Self-control will come as a matter of course if one repeats God’s name constantly, and is earnest in spiritual endeavors. The name of God has such intrinsic power that all the internal and external organs become naturally subdued by it. But then, one has to call on Him with sincere love. If one can somehow acquire love for God, one has nothing more to worry about; one can then advance towards Him very quickly. If one somehow acquires the feeling that God is one’s own, one can set one’s mind completely at rest. One cannot, however, have real love for God so long as one’s mind is preoccupied with sensuous things. How can anyone have love for God, pure and untouched by sin as he is, unless one’s own mind becomes purified? For that, one needs intense spiritual practice and sincere yearning for God. The purer the receptacle the quicker is His manifestation. Just try a little with determination, and see whether it happens or not. You have to consider spiritual practice the chief aim of your lives; as for the other work and activities, lectures, discourses, and so on – they are but secondary.
(p.219-20, For Seekers of God, Swami Shivananda’s advice on 8 December 1929)