Gandhi Mandela And Aung San Suu Kyi Analysis

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The lives of Gandhi, Mandela and Aung San Suu Kyi(ASSK), are ones we deem as having been extraordinary. However, there are many potential determinants that illustrate this perception. The interesting aspect for this essay is how they managed to overcome the repressive existing order and bring about change. The three individuals in this study have similar objectives, however took slightly different routes in achieving their goals. The focus is on their methods of resistance and their attitudes towards violence. Gandhi had always denounced the use of violence, whereas Mandela argued that there was no alternative to an armed struggle. ASSK’s concept lies in the middle as she indicated both the philosophical and tactical significance of violence. …show more content…
This was a principle that was instilled in him since birth and through Jainism. Gandhi even made certain choices based on his stance on violence, such as; refraining from evil thoughts, dishonesty, hatred and eating meat(P357,Gandhi), because they were contradictory to Ahimsa. Through the principle of Ahimsa Gandhi came to understand the importance of absorbing suffering. Gandhi had many influences and Christianity was one of them. This idea of sacrifice was one that appealed to him greatly in later life as he compared his own suffering to that of Jesus’s. This is potentially how he came to understand the significance of suffering and how by making the opponent’s violence visible would make the real injustice apparent. This is essentially an example of Gandhi using nonviolence as a political tool and could suggest why he never saw violence as an effective catalyst for change. This is unlike Mandela who we know indicated the significance of violence in bringing about a desired act. Gandhi would dismiss this and place greater prominence on the symbolism of civil disobedience and forgiveness. “Nonviolence is infinitely superior to violence; forgiveness is manlier than punishment. Forgiveness adorns a soldier..”(Finkelstein,2012,p36). This seems similar to ASSK who advocated the significance of non-violence and forgiveness when appealing to the human nature of one’s opponents. Gandhi reinforces this with his idea that “turning the other cheek”(p77) would force one’s opponent to respect you for your courage and self-control. These ideals were formulated into a conception known as Satyagraha, which has a focus on ‘being an agent of

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