Questioning Moral Pertinence

Gandhi, in today’s world is a name symbolic of the values we have inherited, the beliefs we blindly follow, or seem to blindly follow. Gandhi, a name, which is just a façade to the world, symbolic of the fact that even today we as Indians salute the man with such righteous views.

Has this man just been reduced to the sudden remembrance which dawns upon us Indians every second of October or every time some film maker has an epiphany and decides that a story on Gandhi is his only path to redemption from religious sacrilege. Well sadly Gandhi’s views on simplistic living and ahimsa have set standards for this nation which it has to live up to, because isn’t that what India is all about. Sacrificing our interests at the cost of others, being a true embodiment of altruism? India and Gandhi is reduced to someone the world turns to, to comforts themselves believing that even in today’s world of bloodshed, violence and ‘himsa ’there seems to be one supposed survivor. Someone who is an intricate part of India’s history, its freedom struggle but someone whose legacy is now forcibly being lived on to prove a fact to the world.

But the question is, do we require documentaries, stories and excerpts from history reiterating the fact that our history bears the name of a man with such eminence. Sadly they seem to just stir the emotions of a handful, which too return to their initial opinion that these values bear no ground in today’s world. Gandhi’s views are taken as a preamble before anyone one thinks about an Indian. They bear preconceived notions about the nation and its people who seem to trickle into their mindset and views related to this country.

The solution to this lies in the fact that we must first accept that we too are a nation which does make mistakes, some graver than the other. Living up to the India which our forefathers once envisaged is quite a daunting task. We as Indians must adapt, change and most of all change the world and the views of people who expect us to be morally stagnant. Gandhi for once never envisaged a nuclear deal, but we did. If  today we can make nuclear deals and protect our nation in wars ,quite aversive to our father’s views, but still bear the same reverence for him as we did 50 years ago, I feel we are more morally sound than any nation in this world.

Amanjit Singh Khanna