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Ana Sereno entrevista Swami Dayananda sobre “Solidariedade”
Ana Sereno
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Interview with Swami Dayananda “Reach Out”

Rishikesh – March 2009


“There is no way of spiritual growing unless one has compassion”


During our stay in the Arsha Vidya Pitham, Rishikesh, Swami Dayananda Saraswati, recalling the interview we had done to him in october 2008 at Quinta das Águias, proposed us to answer some more questions. It was with great pleasure and recognition that we prepared the following interview on the theme “Reach Out”. It’s also with upmost respect that we thank Swamiji for the moments he dedicated to us and for the simpathy with which he received us.


1. Please clarify us about the importance of solidarity, using one’s time helping others, giving and reaching out.


You have to reach out, because emotionally you need to grow, to grow into a self-accepting person. You can’t remain an insecure person. If you are insecure you can’t reach out, you want the whole world to help you (laughs). One takes advantage of every situation. Any week person, or one who is in a week situation, can exploit to one’s own advantage and so that means you’re a grabber not a contributor. To be a contributor you have to give, you have to reach out. That is the method of growing, by giving, by contributing, you grow into a more complete person, a more compassioned person. The more compassioned you are, the more you accept yourself, the more insecure you are, you cannot accept yourself. It feeds itself, I am insecure therefore I can’t give, and therefore I grab. So the more I grab because I’m insecure, I become more insecure. We all start with a certain insecurity and we grow to become a contributor. The more you contribute, the more secure you are. The less you contribute the more insecure you are. Therefore, living becomes just getting on. I gave a talk on this “Living versus Getting On”. Getting is just get by, living is just when you contribute.


2. What is the vision of the Vedas on this subject?


Danena adanam tara it says that you have to give. Danena adanam tara. Look at this ashram. We don’t charge, we don’t do anything, but we are running. So many sadhus come, people come and stay and all that, and we have no problem. We do it in America also and that’s an amazing thing. We’ve appointed a new manager in Coimbatore and that person has his own problems. He charges so much that nobody can come for the camps (laughs). I just left it for him to understand what it is all about. The principle is not understood. The principle is to allow people to take care of it, you don’t attempt to take care of it, if you make an attempt to take care of it, you’ll never be able to take care of it, because it’s huge. You have to allow people to take care of it. Bring people, that’s what a manager should do. Bring more people and then let them take care of it. You just administer, don’t spend the money, don’t waste the money, administer properly and then money will come. That’s the principle, that’s cultural, that’s our culture. Danena adanam tara, if one has incapacity to give, that’s natural, but you have to cross that. Tara means cross, this is Veda, Sama Veda. “Au au au setumstara dustaran”, very difficult, make use of a setu, a bridge to cross this. These are all difficult things to cross, that is adanam. How to cross not giving? Danena adanam, danena adanam, danena adanam…Danena adanam tara - not giving you cross by giving (laughs). Fake it and make it, danena adanam. If you have no shrada, shradaya ashradam, with shrada, means act as though you have shrada. What people who have got shrada do, you also do. Shrada will come, that is true. Shradaya ashradam, akrodenam krodam, anger please cross through akroda, through the pratice of no kroda, there is no other way. Don’t victimize people, neutralize all this anger krodenam krodam. Satyenam anrtam, by what is true cross anrtam, what is false. So that’s Veda, Sama Veda and Yajurveda. Shradaya deyam, this is also Veda. That is Sama and this Krishna Yajurveda. Shradaya deyam. Deyam means give, this should be given, with shrada I give. Ashradaya deyam, don’t give without shrada.

So we invite all the sadhus, we have bandhara, and we make them feel that they are obliged to come, we don’t make them feel that we are giving them food, no. We make them feel they are obliged, so that’s the truth, that is giving, that is called shrada.

I can’t bend, I have problems in the lower back, but then I just manage with some yoga and all, but even though it is true, I will go and make namaskara to everyone, whoever it is, I don’t question, I do namaskara, even to bhramacharys and other people. I do namaskar to everybody. They feel good you know? But for me it is real, I have no pretension, I really respect. So that is shrada. With help you give, with humility you give, if you can’t give more. With knowledge to whom you are giving, give, wether that person will accept it or not. Please make sure he accepts, the recipient accepts, but you give. Give with knowledge of what for you are giving, and all that.

So, so much in this tradition, is about giving. If you look to the voluntary contribution in the countries, in the various countries, voluntary day-to-day contribution of a person, only happens in India. In this culture, even poor people will contribute. All the sadhus used to live here, there was no place distributing food at that time, but they used to come here because they could learn from each other. That’s how it started. They wanted to learn and they came to Rishikesh. Nobody else was here, they used to help each other. One person knows grammar, one person knows Vedanta…and then you can learn. Grammar teachers will teach you grammar, Vedanta teachers, will teach Vedanta; a grammarian will go to Vedanta. Vedanta teacher will know grammar, but he won’t teach grammar, because it’s a waste of time for him. He will guide, you, please go and learn from the other person. There is a specialist and therefore grammar teacher will also come to Vedanta teacher. So they used to help each other. There will be somebody who knows a little bit of grammar, good enough for a beginner, and he will teach. So people used to come here, then they would go to the villages, in the mountains, and people would give them food. There was no problem. They would do namaskar and give. Shrada, shradaya deyam, ashradaya deyam. So in this tradition danam is very big. And giving without any complaint, no strings attached.





3. We have seen some people becoming very self-centered in their spiritual life. What is the importance of solidarity for those who are engaged in Moksha?


Unless you have compassion there is no Moksha. Bhutadaya, that means you have to have advesta sarva butanam maitra karunayeva. There should be Karuna – compassion. Maitra, the one who has got friendliness, no hatred, towards anybody. Advesta sarva bhutanam maitra karunayeva. Therefore, there is no way of spiritual growing unless one has compassion. Daya, compassion. Look at my name itself – Dayananda. Daya, it’s a big thing, it is – compassion. Because they have a value for Daya the name is given. I’m not the only Dayananda, there are many Dayanandas. One of them made it has Dayananda. He was some kind of a teacher, he founded one big organization Arya Samaj. Even today I’m mistaken for that person. I get letters to recommend for admition in DAV School, which belongs to Arya Samaj, of Daynanda. They think I’m that Daynanda, therefore I get letters to recommend, no idea. There are some many Dayanandas here, that’s why I put Saraswati. Saraswati is a title. I need not have a long name, Swami Dayananda Sarawati, no computer print out puts the name altogether, so they put Swami D. Saraswati, Swami D. This is very common; there are many Dayanandas in Rishikesh. So what I say is Daya, the word, is highly valuable, it is a very important word – bhutadaya. Karuna is another word. So you grow into a person for Moksha by Daya.


4. How should individuals help, locally or globally?


You have to find out, see in a country like Portugal you have certain welfare; the government takes care of the welfare. So, individually you don’t’ require much help, but lots of people require time to hear their stories. So we can hear them, we can talk to them, that’s a great help. No therapy, just allow them to talk. We should never do therapy, if you do therapy you have to be a professional, you have to charge them. Charging them is a part of the therapy, if they pay it works, therapy works. If they pay, they will take you as a professional and they will begin talking to you, because they are paying (laughs). They will keep talking and talking, they cannot stop. If they don’t pay, they won’t talk. Here is different, just giving your hears, that’s a great help. Tuition of children is a great help also, like this we can do some work. Everybody can do some work.


In november 2000, Swami Dayananda Saraswati founded the All India Movement (AIM) for Seva to bring about a change amongst people of India, to care for those who need help. The word 'Seva' which means service with care, itself indicates the goal of this organization. AIM for Seva's ultimate goal is to build a society where people care for people.


If you’re interested in knowing more about AIM for SEVA, or in making a donation please visit:



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