Swami Vivekanand is great hindu monk who spread the message of vedants in western world. He leave this mortal world in the age of 39 years only but his world will give light to the world forver to the humanity.
Dr. Kamal Singh Rathore BN Institute of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Udaipur-INDIA [email_address] +91 9828325713(m)
Episode with Maharaja of Alwar One day at the court of Alwar the young westernized Maharaja who was skeptic asked Vivekananda: Maharaja: Swamiji, you talk of God. Do you believe in the stone gods in the temples?” Swamiji: Yes Maharaja: But How can God be a thing made of stone? Swamiji turned to the prime minister and asked him to take down the picture of the Maharaja and give it to him. When the minister did so, Swamiji asked him to spit on it. The minister was scared and perplexed. He could not do it. Swamiji then explained: “Do you see my point now? The Stone God is like your potrait – a symbol. It helps the common people understand God”.
Contribution to World Culture 1. New Understanding of Religion : One of the most significant contributions of Swami Vivekananda to the modern world is his interpretation of religion as a universal experience of transcendent Reality, common to all humanity. Swamiji met the challenge of modern science by showing that religion is as scientific as science itself; religion is the ‘science of consciousness’. As such, religion and science are not contradictory to each other but are complementary. This universal conception frees religion from the hold of superstitions, dogmatism, priestcraft and intolerance, and makes religion the highest and noblest pursuit – the pursuit of supreme Freedom, supreme Knowledge, supreme Happiness. 2. New View of Man : Vivekananda’s concept of ‘potential divinity of the soul’ gives a new, ennobling concept of man. The present age is the age of humanism which holds that man should be the chief concern and centre of all activities and thinking. Through science and technology man has attained great prosperity and power, and modern methods of communication and travel have converted human society into a ‘global village’. But the degradation of man has also been going on apace, as witnessed by the enormous increase in broken homes, immorality, violence, crime, etc. in modern society. Vivekananda’s concept of potential divinity of the soul prevents this degradation, divinizes human relationships, and makes life meaningful and worth living. Swamiji has laid the foundation for ‘spiritual humanism’, which is manifesting itself through several neo-humanistic movements and the current interest in meditation, Zen etc all over the world. 3. New Principle of Morality and Ethics : The prevalent morality, in both individual life and social life, is mostly based on fear – fear of the police, fear of public ridicule, fear of God’s punishment, fear of Karma, and so on. The current theories of ethics also do not explain why a person should be moral and be good to others. Vivekananda has given a new theory of ethics and new principle of morality based on the intrinsic purity and oneness of the Atman. We should be pure because purity is our real nature, our true divine Self or Atman. Similarly, we should love and serve our neighbours because we are all one in the Supreme Spirit known as Paramatman or Brahman. 4. Bridge between the East and the West : Another great contribution of Swami Vivekananda was to build a bridge between Indian culture and Western culture. He did it by interpreting Hindu scriptures and philosophy and the Hindu way of life and institutions to the Western people in an idiom which they could understand. He made the Western people realize that they had to learn much from Indian spirituality for their own well-being. He showed that, in spite of her poverty and backwardness, India had a great contribution to make to world culture. In this way he was instrumental in ending India’s cultural isolation from the rest of the world. He was India’s first great cultural ambassador to the West. Contribution to Hinduism 1. Identity : It was Swami Vivekananda who gave to Hinduism as a whole a clear-cut identity, a distinct profile. Before Swamiji came Hinduism was a loose confederation of many different sects. Swamiji was the first religious leader to speak about the common bases of Hinduism and the common ground of all sects. He was the first person, as guided by his Master Sri Ramakrishna, to accept all Hindu doctrines and the views of all Hindu philosophers and sects as different aspects of one total view of Reality and way of life known as Hinduism. Speaking about Swamiji’s role in giving Hinduism its distinct identity, Sister Nivedita wrote: “… it may be said that when he began to speak it was of ‘the religious ideas of the Hindus’, but when he ended, Hinduism had been created.” 2. Unification : Before Swamiji came, there was a lot of quarrel and competition among the various sects of Hinduism. Similarly, the protagonists of different systems and schools of philosophy were claiming their views to be the only true and valid ones. By applying Sri Ramakrishna’s doctrine of Harmony ( Samanvaya ) Swamiji brought about an overall unification of Hinduism on the basis of the principle of unity in diversity. Speaking about Swamiji’s role in this field K M Pannikar , the eminent historian and diplomat, wrote: “This new Shankaracharya may well be claimed to be a unifier of Hindu ideology.” 3. Defence : Another important service rendered by Swamiji was to raise his voice in defence of Hinduism. In fact, this was one of the main types of work he did in the West. Christian missionary propaganda had given a wrong understanding of Hinduism and India in Western minds. Swamiji had to face a lot of opposition in his attempts to defend Hinduism. 4. Meeting the Challenges : At the end of the 19th century, India in general, and Hinduism in particular, faced grave challenges from Western materialistic life, the ideas of Western free society, and the proselytizing activities of Christians. Vivekananda met these challenges by integrating the best elements of Western culture in Hindu culture. 5. New Ideal of Monasticism : A major contribution of Vivekananda to Hinduism is the rejuvenation and modernization of monasticism. In this new monastic ideal, followed in the Ramakrishna Order, the ancient principles of renunciation and God realization are combined with service to God in man ( Shiva jnane jiva seva ). Vivekananda elevated social service to the status of divine service. 6. Refurbishing of Hindu Philosophy and Religious Doctrines : Vivekananda did not merely interpret ancient Hindu scriptures and philosophical ideas in terms of modern thought. He also added several illuminating original concepts based on his own transcendental experiences and vision of the future. This, however, needs a detailed study of Hindu philosophy which cannot be attempted here.
Swami vivekananda life and work
Swami Vivekananda Foremost Saint of Modern India The Man and His MessageDr. Kamal Singh RathoreBN Institute of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Udaipur-INDIAkamalsrathore@gmail.com+91 9828325713(m)
Early life… Born: January 12, 1863 in 3, Gor Mukharjee Street, Calcutta on Makara Sankaranti Day at 06:33:33 Morning. His name at birth was Narendranath (Naren, Durgadas, Vile, Bile, Vireshwar). Father: Sri Visvanath Datta (s/o Durgaprasad), a very successful and distinguished lawyer. Mother: Bhuvaneshwari, a very pious lady. Prayer of the Lord was a way of life. Siblings: Mahendra Nath, Bhupendra Nath and Swarnmayi
Childhood and Early Youth… Narendranath was highly inquisitive and bright in his studies and play. He was well read and had a remarkable power of understanding and retention. He completed Bachelor Arts degree from Scottish Church College, Calcutta in 1884. He was a great thinker and often challenged existing customs and rituals. He often wondered about this world and its Creator. He extensively studied different religious and philosophical systems of East and West. However, no one could satisfy his curiosity and he developed a feeling that the whole talk of God was a myth.
Transformation… Encounters with Sri Ramakrishna… Silver Coin Test Vision of the Lord Asking Boons from God Narendranath spent about 5 years as a disciple of Sri Ramakrishna and learnt everything concerning Spirituality based on Advaita philosophy. Sri Ramakrishna passed on all his spiritual power to Narendranath before going into samadhi. Narendranath takes charge of Ramakrishna mission at the age of 23, comes to be known as Swami Vivekananda.
Later Life… Swami Vivekananda travelled across the country from Himalayas to Kanyakumari, studying and understanding the motherland and her problems. Episode with Maharaja of Alwar about idol worship Meditated deeply at Kanyakumari on the last bit of Indian rock for 3 days and had the “Vision of one India”. He also contemplated about going West. India had to be awakened, and that could be done only by making India’s message appreciated in the West.
Visit to the West… In 1893 Swami Vivekananda sailed to America to attend the Parliament of Religions at Chicago. Episodes from his initial struggle in US… His “Sisters and Brothers of America..” speech in the religious assembly. Swami Vivekananda stayed for couple of years in the US and in England, delivering an extensive series of lectures on Vedanta philosophy preaching universality and brotherhood in various Universities and congregations. Sets up Vedanta Society in New York and England.
Return to Homeland… In 1897 Swamiji returns to India and is hailed as the new Sankaracharya. Establishes Ramakrishna Mission on May 1, 1897, which is dedicated to the task of teaching self realization and service to humanity. Establishes Belur Math in early 1898 to be a permanent abode for the monastery and monastic order. Revisits the West in 1899-90 and establishes Vedanta society in San Francisco.
Teachings… Swami Vivekananda firmly believed in the equality of mankind and preached extensively to remove biases and exploitation based on caste, creed, race and gender. Swamiji sought to bring back the spiritual awakening of the nation by instilling faith and pride for India’s culture and heritage. Swamiji is widely regarded as the India’s foremost nation builders. Many other subsequent national leaders including Gandhiji, Nehru, Aurobindo were influenced by his teachings on spirituality and service to the fellow beings.
Swamiji’s contributions Contribution to World Culture: New Understanding of Religion Bridge between the East and the West New Principle of Morality and Ethics New View of Man Contribution to Hinduism: Identity Unification Defense Meeting the Challenges New Ideal for Monasticism Refurbishing of Religious Doctrines
Maha samadhi… Swami Vivekananda attained maha samadhi on July 4, 1902 at his Belur Math during meditation. He had a premonition about this. Three days before his death he pointed out the spot for this cremation—the one at which a temple in his memory stands today. In the morning of July 4, he gave instructions concerning the future of Ramakrishna mission to one of his disciples. He had remarked to several persons that he would not live to be forty. His teachings and mission continues to inspire us even after 110 years…
Belur Math Belur Math is the headquarters of Ramakrishna Mission and Math. Situated over 40 acres on the banks of river Hooghly (Ganga) in Howrah, about an hour drive from Kolkata. Campus includes: Temples dedicated to Sri Ramakrishna, Sri Sarada Devi and Swami Vivekananda. It also houses the main monastry of the Ramakrishna Order. Administrative offices for the mission. Resident Training Center for Vedic education. Charitable Dispensary to serve the sick and needy. “Service to man is the service to the Lord” is the founding principle of Ramakrishna Mission. Today there are mission centers in almost all states of India and several other countries.
SwamiVivekananda– the photowas taken inBushnellStudio inSan Francisco, 1900
Advaita Ashrama, Mayavati, a branch ofthe Ramakrishna Math, founded on 19March 1899, later published many ofSwami Vivekanandas work, now publishes
Swami Vivekanand Way..The Chicago Art Institute was the venue of the famous Hindu monk Swami Vivekanandaaddressed the Parliament of the Worlds Religions in 1893. On September 11, 1995, theArt Institute put up a bronze plaque to commemorate Swami Vivekanandas historicaddress. The plaque reads:"On November 11, 1995, the stretch of Michigan Avenue that passes in front
plaque of Swami Vivekananda at theprestigious Art Institute of Chicago
Monks from Belur Math… Click to edit Master text styles Second level Third level Fourth level Fifth level
Pearls of Wisdom no ep u sle yo nd a ch of o ve e ak n ea o rem , aw thi t s. se Wi ri . er serieA re ow mi o s th ep d m e i ts an er wanth ll a
" This is the one centralidea in the Gita: workincessantly, but be notattached to it "" That wonderful poem,without one note in it, ofweakness orunmanliness "
Pearls of Wisdom Ma r Any ch o thin n! you g th wea at minte k ph ake llect ysic s uall ally, y an reje d sp ct a iritu s po ally, ison .
Pearls of Wisdom er pow e to t he mor li mit d. T he ore i s no m in e m on he re an t is, th ear um d iT e h a te o b cr et. f th en tr ht t e seo onc is br oug s th c ti ow er tha p p oi nt, on e
Pearls of Wisdom Blam fault e none s, s t fo r y feet and ourresp , an upo own o n si d ta n yo bility k e th ur o upo e wh wn n yo ole u rs e lves .
Pearls of WisdomConquer yourself, and the whole universe is yours.
Pearls of WisdomLet us work without desire for name or fame or rule overothers. Let us be free from the triple bonds of lust, greed of gain, and anger.
Pearls of WisdomTake up one idea. Make that one ideayour life. Think of it, dream of it. Live on that idea. Let the brain, muscles, nerves, everypart of your body be full of that ideaand just leave every other idea alone. This is the way to “SUCCESS”
Pearls of Wisdom A few whole hearted,sincere, energetic men and women can do more in a year than a mob in a century.
Click to edit Master text styles Second level Third level Fourth level Fifth level
If you want to know India read SwamiVivekananda Nobel laurette Rabindra Nath
When I read Swami ji, I become highly motivated, he is anchorNetaji Subhash Chandra Boseof my life.
‘Our people have lost faith in themselves,’ said Swamiji sadly ‘I will bringback that faith to them. Now I go; but when I return, I shall awaken thesleeping millions of my people.’
‘Whatever you are doing,’ he said, ‘put yourwhole mind on it. If you are shooting, yourmind should be only on the target. Thenyou will never miss. If you are learning yourlessons, think only of the lesson. In mycountry boys are taught to do this.’- Swami Vivekananda
"My whole ambition in lifeis to set in motionmachinery which will bringnoble ideas to the door ofeverybody, and then letmen and women settletheir own fate.Let themknow what our forefathersas well as other nationshave thought on the mostmomentous questions oflife. We are to put thechemicals together; thecrystallization will be doneby nature according to herlaws. Keep the mottobefore you "ELEVATIONOF THE MASSESWITHOUT INJURINGTHEIR RELIGION” -SWAMI VIVEKANANDA
But, mind you, this is lifes experience; if you really want the good of others, thewhole universe may stand against you and cannot hurt you. It must crumblebefore your power of the Lord Himself in you if you are sincere and reallyunselfish.
"Religion is the realization of Spirit as Spirit. Not spirit as matter."