GANDHI: HIS LIFE AND MESSAGE FOR THE WORLD
I. Early years
A. Born 1869, died 1948, a seaside town in Western India
B. Shy, not much of a student
C. Married at age 13 to another 13-year-old, Kasturbai
D. Lived in an extended family
“I lost no time in assuming the authority of a husband,” Kasturbai “could not go out without my permission.” So when the 13-year-old Kasturbai wished to play games in the street she had to ask her thirteen-year-old husband, and he would frequently say not, for he was jealous. But she was headstrong and “made it a point to go out whenever and wherever she liked” (11).
A. Age nineteen, 1988: went to London to school
B. Left wife and son
C. Tried to imitate British: clothes, music, food
D. Read Old and New Testament, the Sermon on the Mount, “went straight to my heart” (15).
E. Read Bahagavadgita for the first time in 1989:
“It produced a tremendous impact which remained throughout his life. ‘When doubts haunt me, when disappointments stare me in the face…I turn to the Bahagavadgita and find a verse to comfort me” (15).
Gandhi’s secretary, “every moment of Gandhi’s life is a conscious effort to live the message of the Gita” (15).
“The orthodox Hindu interpretation of the Gita as a divine summons to caste obligation and killing was repugnant to Gahdhi and even when he first read the book…he called it an allegory in which the battlefield is the soul and Arjuna man’s higher impulses struggling against evil” (17).
The ideal is action in a just cause without thought of advantage, Krishna says,
Hold alike pleasure and pain, gain and loss, victory and defeat, and gird they loins for the right; so doing thou shalt not incure sin.
F. Gandhi as a yogi who acts: the karma yogi
H. Renunciation is not indifference
İ. Action while renouncing interest in the fruits of action
But there is a unique reward. The great yogis, the
Mahatmas or Great souls having come to Me,