Why I Hate Vivekananda – 16 Castiest Quotes of Vivekananda


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Hindutva organizations are promoting Vivekananda as a youth icon, here are a few quotes from Mr. Vivekanada which shows his casteist mindset. Text in bold are statements from Mr. Vivekananda and references are at the end of the article.

1) I do not propose any leveling of castes. Caste is a very good thing. Caste is the plan we want to follow.

2) The plan in India is to make everybody a Brahmin, the Brahmin being the ideal of humanity.

 

3) Indian caste is better than the caste which prevails in Europe or America.

→ Which caste system prevails in Europe or America Mr. Vivekananda? Here he glorifies caste system in India!

4) Where would you be if there were no caste? Where would be your learning and other things, if there were no caste? There would be nothing left for the Europeans to study if caste had never existed!

→ We would have been better off without caste, our situations would have been better. What learning so called caste system gave to Dalits? Caste system taught only discrimination.

→ Yeah, you guys invented caste system so that Europeans have something to study because poor Europeans didn’t have anything to study!

5) Caste should not go; but should only be readjusted occasionally. Within the old structure is to be found life enough for the building of two hundred thousand new ones. It is sheer nonsense to desire the abolition of caste.

6) Brainy Vivekananda suggested to lower castes that are fighting and writing against higher castes is of no use, learn Sanskrit and you problems will be solved! Such a brainy was our Swami!

7) The Brahminhood is the ideal of humanity in India, as wonderfully put forward by Shankaracharya at the beginning of his commentary on the Gitâ, where he speaks about the reason for Krishna’s coming as a preacher for the preservation of Brahminhood, of Brahminness.

→  Dr. Ambedkar was against Brahminhood and Brahminism, which is a mentality of people that makes them to suppress and discriminate. Vivekananda supported Brahminism.

8) This Brahmin, the man of God, he who has known Brahman, the ideal man, the perfect man, must remain; he must not go.

–> Yes, Vivekananda is against anyone fighting casteism, because fighting casteism is fighting against Brahmins, who are, of course, according to him, Gods on earth.

9) This Brahmin, the man of God, he who has known Brahman, the ideal man, the perfect man, must remain; he must not go. And with all the defects of the caste now, we know that we must all be ready to give to the Brahmins this credit, that from them have come more men with real Brahminness in them than from all the other castes. That is true. That is the credit due to them from all the other castes.

–> Yes, Vivekananda is against anyone fighting casteism, because fighting casteism is fighting against Brahmins, who are, of course, according to him, Gods on earth.

10) In India, even the lowest caste never does any hard work. They generally have an easy lot compared to the same class in other nations; and as to ploughing, they never do it.

–> Dalits and Shudras, in Vivekananda’s opinion, do no work. The fields plough themselves, by magic! And only hard work is done by Brahmins sitting in A.C. Temples and earning millions, sitting in A.C. is very tough work!

11) Why is India not a superpower? Of course, because we “abolished caste”:

“Then what was the cause of India’s downfall? — The giving up of this idea of caste. As Gitâ says, with the extinction of caste the world will be destroyed. Now does it seem true that with the stoppage of these variations the world will be destroyed…Therefore what I have to tell you, my countrymen, is this: that India fell because you prevented and abolished caste… Let Jati have its sway; break down every barrier in the way of caste, and we shall rise.”

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12) So what is the basis of the Indian’s social order? It is the caste law. I am born for the caste, I live for the caste. I do not mean myself, because, having joined an Order, we are outside. I mean those that live in civil society. Born in the caste, the whole life must be lived according to caste regulation.

13) Now look at Europe. When it succeeded in giving free scope to caste and took away most of the barriers that stood in the way of individuals, each developing his caste — Europe rose. In America, there is the best scope for caste (real Jati) to develop, and so the people are great.

–> Here Mr. Vivekananda again glorifies the caste system! First thing first, Mr. Vivekananda, there was/is no caste in western societies.  

14) “As Manu says, all these privileges and honours are given to the Brahmin, because “with him is the treasury of virtue”. He must open that treasury and distribute its valuables to the world. It is true that he was the earliest preacher to the Indian races, he was the first to renounce everything in order to attain to the higher realisation of life before others could reach to the idea. It was not his fault that he marched ahead of the other caste. Why did not the other castes so understand and do as he did? Why did they sit down and be lazy, and let the Brahmins win the race?”

–> Vivekananda is a defender of Manu, the “great” law-giver, and blames the lower castes for their sorry lot. Is it surprising that most of the followers of the cult of Vivekananda are high caste Hindus?

15) The only safety, I tell you men who belong to the lower castes, the only way to raise your condition is to study Sanskrit, and this fighting and writing and frothing against the higher castes is in vain…

–> Vivekananda doesn’t want that Dalits write against their oppressors and he wants that Dalits keep on suffering silently! Lower castes fight is for equality and Sanskrit is a language of discrimination and it originated to maintain the caste discrimination. How learning Sanskrit will help lower castes get jobs, respect and dignity and how it will solve the problem of caste discrimination? I am not able to understand, can you?

16) To the non-Brahmin castes I say, wait, be not in a hurry. Do not seize every opportunity of fighting the Brahmin, because, as I have shown, you are suffering from your own fault.

–> Vivekananda blames lower castes for their suffering. Yeah, as if while studying, lower castes themselves poured lead in their own ears, cut their own tongue and plucked their own eyes after reading!

References – 

  • Swami Vivekananda, “The Abroad and the Problems at Home”, The Hindu, Madras, February 1987, in “Interviews”, The Complete Works of Swami Vivekananda, Volume 5, Access it from here.
  • Swami Vivekananda, in “The Future of India”, Delivered at Victoria Hall, Madras, in “Lectures from Colombo to Almora”, Complete Works of Swami Vivekananda, Volume 3, Access it from here.
  • Swami Vivekananda, in “Women of India”, Delivered at the Shakespeare Club House, in Pasadena, California, on January 18, 1900, in “Lectures and Discourses”, Complete Works of Swami Vivekananda, Volume 8, Access it from here.
  • Swami Vivekananda, in “A Plan of Work for India”, in “Writings: Prose”, The Complete Works of Swami Vivekananda, Volume 4, Access it from here.
  • Vivekananda’s Ideological Yatra

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31 Comments

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  1. 1
    Ravi

    – “The plan in India is to make everybody a Brahmin, the Brahmin being the ideal of humanity.” That is a positive statement!!! everyone generally strive to be a learned person in ones field…such knowledgeable persons be it in any field should be respected & have elevated status in society.

    • 2
      Velivada

      Positive? Really? Then why not to say that plan is to make everyone untouchable or shudra as these are the varans who work hard not brahmins who just sit in temples and beg!

  2. 4
    Nachiket

    Do hate Vivekananda for the statements he made. But don’t selectively put his quotes out of context. And the ‘Brahmin’ he mentions is not caste, but enlightened human being irrespective of caste, and even religion. Don’t misunderstand Brahmin to those born in so called Brahmin caste today.

  3. 5
    r.c.vivek

    Swami Vivekanand was shudra hence he was objected to wear saffron cloths and became saint and not allow to go out side of India but he went hence all Brahmins were against him then Swami Vivekanad said India can not develop in the presence of Brahmins hence put Brahmins under feet of your shoe then Brahmins became against him and he was dis-appeared within short period

  4. 6
    subho ganguly

    There has been more examples not more than 800 to 1000 years ago, in Bengal, that people from shudra has been directed to khsatriya or brahmhana by the King’s order. vide the dynasty of Raja Adishura and Raja Ballalsen and Raja Laxman sen ….The essence of brahmana on the context of being benevolent and purity is acceptable and has been told by Swami Vivekananda. But this social site propagating Marxist ideology simply detoriating the original context as they always do. But they dare to touch some other religious superstitions as because they are probably funded by those. An organised denomination from a bunch of organised partymen. Leave the site and uplift nation…even playing football is better to waste a time here.

  5. 8
    debasis mitra

    I expect more such articles from Velivada.
    I am a Bengali and since childhood has been taught to treat Swami Vivekananda and his master Ramkrishna as gods. On growing up, when I read some of his works and a few [there exists a handful] of his critics, two things became clear to me.
    [1] Swamiji was, plain and simple, a preacher of Vedanta; nothing more than that.
    [2] Vivekananda never uttered anything new. All his views were repeat telecasts of some other Vednatic thinker.
    He was contradiction personified. He opines something today and turns diametrically opposite tomorrow. Every great thinker occasionally did such thing – as a result of his deeper thinking or changed circumstances – but Swamiji exceeded everybody in that field. He contradicted himself on almost every aspect and with fantastic frequency.
    No doubt he was an orator par excellence. Confident and arrogant, he cared neither for its effect nor its explanation.
    Yes. You can say he was perfect ancestor of Mr. Narendra Modi.

  6. 9
    vedamurthy

    Please expose such pseudo personalities which fabricate as great …and also mention the castiesm made by religion or community other than hindu…

  7. 11
    Subhobrata Ganguly

    As for your no 3 point, i may advice you to read the humiliation vivekananda felt in America, which had and still has black and white caste depending on skin colour, himself being of darker complexion. He was refused to eat to beg to sleep at places, which he told the ugliest form of casteism.
    Well, after 71 year of independence and nearly 110 years of vivekananda, caste system is still prevailing in India.
    It’s not the fault of nation. It’s a part of mans’ nature.of being corrupt. But casteism reduced to almost 70 percent in this 100 years which you people never utter, i am curious, why?

    • 12
      ranjan kumar

      of course there are high caste individuals of young are not too much hung up on caste prejudices and stereo types but just a glance at the sunday matrimonials you will know where the society stands today.
      you find bride groom/groom seekers under the cosmopolitan the smallest column but there too you find a clause such as ‘fair skinned only apply’ or ‘lower castes need not apply’ or no ‘ST/SC please. in uk for instance having such clause as ‘no blacks please’ can drag the tabloid to court allegedly for racism.by the way in the uk casteism is equated with racism and interestingly enough the hindu right wing is opposing this.putting pressure on teresa may. even the indian high commission has expressed its displeasure,, india wont be
      embarassed but india will progress

      • 13
        ranjan kumar

        by shying away from the caste question in international forums etc will never solve india’s deep rooted problems.we have to weed out the social corruption before we can get rid of economic corruption. didnt narendra modi mention the corruption in india since 70 yrs in his foreign speeches ?. india doesnt get embarassed if an evil of our society is discussed it will only lead to india’s/including all castes) progress, For no country can ever be considered a developed nation if the majority dont get to eat the development pie/cake.all developed countries have had such problems in the past , but only because they didnt shy away and confronted those issues upfront they leeped forward .

      • 14
        Mahipal Singh

        Casteism is most ugly face of humanity. Its like a leprosy in Hindu religion.iWhen someone hates a caste as a whole , that mean he or she hates those children who are not even born.
        Can any one justify to hate those who are not even born?

        Everyone know that Aryans came here as invaders. They had weapons and original inhabitants were peaceful people. Aryans made them slaves. Aryans then developed VARAN VAYASTHA to suppress them forever in the name of religion. Those whom we call SC/ST/OBC , are original inhabitants of this country in actual and they comprises more than 80% of Country’s population.
        That’s the reason, when question of equality comes, Brahman is always first to oppose it.
        Because if equality comes, they will have to work like others, which they don’t want to do or not capable of doing.
        This system exists only in India. Hinduism is the only religion in the World which is based on INEQUALITY.
        That’s the reason people left it and still leaving it
        Sikh, Jain, Buddhist, christian they all left Hindu relegion.
        If we do not remove this Caste system from our religion, one day we will me in minority in our country as many more people will leave us…. Jai Hind

  8. 16
    Manu

    How every one could become Brahmin when hindu laws denies education to lower caste people? This itself is the example of double stand of hinduism.

  9. 18
    Jason Joseph

    I am deeply hurt, that caste system is still prevalent. Now that the fundamentalists have arrived on the scene, the pride which we have for our country called India, will slowly be watered down by the acts of these so-called Hindutva brigade. If they are so good, or the best or really if they want a better India, why not clean India of casteism from the temples, wells and marriages. Rather than targeting other religion. Mind you we are Indians, India is our country too and no shit brigade can snatch that love for our country.

  10. 19
    Harish

    I think the irony is that though Vivekananda believed that the learned could become “brahmins’ he himself is not considered a brahmin by the brahmins. The caste Hindus who appreciate the caste aspects of Vivekananda should take steps to make him a Brahmin

  11. 20
    r.c.vivek

    As india is having different castes and all are hating to each caste due to caste system in India hence it is not possible to declare as one nation for all hence practically we have been failed to declare one nation .

  12. 22
    Dr A K Biswas

    I request the compiler to insert the precise reference by citing the volume and page alongside publication details. Many would like that details for use in their purposes.

    This is well worth.

    • 23
      Velivada

      Some references are at the end of the article but yeah we will try to put references next to the quotes. Thank you for the feedback.

  13. 25
    Ben

    Reference to each quote would be helpful. Entire works are quoted. But for racy reference, but book and verse would be helpful.
    Also, difficult to understand what is actual quote and what is comment.
    While debunking these well known figures, one should be more careful as skeptics are hard to convince and flay every comment against these people as conspiracy.

  14. 29
    venukmwpb

    Terribly true; nevertheless, ‘progressives’ of all hues perhaps have made it their habit to look the other way, when this kind of critical reading on a few ‘national’ gurus is undertaken

  15. 30
    venukmwpb

    Terribly true; nevertheless, ‘progressives’ of all hues perhaps have made it their habit to look the other way, when this kind of critical reading on a few ‘national’ gurus is undertaken!

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