The Original Impetus Carries It

The true teacher is one who can throw his whole force into the tendency of the taught. Without real sympathy we can never teach well. Give up the notion that every man is a responsible being; only the perfect man is responsible. The ignorant have drunk deep of the cup of delusion and are not sane. You, who know, must have patience with these. Have nothing but love for them and find out the disease that has made them see the world in a wrong light; then help them to cure it and see aright. Remember always that the free have free will; all the rest are in bondage and are not responsible for what they do. Will as will is bound. The water when melting on the top of the Himalayas is free, but becoming the river it is bound by the banks; yet the original impetus carries it to the sea and it regains its freedom.

Some imaginations help to break the bondage of the rest. The whole universe is imagination, but one set of imaginations will cure another set. Those which tell us that there is sin and sorrow and death in the world are terrible; but the other set, which says ever: ‘I am holy. There is a God. There is no pain’ — these are good and help to break the bondage of the others. The highest imagination, which can break all the links of the chain, is that of the Personal God.

‘Om Tat Sat’ is the only thing beyond maya; but the Personal God exists eternally. As long as Niagara Falls exists, the rainbow will exist; but the water continually flows away. The Falls is the universe, and the rainbow is the Personal God, and both are eternal. While the universe exists, God must exist. God creates the universe and the universe creates God, and both are eternal. Maya is neither existence nor nonexistence. Both Niagara Falls and the rainbow are eternally changing—Brahman seen through maya. . . . Vedanta takes maya as a whole and sees beyond it the nondual Brahman.

~ Swami Vivekananda

Inspired Talks, August 5, 1895