The twenty-first century has seen violence thunder back onto the stage of history. Religious, political, social, cultural, and economic constituents and interests thus contribute to the local and global manifestations of violence in our interconnected and contracting global world. Firmly embedded within the field of religion, the authors of this volume concede that religious motifs and impulses are alive and well in this unfolding of bloodshed. It is no wonder then that in our volatile historical age, religious fundamentalism and illiberal nationalism have emerged as dominant contemporary movements.
Against this backdrop, the contributors to this edited book look back in order to move forward by reflecting upon the truth-force (Satyagraha) that grounded and guided Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi (1869-1948).
On the heels of several commemorations in 2019 of the 150th anniversary of Gandhi's birth, we reexamine the truths of his philosophy and nonviolent strategy to resist religious and political fundamentalisms. Embracing truth was, for Gandhi, the only way to achieve complete freedom (poorna Swaraj). The goal of freedom, which Gandhi conceptualized as profoundly personal, expansively communitarian, and organically ecological, emanates from a firm grasp of truth.