I simply want to be like the squirrel in the building
of Râma's bridge, who was quite content to
put on the bridge his little quota of sand-dust.
Image source: Wikimedia Commons
From Swami Vivekananda's narration of RamayanaExcerpt from a lecture delivered at the Shakespeare Club, Pasadena, California, 31 January 1900 in which Swamiji narrated the story of Ramayana—[Source]
(The army of monkeys started to build the bridge. . .)
The monkeys removed whole hills, placed them in the sea and covered them with stones and trees, thus making a huge embankment. A little squirrel, so it is said, was there rolling himself in the sand and running backwards and forwards on to the bridge and shaking himself. Thus in his small way he was working for the bridge of Rama by putting in sand. The monkeys laughed, for they were bringing whole mountains, whole forests, huge loads of sand for the bridge — so they laughed at the little squirrel rolling in the sand and then shaking himself. But Rama saw it and remarked: "Blessed be the little squirrel; he is doing his work to the best of his ability, and he is therefore quite as great as the greatest of you." Then he gently stroked the squirrel on the back, and the marks of Rama's fingers, running lengthways, are seen on the squirrel's back to this day.
Lecture at Victoria Hall, MadrasIn a lecture delivered at Victoria Hall, Madras (currently known as Chennai)—[Source]
I do not believe in reform; I believe in growth. I do not dare to put myself in the position of God and dictate to our society, "This way thou shouldst move and not that." I simply want to be like the squirrel in the building of Râma's bridge, who was quite content to put on the bridge his little quota of sand-dust. That is my position.
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