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Ramakrishna



Teachings of Ramakrishna

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T he Divine Mother revealed to me in the Kali temple that was She who had become everything. She showed me everything was full of Consciousness. The image was Consciousness, the altar was Consciousness, the water-vessels Consciousness, the door-sill was Consciousness, the marble floor was Consciousness -- all was Consciousness. I found everything inside the room soaked, as It were, in Bliss,

Bliss of God. I saw a wicked man in front of the Kali temple; but in him also I saw the power of the Divine Mother vibrating. That was why I fed a cat with the food that was to be offered to the Divine Mother. I clearly perceived that all this was the Divine Mother-even the cat.





Hinduism 3875 | 
Nikhilananda, 1942; pp. 15-16 







I felt as if my heart were being squeezed like a wet towel. I was overpowered with a great restlessness and a fear that it might not be my lot to realize Her in this life. I could not bear the separation from Her any longer. Life seemed to be not worth living. Suddenly my glance fell on the sword that was kept in the Mother's temple. I determined to put an end to -my -life. When I jumped -up like a madman and seized it, suddenly the blessed Mother revealed Herself. The buildings with their different parts, the temple, and everything else vanished from my sight, leaving no trace whatsoever, and in their stead I saw a limitless, infinite, effulgent Ocean of Consciousness. As far as the eye could see, the shining billows were madly rushing at me from all sides with a terrific Poise, to swallow me up! I was panting for breath. I was caught in the rush and collapsed, unconscious. What was happening in the outside world I did not know; but within me there was a steady flow of undiluted bliss, altogether new, and I felt the presence of the Divine Mother.




Hinduism 3874 | 
Nikhilananda, 1942; pp. 13-14 







T here is the saying: "I don't want to become sugar; I want to eat it." I never feel like saying, "I am Brahman." I say, "Thou art my Lord and I am Thy servant." My desire is to sing God's name and glories. It is very good to look on God as the Master and on oneself as His servant. Further, you see, people speak of the waves as belonging to the Ganges; but no one says that the Ganges belongs to the waves. The feeling "I am He" is not wholesome… He deceives himself as well as others. He cannot understand his own state of mind.




Hinduism 3200 | 
Mahendranath Gupta. The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna. Trans. Swami Nikhilananda. New York: Ramakrishna-Vivekananda Center, 1942, 1948, 1958, pp. 230-231 







I saw the visions described in the scriptures. Sometimes I saw the universe filled with sparks of fire. Sometimes I saw all the quarters glittering with light, as if the world were a lake of mercury. Sometimes I saw the world as if made of liquid silver. Sometimes again, I saw all the quarters illumined as if with the light of Roman candles.




Hinduism 3198 | 
Mahendranath Gupta. The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna. Trans. Swami Nikhilananda. New York: Ramakrishna-Vivekananda Center, 1942, 1948, 1958, p. 333 







W hen I was ten or eleven years old … I first experienced samadhi. There are certain characteristics of God-vision. One sees light, feels joy, and experiences the upsurge of a great current in one's chest, like the bursting of a rocket.




Hinduism 3197 | 
Mahendranath Gupta. The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna. Trans. Swami Nikhilananda. New York: Ramakrishna-Vivekananda Center, 1942, 1948, 1958, p. 218 







V ijay:
Sir, why are we bound like this? Why don't we see God?
Ramakrishna:
Maya is nothing but the egotism of the embodied soul. This egotism has covered everything like a veil. "All troubles come to an end when the ego dies." If by God's grace a man but once realizes that he is not the doer, then he at once becomes a jivanmukta: though living in the body, he is liberated. He has nothing else to fear.
This maya, that is to say, the ego, is like a cloud. The sun cannot be seen on account of a thin patch of cloud; when that disappears one sees the sun. If by the guru's grace one's ego vanishes, then one sees God.





Hinduism 3196 | 
Mahendranath Gupta. The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna. Trans. Swami Nikhilananda. New York: Ramakrishna-Vivekananda Center, 1942, 1948, 1958, pp. 226-227 







B rahmo devotee:
Is spiritual knowledge impossible without a guru?
Ramakrishna:
Satchidananda alone is the Guru. If a man in the form of a guru awakens spiritual consciousness in you, then know for certain that it is God the Absolute who has assumed that human form for your sake. The guru is like a companion who leads you by the hand. After realizing God, one loses the distinction between the guru and the disciple. The relationship between them remains as long as the disciple does not see God.





Hinduism 3195 | 
Mahendranath Gupta. The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna. Trans. Swami Nikhilananda. New York: Ramakrishna-Vivekananda Center, 1942, 1948, 1958, p. 253 







R amakrishna:
The roof is clearly visible, but extremely hard to reach.
Narendra:
Yes sir.
Ramakrishna:
But if someone who has already reached it drops down a rope, he can pull another person up.





Hinduism 3194 | 
Mahendranath Gupta. The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna. Trans. Swami Nikhilananda. New York: Ramakrishna-Vivekananda Center, 1942, 1948, 1958, p. 488 







H ave faith in the guru's words, and work. If you have no guru, then pray to God with a longing heart. He will let you know what He is like.




Hinduism 3193 | 
Mahendranath Gupta. The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna. Trans. Swami Nikhilananda. New York: Ramakrishna-Vivekananda Center, 1942, 1948, 1958, p. 352 







B e His servant, surrender yourself to Him, and then pray to Him.




Hinduism 3192 | 
Mahendranath Gupta. The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna. Trans. Swami Nikhilananda. New York: Ramakrishna-Vivekananda Center, 1942, 1948, 1958, p. 159 (p. 159) 







G od has put you in the world. What can you do about it? Resign everything to Him. Surrender yourself at His feet. Then there will be no more confusion.




Hinduism 3191 | 
Mahendranath Gupta. The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna. Trans. Swami Nikhilananda. New York: Ramakrishna-Vivekananda Center, 1942, 1948, 1958, p. 353 







D evotee:
How can I develop love for God"
Ramakrishna:
Repeat His name, and sins will disappear. Thus you will destroy lust, anger, the desire for creature comforts, and so on.
Devotee:
How can I take delight in God's name?
Ramakrishna:
Pray to God with a yearning heart that you may take delight in His name. He will certainly fulfil your heart's desire.





Hinduism 3190 | 
Mahendranath Gupta. The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna. Trans. Swami Nikhilananda. New York: Ramakrishna-Vivekananda Center, 1942, 1948, 1958, p. 246 







G od has made different religions and creeds to suit different aspirants.




Hinduism 3189 | 
Mahendranath Gupta. The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna. Trans. Swami Nikhilananda. New York: Ramakrishna-Vivekananda Center, 1942, 1948, 1958, p. 316 







T he way of love is as good as the way of knowledge… But as long as God keeps the feeling of ego in us, it is easier to follow the path of love.




Hinduism 3188 | 
Mahendranath Gupta. The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna. Trans. Swami Nikhilananda. New York: Ramakrishna-Vivekananda Center, 1942, 1948, 1958, p. 156 







T hose who cannot give up attachment to worldly things and who find no means to shake off the feeling of I, should rather cherish the idea, "I am God's servant; I am His devotee." One can also realize God by following the path of devotion.




Hinduism 3187 | 
Mahendranath Gupta. The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna. Trans. Swami Nikhilananda. New York: Ramakrishna-Vivekananda Center, 1942, 1948, 1958, p. 155 







I t will be very good if you can practise unselfish love for God. A man who has such love says: "O Lord, I do not seek salvation, fame, wealth, or cure of disease. None of these do I seek. I want only Thee." Many are the people who come to a rich man with various desires. But if someone comes to him simply out of love, not wanting any favour, then the rich man feels attracted to him.




Hinduism 3186 | 
Mahendranath Gupta. The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna. Trans. Swami Nikhilananda. New York: Ramakrishna-Vivekananda Center, 1942, 1948, 1958, p. 284 







T here is a great deal of difference between daya, compasion, and maya, attachment. Daya is good, but maya is not. Maya is love for one's relatives -- one's wife, children, brother, sister, nephew, father, and mother. But daya is the same love for all created beings without any distinction.




Hinduism 3185 | 
Mahendranath Gupta. The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna. Trans. Swami Nikhilananda. New York: Ramakrishna-Vivekananda Center, 1942, 1948, 1958, p. 266 







I ask people to renounce mentally. I do not ask them to give up the world. If one lives unattached and seeks God with sincerity, then one is able to attain Him




Hinduism 3184 | 
Mahendranath Gupta. The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna. Trans. Swami Nikhilananda. New York: Ramakrishna-Vivekananda Center, 1942, 1948, 1958, pp. 338-339 







L esson of the Gita is: "O man, renounce everything and seek God alone." Whether a man is a monk or a householder, he has to shake off all attachment from his mind.




Hinduism 3183 | 
Mahendranath Gupta. The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna. Trans. Swami Nikhilananda. New York: Ramakrishna-Vivekananda Center, 1942, 1948, 1958, p. 157 







I f there are no desires, the mind naturally looks up toward God.




Hinduism 3182 | 
Mahendranath Gupta. The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna. Trans. Swami Nikhilananda. New York: Ramakrishna-Vivekananda Center, 1942, 1948, 1958, p. 346 







N o salvation is possible for a man as long as he has desire, as long as he hankers for worldly things.




Hinduism 3181 | 
Mahendranath Gupta. The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna. Trans. Swami Nikhilananda. New York: Ramakrishna-Vivekananda Center, 1942, 1948, 1958, p. 325 







E veryone can attain Knowledge. There are two entities: jivatma, the individual soul, and Paramatma, the Supreme Soul. Through prayer all individual souls can be united to the Supreme Soul.




Hinduism 3180 | 
Mahendranath Gupta. The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna. Trans. Swami Nikhilananda. New York: Ramakrishna-Vivekananda Center, 1942, 1948, 1958, p. 247 







K eshab:
Sir, if one gave up the I, nothing whatsoever would remain.
Ramakrishna:
I am not asking you to give up all of the I. You should give up only the "unripe I." The "unripe I" makes one feel: "I am the doer. These are my wife and children. I am a teacher." Renounce this "unripe I" and keep the "ripe I" which will make you feel that you are God's servant, His devotee, and that God is the Doer and you are His instrument.





Hinduism 3179 | 
Mahendranath Gupta. The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna. Trans. Swami Nikhilananda. New York: Ramakrishna-Vivekananda Center, 1942, 1948, 1958, pp. 266-267 







T he ego is like a stick that seems to divide the water in two. It makes you feel that you are one and I am another. When the ego disappears in samadhi one realizes Brahman as one's own inner consciousness.




Hinduism 3178 | 
Mahendranath Gupta. The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna. Trans. Swami Nikhilananda. New York: Ramakrishna-Vivekananda Center, 1942, 1948, 1958, p. 284 







G irish:
Narendra says that God is beyond our words and thought.
Ramakrishna:
That is not altogether true. He is, no doubt, unknowable by this ordinary mind, but He can indeed be known by the pure mind. The mind and intellect become pure the moment they are free from attachment…





Hinduism 3177 | 
Mahendranath Gupta. The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna. Trans. Swami Nikhilananda. New York: Ramakrishna-Vivekananda Center, 1942, 1948, 1958, p. 372 







O ne cannot get true feeling about God from the study of books. This feeling is something very different from book-learning. Books, the scriptures, and science appear as mere dirt and straw after the realization of God.




Hinduism 3176 | 
Mahendranath Gupta. The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna. Trans. Swami Nikhilananda. New York: Ramakrishna-Vivekananda Center, 1942, 1948, 1958, p. 353 







W hat will a man gain by merely reasoning about the words of the scriptures? Ah, the fools! They reason themselves to death over information about the path. They never take the plunge. What a pity!




Hinduism 3175 | 
Mahendranath Gupta. The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna. Trans. Swami Nikhilananda. New York: Ramakrishna-Vivekananda Center, 1942, 1948, 1958, p. 332 







T here are three classes of devotees. The lowest one says, "God is up there," and he points to heaven. The mediocre devotee says that God dwells in the heart as the "Inner Controller." But the highest devotee says: "God alone has become everything. All things that we perceive are so many forms of God."




Hinduism 3174 | 
Mahendranath Gupta. The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna. Trans. Swami Nikhilananda. New York: Ramakrishna-Vivekananda Center, 1942, 1948, 1958, pp. 292-293 







A man cannot live on the roof a long time. He comes down again. Those who realize Brahman in samadhi come down also and find that it is Brahman that has become the universe and its living beings… The ego does not vanish altogether. The man coming down from samadhi perceives that it is Brahman that has become the ego, the universe, and all living beings. This is known as vijnana.




Hinduism 3173 | 
Mahendranath Gupta. The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna. Trans. Swami Nikhilananda. New York: Ramakrishna-Vivekananda Center, 1942, 1948, 1958, p. 156 







G od dwells in all beings. But you may be intimate only with good people; you must keep away from the evil-minded. God is even in the tiger; but you cannot embrace the tiger on that account (Laughter.) You may say, "Why run away from a tiger, which is also a manifestation of God? The answer to that is: Those who tell you to run away are also manifestations of God; why shouldn't you listen to them?




Hinduism 3172 | 
Mahendranath Gupta. The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna. Trans. Swami Nikhilananda. New York: Ramakrishna-Vivekananda Center, 1942, 1948, 1958, pp. 131-132 







I n the Vedas creation is likened to the spider's web. The spider brings the web out of itself and then remains in it. God is the container of the universe and also what is contained in it.




Hinduism 3171 | 
Mahendranath Gupta. The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna. Trans. Swami Nikhilananda. New York: Ramakrishna-Vivekananda Center, 1942, 1948, 1958, p. 194 







A s Consciousness, (God) pervades the entire universe of the living and the non-living.




Hinduism 3170 | 
Mahendranath Gupta. The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna. Trans. Swami Nikhilananda. New York: Ramakrishna-Vivekananda Center, 1942, 1948, 1958, p. 272 







I t is easier to attain God by following the path of devotion.




Hinduism 3169 | 
Mahendranath Gupta. The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna. Trans. Swami Nikhilananda. New York: Ramakrishna-Vivekananda Center, 1942, 1948, 1958, pp. 209-210 







T hink of Brahman, Existence-Knowledge-Bliss Absolute, as a shoreless ocean. Through the cooling influence, as it were, of the bhakta's love, the water is frozen at places into blocks of ice. In other words, God now and then assumes various forms for His lovers and reveals Himself to them as a Person. But with the rising of the Sun of Knowledge, the blocks of ice melt. Then one doesn't feel any more that God is a Person, nor does one see God's forms. What He is cannot be described. Who will describe Him? He who would do so disappears. He cannot find his I any more.




Hinduism 3168 | 
Mahendranath Gupta. The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna. Trans. Swami Nikhilananda. New York: Ramakrishna-Vivekananda Center, 1942, 1948, 1958, p. 209 







B rahman alone is real and the world illusory. All these names and forms are illusory, like a dream.




Hinduism 3167 | 
Mahendranath Gupta. The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna. Trans. Swami Nikhilananda. New York: Ramakrishna-Vivekananda Center, 1942, 1948, 1958, pp. 191-192 







T hat which is Shakti is also Brahman. That which has form, again, is without form. That which has attributes, again, has no attributes. Brahman is Shakti; Shakti is Brahman. They are not two. These are only two aspects, male and female, of the same Reality, Existence-Knowledge-Bliss Absolute.




Hinduism 2687 | 
The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna as translated into English by Swami Nikhilananda and published by the Ramakrishna-Vivekananda Center of New York, Copyright 1942, by Swami Nikhilananda. 







T he Primordial Power is ever at play. She is creating, preserving, and destroying in play, as it were. This power is called Kali. Kali is … Brahman and Brahman is … Kali. It is one and the same Reality. When we think of it as inactive, that is to say, not engaged in the acts of creation, preservation, and destruction, then we call it Brahman. But when It engages in these activities, then we call it Kali or Shakti. The Reality is one and the same; the difference is in name and form….




Hinduism 2686 | 
The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna as translated into English by Swami Nikhilananda and published by the Ramakrishna-Vivekananda Center of New York, Copyright 1942, by Swami Nikhilananda. 







W hatever we see or think about is the manifestation of the Mother, of the Primordial Energy, the Primal Consciousness. Creation, preservation, and destruction, living beings and the universe, and further, meditation and the meditator, bhakti [devotion] and prema [divine love]-all these are manifestations of the glory of that Power….




Hinduism 2685 | 
The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna as translated into English by Swami Nikhilananda and published by the Ramakrishna-Vivekananda Center of New York, Copyright 1942, by Swami Nikhilananda. 







G od reveals Himself to a devotee who feels drawn to Him by the combined force of these three attractions: the attraction of worldly possessions for the worldly man, the child's attraction for its mother, and the husband's attraction for the chaste wife. If one feels drawn to him by the combined force of these three attractions, then one can attain him.




Hinduism 2684 | 
The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna as translated into English by Swami Nikhilananda and published by the Ramakrishna-Vivekananda Center of New York, Copyright 1942, by Swami Nikhilananda. 







I n like manner, one who constantly thinks of God can know His real nature; he alone knows that God reveals Himself to seekers in various forms and aspects. God has attributes; then again He has none.




Hinduism 2680 | 
The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna as translated into English by Swami Nikhilananda and published by the Ramakrishna-Vivekananda Center of New York, Copyright 1942, by Swami Nikhilananda. 







T ruth is one;
only it is called by different names.
All people are seeking the same Truth;
the variance is due to climate, temperament, and name.





Hinduism 2679 | 
The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna as translated into English by Swami Nikhilananda and published by the Ramakrishna-Vivekananda Center of New York, Copyright 1942, by Swami Nikhilananda. 





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