“Do what your conscience tells you and your strength permits you to do. What others may advise is not one’s dharma. Dharma is what a man himself believes to be such. How can another man know our heart? You should, therefore, pray to God to help you recognise your path. He is the only true guide.”
This, on August 10, 1935, Gandhi wrote to Bhujangigal Chhaya in a letter which, along with another, was auctioned last week.
The text is very significant and in line with the ethical principles of Hinduism and, in particular, with the message of the Bhagavad Gita, text beloved by Gandhi.
This is the concept of svadharma or individual, personal dharma. In Hinduism there is not a morality which applies to everyone, but a morality which applies to a particular person, at that particular time and social context. This does not mean ethical relativism nor means that everyone chooses the moral he likes most, it means the need for everyone to know himself in order to identify his own dharma. It is a fundamental and personal commitment - as Mahatma wrote in that letter Mahatma - no one can help us but God.
The text of the letters is in Gujarati language, the language of Gandhi, one of those is a handwritten and one typed and signed by the Mahatma and which have been sold respectively to 1,500,000 rupees (about € 18,000 ) and 900,000 rupees ( approximately 11,000 Euros ).