Mahatma

Ma*hat"ma

(?), n. [Skr. mahtman, lit., great-souled, wise.] (Theosophy) One of a class of sages, or "adepts," reputed to have knowledge and powers of a higher order than those of ordinary men. The title was popularly applied to Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi in tribute to his wisdom, though not implying any supernatural powers; he is thus often referred to as Mahatma Ghandi or The Mahatma. He was most noted for his advocacy of non-violence in resisting oppression, and played an important role in convincing Great Britain to grant independence to India and Pakistan. -- Ma*hat"ma*ism (#), n.
[Webster 1913 Suppl. +PJC]

 

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