A season for Nonviolence

Mahatma Gandhi nonviolence

The civil rights movement led by Martin Luther King Jr. in the 1950s and '60s was the embodiment of Gandhi's ideas of nonviolent protest.

King often cited Gandhi's influence, and the movement's pivotal 1955 bus boycott in Montgomery, Ala., had all the earmarks of a Gandhian non cooperation campaign.

Linkages between the two men did not end with King's assassination in 1968.This year, a grassroots effort is being organized to mark the deaths of both men, Gandhi on Jan. 30 and King on April 4.

Dubbed the Season of Nonviolence, the effort involves more than 90 communities around the country in activities as distinct as homicide tallies in Dayton, Ohio, and "kindness days" in Detroit, according to project coordinator Barbara Bernstein of the Association for Global New Thought in Evanston, III.

A major kickoff rally is planned at the United Nations in New York with Gandhi's grandson Arun Gandhi, and black leaders Martin Luther King III, Jesse Jackson and Andrew Young.

According to Arun Gandhi, "Although both [Gandhi and King] lived at different times, there was a spiritual bond between the two and we must honour that spiritual bond. Both shared the same dream that people would live in peace and harmony without looking at each other's differences."

» The nuclear tests conducted by India do necessitate a study of what Gandhi thought of efforts to arm India and also the nuclear bomb itself.

(Source : The Mind of Mahatma Gandhi)

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