Gandhi In Search Of A True Environmentalist


“You must be the change you wish to see in the world” Gandhi


Gandhi The greatest environmentalist of modern times


The 1970’s was the most politically active decade. Gandhi in search of a true environmentalist is the third post discussing the greatest environmentalists historically, the very first post in the series happened 2500 years ago as Prince Siddhartha desperately searched for life’s meaning and happiness while meditating he rediscovered the Dharma’s (teachings) and perceived the truth and reality of all things, finally transformed to the enlightened one. Buddha escaping the eternal suffering of Samsara. The Buddha finally decided to share The Dharma give teaching on the Four Noble Truths.

2500 years later in the 1970s, a few people discovered that the environment was under heavy pressure and modern environmentalism rooted wisdom from Buddhism such as E.F Schumacher book Small is beautiful, economics as people mattered and environmental philosopher Arne Næss developed the Ecosophy or deep ecology movement continuously inspired by Buddhism and a Gandhian view. Mostly the established society during the politically active 1970s criticised and stamped environmentalists with terms such as leftism, lazy radicals and unemployed intellectuals. Nevertheless, without the environmentalist from the 1970s, there would not be any movements such as Greenpeace or Earth Day. Today it has become a trend being concerned about it.

The third post in the series The greatest environmentalists is dedicated a small, nevertheless, great man Gandhi was able to free India from the British Empire without the use of violence. Gandhi with his Charkha Spinning wheel became the symbol of peaceful resistance. Gandhi used the Charkha Spinning wheel as a symbolic action Indians aware and boycott the British textile Industry. Gandhi non-violence philosophy conquered The British Empire control of a vast continent with different languages, Kings and Queens. The fashion Industry has many creative heads that should be able to challenge consumer demand for Eco-Fashion, better quality garments and give the labour forces a decent salary. Sustainable fashion design challenge designers, fabric-engineers, manufactures with less polluting technology, less water demanding fibres and reduce the use of pesticides.

A radical change of design ethics is needed. My journey towards a sustainable design process started in the 1990s working as a trend specialist for the denim jeans brand Levi Strauss Co. Our research studies fast understood the new of another approach towards design in the future. Reduce environmental damage, reduce the use of chemicals and water footprint. We made even a brand with a line of jeans made of industrial hemp called Levi RED

Gandhi’s concern about the environment

  • Open air
    • Open air is vital for life and precious because we cannot stay long alive without it, he was concerned about the factory workers and their working environment. Air, water, and grains are the three chief kinds of food. Air is free to all, but, if it is polluted, it harms our health.
  • Water
    • Air first, then if the water gets polluted and he was thinking of the mighty Ganges river. Then the pilgrims who stay in the water it can turn out in massive diseases and will harm The Dharma. Of compassion and disregard their duty to the society this we destroy the dharma. compassion and disregard our duty to society.
  • Return to nature
    • Return to nature means to live in nature become of the importance, to live outside and in harmony with nature can bring healing of the polluted mind as well makes you cure for diseases from bad air and water conditions. To make the poor move out of the big cities to experience the health from living in good air, water and with enough food. Earth, water, air are the cure for all nation and religion

To make the poor move out of the big cities to experience the health from living in good air, water and with enough food. Earth, water, air are the cure for all nationalities and religions. Gandhi followed, understood and practices his wisdom. The series of the world’s greatest environmentalist one cannot bypass Gandhi mostly known as a pacifist and his non-violence philosophy, direct actions and political boycotts His great value were to strictly follow the old Hindu set of values stated in the Vedas. Moreover, he did not only read them, he understood and most of all did the practices. Hinduism and Indian classical languages such as Sanskrit and Theravada Buddhism Pali language oldest religious text known to man. The text dated more than 8000 years old, one of the stories, for example, highlights the need to take care of nature: “keeping the forest and the trees protected”

The Buddha practically learning by doing experienced that being extreme in one or another direction (rich or poor) would not bring happiness nor inner peace. Only when desire was released happiness could become reality. Being poor only lead to desire material wealth and being rich only lead to a struggle to protect the values. Therefore, Buddha view on the Middle Way that happiness only achieved when the release of desire and balance between material goods and spiritual values is established. Gandhi understood that if a world shared the common resources it will be enough for everyone, however, not if the greed of the few continued, then people would starve. He realized if the Industrial Revolution he saw at London came India would collapse. Gandhi foresaw with great insight, practice and speeches “if India became as techno-savvy as Britain there would not be enough natural resources for everyone”.


Gandhi view on the consumerism

Gandhi saw how fast fortune made people even greedily. He understood early on that if the things he saw in London with the industrial revolution would make technology become a tool to make fortunes fast and this greed would punish the workers to work longer, companies to steal from global resources and that the important spiritual part of life would be suffering. The world is not in balance. His view upon the over-consumerism Gandhi experienced while the studies of law in London made him probably qualified as a true “culture jammer”.

He said in a letter that was sent from London about a future where the biggest problem was where to store all the waste. Try to imagine Gandhi attending a modern fashion show making applause for every new outfit on the catwalk, the little man with an iconic round glasses would not be an angry man, he did already know it was un-escapable. Gandhi would cherish the creativity. Gandhi in his boycott of the British textile industry wore, designed and made his own simple outfit. Gandhi wore simple clothes that conveyed his message into actions. Gandhi realized if all Indians made simple clothes instead of buying from the British textile industry the losses and damage would be unbearable.

Gandhi celebrated and often quoted statements about greed: “Earth has enough to satisfy the need of all the people, but not for satisfying the greed of some”. A statement astonishingly relevant now. Gandhi clearly distinguished between humans desire wants and the reality of needs. Furthermore, he emphasised the needs of future generations so the present generation sustained the natural resources carefully and with respect. Kamala Chowdhary has found the reflection of Gandhi’s ideas related to the sustainable development of Agenda 21. Fashioned by the largest number of nations globally Earth Summit Rio de Janeiro 1992 led by former Norwegian prime minister Gro Brundtland the Gandhian ideas a reality.

Megatrends 2000–2005 Levi Strauss Europe Middle East & Africa

In 2000, Trend Specialist, Levi Strauss Europe, Middle East & Africa we presented the following conclusion meeting with the European Country Managers; corporations exploitation of global resources will soon meet resistance on a global scale, and force if responsible our company to make necessary actions within fashion design towards a sustainable design and greater social responsibility. Sustainable product design contradictions, how can fashion be sustainable when fashion means fast? Inspired by work and design by Stuart Walker who in the end of the 1990’s released “Fashion and sustainability often assumed to be in opposition, does it attract? Stuart Walker The Spirit of Design: Objects, Environment and Meaning.

Gandhi was a dandy seen around the in-places in London. Gandhi understood both Western and Eastern culture, socialized in the Indian cultural tradition and was one of the few who had the knowledge and the advantage of knowing both cultures, Gandhi was a dandy young man when study law in and frequented places where the London crowd often were seen. For a time he was also the leader of The London Vegetarian Society.

Gandhi saw both worlds have its ups and downs just exactly the same message Dalai Lama lectured in the 1998 Nobel peace prize speech. Dalai Lama talked about inner peace and that, it can only be achieved by balance lifestyle. Gandhi understood clearly that technology would not bring happiness to India alone. Technology is not a solution to a good life. Gandhi experienced in London how badly infected the sewage was damaging, keep the water clean does not only keep away deadly viruses, bacteria etc. however, as well also made the surroundings clean. In the Ashram, everyone should cleanse his own toilet. Gandhi also emphasized non-violence in other fields such as nature. All native people have the equal view upon nature from the oldest Aboriginal culture, Indians of North America and Mayas of central Latin America share the same view, for example, land cannot be owned it belongs to nature.



  • 1869-Born on 2 October in Porbandar, Gujarat, India
  • 1883-Gandhi married Kasturba Makhanji after his parents arranged the marriage.
  • 1888-Went to University College London to train as a barrister and his first child Harilal Gandhi was born.
  • 1892-His wife gave birth to Manilal Gandhi, his second child.
  • 1894-He founded the Natal Indian Congress with him as the secretary
  • .1897-His son Ramdas Gandhi was born. 1900-Their fourth child was born and named Devdas Gandhi.
  • 1915-Gandhi founded an ashram on the outskirt Satyagraha Ashram.
  • 1916-He supported the British Power during World War I.
  • 1921-Gandhi invested with executive authority on behalf of the Indian National Congress in December.
  • 1939-Nazi Germany invaded Poland and Gandhi had favoured offering non-violent moral support to the British effort.
  • 1948-30 January assassinated in Birla House, New Delhi

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Kenneth Lyngaas
Sustainable fashion designer & eco-philosopher Sustainable fashion dedicated the twenty-first-century green living, design for change through system thinking, eco philosophy, spirituality, and sustainability.
Kenneth Lyngaas
Kenneth Lyngaas
Kenneth Lyngaas
sustainableFASHION// dedicated the twenty-first century sustainable community and living. Every day, I deliver selected news on Eco design across the Internet. Most people appreciate an update without searching latest news themselves. Therefore, it’s already served. Don’t miss it, subscribe! http://paper.li/buddhajeans/1322177882
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