Published Article

Swami Vivekananda: A Young Man of 30 Years & 130 Years of Impact

Sri Anish | TimesNowNews.com| October 08, 2023

“I am proud to belong to a religion which has taught the world both tolerance and universal acceptance. We believe not only in universal toleration, but we accept all religions as true. I am proud to belong to a nation which has sheltered the persecuted and the refugees of all religions and all nations of the earth”. ~ Swamiji

“I am proud to belong to a religion which has taught the world both tolerance and universal acceptance. We believe not only in universal toleration, but we accept all religions as true. I am proud to belong to a nation which has sheltered the persecuted and the refugees of all religions and all nations of the earth”.

These are excerpts from the famous speech given by Swami Vivekananda on September 11th, 1893 at the first ‘World Parliament of Religion’ in Chicago, USA. After centuries of foreign invasions, plunder and during the British rule in India, this speech was the beginning of the process of awakening the spirit of ‘Bhavani Bharati’ and repositioning Bharat as the ‘Jagat Guru’ at the world’s largest platform of that time. Swami Ji was the first Indian spiritual master to visit the USA. He created this new Indo-US pathway for the spiritual evolution of our fellow friends in the faraway lands and since then numerous spiritual luminaries have been going around the world to spread the light of Bharat’s spiritual wisdom.

“A single seed can create the whole earth into a thriving forest”.

At that time, Swami Ji was just 30 years old. To realize the eternal wisdom of Sanathan Dharma and spread it in unchartered foreign lands with no money or means is unfathomable. Remember, this was 1893, we are talking about 130 years ago, when Bharat was still under the grip of British rule. One can only imagine the hardship & unfavourable atmosphere of those years which Swami Ji must have faced. But once your eyes are set on the massive work towards world peace and well-being of humanity, and your heart is filled with the divine force of oneness, then nothing can seem impossible.

Since then, the seeds that Swami Ji sowed have resulted in the creation of a huge forest of hundreds of schools, universities, temples, residential ashrams, scores of humanitarian projects and creation of thousands of committed teachers. The work of Swami Ji has transformed millions of lives worldwide and his impact is continuously spreading. Swami Ji’s work and teachings are becoming exceedingly relevant now. This is what humanity needs in this Yuga.

So, what is the essence that one must learn from Swami Vivekananda’s contribution to humanity?

“A single seed can create the whole earth into a thriving forest”.

Creating a new world of love, peace, sustainability and awakening

We need to create a new world of love, peace, sustainability and awakening. But how do we start? Any process of transformation begins from the ‘self’. You cannot go out there to change the world without first working on your own self. Swami Vivekananda spent many years perfecting his own self first before he ventured out to transform anybody else.

  1. And how do we transform ourselves?
  2. Can we afford to retreat from our active personal, social and professional lives to go into a hermitage or an ashram for years together to first perfect ourselves?

No, that might not be possible for almost every one of us.

So, what must be the path ahead?

‘Holistic education system which incorporates aspects of Seva’. 

Here is a proposed solution;

Create a ‘Holistic education system which incorporates aspects of Seva’. 

Some pointers towards this:

We must continuously educate ourselves on not just any relevant, skill-based subject but also on the ‘essence of life based on our vast Indic knowledge systems’.

Create new education models for the young and the youth based on the principle of ‘Four Purushartha – Dharma, Artha, Kama, Moksha’.

(The above two pointers will help expand the minds of learners beyond the current focus on insecurity, competition and greed.)

Create a big focus on the works of Seva (selfless service) to help, uplift and add value in the life of others as part of the holistic education models.

(This will help the learner inculcate life-affirming values of trust, cooperation and generosity.)

Through this, the learners will also get a glimpse of true happiness which comes ‘when the minds are enlightened and hearts are expanded’. And that happens when one connects with and supports the others.

To implement these pointers, one does not need to wait for the government’s policy support or any formal systematic changes, if that happens it is most welcome, but these initiatives can be taken at our personal levels with a smaller field of impact. But one thing is sure, ‘as one walks on this path of self-evolution earnestly, the field of impact starts to grow exponentially’. So, start small, at any scale that is possible with your current means and let nature work its magic to grow this small sapling into a huge forest.

If put to practice, these will be the most effective tools for individual self-growth, institutional excellence and world peace and that too all simultaneously. This has been the essence of Swami Vivekananda’s life and teachings.

‘As one walks on this path of self-evolution earnestly, the field of impact starts to grow exponentially’.

On this day, 130 years ago, Swami Vivekananda created history and now it is our turn.

Om Tat Sat, Sri Anish

You can also check out this article in TimesNowNews.com in Opinion section.

“महत्वाकांक्षा में अगर सर्व कल्याण जुड़े तभी वह अर्थ की तरफ ले जाता है, अन्यथा वह अनर्थ का मार्ग है"

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