chapter  4
The possibility of ahimsa?
Pages 74

One of Gandhi’s deepest sorrows during his final days was the stark realisation that his ahimsa had failed. That the cause of his enduring sorrow should be visible to the world was natural. As was the question whether, in the face of the spreading violence in India, he would continue to give the world the message of ahimsa. Letters asking this very question were coming to him from all over the world. Referring to these letters in his written message that was read out after the prayer on 15 June 1947, Gandhi said:

I may have become bankrupt but ahimsa can never suffer bankruptcy. [T]he ahimsa we have practised for 30 years has been nothing but the ahimsa of the weak. [I]n today’s changed situation there is no place for the ahimsa of the weak. In truth, to this day India has not had an opportunity to practise the ahimsa of the brave. Nothing will come of my constant refrain that there is no power in the world equal to the ahimsa of the brave. The only way to prove this truth is by making it apparent in our lives through constant and extensive practice. I have done my utmost to make it evident in my life. But perhaps I lack the capability or maybe I am quixotic, a Sheikh Chilli; then why should I ask people to follow me when nothing comes of it? . . . I don’t ask anyone to follow me. Each individual should heed his inner voice.