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Walking Water in California…
… with Dr. Rajendra Singh ‘The Waterman’

On the recent 2016-2017 Gandhi Legacy Tour of India , led by Arun and Tushar Gandhi, we visited Tarun Bharat Sangh Campus to meet Dr. Rajendra Singh and take field tours of a few water bodies Dr. Singh has “resurrected.”  After two amazing days with Dr. Singh and his community, he informed our group about the upcoming Phase 3 of Walking Water in southern California slated for October 14-28, 2017. “More than a Water Walk, it is a movement!”, Singh has exclaimed.  

WALKING WATER is an invitation, an action, an educational journey and a prayer intended to bring together the voices of the many Peoples of the Eastern Sierra and Los Angeles watersheds through the act of walking together, following the waterways — natural and manmade — between Mono Lake and Los Angeles. This video weaves together the stories of how Walking Water came to be and the vision behind the upcoming pilgrimage.”  “Walking Water is about water, people and place – restoring those relations using the most basic of forms – Pilgrimage.” 

From Kate, Gigi and Alan
Core Team Walking Water

Walking Water is a “fervent prayer and pioneering social action” that began 2015 September in eastern California, continued in 2016, and will conclude this year. The “water” the participants are calling attention to is now mostly a memory, for the rivers and creeks of this Eastern Sierra valley were conscripted in the early twentieth century to supply drinking, bathing, and golf-course-greening water for the growing population of Los Angeles. The “walking” part of the name is a pilgrimage that traces the path of those waters.

“Walking Water is not a demonstration, it is not a march against something, instead it is a celebration of the possibilities we have when we come together. Walking Water aims to share stories about water among walkers and those they meet, unite diverse communities around a common concern, and begin exploring ways in which citizens can take a more active role in what happens to their land, water, and air.”

In 2015, we walked water from Mono Lake, near Yosemite National Park, to Owens Lake (180 miles in 22 days)

In 2016, in September and October we trekked water from Owens Lake to the Cascades aqueduct in Sylmar, CA. 

This year in October, Walking Water will complete the journey, from The Sylmar Cascades to Los Angeles.  

To emphasize the inclusiveness of the pilgrimage, organizers have reached out to ranchers, farmers, Native Americans, park administrators, and others, not only asking permission to walk through and camp on their land, but extending invitations for them to join the pilgrimage. Participants may join the walk for an hour or for the duration.

We are walking the path from source to end-user and we enter Los Angeles with stories gathered over the last 2 years – stories of community and tribal resilience as well as severe drought and land appropriation. As we enter a new political time in the USA we are asked to step up in our awareness and action, in our work , our prayer and our dedication with water, the lands and all its peoples. We look forward to walking with you all this year.

We thank you all for your support in any form. May this year be one of solidarity, strengthening of communities and the love and care for water.

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Happy Birthday, Grandfather!

 Original Post Source by Arun Gandhi:  Gandhi Day Message

 Bapu and Kasturba

Artist Gary Manson from Gatlinburg, Tennessee

 

Gandhi Day Message

Gandhi was born October 2, 1869 

One hundred and forty-five years ago Mohandas K. Gandhi was born in an innocuous town in Western India and no one imagined he would become an Apostle of peace, love and humanity.  He was killed 66 years ago leaving the world a legacy of goodness, compassion and the way to achieve true civilization. 

Instead the world decided to go in the opposite direction, the direction of materialism and militarism, both antithetical to the concept of civilization.  The result is in 1914 the world was embroiled in the first World War which devastated scores of millions of lives.  Now, coincidentally, in 2014 we are tottering on the brink of World War III? 

Materialism and militarism, the twin evils, have led humanity to a life of crime, violence and wars causing the deaths of more than 300 million people in one century.  Yet, we refuse to learn anything from the dehumanizing and devastating way of life and behave as though we are trapped in a downward spiral and can do nothing about it

After a lecture on Nonviolence In The 21st Century a 17 year old high school student asked me: What do you think your grandfather would have done if he was alive today?  It is a difficult question to speculate on  but I do know grandfather had an immense store of compassion and confidence in the goodness of human beings.  If he was alive today he would have started all over again working to change humanity.  He firmly believed that a society will change only when people change.  Which is why he repeatedly reminded us: WE MUST BECOME THE CHANGE WE WISH TO SEE IN THE WORLD! 

The philosophy of nonviolence that he left as a legacy is not, I repeat NOT, simply a peaceful way of resolving conflicts.  If understood in depth, it is a means of personal transformation.  So, to paraphrase President John F. Kennedy:  Ask not what the world can do for you, ask what you can do for your world!   

 

 

First Satyagraha Tour of South Africa
Led by Arun Gandhi, Embarks This Week

News Announcement Originally Posted at Gandhi Legacy Tour

(PRLEAP.COM) Dana Point, CA May 25, 2014: The inaugural Satyagraha Tour of South Africa enjoys organic synchronicity of critical historical dates of both Mohandas Gandhi and Nelson Mandela.  Highlights include following the path of Gandhi’s travels, initially arriving in Durban, and ultimately departing from Cape Town for his return to India to begin the next phase of his legacy:

Gandhi first arrived in South Africa as a fledgling lawyer in May 1893.

Our arrival to Gandhi’s first ashram, the Phoenix Settlement, occurs on the 97th anniversary of Gandhi’s family move there.

We will board the sleeper train on the 121st anniversary of Gandhi’s removal from that train, which changed the course of history.

We visit Robben Island, the prison that held Mandela for 18 years, on the 50th anniversary of Mandela’s life sentence for sabotage against the Apartheid government of South Africa.

We depart Cape Town on the eve of Gandhi’s 100th anniversary of his very own departure from Cape Town back to India.

Also scheduled are special meetings with historic figures that played a significant role in the fight for freedom during Apartheid, like Ahmed Kathrada and Ela Gandhi, Gandhi’s granddaughter who spent years under house arrest for her South African activism.

There’s something in all of us that hungers after the good and true, and when we glimpse it in people, we applaud them for it. Through them we let the world’s pain into our hearts, and we find compassion. When things go wrong or have been terribly wrong for some time, their inspiration reminds us of the tenderness for life that we can all feel.”   Archbishop Desmond Tutu

As a part of the first Satyagraha Legacy Tour of South Africa, there are several projects we visit that are aligned to Gandhi’s principals and are geared toward giving back, including: Read more

Happy Jayanti Bapu!

Original Post Source: Gandhi Legacy Tour Blog 

Today, October 2nd, is Gandhi’s Birthday…

To all my personal friends and friends of my late grandfather Mohandas ‘Mahatma’ Gandhi I send warm regards and best wishes from my home in Rochester, New York.  I have been encouraged by many to continue writing an annual message on the day of Grandfather’s birthday, October 2nd (1869 – 1948). This date is now know as the United Nations International Day of Nonviolence which was designated by the U.N. to acknowledge Mohandas ‘Mahatma’ Gandhi each year. 

I continue to write this annual message and I now share this with you and those who hold dear the wisdom, and benefit from the philosophy and message of Mahatma Gandhi.

[Editor’s note: The Gandhi Legacy Tour 2013-14 led by Arun Gandhi still has only a few remaining openings that will be available for a very short time – less than 14 days from this publication.  Don’t miss out!]

Celebrating Gandhi Birthday

Bapu, we still love you!

On a previous Gandhi birthday I received a letter from an Indian friend who lived for many years in Britain and San Diego and recently decided to go back to India to take back home the Gandhi legacy “Become the change you wish to see in the world.” Like millions before him he is disillusioned. He has not been able to find Gandhi in the new India. Of course, Gandhi’s image adorns all the currency notes, there are statues in town squares and every city and town has a “Mahatma Gandhi Road.” Lip service is paid to Gandhiji’s memory on his birthday and his death anniversary.

>> Continue reading at Arun Gandhi’s blog

 

Ahmedabad Day 1 – A Gandhi Traveler’s Journal

[Editor’s note: Stephanie Brown was a participant of this year’s tour, which I helped to organize. She has been journaling at her ShutterFly photo blog where she has posted many more images that she and her father Jerry took]

The Gandhi Legacy tour is a J-term course option at Salisbury University in Maryland.  One of our tour members, Anthony, attended as a SU graduate student last year and came back this year to bring his fiancé, Katie.  Half seriously they started talking about getting married at the Sabarmati Ashram.  Arun caught wind of it and started making the preparations including re-writing the vows that his Grandfather once used to be relevant to the times.  Anthony and Katie picked out wedding clothes during a market excursion in Kolhapur and the wedding was planned to take place shortly after we arrived at the ashram.  It was a beautiful, simple ceremony.

Aerial view of Ahmedabad on Sabarmati River

Ahmedabad Day 1

Our first train experience was an overnight ride from Mumbai to Ahmedabad.  I thought this might be a good opportunity to get caught up with journaling and photo edits but since we did not board until after 10pm it was lights out after we settled in.  I slept remarkably well in my very hard upper berth and was pretty well rested when we arrived just before 7am.  Read more

Arun Gandhi to provide Keynote for Brazilian Education Conference

Mahatma Gandhi Grandson to provide Keynote Address at Brazilian Education Conference

Arun Gandhi to speak at Salvador Bahia Annual Forum: Education in the First Place 

Arun Gandhi Peace Speaker in Brazil

Dr. Arun Gandhi

Dr. Arun Gandhi, noted peace and human rights activist and president of the Gandhi Worldwide Education Institute (‘GWEI’) has accepted an invitation to provide keynote address from the Brazilian City of Salvador Bahia (Salvador da Bahia) at the City’s annual Education in the First Place Forum, it was announced today by Emilia Queiroga Barros its Executive Director.  Dr. Gandhi’s keynote opening entitled: ‘Education, a Legacy of Love will be given on June 26, 2012 at the Teatro Castro Alves complex.

Arun Gandhi, the fifth grandson of Indian leader Mohandas K. Gandhi, aka Mahatma Gandhi, is an advocate for nonviolence and has been a Washington Post columnist, has worked for 30 years as a journalist for The Times of India, and is the author of several books, including “A Patch of White” (1949) and Legacy of Love (2002). In 2011 Dr. Gandhi provided the keynote address to a gathering of 30,000 attendees at Dali Lama’s birthday event in Washington DC.

Read more

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