I was reading the autobiography of Mohan Das Karam Chand Gandhi from last 5-6 months, one chapter each day as a daily ritual. And this slow reading helped me to connect with one of the strongest men ever lived on earth who claimed that he is not perfect and consider his life as experiments for the search of truth.
I don’t think the author needs any introduction and any space is limited to talk about him. But as an author his writings comprise about 50,000 pages published in about a hundred volumes.
This book is the compilation of weely journals Navjivan published between 1925-1929. Gandhiji’s story in his book consist till 1921 and that too abruptly and he himself gave the reason for it in last chapter that after 1920s his life is more public and there are plenty of information already availble which is not worthful to write again.
The compiled work is divided in 5 parts, from his early childhood where he introduces his family, then early child marriage, law study in London, his practice and initial experiments in South Africa to initial civil movenments in India after coming back to India in 1915.
Throughout his jorney his introduces many characters who influenced his life in many ways like Mr G.K. Gokhle, Hermann Kallenbach, Suchitra Kriplani etc.
His experiments with diet(vegan), education, daily lifestyle, and even in medical treatment is woth reading as he himself confess that he was not right in many experiments but never regret to stick to his philosophies.
Some intresting facts:
- Gandhiji read John Ruskin’s book Unto This Last, which maintained that the life of manual labor was superior to all other ways of living.
- His Strick vegan diet is the result of an influential book Salt’s plea for vegetarianism.
- He was great at accountancy but not so good in economics which he himself admit in few incidents.
- He was quarantining many times during his voyages to South Africa and England.
- Once he was disguised as a police officer in South Africa to escape from an angry mob.
- His ambulance service during the war time is a firm belive in his thinking that it is wrong to take advantage of already disadvantageous country.
- For him breaking the fast was much tougher than taking it.
- The term ‘Satyagrah’ was coined by Maganlal Gandhi for which Mahatma Gandhi set a prize in his jounal Indian Opinion for a crative word that can define the struggle of nation.
Buy this book