Wednesday, November 30, 2011

What Would Gandhi Occupy?

GANDHI has been all over New York lately. First he appeared at Occupy Wall Street as a patron saint of sorts, inspiring the protest’s nonviolent tactics. (The demonstrators even named a lane for him.) Then he emerged at the Metropolitan Opera as the star of Philip Glass’s opera “Satyagraha.”

But with the Zuccotti Park encampment removed, and the opera closing on Dec. 1, is that it for Gandhi in New York? Or is it worth asking, what would Gandhi do in the world today?

First, Gandhi would reject the division between the 99 percent and the 1 percent. Gandhi did not believe in enemies: he worked on the premise that solutions emerged only from cooperation. This truth is often lost in discussions of his political tactics of noncooperation and civil disobedience. Noncooperation is best understood as an invitation to cooperate. “We are the 100 percent” may not make for a dramatic slogan, but from Gandhi’s perspective, it is the only way to achieve true and lasting change in society....

Continue reading at NYTimes here.

Also read, Occupy Buddha: Reflections on Occupy Wall Street

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