Question: This centenary of the Parliament of Religions is, for many, associated with the name of Swami Vivekananda, one of the major figures of the Parliament that was held one hundred years ago. You have spent much of the past year giving concerts in his honour. Who was Swami Vivekananda, and what did he offer to the world?

Sri Chinmoy: I strongly feel that today's centenary of the Parliament of Religions is taking place precisely because of Vivekananda. He was the dreamer, the lover and the possessor of a truly universal spirit. People came to the original Parliament of Religions from various religions and various cultures. In most cases they came to preach or speak about their respective religious beliefs. But Vivekananda came as a lover of humanity to sing the song of a oneness-world-home. He did not come here to propagate the views of his Hindu religion. He came to propagate the one religion that is known as Man. He spoke of the individual man who is evolving into the universal man and consciously accepting the world as his own, very own. Vivekananda was at once an ancient silence-heart and a modern dynamism-life.