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Gandhi's Way: A Handbook of Conflict Resolution [Secure eReader]
eBook by Mark Juergensmeyer

eBook Category: Self Improvement
eBook Description: Gandhi's Way provides a primer of Mahatma Gandhi's principles of moral action and conflict resolution. It offers a straightforward, step-by-step approach that can be used in any conflict--at home or in business; in local, national, or international arenas. Juergensmeyer sets out Gandhi's basic methods and illustrates them with practical examples to show how parties at odds can rise above a narrow view of self-interest to find resolutions that are satisfying and beneficial to all involved. The author pits Gandhi's ideas against those of other great social thinkers in a series of imaginary debates that challenge and clarify Gandhi's thinking on issues of violence, anger, and love. He also provides a Gandhian critique of Gandhi himself, and offers viable solutions to some of the gaps in Gandhian theory.

eBook Publisher: University of California Press, Published: 2002
Fictionwise Release Date: December 2003




"A fascinating, thought-provoking, helpful and heartening book."--Marjorie Lewellyn Marks, Los Angeles Times

"Juergensmeyer's book is something of a Gandhian tour de force--a careful analysis and series of applications of Gandhi's concepts of satyagraha by one of America's Gandhi scholars to everyday situations with which most Western readers are familiar."--Joe Elder, Religious Studies Review

"A crisply written, cogently argued little manual exploring the practical implications of satyagraha ('truth force')."--Kirkus Reviews

"This is a manual of instruction in the best sense: a popular reassessment of the activist use of satyagraha in conflict resolution that has depth and a true appreciation for the ethical subtleties of dialectical struggles, and for the multiple dimensions of 'passive resistance.'"--Library Journal


Gandhi was a fighter. Whatever else one might say about him--that he was a saint, a clever politician, or a "seditious fakir," as Winston Churchill once put it--Gandhi certainly knew how to fight. In fact, his approach to conflict resolution is one of Mohandas Gandhi's most enduring legacies. For a pacifist, Gandhi was not very passive. "Where there is only a choice between cowardice and violence, I would advice violence," he once said, not because he welcomed bloodshed, but because he favored engagement. He had little respect for passivity, and even less for moral weakness.

To Gandhi, fighting has its benefits. An appreciation of the other point of view enhances one's own perspective. We are all limitied to our own angle of vision, Gandhi said. Through fighting, one gains a broader view of truth.

Gandhi's way of fighting has two dimensions. One is to imagine a solution that includes the best features of both sides. He pioneered in what is now called the "win-win" approach to conflict resolution. The second is even more innovative: to incorporate the solution into the struggle itself. In Gandhi's view, the way you fight and the goal for which you are fighting are the same.

This way of fighting took Gandhi years to refine and he never explained it in a simple systematic fashiopn. He wrote incessantsly--there are over ninety volumes of his collected writings--but he was teribly untidy in the way he formulated his thoughts. Gandhi's ethical positions often came from action as well as reflection. To understand Gandhi's approach to fighting, then, one has to look at what he did as well as what he said.

My task in this book is to make Gandhi make sense. I have explored his writings, read what has been written about him, observed Gandhians in action in India and in the West, and attempted to discern a logic running throughout. At the heart of his approach, I believe, lies a simple and integrated scheme that can be taken seriously by any sensible person.


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