Delivered on July 29, 1904
While talking to some students this morning, a remark escaped these lips: “I never remember that I was ever born. Indeed, I was never born, and no power in the world can convince me that I can ever die.” While addressing a large congregation in India, I spoke on a subject which smacked of politics. Among the audience were judges, lawyers, and people occupying very high positions under the Government. After the talk they came up and remonstrated, saying “Swami, never deliver such a talk in future, because there is a fear of your person being thrown into prison or being taken to the scaffold.” Rama’s answer was, “Blessed ones, I can never play the part of Judas Iscariot and sell the Christ of Truth for thirty pieces of silver, for nobody can convince me that (there is a sword in this world sharp enough to cut my soul, or a weapon strong enough to wound me, immortal Being, never born, incapable of being! Put to death, the same yesterday, today, forever, this is me! Why should I compromise?”
The remarks which you will hear you may not be accustomed to hear so often, and perhaps they will sound strange, but as a debt to Truth I am bound to declare them.
Many stories are extant in this country about India. The other day, after delivering a talk in Minneapolis, a lady came up to Rama and said, “Mr. Swami, don’t the ladies still throw their babies to the crocodiles in the Ganges?” I told her, “Blessed divinity, I was also thrown into the Ganges, but like your fabled Jonah, I swam out.” As a matter of fact, I have been from the source of the river Ganges to the mouth on foot. Those of you who have had the pleasure of walking with me know that this little body can walk 40 miles a day. I tell you that roaming around the banks of the Ganges from one end to the other, I found that sacred river so clear, pure and extremely rapid, awfully swift, that, in the name of Science, no crocodiles or alligators could ever live in it. Alligators and crocodiles live in muddy, turbid streams, and no crocodile could be pointed out in that river. Bless the sweet hearts of story concoctors! Such are the reports current in this country about India.
The other day I received a letter from Seattle, Washington, written by a Hindu implicated in a queer case. One night he was going home from the rooms of a certain Spiritual Society, and he took a car. A girl took the same car as he did. They rode together and when she left the car, he also left, because he lived in that neighbourhood. After an hour a policeman came up and arrested the student, and for six hours he remained in jail. The next morning he was tried. The complaint which the girl lodged against him was “He looked at me with those ‘ piercing, black, spiritualistic eyes’, and I felt as if I was going to be hypnotized, and I was scared.” Oh Heavens, where should the poor Hindus put their eyes before they come to America? Such are the notions about the Hindus in some quarters of this country.
As to the bright side I might lay before you fact after fact about the immense wealth of ancient India. Reports were current in Europe that in India houses were made of gold and streets of silver, and such reports about India made all Europe eager and anxious to go after the wealth of India, and in conquest of India, people came from all parts of Europe. Some wanted to go by way of the north – west passage, and came to India. Your Columbus was at first in search of a new route to India when he stumbled upon blessed America, So India had a charm one day, even so far as its material wealth is concerned. I have simply to refer you to the accounts of the Persian and Greek writers of the temples in India. In one temple ten thousand servants were employed, and the ceilings were set with diamonds and rubies. If you want to have some historical records to prove these statements concerning the wealth of India, I refer you to the speeches of Edmund Burke about Warren Hastings and Lord Clive.
I might say a great deal about the intellectual wealth of India. In India I have seen a man performing most wonderful feats of memory. About 50 or 60 persons were seated in a room in a semi – circle about him. Each person present was told to have before him passages from any book they might wish. Some of them took passages from books written in English, Arabic, Hindustani, and so on. This man was blind. Each one of the persons told him the number of lines their passage contained. Then in turn each one of the parties gave him one line at a time. The first man, let us say, gave him the first line of his passage which consisted of 20 lines; the next gave the fifth line of his passage of 13 lines, and so on. Then came the second turn when all the people gave him one line again. Thus promiscuously and irregularly the lines were given to this blind prophet. Then in the 13th turn, when he reached the man who has announced that his passage consisted of 13 lines, he said, “Mr. so and so, the number of lines of your passage are exhausted,” and in his mind having arranged all these lines in their correct order, he repeated the whole passage from beginning to end without a single mistake. So he went on completing and reciting the passages to the whole circle.
I might tell you of some of the psychological researches. There was a certain Swami who visited India and who could throw himself into a state of suspended consciousness for five minutes. But in the Himalayas I have met many Swamis who could throw themselves into apparent death for six months. Here is a case of resurrection after a period of apparent death during six months. One of these Swamis was put into a box and interred in the ground, and after six months he was dug out, and, by means of certain processes which he had told the people to perform on his body, he came to life again. Just think of that, blessed ones! A man came to life after three days of seeming death, and almost all Europe have pinned their name and faith to his personality on the ground of resurrection after three days. People rise again in India after six months of apparent death, and we take it for what it is worth. This is not spirituality, but it is a genuine physiological and psychological process, a scientific process. If the present day Doctors do not know about it, they must grow in the knowledge of their Science. We take it for what it is worth.
Here again I am moved to say a few words about the negative side of the question before I pass on to the positive side. The negative side is this. The other day a gentleman came up and said, “Don’t, Swami, bother us with your philosophy and religion. Is not that antiquated?” As if truth could be antiquated! As if truth were changeable and mutable! I said to him, “Brother, do you know what is the cause of your prosperity and of America and Europe’s progress today?” I was moved to make this answer because he said ‘your religion is antiquated.’ Our religion is living, is living!
Our religion lays stress on the positive side, while yours lays stress on the negative side – ‘ thou shalt not.’ I said, “Blessed one, let us examine the cause of America’s prosperity, and what America’s religion is.” I told him that his religion was worn as a charm around the neck, as an amulet. A boy wears an amulet and attributes his successes to the charms of the amulet, but his failures he attributes to the lack of his own exertions. So, blessed ones, the real cause of your prosperity and your boasted civilization is something else. It is not Christianity, or what I call Churchianity. Let us examine the matter historically. We read history, and we find that before this so called Christianity or Churchianity was introduced into Europe, there were nations in existence who were prosperous and civilized at least to the same extent as America and Europe are today, if not more so. Egypt had her civilization, China had her civilization, and in some respects the European art has not come up to the art of ancient Egypt or China. Persia, Greece and Rome had their civilization, not to say anything of India. All these countries, all these nations were civilized, and they were heathens also. If civilization and material prosperity always went with Christianity, then, pray tell me that although Christianity was not born, yet these countries were civilized and prosperous. Why? Again, we see Rome, the greatest country in the world at one time, Rome, the most prosperous nation, fell. What brought about the decline of the Roman Empire? It was the advent and introduction of Christianity. Read Gibbon on that subject; read any other standard historical work on that subject Greece was so prosperous and happy before Christianity was introduced there. What is the Christian Greece of today as compared with the heathen Greece of those good old times? Again we say, “Come, read history.” In spite of facts and figures nobody has the least right to attribute the prosperity of America and Europe to Christianity, to Churchianity. For more than a thousand years after the introduction of Christianity into Europe, it was under the pitch dark shadow of what are called the Dark Ages, the ages of indescribable gloom and the greatest superstition and ignorance that ever visited the world. This is what was the result of the introduction of Christianity into Europe.
Some people say, “Look here, what has not Christianity done; Christianity is the greatest civilizing factor in the world! It is the civilizing factor which must introduce Inquisitions, the burning of witches and the persecution of scientific thinkers. Wherever Science wanted to advance, there did Christianity come up ready to choke it to death. Bruno was burnt to death because of his scientific views. You know how Christianity treated Ben Johnson and Carlyle. Let us examine the real facts of what has contributed to the prosperity of America and Europe.
Blessed ones, it is not the hell fire preached from the pulpits that has raised you. It is the fire coming from the steam engine, the electricity, the printing presses, it is the ships and railway systems, – it is these to which you owe your prosperity and material elevation. Says Dr. Johnson of England, “If a boy tells you that he peeped through this window, while as a matter of fact he peeped through the other, whip him!” So I say to you, when you ascribe to one thing what is really due to some other cause, what do you deserve? So the real cause of your material advancement are these factors which I have mentioned, these scientific discoveries, these scientific inventions. No one of these discoveries or inventions was made by a Reverend Doctor or Minister of the Church. Was James Watt, George Stephenson, Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Edison, “or anyone of those folks a Reverend Doctor, a Missionary or Minister? If anyone of these men had been a preacher of the Gospel, then we might say that the Gospel was the cause of your material advancement, of your material prosperity. But we see that the only discovery made by a Minister was the discovery of gunpowder. The only scientific discovery that ever came from the blessed hands or brain of the preachers of the Gospel was gunpowder.
You see that the cause of your prosperity is not Churchianity or Christian dogmas. It is not. Just as the cause of America and Europe’s material prosperity is not the blessed religion of America and Europe, so the cause of India’s material downfall is not the Hindu religion. I maintain that the real cause of your prosperity or of any nation is true spirituality, and true spirituality I always distinguish from the forms, the dogmas, the creeds, the garments, the dress in which it is presented. So I say that the cause of America’s prosperity is true, genuine spirituality, which is engendered and propagated in spite of the preaching from the pulpits and the usages encouraged by that preaching. All of the “Thou shalts” and “Thou shalt nots” have hindered and not aided your growth, your spiritual growth. Kant calls them the categorical imperatives, a statement in the imperative mood, second person. All such statements limit your freedom, they take Hway your liberty.
Wherefrom did this true spirituality arise? Where – from, in the history of the world, sprang this true spirituality? That is what I have to tell you. True spirituality is what we call the Vedanta. All the religions of this world are based upon a personality. Christianity hinges around the name of Christ, Confucianism around the name of Confucius, Buddhism around the name of Buddha, Zoroastrianism around the name of Zoroaster, Mohammedanism around the name of Mohammed. The word Vedanta means the ultimate Science, the Science of the soul, and it requires a man to approach it in the same spirit in which you approach a work on Chemistry. You don’t read a work on Chemistry, taking it on the authority of Chemists like Lavoisier, Boyle, Reynolds, Davy, and others. You take up a work on Chemistry and analyze everything yourself. I believe that water consists of hydrogen and oxygen on the authority of my own experiments, not on the authority of anybody else. The electrolysing of water shows that to me. So a religion that is based on authority is no religion. That alone is truth which is based upon your own authority. With that understanding I might recommend to you books upon books on the subject to be read, digested, and assimilated. This is the spirit in which I want you to approach the word Vedanta. I don’t mean that you should pin your faith to Vedanta, I don’t want to proselytize anyone. But having made the meaning of this word clear, I will say that this Vedanta or true spirituality flows from the mighty Himalayas, the mountains of the world. As those magnificent streams and beautiful rivers flow from those heights, so the genuine spirituality flowed from India, Your European Orientalists say that the books on these subjects were written about four thousand years before Christ. And these people, in their attempts to discover the origin of these books, have been working under the heavy weight of the superstition that the world was created only four thousand years before Christ. But I, as a student of the Vedas, can furnish you with internal evidence that these statements of those folks are wrong. I have been a Professor of Higher Mathematics in a University. I have been lecturing on dynamics, analytical hydrostatics, astronomy, trigonometry, and through reading the Vedas 1 find frequent references to the positions of the stars and constellations in the heavens in those days. The marking of the positions of Orion and other constellations in those days is given in the Vedas, and then making mathematical calculations, I give you the internal evidence, scientific and mathematical, of the fact that these Vedas were written, at least some of them, eight thousand years before Christ. Shall we believe in the evidence given by a piece of canvas, or the evidence given directly by God through the letters of the stars and mathematical formulae? This is a vast subject, but I can, in this short time, lay before you only the salient points, some of the broad landmarks in the whole scheme.
Have anyone of you read the accounts of India given by the ancient Greeks? About four hundred years before Christ, the Greeks began to visit India. History shows that, and these Greeks have left accounts of their visits. I have read some of them. You will find in those accounts that in those days the people of India were called an ideal sort of people. The Greeks say that the Hindus never told a lie. Women had mixed freely with men; they lived on terms of equality with them and they say grand, wonderful Universities, in the mountains and forests, existed all over the country. They go on describing in glowing terms the material wealth of the land, and what is called faithlessness and impurity they say was absolutely unknown, they describe something about the system of philosophy of the people. The Greeks were charmed. Even today we find among some of the great works of ancient India, books written by women. At one of the greatest Parliaments of Religions held in India, where one of the greatest philosophers of the world spoke, it was a woman of India who presided. Some of the grandest, greatest and most wonderful hymns came from the blessed hearts of women in India. I agree with Walt Whitman when he says “Truth is first conceived of woman.”
What brought about the downfall of all the institutions in India? What brought idolatry into India? Idolatry is not indigenous in India. Today the Christian folk tell you that the people are idol worshippers. But in the voluminous Vedic writings, in the writings on Poetry, Grammar, Mathematics, Architecture and Music in India, we find not the least reference or allusion to idolatry, where from then did this idolatry come? It forms no part of the religion of India. This idolatry in India came through the Christians. People have not read that page of history yet, but this investigation of mine will be issued in printed form. I prove it from external as well as internal evidence that between the 4th and 5th centuries after Christ, some Roman Catholic Christians went over to India, and these Christians are still present in India today. They are called St. Thomas Christians, living in the Southern part of India. These Christians introduced idolatry. Then from internal evidence I prove that the greatest advocate of idolatry, Ramanuja, had for his preceptor, one of those St. Thomas Christians. The first statue before which these men bowed I know, and we see in this first statue that its face is no oriental one. This shows, my blessed ones, that the origin of idolatry is from what you call Christianity. You took it there. The Missionaries come to India today denouncing idolatry, pulling it down on the one hand, and on the other they make those images and sell them to make money. This is how you want to convert those people. Will these idols which you make and sell to the people, have a greater force than the Gospel? It is for you to decide.
Then again the people tell you so much of the slavery of women in that land, – the custom of veiling themselves in that country. A word about the origin of that too. The Mahommedans who at one time ruled India were very immoral. Whenever they saw an unmarried Hindu girl, they wanted to rob her of her honour. Thus women were subjected to brutal outrages. The Hindus wanted to escape this, and introduced the custom that no woman should be allowed to marry except under the age of puberty; under that they should marry. Then again the women could not walk in the streets unveiled because the Mohammedan conquerors, if they saw their faces, would rob them of their honour. Thus the custom was introduced of wearing veils, which custom has been prevalent in all countries ruled by Mohammedans. This custom never existed in the days of Hindu rule.
The Hindus, my beloved ones, are of the same flesh and blood as you. Their language was the origin of your language. If my colour is dark, that means only that my skin is tanned; but the parts of my body which are covered are as red as yours. Their face is oriental, but they are one with you, your own flesh and blood.
That the European world owes its spirituality and civilization to Greece, no sane man will try to deny. But, blessed ones, what about the Greeks? What about the Philosophy of the Greeks? Did you ever read Plato, Socrates, and Pythagoras side by side with the Philosophy of India? If you have, then you can never deny that the theories, such as the ‘Immortality of the Soul’, Metempsychosis, all are the offspring of Hindu Philosophy, with this difference, however, that the Greeks did not get all the truth from the Hindus. We see today that the logic of Aristotle, as compared with the logic of the Hindus, is very defective. Compare the way the Greeks analyze the syllogism with the way the Hindus do it, and you will see that the Aristotelian Philosophy is defective. In the works of the Hindus, Inductive and Deductive Logic is brought out, while the Greeks and Europeans bring out only the deductive methods. William Jones proves this statement. He says, “When we compare the writings of the Greeks with the great, clear, comprehensive systems of the philosophy of the Hindus of India, we cannot help thinking that the Greeks derived their knowledge from the fountainhead of Indian philosophy.”
What distinguishes your New Testament from the Old? It is sayings like these – “‘I and my Father are One;’ – ‘I live and move and have my being in Him;’ – ‘In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God;’ – ‘He who has seen the Son has seen the Father;’ – ‘The kingdom of Heaven is within you;’ – ‘Love your neighbour as yourself.’ “Again, when Christ says, – “Eat ye my flesh and drink ye my blood, and unless ye eat my flesh and drink my blood, ye cannot be saved,” see how the people have misinterpreted this saying. Instead of eating and drinking the flesh and blood and being done with it, they make a fetish of it. Why, in the name of philosophy and logic and reason, he who runs can read. Read the books on the Vedas and you will know that these statements are in the Vedic books, preached thousands and thousands of years ago in India. As to the resurrection and sermon of Christ, these also are Hindu and Vedantic. Here I might refer you to a book written by a Russian – Nicholas Notovitch, written in French and translated into English, – entitled – ” The Unknown Life of Jesus.” The work is based upon some manuscripts discovered in a monastery in Tibet. The author visited the place, and when you have read the book, you cannot but realize the truth of the statements. It gives you an account of that part of Jesus’ life of which the Bible says nothing, from the eighth to the thirtieth year of his life, which were spent in India. These facts may or may not be so, but indirectly the knowledge could come to Jerusalem. The fact remains, however, that his doings as well as his teachings are only a faint re – echo of the Vedanta, the philosophy of India. In your Bible you find the statement – “Love your neighbour as yourself,” but no reason or rationale is given for it. As the blessed Herbert Spencer says, when we simply tell a child to do this, we enslave the higher nature in the rational animal, for man is called by the logicians a rational animal. “We enslave the mind of a child when we tell it to do a thing on authority. A child will do a thing you want him to do on his own authority. The moment you say, ‘do’ or ‘don’t,’ you enslave the mind. Once a child was asked, “What is your name?” He said, “I don’t know, but my mother calls me ‘ Don’t’.” When you say, “Love thy neighbour as thyself,” you ought to tell me how and why I ought to do this. How shall I love my neighbour as myself, when the Ministers and Doctors of Divinity hate the Hindus from the bottom of their heart. Under such circumstances, how is it possible for us to love our neighbours as ourselves? These categorical imperatives have been preached in this world, and the world is the same today as ever. Confucius, Zoroaster and Krishna preached, and the world still remains with its sins. Is the world any happier today? Somebody has said that the world is like the tail of a dog. Put the tail of a dog in a bamboo case for a period of twelve years, and when you remove the case, the tail will curl as ever. The same illustration will hold with the world.
Try to straighten it out, but when you let it go again, it will go back to its old ways. This reminds me of a story. A man once went to a pseudo – Swami asking for advice as to how to win the love of a girl. This pseudo – Swami says, “I will tell you a mantram, a certain formula to repeat. Repeat it continually and you will win the love of the girl. But while you are repeating it, let not the thought of a monkey come into your mind.” This man began to repeat the formula to himself, but, Oh, as ill – luck would have it, the monkey was all the time with him. Then he came back to this quasi Swami and said, “I would never in my life have thought of a monkey if you had not told me not to think of a monkey!” So it is, blessed ones, it is those “dont’s’ and ‘dos,’ ‘thou shalts’ and ‘thou shalt ‘nots,’ which are not the commandments of God. So you know why animals, cows, buffaloes, even lions and tigers are cleaner than men. They have no prohibitive laws for the control of what are called the animal passions. In the commandment – ‘Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself’, we see again that the mark is missed. Man will not receive anything on another’s authority. Why shall I love my neighbour as myself. In the Vedantic Philosophy, in nine different ways this truth is brought home to us most gloriously, most wonderfully, and most splendidly. The readers of the ancient Vedantic Scriptures are told that thy real Self is the self of all; thy neighbour is thy own self. When I know that my neighbour is myself, then naturally I love him as my own self. It is put here in a clearer form than in the Bible. We ought to know the laws of Psychology, for such is the Psychology of the human mind. Tell a child not to touch fire, and he will touch it. But tell a child that if he touches fire, it will burn him, then on his own authority he will never touch it; but never say only, – ‘ Don’t touch the fire.’ When you simply tell me to love my neighbour as myself, I will not do it. But when you tell me that my neighbour is myself, then I can’t help treating him as myself.
I have told you the origin of the great spiritualistic organism in the European world. Let me pass on a little further.
These grand teachings which only came through the Gospel were lost in Europe in the Dark Ages, and the world needed a new impulse. Wherefrom did this new impulse come which removed the Dark Ages, and afterwards swept away the Middle Ages? So far as the accepted Christianity was concerned, the Dark Ages were there in spite of it. If you have read History, you will agree with me that the Dark and the Medieval Ages were swept away through what is known as the Renaissance, the Revival of Learning. This Revival was inspired by, the study of the literature of heathen Greece and Rome. It was the heathen literature again which dispelled the Dark and the Middle Ages, and this heathen literature derives its origin from India. There again the new impulse to purify the world came from India. Then I pass to the present – day thought of the world.
Now, sweet ones, what is the new thought of America? This Christian Science, Theosophy, and Spiritualism – what is it? Whether through the Hindu teachers that came disembodied or embodied, or through the writings coming indirectly from Schopenhauer, or through direct channels of the new thought of America, they all came from India. Even the new thought in the political history of the world, what you call radical democracy or socialism, even that I can prove to you is characteristically Vedantic. I have written an Essay on Socialism and Vedanta, and another book – The Rise and Fall of Nations. In these works I have embodied the facts and testimony of the assertions I am making now.
In America, the Father, the prophet, of the *new thought is Emerson. He preached the truth, spirituality, but he made no mercenary use of Spirituality. The truth has been popularized by him. But the spiritual father of Emerson, his inspirer in America, was Henry D. Thoreau. He is more original than Emerson. Another inspirer of Emerson is Carlyle. And where – from have these men – Carlyle, Emerson, Thoreau, and Walt Whitman – got their inspiration? Their inspiration came from several sources. Whence came the writings of men like Kant and Schopenhauer? From no other source than the direct study of the Vedantic literature. I can prove to you that the new impulse given to the world by Carlyle and Ruskin was derived from the philosophical writings of Kant, Schopenhauer and Fichte, and I shall prove to you that the new thought of this country comes from India, because the writings of Kant, Schopenhauer, Fichte, and to some extent of Swedenborg, are directly inspired by Hindu Philosophy. Schopenhauer, in his book, The World Is Will and Idea, says, “In the whole world there is no religion or philosophy so sublime and elevating as the Vedanta (Upanishads). This Vedanta (Upanishads) has been the solace of my life, and it will be the solace of my death.” Could any higher tribute be paid to this philosophy of the Vedanta? In his writings also there are references to the Vedantic philosophy and literature. Again, the historian of Philosophy in France, Victor Cousin, says, “There can be no denying that the ancient Hindus possess the knowledge of the true God. Their philosophy, their thought is so sublime, so elevating, so accurate and true, that any comparison with the writings of the Europeans appears like a Promethean fire stolen from heaven as in the presence of the full glow of the noon – day Sun.” At another place he says: –
“When we read with attention the poetical and philosophical monuments of the East, above all, those of India which are beginning to spread in Europe, we discover there many a truth and truths so profound, and which make such a contrast with the meanness of the result at which the European genius has sometimes stopped that we are constrained to bend the knee before the philosophy of the East, and to see in this cradle of the human race the native land of the highest philosophy.” Schlegel says that in comparison with the Hindu thought, the highest stretches of European philosophy appear like dwarfish pigmies in the presence of grand, majestic Titans. In his work on Indian Language, Literature and Philosophy, he remarks: – “It cannot be denied that the early Indians possessed a knowledge of the true God, all their writings are replete with sentiments and expressions, noble, clear and severely grand, as deeply conceived and reverentially expressed as in any human language in which men have spoken of their God.” And with regard more especially to the Vedantic Philosophy, he says: – “The divine origin of man is continually inculcated to stimulate his efforts to return, to animate him in the struggle and incite him to consider a re – union and re-corporation with Divinity as the one primary object of every action and exertion.” Max Muller says, “If the judgment or the opinion of such a grand philosopher as Schopenhauer require endorsement, I, on the basis of my long life, devoted to the study of almost all religions and philosophies, must humbly endorse it.” He says, “If philosophy or religion is meant to be a preparation for the afterlife, a happy life and happy death, I know of no better preparation for it than the Vedanta.” Again he says, “I am neither ashamed, nor afraid to say that I share his (Schopenhauer’s) enthusiasm for the Vedanta and feel indebted to it for much that has been helpful to me in my passage through life.” Sir Edwin Arnold’s India Revisited, His Song Celestial, his Light of Asia, his Song of Songs, all contain information concerning this subject, to which I refer you. Thoreau, in his Walden and Letters, refers frequently to Vedantic writings; also in his Excursion he refers to Indian writings. The source of all the new thought in America comes from Thoreau, who admitted that he got his inspiration from the Hindus. Emerson, when about to return to America after a trip to England, was attended by Carlyle to the railway station. As a present Carlyle gave him one of the early translations of the Bhagavad Gita by Edwin Jones. This work had been translated into Latin, French, and German even before the days of Kant. Kant revived the philosophical thought of Europe, and as the basis of his philosophy of the * a priori’ character of time, space and causation, he is indebted to India.
In the first edition of the work by Mrs. Eddy, there are quotations from the Bhagavad Gita but in the later editions they were expunged. God’s word, if it is God’s word at all, must be clear, plain, and intelligent.
I don’t mean to say that the people here are plagiarists or imitators. I maintain that it is just as well for the people of America to rediscover by themselves as to get these truths from India. “There is nothing new under the Sun.”
Real, genuine socialism is today actually in existence among the Swamis in the Himalayas. Edward Carpenter of England obtained his socialism from the Hindus. So all your new thought is the old, antiquated thought of the Hindus. In order to get to the genuine centre, the whole truth and all the new thought, Blessed ones, you have yet to wait a little and get more knowledge from India. Most of those wonderful writings have not yet been translated into your language, such as the Yoga Vasishtha which deals with all the new thought of America. This work is clear, comprehensive, logical and is written in real true poetry. Such is the manner in which our Mathematical works are written, and thus Mathematics is made a pleasure, instead of the bug-bear it is to most students.
In this world your work should be done with pleasure. It reminds me of a garden in which the poor labouring coolies are breaking stones on the paths. Their hearts are heavy; they are drudging all the time. On the lawn of the garden in which these coolies are working are princes playing tennis. Their work is a pleasure, for in their pleasure they are sweating possibly harder than the coolies. Let your attitude in this world be that of the princes playing tennis. Their work is a pleasure. Not that you have to give up work and labour, but that your spirit in and towards your work should be changed, and work and pleasure you will always be doing. You will be full of another kind of bliss, centred in your Godliness. When you are perched on the summit of the beautiful poplars and cedars of your divine nature, on the divine nature of this beautiful, spiritual thought, godly music and wonderful work will be falling and coming from your soul. That which is forced is never forcible. As light emanates from the Sun, as fragrance emanates from the rose, as coolness emanates from the beautiful snowy peaks, mountain streams and springs, so let peace, joy, love, and light proceed from you, O light of lights. OM, peace be with you!
OM! OM!! OM!!!