I have been thinking about Gandhi’s practice and teaching of satyagraha, “a policy of passive political resistance, especially that advocated by Mahatma Gandhi against British rule in India”, and adapted by Martin Luther King during the civil right’s movement in America. I read a book about this when Nancy and I were involved in protests against waste sites being located in southwest GA, areas predominantly poor and black. Real solutions to the waste problem, the problem of equity, and many other social problems can rarely, in our time be solved with violence. Violence begets violence. A counterpoint to this is the Bhagavad-Gita, a book influential in Gandhi’s development,. It is set in the midst of battle when Arjuno in despair encounters Krishna, an embodiment of the divine spirit. The text is also an expression of this divine nature and support for those who exist in this realm in human form, met always with hard choices and trials. It is a call to action, participation in this realm and a call as in Christian doctrine to act not through the lower ego, but through the Logos, “Not I but Christ in me”. Americans should look not only to the founding fathers and the constitution but to souls like Emerson, King, and all who truly seek liberation for all of humanity and by spiritual inference, our mother the earth and its creatures, even down to it’s mineral substances, spinning as it is in the greater cosmos of form and spirit.
Happy new Year from Stephen Hawks!