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Swami Vivekananda: A tale of resilience and inspiration



By Diya Nair

On 26th October, our teacher played a movie for us that was dedicated to the life of Swami Vivekananda. By the end of it, I was so inspired by his life that the word “resilience” became synonymous with his name. Faced with multiple challenges throughout his life, he rose like a phoenix every time he fell – with great courage and a positive attitude. I remember this one part of his entire life story very clearly.

He had just arrived in America from India, was quite poor, and didn’t have much money to spend lavishly and live comfortably. Whenever he stepped out, he would only wear his native clothes – a kurta and a turban. Due to his financial state and dressing style, people would often mock him and consider him an inferior person. Despite public humiliation and disrespectful treatment, he believed in spiritualism and never lost his composure.

After many days, he got an opportunity to prove himself. He was representing India and Hinduism at the Parliament of the World’s Religions, the first of its kind, with delegates from all over the world. Though nervous, when it was his turn to speak, he stood up and said, “My brothers and sisters of America.” When these initial words were spoken, the crowd couldn’t help but give a big round of applause for his generosity. When he ended his speech, however, the crowd gave a standing ovation. Such was the impact of his profound words. From that day, he earned a lot of fame.

But, being as humble and down-to-earth as he was, he never forgot the purpose of his life. Looking back at Swami Vivekananda’s life chronicles teaches me to get up and fight every time I fall – it teaches me the real meaning of “resilience”.

The Musical Interview with Anamika Jha