Mohandas Gandhi Quotes

Mahatma Karamchand Gandhi was a paragon of virtue, an icon of iconoclasm. He was the type of person who took the world for what it was, took inventory of his own personal power, and then did his absolute best to be the change he wished to see in the world.

You must be the change you wish to see in the world. – Mahatma Gandhi

This is a collection of my favorite Mohandas Gandhi quotes. When I think of Gandhi, I think of non-violence, compassion, conviction, truth, service and sacrifice. He set the gold standard for leading with heart.

Gandhi may not be with us in body, but he’s with us in spirit as his life was his message. His words of wisdom continue to ring true …

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Mohandas Gandhi Quotes

Always aim at complete harmony of thought and word and deed. Always aim at purifying your thoughts and everything will be well. – Mahatma Gandhi

As long as you derive inner help and comfort from anything, keep it. – Mahatma Gandhi

Freedom is not worth having if it does not include the freedom to make mistakes. – Mahatma Gandhi

Hate the sin, love the sinner. – Mahatma Gandhi

Honest differences are often a healthy sign of progress. – Mahatma Gandhi

Honest disagreement is often a good sign of progress. – Mahatma Gandhi

I cannot teach you violence, as I do not myself believe in it. I can only teach you not to bow your heads before any one even at the cost of your life. – Mahatma Gandhi

I want freedom for the full expression of my personality. – Mahatma Gandhi

In the attitude of silence the soul finds the path in a clearer light, and what is elusive and deceptive resolves itself into crystal clearness. Our life is a long and arduous quest after Truth. – Mahatma Gandhi

Indolence is a delightful but distressing state; we must be doing something to be happy. – Mahatma Gandhi

One needs to be slow to form convictions, but once formed they must be defended against the heaviest odds. – Mahatma Gandhi

When I despair, I remember that all through history the ways of truth and love have always won. There have been tyrants, and murderers, and for a time they can seem invincible, but in the end they always fall. Think of it–always. – Mahatma Gandhi

You must be the change you want to see in the world. – Mahatma Gandhi

What difference does it make to the dead, the orphans and the homeless, whether the mad destruction is wrought under the name of totalitarianism or the holy name of liberty or democracy? – Mahatma Gandhi, Non-Violence in Peace and War

Victory attained by violence is tantamount to a defeat, for it is momentary. – Mahatma Gandhi, ‘Satyagraha Leaflet No. 13,’ May 3, 1919

An eye for an eye makes the whole world blind. – Mahatma Gandhi, (attributed)

Freedom is not worth having if it does not connote freedom to err. It passes my comprehension how human beings, be they ever so experienced and able, can delight in depriving other human beings of that precious right. – Mahatma Gandhi, 1931

The moment there is suspicion about a person’s motives, everything he does becomes tainted. – Mahatma Gandhi

Where there is love there is life. – Mahatma Gandhi

Violent men have not been known in history to die to a man. They die up to a point. – Mahatma Gandhi

Truth stands, even if there be no public support. It is self-sustained. – Mahatma Gandhi

Truth never damages a cause that is just. – Mahatma Gandhi

You must be the change you wish to see in the world. – Mahatma Gandhi

The law of sacrifice is uniform throughout the world. To be effective it demands the sacrifice of the bravest and the most spotless. – Mahatma Gandhi

We should meet abuse by forbearance. Human nature is so constituted that if we take absolutely no notice of anger or abuse, the person indulging in it will soon weary of it and stop. – Mahatma Gandhi

You don’t have to burn books to destroy a culture. Just get people to stop reading them. – Mahatma Gandhi

Whatever you do may seem insignificant to you, but it is most important that you do it. – Mahatma Gandhi

Self-respect knows no considerations. – Mahatma Gandhi

Satisfaction lies in the effort, not in the attainment, full effort is full victory. – Mahatma Gandhi

Service which is rendered without joy helps neither the servant nor the served. But all other pleasures and possessions pale into nothingness before service which is rendered in a spirit of joy. – Mahatma Gandhi

Those who know how to think need no teachers. – Mahatma Gandhi

There is more to life than increasing its speed. – Mahatma Gandhi

There is a sufficiency in the world for man’s need but not for man’s greed. – Mahatma Gandhi

The weak can never forgive. Forgiveness is the attribute of the strong. – Mahatma Gandhi

Only he can take great resolves who has indomitable faith in God and has fear of God. – Mahatma Gandhi

Poverty is the worst form of violence. – Mahatma Gandhi

Prayer is a confession of one’s own unworthiness and weakness. – Mahatma Gandhi

Prayer is not an old woman’s idle amusement. Properly understood and applied, it is the most potent instrument of action. – Mahatma Gandhi

Prayer is not asking. It is a longing of the soul. It is daily admission of one’s weakness. It is better in prayer to have a heart without words than words without a heart. – Mahatma Gandhi

Prayer is the key of the morning and the bolt of the evening – Mahatma Gandhi

Though we may know Him by a thousand names, He is one and the same to us all. – Mahatma Gandhi

Those who say religion has nothing to do with politics do not know what religion is. – Mahatma Gandhi

Religion is a matter of the heart. No physical inconvenience can warrant abandonment of one’s own religion. – Mahatma Gandhi

Religion is more than life. Remember that his own religion is the truest to every man even if it stands low in the scales of philosophical comparison. – Mahatma Gandhi

You must not lose faith in humanity. Humanity is an ocean; if a few drops of the ocean are dirty, the ocean does not become dirty. – Mahatma Gandhi

Where love is, there God is also. – Mahatma Gandhi

What is true of the individual will be to-morrow true of the whole nation if individuals will but refuse to lose heart and hope. – Mahatma Gandhi

When I admire the wonders of a sunset or the beauty of the moon, my soul expands in the worship of the creator. – Mahatma Gandhi

Strength does not come from physical capacity. It comes from an indomitable will. – Mahatma Gandhi

What do I think of Western civilization? I think it would be a very good idea. – Mahatma Gandhi

When restraint and courtesy are added to strength, the latter becomes irresistible. – Mahatma Gandhi

What difference does it make to the dead, the orphans, and the homeless, whether the mad destruction is wrought under the name of  totalitarianism or the holy name of liberty or democracy? – Mahatma Gandhi

Man can never be a woman’s equal in the spirit of selfless service with which nature has endowed her. – Mahatma Gandhi

Man falls from the pursuit of the ideal of plan living and high thinking the moment he wants to multiply his daily wants. Man’s happiness really lies in contentment. – Mahatma Gandhi

Man lives freely only by his readiness to die, if need be, at the hands of his brother, never by killing him. – Mahatma Gandhi

Man’s nature is not essentially evil. Brute nature has been know to yield to the influence of love. You must never despair of human nature. – Mahatma Gandhi

Measures must always in a progressive society be held superior to men, who are after all imperfect instruments, working for their fulfilment. – Mahatma Gandhi

Moral authority is never retained by any attempt to hold on to it. It comes without seeking and is retained without effort. – Mahatma Gandhi

The greatness of a nation can be judged by the way its animals are treated. – Mahatma Gandhi

It is my own firm belief that the strength of the soul grows in proportion as you subdue the flesh. – Mahatma Gandhi

It is unwise to be too sure of one’s own wisdom. It is healthy to be reminded that the strongest might weaken and the wisest might err. – Mahatma Gandhi

It is the quality of our work which will please God and not the quantity. – Mahatma Gandhi

Just as a man would not cherish living in a body other than his own, so do nations not like to live under other nations, however noble and great the latter may be. – Mahatma Gandhi

Is it not enough to know the evil to shun it? If not, we should be sincere enough to admit that we love evil too well to give it up. – Mahatma Gandhi

It has always been a mystery to me how men can feel themselves honoured by the humiliation of their fellow beings. – Mahatma Gandh

Are creeds such simple things like the clothes which a man can change at will and put on at will? – Mahatma Gandhi

Creeds are such for which people live for ages and ages. – Mahatma Gandhi

As human beings, our greatness lies not so much in being able to remake the world – that is the myth of the atomic age – as in being able to remake ourselves. – Mahatma Gandhi

It is any day better to stand erect with a broken and bandaged head then to crawl on one’s belly, in order to be able to save one’s head. – Mahatma Gandhi

It is better to be violent, if there is violence in our hearts, than to put on the cloak of nonviolence to cover impotence. – Mahatma Gandhi

It is easy enough to be friendly to one’s friends. But to befriend the one who regards himself as your enemy is the quintessence of true religion. The other is mere business. – Mahatma Gandhi

Let everyone try and find that as a result of daily prayer he adds something new to his life, something with which nothing can be compared. – Mahatma Gandhi

All compromise is based on give and take, but there can be no give and take on fundamentals. Any compromise on mere fundamentals is a surrender. For it is all give and no take. – Mahatma Gandhi

Among the many misdeeds of the British rule in India, history will look upon the act depriving a whole nation of arms as the blackest. – Mahatma Gandhi

Mohandas Gandhi Quotes

An eye for eye only ends up making the whole world blind. – Mahatma Gandhi

A weak man is just by accident. A strong but non-violent man is unjust by accident. – Mahatma Gandhi

A vow is a purely religious act which cannot be taken in a fit of passion. It can be taken only with a mind purified and composed and with God as witness. – Mahatma Gandhi

Faith… must be enforced by reason… when faith becomes blind it dies. – Mahatma Gandhi

Constant development is the law of life, and a man who always tries to maintain his dogmas in order to appear consistent drives himself into a false position. – Mahatma Gandhi

A policy is a temporary creed liable to be changed, but while it holds good it has got to be pursued with apostolic zeal. – Mahatma Gandhi

A principle is the expression of perfection, and as imperfect beings like us cannot practise perfection, we devise every moment limits of its compromise in practice. – Mahatma Gandhi

A small body of determined spirits fired by an unquenchable faith in their mission can alter the course of history. – Mahatma Gandhi

A religion that takes no account of practical affairs and does not help to solve them is no religion. – Mahatma Gandhi

The good man is the friend of all living things. – Mahatma Gandhi

Intolerance is itself a form of violence and an obstacle to the growth of a true democratic spirit. – Mahatma Gandhi

Intolerance betrays want of faith in one’s cause. – Mahatma Gandhi

Capital as such is not evil; it is its wrong use that is evil. Capital in some form or other will always be needed. – Mahatma Gandhi

But for my faith in God, I should have been a raving maniac. – Mahatma Gandhi

Commonsense is the realised sense of proportion. – Mahatma Gandhi

Before the throne of the Almighty, man will be judged not by his acts but by his intentions. For God alone reads our hearts. – Mahatma Gandhi

Interdependence is and ought to be as much the ideal of man as self-sufficiency. Man is a social being. – Mahatma Gandhi

Infinite striving to be the best is man’s duty; it is its own reward. – Mahatma Gandhi

Everything else is in God’s hands. – Mahatma Gandhi

Increase of material comforts, it may be generally laid down, does not in any way whatsoever conduce to moral growth. – Mahatma Gandhi

Nobody can hurt me without my permission. – Mahatma Gandhi

Non-cooperation with evil is as much a duty as is cooperation with good. – Mahatma Gandhi

No culture can live if it attempts to be exclusive. – Mahatma Gandhi

Morality which depends upon the helplessness of a man or woman has not much to recommend it. Morality is rooted in the purity of our hearts.

My religion is based on truth and non-violence. Truth is my God. – Mahatma Gandhi

Non-violence is the means of realising Him. – Mahatma Gandhi

Morality is the basis of things and truth is the substance of all morality. – Mahatma Gandhi

Non-violence, which is the quality of the heart, cannot come by an appeal to the brain. – Mahatma Gandhi

Non-violence requires a double faith, faith in God and also faith in man. – Mahatma Gandhi

Morality is contraband in war. – Mahatma Gandhi

If patience is worth anything, it must endure to the end of time. And a living faith will last in the midst of the blackest storm. – Mahatma Gandhi

If we are to teach real peace in this world, and if we are to carry on a real war against war, we shall have to begin with the children. – Mahatma Gandhi

Imitation is the sincerest flattery. – Mahatma Gandhi

In a gentle way, you can shake the world. – Mahatma Gandhi

I suppose leadership at one time meant muscles; but today it means getting along with people. – Mahatma Gandhi

I will far rather see the race of man extinct than that we should become less than beasts by making the noblest of God’s creation, woman, the object of our lust. – Mahatma Gandhi

I would heartily welcome the union of East and West provided it is not based on brute force. – Mahatma Gandhi

If co-operation is a duty, I hold that non-co-operation also under certain conditions is equally a duty. – Mahatma Gandhi

One’s own religion is after all a matter between oneself and one’s Maker and no one else’s. – Mahatma Gandhi

I know, to banish anger altogether from one’s breast is a difficult task. It cannot be achieved through pure personal effort. It can be done only by God’s grace. – Mahatma Gandhi

I like your Christ, I do not like your Christians. Your Christians are so unlike your Christ. – Mahatma Gandhi

I have worshipped woman as the living embodiment of the spirit of service and sacrifice. – Mahatma Gandhi

I look only to the good qualities of men. Not being faultless myself, I won’t presume to probe into the faults of others. – Mahatma Gandhi

I object to violence because when it appears to do good, the good is only temporary; the evil it does is permanent. – Mahatma Gandhi

I claim that human mind or human society is not divided into watertight compartments called social, political and religious. All act and react upon one another. – Mahatma Gandhi

I have also seen children successfully surmounting the effects of an evil inheritance. That is due to purity being an inherent attribute of the soul. – Mahatma Gandhi

I do all the evil I can before I learn to shun it? Is it not enough to know the evil to shun it? If not, we should be sincere enough to admit that we love evil too well to give it up. – Mahatma Gandhi

Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do are in harmony. – Mahatma Gandhi

God, as Truth, has been for me a treasure beyond price. May He be so to every one of us. – Mahatma Gandhi

God sometimes does try to the uttermost those whom he wishes to bless. – Mahatma Gandhi

God is, even though the whole world deny him. Truth stands, even if there be no public support. It is self-sustained. – Mahatma Gandhi

Glory lies in the attempt to reach one’s goal and not in reaching it. – Mahatma Gandhi

Healthy discontent is the prelude to progress. – Mahatma Gandhi

Honest disagreement is often a good sign of progress – Mahatma Gandhi

I believe in equality for everyone, except reporters and photographers. – Mahatma Gandhi

I believe that a man is the strongest soldier for daring to die unarmed. – Mahatma Gandhi

For me every ruler is alien that defies public opinion. – Mahatma Gandhi

Freedom is never dear at any price. It is the breath of life. What would a man not pay for living ? – Mahatma Gandhi

A nation’s culture resides in the hearts and in the soul of its people. – Mahatma Gandhi

I like your Christ. I do not like your Christians. Your Christians are so unlike your Christ. – Mahatma Gandhi

Speak only if it improves upon the silence. – Mahatma Gandhi

Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever. – Mahatma Gandhi

There are many causes I would die for. There is not a single cause I would kill for. – Mahatma Gandhi

You should be the change that you want to see in the world. – Mahatma Gandhi

To believe in something, and not live it, is dishonest. – Mahatma Gandhi

An eye for an eye will make the whole world blind. – Mahatma Gandhi

The Story of My Experiments with Truth – Mahatma Gandhi

First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win. – Mahatma Gandhi

Seven social sins: politics without principles, wealth without work, pleasure without conscience, knowledge without character, commerce without morality, science without humanity, and worship without sacrifice. – Mahatma Gandhi

Earth provides enough to satisfy every man’s need, but not any man’s greed. – Mahatma Gandhi

Find purpose, the means will follow. – Mahatma Gandhi

A ‘No’ uttered from the deepest conviction is better than a ‘Yes’ merely uttered to please, or worse, to avoid trouble. – Mahatma Gandhi

A coward is incapable of exhibiting love; it is the prerogative of the brave. – Mahatma Gandhi

A customer is the most important visitor on our premises. He is not dependent on us. We are dependent on him. He is not an interruption in our work. He is the purpose of it. He is not an outsider in our business. He is part of it. We are not doing him a favor by serving him. He is doing us a favor by giving us an opportunity to do so. – Mahatma Gandhi

The Rich must live more simply so that the Poor may simply live. – Mahatma Gandhi

Why change the world when we can change ourselves? – Mahatma Gandhi

There is no way to peace; peace is the way. – Mahatma Gandhi

Hate the sin and love the sinner. Traditional saying – not first said by him. – Mahatma Gandhi

Whatever you do will be insignificant, but it is very important that you do it. – Mahatma Gandhi

The most heinous and the most cruel crimes of which history has record have been committed under the cover of religion or equally noble motives. – Mahatma Gandhi

We must respect other religions, even as we respect our own. Mere tolerance thereof is not enough. – Mahatma Gandhi

Yes I am, I am also a Muslim, a Christian, a Buddhist, and a Jew. When asked if he was a Hindu. – Mahatma Gandhi

I came to the conclusion long ago … that all religions were true and also that all had some error in them, and whilst I hold by my own, I should hold others as dear as Hinduism. So we can only pray, if we are Hindus, not that a Christian should become a Hindu … But our innermost prayer should be a Hindu should be a better Hindu, a Muslim a better Muslim, a Christian a better Christian. – Mahatma Gandhi

I consider western Christianity in its practical working a negation of Christ’s Christianity. – Mahatma Gandhi

My effort should never be to undermine another’s faith but to make him a better follower of his own faith. – Mahatma Gandhi

I object to violence because when it appears to do good, the good is only temporary; the evil it does is permanent. – Mahatma Gandhi

Whenever you are confronted with an opponent, conquer him with love. – Mahatma Gandhi

Even If I am a minority of one, truth is still the truth. – Mahatma Gandhi

I think it would be a good idea! In reply to a reporter’s question What do you think of Western Civilization? – Mahatma Gandhi

You must not lose faith in humanity. Humanity is an ocean; if a few drops of the ocean are dirty, the ocean does not become dirty. – Mahatma Gandhi

Mohandas Gandhi Quotes

Satisfaction does not come with achievement, but with effort. Full effort is full victory. – Mahatma Gandhi

The sayings of Muhammad are a treasure of wisdom not only for Muslims but for all of mankind. – Mahatma Gandhi

It is my firm opinion that Europe does not represent the spirit of God or Christianity but the spirit of Satan. And Satan’s successes are the greatest when he appears with the name of God on his lips. – Mahatma Gandhi

I worship God as Truth only. I have not yet found Him, but I am seeking after Him. – Mahatma Gandhi

When I despair, I remember that all through history the way of truth and love has always won. There have been tyrants and murderers and for a time they seem invincible, but in the end, they always fall – think of it, always. – Mahatma Gandhi

To call woman the weaker sex is a libel; it is man’s injustice to woman. If by strength is meant brute strength, then, indeed, is woman less brute than man. If by strength is meant moral power, then woman is immeasurably man’s superior. Has she not greater intuition, is she not more self-sacrificing, has she not greater powers of endurance, has she not greater courage? Without her, man could not be. If nonviolence is the law of our being, the future is with woman. Who can make a more effective appeal to the heart than woman? – Mahatma Gandhi

My life is my message. – Mahatma Gandhi

If we were to drive out the English with the weapons with which they enslaved us, our slavery would still be with us even when they have gone. – Mahatma Gandhi

We cannot be speakers who do not listen. But neither can we be listeners who do not speak. – Mahatma Gandhi

The ideally non-violent state will be an ordered anarchy. – Mahatma Gandhi

The difference between what we do and what we are capable of doing would suffice to solve most of the world’s problem. – Mahatma Gandhi

The cause of liberty becomes a mockery if the price to be paid is the wholesale destruction of those who are to enjoy liberty. – Mahatma Gandhi

I am a Hindu because it is Hinduism which makes the world worth living. I am a Hindu hence I Love not only human beings, but all living beings. – Mahatma Gandhi

Nonviolence is the first article of my faith. It is also the last article of my creed. Opening words of speech in defense trial, 1922. – Mahatma Gandhi

Everyone wants to be strong and self sufficient, but nobody is willing to put in the work necessary to achieve these goals. – Mahatma Gandhi

Let us all be brave enough to die the death of a martyr, but let no one lust for martyrdom. – Mahatma Gandhi

Truth resides in every human heart, and one has to search for it there, and to be guided by truth as one sees it. But no one has a right to coerce others to act according to his own view of the truth. – Mahatma Gandhi

Use truth as your anvil, nonviolence as your hammer and anything that does not stand the test when it is brought to the anvil of truth and hammered with nonviolence, reject it. – Mahatma Gandhi

Truth alone will endure; all the rest will be swept away before the tide of time. – Mahatma Gandhi

Whether humanity will consciously follow the law of love, I do not know. But that need not disturb me. The law will work just as the law of gravitation works, whether we accept it or not. The person who discovered the law of love was a far greater scientist than any of our modern scientists. Only our explorations have not gone far enough and so it is not possible for everyone to see all its workings. – Mahatma Gandhi

Corruption ought not to be an inevitable product of democracy. – Mahatma Gandhi

What difference does it make to the dead, the orphans and the homeless, whether the mad destruction is wrought under the name of totalitarianism or the holy name of liberty or democracy? – Mahatma Gandhi

Hinduism has made marvelous discoveries in things of religion, of the spirit, of the soul. We have no eye for these great and fine discoveries. We are dazzled by the material progress that Western science has made. Ancient India has survived because Hinduism was not developed along material but spiritual lines. – Mahatma Gandhi

The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated. – Mahatma Gandhi

The King was wearing enough for the both of us. On Showing up to meet His Majesty King Edward VII of England in just a loincloth, a reporter wondered aloud if this was disrespectful to the king. – Mahatma Gandhi

I do not believe in the doctrine of the greatest good of the greatest number. The only real, dignified, human doctrine is the greatest good of all.

If love or non-violence be not the law of our being, the whole of my argument falls to pieces. – Mahatma Gandhi

Hinduism insists on the brotherhood of not only all mankind but of all that lives. – Mahatma Gandhi

It is impossible for me to reconcile myself to the idea of conversion after the style that goes on in India and elsewhere today. It is an error which is perhaps the greatest impediment to the world’s progress toward peace … Why should a Christian want to convert a Hindu to Christianity? Why should he not be satisfied if the Hindu is a good or godly man? – Mahatma Gandhi

I do not want my house to be walled in on sides and my windows to be stuffed. I want the cultures of all the lands to be blown about my house as freely as possible. But I refuse to be blown off my feet by any. – Mahatma Gandhi

The spirit of democracy cannot be imposed from without. It has to come from within. – Mahatma Gandhi

All my actions have their rise in my inalienable love of mankind. – Mahatma Gandhi

I appeal for cessation of hostilities … because war is bad in essence. You want to kill Nazism. Your soldiers are doing the same work of destruction as the Germans. The only difference is that perhaps yours are not as thorough as the Germans … I venture to present you with a nobler and a braver way, worthy of the bravest soldiers. I want you to fight Nazism without arms or … with non-violent arms. I would like you to lay down the arms you have as being useless for saving you or humanity. You will invite Herr Hitler and Signor Mussolini to take what they want of the countries you call your possessions. Let them take possession of your beautiful island, with your many beautiful buildings. You will give all these but neither your souls, nor your minds. If these gentlemen choose to occupy your homes, you will vacate them. If they do not give you free passage out, you will allow yourself, man, woman and child, to be slaughtered, but you will refuse to owe allegiance to them … I am telling His Excellency the Viceroy that my services are at the disposal of His Majesty’s Government, should they consider them of any practical use in advancing the object of my appeal. – Mahatma Gandhi, Appeal To Every Briton (1940).

I regard myself as a soldier, though a soldier of peace. – Mahatma Gandhi

If one has no affection for a person or a system, one should feel free to give the fullest expression to his disaffection so long as he does not contemplate, promote, or incite violence. March 18, 1922, during his trial for exciting disaffection toward His Majesty’s Government as established by law in India. – Mahatma Gandhi

That which looks for mercy from an opponent is not non-violence. – Mahatma Gandhi

Hinduism is a living organism liable to growth and decay subject to the laws of Nature. One and indivisible at the root, it has grown into a vast tree with innumerable branches. The changes in the season affect it. It has its autumn and its summer, its winter and its spring. It is, and is not, based on scriptures. It does not derive its authority from one book. Non violence has found the highest expression and application in Hinduism.

There are many causes that I am prepared to die for but no causes that I am prepared to kill for. – Mahatma Gandhi

Palestine belongs to the Arabs in the same sense that England belongs to the English or France to the French. It is wrong and unhuman to impose the Jews on the Arabs. – Mahatma Gandhi

I have been known as a crank, faddist, madman. Evidently the reputation is well deserved. For wherever I go, I draw to myself cranks, faddists, and madmen. – Mahatma Gandhi

Non-violent resistance implies the very opposite of weakness. Defiance combined with non-retaliatory acceptance of repression from one’s opponents is active, not passive. It requires strength, and there is nothing automatic or intuitive about the resoluteness required for using non-violent methods in political struggle and the quest for Truth. – Mahatma Gandhi

I can combine the greatest love with the greatest opposition to wrong. – Mahatma Gandhi

But in all my trials – of a spiritual nature, as a lawyer, in conducting institutions, and in politics – I can say that God d me. When every hope is gone, ‘when helpers fail and comforts flee’, I experience that help arrives somehow, from I know not where. – Mahatma Gandhi

My whole soul rebels against the idea that Hinduism and Islam represent two antagonistic cultures and doctrines. To assent to such a doctrine is for me a denial of God. – Mahatma Gandhi

In the secret of my heart I am in perpetual quarrel with God that He should allow such things [as the war] to go on. My non-violence seems almost impotent. But the answer comes at the end of the daily quarrel that neither God nor non-violence is impotent. Impotence is in men. I must try on without losing faith even though I may break in the attempt. – Mahatma Gandhi

The truth is that God is the force. He is the essence of life. He is pure and undefiled consciousness. He is eternal. – Mahatma Gandhi

The cry for the national home for the Jews does not make much appeal to me. The sanction for it is sought in the Bible and the tenacity with which the Jews have hankered after return to Palestine. Why should they not, like other peoples of the earth, make that country their home where they are born and where they earn their livelihood? – Mahatma Gandhi

I believe that the civilisation into which India has evolved is not to be beaten in the world. Nothing can equal the seeds sown by our ancestry. Rome went; Greece shared the same fate; the might of the Pharaohs was broken; Japan has become westernised; of China nothing can be said; but India is still, somehow or other, sound at the foundation. – Mahatma Gandhi

I am unable to identify with orthodox Christianity. I must tell you in all humility that Hinduism, as I know it, entirely satisfies my soul, fills my whole being, and I find solace in the Bhagavad Gita and the Upanishads that I miss even in the Sermon on the Mount….I must confess to you that when doubts haunt me, when disappointments stare me in the face, and when I see not one ray of light on the horizon I turn to the Bhagavad Gita, and find a verse to comfort me; and I immediately begin to smile in the midst of overwhelming sorrow. My life has been full of external tragedies and if they have not left any visible and indelible effect on me, I owe it to the teachings of the Bhagavad Gita.

Democracy must in essence, therefore, 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. – Mahatma Gandhi

When I despair, I remember that all through history the way of truth and love has always won. There have been tyrants and murderers and for a time they seem invincible, but in the end, they always fall. – Mahatma Gandhi

I do believe that where there is a choice between only cowardice and violence, I would advise violence… – Mahatma Gandhi

Hinduism is a relentless pursuit of Truth. Truth is God and if today it has become moribund, inactive, irresponsive to growth, it is because we are fatigued; and as soon as the fatigue is over, Hinduism will burst upon the world with brilliance perhaps unknown before. – Mahatma Gandhi

I have no other wish in this world but to find light and joy and peace through Hinduism. – Mahatma Gandhi

When the missionary of another religion goes to them, he goes like a vendor of goods. He has no special spiritual merit that will distinguish him from those to whom he goes. He does however possess material goods which he promises to those who will come to his fold. – Mahatma Gandhi

Among the many misdeeds of the British rule in India, history will look upon the act of depriving a whole nation of arms, as the blackest. – Mahatma Gandhi

In spite of despair staring me in the face on the political horizon, I have never lost my peace. In fact, I have found people who envy my peace. That peace, I tell you, comes from prayer; I am not a man of learning, but I humbly claim to be a man of prayer. I am indifferent as to the form. Every one is a law unto himself in that respect. But there are some well-marked roads, and it is safe to walk along the beaten tracks, trod by the ancient teachers. – Mahatma Gandhi

Hindu Dharma is like a boundless ocean teeming with priceless gems. The deeper you dive the more treasures you find. – Mahatma Gandhi

On examination, I have found it to be the most tolerant of all religions known to me. Its freedom from dogma makes a forcible appeal to me inasmuch as it gives the votary the largest scope for self-expression. – Mahatma Gandhi

As soon as we lose moral basis, we cease to be religious. There is no such thing as religion overriding man, for instance cannot be untruthful, cruel, or incontinent and claim to have God in his side. – Mahatma Gandhi

Mohandas Gandhi Quotes

  • One thing we have endeavoured to observe most scrupulously, namely, never to depart from the strictest facts and, in dealing with the difficult questions that have arisen during the year, we hope that we have used the utmost moderation possible under the circumstances. Our duty is very simple and plain. We want to serve the community, and in our own humble way to serve the Empire. We believe in the righteousness of the cause, which it is our privilege to espouse. We have an abiding faith in the mercy of the Almighty God, and we have firm faith in the British Constitution. That being so, we should fail in our duty if we wrote anything with a view to hurt. Facts we would always place before our readers, whether they are palatable or not, and it is by placing them constantly before the public in their nakedness that the misunderstanding between the two communities in South Africa can be removed.
    • Indian Opinion (1 October 1903)
  • A man is but the product of his thoughts. What he thinks, he becomes.
    • In Ethical Religion, (Madras: S. Ganesan, 1922), Chapter 6, p. 61.
  • Why, of all places in Johannesburg, the Indian location should be chosen for dumping down all kaffirs of the town, passes my comprehension. Of course, under my suggestion, the Town Council must withdraw the Kaffirs from the Location. About this mixing of the Kaffirs with the Indians I must confess I feel most strongly. I think it is very unfair to the Indian population, and it is an undue tax on even the proverbial patience of my countrymen.
    • Letter to Dr. Porter, Medical Officer of Health for Johannesburg (15 February 1905); later published in The Indian Opinion.
  • In this instance of the fire-arms, the Asiatic has been most improperly bracketed with the native. The British Indian does not need any such restrictions as are imposed by the Bill on the natives regarding the carrying of fire-arms. The prominent race can remain so by preventing the native from arming himself. Is there a slightest vestige of justification for so preventing the British Indian?
    • Comments on a court case in The Indian Opinion (25 March 1905)
  • You say that the magistrate’s decision is unsatisfactory because it would enable a person, however unclean, to travel by a tram, and that even the Kaffirs would be able to do so. But the magistrate’s decision is quite different. The Court declared that the Kaffirs have no legal right to travel by tram. And according to tram regulations, those in an unclean dress or in a drunken state are prohibited from boarding a tram. Thanks to the Court’s decision, only clean Indians or coloured people other than Kaffirs, can now travel in the trams.
    • Comments on a court case in The Indian Opinion (2 June 1906)
  • Leo Tolstoy‘s life has been devoted to replacing the method of violence for removing tyranny or securing reform by the method of non­resistance to evil. He would meet hatred expressed in violence by love expressed in self­suffering. He admits of no exception to whittle down this great and divine law of love. He applies it to all the problems that trouble mankind.
    • Introduction to the publication of Tolstoy’s A Letter to a Hindu (1909)
  • Victory attained by violence is tantamount to a defeat, for it is momentary.
    • Satyagraha Leaflet No. 13 ( 3 May 1919)
  • I came in contact with every known Indian anarchist in London. Their bravery impressed me, but I felt that their zeal was misguided. I felt that violence was no remedy for India’s ills, and that her civilisation required the use of a different and higher weapon for self-protection.
    • “A Word of Explanation” on his work Hind Swaraj (1908) in Young India (January 1921)
  • If India adopted the doctrine of love as an active part of her religion and introduced it in her politics. Swaraj would descend upon India from heaven. But I am painfully aware that that event is far off as yet.
    • “A Word of Explanation” in Young India (January 1921)
  • I have even seen the writings suggesting that I am playing a deep game, that I am using the present turmoil to foist my fads on India, and am making religious experiments at India’s expense. I can only answer that Satyagraha is made of sterner stuff. There is nothing reserved and nothing secret in it.
    • “A Word of Explanation” in Young India (January 1921)
  • I claim that in losing the spinning wheel we lost our left lung. We are, therefore, suffering from galloping consumption. The restoration of the wheel arrests the progress of the fell disease.
    • The Great Sentinel in Young India (13 October 1921)
  • The only tyrant I accept in this world is the “still small voice” within me. And even though I have to face the prospect of being a minority of one, I humbly believe I have the courage to be in such a hopeless minority.
    • In Young India (2 March 1922). Quoted in The Essential Gandhi: An Anthology of His Writings on His Life, Work, and Ideas edited by Louis Fischer (2002), p. 160.
  • If one has no affection for a person or a system, one should feel free to give the fullest expression to his disaffection so long as he does not contemplate, promote, or incite violence.
    • Statement during his trial for “exciting disaffection toward His Majesty’s Government as established by law in India” (18 March 1922)
  • Nonviolence is the first article of my faith. It is also the last article of my creed.
    • Opening words of his defense speech at his trial Young India (23 March 1922)
  • I wanted to know the best of the life of one (Muhammad) who holds today an undisputed sway over the hearts of millions of mankind. I became more than ever convinced that it was not the sword that won a place for Islam in those days in the scheme of life. It was the rigid simplicity, the utter self-effacement of the Prophet the scrupulous regard for pledges, his intense devotion to his friends and followers, his intrepidity, his fearlessness, his absolute trust in God and in his own mission. These and not the sword carried everything before them and surmounted every obstacle.
    • Young India (23 September 1924) Collected Works of Mahatma Gandhi, vol.29, “My Jail experiences”, p.133
  • Seven social sins: politics without principles, wealth without work, pleasure without conscience, knowledge without character, commerce without morality, science without humanity, and worship without sacrifice.
    • A list closing an article in Young India (22 October 1925); Collected Works of Mahatma Gandhi Vol. 33 (PDF) p. 135
    • Variant: The seven blunders that human society commits and cause all the violence: wealth without work, pleasure without conscience, knowledge without character, commerce without morality, science without humanity, worship without sacrifice, and politics without principles.
      • A written list given to his departing grandson Arun Gandhi (October 1947), as quoted in Marriot (Spring 1998). Some alternative or erroneous translations exist that use intros “There are seven sins in the world:”, “Seven Blunders of the world:”, “The things that will destroy us are”, and items “politics without principle”, “education without character”, or “business without morality”.
  • The cry for peace will be a cry in the wilderness, so long as the spirit of nonviolence does not dominate millions of men and women.
    An armed conflict between nations horrifies us. But the economic war is no better than an armed conflict. This is like a surgical operation. An economic war is prolonged torture. And its ravages are no less terrible than those depicted in the literature on war properly so called. We think nothing of the other because we are used to its deadly effects. …
    The movement against war is sound. I pray for its success. But I cannot help the gnawing fear that the movement will fail if it does not touch the root of all evil — man’s greed.

    • “Non-Violence — The Greatest Force” in The World Tomorrow (5 October 1926)
  • I have been known as a crank, faddist, madman. Evidently the reputation is well deserved. For wherever I go, I draw to myself cranks, faddists, and madmen.
    • Young India (13 June 1929); also in All Men Are Brothers : Autobiographical Reflections (2005) edited by Krishna Kripalani, p. 163
  • The weak can never forgive. Forgiveness is the attribute of the strong.
    • “Interview to the Press” in Karachi about the execution of Bhagat Singh (23 March 1931); published in Young India (2 April 1931), reprinted in Collected Works of Mahatma Gandhi Online Vol. 51. Gandhi begins by making a statement on his failure “to bring about the commutation of the death sentence of Bhagat Singh and his friends.” He is asked two questions. First: “Do you not think it impolitic to forgive a government which has been guilty of a thousand murders?” Gandhi replies: “I do not know a single instance where forgiveness has been found so wanting as to be impolitic.” In a follow-up question, Gandhi is asked: “But no country has ever shown such forgiveness as India is showing to Britain?” Gandhi replies: “That does not affect my reply. What is true of individuals is true of nations. One cannot forgive too much. The weak can never forgive. Forgiveness is the attribute of the strong.”
  • An error does not become truth by reason of multiplied propagation, nor does truth become error because nobody sees it. Truth stands, even if there be no public support. It is self sustained.
    • Young India 1924-1926 (1927), p. 1285
  • I’m a lover of my own liberty, and so I would do nothing to restrict yours. I simply want to please my own conscience, which is God.
    • Young India (21 January 1927)
  • I came to the conclusion long ago … that all religions were true and also that all had some error in them, and whilst I hold by my own, I should hold others as dear as Hinduism. So we can only pray, if we are Hindus, not that a Christian should become a Hindu … But our innermost prayer should be a Hindu should be a better Hindu, a Muslim a better Muslim, a Christian a better Christian.
    • Young India (19 January 1928)
  • To call woman the weaker sex is a libel; it is man’s injustice to woman. If by strength is meant brute strength, then, indeed, is woman less brute than man. If by strength is meant moral power, then woman is immeasurably man’s superior. Has she not greater intuition, is she not more self-sacrificing, has she not greater powers of endurance, has she not greater courage? Without her, man could not be. If nonviolence is the law of our being, the future is with woman. Who can make a more effective appeal to the heart than woman?
    • Young India (4 October 1930)
  • On all occasions of trial He has saved me. I know that the phrase ‘God saved me’ has a deeper meaning for me today, and still I feel that I have not yet grasped its entire meaning. Only richer experience can help me to a fuller understanding.
    But in all my trials — of a spiritual nature, as a lawyer, in conducting institutions, and in politics — I can say that God saved me. When every hope is gone, ‘when helpers fail and comforts flee’, I experience that help arrives somehow, from I know not where.

    • Young India (24 April 1931), p. 274
  • It is beyond my power to induce in you a belief in God. There are certain things which are self proved and certain which are not proved at all. The existence of God is like a geometrical axiom. It may be beyond our heart grasp. I shall not talk of an intellectual grasp. Intellectual attempts are more or less failures, as a rational explanation cannot give you the faith in a living God. For it is a thing beyond the grasp of reason. It transcends reason. There are numerous phenomena from which you can reason out the existence of God, but I shall not insult your intelligence by offering you a rational explanation of that type. I would have you brush aside all rational explanations and begin with a simple childlike faith in God. If I exist, God exists. With me it is a necessity of my being as it is with millions. They may not be able to talk about it, but from their life you can see that it is a part of their life. I am only asking you to restore the belief that has been undermined. In order to do so, you have to unlearn a lot of literature that dazzles your intelligence and throws you off your feet. Start with the faith which is also a token of humility and an admission that we know nothing, that we are less than atoms in this universe. We are less than atoms, I say, because the atom obeys the law of its being, whereas we in the insolence of our ignorance deny the law of nature. But I have no argument to address to those who have no faith.
    • Young India (24 September 1931); also in Teachings Of Mahatma Gandhi (1945), edited by Jag Parvesh Chander, p. 458
  • England has got successful competitors in America, Japan, France, Germany. It has competitors in the handful of mills in India, and as there has been an awakening in India, even so there will be an awakening in South Africa with its vastly richer resources — natural , mineral and human. The mighty English look quite pigmies before the mighty races of Africa. They are noble savages after all, you will say. They are certainly noble, but no savages and in the course of a few years the Western nations may cease to find in Africa a dumping ground for their wares.
  • Statement at Oxford (24 October 1931), published in Young India Vol. 13 (1931), p. 355
  • If we are to reach real peace in this world and if we are to carry on a real war against war, we shall have to begin with children; and if they will grow up in their natural innocence, we won’t have to struggle, we won’t have to pass fruitless idle resolutions. But we shall go from love to love and peace to peace, until at last all the corners of the world are covered with that peace and love for which, consciously or unconsciously, the whole world is hungering.
    • Young India (19 November 1931, p. 361)
  • I regard myself as a soldier, though a soldier of peace.
    • Speech at Victoria Hall, Geneva (10 December 1931)
  • For me the voice of God, of Conscience, of Truth or the Inner Voice or ‘the still small Voice’ mean one and the same thing. I saw no form. I have never tried, for I have always believed God to be without form. One who realizes God is freed from sin for ever…. But what I did hear was like a Voice from afar and yet quite near. It was as unmistakable as some human voice definitely speaking to me, and irresistible. I was not dreaming at the time I heard the Voice. The hearing of the Voice was preceded by a terrific struggle within me. Suddenly the Voice came upon me. I listened, made certain that it was the Voice, and the struggle ceased. I was calm. The determination was made accordingly, the date and the hour of the fast were fixed…. Could I give any further evidence that it was truly the Voice that I heard and that it was not an echo of my own heated imagination? I have no further evidence to convince the sceptic. He is free to say that it was all self-delusion or hallucination. It may well have been so. I can offer no proof to the contrary. But I can say this — that not the unanimous verdict of the whole world against me could shake me from the belief that what I heard was the true voice of God.
    • Harijan (1933, July 8); also in Collected Works of Mahatma Gandhi (Vol. 61), and in The Mind of Mahatma Gandhi (Prabhu and Rao, eds., 1967, pp. 33-34)
  • I worship God as Truth only. I have not yet found Him, but I am seeking after Him.
    • An Autobiography (1936); also in All Men Are Brothers : Autobiographical Reflections (2005) edited by Krishna Kripalani, p. 63
  • It is impossible for me to reconcile myself to the idea of conversion after the style that goes on in India and elsewhere today. It is an error which is perhaps the greatest impediment to the world’s progress toward peace … Why should a Christian want to convert a Hindu to Christianity? Why should he not be satisfied if the Hindu is a good or godly man?
    • Harijan (30 January 1937)
  • If there ever could be a justifiable war in the name of and for humanity, a war against Germany, to prevent the wanton persecution of a whole race, would be completely justified. But I do not believe in any war. A discussion of the pros and cons of such a war is therefore outside my horizon or province.
    • Letter in Harijan (1938)
  • The cry for the national home for the Jews does not make much appeal to me. The sanction for it is sought in the Bible and the tenacity with which the Jews have hankered after return to Palestine. Why should they not, like other peoples of the earth, make that country their home where they are born and where they earn their livelihood?
    • Gandhi’s Collected Works, Vol 74 (1938)
  • Palestine belongs to the Arabs in the same sense that England belongs to the English or France to the French. It is wrong and in-human to impose the Jews on the Arabs.
    • Gandhi’s Collected Works, Vol 74 (1938)
  • Among the many misdeeds of the British rule in India, history will look upon the act of depriving a whole nation of arms, as the blackest.
    • Gandhi, An Autobiography, p. 446 (Beacon Press paperback edition)
  • It is unwise to be too sure of one’s own wisdom. It is healthy to be reminded that the strongest might weaken and the wisest might err.
    • Harijan (17 February 1940)
  • I do not want to see the allies defeated. But I do not consider Hitler to be as bad as he is depicted. He is showing an ability that is amazing and seems to be gaining his victories without much bloodshed. Englishmen are showing the strength that Empire builders must have. I expect them to rise much higher than they seem to be doing.
    • Letter to Rajkumari Amrit Kaur, regarding the military situation between England and Germany (May 1940), quoted in Collected Works (1958), p. 70. It should be noted that in May 1940 the battles of World War II were just beginning after the German invasion of Poland. The subsequent blitzkrieg invasions of The Netherlands, Belgium, Luxembourg, and France, were indeed swift and relatively bloodless compared to the trench battles of the First World War, and the persecution of the Jews in the eyes of the world was at this point limited to deprivation of civil rights, and the use of concentration camps and ghettos: the facts of Nazi genocidal strategies were not widely known until towards the end of that war, in 1945.
  • Whatever Hitler may ultimately prove to be, we know what Hitlerism has come to mean, It means naked, ruthless force reduced to an exact science and worked with scientific precision. In its effect it becomes almost irresistible.
    Hitlerism will never be defeated by counter-Hitlerism. It can only breed superior Hitlerism raised to nth degree. What is going on before our eyes is the demonstration of the futility of violence as also of Hitlerism.
    What will Hitler do with his victory? Can he digest so much power? Personally he will go as empty-handed as his not very remote predecessor Alexander. For the Germans he will have left not the pleasure of owning a mighty empire but the burden of sustaining its crushing weight. For they will not be able to hold all the conquered nations in perpetual subjection. And I doubt if the Germans of future generations will entertain unadulterated pride in the deeds for which Hitlerism will be deemed responsible. They will honour Herr Hitler as genius, as a brave man, a matchless organizer and much more. But I should hope that the Germans of the future will have learnt the art of discrimination even about their heroes. Anyway I think it will be allowed that all the blood that has been spilled by Hitler has added not a millionth part of an inch to the world’s moral stature.

    • Harijan (22 June 1940), after Nazi victories resulting in the occupation of France.
  • The ideally non-violent state will be an ordered anarchy. That State is the best governed which is governed the least.
    • From Discussion with BG Kher and others, August 15, 1940. Gandhi’s Wisdom Box (1942), edited by Dewan Ram Parkash, p. 67 also in Collected works of Mahatma Gandhi Vol. 79 (PDF), p. 122

A non-violent soldier of freedom will covet nothing for himself, he fights only for the freedom of his country.

  • Ours is not a drive for power, but purely a non-violent fight for India’s independence. In a violent struggle, a successful general has been often known to effect a military coup and to set up a dictatorship. But under the Congress scheme of things, essentially non-violent as it is, there can be no room for dictatorship. A non-violent soldier of freedom will covet nothing for himself, he fights only for the freedom of his country.
  • I read Carlyle’s French Resolution while I was in prison, and Pandit Jawaharlal has told me something about the Russian revolution. But it is my conviction that inasmuch as these struggles were fought with the weapon of violence they failed to realize the democratic ideal. In the democracy which I have envisaged, a democracy established by non-violence, there will be equal freedom for all. Everybody will be his own master. It is to join a struggle for such democracy that I invite you today. Once you realize this you will forget the differences between the Hindus and Muslims, and think of yourselves as Indians only, engaged in the common struggle for independence.
  • We cannot evoke the true spirit of sacrifice and velour, so long as we are not free. I know the British Government will not be able to withhold freedom from us, when we have made enough self-sacrifice. We must, therefore, purge ourselves of hatred.
    • The Quit India speech made on August 8, 1942 in Bombay, on the eve of the Quit India movement.
  • Religions are different roads converging to the same point. What does it matter that we take different road, so long as we reach the same goal. Wherein is the cause for quarreling?
    • Speaking of the conflict between Muslims and Hindus, in Hind Swaraj, Or Indian Home Rule (1946), p. 36
  • If you want to give a message again to the West, it must be a message of ‘Love’, it must be a message of ‘Truth’. There must be a conquest — [audience claps] — please, please, please. That will interfere with my speech, and that will interfere with your understanding also. I want to capture your hearts and don’t want to receive your claps. Let your hearts clap in unison with what I’m saying, and I think, I shall have finished my work. Therefore, I want you to go away with the thought that Asia has to conquer the West. Then, the question that a friend asked yesterday, “Did I believe in one world?” Of course, I believe in one world. And how can I possibly do otherwise, when I become an inheritor of the message of love that these great un-conquerable teachers left for us? You can redeliver that message now, in this age of democracy, in the age of awakening of the poorest of the poor, you can redeliver this message with the greatest emphasis.
    • Speech in New Delhi to the Inter-Asian Relations Conference (2 April 1947) – Parts of this speech became used in an Telecom Italia advertisement (Video at YouTube – B&W, English text version, better sound)
  • Had we adopted non-violence as the weapon of the strong, because we realised that it was more effective than any other weapon, in fact the mightiest force in the world, we would have made use of its full potency and not have discarded it as soon as the fight against the British was over or we were in a position to wield conventional weapons. But as I have already said, we adopted it out of our helplessness. If we had the atom bomb, we would have used it against the British.
    • Speech (16 June 1947) as the official date for Indian independence approached (15 August 1947) , as quoted in Mahatma Gandhi : The Last Phase (1958) by Pyarelal Nayyar, p. 326. The last sentence of this statement has sometimes been quoted as if it affirmed extreme hostility to the British, rather than meaning an affirmation of the strength of non-violence and ultimate weakness of those who needlessly resort to violence.
  • Truth never damages a cause that is just.
    • Non-Violence in Peace and War (1948); also in Gandhi on Non-violence : Selected Texts from Mohandas K. Gandhi’s Non-Violence in Peace and War (1965) edited by Thomas Merton Google Books link ISBN 0811200973
  • In the dictionary of Satyagraha, there is no enemy.
    • Non-Violence in Peace and War (1948); also in Gandhi on Non-violence : Selected Texts from Mohandas K. Gandhi’s Non-Violence in Peace and War (1965) edited by Thomas Merton
  • It is better to be violent, if there is violence in our hearts, than to put on the cloak of non-violence to cover impotence. Violence is any day preferable to impotence. There is hope for a violent man to become non-violent. There is no such hope for the impotent.
    • Non-Violence in Peace and War (1948); also in Gandhi on Non-violence : Selected Texts from Mohandas K. Gandhi’s Non-Violence in Peace and War (1965) edited by Thomas Merton
  • Hitler killed five million Jews. It is the greatest crime of our time. But the Jews should have offered themselves to the butcher’s knife. They should have thrown themselves into the sea from cliffs. As it is, they succumbed anyway in their millions.
    • The Life of Mahatma Gandhi (1950) by Louis Fischer. The quote is in the context of Gandhi’s argument to his biographer that collective suicide would have been a heroic response that would have “aroused the world and the people of Germany to Hitler’s violence”.
  • Truth alone will endure, all the rest will be swept away before the tide of time. I must continue to bear testimony to truth even if I am forsaken by all. Mine may today be a voice in the wilderness, but it will be heard when all other voices are silenced, if it is the voice of Truth.
    • Basic Education (1951) p. 89
  • You must not lose faith in humanity. Humanity is an ocean; if a few drops of the ocean are dirty, the ocean does not become dirty.
    • Gandhi : His Life and Message for the World (1954), by Louis Fischer, p.177
  • An unjust law is itself a species of violence. Arrest for its breach is more so. Now the law of nonviolence says that violence should be resisted not by counter-violence but by nonviolence. This I do by breaking the law and by peacefully submitting to arrest and imprisonment.
    • Non-Violence in Peace & War (1962) Vol. 2, edited by Mahadev Haribhai Desai, p. 144
  • My life is my message.
    • Response to a journalist’s question about what his message to the world was. Mahatma : Life of Gandhi 1869-1948 (1968) Reel 13
  • Poverty is the worst kind of violence.
    • As quoted in A Just Peace through Transformation : Cultural, Economic, and Political Foundations for Change (1988) by the International Peace Association
  • We need to be the change we wish to see in the world.
    • As quoted in “Arun Gandhi Shares the Mahatma’s Message” by Michel W. Potts, in India – West [San Leandro, California] Vol. XXVII, No. 13 (1 February 2002) p. A34; Arun Gandhi indirectly quoting his grandfather. See also. “Be the change you wish to see: An interview with Arun Gandhi” by Carmella B’Hahn, Reclaiming Children and Youth [Bloomington] Vol.10, No. 1 (Spring 2001) p. 6. No evidence he ever said this see: Morton, Brian (August 29, 2011). Falser Words Were Never Spoken. NY Times..
  • You assist an unjust administration most effectively by obeying its orders and decrees. An evil administration never deserves such allegiance. Allegiance to it means partaking of the evil.
    A good person will resist an evil system with his whole soul. Disobedience of the laws of an evil state is therefore a duty.

    • Non-Violent Resistance – Often misquoted as “You assist an evil system most effectively by obeying its orders and decrees. An evil system never deserves such allegiance.”
  • All humanity is one undivided and indivisible family, and each one of us is responsible for the misdeeds of all the others. I cannot detach myself from the wickedest soul.
  • Remember that there is always a limit to self-indulgence but none to self-restraint, and let us daily progress in that direction.
    • Article in Young India (2 February 1928, Volume 10, Page 35)

Mohandas Gandhi Quotes

Action

A man is but the product of his thoughts what he thinks, he becomes. – Mahatma Gandhi

Action expresses priorities. – Mahatma Gandhi

Action is no less necessary than thought to the instinctive tendencies of the human frame. – Mahatma Gandhi

Always aim at complete harmony of thought and word and deed. Always aim at purifying your thoughts and everything will be well. – Mahatma Gandhi

An ounce of practice is worth more than tons of preaching. – Mahatma Gandhi

Glory lies in the attempt to reach one’s goal and not in reaching it. – Mahatma Gandhi

Satisfaction lies in the effort, not in the attainment, full effort is full victory. – Mahatma Gandhi

The difference between what we do and what we are capable of doing would suffice to solve most of the world’s problem. – Mahatma Gandhi

The moment there is suspicion about a person’s motives, everything he does becomes tainted. – Mahatma Gandhi

To give pleasure to a single heart by a single act is better than a thousand heads bowing in prayer. – Mahatma Gandhi

Unwearied ceaseless effort is the price that must be paid for turning faith into a rich infallible experience. – Mahatma Gandhi

Anger

Anger and intolerance are the enemies of correct understanding. – Mahatma Gandhi

Anger is the enemy of non-violence and pride is a monster that swallows it up. – Mahatma Gandhi

Man should forget his anger before he lies down to sleep. – Mahatma Gandhi

Compassion, Love, and Heart

A coward is incapable of exhibiting love; it is the prerogative of the brave. – Mahatma Gandhi

Culture of the mind must be subservient to the heart. – Mahatma Gandhi

In prayer it is better to have a heart without words than words without a heart. – Mahatma Gandhi

Justice that love gives is a surrender, justice that law gives is a punishment. – Mahatma Gandhi

Power is of two kinds. One is obtained by the fear of punishment and the other by acts of love. Power based on love is a thousand times more effective and permanent then the one derived from fear of punishment. – Mahatma Gandhi

The weak can never forgive. Forgiveness is the attribute of the strong. – Mahatma Gandhi

There is a sufficiency in the world for man’s need but not for man’s greed. – Mahatma Gandhi

We may have our private opinions but why should they be a bar to the meeting of hearts? – Mahatma Gandhi

Where there is love there is life.

Conviction and Will

A ‘No’ uttered from the deepest conviction is better than a ‘Yes’ merely uttered to please, or worse, to avoid trouble. – Mahatma Gandhi

Everyone who wills can hear the inner voice. It is within everyone. – Mahatma Gandhi

First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win. – Mahatma Gandhi

I am prepared to die, but there is no cause for which I am prepared to kill. – Mahatma Gandhi

It is any day better to stand erect with a broken and bandaged head then to crawl on one’s belly, in order to be able to save one’s head. – Mahatma Gandhi

Nearly everything you do is of no importance, but it is important that you do it. – Mahatma Gandhi

Strength does not come from physical capacity. It comes from an indomitable will. – Mahatma Gandhi

The human voice can never reach the distance that is covered by the still small voice of conscience. – Mahatma Gandhi

The only tyrant I accept in this world is the still voice within. – Mahatma Gandhi

To believe in something, and not to live it, is dishonest. – Mahatma Gandhi

Flaws, Faults, and Errors

An error does not become truth by reason of multiplied propagation, nor does truth become error because nobody sees it. – Mahatma Gandhi

Confession of errors is like a broom which sweeps away the dirt and leaves the surface brighter and clearer. I feel stronger for confession. – Mahatma Gandhi

I claim to be a simple individual liable to err like any other fellow mortal. I own, however, that I have humility enough to confess my errors and to retrace my steps. – Mahatma Gandhi

I look only to the good qualities of men. Not being faultless myself, I won’t presume to probe into the faults of others. – Mahatma Gandhi

Mohandas Gandhi Quotes4

Mohandas Gandhi Quotes

Fear

Fear has its use but cowardice has none. – Mahatma Gandhi

Fear of death makes us devoid both of valour and religion. For want of valour is want of religious faith. – Mahatma Gandhi

Freedom

Freedom is never dear at any price. It is the breath of life. What would a man not pay for living? – Mahatma Gandhi

Freedom is not worth having if it does not connote freedom to err. – Mahatma Gandhi

You can chain me, you can torture me, you can even destroy this body, but you will never imprison my mind. – Mahatma Gandhi

Humanity and Goodness

There is no principle worth the name if it is not wholly good. – Mahatma Gandhi

To deprive a man of his natural liberty and to deny to him the ordinary amenities of life is worse then starving the body; it is starvation of the soul, the dweller in the body. – Mahatma Gandhi

We win justice quickest by rendering justice to the other party. – Mahatma Gandhi

You must not lose faith in humanity. Humanity is an ocean; if a few drops of the ocean are dirty, the ocean does not become dirty. – Mahatma Gandhi

Living

Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do are in harmony. – Mahatma Gandhi

I do not want to foresee the future. I am concerned with taking care of the present. God has given me no control over the moment following. – Mahatma Gandhi

If I had no sense of humor, I would long ago have committed suicide. – Mahatma Gandhi

It is health that is real wealth and not pieces of gold and silver. – Mahatma Gandhi

Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever. – Mahatma Gandhi

Man falls from the pursuit of the ideal of plan living and high thinking the moment he wants to multiply his daily wants. Man’s happiness really lies in contentment. – Mahatma Gandhi

Nearly everything you do is of no importance, but it is important that you do it. – Mahatma Gandhi

Providence has its appointed hour for everything. We cannot command results, we can only strive. – Mahatma Gandhi

Purity of personal life is the one indispensable condition for building up a sound education. – Mahatma Gandhi

Rights that do not flow from duty well performed are not worth having. – Mahatma Gandhi

The main purpose of life is to live rightly, think rightly, act rightly. The soul must languish when we give all our thought to the body. – Mahatma Gandhi

Those who know how to think need no teachers. – Mahatma Gandhi

We do not need to proselytize either by our speech or by our writing. We can only do so really with our lives. Let our lives be open books for all to study. – Mahatma Gandhi

Mohandas Gandhi Quotes3

Mohandas Gandhi Quotes

Peace, Gentleness, and Non-Violence

An eye for an eye only ends up making the whole world blind. – Mahatma Gandhi

Each one has to find his peace from within. And peace to be real must be unaffected by outside circumstances. – Mahatma Gandhi

Gentleness, self-sacrifice and generosity are the exclusive possession of no one race or religion. – Mahatma Gandhi

It is better to be violent, if there is violence in our hearts, than to put on the cloak of nonviolence to cover impotence. – Mahatma Gandhi

Non-violence and truth are inseparable and presuppose one another. – Mahatma Gandhi

Non-violence is not a garment to be put on and off at will. Its seat is in the heart, and it must be an inseparable part of our being. – Mahatma Gandhi

Non-violence is the first article of my faith. It is also the last article of my creed. – Mahatma Gandhi

Non-violence is the greatest force at the disposal of mankind. It is mightier than the mightiest weapon of destruction devised by the ingenuity of man. – Mahatma Gandhi

Non-violence requires a double faith, faith in God and also faith in man. – Mahatma Gandhi

Non-violence, which is the quality of the heart, cannot come by an appeal to the brain. – Mahatma Gandhi

Peace is its own reward. – Mahatma Gandhi

We may never be strong enough to be entirely nonviolent in thought, word and deed. But we must keep nonviolence as our goal and make strong progress towards it. – Mahatma Gandhi

Religion and Faith

All the religions of the world, while they may differ in other respects, unitedly proclaim that nothing lives in this world but Truth. – Mahatma Gandhi

Each one prays to God according to his own light. – Mahatma Gandhi

Every formula of every religion has in this age of reason, to submit to the acid test of reason and universal assent. – Mahatma Gandhi

Faith is not something to grasp, it is a state to grow into. – Mahatma Gandhi

Faith… must be enforced by reason… when faith becomes blind it dies. – Mahatma Gandhi

I believe in the fundamental truth of all great religions of the world. – Mahatma Gandhi

I reject any religious doctrine that does not appeal to reason and is in conflict with morality. – Mahatma Gandhi

In prayer it is better to have a heart without words than words without a heart. – Mahatma Gandhi

It is easy enough to be friendly to one’s friends. But to befriend the one who regards himself as your enemy is the quintessence of true religion. The other is mere business. – Mahatma Gandhi

One’s own religion is after all a matter between oneself and one’s Maker and no one else’s. – Mahatma Gandhi

Spiritual relationship is far more precious than physical. Physical relationship divorced from spiritual is body without soul. – Mahatma Gandhi

The essence of all religions is one. Only their approaches are different. – Mahatma Gandhi

Mohandas Gandhi Quotes1

Mohandas Gandhi Quotes

Service

Man becomes great exactly in the degree in which he works for the welfare of his fellow-men. – Mahatma Gandhi

Service which is rendered without joy helps neither the servant nor the served. But all other pleasures and possessions pale into nothingness before service which is rendered in a spirit of joy. – Mahatma Gandhi

That service is the noblest which is rendered for its own sake. – Mahatma Gandhi

The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others. – Mahatma Gandhi

Truth

Even if you are a minority of one, the truth is the truth. – Mahatma Gandhi

I have nothing new to teach the world. Truth and Non-violence are as old as the hills. All I have done is to try experiments in both on as vast a scale as I could. – Mahatma Gandhi

In matters of conscience, the law of the majority has no place. – Mahatma Gandhi

The pursuit of truth does not permit violence on one’s opponent. – Mahatma Gandhi

Truth is by nature self-evident. As soon as you remove the cobwebs of ignorance that surround it, it shines clear. – Mahatma Gandhi

Truth never damages a cause that is just. – Mahatma Gandhi

What is true of the individual will be tomorrow true of the whole nation if individuals will but refuse to lose heart and hope. – Mahatma Gandhi


Mohandas Gandhi Quotes

Mahatma Karamchand Gandhi

Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi (2 October 1869 – 30 January 1948), commonly known as Mahatma Gandhi ( महात्मा mahātmā — “Great Soul”), in India as Bapu (બાપુ bāpu—”Father”) and Jathi Pitha (father of the nation), was an advocate and pioneer of nonviolent social protest and direct action in the form he called Satyagraha. He led the struggle for India’s independence from British colonial rule.

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