By Arun Gandhi

New Shining Perspective

Posted by on Feb 6, 2015 in By Arun Gandhi, School Visits | Comments Off on New Shining Perspective

Arun Gandhi thanks Mr. Greenleaf’s for their wonderful thank you notes following his appearance at a marvelous school in Canby, Oregon.  Here are some of the things students had to say: “Living in the light is an easy title to learn, it’s just up to you to take the first step into a new shining perspective.” “Your a person that makes people laugh and change the way they think.” “I was soo thankful that I got to hear your message about helping the poor people or others that need it…I was soo inspired by you, following in your grandpas steps and I believe wherever he is, he is proud of you.” “Poverty.  Hunger.  Neglect.  These are things not many people take time with.  They hear about it and ignore it…However there are people who only get what they’ll use and save the rest.  The people who are less fortunate in their times of need.   These people love with all they have and cherish everything everyday…” “Living your life as light would mean avoiding bad moments and also thinking about the good side of things.” “Being angry and using violence is just ruining the world.” “If we all cared for one another world hunger and homelessness wouldn’t be such a problem.” “He [Arun Gandhi] saved all 128 babies that were in the streets, that was an amazing and life changing thing to do…: “The world can be a dark place.  There is evil within our cities and government but also light…” “Poverty is a heartbreaking thing…” “It’s good to be kind in the least way you can to somebody.” “Don’t waste things…” “If only people with more money would help.  This world would be a better place.” “Don’t let your light fade, let it shine.” “…what ever you give them means alot to them even if it’s a little thing…” “This is an experience I will cherish forever…” “[Mahatma] Gandhi was able to be the light at the end of the tunnel for everybody across the world.” “It takes courage and bravery to live your life as light.” ” He [Mahatma Gandhi] was trying to banish the darkness of war.” “…got me thinking that I don’t always appreciate what I have…” “Showing random acts of kindness, with no intention of being rewarded, are the kind of people we should look up to and admire.” “[Mahatma] Gandhi was light in darkness.” “YOU INSPIRED ME! :)” “…we need to act more like [Mahatma] Gandhi who was brave, sweet, loving, and so much more!” “Blood, violence, and many disturbing things are in this world, but one thing can stop it, peace.” “Once the negativity becomes too great, the holder explodes, shattering into tiny shards and causing casualties.” “That story harmed my heart because I can’t imagine kids living in the streets with no food, money, water and shelter…I am so glad that Arun Gandhi saved these kids lives.”...

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Arun Gandhi on Learning

Posted by on Jan 24, 2015 in By Arun Gandhi, Educators & Librarians, Mahatma Gandhi | Comments Off on Arun Gandhi on Learning

In an interview with the authors of Grandfather Gandhi, Arun Gandhi talks about his greatest teachers and his grandfather’s lesson to keep your mind “like a room with many open windows.”

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Qlovi Welcomes Arun Gandhi & Bethany Hegedus

Posted by on Apr 8, 2014 in Appearances, By Arun Gandhi, By Bethany Hegedus, Outreach, School Visits | Comments Off on Qlovi Welcomes Arun Gandhi & Bethany Hegedus

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Always Endeavor

Posted by on Feb 28, 2014 in By Arun Gandhi, Gandhi Family, Mahatma Gandhi | Comments Off on Always Endeavor

By Arun Gandhi Manilal and Sushila Gandhi Not all my life lessons came directly from my Grandfather Gandhi. There were some that came through my parents, Manilal and Sushila Gandhi. Manilal was the second of grandfather’s four sons and the only one who devoted his life wholly to promoting and practicing his father’s philosophy of nonviolence in his personal and public life. “Become a Better Human Being” When I left Grandfather Gandhi in 1947 to return with my parents to South Africa, grandfather’s parting words were that I “must always endeavor to become a better human being.” My parents built on this slender advice to show me how this should be done as a daily practice. Every morning upon opening my eyes I had to thank God for another wonderful day, for a wonderful family and friends and a wonderful world. I had to seek Divine wisdom to help me become better and stronger human being and then work diligently towards achieving this goal. Imperfections It requires the humility to accept that one is an imperfect human being and instead of living with these imperfections one must make a constant effort throughout one’s life to become better by changing the imperfections, one small step at a time, to perfections. My parents dissuaded me from seeking role models in society. Each individual is different with vastly different abilities. Trying to model oneself on what someone else has achieved, even parents and grandparents, means you will be constantly trying to ape them instead of finding your own inner strength and abilities. Inter-related, Inter-connected and Inter-dependent My parents taught me to meditate every day for at least an hour to reflect on myself and discover my purpose in life. We are not individual human beings to do whatever we please. We are all inter-related, inter-connected and inter-dependent not only as humans but also with nature. The acceptance of this reality gives rise to humility and compassion in an individual along with the realization that each one of us is a small cog in the giant human machinery that will work efficiently only if all the parts play the role they are supposed to by the Law of Nature. It means we live for each other, not for our selves. The awakening of love, respect, understanding, compassion and appreciation of each other, and all of nature, will bring harmony in society and and allow us to build...

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Pursuit of Truth & Pumpkins

Posted by on Feb 21, 2014 in By Arun Gandhi, Mahatma Gandhi | Comments Off on Pursuit of Truth & Pumpkins

By Arun Gandhi Pursuit of Truth Perhaps the greatest tragedy is that most people during Grandfather Gandhi’s lifetime and after tend to follow his philosophy of nonviolence dogmatically and/or literally. To broaden people’s perspective he began to describe his philosophy as Satyagraha, or a Pursuit of Truth, instead of nonviolence. He believed life must be a constant and sincere pursuit of Truth. In simple terms, we must always strive to become better by being truthful to ourselves and the world. Two simple episodes made me aware of how much Truth meant to Grandfather. The first was when my parents, my younger sister Ela, who was five- years-old then, and I at eleven, arrived at Sevagram Ashram, Grandfather’s service village. Too Many Pumpkins Life in the ashram was very simple and so was the food. But no one expected simplicity to mean eating boiled, unseasoned (not even salt), pumpkin for lunch and dinner every day. For health and work reasons Grandfather ate his special diet in his room. No one, not even my parents, had the nerve to ask Grandfather why we had to eat such a bland diet day and night. However, Ela, my five-year-old sister, could not be contained. She walked into Grandfather’s room on the third day and said, “Grandfather, I think you should change the name of this ashram and call it Kolagram instead of Sevagram.” Grandfather looked up in surprise and asked, “Why do you say that, child?” “Ever since we arrived we have been eating nothing but Kola (pumpkin),” she explained. “Is that so?” Grandfather responded with genuine surprise. “If what you say is true then you are right, I must change the name of this place.” That evening after prayers he called the administrator of the ashram, Muna Lal, and said, “I have heard this complaint from my granddaughter. What is your explanation?” Muna Lal explained, “You said we should eat only what we grow on our farm.” “Are you saying that our farm can produce nothing but pumpkins?” Grandfather inquired. “No,” Muna Lal replied meekly, “But we planted only pumpkins and got a bumper crop.” “So, you either find a way out of this dilemma or I will have to change the name of this ashram,” Grandfather said. Eggs for Breakfast The second episode happened several months later in the city of Poona (now Pune pronounced Poonay). Grandfather and several others from the ashram were there for nature cure treatment for various ailments. I had a daily regimen because grandfather believed that time is too precious to be wasted. One day after my regimen of early morning prayers and exercises, I was resting in the garden waiting for breakfast. Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru, the first Prime Minister of India, snuck up from behind, put his arms around my shoulders and asked, “Have you had breakfast?” “No,” I said. “Would you like to join me?” he asked. “Of course,” I said enthusiastically. Who wouldn’t want to have breakfast with such a great leader? We walked into the dining room and when someone came to take our order Nehru asked me “What will you eat?” “Whatever you eat,” I said not knowing what that would be. “I don’t think you can eat what I eat,” he said. Nehru was aware, I am certain, that the Gandhi family, for several generations, were strict vegetarians and did not even eat eggs. “Why not?” I asked surprised. “If you can eat it why can’t I?” “Well, I am going to eat eggs and I don’t think your grandfather will want you to eat eggs,” he explained. “If he allows...

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Why a Children’s Book?

Posted by on Feb 18, 2014 in Book's Journey, By Arun Gandhi, Mahatma Gandhi | Comments Off on Why a Children’s Book?

By Arun Gandhi Sharing Stories I first came to the United States in 1984 and when people found out my antecedents invitations poured in to come and share whatever I could of Grandfather. My personal stories with Grandfather and my parents, who practiced his philosophy of nonviolence assiduously, became famous. People wanted to hear them over and over again, not only because the stories were interesting but more because I brought the philosophy down to the personal level and made people realize that unless we become the change we wish to see in the world nonviolence will remain an exotic philosophy. Grandfather’s India A little over a decade later I decided to take my work to a higher level. Why not take interested people on a guided tour of India to show them how people at the grassroots level were using the philosophy to make the change they wished to see in the world. Thus, the Gandhi Legacy Tour was born. Not only do I share with visitors the stories, their impact on me, the impact of Grandfather’s philosophy on India and Indians, but we go to places never visited by normal tourists. The Legacy tour is a lesson in what we can do to make the world more peaceful and harmonious so that peace can prevail. The Gandhi Legacy Tour Itinerary Overview from Tom Ross on Vimeo. Culture of Nonviolence I believe everything that Gandhi did during his life was designed to educate people so that eventually we could change the Culture of Violence that pervades the human race to a Culture of Nonviolence. As we have seen and experienced Violence tends to bring out the worst in human beings — hate, prejudice, anger, frustration, greed, selfishness — everything that is antithetical to “civilization.” On the other hand Nonviolence, as Gandhi practiced it, brings out the best in human beings — love, respect, understanding, compassion, appreciation — all the sentiments and emotions that we cherish as being the foundation of a civilized society. So, when we ask: Is Nonviolence relevant today? We are basically asking: Is civilized human behavior relevant today! God help us if the answer is in the negative. Grandfather Gandhi, The Book The struggle to civilize human societies everywhere has to be tackled at all levels and by any means possible before the cancer of violence destroys our humanity. Gandhi believed: If nonviolence is to become the wave of the future, we have to begin with educating the children. Grandfather Gandhi is a modest attempt to help children understand that they can make this world a better place for future...

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