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150 Years of Swami Vivekananda


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  • 1. 150 Years of Swami Vivekananda Progress of Humanity Dr.T.V.Rao MD Swami Vivekananda was born in an aristocraticBengali Kayastha family of Calcutta on 12 January 1863.Vivekanandas parents influenced his thinking—his father byhis rationality and his mother by her religious temperament. Thenatural tendency of Vivekanandas mind, like that of his Master,Sri Ramakrishna, was to soar above the world and forget itselfin contemplation of the Absolute. From his childhood, heshowed an inclination towards spirituality and God realisation.His guru, Sri Ramakrishna, taught him Advaita Vedanta (non-dualism); that all religions are true and that service to man wasthe most effective worship of God. Swami Vivekananda wasone of the greatest patriots and spiritual leaders India has everproduced. Through his travels and lectures all over India andabroad, he awakened the minds of Indians and other Nationalsto their cultural heritage. India is an emerging power in theworld with inbuilt culture, religion, and deep sense of humanconcern. I wonder how we live as a Nation with so manycultures, and conflicts, the vision of great thinkers likeVivekananda and many others still unites and awakens, whichcontinues to be our responsibility to the future of our Nation.India’s independence brought us lot of growth and alsounlimited corruption and greed of the well do people. The voiceof poor is more of politics than the real concern to the welfare ofthe people. We should rethink the philosophy of SwamiVivekananda who believed a countrys future depends on itspeople, so he mainly stressed on man, "man-making is mymission", thats how he described his teaching. He wanted “to
  • 2. set in motion machinery which will bring noblest ideas to thedoorstep of even the poorest and the meanest. SwamiVivekananda believed that the essence of Hinduism was bestexpressed in the Vedanta philosophy, based on theinterpretation of Adi Shankara.He summarized the Vedantas teachings as follows,Each soul is potentially divine, The goal is to manifest thisDivinity within by controlling nature, external and internal. Dothis either by work, or worship, or mental discipline, orphilosophy—by one, or more, or all of these—and be free.This is the whole of religion. Doctrines, or dogmas, or rituals, orbooks, or temples, or forms, are but secondary importance. Alover of mankind, he strove to promote peace and humanbrotherhood on the spiritual foundation of the VedanticOneness of existence. A mystic of the highest order,Vivekananda had a direct and intuitive experience of Reality.He derived his ideas from that unfailing source of wisdom andoften presented them in the soul stirring language of poetry. Inthe course of a short life of thirty-nine years (1863-1902), ofwhich only ten were devoted to public activities-and those, too,in the midst of acute physical suffering-he left for posterity hisfour classics: Jnana-Yoga, Bhakti-Yoga, Karma-Yoga, andRaja-Yoga, all of which are outstanding treatises on Hinduphilosophy. In addition, he delivered innumerable lectureswhich have attention of west to east as a source of spiritualenlightenment, wrote inspired letters in his own hand to hismany friends and disciples, composed numerous poems, andacted as spiritual guide to the many seekers, who came to himfor instruction. He also organized the Ramakrishna Order ofmonks, which is the most outstanding religious organization ofmodern India. It is devoted to the propagation of the Hinduspiritual culture not only in the Swamis native land, but also in
  • 3. America and in other parts of the world. He has contributed hismight with complete works, of which the Karma yoga forms theessence to the progress of our Nation where idealism anddogmatism still do not vanish; if we practice little of karma yoga,as it is the science of achieving perfection in action we can turnall our co-humans as great contributors to our Nation. Still hecontinues to be a hero in the minds of many, an essence ofreading Swami Vivekananda can even make us heroic andgreat personalities in the world have realised his contributionjust not only on humanity, but the problem of human survival,"writes Romain Rolland, "The master teachings great music,phrases in the style of Beethoven, stirring rhythms like themarch of Handel choruses. I cannot touch these sayings of his,scattered as they are through the pages of books, at thirtyyears distance, without receiving a thrill through my body likean electric shock. And what shocks, what transports, must havebeen produced when in burning words they issued from the lipsof the hero! Among the many quotes of Swami which standsgood to any one irrespective of religious faith ‘We areresponsible for what we are, and whatever we wish ourselvesto be, we have the power to make ourselves. If what we arenow has been the result of our own past actions, it certainlyfollows that whatever we wish to be in future can be producedby our present actions; so we have to know how to act.” Thedream of Swami that India has to overcome the poverty witheducation stands to his vision, “the goal of mankind isknowledge. Now this knowledge is inherent in man. Noknowledge comes from outside: it is all inside. What we say aman knows, should, in strict psychological language, be whathe discovers or unveils; what man learns is really what hediscovers by taking the cover off his own soul, which is a mineof infinite knowledge. “The vision of Swami Vivekananda guidesme and every one, we all educated people should contribute
  • 4. little of the though and concern to poor down ridden, helplesspeople India our Nation is certain to become a Intellectual andSpiritual power to guide the Humanity irrespective of Humanidentify with any