Gandhi and the goat's meat

When he was thirteen, Gandhi got married to a girl of the same age. The two were extremely fond of each other. When Gandhi was about eighteen, he wanted to go to Europe to continue his college studies. By that time, his father had died and his mother was in charge of his life. Gandhi's relatives also wanted Gandhi to go to Europe and they requested his mother to send her son. But she was very worried. She said, "No, no. If I send him to Europe, he will be ruined. Now he is so close to me. There he will start drinking, eating meat and mixing with women."

Gandhi promised his mother that he would not drink, eat meat or mix with women, and he did keep his promise. After getting his degree in law, he came home. On his return he found that his mother had died.

Gandhi had a Muslim friend who always tried to persuade him to eat meat. "No," Gandhi would answer him. "Hindus don't eat meat, especially my caste. My ancestors never ate meat."

But the friend insisted. "If you don't eat meat, you will remain weak. You have to eat meat if you want to be physically strong."

Gandhi very much wanted to be physically strong. "Are you sure it will make me strong?" he asked.

"Yes," replied his Muslim friend.

Since Gandhi was very weak, one evening he tried some goat's meat. That night Gandhi saw that the goat was crying inside his stomach. The goat was so miserable.

Gandhi cried, "I can't eat meat anymore! I have seen the goat crying inside me." And he gave up eating meat forever.

But he was fond of goat's milk, and he used to drink it. "One can take goat's milk," he used to say, "but not goat's meat."