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Aphorisms of Sri Ramakrishna

ramakrishna

There are two type of people who attain perfection in this world: those who attain the truth and become silent, enjoying it all to themselves without consideration for anyone else; people of the other type get the truth and cannot find pleasure in keeping it to themselves, but cry out in a trumpet voice to all, “Come you all and enjoy the truth with us!”

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This world is like a stage where men perform many acts under various disguises. They do not like to take off the mask, unless they have played for some time. Let them play for a while, and then they will leave off the mask themselves.

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There is nothing to be proud of in money. If you say that you are rich, there are richer and richer men than you, in comparison with whom you are a mere beggar. After dusk when glow-worms make their appearance, they think, “We are giving light to the world.” But when the stars rise, their pride is gone. Then the stars begin to think, “We are shedding light on the universe.” After sometime the moon ascends the sky, and the stars are humiliated and look melancholy. So again the moon begins to be proud and think that by her light the world is lighted, and smiles and bathes in beauty and cheerfulness. But lo! the dawn proclaims the advent of the rising sun on the eastern horizon. Where is the moon now? If they who think themselves rich ponder over these natural facts, they will never, never boast of their riches again.

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God is in all men but all men are not in God; that is the reason why they suffer.

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People partition off their lands by means of boundaries, but no one can partition off the all embracing sky overhead. The indivisible sky surrounds all and includes all. So common man in ignorance says, “My religion is the only one, my religion is the best.” But when his heart is illumined by true knowledge, he knows that above all these wars of sects and sectarians presides the one indivisible, eternal, all-knowing Bliss.

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There are three kinds of love – Unselfish (Sama-arthaa), Mutual (Samanjasaa) and Selfish (Sadhaarni).  The unselfish love is of the highest kind. In mutual love the lover not only wants the happiness of the beloved but has an eye towards his own happiness also. It is middling. The selfish love is the lowest. It only looks towards its own happiness, no matter whether the beloved suffers, weal or woe.

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If you have a mind to live unattached from the world, you should first practice being in solitude for a while – say a year, or six months, or a month, or at least twelve days. During the period of retirement you should meditate constantly upon truth. You should revolve in your mind the thought that there is nothing in the world that you may call your own; those whom you think your own will pass away in no time. Paramatma is verily our own, he’s your all in all. How to obtain him should be your only concern.

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The scale that is heavy bends down, but the lighter scale of the balance rises up. So the man of merit and ability is always humble and meek, but the fool is always puffed up with vanity.

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The mind attached to lust and wealth is like the unripe betel-nut attached to its shell; so long as the betel-nut is not ripe it remains fixed to its shell by its juice, but when the juicy substance dries by the time, the nut becomes detached from its shell and is felt rolling inside the shell, if shaken. So when the juice of attachment to gold and lust is dried up, the man becomes free.

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