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"To us all towns are one, all men our kin.
Life's good comes not from others' gift, nor ill
Man's pains and pains' relief are from within.
Thus have we seen in visions of the wise !."

- Tamil Poem in Purananuru, circa 500 B.C 

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Home > Unfolding Consciousness > Spirituality & the Tamil Nation > Swami Vivekananda on Patriotism

SWAMI VIVEKANANDA ON PATRIOTISM

Collected Works - Vol III pages 225-226
Swami Vivekananda Study Center

"They talk of patriotism. I believe in patriotism, and I also have my own ideal of patriotism. Three things are necessary for great achievements :

First, feel from the heartWhat is in the intellect or reason? It goes a few steps and there it stops. But through the heart comes inspiration.

Love opens the most impossible gates; love is the gate to all the secrets in the universe. Feel, therefore, my would-be reformers, my would-be patriots! Do you feel? Do you feel that the millions and millions of the descendants of gods and of sages have become next-door neighbours to brutes? Do you feel that millions have been starving today, and millions have been starving for ages? Do you feel that ignorance has come over the land as a dark crowd? Does it make you restless? Does it make you sleepless? Has it gone over your blood, coursing through your veins, becoming consonanant with your heart-beats? Has it made you almost mad? Are you seized with the one idea of misery and ruin, and have you forgotten all about your name, your fame, your wives, your children, your property, even your own bodies? Have you done that? This is the first step to become a patriot, the very first step.......

You may feel, then; but instead of spending your energies on frothy talk, have you found any way out, any practical solution, some help instead of condemnation, some sweet words to soothe their miseries, to bring them out of this living death?

Yet that is not all.

Have you got the will to surmount mountain high obstructions?

If the whole world stands against you sword in hand, would you still dare to do what you think is right? If your wife and children are against you, if all your money goes, your name dies, your wealth vanishes, would you still stick to it? Would you still pursue it and go on steadily towards your own goal? As the great King Bhartehari says (Niti-sataka, verse 74) :

Nindantu nitinpunah yadi va stuvantu
Laksmih samavisatu gacchatu va yathestam;
Adyaiva va maranamastu yugantare va
Nyayyat pathat pravicalanti padam na dhirah-

"Let the sages blame or let them praise;
let the goddess of fortune come or let her go wherever she likes;
let death come today, or let it come after millions of years;
he indeed is the steady man who does not move one inch from the way of truth."

Have you got that steadfastness?

If you have these three things, each one of you will make miracles.


Swami Vivekananda Quote
(contributed by K.Maheswari, Singapore)


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