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman followed the same path of non-violence as that of Gandhiji. Thus if we properly evaluate our life, Gandhi’s philosophy of life stands of as utmost relevance in our life.

Writer Sujayendra Das is a Columnist, Kolkata, India