> Sayings / Quotes of Swami Vivekananda
Spirit of Performing Service
#. Do not stand on a high pedestal and take five cents in your hand and say, "Here, my poor man"; but be grateful that the poor man is there, so that by making a gift to him you are able to help yourself. It is not the receiver that is blessed, but it is the giver. Be thankful that you are allowed to exercise your power of benevolence and mercy in the world, and thus become pure and perfect.
#. It is our privilege to be allowed to be charitable, for only so can we grow. The poor man suffers that we may be helped; let the giver kneel down and give thanks, let the receiver stand up and permit. See the Lord back of every being and give to Him.
#. This is the gist of all worship--to be pure and to do good to others. He who sees Shiva in the poor, in the weak, and in the diseased, really worships Shiva; and if he sees Shiva only in the image, his worship is but preliminary. He who has served and helped one poor man seeing Shiva in him, without thinking of his caste, or creed, or race, or anything, with him Shiva is more pleased than with the man who sees Him only in temples.
#. He who wants to serve the father must serve the children first. He who wants to serve Shiva must serve His children---must serve all creatures in the world first.
#. It is said in the Shastra that those who serve the servants of God are His greatest servants. So you will bear this in mind.
#. Selfishness is the chief sin, thinking of ourselves first. He who thinks "I will eat first, I will have more money than others, and I will possess everything"; he who thinks "I will get to heaven before others, I will get Mukti before others", is a selfish man. The unselfish man says, "I will be last, I do not care to go to heaven, I will go to hell, if by doing so I can help my brothers." This unselfishness is the test of religion.
#. Do you love your fellow men? Where should you go to seek for God-- are not all the poor, the miserable, the weak, gods? Why not worship them first? Why go to dig a well on the shores of the Ganga?
#. Awake, awake, great ones! The world is burning with misery. Can you sleep? Let us call and call till the sleeping gods awake, till the god within answers to the call. What more is in life? What greater work?
#. May I be born again and again, and suffer thousands of miseries so that I may worship the only God that exists, the only God I believe in, the sum-total of all souls-- and above all, my God the wicked, my God the miserable, my God the poor of all races, of all species, is the special object of my worship.
#. Doing good to others out of compassion is good, but the Seva (service) of all beings in the spirit of the Lord is better.
#. Doing work is not religion, but work done rightly leads to Freedom. In reality all pity is darkness, because whom to pity? Can you pity God? And is there anything else? Thank God for giving you this world as a moral gymnasium to help your development, but never imagine you can help the world.
#. The first of everything should go to the poor; we have only a right to what remains. The poor are God's representatives; any one that suffers is His representative.
#. It is a privilege to serve mankind, for this is the worship of God; God is here, in all these human souls. He is the soul of man.
#. Be grateful to the man you help, think of him as God. Is it not a great privilege to be allowed to worship God by helping your fellow men?
#. If you seek your own salvation, you will go to hell. It is the salvation of others that you must seek and even if you have to go to hell in working for others, that is worth more than to gain heaven by seeking your own salvation.
#. Those that want to help mankind must take their own pleasure and pain, name and fame, and all sorts of interests, and make a bundle of them and throw them into the sea, and then come to the Lord. This is what all the Masters said and did.
#. In this world always take the position of the giver. Give everything and look for no returns. Give love, give help, give service, give any little thing you can, but keep out barter. Make no conditions and none will be imposed. Let us give out of our own bounty, just as God gives to us. The Lord is the only Giver, all the world are only shopkeepers. Get His cheque and it must be honoured everywhere.
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