Non-violent Resistance - Section Ninth: Miscellaneous Summary & Analysis

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Section Ninth: Miscellaneous Summary and Analysis

This chapter contains various reflections of importance but that are not tied together by a single theme. Gandhi first claims that fasting can be understood as a form of penance for sin and he gives an example of his own penance. He goes on a seven-day fast due to an error in the conduct of his Ashram children. He then distinguishes true and false Satyagraha. Satyagraha cannot be pursued out of personal gain or it will not be successful. The Satyagrahi must not resist for himself or to hurt an opponent; he must resist rather for the common good.

Next Gandhi emphasizes the inportance of fasting as part of Satyagraha and as prayer. He denies that fasting is coercive despite trying to alter the behavior of others. However, he also emphasizes that fasting should only be pursued as a last result. Fasting for Gandhi is also a form of self-surrender. He emphasizes that he cannot understand his Protestant friends' aversion to fasting since it involves mortification of the flesh which brings spiritual progress.

A proper Satyagraha fast requires the proper will behind it and he again denies that fasts are coercive. They can be coercive but these are fasts to attain a selfish object. He then argues that fasting is a potent weapon for the Satyagrahi. However, it is far from infallible. Satyagraha is dangerous and serious and should only be used when there are no other avenues of redress.

In the following, Gandhi addresses the women of India. He is excited that women want to join the good fight and thinks that it is a healthy sign. Their contribution will be greater than men's because men are more wont to harm women than other men. Gandhi has thought on the matter for years and he now will allow it. He also argues that women should engage in bringing about the prohibition of intoxicating liquor and drugs and boycotting foreign cloth. Women should take up these activities. While women complain that there is no excitement in these activities, they should not be involved for excitement.

Subsequently, Gandhi discusses the conference of women in Gujarat and the women resolve to engage in Satyagraha in the ways proscribed by Gandhi. Gandhi thinks this movement of great importance. Gandhi then claims that men should not interfere with women picketing liquor and foreign cloth shops. Women should manufacture khadi, or clothes, within the home.

Gandhi turns to various notes. He mentions the importance of the frontier provinces and discusses the bartering of cloth within the Satyagrahi. He then advises his followers on the proper method of women picketing. They are similar to the principles of Satyagraha civil disobedience. He reproves foreign cloth sellers in a later sub-section and argues that picketing is not coercive in another one. Picketing should be peaceful and can be done out of love.

In the third collection of notes, Gandhi discusses the role of Satyagraha in social reform. He argues that students can engage in noble Satyagraha. He encourages these students to engage in non-cooperation with their families if they engage in caste behavior. Gandhi is excited about the enthusiasm of the students.

In a further sub-section, Gandhi argues that Satyagraha should not be used to stop marrying young girls to older men because this will push the weddings into secrecy. However, it can be used to fight apartheid in Africa. Gandhi believes that the German persecution of the Jews is the worst in history. He is worried that the Jews cannot fight the persecution or maintain their self-respect. Gandhi encourages the Jews to not lose hope and to employ Satyagraha.

Gandhi must address how Satyagraha is supposed to deal with crime, as it seems difficult to apply to individuals. He argues that criminals should be cured and no one should bear ill-will towards them. The Satyagrahi should teach him a vocation and help him make an honest living. In these cases, criminals could not engage in crime. Finally, Gandhi argues that truth and ahimsa must generate socialism but that the voting public must have a living faith in God. Socialism can only be reached in this way.

This section contains 701 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
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