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Discuss in detail Gandhiji’s philosophy of Means and Ends.

Topic : Human Values – lessons from the lives and teachings of great leaders, reformers and administrators; role of Family society and educational institutions in inculcating values.

6. Discuss in detail Gandhiji’s philosophy of Means and Ends. (250 words)

Reference Ethics, Integrity and Aptitude by Lexicon Publications

Why the question:

The question is straightforward and is based on the principle of means and ends of Gandhiji.

Key Demand of the question:

Discuss in detail Gandhiji’s philosophy of Means and Ends.


Discuss – This is an all-encompassing directive – you have to debate on paper by going through the details of the issues concerned by examining each one of them. You have to give reasons for both for and against arguments.

Structure of the answer:


Briefly define Means and Ends; in simple terms, ends are the goals or results. Means are the methods used to achieve goals.

There are differing schools of thought with some justifying any means for achieving the goals while others uphold the need for right means to achieve the objectives in true sense.


Explain Gandhian perspective on the relative importance of Means and Ends. For Gandhiji, there is some inviolable connection between means and ends similar to the one

Between a seed and a tree. Gandhiji stated that it is means, rather than ends, that provide the standard of morality. As per him, the only thing that is completely within control is the means to achieve the goal.

For Gandhiji, violence and non-violence cannot be different means to serve the same end, since they are morally different in quality and essence, they must necessarily achieve different results.

Quote relevant examples to substantiate your answer.


Conclude with importance of the philosophy and in what way it holds true even in today’s times.