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Mahatma Gandhi is known as the father of the nation and right from the childhood we have heard many things about him and his teaching. However, there are many things that people may still not know about him. On his 150th birth anniversary, we present you 10 such things that not many would know about him. 

1. Leo Tolstoy was one of the most favourite authors of Mahatma Gandhi. His book ‘The Kingdom of God is Within You’ and his essay on ‘Christianity and Patriotism’ had a profound impact on Mahatma Gandhi. In 1910, during his stay in South Africa, he established a cooperative colony near Johannesburg, called Tolstoy Farm, having been inspired by Tolstoy’s ideas.

2. America's Martin Luther King Junior too was inspired by Mahatma Gandhi. King Jr learned about Gandhi through his writing and a trip to India in 1959. He was highly inspired by Gandhian principle of nonviolence in his own civil rights activism

3. It is said that once while traveling via train, Gandhi's shoe fell down. He then dropped his other shoe as well saying that this one shoe is of no use to me so whoever finds it can at least make use of it.

4. Mahatma Gandhi was quite a fitness freak and would walk almost 18km every single day!

5. In 1931, Albert Einstein wrote to Gandhi and expressed his admiration for his work. Today on his 150th birth anniversary, Prime Minister Modi too made a reference to this incident and proposed to start what he terms as an Einstein challenge.

In his column in New York Times, he wrote, "As a tribute to Gandhi, I propose what I call the Einstein Challenge. We know Albert Einstein’s famous words on Gandhi: ‘Generations to come will scarce believe that such a one as this ever in flesh and blood walked upon this earth’… I invite thinkers, entrepreneurs and tech leaders to be at the forefront of spreading Gandhi’s ideas through innovation,” Modi wrote.

6. It is said that Mahatma Gandhi drew inspiration from every person around him. He was deeply inspired by Mahavir Jain, Gautam Budha, and Lord Krishna. A copy of Geeta would always be with him at all times.

7. Even though Gandhi had a huge fan following in America, he never visited the country. In his lifetime, he never ever traveled by plane. During the Independence struggle, the maximum pictures that were clicked were of Mahatma Gandhi even though he never liked posing for the pictures. 

8. After India got indepndence a few foreign journalists had come to interview Gandhi and were posing questions to him in English. To which he replied in Hindi, saying that now my country is independent and I will now talk in Hindi only.

9. He was not only a great orator but a great writer as well. 

10. Thoreau’s philosophy of civil disobedience is said to have influenced the political thoughts Mahatma Gandhi. However, he did not derive his idea of ‘civil disobedience’ from the writings of Thoreau. He has started his resistance to authorities in South Africa much before he got the essay of “civil disobedience” by Thoreau. Gandhi called it “passive resistance”. Gandhi did not prefer to use the term “Civil Disobedience” and instead he used another term “Civil Resistance”.

 


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