I came across this quote while looking at sayings printed on silk scrolls at a mini-flea market in civic center plaza today. The quote is so profound and challenges each of us to not only look within ourselves for answers, but also to act by changing the things within ourselves that are not part of our harmonious outlook for society.
That means we must address our own prejudices before criticizing the prejudice of others, we must be open to being a friend to strangers before expecting strangers to befriend us, we must (as in the Gandhi sugar story) stop our own unhealthy habit of something before we can instruct others to give up that same habit.
While looking up the quote on-line I found that researchers have been unable to find proof in attributing the quote to Gandhi. He may have never actually said it verbatim, but reading some of what he did say shows that he was on the same page regarding self change.
Gandhi is quoted as saying something related to the idea of personal change as follows:
"If we could change ourselves, the tendencies in the world would also change. As a man changes his own nature, so does the attitude of the world change towards him. ... We need not wait to see what others do."
note: Interesting that research tracks the saying to a 1972 book "The Love Project Way" by Arleen Lorrance (co-authored by Diane Kennedy Pike.)