Bhagavad Gita, Sri Ramakrishna, Swami Vivekananda

Vivekananda: Chicago Parliament of Religions

The Life of Swami Vivekananda (III): Chicago Parliament of Religions. Organization and consolidation of American work. Beginning of the Globalization of Vedanta.

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Life of Swami Vivekananda (III): United States. Chicago Parliament of Religions

  1. Trip and arrival of the Swami to America
  2. The Chicago Parliament of Religions (1893)
  3. The Chicago Parliament of Religions (1893)
  4. Swami Vivekananda's full speech at the World Parliament of Religions in Chicago
  5. His success as a speaker in the United States
  6. Various experiences as a preacher
  7. The beginning of work in America
  8. Essays on Raja Yoga Raja Yoga and Jnana Yoga (Knowledge)
    1. Yoga Sutras of Patanjali
  9. The Song of the Sannyasin

Bhagavad Gita in Spanish Vivekananda: Parlamento de las Religiones de Chicago Bhagavad Gita in Portuguese Vivekananda: Parlamento das Religiões de Chicago.

After the Mahasamadhi of Sri Ramakrishna and the illumination of Cape Comorin, Swami Vivekananda begins his first trip to the United States where he will masterfully participate in the Parliament of Religions in Chicago.

The Swami traveled by ship to the United States stopping in Ceylon, present-day Malaysia, Singapore, China (Canton and Hong Kong), Japan, Vancouver (Canada) finally arriving in Chicago. In these countries he visited temples of different religions, allowing him to delve deeper into the different doctrines.

In Chicago he had serious financial problems, even sleeping on the street and being threatened on several occasions. He also had problems obtaining accreditation in the Parliament of Religions, but a professor at Harvard University helped him.

The life of a Sannyasin, is hard, Vivekananda slept in a cardboard box in the open on the eve of Parliament, and he also went begging from house to house. And so he found Mrs. Hale who helped him and they became close friends.

On September 11, 1893, the Parliament of Religions in Chicago was inaugurated. Representatives from all over the world of the main religions participated: Hinduism, Jainism, Buddhism, Judaism, Confucianism, Islam or Christianity.

When Swami Vivekananda, who had always refused to speak in public and had absolutely nothing in writing, had his turn to speak, he invoked, like the good Jnani Yogi that he was, the Goddess of Knowledge: Saraswati. And after the next short and famous phrase “Sisters and brothers of America…” he dazzled the audience.

The Swami spoke about the concept of Hinduism as “the Mother of Religions”, the universality of religious truths and the equality of the Goal of all religious realizations, and Vedanta as a universal religion embracing all faiths (“Hinduism cannot live without Buddhism nor Buddhism without Hinduism).

Vedanta, the essence of Jnana Yoga, an alternative to the deep spiritual crisis of the West

Swami Vivekananda referred to Hinduism's Sanatana Dharma as:

Hinduism: accumulated treasure formed by spiritual laws discovered by different people. Swami Vivekananda

Swamiji affirmed the right of every man to choose his own path, explained the key concepts of Hindu orthodoxy and Vedanta.

The right of each soul to choose his own way, and to seek God in his own way.

Bhagavad Gita X-11: the Science of Knowledge of Atman (Yoga Philosophy)

“A Christian should not become a Hindu or a Buddhist, nor should a Hindu or a Buddhist become a Christian. But each must assimilate the spirit of the others and yet retain his individuality and grow according to his own law of growth.”

And based on the message of “Fight, O Arjuna” from the Bhagavad Gita he said:

“Help and not Fight, Assimilation and not Destruction, Harmony and Peace and not Dissension”

This speech by Vivekananda at the Parliament of Religions in Chicago is crucial both in inter-religious dialogue and in Swamiji's life.

The Vivekananda media phenomenon began, and also the globalization of Yoga, Vedanta and the Bhagavad Gita.

After this success, he began a frenetic tour of conferences, between twelve and fourteen a week, throughout the United States: New York, Boston, Baltimore, Washington.. In his conferences he usually carried a Bible as well as a copy of the Bhagavad Gita.

Vivekananda passionately studies Western industrial and economic systems, which he will later try to adapt in India. He also makes harsh criticisms of both Christian civilization and the role of Christian missionaries in India. He publishes his first essay: “East and West”, where he expresses his commitment to surrender to both the West and the East.

At this time he develops even more extraordinary powers as a Yogi, being able to read men's minds. In India, Vivekananda's successes are beginning to be known.

The first Vedanta center in New York opens where free training and meditation is provided. It was at a critical moment that he wrote two of his most famous essays on Raja Yoga and Jnana Yoga, in which these Yogas were explained in terms of Western philosophy. He also composes his moving “The Song of the Sannyasin”. Vivekananda converts the first European American Sannyasins such as a famous French soprano.

All this incessant pace of work causes significant fatigue in Vivekananda. He goes on a seven-week retreat with his American followers. At that time Swamiji entered a state of Nirvikalpa Samadhi.

Swami Vivekananda met important people, such as Nicholas Tesla, who assured him that the concepts of Kalpas, cycles of Brahma, could be demonstrated mathematically.

Source: “Life of Swami Vivekananda: A biography of his eastern and western disciples”

Translated by Pedro Nonell.

Swami Vivekananda: a number of verses from of the Bhagavad Gita, comments of Sri Ramakrishna etc

The complete content on “The Life of Swami Vivekananda (III): United States. Chicago Parliament of Religions..” (Yoga Philosophy) is only available to students of the Gita Institute

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