How did Hinduism influence Gandhi's actions?

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mkoren | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Senior Educator

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Hinduism influenced Gandhi's actions in many ways.  Even though he was raised as a Hindu, he didn't read the Bhagavad Gita until he was a little older.  He studied many religions and combined some of the beliefs of other religions with Hindu beliefs when he returned to India.  One important Hindu belief is the concept of the sacredness of life and the need to practice non-violence.  This is why Gandhi's protests were non-violent in nature.  Hinduism believes all religions have value.  This taught Gandhi the concept of tolerance.  This was important since Hindus and Muslims lived together in India.  Hindu beliefs also include striving to know the Divine power.  This explains Gandhi's  spirituality and religious practice.  Additionally, Hinduism encourages a lot of self reflection, discipline, and purification.  Gandhi often fasted to achieve this goal.  Hinduism had a significant impact on Gandhi's life and actions.