PM Modi recalls Swami Vivekananda’s iconic Chicago speech while wishing Vinoba Bhave on his birthday

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9/11 marks the birthday of Indian human rights defender Vinayak Narahari, better known as Vinoba Bhave, an ardent Gandhian who is credited with starting the Bhoodan movement among others. 9/11 also marks the anniversary of an iconic speech given by Indian thinker and philosopher Swami Vivekananda in Chicago in 1893. The speech at the World Parliament of Religions is celebrated for Swami Vivekananda’s impressive articulation of the cultural ethos of India and its ancient values ​​while emphasizing its philosophical character. acceptance of the truth that guides every religion.

To mark the two notable milestones, Prime Minister Narendra Modi tweeted the two birthday messages for Bhave on Sunday and remembered Vivekananda, a social reformer and spiritual figure whom the BJP has historically tried to appropriate.

Paying tribute to Bhave, born in 1895, Modi tweeted: “His life was a manifestation of Gandhi’s principles”. He also praised Bhave’s passion for social empowerment. It was Bhave who gave the bugle call of ‘Jai Jagat.’ “We are inspired by his ideals and are committed to fulfilling his dreams for our nation,” Modi tweeted.

He also noted the “special bond” 9/11 has with Swami Vivekananda and shared the speech on Twitter. “It was on this day in 1893 that he gave one of his most remarkable speeches in Chicago. His speech gave the world a glimpse into the culture and ethos of India,” said the Prime Minister on the microblogging site.

Who was Vinoba Bhave?

Born in 1895, Bhave dedicated his life to spreading Gandhi’s values ​​and is particularly known for his “Bhoodan” campaign as he persuaded people across the country to donate some of their land which he distributed to the landless poor.

Its mass movements aimed to ensure a better quality of life for the poor and oppressed. His emphasis on the collective spirit will always continue to inspire generations, he said.

Bhave, who had been described by Mahatma Gandhi as someone who was absolutely against untouchability and had an unwavering commitment to India’s cause of freedom. Bhave, however, had drawn criticism from sections of Indian politics and academia after he supported the 1975 emergency imposed by then-Congress Premier Indira Gandhi.

Who was Swami Vivekananda

Swami Vivekananda is a spiritual and intellectual icon of India and is revered by politicians to this day for his contribution to nation building and national regeneration. The spiritual pioneer was the founder of the Ramakrishna Mission and Ramakrishna Math, which provided the fundamental teachings of spirituality all over the world. Vivekanda’s gift for gossip and his rebellious yet humble lyrics earned him the title “Marvel of Oratorical Powers”. He achieved great international fame at a time when India was still a British colony.

In 1893, Vivekananda represented India at the World Parliamentary Conference on Religions in Chicago where he delivered an iconic and bold speech in which he declared that “all religions are different paths leading to the one Lord”. The day became one of the most important moments of his life and propelled him to instant popularity. His powerful words spoken at the Conference more than a century ago continue to live on today in theological and philosophical discourses as well as in political discourses.

Vivekanda’s teachings and advice for young people have also remained relevant to this day. “Get up, wake up and don’t stop until the goal is achieved,” he said. His birthday is celebrated as National Youth Day across the country.

Bhave and Vivekananda had a profound impact on Indian morality. While Bhave contributed to a host of social movements that helped empower Indians in a post-colonial world, Vivekananda helped forge the global appeal of India’s brand of spirituality.

(With PTI entries)



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