Sri Ramakrishna said that one should help men not out of compassion, but serve them as manifestations of God. When on a pilgrimage he saw a large number of people suffering from famine at Vaidyanath Dham. Forgetting his pilgrimage, he advised Mathurnath, his care-taker, to serve them.
In the concluding session of the Parliament he declared: “The Christian is not to become a Hindu or a Buddhist, nor a Hindu or a Buddhist to become a Christian, but each must assimilate the spirit of the other and yet preserve his individuality….Help and not fight, assimilation and not destruction, harmony and peace and not dissension.”
Even at the peak of his glory at the Parliament of Religions he was feeling deeply for the poor of his countrymen. In his hosts’ house, leaving a comfortable mattress, he preferred lying on the floor. There he shared tears for his poor countrymen.
During the course of his lectures across India, Swamiji’s words of encouragement to his countrymen were: “Do you feel, feel from the heart – that millions are starving today and millions are starving for ages? Does it make you sleepless…. You may feel, but then have you found any way out? Have you got the will to surmount mountain-high obstructions?”
“The ideal of womanhood in India is motherhood – that marvellous, unselfish, all-suffering ever forgiving mother. If the women are raised, then their children will, by their noble actions, glorify the name of the country. Then will culture, knowledge, powder and devotion awaken in the land.”
“Who will give the world light? Sacrifice in the past has been the law, it will be, alas, for ages to come. The earth’s bravest and best will have to sacrifice themselves for the good of the many, for the welfare of all. Buddha’s by the hundreds unnecessary with eternal love and pity.”