An Autobiography: The Story of My Experiments with Truth

Front Cover
"My purpose," Mahatma Gandhi writes of this book, "is to describe experiments in the science of Satyagraha, not to say how good I am." Satyagraha, Gandhi's nonviolent protest movement (satya = true, agraha = firmness), came to stand, like its creator, as a moral principle and a rallying cry; the principle was truth and the cry freedom. The life of Gandhi has given fire and fiber to freedom fighters and to the untouchables of the world: hagiographers and patriots have capitalized on Mahatma myths. Yet Gandhi writes: "Often the title [Mahatma, Great Soul] has deeply pained me. . . . But I should certainly like to narrate my experiments in the spiritual field which are known only to myself, and from which I have derived such power as I possess for working in the political field." Clearly, Gandhi never renounced the world; he was neither pacifist nor cult guru. Who was Gandhi? In the midst of resurging interest in the man who freed India, inspired the American Civil Rights Movement, and is revered, respected, and misunderstood all over the world, the time is proper to listen to Gandhi himself -- in his own words, his own "confessions," his autobiography. Gandhi made scrupulous truth-telling a religion and his Autobiography inevitably reminds one of other saints who have suffered and burned for their lapses. His simply narrated account of boyhood in Gujarat, marriage at age 13, legal studies in England, and growing desire for purity and reform has the force of a man extreme in all things. He details his gradual conversion to vegetarianism and ahimsa (non-violence) and the state of celibacy (brahmacharya, self-restraint) that became one of his more arduous spiritual trials. In the political realm he outlines the beginning of Satyagraha in South Africa and India, with accounts of the first Indian fasts and protests, his initial errors and misgivings, his jailings, and continued cordial dealings with the British overlords. Gandhi was a fascinating, complex man, a brilliant leader and guide, a seeker of truth who died for his beliefs but had no use for martyrdom or sainthood. His story, the path to his vision of Satyagraha and human dignity, is a critical work of the twentieth century, and timeless in its courage and inspiration.
 

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Autiobiography of Mahathi
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I read the book time and again and every time I could go nearer to Truth of Life. The book needs to be a part of school curriculum as a Short Stories book where every experiment with truth be made to be understood by the tiny tots so as to groom them into Real Ideal Personality.

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About the author (1993)

Mohandas K. Gandhi (1869-1948) was a lawyer and the prominent figure behind India's push for independence from British rule. He followed the philosophies of pacifism, believing in the importance of the nonviolent approach to protesting. He documented his influential life in An Autobiography: The Story of My Experiments with Truth.

Born and raised in Western India to a Hindu family, Gandhi received barrister training in London. He first experienced institutional racial discrimination in South Africa, which spurred him to his first actions in leading group-based nonviolent civil disobedience. He later returned to India and led protests against British colonialism, excessive taxation, and racial discrimination.

Known as 'the Father of the Nation," Gandhi was instrumental in the fight for religious pluralism and Indian independence. He was assassinated in 1948.

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