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GANDHI QUOTES > MOHAN-MALA > December

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December 1
  • Democracy must in essence mean the art and science of mobilizing the entire physical, economic and spiritual resources of all the various sections of the people in the service of the common good of all.
H, 27 May 1939

December 2
  • A born democrat is a born disciplinarian. Democracy comes naturally to him who is habituated normally to yield willing obedience to all laws, human or divine.
Ibid.

December 3
  • Willing submission to social restraint for the sake of the well-being of the whole society enriches both the individual and the society of which one is a member.
Ibid.

December 4
  • The spirit of Democracy is not a mechanical thing to be adjusted by abolition of forms. It requires change of the heart.
YI, 16 March 1927

December 5
  • The spirit of democracy cannot be established in that midst of terrorism whether governmental or popular. In some respects popular terrorism is more antagonistic to the growth of the democratic spirit than the governmental. For the latter strengthens the spirit of democracy, where as the former kills it.
YI, 23 Feb. 1921

December 6
  • Democracy disciplined and enlightened is the finest thing in the world. A democracy, prejudiced, ignorant, superstitious will land itself in the chaos and may be self-destroyed.
YI, 30 July 1931

December 7
  • The democracy of m conception is wholly inconsistent with the use of physical force for enforcing its will.
EF, p. 102

December 8
  • Democracy will break under the strain of apron strings. It can exist only on trust.
DD, p. 136

December 9
  • The highest form of freedom carries with it the greatest measure of discipline and humility. Freedom that comes from discipline and humility cannot be denied; unbridled license is a sign of vulgarity, injurious alike to self and oneís neighbours.
YI, 3 June 1926

December 10
  • When people come into possession of political powers, the interference with the freedom of the people is reduced to a minimum. In other words, a nation that runs its affairs smoothly and effectively without such state interference is truly democratic. Where such a condition is absent, the form of Government is democratic in name.
H, 11 Jan. 1936

December 11
  • Democracy and violence can ill go together. The States that are today nominally democratic have either to become frankly totalitarian or, if they are to become truly democratic, they must become courageously non-violent. It is a blasphemy to say that non-violence can only be practiced by individuals and never by nations which are composed of individuals.
H, 12 Nov. 1938

December 12
  • The true democrat is he who with purely non-violent means defends his liberty and therefore, his countryís and ultimately that of the whole of mankind.
H, 15 April 1939

December 13
  • In matters of conscience, the law of Majority has no place.
YI, 4 Aug. 1920

December 14
  • Let us not push the mandate theory to ridiculous extremes and become slave to resolutions of majorities. That would be a revival of brute force in a more virulent form. If rights of minorities are to be respected, the majority must tolerate and respect their opinion and action. It will be the duty of the majority to see to it that the minorities receive a proper hearing and are not otherwise exposed to insults.
YI, 8 Dec. 1921

December 15
  • The rule of majority has a narrow application, i.e., on should yield to the majority in matters of detail. But it is slavery to be amenable to the majority, no matter what its decisions are.
YI, 2 March 1922

December 16
  • Democracy is not a state in which people act like sheep. Under democracy, individual liberty of opinion and action is jealously guarded. I, therefore, believe that the minority has a perfect right to act differently from the majority.
Ibid.

December 17
  • Keep a child in cotton wools and stunt it or kill it. If you will let it develop into a robust man, you will expose his body to all weathers teaching him how to defy them. Precisely in the same manner, a government worth the name has to show the nation how to face deficits, bad weathers and other handicaps of life through its own collective effort instead of its being effortlessly helped to live anyhow.
DD, p. 242

December 18
  • Possession of power makes men blind and deaf, they cannot see things which are under their very nose and cannot hear things which invade their ears. There is thus no knowing what power-intoxicated government may not do. So patriotic men ought to be prepared for death, imprisonment and similar eventualities.
YI, 13 Oct. 1921

December 19
  • Power that comes from service faithfully rendered ennobles. Power that is sought in the name of service and can only be obtained by a majority of votes is delusion and snare to be avoided.
YI, 11 Sept. 1924

December 20
  • Power is of two kinds. One is obtained by the fear of punishment and the other by arts of love. Power based on love is thousand times more effective and permanent than the one derived from fear of punishment.
YI, 8 Jan. 1925

December 21
  • Whilst power, superimposed, always needs the help of police and military, power generated from within should have little or no us3e for them.
H, 4 Sept. 1937

December 22
  • Those who claim to lead the masses must resolutely refuse to be led by them, if we want to avoid mob law and desire ordered progress for the country. I believe that mere protestation of oneís opinion and surrender to the mass opinion is not only not enough, but in the matters of vital importance, leaders must act contrary to the mass opinion if it does not commend itself to their reason.
YI, 14 July 1920

December 23
  • Love and Ahimsa are matchless in their effect. But, in their play there is no fuss, show, noise or placards. They presuppose self-confidence which in its turn presupposes self-purification. Men of stainless character and self-purification will easily inspire confidence and automatically purify the atmosphere around them.
YI, 6 Sept. 1928

December 24
  • The reformerís path is strewn not with roses, but with thorns, and he has to walk warily. He can but limps, dare not jump.
YI, 28 Nov.1929

December 25
  • The only code that guides a reformer is his own conscience in the last resort. The law would be corrected through the righteous suffering of a few if public opinion had not already secured either correction or disuse.
YI, 7 Feb. 1929

December 26
  • All is well with you even though everything seems to go dead wrong. If you are a square with yourself. Reversely, all is not well with you although everything outwardly may seem to go right, if you are not square with yourself.
H, 20 May 1939

December 27
  • My patriotism is not an exclusive thing. It is all-embracing and I should reject that patriotism which sought to mount upon the distress of the exploitation of other nationalities. The conception of my patriotism is nothing if it is not always, in every case, without exception, consistent with the broadest good of humanity at large.
YI, 4 April 1929

December 28
  • I do not believe that an individual may gain spiritually and those who surround him suffer. I believe in advita, I believe in the essential unity of man and for that matter, of all that lives. Therefore, I believe that if one man gains spiritually, the whole world gains with him and if one man falls the whole world falls to that extent.
YI, 4 Dec. 1924

December 29
  • Mankind is one, seeing that all are equally subject to the moral law. All men are equal in Godís eyes. There are, of course, differences of race and status and the like, but the higher the status of man, the greater is his responsibility.
ER, p. 57

December 30
  • Just as the cult of patriotism teaches us today that the individual has to die for the family, the family has to die for the village the village for the district, the district for the province, and the province for the country, and so a country has to be free in order that it may die, if necessary, for the benefit of the world.
GIV, p. 170

December 31
  • A nation that is capable of limitless sacrifice is capable of rising to limitless heights. The purer the sacrifice the quicker the progress.
YI, 25 Aug. 1920