5 Minute Quick Read.
[“I only tell you this, that whoever reads this letter will imbibe my spirit! “
– Swami Vivekananda” ]
Vivekananda is an inspiring personality.
He enthralled the audience that listened to him at Chicago in 1893. He inspired hundreds after his return and these lectures are outlined in “Lectures from Colombo to Almora”. His contemporaries like Bal Gangadhar Tilak, Rabindranath Tagore, Sri Aurobindo, and even Industrialist Jamshetji Tata expressed how he was influential. Mahatma Gandhi in Feb, 1921 at Belur, even said that,
I ask you, young men, not to go away empty-handed without imbibing something of the spirit of the place where Swami Vivekananda lived and died”.
His inspiration continues even to this date. I have at least half-dozen close friends who were inspired by his words, writings and are living their life as Monks or are serving full time, the poor and needy. They are walking the path shown by him. There are enumerable examples of how he continues to inspire. For instance, a famous story about Anna Hazare, social activist goes, that he was about to commit suicide and then read the works of Swamiji. It inspired him to pick up rural development and continues to inspire to serve India.
I am always amused by the inspirational power of Swamiji’s words and writings. One can understand the influence on his contemporaries due to direct contact, but how come he continues to inspire people even today?
Recently I came across a behavioral study about the inspiring power of words. Researchers used Poetry as a channel for inspiration. A group wrote Poetry and tested for their level of inspiration. Another group read this poetry and commented on various parameters. Total 36, 020 data points were collected.
Researchers concluded that inspired writers were able to inspire average readers. Readers found poems as more sublime, insightful when writers were more inspired. Surprisingly efforts put into writing or originality of writing weren’t having any effect on the reader. And the only connection between reader and writers were poem!
This kind of explains how Vivekananda continues to inspire. He was highly inspired person. He spoke about his Guru Sri Ramkrishna as,
” My teacher, my master, my hero, my ideal, my God in life “.
He mentioned at one point,
“It is true I believe Ramakrishna Paramahamsa to have been inspired. But then I am myself inspired also. And you are inspired. And your disciples will be; and theirs after them; and so on, to the end of time! “
What he wrote was from the deep truth he experienced. His expressions were just an outcome of his inner pure, inspired state of being. And hence his writings are more than the words, they are medium, the vehicle that continues to inspire and will continue to inspire us.
https://advaitaashrama.org/cw/content.php Complete Works of Swami Vivekananda.