Mahatma Gandhi

Mahatma Gandhi was a leader and a friend to all throughout his life. He dedicated his life to fostering the philosophy of nonviolent action and spreading this concept throughout the world. Born on October 2, 1869, Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi did not live an easy life. He struggled to find freedom for his countrymen and to spread his belief in nonviolent resistance. Given the name Mahatma, meaning "great soul", he spread his message across the globe.

Traveling to England as a young man, Gandhi studied law and was admitted to the bar. Already married to Kasturba Gandhi, leaving India was difficult. While in England he experimented with food, clothing and social mores, believing that he must dress like an Englishman to succeed. Gandhi returned to India at the age of 22 to establish a law practice in Bombay. Unfortunately, he was so shy, that it was impossible for him to speak in front of the court. Thus, when a friend offered him a job in South Africa, he felt it was his only option.
It was in South Africa, that Gandhi first experienced racial discrimination. There, he began his fight to end prejudice and achieve equality for people of all races. During this time he began to change, studying the Bhagavad Gita, the Christian Bible, and the writings of Thoreau, Ruskin and Tolstoy. He decided to forget wealth and fineries and focus instead on self-improvement. Together with Kasturba, Gandhi founded Phoenix Ashram, a community in which people came to live together and treated each other equally and with respect. Using marches, letters, articles, community meetings and boycotts, he protested racial discrimination. His very first public protest was on September 11, 1906 in Johannesburg. These protests often led to his arrest.

After 21 years in South Africa, Gandhi returned to India to fight for India's independence from Great Britain. In addition to the methods he used in South Africa, Gandhi would add fasting, prayer to his system of nonviolence. He spent numerous days in jail with the goal of showing people, that violence is not the answer. During his long life, he would inspire and encourage many to follow his same path. His legacy includes many books and writings, but most importantly his spirit that lives on today.

Dr. Arun Gandhi

Born in 1934 in Durban, South Africa, Arun is the fifth grandson of India’s legendary leader, Mohandas K. “Mahatma” Gandhi. Growing up under the discriminatory apartheid laws of South Africa, he was beaten by “white” South Africans for being too black and “black” South Africans for being too white; so, Arun sought eye-for-an-eye justice. However, he learned from his parents and grandparents that justice does not mean revenge, it means transforming the opponent through love and suffering.

Grandfather taught Arun to understand nonviolence through understanding violence. “If we know how much passive violence we perpetrate against one another we will understand why there is so much physical violence plaguing societies and the world,” Gandhi said. Through daily lessons, Arun says, he learned about violence and about anger.

Arun shares these lessons all around the world. For the past five years, he has participated in the Renaissance Weekend deliberations with President Clinton and other well-respected Rhodes Scholars.

Arun is very involved in social programs and writing as well. Shortly after Arun married his wife Sunanda, they were informed the South African government would not allow her to accompany him there. Sunanda and Arun decided to live in India, and Arun worked for 30 years as a journalist for The Times of India. Together, Arun and Sunanda started projects for the social and economic upliftment of the oppressed using constructive programs, the backbone of Gandhi’s philosophy of nonviolence. Arun Gandhi and Sunanda are the founder of the
M. K. Gandhi Institute for Nonviolence and The Gandhi Worldwide Education Institute

Tobias Huber

Founder of the Gandhi Tour lived in India for more than seven years. Inspired by his vision of a huge music event touring around the globe in cause of peace and non-violence, generating the consciousness to enable us to stop global hunger.

Tobias with Dr. Arun Gandhi's blessing created this dynamic musical event to continue to inspire people on the choice of peace and non-violence in life. The first of many events the Gandhi Tour celebrated Gandhi's 100 years of Non-violence with Dr. Arun Gandhi at Earthdance 2006. It is there that the Gandhi Tour began its journey in the cultural peace movement of the 21st century.

Tobias Huber is as well founder of Music 4 Peace

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