October 2nd is Mahatma Gandhi’s Birthday Anniversary…
To all my personal friends and friends of my late grandfather Mohandas ‘Mahatma’ Gandhi I send warm regards and best wishes from my home in Rochester, New York. I have been encouraged by many to continue writing an annual message on the day of Grandfather’s birthday, October 2nd (1869 – 1948). This date is now known as the United Nations International Day of Nonviolence which was designated by the U.N. to acknowledge Mohandas ‘Mahatma’ Gandhi each year.
Bapu, we still love you!
The Gandhi Birthday is Not Forgotten
Thankfully, the Gandhi birthday is not forgotten by everyone. He still lives and influences people in small towns and villages of India where common people are quietly bringing about a change that Gandhi talked about. Hardcore, Khadi-wearing “Gandhians” will not recognize these individuals as followers of Gandhi’s traditions. But Gandhi was not about wearing Khadi and dogmatically using Gandhi’s writings as the blueprint for change. Gandhi encouraged people to use their wisdom and imagination to do what is necessary to bring about a change. Gandhi wanted his writings to be burnt on his pyre because he did not wish to leave behind a dogma.
Nineteen years ago I went in search of Gandhi’s soul and I knew I would not find it in the modern westernized, materialistic cities of India so I traveled through the villages and found hundreds of interesting organizations quietly changing society one person at a time. I decided to share my findings with people who were interested in joining me on a Gandhi Legacy Tour. Over the years hundreds have come and were impressed by the amazing sacrifices that young people have made to help the poor and the destitute. Perhaps, that is as it should be because Gandhi always believed true India existed in its 600,000 villages, not in the cities! Bapu will always be there wiping the tears and tending the wounds of the forgotten humanity dismissed by urban gentry as the “dregs of society.”
Happy Gandhi Birthday, Bapu!