In all, it boils down to the fact that there should be men with an open understanding of the religious faith of the other men and which seems to mean an indispensable condition of the possibility of the ?open society? of tomorrow.
Chapter 2 begins with clarifications about relativism and relativity. Plurality, whether in religion or in other contexts, calls neither for aggregation nor for reluctant toleration, but for an understanding of the other'ssituation. The Hindu society, while not defining itself in relation to ?the other?, is itself diverse. Sometimes it has shown resilience in assimilating new elements and at other times, closed its ranks in reaction to alien inroads. The influence of Jainism on Gandhiji'sstress on the fragmentariness of human perceptions of Truth provided him with the rationale of democracy and he accommodated this under a vision of nationalism which went along with a preference for a minimalist state and an outreach beyond national boundaries.
Discussing specifically the theme of religion, the author identifies three points of communication with reference to Gandhiji, who exercised great skill and legal experience to probe the data on communal conflict and uncover what was at the heart of any particular conflict. The second was Gandhiji'ssympathy with those whose moral integrity was evident but who did not regard themselves as religious. Thirdly, Gandhiji, on his trips abroad, spoke about what he called ?the prophetic mode and challenge in religion, politics and society?. He was not talking about prediction but made a sharp distinction between the utopian and the prophetic. Gandhiji'sexperiment with Truth were powerful vehicles of communication and among them, all, the innovative praxis of satyagraha showed how suffering injustice could pool in non-violent strength and resist authority whenever it was being abused.
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