Ram Dass Inspirational Quotes

Ram Dass, born Richard Alpert in 1931, was a prominent spiritual leader and author whose teachings have influenced the fabric of contemporary spirituality. His journey from a Harvard psychology professor to a beacon of Eastern philosophy epitomizes a quest for deeper truth and meaning.

His most vital contribution to the world was his role in bridging Eastern and Western spiritual practices. Through books like “Be Here Now,” Ram Dass introduced the West to concepts like mindfulness and the power of presence. His teachings emphasized the importance of inner peace and the interconnectedness of all life.

The quote, “The most exquisite paradox… as soon as you give it all up, you can have it all. As long as you want power, you can’t have it. The minute you don’t want power, you’ll have more than you ever dreamed possible,” encapsulates the essence of Ram Dass’s philosophy. This profound paradox highlights the futility of clinging to power and control. It suggests that true empowerment comes from surrender and the relinquishment of ego-driven desires.

In our current society, this quote resonates with those seeking liberation from the relentless pursuit of status and influence. It encourages a reevaluation of our values and aspirations, steering us toward a path of selflessness and service. Ram Dass’s words prompt us to consider that in letting go of our attachments to power, we open ourselves to a wealth of spiritual abundance and authentic connections.

The legacy of Ram Dass lies in his call to inner transformation and selfless living. His teachings continue to inspire personal growth, compassion, and a deeper understanding of life’s true riches, making his insights as pertinent now as ever in a world yearning for genuine fulfillment and peace.


Ram Dass Says: “A feeling of aversion or attachment toward something is your clue that there’s work to be done.”

Ram Dass Says: “As long as you have certain desires about how it ought to be you can’t see how it is.”

Ram Dass Says: “As we acquire a certain degree of equanimity in self-image, we are that much more likely to feel empathy for those around us. We know what it’s like to be a “self” moving through the world of “others.” When someone feels particularly isolated or in pain, we don’t need a great deal of information in order to come to his or her aid.”

Ram Dass Says: “As we grow in our consciousness, there will be more compassion and more love, and then the barriers between people, between religions, between nations will begin to fall. Yes, we have to beat down the separateness.”

Ram Dass Says: “Compassion refers to the arising in the heart of the desire to relieve the suffering of all beings.

Ram Dass Says: “Cosmic humor, especially about your own predicament, is an important part of your journey.”

Ram Dass Says: “Each of us finds his unique vehicle for sharing with others his bit of wisdom.”

Ram Dass Says: “Early in the journey you wonder how long the journey will take and whether you will make it in this lifetime. Later you will see that where you are going is HERE and you will arrive NOW…so you stop asking.”

Ram Dass Says: “Emotions are like waves. Watch them disappear in the distance on the vast calm ocean.”

Ram Dass Says: “Every religion is the product of the conceptual mind attempting to describe the mystery.”

Ram Dass Says: “Everything changes once we identify with being the witness to the story, instead of the actor in it.”

Ram Dass Says: “Faith is not a belief. Faith is what is left when your beliefs have all been blown to hell. Faith is in the heart, while beliefs are in the head. Experiences, even spiritual experiences, come and go. As long as you base your faith on experience, your faith is going to be constantly flickering, because your experiences keep changing.”

Ram Dass Says: “I am embarrassed to admit what drew me to psychology. I didn’t want to go to medical school. I was getting good grades in psychology and I was charismatic and people in the psychology department liked me. It was as low a level as that.”

Ram Dass Says: “I am not this body. I am in this body, and this is part of my incarnation and I honor it but that isn’t who I am.”

Ram Dass Says: “I can do nothing for you but work on myself…you can do nothing for me but work on yourself!”

Ram Dass Says: “I don’t really believe anything I say. Because the nature of my work concerns the spaces between the words, rather than the words themselves.”

Ram Dass Says: “I honor the place in you
where the entire Universe resides.
I honor the place of love, of light, of truth, of peace.
I honor the place within you where
if you are in that place in you, and I am in that place in me, there is only one of us”

Ram Dass Says: “I remember my first visit with my guru. He had shown that he read my mind. So I looked at the grass and I thought, ‘My god, he’s going to know all the things I don’t want people to know.’ I was really embarrassed. Then I looked up and he was looking directly at me with unconditional love.”

Ram Dass Says: “I see my life as an unfolding set of opportunities to awaken.”

Ram Dass Says: “I would say that the thrust of my life has been initially about getting free, and then realizing that my freedom is not independent of everybody else. Then I am arriving at that circle where one works on oneself as a gift to other people so that one doesn’t create more suffering. I help people as a work on myself and I work on myself to help people.”

Ram Dass Says: “If you feel free only when you meditate, you’re not really free. Freedom does not come from turning your back on your responsibilities. The game is to be in the world but not of it. Even when you find yourself feeling spaced out, disoriented, or untogether, you can make an extra effort to meet the needs of the moment, whether it’s the baby’s diapers that need changing or your income tax that is due. Don’t make meditation a cop-out from life.”

Ram Dass Says: “In a non-traditional culture such as ours, dominated by technology, we value information far more than we do wisdom. But there is a difference between the two. Information involves the acquisition, organization, and dissemination of facts; a storing-up of physical data. But wisdom involves another equally crucial function: the emptying and quieting of the mind, the application of the heart, and the alchemy of reason and feeling.”

Ram Dass Says: “In truth, there are millions and millions of stimuli that we are not even noticing, that go by, in every plane of existence, all the time. The reason we don’t notice or react to them is because we have no attachment to them. They don’t stir our desire system. Our desires affect our perception. Each of us is living in our own universe, created out of our projected attachments. That’s what we mean when we say, “You create your own universe.”We are creating that universe because of our attachments, which can also be avoidances and fears.”

Ram Dass Says: “It is only when you begin to understand that if you and I are truly in love, if I go to the place in me that is love and you to the place in you that is love we are ‘together’ in Love. We start to understand that what love means is that we are sharing a common state together. That state exists in you and it exists in me.”

Ram Dass Says: “It’s only when caterpillarness is done that one becomes a butterfly. That again is part of this paradox. You cannot rip away caterpillarness. The whole trip occurs in an unfolding process of which we have no control.”

Ram Dass Says: “I’m aware of my thoughts, but loving awareness is simply witnessing them. And loving awareness is in the moment. I have thoughts about the past and future, and those are not helpful, so I dive deep into the present and the presence and in this present moment we will find loving awareness….”

Ram Dass Says: “Knowledge all by itself, without deep wisdom, ends up becoming despair.”

Ram Dass Says: “Learning to live in the moment can be such a difficult task for even the most mindful of us, yet it’s so important in order for us to become free.”

Ram Dass Says: “Meditation brings this change. Each moment starts to have a richness or thickness of its own. Fewer moments are special as more of them become richer. This lessens the rushes, the highs and lows. As they disappear we sometimes feel a sadness and depression, a sense of having lost the richness of the romance of life. Indeed, an awakened being is not romantic, for nothing is special anymore. Every moment is all of it. No romance. Just the coming and the going. Coming and going.”

Ram Dass Says: “Only that in you which is me can hear what I’m saying.”