Extracts

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Aim of asceticism


essay

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[1 of 3] Anonymous (3000 BC-current, World): primary subject "Asceticism" (search under Inner Life/Practices)"
Asceticism is never an end in itself, but a discipline that frees man from the tyranny of the passions, so enabling him to devote himself without distraction to his inner work.

[2 of 3] Vivekananda (1863-1902, India): primary subject "Asceticism" (search under Inner Life/Practices)": detail "From ‘Jnana Yoga: Maya and Illusion’"
Nowadays it is very hard even to talk of renunciation. It was said of me in America that I was a man who came out of a land that had been dead and buried for five thousand years, and talked of renunciation. So says, perhaps, the English philosopher. Yet it is true that that is the only path to religion. Renounce and give up. What did Christ say? "He that loseth his life for my sake shall find it." Again and again did he preach renunciation as the only way to perfection. There comes a time when the mind awakes from this long and dreary dream — the child gives up its play and wants to go back to its mother. It finds the truth of the statement, "Desire is never satisfied by the enjoyment of desires, it only increases the more, as fire, when butter is poured upon it." ...
 Religion begins with this “do not”. Spirituality begins with this “do not”. When the “do not” is not there, religion has not begun.


[3 of 3] Vivekananda (1863-1902, India): primary subject "Asceticism" (search under Inner Life/Practices)": detail "‘Notes of Class Talks and Lectures: Design Theory’"
The idea of renunciation and sacrifice is in all religions as a means to reach God.