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Mikhel D. V., Mikhel I. V. Holding onto Truth: Philosophy and Politics of Mahatma Gandhi. Izvestiya of Saratov University. Philosophy. Psychology. Pedagogy, 2019, vol. 19, iss. 3, pp. 272-276. DOI:

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Holding onto Truth: Philosophy and Politics of Mahatma Gandhi

The article is devoted to understanding the concept of “holding onto truth” (Satyagraha), which was developed by Mahatma Gandhi in the process of his struggle against British racism and colonialism. The purpose is to analyze the formation of the Satyagraha philosophy in the context of the life path of Gandhi and his political activities. The novelty of the proposed approach is determined by the desire of the authors to consider the philosophy of Satyagraha in comparison with the thesis of K. Marx that philosophy can change the world. According to the results of the study, the authors have come to the following conclusions. The formation of the philosophical ideas of Gandhi was influenced by his religious beliefs, which began to form during his studies in England, as well as the events that occurred in 1893 in South Africa, when he first fell victim to racial prejudice. A clear awareness of the meaning of the Satyagraha was affirmed by Gandhi in 1906 during the period of the struggle against the discriminatory “Black Law” adopted by the authorities of the Transvaal. The emergence of the Satyagraha philosophy coincided with the process of the spiritual transformation of Gandhi and his conversion from a law-abiding British gentleman into a Satyagrahi, or subject holding onto truth. The development of the principles of Satyagraha coincided with the struggle for the “Hind Swaraj” – Indian home rule, and then the independence for India. During the struggle for Swaraj, which lasted for more than thirty years, the philosophy of Satyagraha became the basis for Gandhi's political activity and the ability to change the world without inciting to violence.


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