Satyagraha

on 20 February 2009

I have rediscovered a beloved word recently and I figured I would share it with you and the meaning that it has in my life. This word is Satyagraha. I originally discovered it in Orson Scott Card's book Shadow of the Hegemon, a great read by the way, but it was originally coined by Ghandi.
He took two Sanskrit words the word for truth and firmness and coined the term Satyagraha. The definition that was given by Ghandi then for Satyagraha was the firmness of truth, but I enjoy the poetry of Card much better when he stated that Satygraha is "the willingness to endure great personal suffering in order to do what is right."
Sometimes what is right isn't friendly, it isn't peaceful, it isn't fulfilling, it isn't gratifying. What matters is that you do not hide from the consequences. You bear what must be borne. It might be like courage, the courage to do what is right even when you can't win. If you know that the price of doing right is a terrible loss or suffering or even death, satyagraha, means that you are all the more determined to do right, for fear that fear might make you unrighteous.
While in and of itself, Satyagraha is very difficult to achieve when you know what is right, it is infinitely harder when you are unclear about what is right. As you have seen, I am still trying to figure out what is right, but I hope to, once knowing, be able to achieve satyagraha and follow that truth firmly, no matter the greatness of my personal suffering.
As this concept is ingrained in my mind, I am always looking for new words or methods to describe it, do any jump into your mind?

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1 comments:

Alan said...

Integrity and courage.

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