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September 5, 2009 / theoldsilly

A Saturday Pontification – Mahatmaisms

GhandiOnce again quoting the late and great Hindu pacifist spiritual leader, Mahatma Ghandi, for today’s message. This one is a favorite of mine, and an indictment on the sad state of “Churchianity” insidiously posturing as real spiritual Christianity in our contemporary society. Ghandi once said, to a group of Christians who were touting their spiritual path as being superior to his:

“I like your Christ very much. I do not much care for your Christians. They are not very Christ-like.”


And before you click off into the Blue Nowhere, please enjoy this short true story about Ghandi-

One day a woman brought her child before Ghandi and said, “Mahatma – please instruct my boy to stop eating sugar.” (In the Hindu tradition, sugar is a no-no … considered indulgent and self-gratifying, not a good habit for anyone who is truly a spiritualist)

Ghandi paused before responding. He said, “Please bring him back to me in two weeks and I will advise him then.”

The woman was confused, but did as instructed. Two weeks later, she again brought the boy to Ghandi and made the same request.

Ghandi smiled at the lad and said, “Young man, I would ask you to honor your mother as well as myself and refrain from eating sugar.”

The woman could not help but ask, “Great teacher, I am so curious … why did you have us to wait two weeks before you would say this to him?”

Ghandi said, “Because up until two weeks ago, I was still eating sugar.”


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  1. Stanley Berber / Sep 5 2009 7:18 am

    I too love that quote, because it is so true. More hypocricy exists in the church than in a room full of politicians. And the story about suger – how perfect! How can we judge others when we have bad habits oursleves? Great post today, Marv.

    • theoldsilly / Sep 5 2009 9:19 am

      That’s right Stan – as JC once said, “Ye who is without sin among you, let him cast the first stone.”

  2. Ron Berry / Sep 5 2009 7:30 am

    That’s interesting about sugar. I never knew that. I don’t go to church for the very same reason. I don’t need a building full of people showing off their finery to believe. Ghandi made a good point, as always.

    • Liana / Sep 5 2009 8:41 am

      I don’t go to church-no use…some things have to change eventually…and people should become less fanatic about religions. But I think it’s just ignorance that triggers fanaticism in religion, people are left to live in the medieval times.

      • theoldsilly / Sep 5 2009 9:20 am

        Totally agree with you, Liana. In an enlightened spiritual society there would be no need or organized bureaucratic “religion.”

  3. Cactus Annie / Sep 5 2009 9:13 am

    Amen to that – I’ve always marveled that Sunday is the most segregated day in America. Ghandi was a great teacher and leader. Thanks for sharing this today, Marv.

    • theoldsilly / Sep 5 2009 9:22 am

      Cactus you’re welcome. I’ve also been amazed that churches are divided into “blacks go here” “Whites go here” “Asians go here” and so forth.

  4. Karen Walker / Sep 5 2009 9:21 am

    Gandhi is one of my heroes and I love this quote so much. These Saturday pontifications of yours would make a great collection, Marvin. Any thoughts on turning to non-fiction?

    • theoldsilly / Sep 5 2009 9:23 am

      Karen, that’s a pretty darn good idea! 😉

  5. John Standish / Sep 5 2009 10:11 am

    Total amens from me on this post, dude.

  6. Elizabeth Spann Craig / Sep 5 2009 10:18 am

    I’ve carefully selected a church where the sermons are academic. I guess it’s a throwback to college days for me. I don’t do group things there….I don’t want to encounter unChristian behavior. 🙂 So I guess I’ve adapted my experiences to suit me.

    Mystery Writing is Murder

  7. quirkyloon / Sep 5 2009 11:57 am

    Sugar is bad. That’s why I only drink DIET Dr. Pepper.


    Great quote to start some Saturday thinkin’!

  8. yvonne lewis / Sep 5 2009 12:05 pm

    A very good quote Marvin. also a very good post.


  9. Helen Ginger / Sep 5 2009 2:12 pm

    Love the Ghandi story. A very wise man, Ghandi. I think he gets overlooked by the “establishment.”

    Straight From Hel

  10. ettarose / Sep 5 2009 5:07 pm

    Ghandi was the best! So many people need to read the story about sugar and then adjust their lives. I know many people who are false Christians. It gives Christianity such a bad rap.

  11. ReformingGeek / Sep 5 2009 9:03 pm

    I love that quote. I wonder what some people define as “Christ-like”.

  12. Natasha / Sep 9 2009 1:12 am

    Read this only today. That quote is so true of the so called followers of most organised religions. People tend to get so carried away by the religious aspects of it, they forget the real message of the religion.

    Just a tiny gripe, if you don’t mind. An Indian would phonetically translate his name to GandHi. I know most of the movies pronounce his name as Ghandi, but the ‘h’ is actually interchanged.

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