Friday, March 25, 2011

The Followers of Gandhi and Jesus

Geoffrey Ward begins his review of a new book on Gandhi, Mahatma Gandhi and His Struggle With India By Joseph Lelyveld, with this telling observation:

Some years ago, the British writer Patrick French visited the Sabarmati ashram on the outskirts of Ahmedabad in the Indian state of Gujarat, the site from which Mahatma Gandhi led his salt march to the sea in 1930. French was so appalled by the noisome state of the latrines that he asked the ashram secretary whose job it was to clean them.

A sweeper woman stopped by for an hour a day, the functionary explained, but afterward things inevitably became filthy again.

But wasn’t it a central tenet of the Mahatma’s teachings that his followers clean up after themselves?

“We all clean the toilets together, on Gandhiji’s birthday,” the secretary answered, “as a symbol to show that we understand his message.”

Reminds me a lot of the followers of Jesus.

1 comment:

Turnip Ghost said...

Gandhi was strange.
And this is another example of someone we're all supposed to love and admire being just as screwed up as anyone else.
Hero worship is pathetic.