Machiavelli And Gandhi Essay

965 words - 4 pages

Ahimsa is a concept that was practiced by political and ideological leader Mohandas Gandhi; a concept that he used to promote the use of non-violent tactics and passive resistance against colonial rule in India. Mohandas Gandhi used Ahimsa as the means to an end and therefore, ultimately rejected Machiavelli's advice on the qualities a prince must possess to retain his title. Machiavelli advises that the leaders have military experience and, “In peace time he must train himself more than in times of war. This can be done in two ways: one by action, the other by the mind” (Jacobus 40). Ghandi does not have military experience and Ahimsa, loosely translated, means abstinence from violence either by thought, word, or deed. Ahimsa requires a harmless mind, mouth, and hand (Maheshwari). The concept of Ahimsa and the actions of Mohandas Gandhi directly contradict the qualities and practices of a Machiavellian prince or leader.
In Machiavelli’s “The Qualities of the Prince”, Machiavelli states that, "A wise ruler, therefore, cannot and should not keep his word when such an observance of faith would be to his disadvantage" (Jacobus 48). If Mohandas Gandhi had followed the advice of Machiavelli, he would not be revered as the wise and great leader that he was. Mohandas Gandhi used his philosophy called Satyagraha to gain followers and to achieve his goal of freeing India from British colonial rule. Satyagraha is defined as a concept introduced in the early 20th century by Mohandas Gandhi to designate a determined but nonviolent resistance to evil (Encyclopædia Britannica). This requires that a person who decides to break a law considered unjust must accept the consequences of that decision. The use of Satyagraha had brought a lot of hardship to Mohandas and his followers. Many times Mohandas and his followers would be beaten and jailed for keeping their word in the pursuit of an independent India. In the worst case, some of Mohandas’ followers and practitioners of Satyagraha were killed for diligently pursuing the cause of freeing India from British colonial rule. Nevertheless, Mohandas did not waver on his word or his pursuit of resisting the British government in India.
Machiavelli also states in “The Qualities of the Prince”, “he must strive to make everyone recognize in his actions greatness, spirit, dignity, and strength” (Jacobus 50). This advice was stated in the context that it is better to be feared than loved because as a leader it is your responsibility to control and run the state. Mohandas Gandhi dedicated most of his life to freeing India from British colonial rule. He had led thousands and inspired millions in the pursuit of this goal. In Mohandas Gandhi’s autobiography he stated, “The seeker after truth should be humbler than the dust. The world crushes the dust under its feet, but the seeker after truth should so humble himself that even the dust could crush him. Only then, and not till then, will he have a glimpse of truth”...

Find Another Essay On Machiavelli and Gandhi

Means are Matters Essay

1123 words - 5 pages The author E. F. Schumacher in his book titled Small is Beautiful, insisted the quote “End justifies the means” to forward a solution for the economic problems as everybody can be rich. It was a statement that was suggested by Niccolo Machiavelli in his book titled “The Prince”. According to the Wikipedia definition this is an ethical theory of holding that the consequences of one's conduct are the ultimate basis for any judgment about the

Can Terrorism be morally justified? How and when? Or Why not?

2434 words - 10 pages fall under the category stated by Khatchadourian, (1998) as retaliatory terrorism, and using political terrorism as a weapon of the politically powerless and oppressed. As cited by Young (Primoratz, 2004, p. 58), even Gandhi contended that, "it was better to resist oppression by violent means than to submit", in the event that a non-violent response was precluded.The West upholds the view that there can be legitimate uses of war in accordance with

What’s the purpose of testing nuclear power in India?

2400 words - 10 pages , realism has a much longer history in the work of classical political theorists such as Thucydides, Machiavelli, Hobbes, and Rousseau’. Baylis, Smith and Owens (2013, p102) also explained realism by showing that ‘The unifying theme around which all realist thinking converges is that states find themselves in the shadow of anarchy such that their security cannot be taken for granted’. Therefore, realism can be one of theories of world politics to

Leadership and Foreign Policy

2616 words - 11 pages expressed his support for liberalism also quoting John F Kennedy, Martin Luther King and even Gandhi in his justifications for humanitarian intervention. He also added that it was a responsibility of anyone to act upon any evil. President Hugo Chávez of Venezuela also told Latin America that the intervention of Libya was only aimed at oil in Libya. Fukuyama (1992) goes on to argue that the US should promote its own values and morals but at the

Quotes About Guns

3338 words - 13 pages Gandhi in "Gandhi, An Autobiography" "Those who expect to reap the blessings of freedom must, like men, undergo the fatigue of supporting it." -- Thomas Paine " disarm the people (is) the best and most effective way to enslave them..." -- George Mason "The only purpose for which power can be rightfully exercised over any member of a civilized community, against his will, is to prevent harm to others. His own good, either physical

The Joy of Intolerance

4692 words - 19 pages ? If we asked N. Machiavelli this question he would answer that if the aim of an evil action is good then we could allow it since every good aim justifies even the bad means. Didn't Machiavelli reasoning justify aggressiveness, egoism and intolerance? Didn't Gandhi, advocating a permanent battle against evil and lack of tolerance in relation to wrong-doers with whom one should fight without violence and hostility, encourage to fight with the

When the Bubble Burst

1539 words - 6 pages By the time I arrived state side from my second tour in the Middle East the housing bubble had already burst. I noticed a drastic change in the way that many of my friends and family were living. Several of my friends that worked in real estate had sold their boats and seconds houses. My own stock portfolio had lost a third of its value. My sister and her husband had defaulted on their home mortgage leaving them scrambling for a place to live. I

phase diagram

4456 words - 18 pages Introduction: Chemical equilibrium is a crucial topic in Chemistry. To represent and model equilibrium, the thermodynamic concept of Free energy is usually used. For a multi-component system the Gibbs free energy is a function of Pressure, Temperature and quantity (mass, moles) of each component. If one of these parameters is changed, a state change to a more energetically favorable state will occur. This state has the lowest free energy

Revolutionary Work of Art

1890 words - 8 pages Walter Benjamin emphasizes in his essay, “The Work of Art in the Age of its Technological Reproducibility” that technology used to make an artwork has changed the way it was received, and its “aura”. Aura represents the originality and authenticity of a work of art that has not been reproduced. The Sistine Chapel in the Vatican is an example of a work that has been and truly a beacon of art. It has brought a benefit and enlightenment to the art

Enlightenment Thought in New Zealand Schools

1594 words - 6 pages In this essay I will be looking at how the political and intellectual ideas of the enlightenment have shaped New Zealand Education. I will also be discussing the perennial tension of local control versus central control of education, and how this has been affected by the political and intellectual ideas of the enlightenment. The enlightenment was an intellectual movement, which beginnings of were marked by the Glorious Revolution in Britain

Psychological Egoism Theory

2240 words - 9 pages The theory of psychological egoism is indeed plausible. The meaning of plausible in the context of this paper refers to the validity or the conceivability of the theory in question, to explain the nature and motivation of human behavior (Hinman, 2007). Human actions are motivated by the satisfaction obtained after completing a task that they are involved in. For example, Mother Teresa was satisfied by her benevolent actions and

Similar Essays

Gandhi And His Effort To Free India

1292 words - 5 pages can find ways and means of reducing physical violence in the practice of politics."(The Meanings of Gandhi Paul F. Power pg. 185) "On the other hand, Machiavelli, a Roman leader, was not denying the effectiveness of moral goodness, but he was denying its claim as a specific means of politics. He distrusted the dependability of human nature to do well. He believed that the man who makes professions of goodness amongst so many whom are evil would

The Elements Of Fantasy And Horror

1591 words - 6 pages greatly help unravel the theme in Something Wicked This Way Comes. In the first place, they illustrate symbols of good and evil, with Jim as the darker of the two and Will as the lighter. Charles can see that this appears obvious, and he points it out to the kids. He states, “[Jim] wears the black ten-gallon hats and reads books to fit. Middle name’s Moriarty, right, Jim? Any day now he’ll move up from Fu Manchu to Machiavelli here” (15). The black

Analyzing Shakespeare´S Account Of Human Nature In King Lear In Comparison With Other Authors

1697 words - 7 pages with Niccolò Machiavelli and his infamous political treatise The Prince. Machiavelli claims that “Men have less hesitation to offend one who makes himself loved than one who makes himself feared: for love is held by a chain of obligation, which, because men are wicked, is broken at every opportunity for their own utility, but fear is held by a dread of punishment that never forsakes you” (66-67). While Shakespeare presents us with a spectrum

Responses To Three Issues In Government: Morality, Conservativism And Sartre's The Wretched Of The Earth

1765 words - 7 pages standards of morality? Do you? Would Socrates disagree with Kennan? Would Kennan agree with Machiavelli that a Prince should learn "how to be other than good and to use or not to use his goodness as necessity requires." Explain your answer. What are the implications of Kennan's comments on "defense has developed into a national addiction" (Hazan 277) for international affairs. Is this "addiction a case of a society "captive to its own lies?" Does