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Opinion Women suffer from Gandhi's legacy

Discussion in 'Breaking News' started by spnadmin, Jan 29, 2010.

  1. spnadmin

    spnadmin United States
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    Women suffer from Gandhi's legacy

    Mohandas Gandhi held India back when it came to women's rights – and his own behaviour around them could be bizarre


    Mohandas Gandhi, whose death anniversary falls on Saturday, was an amazing human being. He led his country to freedom and helped destroy the British Empire. Little wonder India worshipped him, and still worships him, as the Mahatma – "Great Soul". In the west he is viewed as a near-perfect combination of compassion, bravery and wisdom.


    But Gandhi was also a puritan and a misogynist who helped ensure that India remains one of the most sexually repressed nations on earth – and, by and large, a dreadful place to be born female. George Orwell, in his 1949 essay Reflections on Gandhi, said that "saints should always be judged guilty until they are proved innocent". If only.


    Gandhi despised his own sexual desires, and despised sex in any context except for procreation. He preached that the failure to control carnal urges led to complaints including constipation. He believed that sex was bad for the health of an individual, and that sexual freedom would lead Indians to failure as a people. He sought to consign his nation to what Martin Luther called "the hell of celibacy". He took his own celibacy vow unilaterally, without consulting his wife.


    Both Gandhi and his hagiographers claimed he viewed women as equal to men, pointing to his inclusion of women in India's independence struggle. He celebrated non-violent protest as a "feminine" principle, neutralising the masculine brutality of British rule. But his sexual hang-ups caused him to carry monstrously sexist views. His view of the female body was warped. As accounted by Rita Banerji, in her book Sex and Power, "he believed menstruation was a manifestation of the distortion of a woman's soul by her sexuality".


    During Gandhi's time as a dissident in South Africa, he discovered a male youth had been harassing two of his female followers. Gandhi responded by personally cutting the girls' hair off, to ensure the "sinner's eye" was "sterilised". Gandhi boasted of the incident in his writings, pushing the message to all Indians that women should carry responsibility for sexual attacks upon them. Such a legacy still lingers. In the summer of 2009, colleges in north India reacted to a spate of sexual harassment cases by banning women from wearing jeans, as western-style dress was too "provocative" for the males on campus.


    Gandhi believed Indian women who were raped lost their value as human beings. He argued that fathers could be justified in killing daughters who had been sexually assaulted for the sake of family and community honour. He moderated his views towards the end of his life. But the damage was done, and the legacy lingers in every present-day Indian press report of a rape victim who commits suicide out of "shame". Gandhi also waged a war against contraceptives, labelling Indian women who used them as *****s.


    Like all men who wage a doomed war with their own sexual desires, Gandhi's behaviour around females would eventually become very, very odd. He took to sleeping with naked young women, including his own great-niece, in order to "test" his commitment to celibacy. The habit caused shock and outrage among his supporters. God knows how his wife felt.


    Gandhi cemented, for another generation, the attitude that women were simply creatures that could bring either pride or shame to the men who owned them. Again, the legacy lingers. India today, according to the World Economic Forum, finds itself towards the very bottom of the gender equality index. Indian social campaigners battle heroically against such patriarchy. They battle dowry deaths. They battle the honour killings of teenage lovers. They battle Aids. They battle female foeticide and the abandonment of new-born girls.


    In the words of the Indian writer Khushwant Singh, "nine-tenths of the violence and unhappiness in this country derives from sexual repression". Gandhi isn't singularly to blame for India's deeply problematic attitudes to sex and female sexuality. But he fought, and succeeded, to ensure the country would never experience sexual freedom while his legend persevered. Gandhi's genius was to realise the great power of non-violent political revolution. But the violence of his thoughts towards women has contributed to countless honour killings and immeasurable suffering.
    Remember, there's no such thing as a saint.


    This article forwarded by forum mentor Mai Harinder Kaur ji.
     

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  3. roab1

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    This was deleted from 'politically correct' and 'otherwise un-reliable' wiki. But this gem was well referenced. Here you go.....

    Towards the end of his life, it became public knowledge that Gandhi had been sharing his bed for a number of years with young women.[37][38] He explained that he did this for bodily warmth at night and termed his actions as "nature cure". Later in his life he started experimenting with brahmacharya in order to test his self control. His letter to Birla in April, 1945 referring to "women or girls who have been naked with me' indicates that several women were part of his experiments.[39] Sex became the most talked about subject matter by Gandhi after ahimsa (non-violence) and increasingly so in his later years. He devoted five full editorials in Harijan discussing the practice of brahmacharya.[40]
    As part of these experiments, he initially slept with his women associates in the same room but at a distance. Afterwards he started to lie in the same bed with his women disciples and later took to sleeping naked alongside them .[39] According to Gandhi active-celibacy meant perfect self control in the presence of opposite sex. Gandhi conducted his experiments with a number of women such as Abha, the sixteen year old wife of his grand-nephew Kanu Gandhi. Gandhi acknowledged "that this experiment is very dangerous indeed" , but thought "that it was capable of yielding great results" .[41] His nineteen year old grand-niece, Manu Gandhi, too was part of his experiments. Gandhi had earlier written to her father, Jaisukhlal Gandhi, that Manu had started to share his bed so that he may "correct her sleeping posture".[41] In Gandhi's view experiment of sleeping naked with Manu in Noakhali would help him in contemplating upon Hindu-Muslim unity in India before partition and ease communal tensions. Gandhi saw himself as a mother to these women and would refer to Abha and Manu as "my walking sticks" .
    Gandhi called Sarladevi, a married woman with children and a devout follower, his "spiritual wife" . He later said that he had come close to having sexual relations with her.[42] He had told a correspondent in March, 1945 that "sleeping together came with my taking up of bramhacharya or even before that" ; he said he had experimented with his wife "but that was not enough" .[41] Gandhi felt satisfied with his experiments and wrote to Manu that "I have successfully practiced the eleven vows taken by me. This is the culmination of my striving for last thirty six years. In this yajna I got a glimpse of the ideal truth and purity for which I have been striving" .
    Gandhi had to take criticism for his experiments by many of his followers and opponents. His stenographer, R. P. Parasuram, resigned when he saw Gandhi sleeping naked with Manu.[43] Gandhi insisted that he never felt aroused while he slept beside her, or with Sushila or Abha. "I am sorry" Gandhi said to Parasuram, "you are at liberty to leave me today." Nirmal Kumar Bose, another close associate of Gandhi, parted company with him in April, 1947 post Gandhi's tour of Noakhali, where some sort of altercation had taken place between Gandhi and Sushila Nayar in his bedroom at midnight that caused Gandhi to slap his forehead. Bose had stated that the nature of his experiments in bramhacharya still remained unknown and unstated.[43][44]
    N. K. Bose, who stayed close to Gandhi during his Noakhali tour, testified that "there was no immorality on part of Gandhi. Moreover Gandhi tried to conquer the feeling of sex by consciously endeavouring to convert himself into a mother of those who were under his case, whether men or women" . Dattatreya Balkrishna Kalelkar, a revolutionary turned disciple of Gandhi, used to say that Gandhi's "relationships with women were, from beginning to end, as pure as mother's milk" .[45]


    37 ^ Birkett, Dea; Susanne Hoeber Rudolph, Lloyd I Rudolph. Gandhi: The Traditional Roots of Charisma. Orient Longman, 56. ISBN 0002160056.
    38 ^ Caplan, Pat; Patricia Caplan (1987). The Cultural construction of sexuality. Routledge, 278. ISBN 0415040132.
    39 ^ a b Parekh, Bhikhu C. (1999). Colonialism, Tradition and Reform: An Analysis of Gandhi's Political Discourse. Sage, 210. ISBN 0761993835.
    40 ^ Kumar, Girja (1997). The Book on Trial: Fundamentalism and Censorship in India. Har-anand Publications, 98. ISBN 8124105251.
    41 ^ a b c Tidrick, Kathryn (2007). Gandhi: A Political and Spiritual Life. I.B.Tauris, 302–304. ISBN 1845111664.
    42 ^ Tidrick, Kathryn (2007). Gandhi: A Political and Spiritual Life. I.B.Tauris, 160. ISBN 1845111664.
    43 ^ a b Wolpert, Stanley (2001). Gandhi's Passion: The Life and Legacy of Mahatma Gandhi. Oxford University Press, 226–227. ISBN 019515634X.
    44 ^ Kumar, Girja (1997). The Book on Trial: Fundamentalism and Censorship in India. Har-Anand Publishers, 73-107. ISBN 8124105251.
    45 ^ Ghose, Sankar (1991). Mahatma Gandhi. Allied Publishers, 356. ISBN 8170232058. Gandhi student2 (talk) 15:00, 17 August 2009 (UTC)
     
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  4. Mai Harinder Kaur

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    I was just this afternoon asked by an Afghani Muslim why Sikhs dislike this fellow so much. I talked about "Bleeding Punjab" and all that. I should have mentioned the "Mahatma's" sexual perversions. Did he give no thought to the violence he was doing to the young women's psyches?

    As my late best friend Lilly, a Jain, would say, Ahimsa involves a lot more than not engaging in physical violence.
     
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  5. Mai Harinder Kaur

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    I wish he would have tried to cut my hair. He'd have learned that it isn't wise to annoy a Sikh. :chainsaw:

    (Of course, he was dead before I was born and yes, I'm a very naughty girl, I know. :knit:)
     
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  6. roab1

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    Actually mai ji Gandhi did indulge in physical violence. As a young man he once beat his wife in south africa and threw her out of his house (its in his autobiography). She spent the entire night crying alone outside the gate. She might have been eaten by wild animals as his ashram must have been in wilderness. He took to non-violence because he knew indians wouldnt be able to fight the British with violence. I hold the view that he would not have adopted the same course if was the head of a powerful armed force. His failure as a leader reflects from the fact that the country whose father he is follows none of his philosophy he preached. Whether he himself followed it out of compulsion is matter that needs research.
     
  7. Mai Harinder Kaur

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    I think the beating incident was before he began to espouse "non-violence." That doesn't excuse it, of course. I've often thought that I'd like to read a novel about him told from his wife's viewpoint. An honest book. I'd write it myself but I have real work to do and don't have the time to do that much research on this phony saint-god.

    Poor deluded fool or brazen liar to say that Indian independence was won by nonviolence?!

    I better quit; I'm getting all riled up.
     
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  8. spnadmin

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    I have to find the full article on this. However a retired Sikh Army Officer now living in California wrote a book about this called "Ghandi: Behind the Mask of Divinity." And that was my first introduction to these "experiments" as well as other aspects of his moral and political identity. The article swept me away.

    Yes here it is and the review is written by Baldev Singh.

    Gandhi: Behind the Mask of Divinity
    By G. B. Singh
    Reviewed by Baldev Singh

    (Originally posted by forum member Soul_Jyot ji at http://www.sikhphilosophy.net/hinduism/14745-gandhi-behind-the-mask-of-divinity.html)


    "Truth comes out breaking the walls of a fortress" is a Punjabi saying. For the lovers of truth G. B. Singh has exploded the Gandhi myth – apostle of peace, emancipator of untouchables and liberator of India by peaceful means from the British yoke – by publishing his labor of love, Gandhi: Behind the Mask of Divinity. G. B. Singh studied Gandhi for over twenty years collecting Gandhi’s speeches, writings and other documents, which the promoters of Gandhi left out intentionally to create a twentieth century messiah by fusing Jesus Christ and Vishnu. The oppressors – the proponents of colonialism, slavery, racism and casteism - have imposed their own version of history on the victims through manipulation, deception and hypocrisy. For example there is holocaust museum in the capital of United States in the memory of six million Jews who fell victim to the atrocities of Nazis in World War II. It is commendable and such museums should be built in every capital in the world to remind people of the heinous crimes of the Nazis. But why not a museum about the genocide of native Americans or a museum about slavery in the capital of United States? It takes moral courage to look into the face of truth! In order to avoid the obligation to intervene in Rwanda, the Western powers led by President Clinton put pressure on the United Nations Security Council not to characterize the mass murder of Tootsies as genocide.

    The making of Gandhi myth stared in South Africa by white Christian clergy. Rev. Joseph J. Doke, a Baptist Minster was the first to write the biography of M. K. Gandhi. Soon many other European and American clergymen and writers rushed in to make their input. John H. Holmes, a Unitarian pastor from New York praised Gandhi in his writings and sermons with titles like: Gandhi: The Modern Christ, Mahatma Gandhi: The Greatest Man since Jesus Christ, Mahatma Ji: Reincarnation of Christ and Gandhi before Pilate. Romain Rolland, French Nobel Laureate in literature looked at Gandhi not only as a Hindu saint, but also another Christ. He wrote Gandhi’s new biography in French. The English translation of this book opens with: He is the One Luminous, Creator of All, Mahatma. Impressed with lavish propaganda about Gandhi in the West, the Hindu propaganda machine came into action and it churned out a plethora of literature to elevate Gandhi to the status of twentieth century Hindu god – "The seventh reincarnation of Vishnu, Lord Rama," proclaimed Krishnalal Shridharni. Portraits of Gandhi depicted him as Hindu avatar and Christian saint. The Indian government under Prime Minister Indra Gandhi financed one-third the cost of the production of the movie "Gandhi" for the portrayal of Gandhi as "an absolute pacifist."

    he Christian clergy had an ulterior motive in building the Gandhi myth. They thought that by elevating Gadhi to a 20th century messiah and then converting him would open the flood gate for evangelizing Hindu masses. Little did they realize that Gandhi hoodwinked them with his insincere statements about Christianity? He was a die-hard Hindu, a true believer and defender of the caste order – the essence of Hinduism?

    Gandhi apologists indulged in gross deception by claiming that Gandhi’s Satyagrah in South Africa was in the defense of the rights of native people. Nothing could be further from truth than this bald lie. How could Gandhi, a diehard supporter of the caste system think of the welfare of African blacks he regarded lower than the Untouchables of India - slightly above the animal level? His Satyagrah was for the better treatment of Indians, who, according to Gandhi were treated the same way as savage Kaffirs (native people) were. In his stay of twenty years in South Africa, he had no social contacts with the Kaffirs, as he did not see any common ground with them in the daily affairs of life. He was horrified when he was lodged with "natives" in the same jail ward. He did not like wearing the same clothes with label "N" born by the natives, nor he liked their food and sharing lavatory with them. It was the jail experience, which brought out his racism in the open. " Kaffir and Chinese prisoners are wild, murderous and given to immoral ways. Kaffirs are as a general rule uncivilized – the convicts even more so. They are troublesome, very dirty and live almost like animal."


    He proclaimed that the British Empire was for the welfare of the whole world and he accepted the superiority and predominance of white race. But he reminded the white people that upper caste Indians share with the Europeans a common heritage – the blood of the noble Aryan race. According to him it is Aryan blood, which is responsible for the advancement of human civilization. He suggested to Rev, Doke to civilize the Kaffirs by converting them to Christianity and by infusing Aryan blood into their race. He told the white colonists that the preservation of racial purity (Apartheid) was as important to the Indians as to Europeans.

    He urged the colonial authorities to raise a volunteer militia of Indians to fight for the Empire. He told the Natal authorities that it would be a "criminal folly" if they did not enlist Indians for the war. He was rebuffed with sarcastic and derogatory comments about the fighting ability of people like Gandhi. However, his persistence persuaded the authorities to form a volunteer ambulance corps of Indians under the command of Sergeant-Major Gandhi during the Boer War and Zulu Rebellion. He urged the Indian community to show their loyalty to the British Empire by raising funds for the War. He reminded them that they were in South Africa due to the courtesy of the Empire. It is not for us to judge whether the Kaffir revolt is justified or not. We are co-colonists with whites of this land whereas the black savages are as yet unfit to participate in the political affairs of the colony.

    He was a mean spirited parochial Hindu. Sergeant- Major Gandhi selected only Gujrati Hindus as his assistants, three Sergeants and one Corporal in spite of the fact the ambulance corps (20-24 men) was made up mostly of non-Gujratis with substantial number of Muslims.

    The Russian Revolution of 1914 spurted national movements against colonial rule. The British brought Gandhi back to India to sabotage Indian national movement against British rule. The congress Party dominated by Gandhi was set up under the patronage of the British authorities. The "apostle of peace" urged the Indian people to support the British by enlisting in the army during World War I. In his letter he wrote to the Viceroy in1930, he said, " One of his reason for launching the Civil Disobedient Movement is to contain the violence of revolutionaries."

    On the advice of white promoters of Gandhi, black clergy and civil rights leaders traveled to India to seek Gandhi’s advice about solving the problem of segregation and civil rights of blacks. How little did they know that Gandhi regarded the black people slightly above the animal level? Moreover, they were ignorant of the fact that caste system was originally imposed, as racial discrimination (Varna Ashrama Dharma) similar to the Apartheid system, on the black natives of India by their Caucasian conquerors. But later on due to emergence of new racial groups due to miscegenation between the two groups, Varna Ashrama Dharma evolved into caste system tied to hereditary occupations. Untouchabilty is as integral a part of Hindu faith as anti- Semitism of the Nazis. It is noteworthy that not a single black leader met Dr. B. R. Ambedkar – M. A. and Ph.D. degrees from Columbia University, M.Sc. and D.Sc. degrees from London University and Bar-at-Law from Grey’s Inn, London - who was the undisputed leader of the Untouchables at that time. Gandhi propaganda machine manipulated the visit of black leaders, as it did not want them to find truth about Gandhi’s views on the caste system. "I believe in Varnashrama (caste system) which is the law of life. The law of Varna (color and / or caste) is nothing but the law of conservation of energy. Why should my son not be scavenger if I am one? He, Shudra (lowest caste) may not be called a Brahmin (uppermost caste), though he (Shudra) may have all the qualities of a Brahmin in this birth. And it is a good thing for him (Shudra) not to arrogate a Varna (caste) to which he is not born. It is a sign of true humility."

    In 1921, Gandhi delivered violent speeches inciting racial hatred against the British. During ****** demonstrations and riots against the visit of Prince of Wales, William Francis Doherty, an American citizen working in Bombay was murdered. Gandhi personally got involved in the cover up of this gruesome murder through bribery and intimidation, as he was concerned that the details of this murder would tarnish Gandhi’s image in the West.

    It is a cruel joke and one of the biggest fabrications of the twentieth century that Gandhi won Indian freedom without spilling a drop of blood. The truth is that it was the devastating effect of World War II that forced the British government to dismantle its Colonial Empire. Moreover, it was Gandhi and his Hindu dominated Congress party that engineered the partition of the country on communal lines, as the Muslim dominant states stood in the way of high caste Hindus to set up their Ram Raj (mythical Hindu kingdom) based on caste ideology. Additionally, the Partition of India in 1947 is one of the major upheavals of the twentieth century. In the State of Punjab alone, 11-12 million people lost their homes and hearths where their ancestors had lived for centuries. May be as many as one million people perished in the communal frenzy and thousands of young women were kidnapped while Gandhi was reciting the murderous sermons from his favorite scripture – Bhagvad Gita. He kept insisting up to the last moment that the country would be partitioned only over his dead body!

    The ascetic in loincloth used to sleep in buff with naked young girls to perform experiments to test his celibacy. Dr. Sushila Nayar told Ved Mehta that she used to sleep with Gandhi as she regarded him as a Hindu god. The man, who had taken vow of poverty, demanded and got even in jail the same comforts enjoyed by British high officials in India.[

    The "apostle of peace," who counseled a Jewish delegation" to oppose the evil of Nazism by "soul force" - by committing mass suicide, was all praise for annexing Kashmir by armed aggression.

    He told his Sikh followers that rusty sword is useless in the age of Atom Bomb. The development of nuclear weapons by India - a country that ranks among the poorest in the world and is near the bottom of human development index chart of the United Nations – exposes the real face of the "absolute pacifist" and the nation that calls him "father." After all didn’t lord Krishna tell Arjana during the battle of Mahabharata "Victory is truth."

    Although, the Indian people have started peeking at the man behind the mask of divinity, there is no let up in the perpetuation of Gandhi myth in the West, especially the United States.

    ]G. B. Singh rightfully deserves the accolades for bringing out the truth about Gandhi from Gandhi’s own mouth.
     
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  9. spnadmin

    spnadmin United States
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    BTW G.B. Singh is a keshdhari retired US Army Colonel.
     
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  10. roab1

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    A case of a very well know female writer in India. (with some editing).

    2007- She was attacked by the * fundamentalists in Hyderabad, India.

    The fundamentalists issued * against her and set a price ( unlimited reward) on her head in a public meeting in Kolkata.

    She was invited by the Allahabad University as a speaker, but because she was attacked in Hyderabad, the University cancelled Taslima's lecture.

    She was forced to live under virtual house arrest in Kolkata and was constantly asked by the WB Government to leave the state.

    Violent protest was held by the * fundamentalists demanding her deportation from India.

    She was thrown out of Kolkata by West Bengal Government.

    She was sent to city of Jaipur in Rajasthan, but was not allowed to stay there. She was bundled out of Jaipur.

    She was kept in an undisclosed location in Delhi where she was forced to live under house arrest.

    2008- The Government asked Taslima to leave India. After staying for seven-and-a-half months under house arrest she was forced to leave India in March.

    Taslima applied for the renewal of her Bangladesh passport again. And again it was denied to her. She even requested Bangladesh Government to issue a ''no visa required' stamp or at least a tourist visa for Bangladesh on her European passport. But this was also not granted.

    She returned to India in August. She had to stay in Delhi and was not allowed to go to Kolkata, not even for two days to pack her bags and leave. She was forced to quit her establishment in Kolkata.

    She was given the extension of her residence permit with the condition that she must leave India within a few days after her permit was renewed. She was forced to leave India once again.

    2009 Taslima came to India in Februay before her residence permit expired. But the world's largest democracy laid down that Taslima could get an extension of her residence permit for India only if she gives an undertaking that: 1. She would leave India (and she must show her flight ticket to prove she is leaving) before 17th of February ( the day her residence permit would expire), 2. She must not go to Kolkata, 3. She must not interact with media and 4.She must not enter India before 31st May next ( since by this time the general election in India would be over). Taslima had no other alternative but to leave India silently.

    Mayor of Paris invited Taslima to stay in a artist's residence in Paris for 6 months.

    She tried to go back to Bangladesh, but failed. The government of Bangladesh continued to deny her right to return.

    She returned to India in August to find out whether she could live in Delhi, if not Kolkata. But the Government of India refused to give her permission to live anywhere in India. The Government extended her residential permit with the precondition that she must not reside in India and she would have to leave immediately after the permit was renewed. Taslima was forced to leave India again.

    Dipu Moni, the Foreign Minister of Bangladesh, has been frequently telling the media that the Bangladesh Government has no problem in allowing Taslima to enter her country. Dipu Moni said, Taslima can return to Bangladesh whenever she wants. But in reality, Taslima is not being allowed to enter her country. After Dipu Moni's public statement, Taslima applied to renew her Bangladesh passport so that she could enter Bangladesh, but the Bangladesh Government did not respond. She also tried to get a Bangladesh visa on her European passport. Even that has been denied to her.

    She is currently living in the USA.

    Official Home Page of Taslima Nasrin
     
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  11. Mai Harinder Kaur

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    Freedom of thought and expression in "the world's largest (secular) democracy."
     
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  12. Tejwant Singh

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    Simply put,Gandhi was a misogynistic bigot. There is nothing non-violent in that.
     
  13. polpol

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    Sorry to say this, but I am a Gandhian. The two articles presented here are so biased (just like the picture used to illustrate the point made), that it would be a total loss of time and energy to try to get the facts straight in detail. I will not quote but for example his wife agreed to giving up sex. And he was against child marriages which was a positive thing for women. He slept with young girls when he was old and his wife was dead long before. One of his neices (his walking sticks) was a physician, Gandhi had send her to London to study medecine, so that doesn't seem too misogynic to me. He also regreted having left his wife uneducated and prefering having sex with her instead of teaching her things. His wife had a strong personality and he admired her. He was also against the caste system, especially in regards to the Untouchables. As for racism, to this day not one African has stood up to accuse Gandhi of being a racist and many African leaders praise him. Gandhi was an inspiration for Mandella, Martin Luther King and he is an inspiration for Obama who is neither a sexist nor a racist but a progressist. Gandhi is the most insulted man in human history, he heard it all during his lifetime and though he would laugh at what is written about him in those two articles, I don't find it funny at all. This is down right mean. How can we accuse him of not being a femenist at that time. So good-bye people and thank you for making things clear for me. I would like to unsuscribe from this honorable site but I don't know how to do it, so if you could kindly ban me, I would appreciate.
     
  14. kds1980

    kds1980 India
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    Polpol ji

    Gandhi's Biggest problem was he always wanted to impose his idea on others.
    Gandhi told the people That there will be no partition and any type of partition will be on his dead body.So indirectly he assured millions of people that India will remain united.But partition did happen and Gandhi did not keep his words.The people mainly Hindu's and sikhs of pakistan that did accept his words suffered most because they trusted him.

    No doubt some of Gandhi's idea of non voilence and simple living inspired many but he had his short comings
     
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  15. Mai Harinder Kaur

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    Polpol ji,

    You may never read this, but I feel the need to write it. In this forum, each of us is an individual with individual ideas and beliefs. SPN has no official opinion about Gandhi; some of its members, including me, do not like him for various reasons. If you do, I think it makes more sense to stay and make your case than running away, but again. that is an individual decision. If you think this thread is character assassination, you are most welcome to post your views. You might even want to post an article praising him.

    Even if we cannot have a meeting of the minds on one topic, you might consider that there are many, many topics in this forum and this world. Judging on one topic is limiting. For example, I am opposed to abortion on demand and that is public knowledge. Still, I have feminists among my friends who simply accept this oddity (to them) about me, although they consider me to be, in their eyes, immorally trying to control other womens' bodies. Likewise, I am a staunch supporter of Khalistan (which, BTW, is the real root of my dislike of Gandhi), but I have very dear friends who believe I ought to be confined to a mental institution for holding such an outrageous belief. In fact, I consider one of these to be my little brother.

    Personally, I like you and wish you would remain. I think you have much to add to our discussions. If you still want the administrators to close your account, though, I am sure they will do that. I cannot speak for them, but you surely have committed nothing to make you worthy of banning.
     
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  16. spnadmin

    spnadmin United States
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    polpol ji

    I regret your decision. I too am in the camp that believes that Gandhi was a message more than anything else and that policy makers worldwide helped promote what he "appeared to be" and not what he actually was. Part of that message was independence for India. He more than anyone else established a model for civil disobedience that has been copied many times for decades and that has served the downtrodden well. But in the minds of somehe was no a champion of women, and his record in word and deed on the caste system leaves much to be desired. As people have become more aware of that darker side of his message they have felt the need to talk about it.

    We are free to debate our points of view here. As Mai ji says that is what SPN encourages. You may want to reconsider and I hope you do.
     
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  17. polpol

    polpol
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    Is it not enough that Gandhi was shot to death, must his memory be violated too? This site does not allow personal attacks nor hate speech, these 2 articles are just that. I met G.B. Singh in another site. It would be easy for me to do the same thing with him. As a retired US Army colonel, I could show that this not so heroic man with blood stained hands is a racist and a sexist and a coward because only cowards shoot on dead bodies, real warriors don't do that, so to me he is a very bad embassador of Sikhism. Aren't we suppose to have some respect for the dead? Should I also insinuate that G.B. Singh beat his wife, or that he cheated on her and that he has several illegimate children in various countries,etc. No, I won't do that but that's just what he is doing with Gandhi. And what exactly did G.B. Singh do for India or for humanity? Why fuel hatred on such a man? Some did the same with Jesus, depicting him as a homeless drunkard that liked to hang around prostitutes.

    Gandhi did not want partition. This was his greatest sorrow. Why is he blamed for this when he had no real power. After Independance he was put aside and had no official position in the government. Later in his life he complained that everybody wanted to take a picture of him but nobody listened to what he said. Today his name is used to sell just about anything, Mont Blanc luxury pens, non-veg food and alcohol in restaurants, telecommunication (Italia Telecom), should he be blamed for that too?

    One thing for sure is that he would have been delighted to see a Sikh as prime minister of India, that's the kind of country he wanted, a model of multiculturalism and religeous tolerance. Of course he made lots of mistakes, it could not have been otherwise since he never planned for the career he had, he merely got caught up in history. It all started with a personal racist insult and he brought it on a political level and one thing led to another. But today not many people remember him and as Shakespear had Brutus say, "The evil that men do lives after them, the good is oft enterred with their bones", though "evil" would be excessive in Gandhi's case. And sex was not his second best subject, it was God and truth his only subject whether in politics or in his personal life. After all he accomplished how can we blame him for not doing more. He taught fearlessness to uneducated, half naked, half starved people who would crawl when ordered to (remeber when the British made all Hindus and muslims crawl from one end of a street to another because a British woman complained she was molested by one of "those"?). And he was not at all for the atomic bomb. About the rusted sword, he meant that the use of violence and weapons can only lead to more and more destruction. There are many things that Gandhi had in common with Sikh philosophy, fearlessness and the search for truth, for example. Although he opposed the armed warrior to the non-violent warrior as he considered himself, he placed those two types of warriors on opposite ends of the same continium and in total contrast with the coward, "the one who runs away from danger and does not know how to die".
     
    #16 polpol, Jul 28, 2010
    Last edited: Aug 31, 2010

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