Essay on Sarvodaya and Marxism

This brings up to the second point of difference between these social gospels. Marxism concentrates its attention on class and has but little regard for the individual. Sarvodaya builds from the individual.

Sarvodaya is a pathway for individuals to work out their salvation through a regulated life of self-fulfillment and self-sacrifice.

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This difference of approach between Marxism and Sarvodaya leads naturally to a further characteristic difference between them in political arrangements. Marxism has been irrevocably committed to centralization or nationalization of all economic activities.

It is tied up with this policy because of its central doctrine of class war and class oppression by the owners of property who run the State in their own interest. Hence the only way of removing the rule of property owners was through the expropriation of property owners and nationalization of all capital.

There is no aspect of life over which the Marxist State does not seek to exercise control. It introduces slavery in body, mind and soul, and enforces it by a terror and indoctrination odious in the extreme.

Sarvodaya has a horror of such a culmination. It, therefore, insists on decentralization of State power as well as economic power. This is the secret of Gandhiji’s stress on village economy.

Even with regard to the fundamental value of freedom, Sarvodaya is a safer guide, for Marxism ends up with the dismissal of personal freedom as a ‘bourgeois prejudice’ while Sarvodaya insists on freedom first and last as the oxygen of human life.

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