Quotes of Swami Vivekananda – 16

Quotes – 16

  1. May Shankara keep us steady in purity, patience, and perseverance!
  2. The past was great no doubt, but I sincerely believe that the future will be more glorious still.
  3. I, for one, thoroughly believe that no power in the universe can withhold from anyone anything he really deserves.
  4. Let us calmly and in a manly fashion go to work, instead of dissipating our energy in unnecessary frettings and fumings.
  5. Do any deserve liberty who are not ready to give it to others?
  6. We commenced to die the day we began to hate other races; and nothing can prevent our death unless we come back to expansion, which is life.
  7. Expansion is life, contraction is death. Love is life, and hatred is death.
  8. What the world is, and what we ourselves are, are the fruits of the freedom of the spirit.
  9. We hold that human progress is the result of the action of the human spirit.
  10. If we are not free, how can we hope to make the world better?
  11. The soul that reigns within is independent stud creates the desire for freedom.
  12. Every child born into the world brings with it a certain accumulated experience from previous incarnations; and the impress of this experience is seen in the structure of its mind and body. But the feeling of independence which possesses us all shows there is something in us besides mind and body.
  13. True religion comes not front the teaching of men or the reading of books; it is the awakening of the spirit within us, consequent upon pure and heroic action.
  14. Impress upon your children that true religion is positive and not negative, that it does not consist in merely refraining from evil, but in a persistent performance of noble decals.
  15. Very few indeed are those who are at once the possessors of an extensive sympathy and power of appreciation, as well as an intensity of love.
  16. The Bhakta must take care not to hate, nor even to criticise those radiant sons of light who are the founders of various sects;he must not even hear them spoken ill of.
  17. “They call You by so many names; they divide You, as it were, by different names, yet in each one of these is to be found Your omnipotence” You reach the worshipper through all of these, neither is there any special time so long as the soul has intense love for You. You are so easy of approach; it is my misfortune that I cannot love You.”
  18. A Bhakta must know that all the various sects of the various religions are the various manifestations of the glory of the same Lord.
  19. One who aspires to be a Bhakta must know that “so many opinions are so many ways”.
  20. The next thing to be considered is what we know as Ishta-Nishthâ.
  21. Being between these two poles of existence, if any one tells you that he is not going to worship God as man, take kindly care of that man; he is, not to use any harsher term, an irresponsible talker; his religion is for unsound and empty brains.
  22. The human brute does not worship because of his ignorance, and the Jivan muktas (free souls) do not worship because they have realised God in themselves.
  23. The extreme of ignorance and the other extreme of knowledge — neither of these go through acts of worship.
  24. To him all nature has become his own Self. He alone can worship God as He is. Here, too, as in all other cases, the two extremes meet.
  25. Two kinds of men do not worship God as man — the human brute who has no religion, and the Paramahamsa who has risen beyond all the weaknesses of humanity and has transcended the limits of his own human nature.
  26. The Indian nation never stood for imperial glory. Wealth and power, then, were not the ideals of the race.
  27. Quite content within their own boundaries, they never fought anybody.
  28. Everything now in India hinges on the question of how little a man requires to live upon. But we find that the Indian race never stood for wealth. Although they acquired immense wealth, perhaps more than any other nation ever acquired, yet the nation did not stand for wealth. It was a powerful race for ages, yet we find that that nation never stood for power, never went out of the country to conquer.
  29. Amongst all races of the world, from the earliest time in history, India has been called the land of wisdom.
  30. The banner of the spirituality cannot be raised too high in this country. In it alone is salvation.
  31. The national ideals of India are renunciation and service. Intensify her in these channels and the rest will take care of itself.
  32. If you intend to study the mind, you must have systematic training; you must practice to bring the mind under your control, to attain to that consciousness from which you will be able to study the mind and remain unmoved by any of its wild gyrations. Otherwise the facts observed will not be reliable; they will not apply to all people and therefore will not be truly facts or data at all.
  33. As we get further and further away from the animal state, our sense-pleasures become less and less; and our enjoyment, in a rapidly increasing consciousness of scientific and psychological knowledge, becomes more and more intense;&”knowledge for the sake of knowledge”, regardless of the amount of sense pleasures it may conduce to, becomes the supreme pleasure of the mind
  34. Only the smallest fraction of our scientific knowledge can have any such practical application to our daily lives. This is so because only an infinitely small percentage of our conscious mind is on the sensuous plane. We have just a little bit of sensuous consciousness and imagine that to be our entire mind and life; but, as a matter of fact, it is but a drop in the mighty ocean of subconscious mind. If all there is of us were a bundle of sense-perceptions, all the knowledge we could gain could be utilized in the gratification of our sense-pleasures. But fortunately such is not the case.
  35. People seem to forget that about ninety per cent of all our knowledge cannot, in the very nature of things, be applied in a practical way to add to our material happiness or to lessen our misery.
  36. The idea of psychology in the West is very much degraded. Psychology is the science of sciences; but in the West it is placed upon the same plane as all other sciences; that is, it is judged by the same criterion — utility.
  37. Some will come into this life better fitted and will do it quicker perhaps. We can all do the same. The same power is in everyone.
  38. In the lives of all great men, past and present, we find this tremendous power of concentration. Those are men of genius, you say. The science of Yoga tells us that we are all geniuses if we try hard to be.
  39. The difference in this world between mind & mind is simply the fact of concentration. One, more concentrated than the other, gets more knowledge
  40. You will have to concentrate your mind and turn it back upon itself.
  41. The astronomer concentrates his mind through the telescope… and so on. If you want to study your own mind, it will be the same process.
  42. No knowledge can be had of any science unless we can concentrate our minds upon the subject.
  43. All knowledge that we have, either of the external or internal world, is obtained through only one method —by the concentration of the mind.
  44. Tamas is typified as darkness or inactivity; Rajas is activity, expressed as attraction or repulsion; and Sattva is the equilibrium of the two. In every man there are these three forces. Sometimes Tamas prevails. We become lazy, we cannot move, we are inactive, bound down by certain ideas or by mere dullness. At other times activity prevails, and at still other times that calm balancing of both. Again, in different men, one of these forces is generally predominant. The characteristic of one man is inactivity, dullness and laziness; that of another, activity, power, manifestation of energy; and in still another we find the sweetness, calmness, and gentleness, which are due to the balancing of both action and inaction. So in all creation — in animals, plants, and men — we find the more or less typical manifestation of all these different forces.
  45. According to the Sânkhya philosophy, nature is composed of three forces called, in Sanskrit, Sattva, Rajas, and Tamas. These as manifested in the physical world are what we may call equilibrium, activity, and inertness.
  46. That society is the greatest, where the highest truths become practical.
  47. Truth does not pay homage to any society, ancient or modern. Society has to pay homage to Truth or die.
  48. The man whom I am criticising as not good may be wonderfully so in some points in which I am not.
  49. Now, in judging others you must always define your terms of courage or greatness.
  50. The same man who would rush to the mouth of a cannon shrinks from the knife of the surgeon; and another man who never dares to face a gun will calmly bear a severe surgical operation, if need be.
  51. We generally say, “A courageous man, a brave man, a daring man”, but we must bear in mind that that courage or bravery or any other trait does not always characterise the man.
  52. The more we learn, the more we find out how ignorant we are, how multiform and multisided is this mind of man. Then, you see that strength, power, and courage are things which are very peculiar.
  53. If I cannot get nectar, shall I fall back upon ditch water?
  54. If I do not find bliss in the life of the spirit, shall I seek satisfaction in the life of the senses?
  55. See not, touch not with your toes even, anything that is uncanny.
  56. By being pleasant always and smiling, it takes you nearer to God, nearer than any prayer.
  57. Despondency is not religion, whatever else it may be.
  58. When these cardinal virtues will be manifested in you, then only you will be able to work with great energy.
  59. You must express your sympathy with people of all sects.
  60. If anybody comes to you for vain dispute, politely withdraw yourself.
  61. Many things may occur to the mind, but it gradually makes a mountain of a mole-hill, if you try to express them. Everything ends, if you forgive and forget.
  62. Know that talking ill of others in private is a sin. You must wholly avoid it.
  63. There is a mellowness and a calmness in life now, which never was before. I am learning now how to be attached as well as detached and mentally becoming my own master….
  64. Work always brings dirt with it. I paid for the accumulated dirt with bad health. I am glad my mind is all the better for it.
  65. You must have an iron will if you would cross the ocean. You must be strong enough to pierce mountains
  66. Nature wants us to react, to return blow for blow, cheating for cheating, lie for lie, to hit back with all our might, then it requires a super divine power not hit back, to keep control, to be unattached
  67. Bold are my words and let me repeat that it is the greatest privilege in our lives that we are allowed to serve the Lord in all these shapes
  68. The poor and the miserable are for our salvation, so that we may serve the Lord, coming in the shape of the distressed, coming in the shape of the lunatic, the leper, the sinner.
  69. I should see God in the poor and it is for my salvation that I go and worship them.
  70. Be grateful to the man you help, think of him as God. Is it not a great privilege to be allowed to worship God by helping our fellowmen?
  71. Be thankful that you are allowed to exercise your power of benevolence and mercy in the world and thus, become pure and perfect.
  72. You worship. When you give a morsel of food to a dog, you worship the dog as God. He is all and is in all.
  73. Cut out the word help from your mind. You cannot help; it is blasphemy!
  74. Do you think even an ant will die for want of your help? Most arrogant blasphemy! The world does not need you at all.
  75. He allows you to work… not in order to help Him, but that you may help yourself.
  76. God has not fallen into a ditch for you and me to help Him out by building a hospital, or something of that sort!
  77. All the work you do, is done for your own salvation, is done for your own benefit.
  78. Books and learning, yoga, meditation and illumination – all are but dust compared to love.
  79. It is the heart that conquers, not the brain.
  80. If in the attempt to carry morsels of food to starving mouths, name and possession and all be doomed even – thrice blessed art thou!
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