Swami Vivekananda, a key figure in the introduction of the Indian philosophies of Vedanta and Yoga to the Western world. In this article, we will look at some of the Swami Vivekananda quotes in Sanskrit used in various speeches and letters. Swami Vivekananda’s birthday is also celebrated as National Youth Day here in India.
Right from childhood, Swami Vivekananda was inclined towards spirituality. He was influenced by his guru, Ramakrishna, the principal teaching he received from Ramakrishna was 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, Swami Vivekananda toured the Indian subcontinent extensively and acquired first-hand knowledge of the conditions prevailing in British India. He later traveled to the United States, representing India at the 1893 Parliament of the World’s Religions.
Swami Vivekananda conducted hundreds of public and private lectures and classes, disseminating tenets of Hindu philosophy in the United States, England, and Europe. The lectures and public speeches he gave were mostly impromptu and had very little preparation. Most of his published work is compiled from his speeches.
Today we are trying to make a collage of the Sanskrit texts that Swami Vivekananda quoted during his speeches and letters, we hope you’ll like them and if you do, please share.
उतिष्ठत। जाग्रत। प्राप्य वरान्निबोधत।
utiṣṭhata। jāgrata। prāpya varānnibodhata।
Arise. Awake. And stop not till the goal is reached.
उठो। जागो। और तब तक नहीं रुकनाजब तक कि लक्ष्य हासिल न हो।
Following post is taken from Swami’s book Atmanubhuti (Self-Realization), the book explains 6 ways of achieving self-realization. We have tried to create a visual post for better understanding.
The concentration called the right knowledge is that which is followed by reasoning, discrimination bliss, unqualified egoism.
Source – Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras 1.17
This is from Swami Vivekananda’s commentary on Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras, his comments go as
Vitarka means question; Savitarka, with question, questioning the elements, as it were, that they may give their truths and their powers to the man who meditates upon them. There is no liberation in getting powers. It is a worldly search after enjoyments, and there is no enjoyment in this life; all search for enjoyment is vain; this is the old, old lesson which man finds so hard to learn. When he does learn it, he gets out of the universe and becomes free. The possession of what are called occult powers is only intensifying the world, and in the end, intensifying suffering. Though as a scientist Patanjali is bound to point out the possibilities of this science, he never misses an opportunity to warn us against these powers.
अविद्यायामन्तरे वर्तमानाः स्वयं धीराः पण्डितम्मन्यमानाः।
दन्दम्यमाणाः परियन्ति मूढा अन्धेनेव नीयमाना यथान्धाः॥
avidyāyāmantare vartamānāḥ svayaṃ dhīrāḥ paṇḍitammanyamānāḥ।
dandamyamāṇāḥ pariyanti mūḍhā andheneva nīyamānā yathāndhāḥ॥
Fools dwelling in darkness, wise in their own conceit, and puffed up with vain knowledge, go round and round staggering to and fro, like blind men led by the blind.
Source – Katha Upanishad 1.2.5
The world is full of these. Every one wants to be a teacher, every beggar wants to make a gift of a million dollars!
Just as these beggars are ridiculous, so are these teachers.
दुर्लभं त्रयमेवैतत् देवानुग्रहहेतुकम्।
मनुष्यत्वं मुमुक्षुत्वं महापुरुषसंश्रयः॥
durlabhaṃ trayamevaitat devānugrahahetukam।
manuṣyatvaṃ mumukṣutvaṃ mahāpuruṣasaṃśrayaḥ॥
These three are difficult to obtain in this world and depend on the mercy of the gods, – the human birth, the desire for salvation, and the company of the great-souled ones.
Source – Bhashyakara
ध्यायतो विषयान्पुंसः सङगस्तेषुपजायते।
सङगत्संजायते कामः कामात्क्रोधोऽभिजायते॥
dhyāyato viṣayānpuṃsaḥ saṅagasteṣupajāyate।
saṅagatsaṃjāyate kāmaḥ kāmātkrodho’bhijāyate॥
Thinking of objects, attachment to them is formed in a man. From attachment longing, and from longing anger grows.
Source – Bhagavad Gita
Let such irrelevant things alone. To return to our subject: After all, one wonders at Professor Max Müller’s knowledge of the social customs and codes of law, as well as the contemporaneous occurrences in the various provinces of present-day India; this is borne out by our own personal experiences.
Save yourself by yourself.
Source – Swami Vivekananda
Swami comments on at the situation of the difference between east and west of the time –
The West wants every bit of spirituality through social improvement. The East wants every bit of social power through
spirituality. Thus it was that the modern reformers saw no way to reform but by first crushing out the religion of India. They tried, and they failed. Why? Because few of them ever studied their own religion, and not one ever underwent the training necessary to understand the Mother of all religions.
I claim that no destruction of religion is necessary to improve the Hindu society and that this state of society exists not on account of religion, but because religion has not been applied to society as it should have been. This I am ready to prove from our old books, every word of it. This is what I teach, and this is what we must struggle all our lives to carry out. But it will take time, a long time to study. Have patience and work.
आत्मानं सततं रक्षेत्।
ātmānaṃ satataṃ rakṣet।
One must save oneself under any circumstances.
Source – Swami Vivekananda in a letter to Sj. Balaram Bose (5th January 1890)
Swami wrote a letter to Sj. Balaram Bose on January 5, 1980. Part of the letter –
“Lord have mercy”, is all right, but He helps him who helps himself. If you simply try to save your purse, will the Lord arrange the change for you by drawing on His ancestral capital? If you think you have so much reliance on the Lord, don’t call in the doctor, please. . . .
If that does not suit you, you should go to Varanasi. I would have already left this place, but the local gentlemen would not give me leave to depart! . . . But let me repeat once more, if change is actually decided upon, please do not hesitate out of
miserliness. That would be suicide. And not even God can save a suicide.
Please convey my compliments to Tulasi Babu and the rest.
If you know more quotes from Swami Vivekananda in Sanskrit, then please share with us through comment section. That quotes will be added.