09 February 2007

gandhiji on sanitation

"When there is both inner and outer cleanliness, it becomes next to godliness."
- Jan 8, 1948

"He who is truly clean within, cannot remain unclean without."

"Cleanliness is next to godliness. We can no more gain God's blessings
with an unclean body than with and unclean mind. A clean body cannot
reside in an unclean city."
- Nov 19, 1925

"Everyone must be his own scavenger. Evacuation is as necessary as
eating; and the best thing would be for every one to dispose of his
own waste. If this is impossible, each family should see to its own

"Man becomes what he eats. Your water and food and air must be clean
and you will not be satisfied with mere personal cleanliness, but you
will infect your surroundings with the same cleanliness that you will
desire for yourselves."

"Corporate cleanliness can only be ensured if there is a corporate
conscience and a corporate insistence on cleanliness in public

"Poverty is no bar to perfect sanitation."


please note my feat itch im covered in mosquito bites i work in the
venice of open sewers and am compulsively cutting my nails. among a
million other projects that happen majestically and mysteriously i
will be feeding and bathing 100 meters of roadside slum children. its
on monday if you want to come and they are lovely human beings and
mothers not at all spiteful that they once were farmers and now beg on
the street because the city appropriated their land to build a (large)
road and some apartment buildings.

whatever. the whole area is a swampy sewer now, fifteen years later,
anyhow. i would advise those friends and lovers who happen to read
this to imagine the last farm you've worked on or visited. now imagine
that land converted into a filthy human sewer.


also walking around with jayeshbhai. one of many strange majesties is
the way he walks around and asks for people's cigarrettes and chewing
tobacco whenever he sees it. first they're like "what the fuck" and
then he explains somehow from the heart that smoking is bad and he's
their brother and concerned about their help and everyone (but i mean
everyone, of all castes and cleanlinesses) ends up giving him their
chew or snuff or bidis or whatever, that he breaks up and throws on
the ground...


its super weird and amazing. and everytime (this happens every 20
meters or so, we walked 7 km through the city this morning) i ask in
admiring consternation "but why do they give it to you?" and he laughs
innocently, honestly, "I dont know!" and then, "I ask them from the
heart." and then, "I dont know!"

and here I am picking up fallen chew packets for the old women. ah disneyland.

1 comment:

MrA said...

Ah, cleanliness.. . As a housekeeping nazi I know a shining, sparkling, translucent tiled hospital cornered bed paradise as the highest of human achievements.