December 12, 2016

Gandhi and Buber on the same page

I was startled to discover a thought of Gandhi last night that pairs very well with a poem of Martin Buber. I had to do a web search to find the poem, which I copied into an old notebook when I first read it some years ago. The idea they express seems an apt one to consider for the times.

#gandhi #quote #love by @ideapods

Our hope is too new and too old—
I do not know what would remain to us
Were love not transfigured power
And power not straying love.

Do not protest: “Let love alone rule!”
Can you prove it true?
But resolve: Every morning
I shall concern myself anew about he boundary
Between the love-deed-Yes and the power-deed-No
And pressing forward honor reality.

We cannot avoid
using power,
Cannot escape the compulsion
To afflict the world,
So let us, cautious in diction
And might in contradiction,
Love powerfully.

Martin Buber/Power and Love (1926)