I cannot imagine anything nobler or more national than that for, say, one hour in the day, we should all do the labour that the poor must do, and thus identify ourselves with them and through them with all mankind. I cannot imagine better worship of God than that in His name I should labour for the poor even as they do.
Young India, 20-10-1921, p. 329
Religion is service of the helpless. God manifests Himself to us in the form of the helpless and the stricken.
Young India, 14-8-1924, p. 267
Daridranarayana is one of the millions of names by which humanity knows God who is unnameable, and unfathomable by human understanding, and it means God of the poor, God appearing in the hearts of the poor.
Young India, 4-4-1929, p. 110
And no one can see God face to face who has aught of the I in him. He must become a cypher if he would see God. Who shall dare say in this storm-tossed universe, ‘I have won’? God triumphs in us, never, we.
Young India, 25-6-1925, p. 223
A life of service must be one of humility. He, who would sacrifice his life for others, has hardly time to reserve for himself a place in the sun. Inertia must not be mistaken for humility, as it has been in Hinduism. True humility means most strenuous and constant endeavour entirely directed towards the service of humanity. God is continuously in action without resting for a single moment. If we would serve Him or become one with Him, our activity must be as unwearied as His.
From Yeravda Mandir, (1945), p. 47
There may be momentary rest in store for the drop which is separated from the ocean, but not for the drop in the ocean, which knows no rest. The same is the case with ourselves. As soon as we become one with the ocean in the shape of God, there is no more rest for us, nor indeed do we need rest any longer. Our very sleep is action. For we sleep with the thought of God in our hearts. This restlessness constitutes true rest. This never-ceasing agitation holds the key to peace ineffable. This supreme state of total surrender is difficult to describe, but not beyond the bounds of human experience. It has been attained by many dedicated souls, and may be attained by ourselves as well.
From Yeravda Mandir, (1945), pp. 47-48
Self-realization I hold to be impossible without service of and identification with the poorest.
Young India, 21-10-1926, p. 364
Man’s ultimate aim is the realization of God, and all his activities, social, political, religious, have to be guided by the ultimate aim of the vision of God. The immediate service of all human beings becomes a necessary part of the endeavour,” simply because the only way to find God is to see Him in His creation and be one with it. This can be only done by service of all. I am part and parcel of the whole, and I cannot find Him apart from the rest of humanity. My countrymen are my nearest neighbours. They have become so helpless, so resource-less, so inert that I must concentrate on serving them. If I could persuade myself that I should find Him in a Himalayan cave I would proceed there immediately. But I know that I cannot find Him apart from humanity.
Harijan, 29-8-1936, p. 226