Thursday, December 27, 2007


Swami Vivekananda wrote from New York to Shri Nanjunda Rao, on Apr. 14, 1896:

"... Only the first year I used to charge for my lectures. The last two years, my work was entirely free of all charges. As such, I have almost no money to send you or the Calcutta people. ..."

He wrote from England to Shri Nanjuna Rao on July 14, 1896.

"... But you must not depend on any foreign help. Nations, like individuals, must help themselves. This is real patriotism. If a nation cannot do that, its time has not yet come. It must wait. ..."

1. These two letters deal with subscriptions for magazines (BrahmaVadin etc.) started by Shri Nanjunda Rao, Alasinga and Madras devotees. Unless we see the inbox letters of Swamiji, we cannot clearly estimate what advice/help Mr. Nanjunda Rao sought from Swamiji. Swamiji made it clear that they should not expect funds from him personally, or the foreign help.

2. A nation which waited for thousand years under the Muslim and British rule with its people starving can wait few more decades, centuries or millennia for succour. No problem. At the sametime, he wants the Prabuddha Bharata and Brahmavadin for distribution among foreigners and get some credit for the work done by Nanjunda Rao. We can find from the same letter:

"... The numbers of Prabuddha Bharata have been received and distributed too to the class. It is very satisfactory. It will have a great sale, no doubt, in India. ..."

Though Swamiji is "poor" to help Nanjunda Rao he has:

* money to visit Switzerland on a luxury trip, staying at luxury hotels.

** money to start big magazines on partnership basis with big people. He wrote from Switzerland to Mr. Sturdy on Aug. 5, 1896:

"... PS. I hope you will consider well the plan for the big magazine. Some money can be raised in America, and we can keep the magazine all to ourselves at the same time. ..."

*** money to buy bungalows and complete hills, at Almora. He wrote from Reading, UK and Switzerland to Shri Lala Badri Shah, apparently a Real Estate Broker on Aug. 5, 1896:

"... I have heard that there was a certain Mr. Ramsay who lived in a bungalow near Almora and that he had a garden round his bungalow. Can't it be bought? What is the price? If not to be bought, can it be rented?

Do you know of any suitable place near Almora where I can build my monastery with a garden etc.? I would rather like to have a hill all to myself. ..."

Since Swamiji had a big magazine in his mind, in his letter dated July 14, 1896, (same letter quoted above), he tried to discourage Nanjunda Rao:

"... The great drawback here is — they all want to start papers of their own; and it is right that it should be so, seeing that, after all, no foreigner will ever write the English language as well as the native Englishman, end the ideas, when put in good English, will spread farther than in Hindu English. Then again it is much more difficult to write a story in a foreign language than an essay. ..."

Swamiji's opinion of Hindu English: not clear?

So Nation will wait! Nanjunda Rao will wait, while Vivekananda buys bungalows and hills all to himself!

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