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B.R. Ambedkar quotes Showing 1-30 of 87

“I measure the progress of a community by the degree of progress which women have achieved.”
Bhim Rao Ambedkar
“Freedom of mind is the real freedom.
A person whose mind is not free though he may not be in chains, is a slave, not a free man.
One whose mind is not free, though he may not be in prison, is a prisoner and not a free man.
One whose mind is not free though alive, is no better than dead.
Freedom of mind is the proof of one's existence.”
Bhimrao Ramji Ambedkar, Writings And Speeches: A Ready Reference Manual
“The relationship between husband and wife should be one of closest friends.”
Bhim Rao Ambedkar
“If I find the constitution being misused, I shall be the first to burn it.”
Bhimrao Ramji Ambedkar, Writings And Speeches: A Ready Reference Manual
“Cultivation of mind should be the ultimate aim of human existence.”
Bhimrao Ramji Ambedkar
“On the 26th of January 1950, we are going to enter into a life of contradictions. In politics we will have equality and in social and economic life we will have inequality.
In politics we will be recognizing the principle of one man one vote and one vote one value.
In our social and economic life, we shall, by reason of our social and economic structure, continue to deny the principle of one man one value.

How long shall we continue to live this life of contradictions?
How long shall we continue to deny equality in our social and economic life?
If we continue to deny it for long, we will do so only by putting our political democracy in peril. We must remove this contradiction at the earliest possible moment or else those who suffer from inequality will blow up the structure of political democracy which this Assembly has so laboriously built up.”
Bhimrao Ramji Ambedkar, Writings And Speeches: A Ready Reference Manual
“In the Hindu religion, one can[not] have freedom of speech. A Hindu must surrender his freedom of speech. He must act according to the Vedas. If the Vedas do not support the actions, instructions must be sought from the Smritis, and if the Smritis fail to provide any such instructions, he must follow in the footsteps of the great men.
He is not supposed to reason. Hence, so long as you are in the Hindu religion, you cannot expect to have freedom of thought”
B.R. Ambedkar
“Unlike a drop of water which loses its identity when it joins the ocean,
man does not lose his being in the society in which he lives.
Man's life is independent.
He is born not for the development of the society alone, but for the development of his self too.”
Bhimrao Ramji Ambedkar, Writings And Speeches: A Ready Reference Manual
“Life should be great rather than long.”
Bhimrao Ramji Ambedkar
“Humans are mortal. So are ideas. An idea needs propagation as much as a plant needs watering. Otherwise both will wither and die.”
Bhim Rao Ambedkar
“Indifferentism is the worst kind of disease that can affect people.”
Bhimrao Ramji Ambedkar, Writings And Speeches: A Ready Reference Manual
“Constitutional morality is not a natural sentiment. It has to be cultivated. We must realise that our people have yet to learn it. Democracy in India is only a top-dressing on an Indian soil which is essentially undemocratic.”
B.R. Ambedkar, Annihilation of Caste
“Lost rights are never regained by appeals to the conscience of the usurpers,
but by relentless struggle.... Goats are used for sacrificial offerings and not lions.”
Bhimrao Ramji Ambedkar, Writings And Speeches: A Ready Reference Manual
“Though, I was born a Hindu, I solemnly assure you that I will not die as a Hindu”
B.R. Ambedkar, Writings And Speeches: A Ready Reference Manual
“The Hindus criticise the Mahomedans for having spread their religion by the use of the sword. They also ridicule Christianity on the score of the Inquisition.

But really speaking, who is better and more worthy of our respect—the Mahomedans and Christians who attempted to thrust down the throats of unwilling persons what they regarded as necessary for their salvation, or the Hindu who would not spread the light, who would endeavour to keep others in darkness, who would not consent to share his intellectual and social inheritance with those who are ready and willing to make it a part of their own make-up?

I have no hesitation in saying that if the Mahomedan has been cruel, the Hindu has been mean; and meanness is worse than cruelty.”
B.R. Ambedkar, Annihilation of Caste
“History shows that where ethics and economics come in conflict, victory is always with economics. Vested interests have never been known to have willingly divested themselves unless there was sufficient force to compel them.”
Bhim Rao Ambedkar
“The teachings of Buddha are eternal, but even then Buddha did not proclaim them to be infallible.

The religion of Buddha has the capacity to change according to times, a quality which no other religion can claim to have...
Now what is the basis of Buddhism?

If you study carefully, you will see that Buddhism is based on reason.
There is an element of flexibility inherent in it, which is not found in any other religion.”
Bhimrao Ramji Ambedkar, The Buddha and His Dhamma: A Critical Edition
“I like the religion that teaches liberty, equality and fraternity.”
Bhimrao Ramji Ambedkar
“I do not want that our loyalty as Indians should be in the slightest way affected by any competitive loyalty whether that loyalty arises out of our religion, out of our culture or out of our language.
I want all people to be Indians first, Indian last and nothing else but Indians.”
Bhimrao Ramji Ambedkar, Writings And Speeches: A Ready Reference Manual
“Constitution is not a mere lawyers document, it is a vehicle of Life, and its spirit is always the spirit of Age.”
Bhimrao Ramji Ambedkar, Writings And Speeches: A Ready Reference Manual
“Equality may be a fiction but nonetheless one must accept it as a governing principle.”
Bhimrao Ramji Ambedkar, Writings And Speeches: A Ready Reference Manual
“It is not enough to be electors only.
It is necessary to be law-makers;
otherwise those who can be law-makers will be the masters of those who can only be electors.”
Bhimrao Ramji Ambedkar, Writings And Speeches: A Ready Reference Manual
“Justice has always evoked ideas of equality, of proportion of compensation.
Equity signifies equality. Rules and regulations, right and righteousness are concerned with equality in value.
If all men are equal, then all men are of the same essence, and the common essence entitles them of the same fundamental rights and equal liberty...

In short justice is another name of liberty, equality and fraternity.”
Bhimrao Ramji Ambedkar, Writings And Speeches: A Ready Reference Manual
“So long as you do not achieve social liberty, whatever freedom is provided by the law is of no avail to you.”
Bhimrao Ramji Ambedkar
“A just society is that society in which ascending sense of reverence and descending sense of contempt is dissolved into the creation of a compassionate society”
B.R. Ambedkar, Annihilation of Caste
“A bitter thing cannot be made sweet.
The taste of anything can be changed.
But poison cannot be changed into nectar.”
Bhimrao Ramji Ambedkar, Writings And Speeches: A Ready Reference Manual
“Why does a human body become deceased?
The reason is that as long as the human body is not free from suffering, mind cannot be happy.
If a man lacks enthusiasm, either his body or mind is in a deceased condition....

Now what saps the enthusiasm in man?
If there is no enthusiasm, life becomes drudgery - a mere burden to be dragged. Nothing can be achieved if there is no enthusiasm.
The main reason for this lack of enthusiasm on the part of a man is that an individual looses the hope of getting an opportunity to elevate himself.
Hopelessness leads to lack of enthusiasm.
The mind in such cases becomes deceased....

When is enthusiasm created?
When one breaths an atmosphere where one is sure of getting the legitimate reward for one's labor, only then one feels enriched by enthusiasm and inspiration.”
Bhimrao Ramji Ambedkar, Writings And Speeches: A Ready Reference Manual
“Slavery does not merely mean a legalised form of subjection.
It means a state of society in which some men are forced to accept from others the purposes which control their conduct.”
Bhimrao Ramji Ambedkar, Writings And Speeches: A Ready Reference Manual
“I do not know whether you draw a distinction between principles and rules. But I do... Rules are practical; they are habitual ways of doing things according to prescription. But principles are intellectual; they are useful methods of judging things... The principle may be wrong, but the act is conscious and responsible. The rule may be right, but the act is mechanical. A religious act may not be a correct act, but must at least be a responsible act. To permit this responsibility, religion must mainly be a matter of principles only. It cannot be a matter of rules. The moment it degenerates into rules it ceases to be religion, as it kills the responsibility which is the essence of a truly religious act.”
B.R. Ambedkar, Annihilation of Caste
“A great man is different from an eminent one in that he is ready to be the servant of the society.”
Bhim Rao Ambedkar

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