Wednesday, 19 October 2016

Do you love God, then know this True Lover of God.

“Swami Vivekananda’s Love and strong faith in God” – from his letters.

To download the pdf, kindly visit:

Through these letters, we learn about the love and faith Swami Vivekananda had on God. These are the extracts from the letters written by him from 4th Feb., 1889. up to 31st August, 1894.

4th Feb., 1889.
For some reason I had been feeling today agitated and cramped in my mind, when your letter of invitation to the heavenly city of Varanasi reached me. I accept it as the call of Vishveshvara. (The Lord of the Universe, or Shiva, as installed in the leading temple of Varanasi or Kashi.)
22nd February, 1889.
Recovering my health after a few days here, I entertain the hope of visiting you there. The will of Vishweshwara, the Lord of the universe, will prevail — whatever that may be. 
17th Aug., 1889.
You have expressed embarrassment in your last favour for being addressed reverentially. But the blame attaches not to me but to your own excellent qualities. I wrote in one letter before that from the way I feel attracted by your lofty virtues, it seems we had some affinity from previous births. I make no distinction as to householder or Sannyasin in this, that for all time my head shall bend low in reverence wherever I see greatness, broadness of heart, and holiness — Shântih! Shântih! Shântih! My prayer is that among the many people embracing Sannyâsa nowadays, greedy of honour, posing renunciation for the sake of a living, and fallen off from the ideal on both sides, may one in a lakh at least become high-souled like you! To you my Brahmin fellow-disciples who have heard of your noble virtues tender their best prostrations. 
About one amongst my several questions to which you sent your replies, my wrong idea is corrected. For this I shall remain indebted to you for ever. Another of these questions was: Whether Acharya Shankara gives any conclusion regarding caste based on Gunas as mentioned in Puranâs like the Mahabharata. If he does, where is it to be found? I have no doubt that according to the ancient view in this country, caste was hereditary, and it cannot also be doubted that sometimes the Shudras used to be oppressed more than the helots among the Spartans and the negroes among the Americans! As for myself, I have no partiality for any party in this caste question, because I know it is a social law and is based on diversity of Guna and Karma. It also means grave harm if one bent on going beyond Guna and Karma cherishes in mind any caste distinctions. In these matters, I have got some settled ideas through the grace of my Guru but, if I come to know of your views, I may just confirm some points or rectify others in them. One doesn't have honey dripping unless one pokes at the hive — so I shall put you some more questions; and looking upon me as ignorant and as a boy, please give proper replies without taking any offence.
 1. Is the Mukti, which the Vedanta-Sutras speaks of, one and the same with the Nirvana of the Avadhuta-Gitâ and other texts? 
2. What is really meant by Nirvana if, according to the aphorism, "Without the function of creating etc." (ibid., IV. iv. 7), none can attain to the fullest Godhead? 
3. Chaitanya-deva is said to have told Sârvabhauma at Puri, "I understand the Sutras (aphorisms) of Vyasa, they are dualistic; but the commentator makes them, monistic, which I don't understand." Is this true? Tradition says, Chaitanya-deva had a dispute with Prakashananda Sarasvati on the point, and Chaitanya-deva won. One commentary by Chaitanya-deva was rumoured to have been existing in Prakashananda's Math. 
4. In the Tantra, Acharya Shankara has been called a crypto-Buddhist; views expressed in Prajnâparamitâ, the Buddhist Mâhâyana book, perfectly tally with the Vedantic views propounded by the Acharya. The author of Panchadashi also says, "What we call Brahman is the same truth as the Shunya of the Buddhist." What does all this mean? 
5. Why has no foundation for the authority of the Vedas been adduced in the Vedanta-Sutras? First, it has been said that the Vedas are the authority for the existence of God, and then it has been argued that the authority for the Vedas is the text: "It is the breath of God." Now, is this statement not vitiated by what in Western logic is called an argument in a circle? 
6. The Vedanta requires of us faith, for conclusiveness cannot be reached by mere argumentation. Then why, has the slightest flaw, detected in the position of the schools of Sânkhya and Nyâya, been overwhelmed with a fusillade of dialectics? In whom, moreover, are we to put our faith? Everybody seems to be mad over establishing his own view; if, according to Vyasa, even the great Muni Kapila, "the greatest among perfected souls", is himself deeply involved in error, then who would say that Vyasa may not be so involved in a greater measure? Did Kapila fail to understand the Vedas? 
7. According to the Nyaya, "Shabda or Veda (the criterion of truth), is the word of those who have realised the highest"; so the Rishis as such are omniscient. Then how are they proved, according to the Surya-siddhânta, to be ignorant of such simple astronomical truths? How can we accept their intelligence as the refuge to ferry us across the ocean of transmigratory existence, seeing that they speak of the earth as triangular, of the serpent Vâsuki as the support of the earth and so on? 
8. If in His acts of creation God is dependent on good and evil Karmas, then what does it avail us to worship Him? There is a fine song of Nareshchandra, where occurs the following: "If what lies in one's destiny is to happen anyhow, O Mother, then what good all this invoking by the holy name of Durgâ?" 
9. True, it is improper to hold many texts on the same subject to be contradicted by one or two. But why then are the long-continued customs of Madhuparka and the like repealed by one or two such texts as, "The horse sacrifice, the cow sacrifice, Sannyasa, meat-offerings in Shrâddha", etc.? If the Vedas are eternal, then what are the meaning and justification of such specifications as "this rule of Dharma is for the age of Dvâpara," "this for the age of Kali", and so forth? 
10. The same God who gives out the Vedas becomes Buddha again to annul them; which of these dispensations is to be obeyed? Which of these remains authoritative, the earlier or the later one? 
11. The Tantra says, in the Kali-Yuga the Veda-Mantras are futile. So which behest of God, the Shiva, is to be followed? 
12. Vyasa makes out in the Vedanta-Sutras that it is wrong to worship the tetrad of divine manifestation, Vâsudeva, Sankarshana, etc., and again that very Vyasa expatiates on the great merits of that worship in the Bhâgavata! Is this Vyasa a madman? 
I have many doubts besides these, and, hoping to have them dispelled from my mind through your kindness, I shall lay them before you in future. Such questions cannot be all set forth except in a personal interview; neither can as much satisfaction be obtained as one expects to. So I have a mind to lay before you all these facts when presenting myself to you, which I expect will be very soon, by the grace of the Guru. 
I have heard it said that without inner progress in the practice of religion, no true conclusion can be reached concerning these matters, simply by means of reasoning; but satisfaction, at least to some extent, seems to be necessary at the outset. 
Yours etc., 
February, 1890.
The Lord Buddha is my Ishta — my God. He preached no theory about Godhead — he was himself God, I fully believe it. But no one has the power to put a limit to God's infinite glory. No, not even God Himself has the power to make Himself limited.
3rd March, 1890.
PS. To no big person am I going any longer — 
"Remain, O mind, within yourself, go not to anybody else's door; whatever you seek, you shall obtain sitting at your ease, only seek for it in the privacy of your heart. There is the supreme Treasure, the philosophers' stone and He can give whatever you ask for; for countless gems, O mind, lie strewn about the portals of His abode. He is the wishing-stone that confers boons at the mere thought." Thus says the poet Kamalâkânta. 
15th March, 1890.
I am leaving this place tomorrow. . . . My countless salutations to Mother. You all bless me that I may have sameness of vision, that after avoiding the bondages which one is heir to by one's very birth, I may not again get stuck in self-imposed bondages. If there be any Doer of good and if He have the power and the opportunity, may He vouchsafe the highest blessings unto you all — this is my constant prayer.  
Khartabad, Hyderabad,
11th February, 1893.
man learns as he lives, and experience is the greatest teacher in the world.
"Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven, for Thine is the glory and the kingdom for ever and ever."
28th April, 1893.
what more shall I wish for you, my dear Diwanji Saheb, but that the Lord would be your all in all in your well-merited, well-applauded and universally respected latter end of a life which was ever holy, good, and devoted to the service of so many of the sons and daughters of the great Father of Mercies. Amen! 
22nd May, 1893.
May the blows you have received draw you closer to that Being who is the only one to be loved here and hereafter, so that you may realise Him in everything past, present, and future, and find everything present or lost in Him and Him alone. Amen! 
Metcalf, Mass.
20th August, 1893
Know, then, that this is the land of Christians, and any other influence than that is almost zero. Nor do I care a bit for the enmity of any -----ists in the world. I am here amongst the children of the Son of Mary, and the Lord Jesus will help me. They like much the broad views of Hinduism and my love for the Prophet of Nazareth. I tell them that I preach nothing against the Great One of Galilee. I only ask the Christians to take in the Great Ones of Ind along with the Lord Jesus, and they appreciate it.
 . . Look sharp, my boy, take courage. We are destined by the Lord to do great things in India. Have faith. We will do. We, the poor and the despised, who really feel, and not those. . . .
Yesterday Mrs. Johnson, the lady superintendent of the women's prison, was here. They don't call it prison but reformatory here. It is the grandest thing I have seen in America. How the inmates are benevolently treated, how they are reformed and sent back as useful members of society; how grand, how beautiful, you must see to believe! 
The Lord is great. I know He will help me. I may perish of cold or hunger in this land, but I bequeath to you, young men, this sympathy, this struggle for the poor, the ignorant, the oppressed. Go now this minute to the temple of Parthasarathi,  and before Him who was friend to the poor and lowly cowherds of Gokula, who never shrank to embrace the Pariah Guhaka, who accepted the invitation of a prostitute in preference to that of nobles and saved her in His incarnation as Buddha--yea, down on your faces before Him, and make a great sacrifice, the sacrifice of a whole life for them, for whom He comes from time to time, whom He loves above all, the poor, the lowly, the oppressed. Vow, then, to devote your whole lives to the cause of the redemption of these three hundred millions, going down and down every day.
It is not the work of a day, and the path is full of the most deadly thorns. But Parthasarathi is ready to be our Sarathi--we know that. And in His name and with eternal faith in Him, set fire to the mountain of misery that has been heaped upon India for ages--and it shall be burned down. Come then, look it in the face, brethren, it is a grand task, and we are so low. But we are the sons of Light and children of God. Glory unto the Lord, we will succeed. 
Hundreds will fall in the struggle, hundreds will be ready to take it up. I may die here unsuccessful, another will take up the task. You know the disease, you know the remedy, only have faith. Do not look up to the so-called rich and great; do not care for the heartless intellectual writers, and their cold-blooded newspaper articles. Faith, sympathy--fiery faith and fiery sympathy! Life is nothing, death is nothing, hunger nothing, cold nothing. Glory unto the Lord--march on, the Lord is our General. Do not look back to see who falls--forward--onward! Thus and thus we shall go on, brethren. One falls, and another takes up the work.
Salem (USA)
30th Aug., 1893
Here are a few lines written as an attempt at poetry. Hoping your love will pardon this infliction.
Ever your friend,
O'er hill and dale and mountain range,
In temple, church, and mosque,
In Vedas, Bible, Al Koran
I had searched for Thee in vain.
Like a child in the wildest forest lost 
I have cried and cried alone,
"Where art Thou gone, my God, my love?"
The echo answered, "gone."
And days and nights and years then passed--
A fire was in the brain;
I knew not when day changed in night,
The heart seemed rent in twain.
I laid me down on Ganga's shore,
Exposed to sun and rain;
With burning tears I laid the dust
And wailed with waters' roar.
I called on all the holy names
Of every clime and creed,
"Show me the way, in mercy, ye
Great ones who have reached the goal".
Years then passed in bitter cry,
Each moment seemed an age,
Till one day midst my cries and groans
Some one seemed calling me.
A gentle soft and soothing voice
That said "my son", "my son",
That seemed to thrill in unison
With all the chords of my soul.
I stood on my feet and tried to find
The place the voice came from;
I searched and searched and turned to see
Round me, before, behind.
Again, again it seemed to speak--
The voice divine to me.
In rapture all my soul was hushed,
Entranced, enthralled in bliss.
A flash illumined all my soul;
The heart of my heart opened wide.
O joy, O bliss, what do I find!
My love, my love, you are here,
And you are here, my love, my all!
And I was searching thee!
From all eternity you were there
Enthroned in majesty!
From that day forth, where'er I roam,
I feel Him standing by
O'er hill and dale, high mount and vale,
Far far away and high.
The moon's soft light, the stars so bright,
The glorious orb of day,
He shines in them; His beauty--might--
Reflected lights are they.
The majestic morn, the melting eve,
The boundless billowy sea,
In nature's beauty, songs of birds,
I see through them--it is He.
When dire calamity seizes me,
The heart seems weak and faint,
All nature seems to crush me down,
With laws that never bend.
Meseems I hear Thee whispering sweet
My love, "I am near", "I am near".
My heart gets strong. With Thee, my love,
A thousand deaths no fear.
Thou speakest in the mother's lay
That shuts the baby's eye;
When innocent children laugh and play
I see Thee standing by.
When holy friendship shakes the hand,
He stands between them too;
He pours the nectar in mother's kiss
And the baby's sweet "mama".
Thou wert my God with prophets old;
All creeds do come from Thee;
The Vedas, Bible, and Koran bold
Sing Thee in harmony.
"Thou art", "Thou art" the Soul of souls
In the rushing stream of life.
"Om tat Sat om."  Thou art my God.
My love, I am thine, I am thine.
2nd October, 1893
Dear brother, I was so so afraid to stand before that great assembly of fine speakers and thinkers from all over the world and speak; but the Lord gave me strength, and I almost every day heroically (?) faced the platform and the audience. If I have done well, He gave me the strength for it;  
And oh! everybody is so kind here to me who am nothing that it is beyond my power of expression. Glory unto Him in the highest in whose sight the poor ignorant monk from India is the same as the learned divines of this mighty land. And how the Lord is helping me every day of my life, brother I sometimes wish for a life of [a] million million ages to serve Him through the work, dressed in rags and fed by charity.
May He make us all more and more pure and holy so that we may live a perfect spiritual life even before throwing off this earthly body.
I am now going to be reconciled to my life here. All my life I have been taking every circumstance as coming from Him and calmly adapting myself to it. At first in America I was almost out of my water. I was afraid I would have to give up the accustomed way of being guided by the Lord and cater for myself and what a horrid piece of mischief and ingratitude was that. I now clearly see that He who was guiding me on the snow tops of the Himalayas and the burning plains of India is here to help me and guide me. Glory unto Him in the highest. So I have calmly fallen into my old ways. Somebody or other gives me a shelter and food, somebody or other comes to ask me to speak about Him, and I know He sends them and mine is to obey. And then He is supplying my necessities, and His will be done !
"He who rests [in] Me and gives up all other self assertion and struggles I carry to him whatever he needs" (Gita).
So it is in Asia. So in Europe. So in America. So in the deserts of India. So in the rush of business in America. For is He not here also? And if He does not, I only would take for granted that He wants that I should lay aside this three minutes' body of clay and hope to lay it down gladly.
We may or may not meet, brother. He knows. You are great, learned, and holy. I dare not preach to you or your wife; but to your children I quote these passages from the Vedas 
"The four Vedas, sciences, languages, philosophy, and all other learnings are only ornamental. The real learning, the true knowledge is that which enables us to reach Him who is unchangeable in His love."
"How real, how tangible, how visible is He through whom the skin touches, the eyes see, and the world gets its reality!"
"Hearing Him nothing remains to be heard,
Seeing Him nothing remains to be seen,
Attaining Him nothing remains to be attained."
"He is the eye of our eyes, the ear of our ears, the Soul of our souls."
He is nearer to you, my dears, than even your father and mother. You are innocent and pure as flowers. Remain so, and He will reveal Himself unto you. Dear Austin, when you are playing, there is another playmate playing with you who loves you more than anybody else; and Oh, He is so full of fun. He is always playing sometimes with great big balls which we call the sun and earth, sometimes with little children like you and laughing and playing with you. How funny it would be to see Him and play with Him! My dear, think of it.
"He who gets hold of the One in this world of many the one constant existence in a world of flitting shadows the one life in a world of death he alone crosses this sea of misery and struggle. None else, none else" (Vedas).
"He who is the Brahman of the Vedantins, Ishvara of the Naiyayikas, Purusha of the Sankhyas, cause of the Mimamsakas, law of the Buddhists, absolute zero of the Atheists, and love infinite unto those that love, may [He] take us all under His merciful protection": Udayanacharya a great philosopher of the Nyaya or Dualistic school. And this is the Benediction pronounced at the very beginning of his wonderful book Kusumanjali (A handful of flowers), in which he attempts to establish the existence of a personal creator and moral ruler of infinite love independently of revelation.
10th October, 1893.
He who has brought me hither and has not left me yet will not leave me ever I am here. You will be glad to know that I am doing well and expect to do very well in the way of getting money.
2nd November, 1893
I was out of pocket at that time. Since then the Lord sent me friends. ……
I addressed the assembly as "Sisters and Brothers of America", a deafening applause of two minutes followed, and then I proceeded; and when it was finished, I sat down, almost exhausted with emotion. The next day all the papers announced that my speech was the hit of the day, and I became known to the whole of America. Truly has it been said by the great commentator Shridhara--mUk< kraeit vacal< --Who maketh the dumb a fluent speaker." His name be praised! From that day I became a celebrity, and the day I read my paper of Hinduism, the hall was packed as it had never been before.
I must remain in this country at least through the winter, and then go to Europe. The Lord will provide everything for me. You need not disturb yourself about it. I cannot express my gratitude for your love.Day by day I am feeling that the Lord is with me, and I am trying to follow His direction. His will be done. . . . We will do great things for the world, and that for the sake of doing good and not for name and fame.
"Ours not to reason why, ours but to do and die." Be of good cheer and believe that we are selected by the Lord to do great things, and we will do them. Hold yourself in readiness, i.e. be pure and holy, and love for love's sake. Love the poor, the miserable, the down-trodden, and the Lord will bless you. 
Think not that you are poor; money is not power, but goodness, holiness. Come and see how it is so all over the world.
24th January, 1894.
Our modern reformers are very busy about widow remarriage. Of course, I am a sympathiser in every reform, but the fate of a nation does not depend upon the number of husbands their widows get, but upon the condition of the masses. Can you raise them? Can you give them back their lost individuality without making them lose their innate spiritual nature? Can you become an occidental of occidentals in your spirit of equality, freedom, work, and energy, and at the same time a Hindu to the very backbone in religious culture and instincts? This is to be done and we will do it. You are all born to do it. Have faith in yourselves, great convictions are the mothers of great deeds. Onward for ever! Sympathy for the poor, the downtrodden, even unto death — this is our motto. 
Onward, brave lads!
29th January, 1894.
With the Lord's help they will do things for which the whole world will bless them for ages. So on the one hand, my vision of the future of Indian religion and that of the whole world, my love for the millions of beings sinking down and down for ages with nobody to help them, nay, nobody with even a thought for them; on the other hand, making those who are nearest and dearest to me miserable; I choose the former. "Lord will do the rest." He is with me, I am sure of that if of anything. So long as I am sincere, nothing can resist me, because He will be my help. 
12th March, 1894.
I am fed up.I would take rest in Boston or New York if the Lord permits.
16 March 1894
I am dreaming just now and philosophising upon that work fever which was upon me. It is all nonsense. I am nothing, the world is nothing, the Lord alone is the only worker. We are simply tools in His hands etc., etc., etc.
17th March, 1894.
She knows everything about the Yogis and is herself much advanced in practice!! 
"Thy ways are beyond searching out." Lord bless her — so innocent, holy, and pure! This is the grandest recompense in my terribly toilsome, miserable life — the finding of holy happy faces like you from time to time. The great Buddhist prayer is, "I bow down to all holy men on earth". I feel the real meaning of this prayer whenever I see a face upon which the finger of the Lord has written in unmistakable letters "mine". May you all be happy, blessed, good and pure as you are for ever and ever. May your feet never touch the mud and dirt of this terrible world. May you live and pass away like flowers as you are born — is the constant prayer of your brother.
18th March, 1894.
Nowhere in the world are women like those of this country. How pure, independent, self-relying, and kindhearted! It is the women who are the life and soul of this country. All learning and culture are centred in them. The saying,
— Who is the Goddess of Fortune Herself in the families of the meritorious" (Chandi) — holds good in this country, while that other, "Description:
— The Goddess of ill luck in the homes of the sinful" (ibid.) — applies to ours. Just think on this. Great God! I am struck dumb with wonderment at seeing the women of America.Description:"— Thou art the Goddess of Fortune, Thou art the supreme Goddess, Thou art Modesty" (ibid.),Description:
— The Goddess who resides in all beings as Power" (ibid.) — all this holds good here. There are thousands of women here whose minds are as pure and white as the snow of this country. And look at our girls, becoming mothers below their teens!! Good Lord! I now see it all. Brother,Description:
" — The gods are pleased where the women are held in esteem" — says the old Manu. We are horrible sinners, and our degradation is due to our calling women "despicable worms", "gateways to hell", and so forth. Goodness gracious! There is all the difference between heaven and hell!!Description:
" — He adjudges gifts according to the merits of the case" (Isha, 8). Is the Lord to be hoodwinked by idle talk? The Lord has said,Description:
" — Thou art the woman, Thou art the man, Thou art the boy and the girl as well." (Shvetâshvatara Upa.) And we on our part are crying,Description:
" — Be off, thou outcast!"
Description:" etc. — Who has made the bewitching woman?" My brother, what experiences I have had in the South, of the upper classes torturing the lower! What Bacchanalian orgies within the temples! Is it a religion that fails to remove the misery of the poor and turn men into gods! Do you think our religion is worth the name? Ours is only Don't touchism, only "Touch me not", "Touch me not." Good heavens! A country, the big leaders of which have for the last two thousand years been only discussing whether to take food with the right hand or the left, whether to take water from the right-hand side or from the left, ... if such a country does not go to ruin, what other will?
Description:" — Time keeps wide awake when all else sleeps. Time is invincible indeed!" He knows it; who is there to throw dust in His eyes, my friend?
New York
9th April, 1894
My brother, no good thing can be done without obstruction. It is only those who persevere to the end that succeed. . . . I believe that the Satya Yuga (Golden Age) will come when there will be one caste, one Veda, and peace and harmony. This idea of Satya Yuga is what would revivify India. Believe it. 
26th April, 1894.
I have an old mother. She has suffered much all her life and in the midst of all she could bear to give me up for the service of God and man; but to have given up the most beloved of her children — her hope — to live a beastly immoral life in a far distant country, as Mazoomdar was telling in Calcutta, would have simply killed her. But the Lord is great, none can injure His children.
The cat is out of the bag — without my seeking at all. And who do you think is the editor of one of our leading papers which praise me so much and thank God that I came to America to represent Hinduism? Mazoomdar's cousin!! — Poor Mazoomdar — he has injured his cause by telling lies through jealousy. Lord knows I never attempted any defence.
14 May 1894
Oh, they are so, so dry--even girls talk dry metaphysics. Here is like our Benares where all is dry, dry metaphysics!! Nobody here understands "my Beloved". Religion to these people is reason, and horribly stony at that. I do not care for anybody who cannot love my "Beloved". Do not tell it to Miss Howe--she may be offended.
Any amount of enmity to certain persons cannot efface the good works of a life. And then they were only children in Religion. They never were much of religious men--i.e. they only wanted to talk and reason, and did not struggle to see the Beloved; and until one does that I do not say that he has any religion. He may have books, forms, doctrines, words, reasons, etc., etc., but not religion; for that begins when the soul feels the necessity, the want, the yearning after the "Beloved", and never before. And therefore our society has no right to expect from them anything more than from an ordinary "house-holder".
May, 1894
the fever of jealousy which attacked Mazoomdar gave me a terrible shock, and I pray that he would know better for he is a great and good man who has tried all his life to do good. But this proves one of my Master's sayings, "Living in a room covered with black soot-however careful you may be some spots must stick to your clothes." So, however one may try to be good and holy, so long he is in the world, some part of his nature must gravitate downwards.
The way to God is the opposite to that of the world. And to few, very few, are given to have God and mammon at the same time.
I was never a missionary, nor ever would be one my place is in the Himalayas. I have satisfied myself so far that I can with a full conscience say, "My God, I saw terrible misery amongst my brethren; I searched and discovered the way out of it, tried my best to apply the remedy, but failed. So Thy will be done."
U. S. A.,
20th May, 1894.
I am in receipt of your letter and am glad to learn that Shashi (Ramakrishnananda) is all right. Now I tell you a curious fact. Whenever anyone of you is sick, let him himself or anyone of you visualise him in your mind, and mentally say and strongly imagine that he is all right. That will cure him quickly. You can do it even without his knowledge, and even with thousands of miles between you. Remember it and do not be ill any more. 
I cannot understand why Sanyal is so miserable on account of his daughters' marriage. After all, he is going to drag his daughters through the dirty Samsâra (world) which he himself wants to escape! I can have but one opinion of that — condemnation! I hate the very name of marriage, in regard to a boy or a girl. Do you mean to say that I have to help in putting someone into bondage, you fool! If my brother Mohin marries, I will throw him off. I am very decided about that. . . . 
Yours in love,
24th May, 1894
I do not know whether I shall go away this summer or not. Most probably not. In the meantime try to organise and push on our plans. Believe you can do everything. Know that the Lord is with us, and so, onward, brave souls!
I have had enough appreciation in my own country. Appreciation or no appreciation, sleep not, slacken not. You must remember that not a bit even of our plans has been as yet carried out.
Act on the educated young men, bring them together, and organise them. Great things can be done by great sacrifices only. No selfishness, no name, no fame, yours or mine, nor my Master's even! Work, work the idea, the plan, my boys, my brave, noble, good souls--to the wheel, to the wheel put your shoulders! Stop not to look back for name, or fame, or any such nonsense. Throw self overboard and work. Remember, "The grass when made into a rope by being joined together can even chain a mad elephant." The Lord's blessings on you all! His power be in you all--as I believe it is already. "Wake up, stop not until the goal is reached", say the Vedas. Up, up, the long night is passing, the day is approaching, the wave has risen, nothing will be able to resist its tidal fury. The spirit, my boys, the spirit; the love, my children, the love; the faith, the belief; and fear not! The greatest sin is fear.
My blessings on all. Tell all the noble souls in Madras who have helped our cause that I send them my eternal love and gratitude, but I beg of them not to slacken. Throw the idea broadcast. Do not be proud; do not insist upon anything dogmatic; do not go against anything--ours is to put chemicals together, the Lord knows how and when the crystal will form. Above all, be not inflated with my success or yours. Great works are to be done; what is this small success in comparison with what is to come? Believe, believe, the decree has gone forth, the fiat of the Lord has gone forth--India must rise, the masses and the poor are to be made happy. Rejoice that you are the chosen instruments in His hands. The flood of spirituality has risen. I see it is rolling over the land resistless, boundless, all-absorbing. Every man to the fore, every good will be added to its forces, every hand will smooth its way, and glory be unto the Lord! . . .
Do not be afraid of a small beginning, great things come afterwards. Be courageous. Do not try to lead your brethren, but serve them. The brutal mania for leading has sunk many a great ship in the waters of life. Take care especially of that, i.e. be unselfish even unto death, and work. I could not write all I was going to say, but the Lord will give you all understanding, my brave boys. At it, my boys! Glory unto the Lord! . . .
20th June, 1894.
Educate and raise the masses, and thus alone a nation is possible. Our reformers do not see where the wound is, they want to save the nation by marrying the widows; do you think that a nation is saved by the number of husbands its widows get? Nor is our religion to blame, for an idol more or less makes no difference. The whole defect is here: The real nation who live in cottage have forgotten their manhood, their individuality. Trodden under the foot of the Hindu, Mussulman, or Christian, they have come to think that they are born to be trodden under the foot of everybody who has money enough in his pocket. They are to be given back their lost individuality. They are to be educated. Whether idols will remain or not, whether widows will have husbands enough or not, whether caste is good or bad, I do not bother myself with such questions. Everyone must work out his own salvation. Our duty is to put the chemicals together, the crystallisation will come through God's laws. Let us put ideas into their heads, and they will do the rest. Now this means educating the masses.
26th June, 1894.
Come up, young ones of the bird of Paradise, before your feet touch the cesspool of corruption, this world, and fly upwards. 
"O those that are awake do not go to sleep again."
"Let the world love its many, we have but one Beloved — the Lord. We care not what they say; we are only afraid when they want to paint our Beloved and give Him all sorts of monstrous qualities. Let them do whatever they please — for us He is only the beloved — my love, my love, my love, and nothing more."
"Who cares to know how much power, how much quality He has — even that of doing good! We will say once for all: We love not for the long purse, we never sell our love, we want not, we give."
"You, philosopher, come to tell us of His essences His powers, His attributes — fool! We are here dying for a kiss of His lips."
"Take your nonsense back to your own home and send me a kiss of my Love — can you?" 
"Fool! whom art thou bending thy tottering knees before, in awe and fear? I took my necklace and put it round His neck; and, tying a string to it as a collar, I am dragging Him along with me, for fear He may fly away even for a moment that necklace was the collar of love; that string the ecstasy of love. Fool! you know not the secret — the Infinite One comes within my fist under the bondage of love." "Knowest thou not that the Lord of the Universe is the bond slave of love?" "Knowest thou not that the Mover of the Universe used to dance to the music of the ringing bracelets of the shepherdesses of Vrindaban?" 
Excuse my mad scribbling, excuse my foolery in trying to express the inexpressible. It is to be felt only.  
Ever with blessings, your brother,

9th July (Sept.?), 1894.
Glory unto Jagadambâ (Mother of the Universe)! I have gained beyond expectations. The prophet has been honoured and with a vengeance. I am weeping like a child at His mercy — He never leaves His servant, sisters.
O sisters! What a rogue am I that in the face of such mercies sometimes the faith totters — seeing every moment that I am in His hands. Still the mind sometimes gets despondent. Sister, there is a God — a Father — a Mother who never leaves His Children, never, never, never. Put uncanny theories aside and becoming children take refuge in Him. I cannot write more — I am weeping like a woman.
Blessed, blessed art Thou, Lord God of my soul! 
11th July, 1894
I shall have to print much matter next year. I am going regularly to work. . . . The sheer power of the will will do everything. . . . You must organise a society which should regularly meet, and write to me about it as often as you can. In fact, get up as much enthusiasm as you can. Only, beware of falsehood. Go to work, my boys, the fire will come to you! The faculty of organisation is entirely absent in our nature, but this has to be infused. The great secret is--absence of jealousy. Be always ready to concede to the opinions of your brethren, and try always to conciliate. That is the whole secret. Fight on bravely! Life is short! Give it up to a great cause…..
Work hard. Be holy and pure and the fire will come.
Fishkill on the Hudson
19 July 1894
You need not feel any worry about my being taken care of. The Lord always takes care of His servants; and so long as I am really His servant and not the world's, I am very confident of getting everything that would be good for me. 
31st July, 1894.
The inn people are more or less well-to-do, and the camp people are healthy, young, sincere, and holy men and women. I teach them Shivo'ham, Shivo'ham, and they all repeat it, innocent and pure as they are and brave beyond all bounds. And so I am happy and glorified. Thank God for making me poor, thank God for making these children in the tents poor. 
The Dudes and Dudines are in the Hotel, but iron-bound nerves and souls of triple steel and spirits of fire are in the camp. If you had seen them yesterday, when the rain was falling in torrents and the cyclone was overturning everything, hanging by their tent strings to keep them from being blown down, and standing on the majesty of their souls — these brave ones — it would have done your hearts good. I will go a hundred miles to see the like of them. Lord bless them! I hope you are enjoying your nice village life. Never be anxious for a moment. I will be taken care of, and if not, I will know my time has come and shall pass out. 
"Sweet One! Many people offer to You many things, I am poor — but I have the body, mind, and soul. I give them over to You. Deign to accept, Lord of the Universe, and refuse them not." — So have I given over my life and soul once for all. One thing — they are a dry sort of people here — and as to that very few in the whole world are there that are not. They do not understand "Mâdhava", the Sweet One. They are either intellectual or go after faith cure, table turning, witchcraft, etc., etc. Nowhere have I heard so much about "love, life, and liberty" as in this country, but nowhere is it less understood. Here God is either a terror or a healing power, vibration, and so forth. Lord bless their souls! And these parrots talk day and night of love and love and love! 
Now, good dreams, good thoughts for you. You are good and noble. Instead of materialising the spirit, that is, dragging the spiritual to the material plane as these folks do, convert the matter into spirit, catch a glimpse at least, every day, of that world of infinite beauty and peace and purity — the spiritual, and try to live in it day and night. Seek not, touch not with your toes even, anything that is uncanny. Let your souls ascend day and night like an "unbroken string" unto the feet of the Beloved whose throne is in your own hearts and let the rest take care of themselves, that is the body and everything else. Life is evanescent, a fleeting dream; youth and beauty fade. Say day and night, "Thou art my father, my mother, my husband, my love, my lord, my God — I want nothing but Thee, nothing but Thee, nothing but Thee. Thou in me, I in Thee, I am Thee. Thou art me." Wealth goes, beauty vanishes, life flies, powers fly — but the Lord abideth for ever, love abideth for ever. If here is glory in keeping the machine in good trim, it is more glorious to withhold the soul from suffering with the body — that is the only demonstration of your being "not matter", by letting the matter alone. 
Stick to God! Who cares what comes to the body or to anything else! Through the terrors of evil, say — my God, my love! Through the pangs of death, say — my God, my love! Through all the evils under the sun, say — my God, my love! Thou art here, I see Thee. Thou art with me, I feel Thee. I am Thine, take me. I am not of the world's but Thine, leave not then me. Do not go for glass beads leaving the mine of diamonds! This life is a great chance. What, seekest thou the pleasures of the world? — He is the fountain of all bliss. Seek for the highest, aim at that highest, and you shallreach the highest. 

Yours with all blessings,
Fishkill landing, N.Y.,
July, 1894
Dear Mother,
……..Our religion teaches that anger is a great sin, even if it is "righteous". Each must follow his own religion. I could not for my soul distinguish ever the distinction between "religious anger" and "commonplace anger", "religious killing" and "commonplace killing", "religious slandering and irreligious", and so forth. Now may that "fine" ethical distinction ever enter into the ethics of our nation! Jesting apart, Mother Church, I do not care the least for the gambols these men play, seeing as I do through and through the insincerity, the hyposcrisy, and love of self and name that is the only motive power in these men…………With my sincerest love and respects for you and Father Pope.
I remain,
(Beginning of?) 1894.
…… now I am in flying colours. Such is the will of the Guru, what shall I do? It is childishness on M—'s part to be annoyed at this. Never mind, 
— Great men like you should pay no heed to what he says. Shall we, children of Shri Ramakrishna, nourished with his heart's blood, be afraid of worm-bites? "The wicked criticise the conduct of the magnanimous, which is extraordinary and whose motives are difficult to fathom" (Kalidasa'sKumârasambhavam.) — remember all this and forgive this fool. It is the will of the Lord that people of this land have their power of introspection roused, and does it lie in anybody to check His progress? I want no name — I want to be a voice without a form. I do not require anybody to defend me — 
— who am I to check or to help the course of His march? And who are others also? Still, my heartfelt gratitude to them.
— "Established in which state a man is not moved even by great misfortune" (Gita) — that state he has not reached; think of this and look upon him with pity. Through the Lord's will, the desire for name and fame has not yet crept into my heart, and I dare say never will. I am an instrument, and He is the operator. Through this instrument He is rousing the religious instinct in thousands of hearts in this far-off country. Thousands of men and women here love and revere me. . . . "Description: — He makes the dumb eloquent and makes the lame cross mountains." I am amazed at His grace. Whichever town I visit, it is in an uproar. They have named me "the cyclonic Hindu". Remember, it is His will — I am a voice without a form. 
The Lord knows whether I shall go to England or any other blessed place. He will arrange everything. ………..The Lord provides everything. . . . The Lord be praised, I know nothing. "Description: — Truth alone triumphs, not falsehood. Through Truth alone lies the path of Devayâna." You must be fearless. It is the coward who fears and defends himself. Let no one amongst us come forward to defend me. I get all news of Madras and Rajputana from time to time. . . . There are eyes that can see at a distance of fourteen thousand miles. It is quite true. Keep quiet now, everything will see the light in time, as far as He wills it. Not one word of His proves untrue. My brother, do men grieve over the fight of cats and dogs? So the jealousy, envy, and elbowing of common men should make no impression on your mind.
For the last six months I have been saying, the curtain is going up, the sun is rising. Yes, the curtain is lifting by degrees, slow but sure; you will come to know it in time. He knows. One cannot speak out one's mind. These are things not for writing. . . . Never let go your hold of the rudder, grasp it firm. We are steering all right, no mistaking that, but landing on the other shore is only a question of time. That's all. Can a leader be made my brother? A leader is born. Do you understand? And it is a very difficult task to take on the role of a leader. — One must be Description: — a servant of servants, and must accommodate a thousand minds. There must not be a shade of jealousy or selfishness, then you are a leader. First, by birth, and secondly, unselfish — that's a leader.
Everything is going all right, everything will come round. He casts the net all right, and winds it up likewise Description: — ours is but to follow; love is the best instrument. Love conquers in the long run. It won't do to become impatient — wait, wait — patience is bound to give success. . . . 
I tell you brother, let everything go on as it is, only take care that no form becomes necessary — unity in variety — see that universality be not hampered in the least. Everything must be sacrificed, if necessary, for that one sentiment,universality. Whether I live or die, whether I go back to India or not, remember this specially, that universality — perfect acceptance, not tolerance only — we preach and perform. Take care how you trample on the least rights of others. Many a huge ship has foundered in that whirlpool. Remember, perfect devotion minus its bigotry — this is what we have got to show. Through His grace everything will go all right. . . . Everybody wants to be a leader, but it is the failure to grasp that he is born, that causes all this mischief. ...
Our matrons are all hale and hearty, I hope? Where is Gour-Mâ? We want a thousand such Mothers with that noble stirring spirit. ... We want all. It is not at all necessary that all should have the same faith in our Lord as we have, but we want to unite all the powers of goodness against all the powers of evil. ... A besetting sin with Sannyasins is the taking pride in their monastic order. That may have its utility during the first stages, but when they are full-grown, they need it no more. One must make no distinction between householders and Sannyasins — then only one is a true Sannyasin. . . . 
A movement which half a dozen penniless boys set on foot and which now bids fair to progress in such an accelerated motion — is it a humbug or the Lord's will? If it is, then let all give up party-spirit and jealousy, and unite in action. A universal religion cannot be set up through party faction. . . . 
If all understand one day for one minute that one cannot become great by the mere wish, that he only rises whom He raises, and he falls whom He brings down then all trouble is at an end. But there is that egotism — hollow in itself, and without the power to move a finger: how ludicrous of it to say, "I won't let anyone rise!" That jealousy, that absence of conjoint action is the very nature of enslaved nations. But we must try to shake it off. The terrible jealousy is characteristic of us. . . . You will be convinced of this if you visit some other countries.. .
At any cost, any price, any sacrifice, we must never allow that to creep in among ourselves. Whether we be ten or two, do not care, but those few must be perfect characters. . . . "It is not good to ask of one's father if the Lord keeps His promise (to look after His devotees)." And the Lord will do so, get your minds easy on that score. . . . We must spread his name in Rajputana, Punjab, U.P., Madras, and such other provinces — yes, in Raiputana, where still there are people who can say, "Such has ever been the custom with Raghu's line that they keep their word even at the cost of life."
A bird, in the course of its flight, reaches a spot whence it looks on the ground below with supreme calmness, Have you reached that spot? He who has not reached there has no right to teach others. Relax your limbs and float with the current, and you are sure to reach your destination.
……..Yes, brother, the distinction between Sannyasin and layman is a fiction. "Description: etc. — "He makes the dumb fluent," etc. My friend it is difficult to judge what is in a particular individual.
Ever yours in love,
 Summer 1894
... We want some disciples — fiery young men — do you see? — intelligent and brave, who dare to go to the jaws of Death, and are ready to swim the ocean across. Do you follow me? We want hundreds like that, both men and women. Try your utmost for that end alone. Make converts right and left, and put them into our purity-drilling machine. 
….. . . We must electrify society, electrify the world. Idle gossip and barren ceremonials won't do. Ceremonials are meant for householders, your work is the distribution and propagation of thought-currents. If you can do that, then it is all right. . .
Let character be formed and then I shall be in your midst. Do you see? We want two thousand Sannyasins, nay ten, or even twenty thousand — men and women, both. What are our matrons doing? We want converts at any risk. Go and tell them, and try yourselves, heart and soul. Not householder disciples, mind you, we want Sannyasins. Let each one of you have a hundred heads tonsured — young educated men, not fools. Then you are heroes. We must make a sensation. Give up your passive attitude, gird your loins and stand up. Let me see you make some electric circuits between Calcutta and Madras. Start centres at places, go on always making converts. Convert everyone into the monastic order whoever seeks for it, irrespective of sex, and then I shall be in your midst. A huge spiritual tidal wave is coming — he who is low shall become noble, and he who is ignorant shall become the teacher of great scholars — through HIS grace. "Description: — Arise! Awake! and stop not till the goal is reached." Life is ever expanding, contraction is death. The self-seeking man who is looking after his personal comforts and leading a lazy life — there is no room for him even in hell.
He alone is a child of Shri Ramakrishna who is moved to pity for all creatures and exerts himself for them even at the risk of incurring personal damnation, Description: — others are vulgar people. Whoever, at this great spiritual juncture, will stand up with a courageous heart and go on spreading from door to door, from village to village, his message, is alone my brother, and a son of his. This is the test, he who is Ramakrishna's child does not seek his personal good. "Description: — They wish to do good to others even when at the point of death." Those that care for their personal comforts and seek a lazy life, who are ready to sacrifice all before their personal whims, are none of us; let them pack off, while yet there is time. Propagate his character, his teaching, his religion. This is the only spiritual practice, the only worship, this verily is the means, and this the goal. Arise! Arise! A tidal wave is coming! Onward! Men and women, down to the Chandâla (Pariah) — all are pure in his eyes. Onward! Onward! There is no time to care for name, or fame, or Mukti, or Bhakti! We shall look to these some other time. Now in this life let us infinitely spread his lofty character, his sublime life, his infinite soul. This is the only work — there is nothing else to do. Wherever his name will reach, the veriest worm will attain divinity, nay, is actually attaining it; you have got eyes, and don't you see it? Is it a child's play? Is it silly prattle? Is it foolery? "Description: — Arise! Awake! " Great Lord! He is at our back. I cannot write any more. — Onward! I only tell you this, that whoever reads this letter will imbibe my spirit! Have faith! Onward! Great Lord! . . . I feel as if somebody is moving my hand to write in this way. Onward! Great Lord! Everyone will be swept away! Take care, he is coming! Whoever will be ready to serve him — no, not him but his children — the poor and the downtrodden, the sinful and the afflicted, down to the very worm — who will be ready to serve these, in them he will manifest himself. Through their tongue the Goddess of Learning Herself will speak, and the Divine Mother — the Embodiment of all Power — will enthrone Herself in their hearts. Those that are atheists, unbelievers, worthless, and foppish, why do they call themselves as belonging to his fold. . . .  
Yours affectionately,
23 August 1894
Where to fly? In India I have become horribly public--crowds will follow me and take my life out. I got an Indian letter from Landsberg. Every ounce of fame can only be bought at the cost of a pound of peace and holiness. I never thought of that before. I have become entirely disgusted with this blazoning. I am disgusted with myself. Lord will show me the way to peace and purity. Why, Mother, I confess to you: no man can live in an atmosphere of public life, even in religion, without the devil of competition now and then thrusting his head into the serenity of his heart. Those who are trained to preach a doctrine never feel it, for they never knew religion. But those that are after God, and not after the world, feel at once that every bit of name and fame is at the cost of their purity. It is so much gone from that ideal of perfect unselfishness, perfect disregard of gain or name or fame. Lord help me. Pray for me, Mother. I am very much disgusted with myself. Oh, why the world be so that one cannot do anything without putting himself to the front; why cannot one act hidden and unseen and unnoticed? The world has not gone one step beyond idolatry yet. They cannot act from ideas, they cannot be led by ideas. But they want the person, the man. And any man that wants to do something must pay the penalty--no hope. This nonsense of the world. Shiva, Shiva, Shiva.
By the by, I have got such a beautiful edition of Thomas a Kempis. How I love that old monk. He caught a wonderful glimpse of the "behind the veil"--few ever got such. My, that is religion. No humbug of the world. No shilly-shallying, tall talk, conjecture--I presume, I believe, I think. How I would like to go out of this piece of painted humbug they call the beautiful world with Thomas a Kempis--beyond, beyond, which can only be felt, never expressed.
That is religion. Mother, there is God. There all the saints, prophets and incarnations meet. Beyond the Babel of Bibles and Vedas, creeds and crafts, dupes and doctrines--where is all light, all love, where the miasma of this earth can never reach. Ah! who will take me thither? Do you sympathize with me, Mother? My soul is groaning now under the hundred sorts of bondage I am placing on it. Whose India? Who cares? Everything is His. What are we? Is He dead? Is He sleeping? He, without whose command a leaf does not fall, a heart does not beat, who is nearer to me than my own self. It is bosh and nonsense--to do good or do bad or do fuzz. We do nothing. We are not. The world is not. He is, He is. Only He is. None else is. He is.
Om, the one without a second. He in me, I in Him. I am like a bit of glass in an ocean of light. I am not, I am not. He is, He is, He is.
Om, the one without a second.
Yours ever affectionately,
August 28, 1894
 I am having a very, very good time all the time, Lord be praised.
I have written to India not to bother me with constant letters. Why, when I am travelling in India nobody writes to me. Why should they spend all their superfluous energy in scrawling letters to me in America? My whole life is to be that of a wanderer--here or there or anywhere. I am in no hurry. I had a foolish plan in my head unworthy of a Sannyasin. I have given it up now and mean to take life easy. No indecent hurry. Don't you see, Mother Church? You must always remember, Mother Church, that I cannot settle down even at the North Pole, that wander about I must--that is my vow, my religion. So India or North Pole or South Pole--don't care where. Last two years I have been travelling among races whose language even I cannot speak. "I have neither father nor mother nor brothers nor sisters nor friends nor foes, nor home nor country--a traveller in the way of eternity, asking no other help, seeking no other help but God."
Yours ever affectionately,Vivekananda.
31st August, 1894
Are you sincere? unselfish even unto death? and loving? Then fear not, not even death. Onward, my lads! The whole world requires Light. It is expectant! India alone has that Light, not in magic, mummery, and charlatanism, but in the teaching of the glories of the spirit of real religion--of the highest spiritual truth. That is why the Lord has preserved the race through all its vicissitudes unto the present day. Now the time has come. Have faith that you are all, my brave lads, born to do great things! Let not the barks of puppies frighten you--no, not even the thunderbolts of heaven--but stand up and work!
Ever yours affectionately,