When Srimat Swami Gahananandaji Maharaj visited Madurai for laying foundation stone for the Temple of Sri Ramakrishna, I had the good fortune receive spiritual initiation from him. Then in a spiritual fervour, I visited Belur Math(near Kolkatta) and stayed there for nine days. This was purely a spritual trip and hence I had no time for anything else at Kolkatta. I could visit holy places mentioned in the Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna like the Dakshineshwar Temple and the various centres of the Math at Kamarpukur, Jayarambati, Shyampukur, Cossipore, Baranagore, Antpur, Baghbazar, Kankurgachhi and Gol Park. It was a wonderful and unforgettable experience.
For those who do not know much about the Math and Mission:
“Ramakrishna Math is a monastic order for men brought into existence by Sri Ramakrishna (1836-1886), the great 19th century saint of Bengal, who is regarded as the Prophet of Modern Age.
Ramakrishna Mission is a registered society in which monks of Ramakrishna Math and lay devotees cooperate in conducting various types of social service mainly in India. It was founded by Sri Ramakrishna’s chief disciple and religious leader, Swami Vivekananda (1863-1902), who is regarded as ‘one of the main moulders of the modern world’, in the words of an eminent Western scholar.
These twin organizations have set in motion a non-sectarian, universal spiritual movement which has been silently working for more than a hundred years to catalyze the spiritual regeneration of humanity. The chief catalyst in this ongoing transformation is India’s ancient religious philosophy known as a Vedanta…… In modern times, this ancient system of thought has been purified, unified and energized by Sri Ramakrishna, and expounded in the modern idiom by Swami Vivekananda and thus made available all over the world without any distinctions of caste, creed or race.
The ideology of Ramakrishna Math and Mission consists of the eternal principles of Vedanta as lived and experienced by Sri Ramakrishna and expounded by Swami Vivekananda. “
Some of the basic principles:
1. God realization is the ultimate goal of life.
2. Potential divinity of the soul.
3. Synthesis of the Yogas.
4. Morality based on Strength
5. Harmony of Reglions
6. All Work is Sacred.
7. Work as Worship.
8. Service to Man is Service to God.
Motto: “For one’s salvation and for the welfare of the world”
Courtesy: “Ramakrishna Math and Ramakrishna Mission – Their History, Ideals & Activities