The Gandhi-King Community

For Global Peace with Social Justice in a Sustainable Environment

Devdas Gandhi was youngest son of Mahatma Gandhi. He was born in South Africa too. He returned India with his parents. He participated in freedom struggle with his father. Later he became a prominent editor of Hindustan Times. He wrote on current issue regularly. Mahatma Gandhi wrote a letter to Devdas Gandhi on dated 16 December 1914 that Improve your handwriting. Ba’s condition has grown very bad of late. She and I both believe that medical treatment has had altogether an adverse effect on her. She herself had asked for such treatment. After she had had two or three doses, her condition became serious. She can eat no food at present. She took a few grapes yesterday, but it seems they did not agree with her. Even if the end is death, we have made up our minds to have no fear of it. You need not worry, therefore. The body is sure to fall, and that, on the appointed day. Remedies occur to us accordingly. The atman, besides, is immortal and, though we seem to be concerned only with the body, our real concern should be for the atman. For a truth, we don’t preserve the body for any length of time after the soul has left it. So thinking, I take the necessary measures for Ba’s health and then stop worrying, and I would ask you all to do the same. Realizing, then, the fate of the body, we should cultivate goodness and disinterestedness. Goodness does not mean outward indifference to objects of desire or a wandering life, but purity of character. Disinterestedness does not mean gloominess but aversion to the pleasures of the senses and absence of interest in the things of this world. If you learn this during Ba’s illness, that will be evidence, indeed, of your true devotion to her. Mahatma Gandhi wrote a letter to Devdas Gandhi on dated 2 February 1918 that Deva, the day you are fit to take my place, no one will dare to prevent you from doing so. All that I want is that you should grow very strong. Don’t think you have no aptitude. One learns to do things as they come. Mahatma Gandhi wrote a letter to Devdas Gandhi on dated 16 February 1918 that I came here for a day, but it seems I shall have to stay for about a month. I wanted to go to Delhi today; instead, I shall have to go to Nadiad for the Kaira work. If I back out now, thousands will be put to heavy loss. People will yield and be utterly dispirited. The situation being what it is, I have stayed on for the present. I am hoping that I shall be able to get away in ten days. I keep thinking of you all the time. I know you have plenty of zeal and can interest yourself in anything. Had you been here, you would have every moment observed the supreme wonder and power of truth. This is the entire legacy I can leave for you. As I believe, it is an inexhaustible legacy. For him who knows its worth, it is priceless. Such a one would ask to have or desire no other legacy. I think you have realized its worth and will cherish it with love. I dreamt last night that you betrayed my trust in you, stole currency notes from a safe and changed them. You spent the amount on vices. I came to know about it. I took alarm; felt very miserable. Just then I awoke and saw that it was all a dream. I thanked God. This dream bespeaks my attachment to you. You of course want it. You need not fear that it will ever disappear altogether during this present life. I am making a supreme effort to bear equal love to all but, from you, I do hope for something more than from others Mahatma Gandhi wrote a letter to Devdas Gandhi on dated 12 April 1918 that I have your letter. I also wrote one to you, which you must have received. You have said nothing about your health. I am greatly pleased to learn that you have been attending on nursing the sister. We read in our holy books that pupils used to volunteer their services to their teachers. Your way of putting the thing is as natural and sweet as in those books. I do not know how to measure the height to which this service will raise you. It is quite easy to understand why I did not ask for 35 percent increase for more than one day. It was impossible for me to stretch the matter any further. The employers even now think that they agreed to give so much not because of any firmness on the workers’ part but on account of my fast. I would have been guilty of a kind of violence if I had asked for more. In accepting the minimum when I was in a position to ask for more, I showed straight forwardness, modesty and good sense. Had I not fasted, it is certain that the workers would have yielded. They kept firm because of the fast. A pledge so kept by the workers can justify only a demand placed at the lowest. We can have it respected merely in the letter. This one was so respected and, because I placed the demand at the minimum, I made up in a way, indeed in great measure, for the flaws which had tainted my fast. Esther understood the significance of the fast very clearly. She wired me a sentence from the Bible. Mahatma Gandhi wrote a letter to Devdas Gandhi on dated 23 June 1918 that I see that you have made a good beginning with the work of teaching. I sent you some instructions yesterday. Take up grammar quite early. They will find it interesting. It will also be well to teach inflections as you start. They should be compared with the Tamil forms. Let me have some idea about the age of those who join and the progress they make. Mahatma Gandhi wrote a letter to Devdas Gandhi on dated 2 July 1918 that I am very glad that you write so very regularly. I also wish to be regular, but you should not wait for my letters. There was no letter from you today. The conversation about Natesan was interesting. Do as suits you best. The work in which you are engaged at present is very important, how very important you may not perhaps realize just now. Generally, such work would be entrusted only to a very intelligent and mature person. Even if that were done, it is doubtful whether enough people will come forward to learn [Hindi] in a place like Madras. If you succeed in getting the people of the province of Madras to accept your gift of Hindi, you will have solved a difficult problem. You will then have joined Madras with other parts of India. This bridge which you have undertaken to build requires greater skill and patience than would be required in building a bridge across the Ganga. The task of making Hindi simple and interesting will exercise all your skill. To succeed in this, you will do well to read, during your leisure hours, books on Hindi, Gujarati, and English and Tamil grammars. This might reveal to you some key which will enable you to impart more knowledge with less effort. Teach a large number of derivative words [at the same time as the root word]. That will tax the memory less. I have told you to consider what arrangements can be made for the Hindi-speaking people whom we want to send there to learn Tamil. You should discuss this with Mr. Natesan, Hanumantrao and others. Revashankar Sodha and Chhotam have returned to the Ashram. I welcome this, although it adds to the responsibility. Mahatma Gandhi wrote a letter to Devdas Gandhi on dated 5 July 1918 that I feel worried. You know our rule. One must not fall sick. Self-restraint is all that is necessary to ensure that one does not. Sufficient exercise and only as much food as one need: if one keeps in mind these two things, one will never suffer in health. Mahatma Gandhi wrote a letter to Devdas Gandhi on dated 9 July 1918 that Natesan’s telegram today has relieved me of my anxiety in the absence of a letter from you. Find out the exact cause of illness and see that you do not fall ill again. What did the students of Hindi do during your illness? Did any of them continue to come to you? Were there any who continued their study? I have not had a single recruit so far, so deplorable is the plight of the country. Mahatma Gandhi wrote a letter to Devdas Gandhi on dated 24 July 1918 that This letter brings you extremely distressing news. Bhai Sorabji passed away in Johannesburg after a brief but severe illness. We have, in some measure at least, risen above the fear of death and yet a death such as this cannot but grieve. Everyone had hoped that Sorabji would act as a shield in South Africa and do great things, but this hope now lies shattered. There is gloom in South Africa, as I can gather from the telegrams received from there. God’s ways are inscrutable. Karma can never be undone. All action bears fruit, good or bad, and what we call an accident is not one in fact. It but seems so to us. Mahatma Gandhi wrote a letter to Devdas Gandhi on dated 29 July February 1918 that In the summer, living in a village appears grand indeed, but it is doubtful whether one would enjoy it in the monsoon. Personally, I think it would be very difficult for me to go to any place I like during the rainy season. My dislike of dirt is increasing, not diminishing. I feel suffocated if the lavatory is the least bit un-clean. Here, I go to an open space to answer the call of nature, carrying a hoe with me. I dig up before passing stools and, when I have finished, I leave the place after covering it with plenty of earth. I have realized that, because of our failure to observe this rule, innumerable diseases are spread, millions of flies bred. Those who are not particularly sensitive to lack of cleanliness are, I find, happy enough in a village. Mahatma Gandhi wrote a letter to Devdas Gandhi on dated 17 August 1918 that My health today is as good as it can be Still, I shall have to stay in bed. I suffered very much. It was my entire fault. It is no exaggeration to say this. The punishment has been commensurate with the fault. Please don’t worry about me at all. The nursing leaves nothing to be desired. For every service required, there are ten persons waiting to offer it and everyone showers the utmost love. This naturally puts me in mind of you. However, I have not felt your absence. Mahatma Gandhi wrote a letter to Devdas Gandhi on dated 31 August 1918 that the reason why I did not attend the Congress was that I sensed an atmosphere of extreme unreality after my talks with Mrs. Besant and Tilak Maharaj. I thought it imperative that, at a great moment like this, instead of indulging in fruitless controversies about the Scheme, we thought out ways and means of getting our demands accepted and employed them. I placed my views on the subject before them and suggested that we had two great weapons. One was that we should go all out to make sacrifices in the war and win the testimony of the Self in us as to our fitness. When the atman1 stands testimony, it gives such inner strength that nothing can withstand it. The second way was that we should make up our minds once for all about what we want and cling to it like fanatics and fight till death to get it accepted. The two leaders rejected both suggestions. I felt, therefore, that it was useless for me to attend the Congress and that, by not going, I could make my view known silently but effectively. It was with this thought that I gave up the idea of attending. Mahatma Gandhi wrote a letter to Devdas Gandhi on dated 9 September 1918 that surely you know that I am against the use of pulses by weak persons. You know my fears about oil as well. All the doctors suggested the use of mung2 and mung soup, and oil too. It is difficult, without the use of fats and what they call proteins, to rebuild a body grown weak because of the vow not to take milk. Milk protein and the fat it contains are easily absorbed in the blood stream, but not so the fat in oils. All pulses contain protein, but this protein is impossible for a weak person to digest. And yet both [pulses and oil] were consumed, as I said above. I think that was a mistake. Such mistakes are bound to occur while I am searching for a substitute for milk. It is just not possible to carry on without some oil or other. The quantity to be taken will have to be determined. In the process, mistakes are bound to occur, and there will be set-backs, too, occasionally. Mahatma Gandhi wrote a letter to Devdas Gandhi on dated 2 October 1918 that I have sent you a telegram today. It must have scared you. I want you not to be scared. I cannot expect you to have that degree of equanimity. My health, instead of improving, is steadily declining. I am not able to take any cereals. Taking only fruit cannot sustain the body and hence it must necessarily succumb. In that event, you must have forbearance and show the strength of a Kshatriya. If you keep me alive in your actions, you will be judged not as having loved the body but as having loved the soul. And then, you will have maintained a pure relationship with me. I have placed great hopes in you. Strengthen your character and follow the path of non-violence. Observe brahmacharya as far as possible. Proceed with your studies to the extent necessary and carry on my activities. Help Chi. Maganlal to the utmost. Consider Bhai Mahadev your elder. He will have much to give you. I have sent you the wire to come if you cannot hold yourself. But my advice is: stay where you are. That is the true test of your devotion. What more are you going to gain by coming here? What more service can I have from you? You are already rendering great service to me. But do as you think proper. Send copies of this letter to Manilal and Ramdas. I hope that they too will engage themselves in my work. My body has become like an old garment and that is why it is not at all difficult for me to discard it. I do not wish to acquire the burden of a new garment. But I do not think I have qualified myself to be freed of that burden. But the time is not past yet. That qualification can be acquired even in a moment. Mahatma Gandhi wrote a letter to Devdas Gandhi on dated 2 February 1919 that I expected a letter from you today, but did not get any. I have felt no little sorrow in parting from you, but I saw that your interest and your duty required that you should go. And therefore I hardened myself against the pain [of separation], born of my attachment, and urged you to leave at any cost. When your task in Madras is over, I shall satisfy your desire for studies. But believe me, the experience you have gained, very few must have. Our whole life must be, as it were, a student’s life. If you take this as the guiding principle of your life, you will never be too old for studies. Write regularly and be regular in your prayers. Mahatma Gandhi wrote a letter to Devdas Gandhi on dated 23 February 1919 that I got your letters. Give no assurance to anyone without taking thought, lest you should become guilty of breach of promise. Harilal used to write a very bad hand; he saw to it that it improved. Three of the brothers, at last, have acquired a beautiful handwriting. But your hand goes from bad to worse. It was with the utmost difficulty that Mahadev could decipher the Hindi letter you wrote on behalf of Swamiji. I could not read it at all. Bad handwriting is a serious defect. A good hand is an accomplishment. By writing a bad hand, we place a heavy burden on our friends and elders and harm our work. You know well enough that I cannot easily read a letter written in a muddled hand. I would urge you, therefore, to improve your handwriting. Mahatma Gandhi wrote a letter to Devdas Gandhi on dated 8 April 1920 that Take care of your health above everything else. Studies follow health. Development of the self comes between the two. This self, of course, will shed its light on both, health and studies. Even the preservation of our health is to this end and study too. This statement, however, may mean nothing or everything. If we do our work, looking upon everything as the means to the sole end of knowing the atman, we come to know it. We have to have faith till we do so. To put the same thing in the language of the Gita, we should go on doing our duty with no desire for the fruit. Millions of labourers work to dig a mine, in order to find one diamond. For many years they need to have faith that there is a diamond deep down. When at last they get it, it is not as if it had dropped there just then. It was always there. The same is true about the atman and knowledge of the atman. But why write all this to you? Whether or not you are aware of it, you have the vision of the atman all the time. Writing about your health and studies, I was led to all this. I placed studies below preservation of health. Should we also regard knowledge of the atman as taking second place to the body? Mahatma Gandhi wrote a letter to Devdas Gadndhi on dated 20 April 1920 that Of late not a single day has passed without my writing to you, but I have had no letter from you in reply. I have been worrying, therefore, lest my letters should have missed you. I address them myself, correctly. Mahatma Gandhi wrote a letter to Devdas Gadndhi on dated 17 May 1920 that Your letter of the 6th came as a shock to me. I am always afraid for your health. If I did not press you to come here, it was partly also because of this fear. I thought it would be better for you to live alone in some cool place. I am waiting impatiently for your next letter. I did not get the letter you wrote before the 6th; I don’t know if I shall get it. I think I shall not have to go to England. Now that the peace terms are known, all that remains is to consult among ourselves what to do next. Mahatma Gandhi wrote a letter to Devdas Gadndhi on dated 18 May 1920 that I got only today your letter of the 21th. You must have missed my letters for about a week because, thinking that you would come here, I did not write any. When I had no letter from you, I lost patience and started writing. When I did not receive any even after this, I sent a telegram and now they have started coming. You cannot praise Panditji’s kindness too much. He gets so many things done through his large-heartedness. Mahatma Gandhi wrote a letter to Devdas Gadndhi on dated 20 May 1920 that I get letters from you regularly now. Since I am going there, I hesitate to say that you may go to Almora. If you wish to, you may, though. If you feel like staying there for some time, we shall draw up a programme only after I arrive there. I have come here4 for a day in connection with the Khilafat. Mahatma Gandhi wrote a letter to Devdas Gadndhi on dated 25 May 1920 that I got one letter from you which you wrote from Calcutta. I wrote a good many to you. I wonder why you did not get any. I shall arrive there on Saturday, accompanied by Bhai Shankerlal and Jugatram6. I shall be travelling by the Jabalpur Mail. I have not looked up when it arrives there. But I have an impression that it arrives early in the morning. Mahatma Gandhi wrote a letter to Devdas Gadndhi on dated 20 November 1920 that I hope you are keeping all right. See Dhiru from time to time. If he comes over to the Ashram, by all means have him, otherwise he may go to the [National] University hostels. Revashankarbhai too, believes that it is not at all good that he should stay in the city. Shankarlal’s nephew is also going there. Keep him company and see that he does not feel ill at ease in the Ashram. Get to know Velabehn. She has made an excellent impression on me. She seems to be an upright and virtuous woman. Her children, too, seemed to be well-behaved, but you will be able to observe these things more carefully. Though I would not like to put too heavy a burden on them; I might do so without knowing it. I have made a note of the mistakes in Hindi which you have corrected, but defects disappear only if constantly corrected. When speaking, one doesn’t knowingly commit errors; actually, if errors are pointed out from time to time, one learns to avoid them. I am eager to know your programme of studies. Mahatma Gandhi wrote a letter to Devdas Gadndhi on dated 5 February 1921 that I think you had better stay on there for the present. Ba will also feel happy. You will be able to solve some of the difficulties of the Ashram. Besides, I do want that you should have some experience there and acquire proficiency in carding and spinning. Accompanying me at present are Jamnadas, the Doctor and Prabhudas. And Surendra will come and join us today. I do not understand why he has come away from Rangoon; Prabhudas, however, saw him in Patna yesterday. There are likely to be two further additions to these, Parasram and a Bengali whom the Professor wants to entrust [to me]. He believes that the man is competent enough to be useful for Young India. You would get lost in all this company and I wouldn’t know what to do. I have been thinking of reducing the number somewhat. I believe it is all to the good that things have so chanced that you have had to go there. Either you alone can fill your place, or anyone can. No person can fill another’s place and no one is indispensable. I at any rate have cultivated this attitude. It is good to cultivate the virtue of detachment. Mahatma Gandhi wrote a letter to Devdas Gadndhi on dated 18 August 1921 that I wish you to stay on there. There are a good many things you have to learn from experience there—Young India and Hindi and Gujarati Navajivan. You can do much in the Hindi section. Moreover, you will be able to give mental peace to Ba. There are carding and spinning also if you would only take interest in them. You can act as the physician and heal the wounds caused by small bickerings which may occasionally occur. I, therefore, think that you will spend at least this month there with profit. It is time now for us to cross the Brahmaputra. I shall not write further, as the post has to be got ready for dispatch before that. I had long talks with Harilal. He told me that he, too, had started wearing the khadi cap since the beginning of this month. Mahatma Gandhi wrote a letter to Devdas Gadndhi on dated 15 December 1921 that Your handwriting is as bad as the contents are beautiful. Try your best. I know that you are under pressure for time these days. Nevertheless, you have got to make the effort. Mahatma Gandhi wrote a letter to Devdas Gadndhi on dated 16 December 1921 that I got your letter. The description of the prisoners is given in beautiful language but a shabby hand, so that the latter cancels the beauty of the former. I am awaiting a wire to tell me that you have gone to jail and Mahadev has been arrested. Mahatma Gandhi wrote a letter to Devdas Gadndhi on dated 4 January 1922 that Your paper has been coming, no doubt, but there has been no letter from you. Even in the midst of all this labour, do not forget to improve your handwriting. This time, you will see in Young India a great deal [of matter] from Independent. We propose to give a digest of all the issues of your paper, so that you will easily have its weekly [edition]. You have used the phrase “mute silence”. What could this “mute silence” be? The impression of letters in your paper is not yet clear enough to be legible. I think it would be better if you discontinue typing altogether. The person who writes for you has a good hand. Your third page is not good. Too much space has been left in typing. Who will give news about the Governor of Bengal? The man who writes that Malaviyaji breaks the law must be sent to the gallows. Mahatma Gandhi wrote a letter to Devdas Gadndhi on dated 22 January 1922 that I at last got your letter today. The copy of the Independent is not clear. It should be such that there should be no difficulty in reading it. It does not matter if you can make fewer copies. Should not your articles also be clear? To bring out such a newspaper is also an art. You should find out how lithographing is done. Mahatma Gandhi wrote a letter to Devdas Gadndhi on dated 24 January 1922 that That Sherwani has been struck off the rolls is quite welcome. After all, he is not going to practice until we have the reins of Government in our own hands. I have sent a copy of your telegram to Ghose. You may see him by appointment and explain to him the whole thing. I send you a copy of the letter I have written to him. We do not want to hide any of our faults. Mahatma Gandhi wrote a letter to Devdas Gadndhi on dated 12 February 1922 that Of course, I constantly think of you, but do not find time to write to you. I got your wire; I hope you received mine sent from Bombay. I have started a fast today. It will end on Friday. Surely, I could not have done less, could I? To start civil disobedience in an atmosphere of incivility is like putting one’s hand in a snake-pit. Please do not be nervous on account of my fast. In any case do not take that as an example. It is the woman giving birth to a child who suffers the pains, others only help. I too, wish to give birth to the ideals of non-violence and truth, so that I alone need bear the pains of fasting, etc. You and others may carry out self-purification to help me in my task and go on doing your appointed tasks. You personally are of course doing this. You have no share in these sins. Mahatma Gandhi wrote a letter to Devdas Gadndhi on dated 21 September 1924 that your translation of my message is really wonderful. I could find nothing to correct. By reading “hopelessness” as “helplessness” you have, as it were, proved your title to be my heir. May God give you long life and may He advance your beautiful character and proficiency. I am quite happy. I do not yet feel the fast. Mahatma Gandhi wrote a letter to Devdas Gadndhi on dated 27 October 1924 I have your letter. I have not received Kallenbach’s cable. What you say in this letter is the same that you wrote in your previous one. I am not yet ready to send you the notes you want for Y.I. A great deal of my time is spent in the care of my body. Taking food five times means 2_ hours, sleeping 1 hour, massage 1 hour, as many as 2 hours for walking, bath _ hour. Thus seven hours of the day are spent on this routine. To this add the taboo that no work should be done at night. This convention I am breaking for the first time today. I stay in bed right up to seven in the morning. Now tell me how many hours remain for work? Remember that, after the 21 days’ fast, my condition is like that of a child. I have to let myself be brought up as a child is. However I like fasting. It would have been difficult to live without it. Mahatma Gandhi wrote a letter to Devdas Gadndhi on dated 30 October 1924 Swami was complaining that you do not take enough care of your health. I want you to take good care of your body and do your work. Do not worry in the least. Mahatma Gandhi wrote a letter to Devdas Gadndhi on dated 17 May September 1925 that I am not at all worried about you and hence do not write to you, knowing that you get all the news about me. I liked your going to Navibandar. The others also will have a change to a cool place. Millions have to bear equally the heat and the cold. We have not reached that stage. I wish we had; but how can we change the mould in which we are cast? Mahatma Gandhi wrote a letter to Devdas Gadndhi on dated 29 June 1925 that If I do not write this postcard, I am afraid, I may not be able to write at all. I have your beautiful letter. Your style and Gujarati both are excellent. It would be nice if you start writing something for Y. I. and N. J. I am busy collecting funds. Krishnadas has not received the letters. It is good that Ba spins. I too cannot tell you the names and particulars of all the progeny of Ota Gandhi. It is well that you havestarted collecting this literature. I have heard that Uttamchand Bapa had six sons. Khushalbhai may be able to give you more information. Tell Bal Gangadhar that I am very happy that he has come. I have no misgivings whatever about him. Doing well to others never harms anyone. Even the mistakes of Balkrishna lead ultimately to his advancement. Mahatma Gandhi wrote a letter to Devdas Gadndhi on dated 9 December 1925 that the state of your health causes me anxiety. I see that because of it Mahadev cannot come. Why should Mahadev have to be detained for Navajivan when you are there? I always feel you do not take proper care of your health and commit irregularities. Can you not relieve me of worries? It is good if you take some rest. Avantikabai will write to you. Stay with her or do what you think proper. Keep writing to me. I have also spoken to Swami. Mahatma Gandhi wrote a letter to Devdas Gadndhi on dated 27 March 1926 that your letters are getting more and more scarce. I hope you will not lapse ultimately into the practice of writing an annual Diwali letter. Ramdas and Jaisukhlal have come today. I have not been able to exchange more than a casual word with them. I may not perhaps go to Mussoorie before the 15th of April. I shall know more about this in a day or two when I get a telegram. Dr. Suresh Banerji of the Abhoy Ashram is at present here. He will stay till Tuesday. Mahatma Gandhi wrote a letter to Devdas Gadndhi on dated 7 April 1926 that I have your letter. Since you had such an illness, how well it would have been if you had informed me of it immediately. There was no need to hide it from me. I have often found that by this sort of false kindness people have been unkind to me. Jaundice can be cured very easily. For this there is no remedy like fasting. It soon subsides with fasting and flushing by drinking plenty of water, and the appetite is restored. I have never believed in the theory that a patient grows weaker by withstanding hunger or by fasting. If you must take buttermilk, all butter should be removed from it. Curds cannot be taken in any case. Rice is an un-necessary burden. I remember in the year 1896 I had a severe attack of jaundice. At that time I had trust in the prescriptions only of Manishankar Vaid. He had administered to me some mixture with sodium. the main treatment was, however, a fast. For about ten days I was allowed to have neither milk, nor buttermilk nor rice. These ten days I was allowed only some fresh fruits, i.e., oranges, grapes and sugarcane. No sugar. I did not have to lie down for a single day, and all the while I went about my business. At that time I used to move about quite a lot for the South African cause. I suggest you should come over here; you can soon recover with treatment. You may stay as long as Rajagopalachari is there. You may spend a day or two in talking to Pyarelal and introducing him to the job. Mahatma Gandhi wrote a letter to Devdas Gadndhi on dated 9 May 1926 that I got today all your letters, all the three. I do not understand how this has happened. By the time you get this letter it will be more than twenty-four hours since the operation, and you will be chatting happily with friends. I do not now feel worried at any time. I have never felt frightened by an operation, though I once witnessed an operation which resulted in the patient’s death. But I could see that it was all due to the doctor’s absolute incompetence. This happened in Johannesburg. Kumi has come here today. She was certain that Ba would be here. Panditji has arrived today, and so the Ashram is again becoming full. I am not giving other news in this letter to you; I am writing about it to Jamnalalji. I advise you to employ this enforced leisure for looking within. Mahatma Gandhi wrote a letter to Devdas Gadndhi on dated 23 May 1926 that I have your letter, as also Girdhari’s. I was really very happy that the operation on Lalji was over in a very short time. I shall expect a letter tomorrow giving more news about him. I am very glad that he is in the room next to yours. For one thing, we shall occupy less space in the hospital; there will be, moreover, less trouble for those people and the two of you feel cheered by being near each other. All this should please you. I have returned without anxiety on your account, but I have realized that, even after having completely recovered, you will have to take good care of yourself. There will beno danger for you provided you take the necessary precautions. I am sure I shall hear from you regularly Mahatma Gandhi wrote a letter to Devdas Gadndhi on dated 25 May 1926 that I got your two letters together today. Your second letter is rather disturbing, but such ups and down are nothing unusual and I am not worried. It seems now that Shri Lalji and you will be discharged at the same time. Whatever that be, I should continue to get detailed news, shouldn’t I? There was a telegram today about Finland, saying that the Geneva Committee has accepted my terms. Even then, pending a reply to my letter, I will not proceed on the assumption that I am going through now it does seem to me that I shall be going. Even if I go, it is best that you spend a few days with Jamnalalji in Mussoorie. Mahatma Gandhi wrote a letter to Devdas Gadndhi on dated 26 May 1926 that I got your letter, and also Lalji’s. Yesterday I dictated my letter in a hurry, and so one thing was left out. The faintness that you felt when you tried to stand up was not weakness, it was the result of your not having had the practice of standing and walking for some time. Perhaps you may not remember that, when Colonel Maddock permitted me to walk to the lavatory during daytime, he warned me that my legs might tremble and I might feel giddy, but told me not to be alarmed on that account. After you have walked once or twice with some support, you will get back the ability to walk. Hence I am not in the least worried because of your having felt giddy when you tried to stand up. But I also see that your wound has not completely healed; this is a common enough experience in such operations. No doctor can understand all the facts about the condition of the patient’s body, and, therefore, some complication always develops after an operation, but it can be easily cured. The only thing is that the period of your convalescence is becoming a little too long. I have now concluded that Lalji and you will be discharged at about the same time. This, I think, should please you, though what you wanted was that you should get well but should have the privilege of staying on for Lalji’s sake. It seems that you will not have that privilege. If, however, all our wishes were granted, would not the world perish? As against one good wish, based on regard for truth, entertained by one person, how many wicked wishes, based on disregard for truth, would there be entertained by others? Mahatma Gandhi wrote a letter to Devdas Gadndhi on dated 18 June 1926 that It would appear that you have taken a vow not to write. In Bombay the rule was well observed, but from Mussoorie one letter has been received for the whole Ashram. Eschew laziness. If Jamnadasji cannot come here on the 26th, he should not worry. His health is also somewhat indifferent. It is therefore imperative that he should get perfectly fit Mahatma Gandhi wrote a letter to Devdas Gadndhi on dated 25 June 1926 that Along with this I send you Bhai Tulsidas’s letter. Velabehn is indisposed since last night. Her old ailment has recurred while she was in Bombay. Tell Bhai Laxmidas that there is nothing to worry about. Rajendrababu has arrived and would stay here up to the 29th or 30th. He has come here for a meeting of the Charkha Sangh. It will meet tomorrow. The German lady3 is expected here tomorrow. Mahatma Gandhi wrote a letter to Devdas Gadndhi on dated 3 August 1926 that I got your letter. I don’t know when Dr. Ansari is likely to come here. His speech was reported in the papers and I read it. I think the speech was an emotional outburst. I have no doubt at all about his noble views. But he cannot devote himself whole-heartedly to anything except his professional work. Similar is the case with Hakim Saheb. His heart is in the right place, but he lacks the strength to sacrifice everything for the sake of the cause. Maualana Abul Kalam Azad is indeed a Maulana. I do not set much value on the manifesto. A mere seven hundred cannot help our cause. In a situation in which the truth cannot come out, what can we hope from goodness? One cannot take interest in parliamentary activities and also work for Hindu-Muslim unity, for the two are incompatible with each other. I certainly do not want that the Maharaja or the Maharani of Nabha should do only one thing, spin on the charkha, but I think that, if they are at all likely to take up such work, it would be better and easier to teach them to spin on the takli Mahatma Gandhi wrote a letter to Devdas Gadndhi on dated 4 September 1926 that I have your letter. The description of‘‘sparrow” is very good. I would let him know nothing about the things you mention. You have, however, put me on my guard and so there need be no fear. He has the weakness which you mention, but it will soon pass. His virtues are enduring. He is full of compassion and good-natured beyond measure. Intolerance is a form of pride. But these weaknesses seem trivial beside his virtues. Since he is under your charge, I do not worry. I am sure you have seen his letter to me. It is beautiful. I am not losing weight at such a rate. It stands at about 99. I believe I am in very good health. There must be many rulers worse than the Maharaja of Nabha. I believe that there are some. To be sure his oppression was not a little. I believe, however, that the Government did not depose him for his faults though. I also believe that it would not have been able to do so if he had been free from them. Mahatma Gandhi wrote a letter to Devdas Gadndhi on dated 18 September 1928 that when I address someone with ‘thou’ in speaking; it is even more appropriate and expressive of love to do so in letters also. That is why sometimes you cease to be ‘you’ and become ‘thou’. True love does not speak and often does not even act, and yet it cannot but be felt. Though I thus know that ‘you’ and ‘thou’ are mere external forms, I have adopted a certain style of addressing persons in letters which I have now started following in writing to you children, too. Mahatma Gandhi wrote a letter to Devdas Gadndhi on dated 12 November 1928 that today is the new moon day, and also my silence day. I am therefore writing this letter for the pleasure of doing so. I had preserved the statement of account sent by you. I examined it today in the smallest detail. I do find a few things about which I would like to have further explanation, but on the whole there is nothing to object to. My New Year blessings to you that you may follow the path of goodness and keep good health. My health is all right. Mahatma Gandhi wrote a letter to Devdas Gadndhi on dated 9 February 1929 that I have just now got your two telegrams here at Larkana. I also got Dr. Ansari’s telegram. The telegram arrived while food was being brought in for me. I took my meal as usual and kept on working as I ate. Now I sit down to write this. My programme here will remain as already fixed. This is what I feel now. Rasik’s death certainly pains me, but that is only because of selfishness. I love the boy. I had placed high hopes on him. God will in some mysterious way fulfil through him the hopes we had of him. But how are we, human beings, to remain steadfast in such faith? Our pain at his departure is the result of our selfishness. As for Rasik he has been freed from the pains to which the body is subject. I have no doubt that he is in a better state in the other world, for he was a devotee of Rama. You will feel the greatest pain of all, though you may not show it. What you did is beyond praise. You will have the reward of your services to him. Your fortitude will lead to your progress. Rasik died through no fault of yours. He went to Delhi to collect the debt owing to him, and departed when it had been paid. You did your duty well. God will certainly bless you. Mahatma Gandhi wrote a letter to Devdas Gadndhi on dated 5 February 1930 that I have your letter. There was also a long letter which deserved to be read by all. So I had it passed on to Mahadev, who may already have sent you some reply. Your letter of today has not impressed me. The earlier one did. In today’s letter I notice fatigue. The meanings you read in the speeches of Benn and the Viceroy are forced. If you read my recent articles carefully you will find in them the answers to all your arguments. The eleven points I have put forward1 have silenced even a bitter critic of mine like Natarajan. He believes that my demand is perfectly just. Why don’t you understand that neither Benn nor the Viceroy is willing to concede even a single one of those demands or could do so even if he were willing? To make that possible responsible Englishmen will have to educate the British public opinion. Till that is done nothing is possible. Mahatma Gandhi wrote a letter to Devdas Gadndhi on dated 22 February 1930 that You will have received my reply to your wire. Now I am awaiting your letter. A letter to the Viceroy will go from here on the 2nd. You will see everything if you are here at the time. It will not be surprising at all if they arrest me any day after the 4th. Let those who wish to join you in the march, have patience for the present. My desire, if I myself lead the march, is to keep you with me. Alternatively, I may send you in the first batch and try to follow after all of you have been arrested. They are sure to arrest me to prevent all this. In that case you should court arrest. And after that most of the Ashram inmates should get themselves arrested. I should like you to be here at least to enable me to give you a complete picture of this plan.

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