10 December 2014

Swami Vivekananda's Quotes On Patriotism

In this article we'll make a collection of Swami Vivekananda's quotes on patriotism. This article will also include quotes on patriotism for India.

Swami Vivekananda on Patriotism

Swami Vivekananda
Image source: Wikimedia Commons
Swami Vivekananda told—
  • [Important quote] I believe in patriotism, and I also have my own ideal of patriotism. Three things are necessary for great achievements. First, feel from the heart. What is in the intellect or reason? It goes a few steps and there it stops. But through the heart comes inspiration. Love opens the most impossible gates; love is the gate to all the secrets of the universe. Feel, therefore, my would-be reformers, my would-be patriots! Do you feel? Do you feel that millions and millions of the descendants of gods and of sages have become next-door neighbours to brutes? Do you feel that millions are starving today, and millions have been starving for ages? Do you feel that ignorance has come over the land as a dark cloud? Does it make you restless? Does it make you sleepless? Has it gone into your blood, coursing through your veins, becoming consonant with your heartbeats? Has it made you almost mad? Are you seized with that one idea of the misery of ruin, and have you forgotten all about your name, your fame, your wives, your children, your property, even your own bodies? Have you done that? That is the first step to become a patriot, the very first step. I did not go to America, as most of you know, for the Parliament of Religions, but this demon of a feeling was in me and within my soul. I travelled twelve years all over India, finding no way to work for my countrymen, and that is why I went to America. Most of you know that, who knew me then. Who cared about this Parliament of Religions? Here was my own flesh and blood sinking every day, and who cared for them? This was my first step.[Source]
  • Our sacred motherland is a land of religion and philosophy — the birthplace of spiritual giants — the land of renunciation, where and where alone, from the most ancient to the most modern times, there has been the highest ideal of life open to man.[Source]
  • The only religion that is fashionable is patriotism.[Source]
  • The present enthusiasm is only a little patriotism, it means nothing. If it is true and genuine, you will find in a short time hundreds of heroes coming forward and carrying on the work. Therefore know that you have really done all, and go on.[Source]
  • Whether you believe in spirituality or not, for the sake of the national life, you have to get a hold on spirituality and keep to it. Then stretch the other hand out and gain all you can from other races, but everything must be subordinated to that one ideal of life; and out of that a wonderful, glorious, future India will come — I am sure it is coming — a greater India than ever was. Sages will spring up greater than all the ancient sages; and your ancestors will not only be satisfied, but I am sure, they will be proud from their positions in other worlds to look down upon their descendants, so glorious, and so great.[Source]
  • You must not depend on any foreign help. Nations, like individuals, must help themselves. This is real patriotism. If a nation cannot do that, its time has not yet come. It must wait.[Source]


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Knowledge Is Power

Latin phrase "Scientia potentia est" means "knowledge is power". The phrase is commonly attributed to Sir Francis Bacon, however it is unclear that in which book or literary work he told or wrote this.

Our this article's topic is Swami Vivekananda's quotations on knowledge is power.

Knowledge is power

Swami Vivekananda image
Image source: Wikimedia Commons
According to Swami Vivekananda—
  • From my childhood everyone around me taught weakness; I have been told ever since I was born that I was a weak thing. It is very difficult for me now to realise my own strength, but by analysis and reasoning I gain knowledge of my own strength, I realise it.[Source]
  • It is absurd to suppose that sense happiness is the goal of humanity, we find as a conclusion that knowledge is the goal of all life. I have tried to show to you that in these thousands of years of struggle for the search of truth and the benefit of mankind, we have scarcely made the least appreciable advance. But mankind has made gigantic advance in knowledge.[Source]
  • Knowledge alone can make us perfect.[Source]
  • No action can give you freedom; only knowledge can make you free, Knowledge is irresistible; the mind cannot take it or reject it. When it comes the mind has to accept it; so it is not a work of the mind; only, its expression comes in the mind.[Source]
  • Only knowledge can free and save us, but with knowledge must go virtue.[Source]
  • Pleasure is not the goal of man, but knowledge. Pleasure and happiness come to an end. It is a mistake to suppose that pleasure is the goal. The cause of all the miseries we have in the world is that men foolishly think pleasure to be the ideal to strive for. After a time man finds that it is not happiness, but knowledge, towards which he is going, and that both pleasure and pain are great teachers, and that he learns as much from evil as from good.[Source]
  • The gift of knowledge is a far higher gift than that of food and clothes; it is even higher than giving life to a man, because the real life of man consists of knowledge. Ignorance is death, knowledge is life. Life is of very little value, if it is a life in the dark, groping through ignorance and misery.[Source]
  • Which is the goal of man? Enjoyment or knowledge? Certainly not enjoyment. Man is not born to have pleasure or to suffer pain. Knowledge is the goal. Knowledge is the only pleasure we can have.[Source]

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Importance Of Practical Experience

Swami Vivekananda observed—[Source]
All our knowledge is based upon experience.
He also told—[Source]
Experience is the only teacher we have.
In this article we'll make a collection of Swami Vivekananda's quotations where he discussed importance of practical experience.

Importance of Practical Experience

Swami Vivekananda 1895 image, black and white
Image source: Wikimedia Commons
Swami Vivekananda told—
  • All our knowledge is based upon experience. What we call inferential knowledge, in which we go from the less to the more general, or from the general to the particular, has experience as its basis.[Source]
  • Experience is the only source of knowledge.[Source]
  • Experience is the only teacher we have. We may talk and reason all our lives, but we shall not understand a word of truth, until we experience it ourselves. You cannot hope to make a man a surgeon by simply giving him a few books. You cannot satisfy my curiosity to see a country by showing me a map; I must have actual experience. Maps can only create curiosity in us to get more perfect knowledge. Beyond that, they have no value whatever.[Source]
  • The secret of life is not enjoyment, but education through experience.[Source]
  • There cannot be any knowledge but from experience.[Source]
  • We get truth from both of these by means of experience. The truth gathered from internal experience is psychology, metaphysics, and religion; from external experience, the physical sciences.[Source]
  • We may read books, hear lectures, and talk miles, but experience is the one teacher, the one eye-opener. It is best as it is. We learn, through smiles and tears we learn. We don't know why, but we see it is so; and that is enough.[Source]
  • You may sit down and listen to me by the hour every day, but if you do not practice, you will not get one step further. It all depends on practice. We never understand these things until we experience them. We will have to see and feel them for ourselves. Simply listening to explanations and theories will not do.[Source]

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09 December 2014

Swami Vivekananda On Technical Education

If you have been following our project, most probably you have noticed that in our website we have been preparing a series of articles on Swami Vivekananda's quotes on education.

In this article we'll attempt to make a collection of Swami Vivekananda's quotes on technical education.

On Technical Education

Image source: Wikimedia Commons
Swami Vivekananda told—
  • If I can get some unmarried graduates, I may try to send them over to Japan and make arrangements for their technical education there, so that when they come back, they may turn their knowledge to the best account for India. What a good thing that would be![Source]
  • It would be better if the people got a little technical education, so that they might find work and earn their bread, instead of dawdling about and crying for service.[Source]
  • What we need, you know, is to study, independent of foreign control, different branches of the knowledge that is our own, and with it the English language and Western science; we need technical education and all else that may develop industries So that men, instead of seeking for service, may earn enough to provide for themselves, and save something against a rainy day.[Source]

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08 December 2014

How To Change Our Character?

In this website we prepared an article on Swami Vivekananda's quotes and comments on character.

Now, here we are preparing a  sub-article- Swami Vivekananda's views on how to change our character?

How to change our character

Swami Vivekananda in Chennai February 1897
Image source: Wikimedia Commons
Swami Vivekananda told—
  • All the actions that we see in the world, all the movements in human society, all the works that we have around us, are simply the display of thought, the manifestation of the will of man. Machines or instruments, cities, ships, or men-of-war, all these are simply the manifestation of the will of man; and this will is caused by character, and character is manufactured by Karma.[Source]
  • Character is repeated habits, and repeated habits alone can reform character.[Source]
  • Every work that we do, every movement of the body, every thought that we think, leaves such an impression on the mind-stuff, and even when such impressions are not obvious on the surface, they are sufficiently strong to work beneath the surface, subconsciously. What we are every moment is determined by the sum total of these impressions on the mind. What I am just at this moment is the effect of the sum total of all the impressions of my past life. This is really what is meant by character; each man's character is determined by the sum total of these impressions. If good impressions prevail, the character becomes good; if bad, it becomes bad. If a man continuously hears bad words, thinks bad thoughts, does bad actions, his mind will be full of bad impressions; and they will influence his thought and work without his being conscious of the fact. In fact, these bad impressions are always working, and their resultant must be evil, and that man will be a bad man; he cannot help it. The sum total of these impressions in him will create the strong motive power for doing bad actions. He will be like a machine in the hands of his impressions, and they will force him to do evil. Similarly, if a man thinks good thoughts and does good works, the sum total of these impressions will be good; and they, in a similar manner, will force him to do good even in spite of himself. When a man has done so much good work and thought so many good thoughts that there is an irresistible tendency in him to do good in spite of himself and even if he wishes to do evil, his mind, as the sum total of his tendencies, will not allow him to do so; the tendencies will turn him back; he is completely under the influence of the good tendencies. When such is the case, a man's good character is said to be established.[Source]
  • Great work requires great and persistent effort for a long time. Neither need we trouble ourselves if a few fail. It is in the nature of things that many should fall, that troubles should come, that tremendous difficulties should arise, that selfishness and all the other devils in the human heart should struggle hard when they are about to be driven out by the fire of spirituality. The road to the Good is the roughest and steepest in the universe. It is a wonder that so many succeed, no wonder that so many fall. Character has to be established through a thousand stumbles.[Source]
  • If you really want to judge of the character of a man, look not at his great performances. Every fool may become a hero at one time or another. Watch a man do his most common actions; those are indeed the things which will tell you the real character of a great man. Great occasions rouse even the lowest of human beings to some kind of greatness, but he alone is the really great man whose character is great always, the same wherever he be.[Source]
  • The only remedy for bad habits is counter habits; all the bad habits that have left their impressions are to be controlled by good habits. Go on doing good, thinking holy thoughts continuously; that is the only way to suppress base impressions. Never say any man is hopeless, because he only represents a character, a bundle of habits, which can be checked by new and better ones. Character is repeated habits, and repeated habits alone can reform character.[Source]
  • We are what our thoughts have made us; so take care of what you think. Words are secondary. Thoughts live, they travel far. Each thought we think is tinged with our own character, so that for the pure and holy man, even his jests or abuse will have the twist of his own love and purity and do good.[Source]

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07 December 2014

Who Is A Real Teacher?

In this website we wrote an article on Swami Vivekananda's quotes on teachers and teaching (linked at the end of this article).

Now we are going to write a sub-article— Swami Vivekananda's quotes and views on "Who is a real teacher"?

Who is a real teacher?

Image source: Wikimedia Commons
According to Swami Vivekananda—
  • In regard to the teacher, we must see that he knows the spirit of the scriptures. The whole world reads Bibles, Vedas, and Korans; but they are all only words, syntax, etymology, philology, the dry bones of religion. The teacher who deals too much in words and allows the mind to be carried away by the force of words loses the spirit. It is the knowledge of the spirit of the scriptures alone that constitutes the true religious teacher.[Source]
  • No one was ever really taught by another; each of us has to teach himself. The external teacher offers only the suggestion which rouses the internal teacher to work to understand things.[Source]
  • The function of the teacher is indeed an affair of the transference of something, and not one of mere stimulation of the existing intellectual or other faculties in the taught. Something real and appreciable as an influence comes from the teacher and goes to the taught. Therefore the teacher must be pure.[Source]
  • The only true teacher is he who can convert himself, as it were, into a thousand persons at a moment's notice. The only true teacher is he who can immediately come down to the level of the student, and transfer his soul to the student's soul and see through the student's eyes and hear through his ears and understand through his mind. Such a teacher can really teach and none else. All these negative, breaking-down, destructive teachers that are in the world can never do any good.[Source]
  • The second condition necessary in the teacher is — sinlessness. The question is often asked, "Why should we look into the character and personality of a teacher? We have only to judge of what he says, and take that up." This is not right. If a man wants to teach me something of dynamics, or chemistry, or any other physical science, he may be anything he likes, because what the physical sciences require is merely an intellectual equipment; but in the spiritual sciences it is impossible from first to last that there can be any spiritual light in the soul that is impure. What religion can an impure man teach?[Source]
  • The true teacher is one who can throw his whole force into the tendency of the taught. Without real sympathy we can never teach well.[Source]

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30 November 2014

Let People Say Whatever They Like

Swami Vivekananda observed—[Source]
Each work has to pass through these stages — ridicule, opposition, and then acceptance.
He also asked—[Source]
Let us remember the words of Kâlidâsa: "Fools blame the actions of the great, because they are extraordinary and their reasons past the finding-out of ordinary mortals."

According to Swami Vivekananda, we should not be afraid or stop or work because of mere criticism or opposition. "Let people say whatever they like", we should—[Source]
Take up one idea. Make that one idea your life — think of it, dream of it, live on that idea. Let the brain, muscles, nerves, every part of your body, be full of that idea, and just leave every other idea alone. This is the way to success,

Let people say whatever they like

Uncle Sam
Let people say whatever they like, stick to your own convictions
— Swami Vivekananda 
Image source: Wikimedia Commons
According to Swami Vivekananda OR Swami Vivekananda told—
  • Let people praise you or blame you, let fortune smile or frown upon you, let your body fall today or after a Yuga, see that you do not deviate from the path of Truth.[Source]
  • Let people say whatever they like, stick to your own convictions, and rest assured, the world will be at your feet. They say, "Have faith in this fellow or that fellow", but I say, "Have faith in yourself first", that's the way. Have faith in yourself—all power is in you—be conscious and bring it out. Say, "I can do everything." "Even the poison of a snake is powerless if you can firmly deny it." Beware! No saying "nay", no negative thoughts! Say, "Yea, Yea," "So'ham, So'ham"—"I am He! I am He!"[Source]
  • Let people say whatever they will — "Men (who wrongly criticise) are to be treated as worms!" as Shri Ramakrishna used to say. Let there be no disparity between what you profess and what you do. . .[Source]
  • . . .let people say what they will. Let anyone write anything for or against me in the papers; you shouldn't take the slightest notice.[Source]
  • Let people speak out their own opinions, why should we object?[Source]

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29 November 2014

"Be Not Afraid" — Swami Vivekananda's Suggestions

In this website we have been preparing a series of articles on Swami Vivekananda's motivational and inspirational quotes.

In this article we'll make a compilation of those Swami Vivekananda quotes, where he asked "not to be afraid".

Be not afraid

Swami Vivekananda
Image source: Wikimedia Commons
Swami Vivekananda told—
  • Be not afraid. Awake, arise, and stop not till the goal is reached![Source]
  • "Be not afraid even if there is evil in your work, for there is no work which has no evil." "Leave it unto the Lord, and do not look for the results."[Source]
  • Be not afraid, for all great power, throughout the history of humanity, has been with he people. From out of their ranks have come all the greatest geniuses of the world, and history can only repeat itself. Be not afraid of anything. You will do marvellous work. The moment you fear, you are nobody. It is fear that is the great cause of misery in the world. It is fear that is the greatest of all superstitions. It is fear that is the cause of our woes, and it is fearlessness that brings heaven even in a moment. Therefore, "Arise, awake, and stop not till the goal is reached."[Source]
  • Be not afraid, my children. Look not up in that attitude of fear towards that infinite starry vault as if it would crush you. Wait! In a few hours more, the whole of it will be under your feet. Wait, money does not pay, nor name; fame does not pay, nor learning. It is love that pays; it is character that cleaves its way through adamantine walls of difficulties.[Source]
  • Be not afraid. Think not how many times you fail. Never mind. Time is infinite. Go forward: assert yourself again and again, and light must come. You may pray to everyone that was ever born, but who will come to help you? And what of the way of death from which none knows escape? Help thyself out by thyself. None else can help thee, friend. For thou alone art thy greatest enemy, thou alone art thy greatest friend. Get hold of the Self, then. Stand up. Don't be afraid. In the midst of all miseries and all weakness, let the Self come out, faint and imperceptible though it be at first. You will gain courage, and at last like a lion you will roar out, "I am It! I am It!" "I am neither a man, nor a woman, nor a god, nor a demon; no, nor any of the animals, plants, or trees. I am neither poor nor rich, neither learned nor ignorant. All these things are very little compared with what I am: for I am It! I am It! Behold the sun and the moon and the stars: I am the light that is shining in them! I am the beauty of the fire! I am the power in the universe! For, I am It! I am It![Source]

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Importance Of Bhakti In Bahagavad Gita

Bhakti or Devotion is a very important theme in the Bhagavad Gita. In Chapter 7, verse 1, Shri Krishna tells—
With the mind clinging to Me, O Partha, performing yoga, refuged in Me, how thou shalt without doubt know Me to the uttermost, that hear thou.
In Chapter 9, verse 26, Shri Krishna tells—
He who offers to Me with devotion a leaf, a flower, a fruit, water, that I accept from the striving self, offered as it is with devotion.
In Chapter 11, verse 54, Shri Krishna assures—
By devotion to Me alone I may thus be perceived, Arjuna, and known and seen in essence, and entered, O Parantapa.

There are many more verses in Bhagavd Gita explaining and discussing Bhakti/devotion. Our this articles' topic is— importance of Bhakti in Bhagavad Gita — according to Swami Vivekananda.

Importance of Bhakti in Bhagavad Gita

Krishna and Meera
Image source: Wikimedia Commons
Swami Vivekananda told—
  • If you want to be a Bhakta, it is not at all necessary for you to know whether Krishna was born in Mathurâ or in Vraja, what he was doing, or just the exact date on which he pronounced the teachings of the Gitâ. You only require to feel the craving for the beautiful lessons of duty and love in the Gita. All the other particulars about it and its author are for the enjoyment of the learned. Let them have what they desire. Say "Shântih, Shântih" to their learned controversies, and let us "eat the mangoes".[Source]
  • Let us see some of the main points discussed in the Gita. Wherein lies the originality of the Gita which distinguishes it from all preceding scriptures? It is this: Though before its advent, Yoga, Jnana, Bhakti, etc. had each its strong adherents, they all quarrelled among themselves, each claiming superiority for his own chosen path; no one ever tried to seek for reconciliation among these different paths. It was the author of the Gita who for the first time tried to harmonise these. He took the best from what all the sects then existing had to offer and threaded them in the Gita. But even where Krishna failed to show a complete reconciliation (Samanvaya) among these warring sects, it was fully accomplished by Ramakrishna Paramahamsa in this nineteenth century.[Source]
  • Says Krishna in the Gita: The Lord is the only One who never changes. His love never fails. Wherever we are and whatever we do, He is ever and ever the same merciful, the same loving heart. He never changes, He is never angry, whatever we do. How can God be angry with us? Your babe does many mischievous things: are you angry with that babe? Does not God know what we are going to be? He knows we are all going to be perfect, sooner or later. He has patience, infinite patience. We must love Him, and everyone that lives — only in and through Him. This is the keynote.[Source]
  • To obtain Bhakti, seek the company of holy men who have Bhakti, and read books like the Gita and the Imitation of Christ; always think of the attributes of God.[Source]


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28 November 2014

20 Mind-Boggling Quotations Of Swami Vivekananda

Swami Vvekananda 1893
Image source: Wikimedia Commons
As you are aware that in this website we have been preparing articles and compilations of Swami Vivekananda on every possible topic and subject.

Here is a(nother) special article of this website. Here you'll find 20 mind-boggling quotations of Swami Vivekananda.

All of you may not find these quotations mind-boggling. We, however, found these quotations—
  1. thought-provoking
  2. insightful
  3. interesting
  4. powerful
Hope you'll like our attempt. (following our practice, we'll use WikiSource to refer quotes, so that you can read the entire chapter or discourse easily and freely)

20 Mind-Boggling Quotations of Swami Vivekananda

  • A great sage used to say, "Suppose there is a thief in a room, and somehow he comes to know that there is a vast mass of gold in the next room, and that there is only a thin partition between the two rooms What would be the condition of that thief? He would be sleepless, he would not be able to eat or do anything. His whole mind would be on getting that gold. Do you mean to say that, if all these people really believed that the Mine of Happiness, of Blessedness, of Glory were here, they would act as they do in the world, without trying to get God?" As soon as a man begins to believe there is a God, he becomes mad with longing to get to Him. Others may go their way, but as soon as a man is sure that there is a much higher life than that which he is leading here, as soon as he feels sure that the senses are not all, that this limited, material body is as nothing compared with the immortal, eternal, undying bliss of the Self, he becomes mad until he finds out this bliss for himself. And this madness, this thirst, this mania, is what is called the "awakening" to religion, and when that has come, a man is beginning to be religious.[Source]
②③
  • How absurd to take the credit of doing the good act on oneself and lay the blame for the evil act on the Lord![Source]
  • Let us remember the words of Kâlidâsa: "Fools blame the actions of the great, because they are extraordinary and their reasons past the finding-out of ordinary mortals."[Source]
④⑤
  • Strength and manliness are virtue; weakness and cowardice are sin.[Source]
  • We are for ever trying to make our weakness look like strength, our sentiment like love, our cowardice like courage, and so on.[Source]

⑥⑦
  • If education is identical with information, the libraries are the greatest sages in the world, and encyclopaedias are the Rishis.[Source]
  • If the mountain does not come to Mohammed, Mohammed must go to the mountain. If the poor cannot come to education, education must reach them at the plough, in the factory, everywhere.[Source]
On Fear
 ⑧⑨
  • Always say, "I have no fear." Tell this to everybody --"Have no fear". Fear is death, fear is sin, fear is hell, fear is unrighteousness, fear is wrong life. All the negative thoughts and ideas that are in this world have proceeded from this evil spirit of fear. This fear alone has kept the sun, air and death in their respective places and functions, allowing none to escape from their bounds.[Source]
  • In this world we work through fear of others, we talk through fear, we think through fear, alas! we are born in a land of enemies. Who is there who has been able to get rid of this feeling of fear, as if everyone is a spy set specially to watch him? And woe unto the man who pushes himself forward! Will it ever be a land of friends? Who knows?[Source]


  • Friendship with many is best at a distance, and everything goes well with the person who stands on his own feet.[Source]

⑪⑫
  • God is the one goal of all our passions and emotions. If you want to be angry, be angry with Him. Chide your Beloved, chide your Friend. Whom else can you safely chide? Mortal man will not patiently put up with your anger; there will be a reaction. If you are angry with me I am sure quickly to react, because I cannot patiently put up with your anger. Say unto the Beloved, "Why do You not come to me; why do You leave me thus alone?" Where is there any enjoyment but in Him? What enjoyment can there be in little clods of earth? It is the crystallised essence of infinite enjoyment that we have to seek, and that is in God. Let all our passions and emotions go up unto Him They are meant for Him. . .[Source]
  • Go to God directly. No theories, no doctrines. Then alone will all doubts vanish. Then alone will all crookedness be made straight.[Source]

  • The only remedy for bad habits is counter habits; all the bad habits that have left their impressions are to be controlled by good habits. Go on doing good, thinking holy thoughts continuously; that is the only way to suppress base impressions. Never say any man is hopeless, because he only represents a character, a bundle of habits, which can be checked by new and better ones. Character is repeated habits, and repeated habits alone can reform character.[Source]

On Love
⑭⑮
  • Beggar's love is no love at all. The first sign of love is when love asks nothing, [when it] gives everything.[Source]
  • Man rails in love with woman, and woman goes to die for man. The chances are that in five minutes John kicks Jane, and Jane kicks John. This is a materialism and no love at all. If John could really love Jane, he would be perfect that moment.[Source]

  • Each work has to pass through these stages — ridicule, opposition, and then acceptance. Each man who thinks ahead of his time is sure to be misunderstood. So opposition and persecution are welcome, only I have to be steady and pure and must have immense faith in God, and all these will vanish. . . .[Source]

  • I was once travelling in the desert in India. I travelled for over a month and always found the most beautiful landscapes before me, beautiful lakes and all that. One day I was very thirsty and I wanted to have a drink at one of these lakes; but when I approached that lake it vanished. Immediately with a blow came into my brain the idea that this was a mirage about which I had read all my life; and then I remembered and smiled at my folly, that for the last month all the beautiful landscapes and lakes I had been seeing were this mirage, but I could not distinguish them then. The next morning I again began my march; there was the lake and the landscape, but with it immediately came the idea, "This is a mirage." Once known it had lost its power of illusion. So this illusion of the universe will break one day. The whole of this will vanish, melt away. This is realization.[Source]

On Salvation

  • Salvation never will come through hope of reward.[Source]

On Weakness
⑲⑳
  • The remedy for weakness is not brooding over weakness, but thinking of strength.[Source]
  • Many a time comes when we want to interpret our weakness and cowardice as forgiveness and renunciation.[Source]


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