The audience listened spellbound while he wove the fabric as glowing and full of colour as a beautiful Kashmir shawl. Now a thread of humour, now one of tragedy, many of serious thought, many of aspiration, of lofty idealism, of wisdom. Through it all ran the woof of India's most sacred teaching: the divinity of man, his innate and eternal perfection; that this perfection is not a growth, nor a gradual attainment, but a present reality. "That thou art." You are that now. There is nothing to do but to realize it. The realization may come now in the twinkling of an eye, or in a million years, but "All will reach the sunlit heights." This message has well been called. "The wondrous Evangel of the Self". We are not the helpless limited beings which we think ourselves to be, but birthless, deathless, glorious children of immortal bliss. Like the teachers of old he, too, spoke in parables. The theme was always the same — man's real nature. Not what we seem to be, but what we are. We are like men walking over a gold mine thinking we are poor. We are like the lion who was born in a sheepfold and thought he was a sheep. When the wolf came he bleated with fear quite unaware of his nature. Then one day a lion came, and seeing him bleating among the sheep called out to him, "You are not a sheep. You are a lion. You have no fear." The lion at once became conscious of his nature and let out a mighty roar. He stood on the platform of the Unitarian Church pouring forth glorious truths in a voice unlike any voice one had ever heard before, a voice full of cadences, expressing every emotion, now with a pathos that stirred hitherto unknown deeps of tragedy, and then just as the pain was becoming unbearable, that same voice would move one to mirth only to check it in a midcourse with the thunder of an earnestness so intense that it left one awed, a trumpet call to awake. One felt that one never knew what music was until one heard that marvellous voice.
Which of us who heard him then can ever forget what soul memories were stirred within us when we heard the ancient message of India. — "Hear ye, Children of Immortal Bliss, even ye who dwell in higher spheres. I have found the Ancient One, knowing whom alone ye shall he saved from death over again." Or the story of the lion and the sheep. Blessed Truth! In spite of your bleating, your timidity, your fear, you are not the sheep, you are and always have been the lion, powerful, fearless, the king of beasts. It is only an illusion that is to be overcome. You are THAT now. With these words came a subtle force or influence that lifted one into a purer and rarer atmosphere. Was it possible to hear and feel this and ever be the same again? All one's values were changed. The seed of spirituality was planted to grow and grow throughout the years until it inevitably reached fruition. True, this sublime teaching is hoary with age. It may even be true that every Hindu man and woman knows it, many may be able to formulate it clearly, but Vivekananda spoke with authority. To him, it was not a speculative philosophy but the living Truth. All else might be false, this alone was true. He realized it. After his own great realization, life held but one purpose — to give the message with which he was entrusted, to point out the path and to help others on the road to the same supreme goal. "Arise, awake, and stop not till the goal is reached."
The main theme of my life is to take the message of Sanatana Dharma to every home and pave the way for launching, in a big way, the man-making programme preached and envisaged by great seers like Swami Vivekananda. - Mananeeya Eknathji
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|. . . Are you Strong? Do you feel Strength? — for I know it is Truth alone that gives Strength. Strength is the medicine for the world's disease . . . |
This is the great fact: "Strength is LIFE; Weakness is Death."
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