The 7 Biggest Blunders Of Man, According To Gandhi
It goes without saying that Gandhi was a profound man. His love of life and people defined him as one of the most memorable people to ever walk the earth. These 7 blunders of man were published in his weekly newspaper, Young India, on October 22, 1925. Without a doubt, they’re just as relevant as they were 90 years ago…perhaps even more so.
SEE ALSO: Buddha’s 6 Rules Of Love
1. Wealth without work
Some people are born into money, or get lucky and hit the jackpot with an investment. And that’s great. There’s nothing wrong with that.
But to live with that money, and not have worked for it, can sometimes lead to an entitled mindset. This mindset separates a person from the rest of the world, and keeps them from relating to others who may have a different economic experience. They literally cannot see the world as it is…they’re trapped in a judgemental cage of their own making. That can make a person desensitized to the awful poverty and deprivation we see today, even though they could make a powerful impact with their fortune and influence.
2. Pleasure without conscience
The chief query of the immature, greedy, selfish, and sensuous has always been, “What’s in it for me? Will this please me? Will it ease me?” Lately many people seem to want these pleasures without conscience or sense of responsibility, even abandoning or utterly neglecting spouses and children in the name of doing their thing. The ultimate costs of pleasures without conscience are high as measured in terms of time and money, in terms of reputation and in terms of wounding the hearts and minds of other people who are adversely affected by those who just want to indulge and gratify themselves in the short term.
3. Knowledge without character
Ok, you’re really smart. It’s seriously impressive. But are you nice to people? Look at Steve Jobs. He had it all, and people admired him. But his personal life was fraught with difficulties, largely because of him. Whatever you say about this remarkable man, even he had regrets about his relationships, and his family and friends suffered.
4. Business without ethics
Sure, making a buck is great, but what are we leaving for the rest of the world? Business is the very foundation of an economy, and yet we’ve seen just how out of control some of them have been- especially when it comes to the environment and the banking industry. Surely if we had more ethics our society would be much better off, and wouldn’t see so many ills we do today.
5. Science without humanity
Without science, we wouldn’t have cars, planes, phones, computers, or blogs (which would be a deep personal loss to this writer, I can assure you). Basically, we would be in the stone age. But we also wouldn’t have the atom bomb, automatic weapons, and so on. Science has helped kill on a massive scale. Where’s the humanity in those weapons of mass destruction? We have to change the fundamental attitude of helping each other.
6. Religion without sacrifice
Unfortunately, most religious rituals are practiced mindlessly. True worship demands sacrifice not just in terms of the number of times a day we say our prayers but in how sincere we are in translating those prayers into lifestyles. This is perfectly illustrated in this little Gandhi story:
Once a Christian priest was sent to convert people in India. After months, he hadn’t produced a single convert. Frustrated, he went to Gandhi. “After all the oppression and discrimination that the ‘untouchables’ suffer under Hinduism, why is it they do not accept our offer of a better life under Christianity?”
He replied: “When you stop telling them how good Christianity is and start living it, you will find more converts than you can cope with. These words of wisdom apply to all religions of the world. We want to shout from rooftops the virtues of our beliefs and not translate them into our lives.”
7. Politics without principle
John Quincy Adams said: “Always vote for principle, though you may vote alone, and you may cherish the sweetest reflection that your vote is never lost.”
These days, it seems like principles are mostly lost when it comes to politics. Political power seems to be dictated by those who have put the politicians in their pocket, and we’re encouraged to follow suit with whatever political party we loosely associate with- even if we know they’re the wrong choice. You see politicians spending millions of dollars to create an image (even though it’s superficial, lacking substance) in order to get votes and an office. And when it works, it leads to a political system operating independently of the natural laws that should govern it. Principles can turn our country, and our world, in the right direction.
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