Kolkata, Jan 12 (IBNS): India on Sunday remembered Swami Vivekananda as the entire nation and Kolkata especially celebrated the 151st birth anniversary of the Hindu monk and seer who took Hinduism to the world.
Belur Math near Kolkata in Howrah on the banks of the Hooghly river, which is the global headquarters of the Ramkrishna Math and Ramkishna Mission, has also organised a day-long celebration to observe his birth anniversary.To mark this day and pay homage to the legendary Bengali, several Hindus indulge themselves with special prayers, meditation, devotional songs, religious discourses, yoga performances and short plays.
Swamiji’s birthday is also celebrated as India’s National Youth Day that is commemorated with processions, youth conventions, seminars, yoga, sports, and other cultural activities.
The Calcutta born Bengali, who is known globally for his speech at Chicago in 1893 at a religious gathering that began with;”Sisters and Brothers of America,” was the chief disciple of the 19th century mystic Ramakrishna Paramahansa and the founder of the Ramakrishna Math and the Ramakrishna Mission.
He is considered as a key figure in the introduction of Indian philosophies of Vedanta and Yoga to the “Western” World, mainly in America and Europe and is also credited with raising interfaith awareness.
Vivekananda is also credited in bringing Hinduism to the status of a major world religion during the end of the 19th century as well as to introduce Hinduism at the Parliament of the World’s Religions at Chicago in 1893.
On this day, several schools across Kolkata from north to south were spotted hosting processions on road, with students marching, singing and preaching the wisdom of Swamiji.
Not limiting to schools only, people from different walks of life also hosted processions to commemorate the day.
Matadors and mini vans were spotted carrying boys and girls decked in the looks and make-ups of Swami Vivekananda, Ramakrishna and Sarada Devi.
Several localities across the city have also organised cultural shows with songs and skits based on his teachings to mark the day.
Saffrons marquees adorned with large photographs of Vivekananda were sported throughout the city.
Meanwhile traffic was slow in various parts of Kolkata as long processions held up the vehicles causing traffic clots.
Several organisations across the country have engaged in various initiatives to celebrate Vivekananda’s anniversary.