Hindu monk Swami Vivekananda is regarded as one of India’s most illustrious spiritual figures. He was not merely a spiritual thinker; he was also a prolific writer, an effective orator, and a fervent nationalist. Swami Vivekananda advanced Ramakrishna Paramhansa’s free-thinking philosophy into a brand-new paradigm. He gave his all to his country, working relentlessly to improve society, serve the needy, and the underprivileged. Read all about Swami Vivekananda in this article for UPSC.
Swami Vivekanand was in charge of reviving Hindu spirituality and making Hinduism a respected religion over the world. His message of brotherhood between all people and self-awakening is still pertinent today, particularly against the backdrop of the current global political unrest. Many people have found inspiration in the young monk and his teachings, and his words—particularly for the nation’s youth—have evolved into self-improvement objectives. Because of this, India observes his birthday, January 12, as National Youth Day.
Swami Vivekananda Early Life
Swami Vivekanand was one of the eight children of Vishwanath Dutta and Bhuvaneshwari Devi and was born in Calcutta as Narendranath Dutta into a wealthy Bengali family. On January 12, 1863, the day of Makar Sankranti, he was born. Father Vishwanath was a prominent member of society and a successful lawyer. Mother Bhuvaneshwari, who had a powerful, godly mind, had a significant influence on her son Narendranath.
Swami Vivekananda Education
Narendranath was a bright little boy who showed intelligence. His playful demeanour belied his love of vocal and instrumental music. His academic performance was outstanding both at the Metropolitan institution and the Presidency College in Calcutta. By the time he received his college degree, he had broadened his knowledge of several subjects.
He participated in athletics, wrestling, gymnastics, and bodybuilding. He read voraciously and learned practically everything there was to know. He studied western philosophy, history, and spirituality by David Hume, Johann Gottlieb Fichte, and Herbert Spencer in addition to Hindu scriptures like the Bhagvad Gita and the Upanishads.
Swami Vivekananda Biography
Despite growing up in a religious environment at home and having a pious mother, Narendranath experienced a severe spiritual crisis in his early years. His in-depth understanding caused him to begin to doubt the existence of God, and for a while, he held an agnostic belief. However, he was unable to deny the presence of a Supreme Being.
For a while, he was involved with the Keshab Chandra Sen-led Brahmo Movement. Unlike the idol-worshipping, superstitious Hinduism, the Bramho Samaj recognized only one God. He was left with a plethora of unsolved philosophical issues about whether God existed. Vivekananda first learned of Sri Ramakrishna during this period of spiritual difficulty through William Hastie, the Principal of the Scottish Church College.
Swami Vivekananda Lecture at World Parliament
He learned about the World Parliament of Religions, which took place in Chicago, America, in 1893, while he was travelling. In order to represent India, Hinduism, and his Guru Sri Ramakrishna’s teachings, he was eager to attend the gathering. While contemplating on the rocks of Kanyakumari, India’s southernmost tip, he experienced the affirmation of his wishes. On May 31, 1893, Vivekananda, Raja of Khetri, and Ajit Singh departed from Bombay for Chicago after money was donated by his followers in Madras (now Chennai).
On his journey to Chicago, he endured unfathomable challenges, yet his enthusiasm never wavered. When it was time, on September 11, 1893, he entered the platform and startled everyone with the words “My brothers and sisters of America.” The audience applauded him standing ovation for the opening sentence. He continued by elaborating on Vedanta’s philosophical foundations and their spiritual relevance, putting Hinduism on the map of major world religions.
He stayed in America for the following 2.5 years, starting the Vedanta Society of New York in 1894. He also went to the UK to spread the teachings of Hindu Spiritualism and Vedanta to the western world.
Swami Vivekananda Legacy
The actual pillars of India’s national unity were unveiled to the world by Swami Vivekananda. He demonstrated how a country with such a wide range of cultures can be brought together by a sense of brotherhood and humanity. Vivekananda addressed the shortcomings of western civilization as well as India’s role in overcoming them. Swamiji brought together the East and the West, religion and science, the past and the present, as Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose famously said. He is great because of this.
His lessons have helped our countrymen develop unparalleled levels of self-respect, self-reliance, and self-assertion. Vivekananda was effective in creating a fictitious link between Eastern and Western cultures. He provided Westerners with interpretations of Hindu scriptures, philosophy, and way of life. He helped them understand that, despite its underdevelopment and poverty, India had a significant cultural contribution to contribute. He was instrumental in breaking India’s cultural barrier to the rest of the globe.
Swami Vivekananda Death
It was predicted by Swami Vivekananda that he would not live past the age of forty. He continued his day’s work at the Belur Math, instructing the students in Sanskrit grammar, on July 4, 1902. In the evening, he retired to his room, and about nine, he passed away while meditating. The renowned saint was burned on the banks of the Ganges after allegedly achieving “Mahasamadhi.”
Swami Vivekananda UPSC
- Swami Vivekananda was born in Calcutta in January 1863 as Narendranath Dutta.
- Ramakrishna Paramahamsa, who later served as Swami Vivekananda’s Guru, had an influence on him.
- As a monk, Swami Vivekananda traversed all of India and the West.
- Especially Advaita Vedanta and Yoga philosophies, his works and lectures significantly contributed to the propagation of Hindu philosophy in the West..
- He formally took monastic vows in 1886.
- Swami Vivekananda founded numerous Mathas in India, with the Belur Math in Belur, Howrah district, being the most significant.
- The Ramakrishna Mission was established by Swami Vivekananda in May 1897.
- Swami Vivekananda passed away in West Bengal’s Belur Math in 1902.
Swami Vivekananda FAQs
Q) What was Swami Vivekananda famous for?
Ans. The most famous speech given by Swami Vivekananda (1863–1902) during the 1893 World’s Parliament of Religions, in which he introduced Hinduism to America and appealed for religious tolerance and an end to extremism, is what makes him famous in the United States.
Q) What is Swami Vivekananda story?
Ans. In the midst of the Makar Sankranti festival on January 12, 1863, in his ancestral house at 3 Gourmohan Mukherjee Street in Calcutta, the capital of British India, Vivekananda was born Narendranath Datta. He was one of nine siblings in a conventional family.
Q) Was Vivekananda a freedom fighter?
Ans. Swami Vivekananda served as one of the most inspiring intellectual fervor behind the Indian freedom struggle.
Q) What is the slogan of Vivekananda?
Ans. A slogan by Swami Vivekananda is ‘arise, awake, and stop not till the goal is reached.
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