The headline of this posting is so great that it may take all of us a long time to understand it. It was said by..Mahatma Gandhi a.k.a Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi or Bapuji.

Just reflect on this line – it is so true. If you are a vegetarian no amount of coaxing can bring water to your tongue if an array of non veg dishes are laid out in front of you! Speaking of wants Gandhiji says ” If I do not need it, I am rich, because I can live without it”. It is an amazing statement.

He was very clear that one could prioritize things in life. Learn to live with less – no driver, no car, wash your own clothes (independence from servants), clean the place you stay. So it goes a little beyond just the basics. Independence comes from being able to have all that you need – and the skill likes in keeping your needs simple.

The other very important about Gandhiji is when he says “Choosing your problem”. Read it in school, understood it after finishing CA! Amazing thought – all of us have problems, we can choose which ones to attend. Again as Chinmaya says “We fight with our mothers and wives about salt being more or less in the food, why do we not argue about being the next Prime Minister or President?”

Gandhiji would have also had his share of personal (domestic) headaches – children, children’s marriage, buying a house,…he choose to fight the Independence battle instead of the chotta, chotta problems…

Salutations Bapuji. We have let you down for sure. Hopefully our kids will perform better than us. Really hope we have brought up these kids with good value systems 🙂

Happy Birthday anyway…saw your birthday on FB that is why some of us remembered…:)

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  1. Subra,
    28-Sep-2010 was birthday of Bhagat Singh and he is at par with Mahatma Gandhi in fight for Independence.
    Though the ideology were different but the cause was same.
    I rate Bhagat Singh at the TOP. He taught us to think of country foremost than our own needs.

  2. Sachin

    please stop being driven by the media..there is no need to rank everything. Whom do you love more – your mom or your dad? Can you rank? Similarly we are here thanks to the efforts of millions of people – at least Bhagat Singh and Gandhiji are known…how can we thank all those people who got beaten by the police, families sufferred….or even the CRPF jawan of today, the underpaid, overworked Indian jawan in Ladakh,….the list is endless. Leave ranking to idiots like us in the media – we love to titilate and excite…

  3. Subra,
    As usual your responses are also apt and upto the mark.

    Want to quote another from Bapu:
    I look only to the good qualities of men. Not being faultless myself, I won’t presume to probe into the faults of others.

  4. This reminds me of Ganghiji’s talisman. It used to be on all of our NCERT school books in those days. Not sure if it’s still there…

  5. Dr Mohammed Ali Khan

    “You don’t know how much money we have to spend to keep Gandhi poor”
    Sarojini Naidu

    Let us not overestimate even the Mahatma..
    Read this article by George Orwell

    Some famous quips in this article …
    Gandhi, who after all was born in 1869, did not understand the nature of totalitarianism and saw everything in terms of his own struggle against the British government.
    The important point here is not so much that the British treated him forbearingly as that he was always able to command publicity.
    He believed in “arousing the world,” which is only possible if the world gets a chance to hear what you are doing. It is difficult to see how Gandhi’s methods could be applied in a country where opponents of the regime disappear in the middle of the night and are never heard of again…
    Is there a Gandhi in Russia at this moment?( This article was during Stalin’s time..) And if there is, what is he accomplishing? The Russian masses could only practise civil disobedience if the same idea happened to occur to all of them simultaneously, and even then, to judge by the history of the Ukraine famine, it would make no difference….

  6. Subra,
    Agreed not to rank them and let it be done by media.
    But as per my personal opinion goes I like Bhagat Singh’s ideology instead of Gandhiji’s philosophy (I may be wrong). And its nothing to do with media.

  7. Dr Mohammed Ali Khan


    Bhagat Singh’s ideology was Communism..

    Do we REALLY read Communism..?

    AS far as ideologies go, Communism has been THE most murderous ideology in human history for its body count alone…
    It is against basic human nature and has been shown to fail countless times and has caused enormous suffering wherever it has been implemented…

    Communism would have appealed to young revolutionaries like Bhagat Singh, but, if he had the chance to visit the Gulags in Siberia, if he had the chance to see the famines caused by collective farms in Ukraine,if he had the chance to witness the fear in the face of every Soviet citizen during the great terror, if he had the chance to see the killing fields in Cambodia, he too would have had doubts about this evil ideology.

    We, however have the hindsight..
    Its better for humanity to not to fall for its siren song again..

  8. @ Sachin
    @ Mohd Ali Khan

    Completely true about Communism. Stalin KILLED the most people in the World in the 20th Century. He even killed people, who killed for him (so that the news of him killing does not come out). Infact, by ranking (here it is necessary) Stalin is the #1 Killer in 20th Century. And he killed his own citizens. One of his famous quote is – “If you kill one person you become a killer, if you kill millions, it becomes a statistic”. Go read about Stalin. Chilling stuff. Since he sided with USA, UK and they defeated Hitler, the English Media has been relatively kind on him.

    Not just Stalin. Mao, Pol Pot. My Gosh. Communism gave rise to Totalitarianism and they are the leaders who killed most in recent history.

    Communism is good in THEORY only. In actual world, it does not work.

  9. Dear all friends, please read the article properly, the article is about “I am rich…by the things I can live without” said by mahatma gandhi, and not about ideology of gandhiji.
    Most of above comments including of Dr. khan have no relevance to the essence of the actual topic or the hidden message in the blog.
    “If you are a vegetarian no amount of coaxing can bring water to your tongue if an array of non veg dishes are laid out in front of you”
    vice versa is also true which goes like this:
    “If you are a pure non-vegetarian no amount of coaxing can bring water to your tongue if an array of veg dishes like paneer tikka or paneer butter masal or gobi 65 are laid out in front of you”…LOL

  10. yes Mr. Panjwani you are absolutely right. This post was about simplicity and keeping needs low, not politics at all…i hope i am not edited by Subra not wanting to post comments on other comments! It is completely ridiculous to judge Indian leaders by English Historians. The s.o.b Winston Churchill killed more people in the Bengal Famine than what they killed by bullets. Gandhiji’s simplicity (Vinoba Bhave, Rajaji, Acharya Kriplani, Morarji Desai are all stellar examples of simplicity), tremendous reading, healthy living, single minded devotion to non violence..Why ask an English dog about Gandhiji? They even re-wrote Indian history to make the Bengal famine look like an Act of God. (I like George Orwell as an author of 1984).

  11. i am not sure it is so simple as it sounds. i fail to figure out Gandhi’s importance on self reliance as if it were some magic talisman. we grew wealthier and more compassionate by the civilizing effects of division of labor.if all of us were robinson crusoes,we would be still hunter gatherers. also,his innate dislike for machinery sounds as unsound to me.he believed that using a car was like making 100 men (who manufactured it) toil for your benefit.
    for such a negative world view ,it is amazing he spoke about the dignity of labor. what kind of simplicity looks down upon the labor of the human mind?.
    not to mention his dislike for cities versus villages.there are less caste distinctions in the city(which he didnt realize) than in his utopian self reliant village.

    for all his nonviolence talk,he had no compunctions in using force to ensure prohibition etc.
    baapuji is a bundle of contradictions .but who are we to judge.i wouldnt put him on a pedestal either.

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