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Are Great Minds Born Great ?

Boyish Gandhi
Mohandas Gandhi as a young boy
Original Artist unknown. Picture digitally enhanced

While in school, the student Gandhi got into bad company and took to meat-eating, smoking and even stealing. Then his conscience deeply  troubled him and he wrote a confession to his father. In Gandhi's own words:

 I wrote it on a slip of paper and handed to him myself. In this note, not only did I confess my guilt, but I asked adequate punishment for it, and closed with a request to him not to punish himself for my offence.

I was trembling as I handed the confession to my father. He was ill with fistula and was confined to bed. I sat beside him.

He read it through, and pearl-drops trickled down his cheek, wetting the paper. For a moment he closed his eyes in thought  and then tore up the note. He had sat up to read it. He again lay down. I also cried. I could see my father's agony. I still vividly remember the entire scene today.

Those pearl-drops of love cleansed my heart, and washed my sin away. Only he who has experienced such love can know what it is. This was for me an object lesson in Ahimsa. When such Ahimsa becomes all-embracing, it transforms everything it touches. There is no limit to its power.

This sort of sublime forgiveness was not natural to my father. I had thought that he would be angry, say harsh words and strike his forehead. But he was so wonderfully peaceful, and this was due to my clean confession. A clean confession, combined with a promise never to commit the sin again, when offered before one who has the right to receive it, is the purest type of repentance. I know that my confession made my father feel absolutely safe about me, and increased his affection for me beyond measure.

Excerpted from Gandhi's autobiography.

See also: 

  • Gandhi on Ahimsa or non-violence

Mahatma Gandhi Album

Table of Contents

Biography Article
Man and Wheel _Picture_
Gandhi -Timeline
Churchill & Gandhi Article
Illustrations
Dandi March _Picture_
On Education Quote
On Jews Article
Autobiography Article
Gandhi & Women Article
Ask Gandhi  Q & A
"Leader Lead" _Picture_
Leather Puppet _Picture_
Gandhi on Gita Quote
Photo Quilt
Voice Clip Sound
Boy Gandhi _Picture_
As a Lawyer _Picture_
Day with Gandhi Slideshow
Visit to Sevashram Article
Gandhi by Laxman _Picture_
Gandhiji Quotes Quote
Radhakrishnan on Gandhi
Gandhi Cartoon _Picture_
Man & Wife  _Picture_
On Bhagat Singh Quote
ASCII Gandhi
Gandhi Rangoli _Picture_
Portrait _Picture_
Gandhi Stamps
Gandhi Painting _Picture_
Miracle Worker _Picture_
Alphabetical Index
Internet links
Satyagraha Article
Eulogy by Nehru Article
Gandhi Currency _Picture_
Hind Swaraj ArticleArticle
Citations
Gandhi Pictures _Picture_ _Picture_

 

Kamat's Potpourri Mahatma Gandhi Album

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