SELECTED WORKS OF MAHATMA GANDHI >  VOL. IV - SELECTED LETTERS > SECTION ONE : SELECTED LETTERS > From Rabindranath Tagore
26. From Rabindranath Tagore
Visva-Bharati,
Santiniketan, Bengal,
November 15, 1932
DEAR MAHATMAJI,
I can realize the sanctity of the promise given by you to Kelappan, and certainly nobody from outside can presume to criticize any actions that you may decide upon guided by your own direct revelation of truth. What I fear is that following so close upon the tremendous impact made on our consciousness by the recent fast a repetition of it may psychologically be too much for us properly to evaluate and effectively to utilise for the uplift of humanity. The mighty liberating forces set in motion by your fast still continue to operate and spread from village to village, removing age-long iniquities, transforming the harshness of the callously superstitious to a new feeling of sympathy for the distressed. Were I convinced that the movement has suffered any abatement or in any way shows signs of lacunae, I would welcome even the highest sacrifice which humanity today is capable of making, the sacrifice of your life in penance for our sins. But all my experiences, of the activities of the villages around us here, as well as of other localities, convince me that the movement generated by your fast continue to gain in strength and conquer formidable obstacles. The testimony of my friends from all parts of India confirm this truth. It may be that there are reactionary elements but it seems to me that we should allow them time— the pressure of a growing public opinion is sure to win them over. Even as to the Guruvayyur temple if my information is correct, excepting a few misguided individuals, the majority of men is overwhelmingly on the side of reform. I pray and hope that the former will yet yield to sanity and constitutionally remove the legal barriers which seem to stand in the way of reform. Should we take too seriously the activities of some isolated groups of individuals and subject millions of our countrymen to the extremest form of suffering while they themselves are unquestionably on the side of truth ? The influence which is at work may have a check if anything happens to you. Should we risk that possibility now that we have won? These are the thoughts which naturally rise in my mind and I was thinking of putting them before Mahadev when your letter arrived. I shall continue to follow events with my thoughts and prayers and fervently hope that those who now stand in the way of truth will be converted to it.
With reverent love,
Yours,
RABINDRANATH TAGORE

From a photostat: S.N. 18622