Swami Vivekananda designed this emblem and described in the following words:

"The wavy waters in the picture are symbolic of Karma; the lotus, of Bhakti; and the rising sun, of Jnana. The encircling serpent is indicative of Yoga and the awakened Kundalini Shakti, while the swan in the picture stands for the Paramatman (Supreme Self). Therefore the idea of the picture is that by the union of Karma, Jnana, Bhakti, and Yoga, the vision of the Paramatman is obtained."