But I say unto you, That ye resist not evil: but whosoever shall smite thee on thy right cheek, turn to him the other also.—Matthew 5:39
In this website we are writing a series of articles on Swami Vivekananda‘s quotations on Jesus Christ. And now the topic of our this article is Swami Vivekananda‘s quotes and comments on Matthew 5:39.
- This article is on Swami Vivekananda’s quotations on Matthew 5:39, to learn more only on Matthew 5:39, you may see this BibleHub page, or search more in Google or any other web search engine.
- For Swami Vivekananda’s quotes on non-resistance, please see this article.
“Resist not evil” — a little explanation
From Complete Works, Volume I—[Source]
“Resist not evil.” This requires a little explanation. We may not resist an evil, but at the same time we may feel very miserable. A man may say very harsh things to me, and I may not outwardly hate him for it, may not answer him back, and may restrain myself from apparently getting angry, but anger and hatred may be in my mind, and I may feel very badly towards that man. That is not non-resistance; I should be without any feeling of hatred or anger, without any thought of resistance; my mind must then be as calm as if nothing had happened. And only when I have got to that state, have I attained to non-resistance, and not before. Forbearance of all misery, without even a thought of resisting or driving it out, without even any painful feeling in the mind, or any remorse — this is Titiksha. Suppose I do not resist, and some great evil comes thereby; if I have Titiksha, I should no feel any remorse for not having resisted. When the mind has attained to that state, it has become established in Titiksha. People in India do extraordinary things in order to practice this Titiksha. They bear tremendous heat and cold without caring, they do not even care for snow, because they take no thought for the body; it is left to itself, as if it were a foreign thing.
Swami Vivekananda’s quotes on “Resist not evil”
- All great teachers have taught, “Resist not evil,” that non-resistance is the highest moral ideal. We all know that, if a certain number of us attempted to put that maxim fully into practice, the whole social fabric would fall to pieces, the wicked would take possession of our properties and our lives, and would do whatever they liked with us. Even if only one day of such non-resistance were practiced, it would lead to disaster. Yet, intuitively, in our heart of hearts we feel the truth of the teaching “Resist not evil.” This seems to us to be the highest ideal; yet to teach this doctrine only would be equivalent to condemning a vast portion of mankind. Not only so, it would be making men feel that they were always doing wrong, and cause in them scruples of conscience in all their actions; it would weaken them, and that constant self-disapproval would breed more vice than any other weakness would. To the man who has begun to hate himself the gate to degeneration has already opened; and the same is true of a nation.[Source]
- Christ said, “Resist not evil”, and we do not understand it until we discover that it is not only moral but actually the best policy, for anger is loss of energy to the man who displays it. You should not allow your minds to come into those brain-combinations of anger and hatred.[Source]
- Non-injury is right; “Resist not evil” is a great thing—these are indeed grand principles; but the scriptures say, “Thou art a householder; if anyone smites thee on thy cheek, and thou dost not return him an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth, thou wilt verily be a sinner.”[Source]
- Resist not evil done to yourself, but you may resist evil done to others.[Source]
- Resist not evil. Face it! You are higher than evil.[Source]
- The world is so evil because Jesus’ teaching, “Resist not evil”, has never been tried.[Source]
- “Why should I become angry just because another man has made a fool of himself. Do thou resist not evil!” That is what the lovers of God say. Whatever the world does, wherever it goes, has no influence [on them].[Source]