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Gandhi: An autobiography

4.07  ·  Rating details ·  44,287 ratings  ·  1,779 reviews
Mohandas K. Gandhi is one of the most inspiring figures of our time. In his classic autobiography he recounts the story of his life and how he developed his concept of active nonviolent resistance, which propelled the Indian struggle for independence and countless other nonviolent struggles of the twentieth century.

In a new foreword, noted peace expert and teacher Sissela
Paperback, 528 pages
Published November 1st 1993 by Beacon Press (first published 1927)
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si_si96 I think that a 13 year old would be fine understanding the topics discussed in the book. He doesn't tackle subjects thatare accessible to only…moreI think that a 13 year old would be fine understanding the topics discussed in the book. He doesn't tackle subjects thatare accessible to only academic types but subjects on everyday life. However, I don't think a 13 year old would be particularily interested in this book (if they were anything like me when I was 13). The topics discussed are probably of more interest to an older audience, I would say.(less)
si_si96 I would describe it more as insightful and thought provoking. I was not inspred to go out and change the world after reading but just felt I had…moreI would describe it more as insightful and thought provoking. I was not inspred to go out and change the world after reading but just felt I had gained a new insight from his experiences.(less)

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Sean Barrs the Bookdragon
Gandhi has no energy whatsoever. I think the main problem with him writing his own autobiography is his complete lack of ego. He is too modest. He is too accommodating. And he is too good.

Wonderful characteristics for sure; they clearly served him well in his role as a civil rights leader, though they make him rather ill-equipped to write his own story. There is absolutely no passion within his writing, no fire, no strength and certainly no sense of long term goals or aspirations within the
Riku Sayuj
fundamentally changed my view of the world...

Oft In My Thought

Ah, how often I have sought in my days,

To emulate the great leaders, and be gently led,

By their virtuous actions and well-laid plans.

How often I charted the best courses to take

To reach those heights of thought and action;

And thought evermore of what best will portray

Their everlasting influence on this humble self,

That will make this world to be as they always saw,

In their lofty wishes and their fanciful dreams.

But all those
Oct 07, 2007 rated it really liked it
This was a fascinating read. Gandhi's writing is oddly simple, even almast naive in places. He faithfully records small personal struggles, giving them the same wieght as major political battles. Gandhi's zeal and idealism comes across powerfully, as does his lifelong concern with self-discipline and purity (bramacharya).

I was especially interested in his evolving understanding of satyagraha and his increasingly strict vegetarianism. His ascetism increased in direct proportion to his growing
Tyler Jones
Jul 23, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: non-violence
Excuse the ramblings of a mind coping to understand...this really is a book review...of sorts.

Yesterday, a man in Oslo set off a bomb that killed seven people then went to a kid's camp and killed eighty four young people. The world is sickened. Why do these things happen? Details are still coming out. At first I heard an Islamic militant group had claimed responsibility. Now it seems that the killer may be an extreme anti-islamic; a christian fundamentalist. What is clear is that somehow he was
Jeff Lanter
Apr 04, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: history
After seeing the movie biopic, I knew I needed to find out more about Gandhi so I picked this up. Don't let the width of the book fool you, it isn't a thousand pages like it appears. The translation of the book is actually pretty good and it reads easily. For the most part, Gandhi spends time talking about the little details in his life before he became famous. That is sort of the opposite of what you would expect in an autobiography, but as he says, his life was well known by then. This may ...more
Ahmad Sharabiani
Satyanā Prayogo Athavā ātmakathā = The Story of My Experiments with Truth, Mahatma Gandhi
The Story of My Experiments with Truth is the autobiography of Mohandas K. Gandhi, covering his life from early childhood through to 1921. It was written in weekly installments and published in his journal Navjivan from 1925 to 1929. Its English translation also appeared in installments in his other journal Young India. It was initiated at the insistence of Swami Anand and other close co-workers of Gandhi,
Oct 29, 2012 rated it it was ok
Intended for a very limited audience

My copy of the book had torn spine, small print, dog-eared cover and the quality of paper so inferior, that it set a new precedent for me -- but I shouldn't complain because a friend of mine had lent it to me.

Let me first clarify something about this book's genre. Gandhi says in the foreword that this book was a memoir of 'his experiments with truth', thus the subtitle; but he particularly says that this was not an autobiography. He gives his reasons for
Nov 10, 2016 rated it it was amazing
One of those books that needs to be read periodically if only to remind yourself that someone out there sometime thought that transformation, liberation, hell just plain living, without violence was possible. It's not the violence that scares me personally as much as the anger. There's still some restrictions on the use of violence but anger's got the world's green light. Be angry even as you defend peace. Be angry on behalf of goodness and beauty. Be angry or you don't care. So you read about ...more
Apr 16, 2018 rated it really liked it
One of the most influential people to have ever lived.
This book should be essential reading for anyone working in the legal sector, in social justice and human rights, and anyone remotely interested in contemporary history and the great men and women of our time.
Description: In 1999, this book was designated as one of the ''100 Most Important Spiritual Books of the Twentieth Century'' by HarperCollins Publishers.

''When I despair, I remember that all through history the way of truth and love has always won. There have been tyrants and murderers and for a time they seem invincible, but in the end, they always fall -- think of it, always.'' -- Gandhi

A holy man to Hindus, a hero to Muslims, and a criminal to the British, Mohandas K. Gandhi was an inspiring
Erik Graff
Apr 17, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: everyone
Recommended to Erik by: Kelly Fox, who introduced me to India
Shelves: biography
Having read Fischer's biography of him in high school led to reading a whole lot of Gandhi's own writing in college--until, that is, hitting his commentaries on the Gita--starting with his early autobiographical My Experiments with Truth.

My primary interest in Gandhi was his pacifism and his reasons for it. The United States' invasion of the south of Vietnam had been going on since my childhood and I had become a draft counselor in college and, ultimately, a draft resister after I'd started
Elliot Ratzman
Mar 05, 2012 rated it liked it
Orwell: “Saints should always be judged guilty until they are proven innocent.” Gandhi may be a saint, but he is one fussy holy man. His autobiography only takes us to 1927, before the campaign to free India of British rule. He had become famous for leading a civil rights movement for Indians in South Africa where he lived for years before taking the “satyagraha” movement back to India. On the way, he is a young anglophile who admires the Empire, studies law in London and sides with the colonial ...more
Gorab Jain
First thing - This rating and review is not for Gandhiji and his persona, albeit the way this autobiography is written.

Its not very easy to describe conflicting thoughts and dilemmas. And yet Gandhiji has described his concepts of life in a lucid way.
"Experiments" is the highlight, and the content does justice to the title. He has captured in details the experiments on food, treatment with mud and water, way of life, thought process on indulgence and abstinence.
Also commendable are the details
Sidharth Vardhan
A ridiculously long essay about a man I think is overrated:

Gandhi is hands down one of the most overrated people in the world. It might be true for most people tagged as 'great' but the way people in India obsesses for Gandhi either considering him really great or awesome on one hand or calling him wicked on other without being willing to see any shades of grey in him is really too much.

To be honest there are two Gandhis - one is the real Gandhi and the other is the idea of him that is attached
gumireddy srikanth
Dec 17, 2009 rated it it was amazing
I owe my life to Mahatma Gandhi, This is a life-changing book. When we think of Gandhi, we think of a man who must’ve been perfect, I have learn’t about Gandhi at my school nobody discussed about this flaws , We were only taught about his extraordinary simple principles ,But in his autobiography, I learned that he had his own flaws . But his immense determination to overcome his problems , slowly and and persistently stuck me . I have learned lot of simple extra ordinary principles like Women ...more
Dr Appu Sasidharan
Dec 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favourites
Of all the books I have read so far, this one is undeniably the best.
Martin Luther King, Jr.
Albert Einstein
Aung San Suu Kyi
Barack Obama
Nelson Mandela
Dalai Lama
John Lennon
Steve Jobs
Rabindranath Tagore
Pearl S Buck
Ho Chi Minh
George Bernard Shaw
And many more great personalities cited Mahatma Gandhi as their role model. There is no need to write a review for this book because almost everyone all over the world knows that this is one of the best autobiographies ever written. If unfortunately, you
Oct 10, 2012 rated it really liked it
"My experiments with truth" describes perfectly the stoic life of Gandhiji! How he developed himself through 'good company', 'good books' and 'self-will'.
This writing is an Apotheosis for showing,"Winners are not born, they are made!"

I thought this book will be more about British East India and our Freedom struggle but its basically about "experiments" of Gandhiji in his journey and it's remarkable how he sticked to his beliefs!
Though many of his beliefs or rules I didn't find right(or orthodox,
Jijo Varghese
May 17, 2011 rated it did not like it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
May 02, 2011 rated it it was amazing

This is the first post I am writing on my blog where I want to write about the books that I have read and how they have changed my life or sometimes just given me moments of happiness in otherwise stressed life.
There cannot be a better book than “My Experiments with Truth” to start this journey. A book that helped me 20 years ago when I had read it for the first time and now again when I read it last month. The author of the book “Mahatma Gandhi” is probably one
Jul 31, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Self-revealing and fascinating to read alongside Erik Erikson's at-a-distance psychoanalysis of the saint, Gandhi's Truth (1960). The autobiography is full of surprises: At one point in his youth, Gandhi became convinced that India was behind the times because of vegetarianism, so he vowed to convert all of his homeland to carnivorious wisdom. Perhaps the only vow he did not keep.

Would that his teachings on non-violent resistance (satyagraha) were more widely applied. Detractors argue, however,
Jul 23, 2007 is currently reading it
Recommends it for: apathetic people
I should probably wait till I actually finished the book to write a review. But I feel like writting now because I've got something to say now. I tentaivley picked up this book and that is how I am making my way through the pages. I've only just begun, Gandhi is about thirteen. But I find myself angry at him. I can't get through a page without watching his struggle with a thought, idea or truth. His life, from the very early stages, reveals his struggle towards ahimsa,non-violence, and ...more
Anil Swarup
Sep 02, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Should have read this book long ago...............having read so much about the Mahatama. Absolutely remarkable and inspiring. Experiments with truth, truthfully narrated. Clearly demonstrates the power of mental and physical discipline and public confession.
Dec 30, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This book made me understand why Gandhi holds the stature he does. Gandhi writes with utmost humility and simplicity. Through this book, he takes us on his journey of experiments with truth.

"If anything that I write in these pages should strike the reader as being touched with pride, then he must take it that there is something wrong with my quest, and that my glimpses are no more than a mirage. Let hundreds like me perish, but let truth prevail. Let us not reduce the standards of truth even by
Cassandra Kay Silva
Mar 17, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: biography
The complexity of Mahatma Gandhi as a person astounds me. An autobiography gives the reader a chance to see really deeply into the ideas and suppositions that create the self. When we think of a person we often think of a character, like that in a story. Sometimes authors write characters that are consistent in their actions. These type of characters often have a certain personality type or ethical vantage point from which they view the world and their actions are constant and understandable ...more
Mike Moore
Nov 08, 2009 rated it it was amazing
I had trouble deciding whether to give this four stars or five. This book poses major problems for a contemporary western audience. It frequently alludes to another volume (Satyagraha in South Africa) which I have been unable to procure as a necessary companion volume. The final part (of five) assumes a more thorough knowledge of the birth of India as an independent nation and the events and persons that were involved in it than I possess. It becomes clear in this section that Gandhi was writing ...more
Michael Scott
May 27, 2010 rated it it was ok
Gandhi's autobiography is one of those books that you just have to read, a story of developing oneself and raising the conscience of a people. The Mahatma (Great Soul, name apparently first used in relation with Gandhi by the great Indian poet Tagore) presents with a great deal of detail his life and development of beliefs such as vegetarianism (then fruitarianism), simplicity, brahmacharya (abstinence), non-violence, and pursuit of truth; there are also slight mentions of swaraj (right of self ...more
Apr 12, 2012 rated it really liked it
This is not what I expected from a book entitled "My experiments with truth", written by Gandhi himself. A better title might perhaps be "I am really obsessed with nutrition and weirdo fad diets and enjoy privation as a means of feeling in control, including my strange aversion - but huge (did I mention huge?) huge, passion for - sex!" I was expecting lots of satyagraha, lots of moral wisdom, lots of practical info on how Gandhi implemented his sociological victories. Instead we are presented ...more
Darshana Unnikrishnan
to understand Gandhi through his own words was a wonderful experience. There is a kind of a picture that is painted into our minds during childhood by our elders of Gandhi as an ideal person. Reading this book changed my perception of Gandhiji. Now what I see is a person who has strong principles/belief systems and someone who admits to being a human with a weak side but strives to make it strong by relentless efforts.
Shalini Sinha
Before writing the review, I must mention that while reading this book, I had in my mind the impression of Mahatma Gandhi - the man who led India to independence through non-violence and still, after 70 years of his death, serves as an inspiration to freedom movements across the globe.

One of the very few books that have, to some compass, changed my life and my inner self.
A wonderful treasury of Gandhi's thoughts and beliefs - some you admire, some you accept, few you distaste yet you love and
Nov 05, 2012 rated it did not like it
Struggled through this as I found it overly obsessed with what-one-should/shouldn't-eat-when, and who gives the best advice on the matter. A way too simplistic account, considering the divine light posterity ensured to cast around this man.
What I got from Gandhi's own accounts:
1. he was in favor of never drinking milk and completely prevented his son and wife to do so despite them being in a condition of serious illness ... and yet when sickness fell upon him ...:
"I might [=could] not take
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Goodreads Librari...: Incorrect Page Number 2 23 Apr 26, 2019 04:41AM  
Goodreads Librari...: Merge editions 1 10 Nov 25, 2018 10:43AM  
Contemporary relevance of Gandhi 4 80 Aug 19, 2018 01:38PM  
Gandhi: The last revolutionary 1 8 Mar 08, 2016 01:44AM  
Well Trained Mind...: #16 - The Story of My Experiment With Truth 4 23 Nov 13, 2015 05:04PM  
Gandhi's Beginnings: Some Questions 11 212 Jun 04, 2014 10:51PM  
FULL Creative Lib...: My Experiments with Truth 1 8 Mar 05, 2014 02:45PM  

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Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi, commonly known as Mahatma Gandhi, was the preeminent leader of Indian nationalism in British-ruled India. Employing non-violent civil disobedience, Gandhi led India to independence and inspired movements for non-violence, civil rights and freedom across the world.

The son of a senior government official, Gandhi was born and raised in a Hindu Bania community in coastal
“Remember that all through history, there have been tyrants and murderers, and for a time, they seem invincible. But in the end, they always fall. Always.” 520 likes
“When every hope is gone, 'when helpers fail and comforts flee,' I find that help arrives somehow, from I know not where. Supplication, worship, prayer are no superstition; they are acts more real than the acts of eating, drinking, sitting or walking. It is no exaggeration to say that they alone are real, all else is unreal.” 276 likes
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