Swami Vivekananda is a man who needs no introduction. No words can define the significance of his teachings. Great leaders, scientists not only in India but all over the world have been inspired by Swami Vivekananda.
He is the person who spread our knowledge from Vedas and Upanishads globally. Many people still believe that Swami Vivekananda is an incarnation of Lord Shiva.
Biography of Swami Vivekananda
Name: Swami Vivekananda
Real Name: Narendranath Dutt
Nickname: Narendra K Naren
Date of Birth: 12 January 1863
Age: 39 years (in 2022)
Place of Birth: Calcutta, Bengal Presidency, British India
Date of Death: 4 July 1902
Cause of Death: Hemorrhage in the brain Vascular collapse
Place of death: Belur Math, Bengal Presidency, British India
Education: Bachelor of Arts (1884)
School: Iswarchandra Vidyasagar Metropolitan Institute (1871)
College: Presidency University (Kolkata),
General Assembly’s Institute (Scottish Church College, Kolkata)
Hometown: Kolkata, West Bengal, India
Occupation: Indian Patriot Saints and Monks
Marital Status: Married
Birth of Swami Vivekananda
Swami Vivekananda’s birth name is Narendranath Dutt. It is said that Narendra’s mother prayed to Lord Shiva for a child and Lord Shiva appeared in her dream and blessed the child.
Narendra was born on 12 January 1863 in Calcutta, West Bengal, India. He was born before sunrise and on the very important Hindu festival ‘Makarsankranti’, which means the rising of the new sun.
Early Life of Swami Vivekananda
Narendra was born in a rich family. His father Vishwanath was a lawyer and socially influential personality. Narendra’s father was a very strict and disciplined person. But his mother was the exact opposite of his father.
His mother Bhuvaneshwari Devi was a devoted housewife. His mother has deep faith in God. Narendra was dear to his mother since childhood. Narendra was a very sweet and mischievous boy at a young age. Narendra was very close to his mother. That family atmosphere was very religious.
When Narendra was very young, he sat with his mother and listened to the stories of Ramayana and Mahabharata. He also sang bhajans and worshiped with mother.
From there began his curiosity and imagination of God in the Vedas. I was deeply influenced by Lord Rama and his ideologies.
Swami Vivekananda Education
Swami Vivekananda started his primary and secondary education in Iswarchandra Vidyasagar Institutions. After that, he got admission for graduation in Calcutta’s most popular college, Presidency College.
While studying in college, he participated in every sport like gymnastics, body building and wrestling. Swami Vivekananda was very fond of music.
Vivekananda was a very inquisitive child from childhood. He was fond of reading, so he had a good grasp on various subjects. Narendra was influenced by his family’s religious environment, which resulted in him reading Hindu scriptures, the Bhagavad Gita and other Upanishads.
He did not stop here, on the other hand, he explored Christianity and Western philosophy through Herbert Spencer and David Hume. So, he learned and developed dynamically.
Swami Vivekananda Family _ _
Father’s Name: Vishwanath Dutta
Mother’s Name: Bhuvaneshwari Devi
Brother’s Name: Bhupendranath Dutta
Sisters: Suvarna Devi
Swami Vivekananda Nature _ _
Narendra was very kind from childhood. He had great respect for the monk. Whenever a monk came to us for alms.
Then Narendra used to give him whatever food, things and money he got. Once he was reprimanded for this and his father locked him in a room.
Narendra was a very intelligent, honest and curious child. He was the most favorite student of his teachers. He had immense respect and love for animals and nature.
First meeting of Swami Vivekananda and Ramakrishna Paramahansa
William Hastie, Principal of the Scottish Church College, was the first to introduce him to Sri Ramakrishna. Vivekananda was a seeker and found something interesting so he eventually met Sri Ramakrishna Paramahansa at Dakshineswara Kali Temple.
Ramakrishna Paramahansa recognized Narendra at first sight. In fact, Lord Vishnu appeared to Ramakrishna several times in his dreams.
And said that one day I will surely come looking for you. And you will help me reach the Supreme Father, the Supreme Soul.
Have you seen God?
Swami Vivekananda was very curious from childhood and was always interested in only one question, which was; Have you ever seen God?
He has been asking this question to everyone like monks, priests and his teachers since childhood. But he never got any reply. Narendra asked the same question to Ramakrishna.
Swami Vivekananda was very impressed with Rama Krishna Paramahansa since his last visit. He often visited her at Dakshineswar Kali temple. Where he found various solutions to the concerns that were troubling him.
Swami Vivekananda’s Turn
When Swami Vivekananda’s father died, the entire family was thrown into financial trouble. He did not even get proper food for two days. At that time Vivekananda was disillusioned and believed that there was no such thing as God or Supreme Energy.
He went to Ramakrishna and requested him to pray for his family, but Ramakrishna refused and told him to pray before Kali Devi.
But because of his vow he could not ask for money and wealth so he prayed for solitude and sanity. That day he experienced enlightenment. Then he really had faith in Ramakrishna and adopted him as his guru.
The purest bond
Swami Vivekananda was very attached to his Guru Ramakrishna. Rama Krishna also foretold his death, so he wished to impart his early education and knowledge to Swami Vivekananda.
Ramakrishna spoke the last words to Vivekananda that Vivekananda I have given my all to you and now I can attain moksha. I have no wish left.
So, he imparted all his knowledge to Vivekananda and told him that finally, the day for which you were born has come. Ramakrishna told him now go and explain the importance of our knowledge of Vedas and Hinduism to the youth of the country.
From Narendranath Dutta to Swami Vivekananda
Ramakrishna was suffering from throat cancer in the last few years of his life. So Ramakrishna went to Cossipore with his disciples including Vivekananda. They all gathered and took care of their master.
On 16 August 1886, Sri Ramakrishna Paramahansa renounced his mortal body and the material world. From what Narendra learned from his Guru, he began to teach others that the most effective way to worship God is to serve others.
In 1887, fifteen of Ramakrishna’s subjects, including Narendranath, took monastic vows. And from there Narendra became Swami Vivekananda. The word ‘Vivekananda’ means ‘the joy of the experience of knowledge’.
After Ramakrishna’s death, all fifteen disciples lived together in Baranagar, North Calcutta, which was known as the Ramakrishna Math. They all practiced yoga and meditation.
Furthermore, Vivekananda left the ashram and began his journey across India on foot, which he called a “parivarajaka”, meaning a monk who is always travelling.
During his travels, he has experienced various cultural, lifestyle and religious aspects of the people. Also he felt the daily life, pains and sufferings of common people.
A message to the world from America
Swamiji received an invitation from the World Parliament in Chicago, USA. He was eager to represent India on the world stage and share his guru’s philosophy at gatherings. After a series of misfortunes he went to a religious gathering.
On 11 September 1893, Swami Vivekananda entered the platform and addressed the people of America with the words, “My brothers and sisters of America”. Hearing these words, the entire American public was shocked.
As soon as he said this, all the spectators got up from their chairs. He made people aware of the basic ideologies of our Vedas and their spiritual meanings etc.
These words were enough to show the importance of Indian culture to the whole world. It was the day Vivekananda told the whole world about the importance of India and Indian culture.
Establishment of Ramakrishna Mission
Love of country and soil did not allow Swami Vivekananda to stay abroad for long and Vivekananda returned to India in 1897. Swamiji settled in Calcutta.
where he laid the foundation of the Ramakrishna Mission at Belur Math on May 1, 1897. In America, Swami Vivekananda realized that American people spend thousands of dollars on their lifestyle, clothes, accessories.
People of India do not get even one meal a day. These experiences shattered him and made him want to do something for these people.
The primary aim behind the establishment of Ramakrishna Mission was to help the poor society, the afflicted or the needy. He has served his country through many endeavors.
Swamiji and other disciples established many schools, colleges, rehabilitation centers and hospitals. Seminars, conferences and workshops as well as rehabilitation work were used to spread the teachings of Vedanta throughout the country.
Much of the spiritual practice, learned by Swami Vivekananda, Sri Ramakrishna. According to Vivekananda, the ultimate goal of life is to attain freedom of the soul, which includes all religious beliefs.
Death of Swami Vivekananda
Swami Vivekananda always knew that he would not live to the age of 40 and on 4 July 1902 at the age of 39, Swami Vivekananda left this material world and merged into the Supreme Energy forever.
When is Swami Vivekananda Jayanthi celebrated?
India celebrates Swami Vivekananda’s birth anniversary on January 12 every year which is known as Swami Vivekananda Jayanti or National Youth Day.
There is no greater example of brotherhood than this. That is why every year on September 11 the whole world celebrates World Brotherhood Day.