Friday, January 19, 2018

Real Giving Up of World

If we understand the giving up of the world in its old, crude sense, then it would come to this: that we must not work, that we must be idle, sitting like lumps of earth, neither thinking nor doing anything, but must become fatalists, driven about by every circumstance, ordered about by the laws of nature, drifting from place to place. That would be the result. 

But that is not what is meant. 
We must work. … …  

He works, who is not propelled by his own desires, by any selfishness whatsoever. He works, who has no ulterior motive in view. 
He works, who has nothing to gain from work. 

   - Swami Vivekananda, Jnana-Yoga, London

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Social and Religious Liberty

We, in India, allowed liberty in spiritual matters, and we have a tremendous spiritual power in religious thought even today. You grant the same liberty in social matters, and so have a splendid social organisation. 

We have not given any freedom to the expansion of social matters, and ours is a cramped society. You have never given any freedom in religious matters but with fire and sword have enforced your beliefs, and the result is that religion is a stunted, degenerated growth in the European mind. 

In India, we have to take the shackles from society; in Europe, the chains must be taken from the feet of spiritual progress.
Swami Vivekananda, Jnana-Yoga, London

Monday, January 15, 2018

God as Soul and Human Being

The idea that the goal is far off, far beyond nature, attracting us all towards it, has to be brought nearer and nearer, without degrading or degenerating it. 
The God of heaven becomes the God in nature, and the God in nature becomes the God who is nature, and the God who is nature becomes the God within this temple of the body, and the God dwelling in the temple of the body at last becomes the temple itself, becomes the soul and man -- and there it reaches the last words it can teach. 

                - Swami Vivekananda, Jnana-Yoga, London

Saturday, January 13, 2018

Walking on Razor's Edge

Religion begins with a tremendous dissatisfaction with the present state of things, with our lives, and a hatred, an intense hatred, for this patching up of life, an unbounded disgust for fraud and lies. 

He alone can be religious who dares say, as the mighty Buddha once said under the Bo–tree … … 
"Death is better than a vegetating ignorant life; it is better to die on the battle-field than to live a life of defeat." 

This is the basis of religion. … 
Those who dare, therefore, to struggle for victory, for truth, for religion, are in the right way; and that is what the Vedas preach: Be not in despair; the way is very difficult, like walking on the edge of a razor; yet despair not, arise, awake, and find the ideal, the goal. 

            - Swami Vivekananda, Jnana-Yoga, London