What will one achieve by renouncing only these things? The one thing needful is the renunciation of ‘woman and gold’. That renunciation is the real and supreme renunciation. Householders should go into solitude now and then, to practice spiritual discipline in order to cultivate devotion to God; they should renounce mentally. But the Sannyasi should renounce both mentally and physically…It is Satchidananda that comes to us in the form of the guru. If a man is initiated by a human guru, he will not achieve anything if he regards his guru as a mere man. The guru should be regarded as the direct manifestation of God. Only then can the disciple have faith in the mantra given by the Guru. Once a man has faith he achieves all.
(p.289-93, The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna, The Master’s advice to devotees on 22nd September 1883)
The mother’s heart, the hero’s will,
The softest flower’s sweetest feel;
The charm and force that ever sway
The altar fire’s flaming play;
The strength that leads, in love obeys;
Far-reaching dreams, and patient ways,
Eternal faith in Self, in all
The sight Divine in great in small;
All these, and more than I could see
Today may “Mother” grant to thee.
(p.526, V.7, The Complete Works of Swami Vivekananda, Swamiji’s poem written to Miss Alberta Sturges on her 23rd Birthday on 22nd September 1900)