15 Jawaharlal Nehru Quotes On Life, Socialism, Peace, And Democracy


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Jawaharlal Nehru, a visionary statesman and the first Prime Minister of independent India left a lasting imprint on the nation’s history with his wisdom and leadership. His legacy, conveyed through his powerful words, remains a timeless source of inspiration. In the collection of Jawaharlal Nehru quotes, we discover not only life wisdom but also profound insights into the principles of democracy, secularism, and nation-building. Come with us on a journey through time, where Jawaharlal Nehru quotes provide glimpses into the essence of a leader who played a pivotal role in shaping the fate of a nation.

  1. “The forces in a capitalist society, if left unchecked, tend to make the rich richer and the poor poorer.”

Meaning: Nehru is arguing that the forces of capitalism if left unchecked, will lead to a widening gap between the rich and the poor. This is because capitalism is a system that is driven by profit, and businesses will naturally try to maximize their profits by paying workers as little as possible and charging consumers as much as possible.

  1. “Life is like a game of cards. The hand you are dealt is determinism; the way you play it is free will.”

Meaning: While we may not have control over the circumstances we are born into, we have the power to choose how we respond to them.

  1. “The art of a people is a true mirror to their minds.”

Meaning: A culture’s art reflects the values, beliefs, and perspectives of its people. It is a reflection of their inner world, their hopes and dreams, and their fears and anxieties.

  1. “Socialism is… not only a way of life, but a certain scientific approach to social and economic problems.”

Meaning: Socialism is not just a set of economic policies but also a way of understanding and organizing society.

  1. “Citizenship consists in the service of the country.”

Meaning: Nehru believed that citizenship was more than just having rights and privileges. It also came with responsibilities for the country and its people.

  1. “I have become a queer mixture of the East and the West, out of place everywhere, at home nowhere.”

Meaning: In his quote, Jawaharlal Nehru reflects on his own identity as a product of both Eastern and Western cultures. He was born and raised in India, but he also received his education in England. As a result, he felt that he belonged to neither culture completely.

  1. “It is the habit of every aggressor nation to claim that it is acting on the defensive.”

Meaning: Aggressor nations often justify their actions by claiming that they are necessary to defend themselves against a threat, even when there is no such threat. This Jawaharlal Nehru quote is still relevant today.

  1. “The only alternative to coexistence is co-destruction.”

Meaning: If we cannot live together in peace, we will all be destroyed. This is a powerful reminder of the importance of cooperation and understanding, especially in a world with nuclear weapons.

  1. “You don’t change the course of history by turning the faces of portraits to the wall.”

Meaning: Ignoring or denying the past will not change it or its consequences. It is a reminder that we must learn from the past, both good and bad, in order to build a better future.

  1. “The man who has gotten everything he wants is all in favor of peace and order.”

Meaning: People who have achieved everything they want in life are more likely to support peace and order because they have a vested interest in maintaining the status quo. They have something to lose if there is chaos or disorder.

  1. “Democracy and socialism are means to an end, not the end itself.”

Meaning: Jawaharlal Nehru believed that democracy and socialism were not ends in themselves but rather tools for achieving a better society.

  1. “Great causes and little men go ill together.”

Meaning: People who are not capable of greatness are not suited to lead or support great causes.

  1. “Evil unchecked grows, evil tolerated poisons the whole system.”

Meaning: Evil that is not stopped or confronted will continue to grow stronger, and if it is tolerated, it will eventually infect and destroy the entire system.

  1. “A leader or a man of action in a crisis almost always acts subconsciously and then thinks of the reasons for his action.”

Meaning: Leaders in a crisis often act instinctively without having time to consciously think through all of the pros and cons of their actions. This is because in a crisis, time is of the essence, and leaders need to make quick decisions.

  1. “The person who runs away exposes himself to that very danger more than a person who sits quietly.”

Meaning: One interpretation is that running away from danger does not actually make you safe. Another interpretation of the quote is that running away from danger can be a sign of cowardice.

In conclusion, Jawaharlal Nehru quotes provide profound insights into society, politics, and life. He cautions against the pitfalls of unchecked capitalism and emphasizes the significance of individual actions in life. Moreover, he underscores the importance of a nation’s art mirroring the thoughts of its people. Nehru ardently advocated for socialism and urged citizens to dedicate themselves to serving their country. His concepts of fostering cultural diversity and promoting peaceful coexistence continue to resonate in today’s world. Furthermore, his wisdom regarding leadership, democracy, and socialism as instruments for a more just society remains invaluable in navigating our intricate contemporary world.

Sushmita Nibandhe

ALSO READ: 15 Lal Bahadur Shastri Quotes To Inculcate Leadership Values



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