Date: 24 August 2018


Time uploaded in London – 17-33 (British Summer Time)


Post No. 5358


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I have been asked by Sri S Radhakrishnan (later President of India) to answer the following three questions:

What is your religion?

How are you led to it?

What is its bearing on social life?

my religion is Hinduism which, for me, is Religion of humanity and includes the best of all the religions known to me.


I take it that the present tense in the second question has been purposely used instead of the past.. I am being let to my religion through Truth and Non Violence, i.e. love in the broadest sense. I often describe my religion as Religion of Truth. Of late, instead of saying God is Truth, I have been saying Truth is God, in order more fully to define my religion. I used, at one time , to know by heart the thousand names of God which a booklet in Hinduism gives in verse form and which perhaps tens of thousands of Hindus recite every morning. But nowadays nothing so completely describes my God as truth. Denial of God we have known . Denial of Truth we have not known. The most ignorant among mankind have some truth in them. We are all sparks of Truth. The sum total of these sparks is indescribable, as yet unknown Truth, which is God. I am being daily led nearer to it by constant prayer.

The bearing of this religion on social life is, or has to be, seen in one’s daily social contact. To be true to such religion one has to lose oneself in continuous and continuing service of all life. Realization of Truth is impossible without a complete merging of oneself in, and identification with, this limitless ocean of life. Hence, for me, there is no escape from social service, there is no happiness on earth beyond or apart from it. Social service here must be taken to include every department of life. In this scheme there is nothing high. For, all is one, though we seem to be many.


–M K Gandhi

Source book:-

Contemporary Indian Philosophy, Edited by S Radhakrishnan and J H Muirhead, 1936 (second revised edition 1952)

(My father V santanam bought this book on 3-9-1956 for 26 rupees 4 Annas and numbered the book as 580. Probably his book collection number. It was bought from Bharathi Puthaka Nilayam in Madurai. I see his underlining of important points  throughout the book. Total number of pages 650.  I used to go to Bharathi Puthaka Niayam with my father and the owner’s name was also Swaminathan; so I got a chocolate every time I went there!—London swaminathan)



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