The Complete Works of Swami Vivekananda (Volume 4)

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Vivekananda played a major role in the growing Indian nationalism in the late 19th and the 20th century, encouraging many Indians with his success and appeal in the west.

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His example helped to build pride in India's cultural and religious heritage, and to stand up against the British colonial system. He participated a lot during major movements against the British. According to Swami Vivekananda it is coordinated willpower that leads to independence. He gave the British colonial system as an example, with forty millions of Englishmen ruling three hundred millions of people in India. According to Vivekananda, the forty millions put their wills together and that resulted infinite power, and that was the reason of their success.

Vivekananda prescribed, to make a great future India the whole serest will lie in organization, accumulation of power, co-ordination of wills. It won't do now simply to sit in meditation on mountain tops without realizing in the least its usefulness. Now is wanted intense Karmayoga, with unbounded courage and indomitable strength in the heart.

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Then only will the people of the country be roused. According to Vivekananda the Indian race never cared about physical wealth, although they acquired immense wealth. Religion played a major role in Vivekananda's ideas. To Vivekananda religion was not only talk or doctrine or theory, but realization of the best and strongest powers within oneself. He said,. According to Swami Vivekananda, religion is the idea which is raising the brute into man, and man into God.

Religion was his main focus after self realization. Vivekananda was deeply influenced by the Brahmo Samaj , and by his guru Ramakrishna , who regarded the Absolute and the relative reality to be nondual aspects of the same integral reality. According to Michael Taft, Ramakrishna reconciled the dualism of form and formless, [8] regarding the Supreme Being to be both Personal and Impersonal, active and inactive.


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The Personal and Impersonal are the same thing, like milk and its whiteness, the diamond and its lustre, the snake and its wriggling motion. It is impossible to conceive of the one without the other. The Divine Mother and Brahman are one. Born into an aristocratic Bengali family of Calcutta , Vivekananda was inclined towards spirituality. He was influenced by his guru , Ramakrishna, from whom he learnt that all living beings were an embodiment of the divine self; therefore, service to God could be rendered by service to mankind.

After Ramakrishna's death, Vivekananda toured the Indian subcontinent extensively and acquired first-hand knowledge of the conditions prevailing in British India. Vivekananda conducted hundreds of public and private lectures and classes, disseminating tenets of Hindu philosophy in the United States, England and Europe. In India, Vivekananda is regarded as a patriotic saint and his birthday is celebrated there as National Youth Day. He belonged to a traditional family and was one of nine siblings.

His mother, Bhubaneswari Devi, was a devout housewife. The progressive, rational attitude of Narendra's father and the religious temperament of his mother helped shape his thinking and personality. The same search for direct intuition and understanding can be seen with Vivekananda. Not satisfied with his knowledge of philosophy, Narendra came to "the question which marked the real beginning of his intellectual quest for God. Instead of answering his question, Tagore said "My boy, you have the Yogi 's eyes.

In Narendra first met Ramakrishna, who became his spiritual focus after his own father had died in Narendra's first introduction to Ramakrishna occurred in a literature class at General Assembly's Institution when he heard Professor William Hastie lecturing on William Wordsworth 's poem, The Excursion. While explaining the word "trance" in the poem, Hastie suggested that his students visit Ramakrishna of Dakshineswar to understand the true meaning of trance.

This prompted some of his students including Narendra to visit Ramakrishna. According to Banhatti, "[a] singer, a painter, a wonderful master of language and a poet, Vivekananda was a complete artist", [] composing many songs and poems, including his favourite, " Kali the Mother ". Vivekananda blended humour with his teachings, and his language was lucid.

His Bengali writings testify to his belief that words spoken or written should clarify ideas, rather than demonstrating the speaker or writer's knowledge. His mother became his first teacher and taught him English and Bengali. Vivekananda listened from his mother the stories of Ramayana and Mahabharata. He was known then Vivekananda. He visited different parts of Europe and many foreigners including sister Nivedita became his disciple.

The Complete Works of Swami Vivekananda/Volume 4/Translation: Prose

Later on Vivekananda established Ramakrishna Mission on social, religious and cultural foundation. His divinity was greatly felt by the Indians through his speech and works. He breathed his last in Vivekananda considered Hinduism to be the mother of all religions. He established through historical sequence.

He showed that Vedic religion had influenced Buddhism which again was instrumental in influencing Christianity. He told that all the religions of the world have the same value and importance.

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In the Parliament of Religions he told—. But each must assimilate the spirit of the others and yet preserve his individuality and grow according to his own law of growth …. Thus, through his universal religion, Vivekananda preached the unity of God. He told that though the paths are different for different religions but the goal is same. He attached great importance to the unity of all religions and their fusion into one universal religion.

Vivekananda Discourses On Jnana-Yoga, Complete Works of Swami Vivekananda Volume 8

Swami Vivekananda was a great lover of Vedantic philosophy. The wife's religion the husband need not know, and he would not dare ask her what her religion is. It is well known that they would never say. It is only known to that person and the teacher. Sometimes you will find that what would be quite ludicrous to one will be just teaching for another.

Each is carrying his own burden and is to be helped according to his particular mind.

It is the business of every individual, between him, his teacher, and God. But there are certain general methods which all these teachers preach.

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Breathing [and] meditating are universal. That is the worship in India. Of course, they have other things to do. They cannot devote much time to this. But those who have taken this as the study of life, they practice various methods. Those that take it up under some person, they always feel the breath and the movements in all the different parts of the body. The Hindu boy or girl He gets from his Guru a word. This is called the root word. This word is given to the Guru [by his Guru], and he gives it to his disciple.

One such word is OM. All these symbols have a great deal of meaning, and they hold it secret, never write it. They must receive it through the ear — not through writing — from the teacher, and then hold it as God himself. Then they meditate on the word. I used to pray like that at one time, all through the rainy season, four months. I used to get up and take a plunge in the river, and with all my wet clothes on repeat [the Mantra] till the sun set. Then I ate something — a little rice or something. Four months in the rainy season! The Indian mind believes that there is nothing in the world that cannot be obtained.

If a man wants money in this country, he goes to work and earns money. There, he gets a formula and sits under a tree and believes that money must come. Everything must come by the power of his [thought]. You make money here.

It is the same thing. You put forth your whole energy upon money making. There are some sects called Hatha-Yogis.