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Thoughts on Women - Swami Vivekananda

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[ Scorecard : 981]
Posted On 27 December 2009 at 15:58 Report Abuse

Thoughts on Women - Swami Vivekananda

 

Swami Vivekananda was a monk who at one time saw women as an obstacle. However on realising the highest truth he saw no distinction between s*x and saw in women the presence of the Divine Mother.

 

Swami Vivekananda worked effortlessly to try and uplift the plight of women, in particular Indian Women.

 

These are a collection of his thoughts on women.

 

 

Swami Vivekananda on Women

 

 

"The soul has neither s*x, nor caste nor imperfection."

"The best thermometer to the progress of a nation is its treatment of its women."

 

" There is no chance for the welfare of the world unless the condition of women is improved."

 

"Woman has suffered for aeons, and that has given her infinite patience and infinite preserverance."

 

"The idea of perfect womanhood is perfect independence."

 

"Soul has no s*x, it is neither male nor female. It is only in the body that s*x exists, and the man who desires to reach the spirit cannot at the same time hold s*x distinctions. (CW ,V.4, P.176)

 

It is very difficult to understand why in this country [India] so much difference is made between men and women, whereas the Vedanta declares that one and the same conscious Self is present in all beings. You always criticize the women, but say what have you done for their uplift? Writing down Smritis etc., and binding them by hard rules, the men have turned the women into manufacturing machines! If you do not raise the women, who are living embodiment of the Divine Mother, don’t think that you have any other way to rise.

 

In what scripttures do you find statements that women are not competent for knowledge and devotion? In the period of degeneration, when the priests made the other castes incompetent for the study of the Vedas, they deprived the women also of all their righ ts. Otherwise you will find that in the Vedic or Upanishadic age Maitreyi, Gargi, and other ladies of revered memory have taken places of Rishis through their skill in discussing about Brahman. In an assembly of a thousand Brahmans who were all erudite in the Vedas, Gargi boldly challenged Yagnavalkya in a discussion about Brahman. Since such ideal women were entitled to spiritual knowledge, why shall not the women have same privilege now? What has happened once can certainly happen again. History repeats itself. All nations have attained greatness by paying proper respect to women. That country and that nation which edo not respect women have never become great, nor will ever be in future. The principal reason why your race h! ! ! ! as so much degenerated is that you have no respect for these living images of Shakti. Manu says, "Where women are respected, there the gods delight; and where they are not, there all works and efforts come to naught." There is no hope of rise for that fam ily or country where there is no estimation of women, where they live in sadness. (V7. p.214-15)

 

when people are discussing as to what man and woman can do, always the same mistake is made. They think they show man at his best because he can fight, for instance, and undergo tremendous physical exertion; and this is pitted against the physical weak ness and non-combating quality of woman. This is unjust. Woman is as courageous as man. Each is equally good in his of her way. What man can bring up a child with such patience, endurance, and love as the woman can? The one has developed the power of doin g; the other, the power of suffering. If woman cannot act, neither can man suffer. The whole universe is one of perfect balance. (CW V.2,p.25-26)

 

If you do not allow one to become a lion, he will become a fox. Women are a power, only now it is more evil because man oppresses woman; she is the fox, but when she is no longer oppressed, she will be the lion (CW vol.7,p.22)

 

[Talking to an American audience] I should very much like our women to have your intellectuality, but not if it must be at the cost of purity. I admire you for all that you know, but I dislike the way that you cover what is bad with roses and call it good. Intellectuality is not the highest good. Morality and spirituality are the things for which we strive. Our women are not so learned, but they are more pure.

 

Not until you learn to ignore the question of s*x and to meet on a common ground of common humanity will your woman really develop. All this is the cause of divorce. Your men bow low and offer a chair, but in another breath they offer compliments. They sa y, ’Oh, madam, how beautiful are your eyes!’ What right have they to do this? How dare a man venture so far, and how can you women permit it? Such things develop the less noble side of humanity. They do not tend to nobler ideals.

 

We should not think that we are men and women, but only that we are human beings, born to cherish and to help one another. No sooner are a young man and a young woman left alone than he pays compliments to her, and perhaps before he takes a wife, he has courted two hundred women. Bah! If I belonged to marrying set, I could find a woman to love without all that! (CW Vol. 5, p. 412-413)

 

Men and women in every country, have different ways of understanding and judging things. Men have one angle of vision, women another; men argue from one standpoint, women from another. Men extenuate women and lay the blame on men; while women exonerate men and heap all the heap on women. (CW V.7, p.378)

 

"In the West its ideal is wife, in India in the mother".

 

"In India the mother is the center of the family and our highest ideal. She is to us the representative of God, as God is the mother of the universe. It was a female sage who first found the unity of God, and laid down this doctrine in one of the first hy mns of the Vedas. Our God is both personal and absolute, the absolute is male, the personal, female. And thus it comes that we now say: ’The first manifestation of God is the hand that rocks the cradle’." (CW V.4 p.170)

-

 

 


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CA SURENDRA KUMAR RAKHECHA
Practising CA at Surat

[ Scorecard : 25453]
Posted On 27 December 2009 at 17:12

THE DAY EVERY INDIAN WILL REALIZE HIS OWN CULTURAL VALUES, DIVINE THOUGHTS AS LANDING

MARKS OF LIFE, CHARACTER AS TOP PRIORITY AND READY TO WORK HONESTLY; ONLY THEN ONE

WILL THINK ABOUT  "SOUL."

 

IN PRESENT DAYS; I DON'T THINK THAT  A MAN THINKS  ABOUT  "SOUL" !   

WHY ?   BECAUSE THEY DO NOT KNOW WHY THEY ARE LIVING ? 

WHEN MASS THINKS ABOUT  ENJOYMENT OF LIFE ONLY UPLIFTMENT OF SOCIETY CANNOT BE IMAGINED.

 

VIVEKANAND TOLD " IF TWENTY PERSONS COME TO ME, I WILL CHANGE THE WORLD."  AND DURING HIS LIFETIME HE COULD NOT FIND

EXCEPT BHAGINI NIVEDITA.

 

CA RAKHECHA, SURAT

 

PS : THE DAY WHEN ONE REALIZE "SOUL" IN SELF, HE FEELS "DIVINE" IN HIMSELF. THIS IS "AATM GYAN" RARELY ONE GETS

DURING HIS LIFE.   NO NEED TO GO ANYWHERE THENAFTER !!!

 



Total thanks : 2 times




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[ Scorecard : 981]
Posted On 27 December 2009 at 17:27

Swami Vivekananda's Impact
 


I cannot write about Vivekananda without going into raptures. Reckless in his sacrifice, unceasing in his activity, boundless in his love, profound and versatile in his wisdom, exuberant in his emotions... I can go on for hours and yet fail to do the slightest justice to that great man. He was so great, so profound, so complex. He was a Yogi of the highest spiritual level, in direct communion with the Truth, who consecrated his whole life to the moral and spiritual uplift of humanity.

–Subhas Chandra Bose, one of India's most beloved freedom fighters


Swami Vivekananda will be remembered as one of the most significant figures in the whole history of Indian religion, comparable in importance to such great teachers as Shankara and Ramanuja.
Since the days of the Indian missionaries who traveled in Southeast Asia and China preaching Buddhism and Hinduism more than a thousand years earlier, he was the first Indian religious teacher to make such an impression outside India.

–A. L. Basham, Indologist


I have gone through his works very thoroughly, and after having gone through them, the love that I had for my country became a thousand-fold.

Mahatma Gandhi


The going forth of Vivekananda as the heroic soul destined to take the world between his two hands and change it was the first visible sign that India was awake
…He was a power if ever there was one, a very lion among men. We perceive his influence still working gigantically in something grand, intuitive, upheaving…

–Sri Aurobindo, 20th Century Saint


Where can you find a man like him? Study what he wrote, and learn from his teachings, for if you do, you will gain immense strength. Take advantage of the fountain of wisdom, of Spirit, and of fire that flowed through Vivekananda!

–Jawaharlal Nehru, the first Prime Minister of India


Vivekananda said that there was the power of God in every man, that God wanted to have our service through the poor. This is what I call real gospel. This gospel showed the path of infinite freedom from man's tiny egocentric self beyond the limits of all selfishness. This was no sermon relating to a particular ritual, nor was it a narrow injunction to be imposed upon one's external life. Vivekananda's gospel marked the awakening of man in his fullness
If you want to know India, study Vivekananda.

–Rabindranath Tagore, who Gandhi called Guru-Dev, Divine Teacher


It is an undisputed fact that it was Swami Vivekananda who first held aloft the banner of Hinduism as a challenge against the material science of the West. It was Swami Vivekananda who first took on his shoulders this stupendous task of establishing the glory of Hinduism in different countries across the borders. And he, with his erudition, oratorical power, enthusiasm, and inner force, laid that work upon a solid foundation. Twelve centuries ago Shankara was the only great personality who not only spoke of the purity of our religion... but also brought all this into action. Swami Vivekananda is a person of that stature.

–Bal Gangadhar Tilak


Vivekananda championed the cause of Hinduism in the Parliament of Religions held at Chicago in 1893. There, in the presence of the representatives of all the religions from almost all the countries in the world, the young monk from India expounded the principles of Vedanta and the greatness of Hinduism with such persuasive eloquence that from the very first he captivated the hearts of the vast audience. It would be hardly an exaggeration to say that Swami Vivekananda made a place for Hinduism in the cultural map of the modern world. The civilized nations of the West had hitherto looked down upon Hinduism as a bundle of superstitions. Now, for the first time, they not only greeted with hearty approval the lofty principles of Hinduism as expounded by Vivekananda, but accorded it a very high place in the cultures and civilizations of the world.

–R. C. Majumdar, one of India's greatest historians


I have felt inspired to voice the unanimous and heartfelt gratitude and appreciation of the cultured and broadminded portion of our public, and to give my personal testimony, as the President of the Scientific Section of the Parliament and of all the Conferences connected with the latter, and therefore an eyewitness, to the esteem in which Paramahamsa Vivekananda is held here, the influence that he is wielding, and the good that he is doing...Intense is the astonished admiration which the personal presence and bearing and language of Vivekananda have wrung from a public accustomed to think of Hindus, thanks to the fables and half-truths of the missionaries, as ignorant and degraded "heathen"...Never before has so authoritative a representative of genuine Hinduism, as opposed to the emasculated and Anglicized versions of it so common in these days, been accessible to American inquirers: and it is certain that the American people at large, will, when he is gone, look forward with eagerness to his return...America thanks India for sending him.

–Mr. Merwin-Marie Snell, President of the Scientific Section of the Parliament of Religions, January 30, 1894


A great yogi, a spiritual teacher, a religious leader, a writer, an orator and, above all, the most selfless worker for humanity –– that was Swami Vivekananda. I had the honor of living with this great Swami in India, in England, and in America. I lived and traveled with him day after day and night after night and watched his character for nearly twenty years, and I stand here to assure you that I have not found another like him in these three continents.
As a man, his character was pure and spotless; as a philosopher, he was the greatest of all Eastern and Western philosophers. In him I found the ideal of Karma Yoga, Bhakti Yoga, Raja Yoga and Jnana Yoga; he was like the living example of Vedanta in all its different branches.

–Swami Abhedananda


The paragon of all Unity systems is the Vedanta philosophy of India, and the paragon of Vedantist missionaries was the late Swami Vivekananda who visited our land some years ago. I have just been reading some of Vivekananda's address in England, which I had not seen. The man is simply a wonder for oratorical power...the Swami is an honor to humanity
.

–William James, the"Father of American Psychology"


Please send me the book by Swami Vivekananda. It is more than a pleasure, it is a broadening of the soul.

–Leo Tolstoy


Vivekananda's writings are the modern commentary on the Upanishads in English. What Sri Shankara did a thousand years ago through his Sanskrit commentaries, Swami Vivekananda did in modern times through English in propagating the eternal values of our spiritual lore. His words are live and direct; you feel you are hearing him straight and not simply reading his words. They are music to the soul. They go home straight. His writings and lectures form his greatest monument and the priceless treasure of his legacy. They are the Gospel of the future.
Swami Vivekananda's works will be considered one of the greatest contributions of India to the world at large.

–Swami Siddhinathananda


He traveled on foot all over India, walking barefooted thousands of miles, during many years, teaching and helping the people. In the snowy Himalayas, in the marshy plains of Bengal, amidst pestilence and famine, undergoing privation of every kind, he persevered in his loving ministry, bringing hope and comfort to thousands of disconsolate hearts…
To know Vivekananda was to love him, and to know him well was to revere him.

–S.E. Waldo


His Divine presence spread peace and tranquillity wherever he went. None knew him but to love him…No being lived so low, be he a man or a beast, that Vivekananda would not salute. His was not only an appeal to the poor and lowly, but also to kings and princes and mighty rulers of the earth. Vivekananda shook the world of thought in all its higher lines. Great teachers bowed reverently at his feet, the humble followed reverently to kiss the hem of his garments;
no other single human being was revered more during his life than was Vivekananda.

–Dr. M.H. Logan


Vivekananda’s words are great music, phrases in the style of Beethoven, stirring rhythms like the march of Handel choruses. I cannot touch these sayings of his at thirty years distance without receiving a thrill through my body like an electric shock. The present leaders of India: Gandhi, Aurobindo, and Tagore, have grown, flowered, and born fruit under the double constellation of the Swan (Ramakrishna) and the Eagle (Vivekananda) –– a fact publicly acknowledged by both Gandhi and Aurobindo.

–Romain Rolland, Nobel Prize Laureate


Vivekananda's address before the Parliament of Religions was broad as the heavens above us; embracing the best in all religions, as the ultimate universal religion –– charity to all mankind, good works for the love of God, not for fear of punishment or hope of reward. He is a great favorite at the Parliament, from the grandeur of his sentiments and his appearance as well. If he merely crosses the platform he is applauded, and this marked approval of thousands he accepts in a childlike spirit of gratification, without a tram of conceit. It must be a strange experience, too, for this humble young Brahmin monk, this sudden transition from poverty and self-effacement to aggrandizement.

Boston Evening Transcriptt, September 23, 1893


Swami Vivekananda, the Hindu monk, spoke three times in Des Moines. During his stay in the city Vivekananda met many of the best people in the city, who found their time well spent discussing religious and metaphysical questions with him. But it was woe to the man who undertook to combat the monk on his own ground. His replies came like flaashes of lightning, and the venturesome questioner was sure to be impaled on the Indian's shining intellectual lance. The workings of his mind, so subtle and so brilliant, so well stored and so well trained, dazzled his hearers, but it was always a most interesting study. He said nothing unkind, for his nature would not permit that. Those who came to know him best found him the most gentle and lovable of men, so honest, frank, and unpretending, always grateful for the many kindnesses that were shown him. Vivekananda and his cause found a place in the hearts of all true Christians.

–Iowa State Register, December 3, 1893


The spirit that reigned over the Parliament and dominated the soul of almost every religious representative present was that of universal toleration and universal deliverance, and it ought to be a matter of pride to India, to all Hindus specially, that no one expressed, as the American papers say, this spirit so well as the Hindu representative, Swami Vivekananda. His address struck the keynote of the Parliament of Religions...The spirit of catholicity and toleration which distinguishes Hinduism, forming one of its broadest features, was never before so prominently brought to the notice of the world as it has been by Swami Vivekananda, and we make no doubt that the Swami's address will have an effect on other religions, whose teachers, preachers, and missionaries heard him, and were impressed by his utterances.

– The Indian Mirror, March 21, 1894


Swami Vivekananda was the epitome of all that was great and good in the India of the past. With Shankara's intellect he combined Buddha's heart, Christ's renunciation, and the Prophet of Arabia's spirit of equality, and the result of this holy confluence will in time flood the whole world.
Though he was the most accomplished of men, none possessed greater humility. As to his power of eloquence who shall describe it? Truly has it been remarked, "His words are not mere letters, but Spirit itself!" Every sincere reader will testify to the truth of this statement from his own experience…His life and message have given the necessary impetus for the ushering in of a new era in the history of the civilization of man.

–Swami Madhavmanda


He has been a revelation to Christians...he has made possible for us all a diviner and more nobler practical life. As a religious teacher and an example to all I do not know of his equal...
He has given us in America higher ideas of life than we have ever had before.

–John J. Bagley


Swami Vivekananda’s life and teachings are of inestimable value to the West for an understanding of the mind of Asia. His message is not merely for the hour, but for the modern age; not for a particular nation, but for humanity. The reader will be stirred, for every word he spoke is charged with power. And what he accomplished in short span of his thirty-nine years will nourish humanity for centuries."

–Swami Nikhilananda 


A striking figure, clad in yellow and orange, shining like the sun of India in the midst of the heavy atmosphere of Chicago, a lion head, piercing eyes, mobile lips, movements swift and abrupt –– such was my first impression of Swami Vivekananda, as I met him in one of the rooms set apart for the use of the delegates to the Parliament of Religions. Off the platform, his figure was instinct with pride of country, pride of race –– the representative of the oldest of living religions, surrounded by curious gazers of nearly the youngest religion. India was not to be shamed before the hurrying arrogant West by this her envoy and her son. He brought her message, he spoke in her name, and the herald remembered the dignity of the royal land whence he came. Purposeful, virile, strong, he stood out, a man among men, able to hold his own. 

On the platform another side came out. The dignity and the inborn sense of worth and power still were there, but all was subdued to the exquisite beauty of the spiritual message which he had brought, to the sublimity of that matchless truth of the East which is the heart and the life of India, the wondrous teaching of the Self. Enraptured, the huge multitude hung upon his words; not a syllable must be lost, not a cadence missed! "That man, a heathen!" said one, as he came out of the great hall, "and we send missionaries to his people! It would be more fitting that they should send missionaries to us!"

-Dr. Annie Besant, who helped popularize the movement of Theosophy, with her impression of the Swami at the Parliament.




CA SURENDRA KUMAR RAKHECHA
Practising CA at Surat

[ Scorecard : 25453]
Posted On 27 December 2009 at 17:41

I RESPECT SINCE MY CHILDHOOD THIS GREAT SAINT.

BUT RIGHT NOW HOW MANY INDIANS ARE THERE WHO HAVE "REALLY VALUED" HIS THOUGHTS ? 

DO YOU THINK THAT PRESENT GENERATION IS "VALUING" INDIAN CULTURE, SPECIALLY WHO ARE IN HIGHER EDUCATION  ?

MOST OF THEM TAKE IT AS OUTDATED !   

IS THIS  E-D-U-C-A-T-I-O-N ?  

NO DOUBT THEY ARE INTELLIGENT BUT REGARDING MORAL ??????  REGARDING HARD WORK ????? 

ALTHOUGH VERY FEW ARE DOING EXCELLENTLY AND TOUCHING HEIGHTS SO SOON THAT WE CANNOT  IMAGINE.

WHY MOST OF INDIANS PREFER AN OFFER CONTAINING SOMETHING  "FREE." 

WHETHER AN HONEST PERSON WILL ACCEPT ANYTHING FREE ??

SO MANY PERSONS LISTEN GOOD WORDS; BUT REGARDING APPLICATION THEREOF ????

THE MATTER I COMMENTED  IS NOT THAT "VIVEKANAND" WAS NOT GREAT, BUT TOWARDS THE

"UNCONSCIOUSNESS" OF INDIANS !

THAT IS WHY ONLY ONE WAS THERE TO FOLLOW  VIVEKANAND !

A N D  S H E   W A S  A  W O M A N  !!

A N D  S H E   W A S  N O T  A N   I N D I A N    !!!

 

 ca rakhecha,suat

 

 



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