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Paramahansa Yogananda Quotes

Paramahansa Yogananda introduced India's age-old philosophy of Yoga to the West through his Autobiography of a Yogi. Paramahansa Yogananda Quotes are taken from various sources. It has been collected over a period of time and is constantly updated.


Modern life is becoming very unsatisfactory. It does not give you happiness. There are too many things, too many desires. More nice cars and dresses and entertainments — and more worries! Free yourself from these so-called “necessities” and spend more time with God. Make your life simple. Be happy in and by your Self.

The pleasure of modern man is in getting more and more, and what happens to anyone else doesn’t matter. But isn’t it better to live simply — without so many luxuries and with fewer worries?

God watches the heart. Seek to please Him above all. Don’t act with the prime motive of pleasing others.

Quotes of Paramahansa Yogananda


Love is evolution’s ameliorative call
To the far-strayed sons
To return to Perfection’s home.
It is the call of the beauty – robed ones
To worship the great Beauty.
It is the call of God
Through silent intelligences
And starburst of feelings. (Source: Paramahansa Yogananda’s Poem - What is Love?)

When mental restlessness is stilled and the consciousness is interiorized, in touch with the soul, the God-revealing intuitive faculty is awakened.

Don't try to know God first; love God first. Then He will tell you everything.

God as Spirit, the Absolute, beyond form, qualities, manifestations, cannot be perceived, but only experienced by the supreme realization of Spirit and soul union.

The way to God is not through the intellect, but through intuition. Spirituality is measured by what you experience intuitively, from the communion of your soul with God.

Happiness is not dependent on external circumstances; rather, it is to be found in the simpler joys of life, and most of all in the ever new bliss of deep meditation.

Be happy by clinging to the simple, true, and lasting soul-joys. They come by deep thinking, introspection, spiritual inspiration, and meditation.

It is even good to do good for the sake of praise. That is better than not to do good at all! Still, when you do good to please God alone, that is true Karma Yoga. It is almost as good as meditation. Even if other misunderstand you, God will never misunderstand. Live to feel His smile in your heart.

Television has a satanic influence. Don’t let yourselves be too fascinated by it. Seek, instead, the ‘television’ of super-conscious visions in the spiritual eye.

Once the soul becomes free, it remains so for eternity. Never more will it have to roam the long, winding road of evolution.

Desires are the greatest obstacle on the spiritual path. I see it as a war, with people fighting to achieve victory. Some are killed by bullets of desire, and must be reborn to renew the struggle. Others, after great difficulties, win through to victory, and have no need to return to this material plane.

One who truly knows does not talk about it. Wisdom keeps its own counsel.

The wave belongs entirely to the ocean from which it protrudes. This is God’s body. If He wants to make it well, all right. If He wants to keep it unwell, all right.

It is wisest to be impartial. If you have health, but are attached to it, you will always be afraid of losing it. And if you fear that loss, but become ill, you will suffer. Why not remain forever joyful in the Self?

Man’s greatest problem is his ego – his consciousness of individuality. Whatever happens to him, he thinks it affects him, personally. Why be affected? You are not this body: You are He! Everything is He: All is Spirit.

One who truly knows does not talk about it. Wisdom keeps its own counsel.

The wave belongs entirely to the ocean from which it protrudes. This is God’s body. If He wants to make it well, all right. If He wants to keep it unwell, all right.

It is wisest to be impartial. If you have health, but are attached to it, you will always be afraid of losing it. And if you fear that loss, but become ill, you will suffer. Why not remain forever joyful in the Self?

Man’s greatest problem is his ego – his consciousness of individuality. Whatever happens to him, he thinks it affects him, personally. Why be affected? You are not this body: You are He! Everything is He: All is Spirit.

To have calm feeling doesn’t mean that you always smile and agree with everyone no matter what they say — that you regard truth but don’t want to annoy anybody with it. This is going to the extreme. Those who try in this way to please everyone, with the desire of getting praise for their good nature, do not necessarily have control of feeling....

Whoever has control of feeling follows truth, shares that truth wherever he can, and avoids annoying unnecessarily anyone who would not be receptive anyway. He knows when to speak and when to be silent, but he never compromises his own ideals and inner peace. Such a man is a force for great good in this world.

If you want to be loved, start loving others who need your love....If you want others to sympathize with you, start showing sympathy to those around you. If you want to be respected, you must learn to be respectful to everyone, both young and old....

Whatever you want others to be, first be that yourself; then you will find others responding in like manner to you.

All are waves on the same, one ocean, composed, as ocean water is, of the same substance: Spirit. Some of the waves are higher than others. Some waves don’t ever want to distance themselves from the Ocean. All waves, no matter how high, are in essence one and the same. The difference between the guru and the disciples, then lies only in their respective closeness to the ocean: in how conscious each one is of his essential reality. The greater the sense of ego, the taller the wave, and the greater, in consequence, the ignorance. The greater one’s awareness of the ocean as one’s sole reality, the smaller the wave, and also the less his sense of having a separate individuality.

Enlightened beings enjoy everything, not for itself, but as a ‘play’ of God’s.

You go on until you achieve endlessness.

Man is important in one sense only. He was made in the image of God: That is his importance. He is important for his body, ego, or personality. His constant affirmation of ego-consciousness is the source of all this problems.

Earth-bound possessions and glory all fade away, but God-bound possessions hold through eternity, serving with supreme usefulness.

Why worship material comfort on the altar of change? Learn to adore spiritual comfort in the temple of indestructibility.

The best way to convert earthly accumulations into imperishable heavenly treasure is to use them for spiritual service.

The cozy crib of your heart has for a very long time been small, holding self-love alone; now you must make it enormous, so that social, national, international, creatural, and Cosmic love may be born there and become One Love.

Failure to keep to your schedule of improvement means you have paralyzed your will.

You have no greater friend and no greater enemy than yourself.

If you befriend yourself, you will find accomplishment.

There is no law of God preventing you from being what you want to be and accomplishing what you want to accomplish.

Nothing detrimental that happens can affect you unless you sanction it.

Let nothing weaken your conviction that you can be whatever you want to be. There is no one obstructing you unless it be yourself.

Waste not golden spiritual opportunities on the fool’s gold of material glitter. Where is the time for God if it is spent in constant fussing to satisfy the body’s wants for what I have termed “unnecessary necessities”? Rather simplify life and use that saved time in meditation for God-communion and real progress in attaining life’s necessary necessities of peace and happiness.

God is simple. Everything else is complex.

Be anchored in the Spirit of God, in the realization of the Infinite Being that flows like an ocean through all creation. It is worthwhile in this short season of life to make the effort to gain God-realization. Joy will flow constantly.

Keep life simple and enjoy what God has provided, without seeking false and expensive pleasures.

The true basis of religion is not belief, but intuitive experience. Intuition is the soul’s power of knowing God. To know what religion is really all about, one must know God.

Self realization is the knowing in all parts of body, mind, and soul that you are now in possession of the kingdom of God; that you do not have to pray that it come to you; that God’s omnipresence is your omnipresence; and that all that you need to do is improve your knowing.

To be calmly active and actively calm – a Prince of Peace sitting on the throne of poise, directing the kingdom of activity – is to be spiritually healthy. Too much activity makes one an automaton and too much calmness makes one lazy and impractical. Peace is the enjoyment of life; activity is the expression of life. A balance between the activity of the West and the calmness of the East is needed.

From that sphere where the mind cannot penetrate, God is pouring forth His essential Light – the cosmic intelligent Vibration that structures finite creation.

Droplets of love sparkle in true souls, but in Spirit alone is found the sea of love.

To develop pure and unconditional love between husband and wife, parent and child, friend and friend, self and all, is the lesson we have come on earth to learn.

Exude peace and goodness; because that is the nature of the image of God within you – your true nature.

The sole purpose of creation is to compel you to solve its mystery and perceive God behind all.

All the ages past are as nothing compared to the eternity of time before you.

Man has falsely identified with the pseudo-soul or ego. When he transfers his sense of identity to his true being, the immortal Soul, he discovers that all pain is unreal. He no longer can even imagine the state of suffering.

Play your part in life, but never forget that it is only a role.

Each man is stamped with the vibratory signature of his own state of consciousness, and emanates a characteristic influence on persons and things.

Change yourself and you have done your part in changing the world. Every individual must change his own life if he wants to live in a peaceful world.

The entire purpose of life becomes futile if you cannot find happiness. Therefore, success must be measured by happiness, by your ability to remain in harmony with cosmic laws, rather than by health, wealth, or prestige.

To lead a successful life you must first have a dominant purpose. That purpose must be the right one for you, then all the powers of God will guide you in your plans and activities.

When you want to create something important, sit quietly, calm your senses and your thoughts, and meditate deeply upon what you want to do or acquire. Then you will be guided by the great creative power of Spirit.

Always work willingly and you will find that you are sustained by the indefatigable power of God.

Divine grace can make fertile the most arid heart, transforming its brown desert into a verdant garden of inner happiness and peace.

The river of grace forever flows in the hidden depths of our being. There is no need to cry out to God for help. He is forever near us — nearer than our most secret thoughts and feelings.

Affirmation is man’s part of the labor of self-transformation. United to the flow of divine grace, affirmation becomes the sort of prayer that alone achieves results.

Divine grace is forever impersonal. It is not, like the human will, dependent on personal choices or inclinations. It has no favorites. Like the sunlight, it shines impartially everywhere.

To commune daily with God in deep meditation, and to carry His love and guidance with you into all your dutiful activities, is the way that leads to permanent peace and happiness.

Kindness is the light that dissolves all walls between souls, families and nations.

If you make up your mind to be happy, no one and nothing on earth can take that happiness from you.

Peace is the altar of God, the condition in which happiness exists.

No matter what happens, you must be able to steer the ship of concentration calmly to the shores of blessedness.

Always be ready to be active, but carry calmness with you into your activity.

Making others happy through kindness of speech and sincerity of advice is a sign of true greatness.

Bring into play the almighty power within you, so that on the stage of life you can fulfill your high destined role.

Identifying himself with a shallow ego, man takes for granted that it is he who thinks, wills, feels, digests meals, and keeps himself alive, never admitting through reflection that in his ordinary life he is naught but a puppet of past actions and of nature or environment.

Each man’s intellectual reactions, feelings, moods, and habits are circumscribed by effects of past causes, whether of this or a prior life.

Lofty above such influences, however, is the real soul.

All scriptures declare man to be not a corruptible body but a living soul.

No man can approach happiness without the appreciation of moral and spiritual values.

Realizing that man’s body is like an electric battery, I reasoned that it could be recharged with energy through the direct agency of the human will.


The greatest of all happiness, next to divine happiness, is to be at peace with one’s immediate relations, those with whom one must live every day in the year.

Very few persons realize that most of our happiness lies in the art of understanding the law of human behavior. 

The basic law of right human behavior is self-reform.

Whenever any trouble occurs with our friends or dear ones, we should inwardly lay the blame on ourselves for getting into an unpleasant situation and then try to get out of it as fast and as graciously as we can.

Paramahansa Yogananda Quotes on Intuition – Everyone Has Intuition

Intuition is that power of Spirit inherited by the soul by which truth is perceived directly, without the medium of any other faculty.

All of God’s children are endowed with the highest intelligence: intuition, the all-knowing wisdom of the soul.

Intuition is soul guidance, appearing naturally in man during those instants when his mind is calm.
Every man has the power of intuition, as he has the power of thought. As thought can be cultivated, so intuition can be developed. In intuition we are in tune with Reality with the world of Bliss. But it need to be developed.

A life can be successful, healthy, and complete balanced with wisdom and happiness when activity is guided by God’s inner, intuitive direction.

Paramahansa Yogananda Quotes on Death

Death is not the end: it is temporary emancipation, given to you when karma, the law of justice, determines that your present body and environment have served their purpose, or when you are too weary or exhausted by suffering to bear the burden of physical existence any longer.

When you reflect that this world is filled with death, and that your body, too, has to be relinquished, God’s plan seems very cruel. You can’t imagine that He is merciful.

But when you look at the process of death with the eye of wisdom, you see that after all it is merely a thought of God passing through a nightmare of change into blissful freedom in Him again. Saint and sinner alike are given freedom at death, to a greater or lesser degree according to merit. In the Lord’s dream astral world — the land to which souls go at death — they enjoy a freedom such as they never knew during their earthly life.

So don’t pity the person who is passing through the delusion of death, for in a little while he will be free. Once he gets out of that delusion, he sees that death was not so bad after all. He realizes his mortality was only a dream and rejoices that now no fire can burn him, no water can drown him; he is free and safe.

Paramhansa Yogananda on the Shakti Concept

Parvathi, Kali, Durga, Uma, and other goddesses are aspects of Jaganmatri ‘Divine mother of the world,’ variously named to signalize particular functions. Gor or Shiva, in his Para or transcendental aspect is inactive in creation. His Shakti (energy activating force) is relegated to these consorts, the productive ‘female powers that make possible the infinite unfoldments in the cosmos.
Paramhansa Yogananda
(Source: Autobiography of Yogi)