My India — Swami Vivekananda Jayanti
Graphic Quote Art — Swami Vivekananda Quotes and Chicago Speeches
Swami Vivekananda (January 12, 1863 – July 4, 1902) was a Hindu monk and a patriotic saint of India.
Swami Vivekananda Jayanti celebrates the birthday of Swami Vivekananda according to Hindu Lunar Calendar. According to Gregorian Calendar, Swami Vivekananda was born on January 12, 1863. However, according to Hindu calendar, his birthday falls on the Paush Krishna Saptami, the 7th day after the full moon day in the Hindu month of Paush. Therefore the date varies from year to year. The date of the birth anniversary of Swami Vivekananda as per Hindu Lunar Calendar is on January 31, 2016. It is the 153rd birth anniversary of Swami Vivekananda.
Swami Vivekananda Jayanti — January 31, 2016
Swami Vivekananda was modern Hindu saint and follower of Vedanta philosophy of Hinduism. He was disciple of Ramakrishna. He founded Belur Math, Ramakrishna Math and Ramakrishna Mission.
Swami Vivekananda at the Parliament of the World’s Religions (1893)
Swami Vivekananda represented India and Hinduism at the Parliament of the World’s Religions (1893). This was the first World’s Parliament of Religions, and it was held from September 11 to 27, 1893. Delegates from all over the world joined this Parliament.
The more we come out and do good to others, the more our hearts will be purified, and God will be in them.
To celebrate 153rd Birth Anniversary of Swami Vivekananda, we bring you his famous speeches at the Parliament of World’s Religions, Chicago, 1893.
We are publishing the full text of his famous Response to Welcome speech through which he introduced Hinduism at the Parliament of the World’s Religions, Chicago in 1893. His Sisters and Brothers of America got an overwhelming ovation from all the ‘ladies and gentlemen’ in the gathering. We also publish his Address at the Final Session.
Response to Welcome — Chicago, September 11, 1893
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 honour 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 remnant 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 places all mingle their water in the sea, so, O Lord, the 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 civilisation 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 honour 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.
Stand up and be strong! No fear. No superstition. Face the truth as it is!
Address at the Final Session — Chicago, September 27, 1893
My thanks to those noble souls whose large hearts and love of truth first dreamed this wonderful dream and then realised 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 other, 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.”
You must have an iron will, if you would cross the ocean. You must be strong enough to pierce mountains.
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Observe with due solemnity and pay homage to martyrs.