Acharya Vinoba Bhave is widely regarded as Mahatma Gandhi's spiritual successor. He was a saintly scholar, social reformer and leader of India.
Vinoba Bhave was born in the Kolaba District of Maharashtra on September 11, 1895. In his youth, he was drawn to Mahatma Gandhi and his ideals of non-violent struggle for freedom. His talks on the Bhagavad Gita, delivered when he was in jail, were innovative and inspiring. The movements initiated by him, Bhoodan (Gift of Land), Sampattidan (Gift of Wealth), Jeevadan (Gift of Life) and other movements were inspired by Gandhiji's program of national reconstruction.
Vinoba Bhave believed in the essential unity of mankind. He opposed segregating people as backward classes or untouchables. In order to understand people of other faiths like Muslims better, he learnt Arabic and studied the Quran. Among the various teachings that he gave to the people, Vinobaji emphasized the role of self-help as in self-improvement, derived from the Bhagavad Gita.
Vinobaji passed away on November 17, 1982. He was honored with the Bharat Ratna, the highest civilian honor, in 1984.