Mahatma Gandhi Community Forum

As I mentioned briefly in the pervious Blogs, Nirbhaya is a new Social Concept used by Gandhi to solve social problem of violence. He wanted to replace the old concepts of solving social issues like Violence in the Global Society. Human being has yet to try to solve this problem of global concern.Human being has just to change the strategy. What has been the age old method? Mere physcial Force. It has brought us from age old Arrows and Bows to Atom Bombs and Chemical War, but the problem of Social Violence has ever been increasing.

It does not need any heavy material investmenrts. It only needs change of shifting of our awareness. The higher level of our conciousness. From physical to mental level.For example when Gandhi was confronted with the unjust law of the State in South Africa, while travelling in the 1st. Class rail coach. He could have easely changed from 1st. Class to 3rd Class in order to avoid confrontation. But he did not take this alternative. The other option with him was to use his phycical Force and would have confronted with the Ticket Inspector and could have finally landed in to trouble by adopting violent method. He did not take this course also. What he did was some thing else. Insted of loosing his temper, he simply shifted from physical faculty to mental faculty. The first idea that came to his mind was the unjust law of discriminating between two human being on the bases of difference of colours of the skins. Becouse Gandhi was black skined therefore he was not allowed to travell in 1st. Class coach.

When Gandhi used his mind over the problem he immideately came to the conclusion that this law could not be made by just mind. There is apparently injustice in this law and I must not accept it. He did not think illwill against the Rail Authority or the Police. Instead he kept shivering whole night and thinking as to how could this unjust law might be scraped by bringing this to the notice of Lawmakers, that is the Government of South Africa at that time. And it was the British Colonial Regime.

So, it ws not the anger or fear or timidness, it was the concept of Nirbhaya, Fearlessness, that Gandhi had invoked at that point of time when he was shivering in that cold night on the Railwaty Platform in a small Station in South Africa. It was this new conept of Social Action that made Gandhi a man of the Century. Before that he was not known to the person siting next to him in the Train from which he was thrown out being Black Indian.

Although, a century has passed to the incident that Gandhi had experienced in South Africa, we have yet to recognise this concept of Nirbhaya fully. It is high time that we realise this hard fact of life.

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Comment by Dipak Dholakia on January 28, 2010 at 19:14
Simply brilliant, Arya ji. Gandhi universalised his personal insult and saw it only as an effect of deep-seated malady that the south African government was. As you say, he combated with social action. About his message of 'Nirbhay' (fearlessness) I would like to suggest that it was his first message, Ahimsa is only an offshoot of fearlessness. Gandhi's name is associated more aptly with 'Nirbhay' than anything else.
Chris has correctly elaborated on your contention but the more glorious symbol of ;Nirbhay' was provided by Phillipinos who fell before the tanks of Markos' army fearlessly and stunned the world. this fearlessness - completely nonviolent and perfectly Gandhian - brought Markos down. Thanks again Arya ji and Chris.
Comment by Arya Bhushan Bhardwaj on January 18, 2010 at 11:52
Thankyou Chris, for your valuable comments.
Comment by Christopher Wroth on January 18, 2010 at 8:53
Thank you , Arya, for your reminder of the importance of the social concept of Nirbhaya. I note that fearlessness is a psychological concept in the beginning. When I gain the courage within myself to engage nonviolently with my "enemy", it becomes a social concept and the first step toward dialogue. Sincere dialogue aimed at establishing peace between parties can produce amazing results. Who would have thought even three years ago that Saif al Islam Gadhafi would have made peace with the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group? And who would have thought that from this reconciliation there would be a collaboration to produce the nonvioilent "Recantation" interpretation of Jihad? And all of this arose because of the Nirbhaha of Gadhaafi and Noman Benotman in establishing dialogue. Namaste. ~ Chris

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