11 February 2014

Swami Vivekananda's Quotes On Pristcraft

Priestcraft is the bane of India.
—Swami Vivekananda
Image source: Wikimedia Commons
Priestcraft is not very much a critical social issue in present India, but it was a national bane of the country for a long time. In this article we are going to make Swami Vivekananda's quotations collection on priestcraft.
  • All the reformers in India made the serious mistake of holding religion accountable for all the horrors of priestcraft and degeneration and went forth with to pull down the indestructible structure, and what was the result? Failure! Beginning from Buddha down to Ram Mohan Roy, everyone made the mistake of holding caste to be a religious institution and tried to pull down religion and caste all together, and failed. But in spite of all the ravings of the priests, caste is simply a crystallised social institution, which after doing its service is now filling the atmosphere of India with its stench, and it can only be removed by giving back to the people their lost social individuality.[Source]
  • Along with this idea of a Personal God comes tyranny and priestcraft.[Source]
  • Any man may do a good deed or make a good gift on the spur of the moment or under the pressure of some superstition or priestcraft; but the real lover of mankind is he who is jealous of none.[Source]
  • Buddhism was the rebellion of newly-formed Kshatriyas against Vedic priestcraft.[Source]
  • He (Buddha) was also against the tremendous priestcraft. He preached a religion in which there was no motive power, and was perfectly agnostic about metaphysics or theories about God.[Source]
  • Pooh! India is to be raised, the poor are to be fed, education is to be spread, and the evil of priestcraft is to be removed. No priestcraft, no social tyranny! More bread, more opportunity for everybody![Source]
  • Priestcraft and tyranny go hand in hand.[Source]
  • Priestcraft is in its nature cruel and heartless. That is why religion goes down where priestcraft arises.[Source]
  • Priestcraft is the bane of India. Can man degrade his brother, and himself escape degradation?[Source]
  • Priestcraft in the West is not so degenerated, as yet; it is on the whole better than your kind![Source]
  • Root up priestcraft from the old religion, and you get the best religion in the world. Do you understand me?[Source]
  • The impersonal idea is very destructive, it takes away all trade from the priests, churches, and temples. In India there is a famine now, but there are temples in each one of which there are jewels worth a king's ransom! If the priests taught this Impersonal idea to the people, their occupation would be gone. Yet we have to teach it unselfishly, without priestcraft.[Source]
  • The priests only give us an assurance that if we follow them, listen to their admonitions, and walk in the way they mark out for us — then when we die, they will give us a passport to enable us to see the face of God! What are all these heaven ideas but simply modifications of this nonsensical priestcraft?[Source]
  • These Charvakas were allowed to preach from temple to temple, and city to city, that religion was all nonsense, that it was priestcraft, that the Vedas were the words and writings of fools, rogues, and demons, and that there was neither God nor an eternal soul.[Source]
  • These things are the same in every country — priestcraft.[Source]
  • When Alexander the Great, through his military conquests, brought the Mediterranean world in contact with India, the wisdom of India at once found a channel through which to spread over vast portions of Asia and Europe. Buddhist priests went out teaching among the different nations; and as they taught, superstition and priestcraft began to vanish like mist before the sun.[Source]
  • You have heard of the Brahmins and their priestcraft many times, but very few of you have ever stopped to ask what makes this wonderful band of men the rulers of their fellows. They are the poorest of all the classes in the country; and the secret of their power lies in their renunciation. They never covet wealth. Theirs is the poorest priesthood in the world, and therefore the most powerful. Even in this poverty, a Brahmin's wife will never allow a poor man to pass through the village without giving him something to eat. That is considered the highest duty of the mother in India; and because she is the mother it is her duty to be served last; she must see that everyone is served before her turn comes. That is why the mother is regarded as God in India. This particular woman, the mother of our subject, was the very type of a Hindu mother. The higher the caste, the greater the restrictions. The lowest caste people can eat and drink anything they like. But as men rise in the social scale, more and more restrictions come; and when they reach the highest caste, the Brahmin, the hereditary priesthood of India, their lives, as I have said, are very much circumscribed. Compared to Western manners, their lives are of continuous asceticism.[Source]

This page was last updated on: 11 February 2014, 6:16 am IST (UTC+5:30 hours)
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