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GANDHI QUOTES > EPIGRAMS FROM GANDHIJI
 

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Earning

  • May not men earn their bread by intellectual labour? No. The needs of the body must be supplied by the body.

  •    TIG-135

Earth

  • This little globe of ours is not a toy of yesterday.    

  • MM-286

Earthquake

  • A man like me cannot but believe that this earthquake (Earthquake in Bihar, 15th January, 1934) is a divine chastisement sent by God for our sins.

  •    T-3-247

Eating

  • Eating for the sake of pleasure is a sin like animal indulgence for the sake of it.

  •     XXVI-453

Economics

  • Economics that hurt the moral well-being of an individual or a nation are immoral and therefore sinful.

  • MM-263

  • That economics is untrue which ignores or disregards moral values.

  •     XXV-475

  • The study of Indian economics is the study of the spinning wheel.

  •     XXV-561

  • We can try to canalize economic trends, we can’t run against them in a head-on collision.

  •    T-7-185

Education

  • An education which does not teach us to discriminate between good and bad, to assimilate the one and eschew the other, is a misnomer.

  •     T-5-43

  • Education should be so revolutionized as to answer the wants of the poorest villager, instead of answering those of an imperial exploiter.

  •     T-4-182

  • Education in the understanding of citizenship is a short-term affair if we are honest and earnest.        

  • MM-378
  • Basic education links the children, whether of the cities or the villages, to all that is best and lasting in India.

  •     T-6-23

  • Is not education the art of drawing out full manhood of the children under training?    

  • XXVI-275

  • Literacy is itself is no education.

  •     MM-379

  • Literacy is not the end of education nor even the beginning.    

  • EWE-22

  • Literary education should follow the education of the hand - the one gift that visibly distinguishes man from beast.    

  • EWE-21

  • Real education has to draw out the best from the boys and girls to be educated.    

  • EWE-32

  • True education must correspond to the surrounding circumstances or it is not a healthy growth.      

  • XXVI-275

  • What is really needed to make democracy function is not knowledge of facts, but right education.


  • T-7-209

  • National education to be truly national must reflect the national condition for the time being.


  • XXVI-275

  • The function of Nayee-Talim is not to teach an occupation, but through it to develop the whole man.    

  • T-7-384

  • I believe that religious education must be the sole concern of religious association.

  •     EWE-30

  • By education I mean an all-round drawing out of the best in the child and man-body, mind and spirit.

  • MM-379

  • By spiritual training I mean education of the heart.

  •     EWE-21

  • Experience gained in two schools under my control has taught me that punishment does not purify, if anything, it hardens children.

  •     T-2-218

  • I consider writing as a fine art. We kill it by imposing the alphabet on little children and making it the beginning of learning.    

  • T-4-164

  • I do regard spinning and weaving as the necessary part of any national system of education.


  • XXVI-275

  • The aim of university education should be to turn out true servants of the people who will live and die for the country’s freedom.    

  • MM-381

  • A balanced intellect presupposes a harmonious growth of body, mind and soul.

  •     MM-379

  • Love requires that true education should be easily accessible to all and should be of use to every villager in his daily life.    

  • MM-381

  • The notion of education though handicrafts rises from the contemplation of truth and love permeating life’s activities.    

  • MM-381

  • The fees that you pay do not cover even a fraction of the amount that is spent on your education from the public exchequer.   

  • T-2-345

  • Persistent questioning and healthy inquisitiveness are the first requisite for acquiring learning of any kind.

  • MM-377

  • If we want to impart education best suited to the needs of the villagers, we should take the vidyapith to the villages.    

  • T-4-163

  • In a democratic scheme, money invested in the promotion of learning gives a tenfold return to the people even as a seed sown in good soil returns a luxuriant crop.    

  • EWE-28

  • All education in a country has got to be demonstrably in promotion of the progress of the country in which it is given.    

  • MM-381

  • The schools and colleges are really a factory for turning out clerks for Government.    

  • T-2-13

  • The canker has so eaten into the society that in many cases the only meaning of education is a knowledge of English.

  •     EWE-11

  • The emphasis laid on the principle of spending every minute of one’s life usefully is the best education for citizenship.

  •    EWE-24


Effort

  • The pleasure lies in making the effort, not in its fulfillment.

  •    T-5-174

Ego

  • We are all like water; we have to strive so to rarefy ourselves that all the ego in us perishes and we merge in the infinite to the eternal good of all.    

  • T-2-308

Employment

  • Khadi will cease to have any value in my eyes if it does not usefully employ the millions.   

  • T-7-187

Enemy

  • I recognise no one as my enemy on the face of the earth.

  •     XXVI-268

  • In the dictionary of satyagraha, there is no enemy.   

  • T-5-162

  • No man could look upon another as his enemy unless he first became his own enemy.    

  • T-7-204

Englishman-English Language

  • Englishmen must learn to be Brahmins, not banias.    

  • MM-325

  • Civilization is not and incurable disease, but it should never be forgotten that the English people are at present afflicted by it.   

  • X-21

  • Non-co-operation is a movement intended to invite Englishmen to co-operate with us on honourable terms or retire from our land.

  •     T-2-40

  • Swaraj means a state such that we can maintain our separate existence without the presence of the English.    

  • T-2-19

  • However virile the English language may be, it can never become the language of the masses of India.    

  • T-7-51

  • The English language is so elastic that you can find another word to say the same thing.    

  • T-5-150

  • If the English educated neglect, as they have done and even now continue, as some do, to be ignorant of their mother tongue, linguistic starvation will abide.

  •     T-7-51

  • We the English educated Indians often unconsciously make the terrible mistake of thinking that the microscopic minority of the English-speaking Indians is the whole of India.    

  • T-2-326

  • I am not anti-English, I am not anti-British, I am not anti-any Government, but I am anti-untruth, anti-humbug and anti-injustice.

  •     MM-322

  • I refuse to put the unnecessary strain of learning English upon my sisters for the sake of false pride or questionable social advantage.    

  • XX-159

  • My love of the British is equal to that of my own people.    

  • MM-323

  • My mission is to convert every Indian, every Englishman and finally the world to nonviolence for regulating mutual relations, whether political, economic, social or religious.    

  • T-5-221

  • My personal religion enables me to serve my countrymen without hurting English, or for that matter anybody else.    

  • MM-322

  • My plea is for banishing the English language as a cultural usurper, as we successfully banished the political rule of the English usurper.

  •     T-8-128

  • If any Englishman dedicated his life to securing the freedom of India, resisting tyranny and serving the land, I should welcome that Englishman as an Indian.

  •     X-41

  • Personally I crave not for ‘independence’, which I do not understand, but I long for freedom from the English yoke.    

  • T-2-326

  • By patriotism I mean the welfare of the whole people, and if I could secure it at the hands of the English, I should bow down my head to them.     X-41

  • Through the deliverance of India, I seek to deliver the so-called weaker races of the earth from the crushing heels of Western exploitation in which England is the greatest partner.

  •     T-2-327

  • To get rid of the infatuation for English is one of the essentials of Swaraj.

  •     EWE-46

  • A smattering of English is worse than useless; it is an unnecessary tax on our women.    

  • XIV-46

  • Ram Mohan Roy would have been a greater reformer and Lokmanya Tilak a greater scholar if they had not to start with the handicap of having to think in English and transmit their thoughts chiefly in English.

  • EWE-9

  • This belief in the necessity of English training has enslaved us. It has unfitted us for true national service.    

  • EWE-8

  • Of all the superstitions that affect India, none is so great as that a knowledge of the English language is necessary for imbibing ideas of liberty and developing accuracy to thought.    

  • EWE-10

  • The canker has so eaten into the society that in many cases the only meaning of education is a knowledge of English.    

  • EWE-11

  • We Hindus and Mohamedans would have to blame our folly rather than the English, if we allowed them to put us asunder.    

  • X-30

  • It would be a sad day for India if it has to inherit the English scale and the English tastes to utterly unsuitable to the Indian environment.

  •     T-2-18

  • My heart rebels against any foreigner imposing on my country the peace which is here called Pax-Britannica.    

  • T-2-201

  • Christianity in India is inextricably mixed up for the last hundred and fifty years with the British rule.

  •     T-2-341

  • No matter what the cause was and wherever it was, Indian governments must never requisition the services of British soldiers to deal with civil disturbances.     

  • T-7-359

  • There is as much need for a change of heart among the Hindus and Mussalmans as there is among the British, before a proper settlement is arrived at.     

  • XXVI-233

  • Let us learn from the English rulers the simple fact that the oppressors are blind to the enormity of their won misdeeds.    

  • XXV-397

  • Man had the supreme knack of deceiving himself; the Englishman was supremest amongst men.

  • T-8-44

  • The Britisher is the top dog and the Indian the underdog in his own country.     

  • T-3-71

  • That I want to destroy the British imperialism is another matter, but I want to do so by converting those who are associated with it.    

  • T-4-93

  • India is less manly under the British rule than she ever was before.

  •     T-2-100

  • The British power is the overlord without whom Indian princes cannot breathe.   

  • T-5-192

  • My conception of dominion status implies present ability to sever the British connection if I wish to.

  •         T-2-382

  • The British are weak in numbers, we are weak in spite of our numbers.

  •     T-2-20

  • My motto is "Unite now, today if you can; fight if you must. But in every case avoid British intervention."

  • XXVI-233

  • Will Great Britain have an unwilling India dragged into war or a willing ally co-operating with her in the prosecution of a defence of true democracy?

  •     T-5-167

  • Boycott brought about anyhow of British cloth cannot yield the same results as such boycott brought about by hand-spinning and khaddar.

  •    XXV-475

  • I must fight unto the death the unholy attempt to impose British methods and British institutions on India.    

  • XXV-489

  • The Indian struggle is not anti-British, it is anti-exploitation, anti-foreign rule, not anti-foreigners.


  • T-5-255

  • The way out of the riots, on the one hand, and the British bayonets on the other is frank acceptance of nonviolence.   

  • T-5-238

  • What senseless violence does is to prolong the lease of life of the British or foreign rule.   

  • T-7-194

  • Our nonviolence vis--vis the British Government has been the nonviolence of the weak.   

  • MM-349

  • I believe in the capacity of India to offer nonviolent battle to the English rulers.   

  • XXV-489

  • The builders of the British Indian Empire have patiently built its four pillars-the European interests, the army, the Indian princes and the communal divisions.   

  • T-5-237

  • The collector of revenue and the policeman are the only symbols by which millions in India’s villages know British rule.   

  • T-7-215

  • It was not through democratic methods that Britain bagged India.

  •     T-5-277

  • For my own part, I do not want the freedom of India if it means extinction of English or the disappearance or Englishman.    

  • T-2-200

  • It is derogatory to the dignity of mankind, it is derogatory to the dignity of India, to entertain for one single moment hatred towards Englishmen.    

  • T-2-199

  • If you must kill English officials, why not kill me instead?   

  • T-3-102

  • I am just not thinking of India’s deliverance. It will come, but will it be worth if England and France fall, or if they come out victorious over Germany ruined and humbled?   

  • T-5-161

  • I claim to have been a lifelong and wholly disinterested friend of the British people.    

  • T-5-295

  • My attitude towards the British is one of utter friendliness and respect.

  •     XXVI-52

  • I may fight the British ruler, but I do not hate the English or their language. In fact, I appreciate their literary treasures.

  •    T-4-93

  • By ahimsa we will be able to save the cow and also win the friendship of the English.

  •    XXV-520

Equality

  • Equality of sexes does not mean equality of occupations.

  •     MM-296

  • Economic equality of my conception does not mean that every one will literally have the same amount.

  • MM-267

  • The real meaning of economic equality is " To each according to his need."

  •     MM-267

  • What is equality of rights between a giant and a dwarf?

  •     T-3-71

  • Economic equality is the master-key to nonviolent independence.

  •     MM-257

  • The prince and the peasant will not be equalized by cutting off the prince’s head.

  •     MM-248

  • No two leaves were alike, and yet there was no antagonism between them or between the branches on which they grew.

  •     T-7-115

  • Under ideal conditions, the barrister and the bhangi (sweeper) should both get the same payment.     

  • T-8-63

  • If a single man demanded as much as a man with a wife and four children, then that would be a violation of the concept of economic equality.

  •     T-7-47
  • "All men are born equal and free" is not Nature’s law in the literal sense.

  •     MM-350

  • My idea of society is that while we born equal, meaning that we have a right to equal opportunity, all have not the same capacity.

  •     MM-266

  • Let no one try to justify the glaring difference between the classes and the masses, the prince and the pauper by saying that the former need more.

  •     T-7-47

  • The real implication of equal distribution is that each man shall have the wherewithal to supply all his natural needs and no more.

  •     MM-268

  • The elephant needs a thousand times more food than the ant but that is not an indication of inequality.

  • T-7-47

  • No man is a true believer unless he desireth for his brother that which he desireth for himself.


  • T-7-309

  • How can I even secretly harbour the thought that my neighbour’s faith is inferior to mine?

  •    T-3-257

Ethics

  • Teaching of fundamental ethics is undoubtedly a function of the state.

  •     TIG-151

  • By religion I have not in mind fundamental ethics but what goes by the name of denominationalism.

  •     EWE-31

  • To me God is Truth and Love; God is ethics and morality; God is fearlessness.

  •    TIG-10

Euclid

  • Euclid’s line is one without breadth, but no one has so far been able to draw it and never will.


  • MM-131

  • If Euclid’s pint, thought incapable of being drawn by human agency, has an imperishable value, my picture has its own for mankind to live.

  •     MM-372

  • Absolute trusteeship is an abstraction like Euclid’s definition of a point, and its equally unattainable.    MM-372


Europe

  • Europe is today only nominally Christian. It is really worshipping Mammon.

  •     TIG-143

  • European civilization is no doubt suited for the Europeans but it will mean ruin for India, if we endeavour to copy it.

  •     T-3-94

  • An India prostrate at the feet of Europe can give no hope to humanity.

  •     T-2-46

  • A free India will claim to examine every European interest on its merits and that which conflicts with the national interest will go by the board.

  •    T-5-192

Evil

  • Not until we have reduced ourselves to nothingness can we conquer the evil in us.

  •     TIG-56

  • He who has a living faith in God will not do evil deeds with the name of God on his lips.   

  • T-4-252

  • Non-co-operation is a protest against an unwitting and unwilling participation in evil.

  •     T-2-45

  • Nonviolence does not signify that man must not fight against the enemy, and by enemy is meant the evil which men do, not the human beings themselves.

  •     T-8-281

  • Real non-co-operation is non-co-operation with evil and not with the evildoer.   

  • T-2-200

  • In a strictly scientific sense God is at the bottom of both good and evil.    

  • TIG-25

  • Tolerance obviously does not disturb the distinction between right and wrong, or good and evil.

  • TIG-66

Evolution

  • Like man, the meaning of great writings suffers evolution.   

  • T-2-311

  • The religion of our conception, thus imperfect, is always subject to a process of evolution and re-interpretation.   

  • TIG-65

Experiments

  • My experiments I hold to be infinitely more important than the best equipped Himalayan expeditions.

  •    MM-8

Exploitation

  • The divorce of intellect from body labour has made us perhaps the shortest-lived, most resourceless and most exploited nation on earth.

  •     T-3-2899

  • Exploitation and domination of one nation over another can have no place in a world striving to put an end to all war.

  •     T-7-2

  • Through the deliverance of India, I seek to deliver the so-called weaker races of the earth from the crushing heels of Western exploitation in which England is the greatest partner.

  •    T-2-327