Student: How did we come to lose shraddha?
SWAMI VIVEKANANDA: We have had a negative education all along from our childhood. We have only learnt that we are nobodies. Seldom are we given to understand that great people were ever born in our country. Nothing positive has been taught to us. We do not even know how to use our hands and feet! We master all the facts and figures concerning the ancestors of the English, but we are sadly unmindful about our own. We have learnt only weakness. Being a conquered race, we have brought ourselves to believe that we are weak and have no independence in anything. So, how can it be but that the shraddha is lost? The idea of true shraddha must be brought back once more to us, the faith in our own selves must we reawakened, and only then will all the problems facing our country be gradually solved by ourselves.
Conversation: Saturday, January 22, 1898. Recorded in Bengali by Surendra Nath Sen in his private diary. Complete Works, 5. 332.