Today we celebrate the International Day of Nonviolence held in honor of Mahatma Gandhi's birthday which
Gandhi is known for his non-violence approach to civil disobedience, or satyagraha, which led to India's independence from British rule.
Although his form of protest was peaceful on his behalf, the government officials he opposed weren't. Gandhi and other Indians joining his cause were jailed, often beaten, abused, and/or flogged (whipped).
His peaceful protests gained the attention of people around the globe and the practice of stayagraha is still used today.
Born in 1869, Gandhi was married young and although he went to law school in London, and was accepted into the bar in India, he was not as successful as one might expect. His success came from his protest efforts in South Africa that later infiltrated to India and the world. In 1948, at the age of 78, Ghandi was assasinated by two men who were angry at the way Gandhi had handled a political issue between India and Pakistan.
So practice nonviolence and it doesn't necessarily mean you have to protest any huge cause. Think twice about slamming that door, bumping into someone in the hallway, or cutting that car on the freeway. Take it easy, spread Gandhi's gospel and live happy. It is friday after all. aahhh I love fridays!
To learn more about Gandhi you can check out the Wikipedia entry on him, and he wrote many important books on satyagraha, the struggles of India and Africa, and on his life.
"Freedom is not worth having if it does not include the freedom to make mistakes." -Gandhi
"An eye for an eye makes the whole world blind." -Gandhi