The Wisdom of Ghandi


February 14, 2008

I assume that most long-term vegetarians have come across the Mahatma Ghandi quote: “The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated,” but not surprisingly, this is only one of many wise things that Ghandi had pontificated on in his lifetime.

With this thought in mind, and my joy of finding inspirational quotes spurring me along, I decided to search for some of his other words of wisdom. I found many compelling and thought-provoking quotes, but here are three that really touched a chord:

“The difference between what we do and what we are capable of doing would suffice to solve most of the world's problems.”

This quote hits me as being very true. It also contains a healthy balance of both optimism and realism. Hopefully, these words have and continue to inspire people to strive for more of what they’re capable of, instead of making the easier choices.

“You may never know what results come of your action, but if you do nothing there will be no result.”

I see the truth in this quote, as well as the need for it. Many people demand obvious, and often immediate results or payoffs for doing good, kind, and/or unselfish deeds. The key to this may be to fall back on using logic and thought. With these tools, we can divine the amazing and far-reaching results of even one act of random kindness.

“The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others.”

This may be my favorite of the three, probably just because of its simplicity of truth. It also supports the previous quote. When we do a random act of kindness, the effect is as great on the giver as it is on the receiver. The sense of joy, self, and confidence one gains as a giver is a positive power that creates purpose and worth in human beings.

I can’t pretend, even for a second, to come up with words that will outdo or even stand along Ghandi’s, so instead I will leave you with my simple e-mail footer:


—Gabrielle Harradine, editorial assistant