Page:MKGandhi patriot.djvu/37

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CHAPTER V

HIS PARENTS

When Mr. Gandhi speaks o[ his parents, those who listen realise that they are on holy ground. It is as though some priestly Israelite had lifted the curtain of the inner Shrine, to allow the Shekinah to be seen. There, in there, are the springs of Divine power and life.

"Tell me about them," I said to him, as he sat opposite me, in one of his reflecting moods. "Tell me about your parents." And this, in substance, was his reply.

There are four castes among the Hindus, each one divided and subdivided into many more:—

(1) The Brahmin, or Priestly Caste.
(2) The Kshatriya, or Warrior Caste.
(3) The Vaishya, or CommerciaI Caste.
(4) The Sudra, or Domestic Caste.

The Gandhi clan belong to the third caste. In religion they are Vaishnavas. The father was an intensely religious man. He knew the whole of the Bhagavad Gita, Arnold's "Song Celestial,"