Mahatma Gandhi and Truth
You have heard the name of Mahatma Gandhiji. For India he is the father of the Nation just as George Washington is the father of America. As a mark of respect for him, we call him Gandhiji. His father’s name was Karamchand Gandhi and mother’s name was Putlibai. He was born in Porbandar, in the state of Gujarat.
His mother was very religious. Gandhiji too was very religious. It once so happened that a group of people came to perform a drama in Porbandar. It was about the ancient King Harishchandra who was very truthful. Gandhiji saw how much Harishchandra had to suffer to be truthful. This had a lasting effect on Gandhiji. He decided that he would also always tell the truth. Soon truth became his way of life. He made up his mind that even if the truth led him to trouble, he would never give it up.
One day, his father gave him a book about Shravan who was extremely devoted to his parents. Gandhiji quickly finished the book. He saw a picture in which Shravan was carrying his parents on his shoulders, since both of them were blind, and wanted to go to all the holy places. Gandhiji decided that he would also take care of his parents.
When his father went to the temple, he took Gandhiji with him. When Jain monks visited their house, they discussed religious matter and Gandhiji attentively listened. Leaders of other religions also visited them and they discussed their religions. Gandhiji was influenced by different religions in his life.
Gandhiji was also vegetarian. When he decided to go to Europe to study law, his mother told him, “My son, since you are going abroad, make sure that you never drink alcohol, eat meat, or indulge in gambling.” Gandhiji gave his promise to his mother to abide by her wish and took a vow in the presence of a monk that he would never drink alcohol, eat meat, or resort to gambling.
Gandhiji used to say, “If someone is kind and generous to us, we should return that favor; but we should be kind and generous even to those who do not possess those qualities.” Mahatma Gandhi was virtuous and will always be remembered for that.
1) Who was Mahatma Gandhi?
2) What drama had a big impact on his life?
3) What did he decide after seeing the drama?
4) What types of visitors used to visit his house?
5) What promise did Gandhiji give to his mother before he went to Europe?