- Swami Vivekananda's 117th death anniversary
Today, July 4 marks Swami Vivekananda’s 117th death anniversary.
Swami Vivekananda 12 January 1863 – 4 July 1902), born Narendranath Datta, was an Indian Hindu monk, a chief disciple of the 19th-century Indian mystic Ramakrishna.
He was the main person in the introduction of the Indian philosophies of Vedanta and Yoga to the Western world and is credited with raising interfaith awareness and bringing Hinduism to the status of a major world religion.
Vivekananda founded the Ramakrishna Math and the Ramakrishna Mission and he is always known for his speech which began with the words – “Sisters and brothers of America”, in which he introduced Hinduism at the Parliament of the World’s Religions in Chicago in 1893.
Remembering the famous quotes by Swami Vivekananda:
- Stand as a rock; you are indestructible. You are the Self (atman), the God of the universe.
- 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.
- We are responsible for what we are, and whatever we wish ourselves to be, we have the power to make ourselves. If what we are now has been the result of our own past actions, it certainly follows that whatever we wish to be in future can be produced by our present actions; so we have to know how to act
- Even the greatest fool can accomplish a task if it were after his or her heart. But the intelligent ones are those who can convert every work into one that suits their taste
- Is there any sex-distinction in the Atman (Self)? Out with the differentiation between man and woman—all is Atman! Give up the identification with the body, and stand up!
- We must have friendship for all; we must be merciful toward those that are in misery; when people are happy, we ought to be happy; and to the wicked, we must be indifferent. These attitudes will make the mind peaceful.
- Take up one idea, make that one idea your life, think of it, dream of it, 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
- Understanding human nature is the highest knowledge, and only by knowing it can we know God. It is also a fact that the knowledge of God is the highest knowledge, and only by knowing God can we understand human nature
- Astrology and all these mystical things are generally signs of a weak mind; therefore as soon as they are becoming prominent in our minds, we should see a physician, take good food, and rest
- Take courage and work on. Patience and steady work–this is the only way. Go on. Remember–patience and purity and courage and steady work. So long as you are true and pure, you will never fail. Mother will never leave you. All blessings will be on you.
Swamiji suffered from many ailments and he fulfilled his own prediction that he would not live for forty years. On 4 July 1902, he woke up early, went to the monastery at Belur Math and did meditation for three hours. At 7:00 p.m. in the evening on the same day, Vivekananda went to his room, asking not to be disturbed and he died at 9:20 p.m. while meditating.
He was cremated on a sandalwood funeral pyre on the bank of the Ganga in Belur, opposite where Ramakrishna, his guru was cremated earlier.