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The Life of Mahatma Gandhi: Who is Gandhi?

Even after a long time since his death, many still wonder who Gandhi is. Mahatma Gandhi was an activist and politician who was the leader of Satyagraha, the non-violent resistance. Gandhi was also a lawyer and was called Mahatma, meaning "Great Soul", by the Indians. Gandhi, who was welcomed by a huge crowd of followers to see him wherever he traveled, attracted intense attention and love throughout his life. His fame increased even more after he passed away and his name has become a legend.

Many still wonder who Mahatma Gandhi is. So, let's take a closer look at the life story of this special soul.

The Life of Mahatma Gandhi

Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi is the real name of Mahatma Gandhi, who had an indelible impression on humanity with his peaceful methods. His peaceful actions for humanity brought him the title Mahatma, which means "Great Soul". 

Bringing liberation to India and becoming the symbol of human rights across the world, Gandhi managed to mark the world history, whose name is still spoken with the non-violent resistance.

Mahatma Gandhi was born in India on October 2, 1869,  and encouraged to pursue law by his father from an early age. His father, who was the chief minister of a state of the country, wanted his son to be actively involved in social life, just like him. At the age of 13, his family wanted him to get married. One year later, he started to study again. He was 20 years old when he had his first child. Gandhi had 3 more children in the following years. 

Educational Background of Mahatma Gandhi 

Gandhi was an average student and started his education in Porbandar and Rajkot, India. Then he enrolled at Samaldas College. At the age of 18, he attended the University College London to study law as his father requested. During his stay in London, he received dance lessons and became interested in British culture. Keeping his promise to his mother, who was completely absorbed in religion, he was devoted to Hinduism throughout his life.

Joining the London Vegetarian Society, Gandhi carried out research on vegetarians and internalized this philosophy. In 1875, he founded the Theosophical Society to ensure that universal brotherhood becomes a well-established philosophy. Later on, Gandhi also started to read about monotheistic religions, including Christianity, Buddhism and Islam, apart from Hinduism. 

Mahatma Gandhi's Struggle for Independence

After being admitted to the bar in Wales, England, he returned to India and started his legal practice in Bombay. After the failure of his attempts, he decided to work as a high school teacher. However, he failed once again and returned to Rajkot. Starting to draft petitions, Gandi was forced to close due to a disagreement he had.  

In 1893, Gandhi accepted a job offer from a company in Natal, South Africa, started his legal practice and advocated the rights of Indian immigrant workers. In 1894, Gandhi founded the Natal Indian Congress with his Indian friends and became the Honorary Secretary of the congress. On August 22, 1894, a constitution was established. Natal Indian Congress was founded to help fight discrimination against Indians in South Africa and made efforts for the basic problems, including sanitation, cleaning, housing and education.

After returning to London in 1895, Gandhi's path crossed with Joseph Chamberlain, the radical Colonial Secretary. In 1906, Gandhi initiated the passive resistance called "Satyagraha" to advocate the rights of the Indians living in the Transvaal region of South Africa. This resistance aimed to fight discrimination and racism against Indians. During this period, Gandhi took critical actions to advocate the rights of the Indians in South Africa and lead the fight for equality. 

After returning to India in 1915, Mahatma Gandhi drew attention with his speeches at the meetings of the Indian National Congress. He became the leader of the Indian National Congress and his primary purpose was to reduce poverty. In addition to ending discrimination, he fought for the brotherhood of people from different religions, the freedom of women, and caste and inviolability. 

He made efforts for large and effective campaigns to ensure that India is in an economically good position and free from foreign domination. The famous activist led his country's justified disobedience with the 400-km "Gandhi Salt March" against the salt tax imposed by British in his country in 1930. 

Mahatma Gandhi had a special place in the world because of the revolutions he brought through a non-violent policy. These helped lay the foundation for today's boycotts, strikes and demonstrations.

Death of Mahatma Gandhi

The spiritual leader Mahatma Gandhi was killed by the assailant Nathuram Vinayak Godse on January 30, 1948. 

If you are interested in people who made their marks in history, then you can also take a look at our article “The Most Famous Travelers Who Made Mark in History”. 

 

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  • Christopher D. Gwynn
  • 28-12-2023
  • LIFESTYLE

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