Shishu Sansaar | Stories-Indian Reformers
Birth: 12 January 1863
Death: 4 July 1902
Born to Vishwanatha Datta and Bhuvaneshwari Devi of Calcutta on 12 January 1863, the youthful Narendra embraced the agnostic philosophies of the Western mind along with the worship of science, graduating from the Calcutta University.
At the same time, vehement in his desire to know the truth about God, he questioned people of holy reputation, asking them if they had seen God. He found such a person in Sri Ramakrishna, who became his teacher, mentor and master, allayed his doubts, gave him God vision, and transformed him into sage and prophet with authority to teach. His name changed to Swami Vivekananda after he took ‘Sanyasa’.
After Sri Ramakrishna's death, Vivekananda renounced the world and criss-crossed India as a wandering monk. His mounting compassion for India's people drove him to seek their material help from the West. Accepting an opportunity to represent Hinduism at Chicago's Parliament of Religions in 1893, Vivekananda won instant celebrity in America and a ready forum for his spiritual teaching. The unknown monk of India suddenly leapt into fame and those who saw or heard him even once cherished his memory even after a lapse of more than half a century, such was his personality!
In America Vivekananda's mission was the interpretation of India's spiritual culture, especially in its Vedantic setting. He also tried to enrich the religious consciousness of the Americans through the rational and humanistic teachings of the Vedanta philosophy. For three years he spread the Vedanta philosophy and religion in America and England and then returned to India to found the Ramakrishna Math and Mission. Exhorting his nation to spiritual greatness, he wakened India to a new national consciousness. He died July 4, 1902, after a second, much shorter sojourn in the West. His lectures and writings have been gathered into nine volumes.
List of Books on and by Swami Vivekananda
Memorial Plaque inside the Art Institute - The plaque reads: "On this site between September 11 and 27, 1893, Swami Vivekananda (1863-1902), the first Hindu monk from India to teach Vedanta in America, addressed the World’s Parliament of Religions, held in conjunction with the World’s Columbian Exposition. His unprecedented success opened the way for the dialogue between eastern and western religions." On 11 November 1995, the stretch of Michigan Avenue that passes in front of the Art Institute was formally conferred the honorary name “Swami Vivekananda Way.”
Created by Sushma Gupta on March 15, 2009
Modified on 05/05/13