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84. The Kali Temple

Towards the close of 1928 a Khadi worker wanted Gandhiji to accompany him to Calcutta. "If we could transform Calcutta we should transform the whole of India," the worker argued. Gandhiji would have gone there and made it the centre of all his activities, but he gave out a sorrowful secret which he had harboured in his bosom for many past years. It was the Kali temple. "There lies my difficulty," he said, "I cannot bear the sight of it. My soul rises in rebellion against the cold-blooded in­humanity that goes on there in the name of religion. If I had the strength I would plant myself before the gate 0f the temple and tell those in charge of it that before they sacrificed a single innocent animal they should have to cut my throat. But I know that for me to do so would be unreal, a mechanical thing today because I have not completely overcome the will to live. And till I can do that I must bear the cross of my imperfect existence."