GANDHI AND FATHERHOOD
As we celebrate Father’s Day this month, perhaps we can learn a lesson from Mahatma Gandhi. He is remembered as the Father of the Nation, but probably wouldn’t have won any “Father of the Year” awards.
“He should have given more time and attention to his wife and sons, and listened more to them,” Rajmohan Gandhi, noted public intellectual and Mahatma Gandhi’s grandson, said in a recent interview with IANS. “A flawless Gandhi would have been a superb husband and a superb father, in addition to being the astonishing friend and inspirer he was to Indians of every kind.”
Rajmohan, promoting his new book, Why Gandhi Still Matters, added that his grandfather was only too human. “He could not resist an all-consuming passion to liberate an enslaved India, and to make all Indians friendly and if possible forgiving to one another.”
No fathers are perfect, of course, but most fathers have the opportunity to decide how much time they want to spend with their children. To change the old saying slightly, nobody ever said on their deathbed, “I wish I hadn’t spent so much time with my children.”
Compiled and partly written by Indian humorist MELVIN DURAI, author of the novel Bala Takes the Plunge.
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