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meditation

 


SWAMI SRI
VIVEKANANDA

 

     

Vivekananda was one of the most notable spiritual
speakers of the recent times with followers all around the world and his
famous speech in Chicago at the Parliament Of Religions may be considered to
be one of the best ones of all times by an indian spiritual taecher with a
practical approach.

 Swami
Vivekananda was a follower of Sri Ramakrishna Paramahamsa ,who was a
highly evolved spiritual Guru of recent times and his guidance is
supposed to have guided Vivekananda for his
spiritual journey from India
to The United States. Vivekananda, after his travels all over the world,
could collect the money required for the initial expense of establishing
the Rama Krishna Mission, which is now one of the premier spiritual
institutions in India and abroad, which is actively involved in the
categorizing and publishing of ancient scriptures of India and making it
affordably available to the Public; thus trying to bridge the widening
gap between the  totally ignorant younger generation of India, and
the sacred collection of manuscripts that their ancestors have
especially written for this present generation in this time of mixing of Guna’s or Virtues.

 Given below are excerpts from the famous speech of Vivekananda at the
parliament of Religions, Chicago in 1893.

 


ADDRESSES AT THE PARLIAMENT
OF
RELIGIONS

RESPONSE TO WELCOME
Chicago, September 11, 1893


 “Sisters
and Brothers of America,


  It fills my heart with joy unspeakable
to rise in response to the warm and cordial welcome which you have given
us. I thank you in the name of the most ancient order of monks in the
world; I thank you in the name of the mother of religions, and I thank
you in the name of millions and millions of Hindu people of all classes
and sects.


 My thanks, also, to some of the speakers
on this platform who, referring to the delegates from the Orient, have
told you that these men from far-off nations may well claim the honor of
bearing to different lands the idea of toleration. I am proud to belong
to a religion which has taught the world both tolerance and universal
acceptance. We believe not only in universal toleration, but we accept
all religions as true. I am proud to belong to a nation which has
sheltered the persecuted and the refugees of all religions and all
nations of the earth. I am proud to tell you that we have gathered in
our bosom the purest remnant of the Israelites, who came to Southern
India and took refuge with us in the very year in which their holy
temple was shattered to pieces by Roman tyranny. I am proud to belong to
the religion which has sheltered and is still fostering the remnant of
the grand Zoroastrian nation. I will quote to you, brethren, a few lines
from a hymn which I remember to have repeated from my earliest boyhood,
which is every day repeated by millions of human beings: “As the
different streams having their sources in different paths which men take
through different tendencies, various though they appear, crooked or
straight, all

lead to Thee.”


 The present convention, which is one of
the most august assemblies ever held, is in itself a vindication, a
declaration to the world of the wonderful doctrine preached in the
Gita
: “Whosoever comes to Me, through whatsoever form, I reach him;
all men are struggling through paths which in the end lead to me.”
Sectarianism, bigotry, and its horrible descendant, fanaticism, have
long possessed this beautiful earth. They have filled the earth with
violence, drenched it often and often with human blood, destroyed
civilization and sent whole nations to despair. Had it not been for
these horrible demons, human society would be far more advanced than it
is now. But their time is come; and I fervently hope that the bell that
tolled this morning in honor of this convention may be the death-knell
of all fanaticism, of all persecutions with the sword or with the pen,
and of all uncharitable feelings between persons wending their way to
the same goal.

 


ADDRESS AT THE FINAL SESSION


 Chicago, September 27,
1893


 “The World’s Parliament of Religions has
become an accomplished fact, and the merciful Father has helped those
who labored to bring it into existence, and crowned with success their
most unselfish labor.


 My thanks to those noble souls whose
large hearts and love of truth first dreamed this wonderful dream and
then realized it. My thanks to the shower of liberal sentiments that has
overflowed this platform. My thanks to this enlightened audience for
their uniform kindness to me and for their appreciation of every thought
that tends to smooth the friction of religions. A few jarring notes were
heard from time to time in this harmony. My special thanks to them, for
they have, by their striking contrast, made general harmony the sweeter.


 Much has been said of the common ground
of religious unity. I am not going just now to venture my own theory.
But if any one here hopes that this unity will come by the triumph of
any one of the religions and the destruction of the others, to him I
say, “Brother, yours is an impossible hope.” Do I wish that the
Christian would become Hindu? God forbid. Do I wish that the Hindu or
Buddhist would become Christian? God forbid.


 The seed is put in the ground, and earth
and air and water are placed around it. Does the seed become the earth,
or the air, or the water? No. It becomes a plant. It develops after the
law of its own growth, assimilates the air, the earth, and the water,
converts them into plant substance, and grows into a plant.


 Similar is the case with religion. The
Christian is not to become a Hindu or a Buddhist, nor a Hindu or a
Buddhist to become a Christian. But each must assimilate the spirit of
the others and yet preserve his individuality and grow according to his
own law of growth.


 If the Parliament of Religions has shown
anything to the world, it is this: It has proved to the world that
holiness, purity and charity are not the exclusive possessions of any
church in the world, and that every system has produced men and women of
the most exalted character. In the face of this evidence, if anybody
dreams of the exclusive survival of his own religion and the destruction
of the others, I pity him from the bottom of my heart, and point out to
him that upon the banner of every religion will soon be written in spite
of resistance: “Help and not fight,” “Assimilation and not Destruction,”
“Harmony and Peace and not Dissension.”

 

 

 

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