I TURNED NINETY ON MAY 10, 2016

I do not believe in celebrating birthday. On most of my birthdays we have got together with the residents of the city and discussed the questions about health, social problems, etc. Only two or three of my birthdays were celebrated together with family members, relatives and friends and a cake was cut.
Today I want to celebrate my ninetieth birthday by talking with special friends and with those with whom I am familiar and with thousands of noble persons of the world. I do not want to cut a cake. I want to talk about human beings.
While after the second world war now the world is on the verge of the third world war, from the last ten years I have been remembering Gandhi and writing books about how according to Gandhi’s own thoughts the world of Gandhi’s dream can be realized easily and with non violence.
Among them is the 700-page book The World of My Dream or the world of Gandhi’s dream which can lead the world to  global humanism through global freedom. (It was originally published in Gujarati, Gandhi’s language, with the title Mara Sapananu Vishva.)
Through my books about global humanism through global freedom and related works I have come in contact with many people in the last six years by email. I don’t know them and they don’t know me personally. But the way in which Gandhi keeps coming alive in my emails, these noble persons are touched and they congratulate me, encourage me and assure me that I will  definitely achieve success.
Among these persons are well-known scholars, admirers of Gandhi, thinkers, etc. I am deeply grateful to them.
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Looking at my life I am a cattle-grazing son of a farmer living in a remote village on a sea coast. But at the age of seven or eight I learned to recite “Long live Mahatma Gandhi” — those words keep echoing in my mind even now!
My education is seven standards in Gujarati and seven standards in English in five years. Several distinguished authors of Gujarati who are my friends often encourage me to write my autobiography revealing, among other things, the history of how this utterly simple village boy became capable to talk about such a great man as Gandhi. If I get time I would write my  autography but at present my only dream is to reincarnate Gandhi based on the way I have understood him that I have described in the books that I have written in the last ten years.
Let me present the prayer from the Rigveda, one of the four Vedas of the Sindhu culture considered to be the best in the world. In fact I have placed this prayer on the first page in the beginning of my book The World of My Dream.
Let minds of us all be alike
We all should have the feeling of Together may we be nourished, Together may we work with great energy. (one’s grief is another’s grief, one’s happiness is another’s happiness.)  Om, let there be peace in heavens: Peace in the sky: Peace on earth: Peace in waters: Peace in plants: Peace in trees: Peace among world’s Gods: Peace to Brahma: Peace everywhere: Peace and only peace: And let that Peace be in me: Om Peace Peace Peace: Let all be happy, all be healthy, minds of all be pure, let no one ever suffer misery. Let minds of us all be alike. These are the ideas of the prayer and also ideas of Gandhi.
As I said I have celebrated two or three of my birthdays by cutting a cake with family members, friends and relatives. Among them on my 83rd birthday, this is what I said in conclusion which is about my personal incident:
Chintan, my grandson, who is educated in English medium, once rebuked me, “Bapa, you don’t know English well and still you keep criticizing our English!” Then I wrote the following poem in English and put it in his hands the next day!
MY LOVE
I love my family,
I love my neighbors,
I love my country,
I love the whole world.
I do not know
What they do
Or what they have done.
I only know
They are all like me
And a part of me.
I love all babes and boys,
I love all young and old,
I love all men and women.
When their hearts are hurt
My heart is also hurt.
When they feel very happy
I also feel very happy.
Because
I am not other than them.
Because
They all reside in me.
My words are my thoughts
And my thoughts are  my poems.
I am struggling and struggling
To live with my words and thoughts
And with my poems too.
(While rendering the above poem of Nanubhai Naik in Gujarati, I was reminded of Rabindranath Tagore. –Girish Parikh.)
And here is the poem originally written in English by Sagar, the son of Kiritbhai, that he sent on my birthday from America where he had gone for education. It illustrates how I have entered into the mind of my third generation:
HAPPY BIRTHDAY BAPA
There is a quality about you  
That touches me deep in my heart.
This quality is so special
It sets you quite apart.
Your special and loving way
So much you give to others.
You have so many good qualities in You I see
I don’t see in other Grand Fathers.
I truly am so thankful BAPA
For what in You I see.
I hope some day my children
See the same things in me.
And in conclusion, here is the last paragraph of the gratitude that I expressed from my heart on my 83rd birthday:
Our home is the home of feeling. Our street is our home of feeling. Our entire city is our home of feeling. In our home or in our city no body is small, we do not look at any one’s faults. With our family, with our street and with entire city we are connected with feeling. Money gives happiness and money gives misery also. Money should neither be thrown away nor one should hold on to it. The happiness of money is connected with family as well as with the society. We have understood this fact and we do our best to live accordingly. My heart is filled with indescribable joy to see that you have come in such a large number on my 83rd birthday. I would try to deserve your respect.
I will be forever grateful to the several unknown friends, thinkers, admirers of Gandhi, proponents of humanism, historians who are searching for the solution of the present democracy without people, etc. and I want to thank first Surat’s Satyashodhak Sabha (Organization in search of truth), Charchapatri Sangha (Organization of opinion letter-writers),or organizations like Garima of women.
In 1916 Gandhi declared first time and wowed in Surat that he will end the British rule in India. To carry on Gandhi’s bold works to establish true Swaraj, after 100 years the friends from Surat, the city of Narmad, the legendary poet, got together in the historic Dandi, and the Gujarati edition of my book The World of My Dream was dedicated to Gandhi by Umabahen Desai (daughter of late Narayana Desai, the son of late Mahadeva Desai, the secretary of Gandhi) and Nilambahen Parikh (the fourth-generation member of Gandhi family.)  I do not have enough words to thank for their affection for me.
With such inspiring cooperation of all of you I have a strong conviction that the dream of global humanism cherished by Gandhi will be certainly realized.
–Nanubhai Naik
(Autograph in English)
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