Dictionary Of Hindu Religion | Sketches
Feb 12, 1824 - Oct 30, 1883 = 59 yrs
Dayanand Saraswati (pronounced as Dayaanand Saraswatee) was a reformer from Gujaraat during the 19th century. He was born in a Braahman family in Tankaaraa, near Morbee, Raajkot District, Kaathiyaavaad. Since he was born in Mool Nakshatra, he was named as Mool Shankar. His father's name was Karshanji Lalji Tiwari and mother's name was Yashoda Baaee. His father was a rich man and a great devotee of Shiv. When Mool Shankar was 8 years old, his Yagyopaveet Sanskaar was performed and his father taught him to please Shiv and keep fasts. On the Shiv Raatri Day he had to sit awake the whole night to please Shiv, but his Destiny wanted to take him somewhere else. He got married in his early teens, as was common in those days in India, but he knew that marriage was not for him and in 1846, at the age of 22 years, he ran away from home.
From 1845 to 1869, for 24 years he wandered around as an ascetic in search of religious truth. During this period he became the discile of Birajaanand. Dayanand did logical, scientific and critical analyses of all faiths ie Christianity as well as of other Indian faiths like Jainism, Buddhism and Sikhism, but he didn't criticize Islam.
He was born in a Gujaraatee family and was named as Mool Shankar. Being
extremely intelligent and observant he saw the degeneration of Hindu religion at a
very early age. He noticed that Hindu did not understand the meaning of God's idol
and did not properly respect and protect the idols. At the age of 20 his parents w
anted him to get married but he left home in search of the truth and God. He traveled
all over India and found his Guru in Mathuraa. He not only taught him the contents
of Ved, but encouraged him to uplift the Hindu society and spread Ved among them. In
1875, he established Aarya Samaaj. Whereas Ved include Sanhitaa, Braahman, Aranyak and
the Upanishad, he regarded Ved as eternal and infallible. He translated the four Ved
in Hindi language. While what he wrote in Hindi as translation contained excellent
material, much of this material was his own and not the translation of the original.
His mission was indeed noble - uplifting the society from mistaken faith based on
mythology and fanciful stories of Puraan. His main book is
Incidents Led Dayanand to Founded Aarya Samaaj
(2) When he was a little boy, his father took him to a temple on the Mahaa Shiv Raatri day telling him that there would be recitation of Mahaa Rudram, Chamakam and Namakam along with other Shlok in praise of Lord Shiv. The condition was that he should keep himself awake throughout the night on that day so that it would facilitate his attaining Moksh. The ritual started as usual at night and in the beginning everyone was vociferous in reciting. The recitations were repeated and Abhishek took place throughout the night at certain intervals as the tradition was. The Shiv Ling was decorated with flowers, garlands and fruits after the Abhishek was over. The child was eagerly observing everything. It was past midnight, the elders started dozing one by one and the recitation was fading. Some started snoring loudly. The boy suddenly spotted a little mouse which slowly came and climbed over the Shiv Ling. It went to the top and started eating the fruits kept there. After serving itself sumptuously, the mouse pissed over the stone image and ran away.
The boy immediately wanted to go home. He saw his father was also asleep like everyone except him. He left the temple and came home. After he awoke in the morning his father was searching for the boy but could not find him anywhere. He came home to tell his wife about his missing son and go in search again to the temple, but saw the boy the boy in the house itself. He got annoyed. He dragged him and asked him to explain as to why he left the temple without informing him. The boy coolly replied that since his father was in sound sleep, he did not want to disturb him and left for home. His father scolded him and told that he would not get Moksh. By then the boy narrated the story of the mouse and asked - "If that stone had no ability to drive away the mouse that pissed on it, how could it bestow him Moksh?".
His father was aghast on hearing this. The boy then told him that God is everywhere and one need not contain His power in stone. And after this he founded Aarya Samaaj branch of Hinduism which emphasizes only on Ved and Yagya.
Death of Dayanand Saraswati
He has written about 60 books (taken from Wikipedia)
Tenets of Aarya Samaaj
Created by Sushma Gupta on 3/15/06
Updated on 01/31/13