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118. A Challenge to faith
Q. What should one do in his day-to-day life—that is, what is the minimum programme—so that one can acquire non-violence of the brave?
A. The minimum that is required of a person wishing to cultivate the Ahimsa of the brave is first to clear one's thought of cowardice and in the light of the clearance regulate his conduct in every activity, great or small. Thus the votary must refuse to be cowed down by his superior, without being angry. He must, however, be ready to sacri­fice his post, however remunerative it may be. Whilst sacrificing his all, if the votary has no sense of irritation against his employer, he has Ahimsa of the brave in him. Assume that a fellow passenger threatens my son with assault and I reason with the would-be-assailant who then turns upon me. If then I take his blow with grace and dignity, without harbouring any ill-will against him, I exhibit the Ahimsa of the brave. Such instances are of everyday occurrence and can be easily multiplied. If I succeed in curbing my temper every time and though able to give blow for blow I refrain, I shall develop the Ahimsa of the brave which will never fail me and which will compel recognition from the most confirmed adversaries.
Harijan, 17-11-1946