What is Hinduism? (By M.K. Gandhi)


“Today our eyes are dirty, thoughts dirtier and bodies dirtiest of all, because we are denying Hinduism”

These are not my words. These are the words of the famous peace leader Mahatma Gandhi.

His book “What is Hinduism?” is a collection of various articles he wrote in different newspapers about his beliefs and faiths in religion or God.

Despite having differences in basic ideology, I tried and read his second book. (The first being his autobiography- My experiments with Truth)

And this book is wonderful. Short articles like lessons make it easy to read. The level of English vocabulary is also better than a lot of Indian authors. (Maybe due to MK Gandhi’s foreign education?)

Before you go and read this, let me tell you one thing. This book is intriguing. It’s highly recommended if you want to think deeper. This is an amalgam where philosophy meets intelligence.

For those who don’t know a single thing about Hinduism, must read this. If you want to start reading about Hinduism or religion, this is the book, my friend.

Let’s see how beautifully he defines God. In his words,

I do dimly perceive that whilst everything around me is ever changing, ever dying, there is underlying all that change a living power that is changeless, that holds together, that creates, dissolves and recreates. That informing power or spirit is God.

There were innumerable instances where I disagreed with Gandhi’s point of view.
For example, consider this-

What is truth? It’s a difficult question, but I have solved it for myself by saying that it is what the voice within tells you.

He is a firm believer of truth. But his own definition of truth deceives me. This statement is highly subjective and apparently vague.

On the other hand, some statements over human minds are brilliantly delivered. For instances like this, I mentioned earlier about the philosophical brilliance of this book:

The heart accepts a conclusion for which the intellect subsequently finds the reasoning. Argument follows conviction. Man often finds reasons in support of whatever he does or wants to do.

All in all, if you want to think deeper, have a firm stand on anything in your life or want to explore Hinduism from a basic level, then, this book is for you.

P.S. If you want to read about Hinduism, you’d like Swami Vivekanand’s books too.

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