SOCIAL REFORMERS AND SOCIO-RELIGIOUS REFORM MOVEMENTS
Let us discuss some important socio-religious reform movements-
Raja Rammohan Roy and the Brahmo Samaj:
- In order to purify Hinduism and to preach monotheism Raja Rammohan Roy established the Brahmo Samaj at Calcutta in 1828 .
- Popularly known as the “Maker of Modern India” and “Father of Modern India”, Raja Ram Mohan Roy, a social and educational reformer, was an idealist who contributed immensely in eradicating social evils prevalent in the society during the 18th century.
- He is considered as the first ‘modern man of India’.
- He was a pioneer of socio-religious reform movements in modern India.
- In 1815, he established the Atmiya Sabha.
- Later, it was developed into the Brahmo Sabha in August 1828.
- The work of the Atmiya Sabha was carried on by Maharishi Debendranath Tagore (father of Rabindranath Tagore), who renamed it as Brahmo Samaj.
- Raj Rammohan Roy is most remembered for helping Lord William Bentinck to declare the practice of Sati a punishable offence in 1829.
- He also protested against the child marriage and female infanticide.
- He favored the remarriage of widows, female education and women’s right to property.
- In 1817, he founded the Hindu College along with David Hare, a missionary. He also set up schools for girls.
- Rammohan Roy started the first Bengali weekly Samvad Kaumudi and edited a Persian weekly Mirat-ul-akhbar.
Henry Vivian Derozio and the Young Bengal Movement:
- Henry Vivian Derozio was the founder of the Young Bengal Movement.
- His followers were known as the Derozians and their movement the Young Bengal Movement.
- They attacked old traditions and decadent customs.
- They also advocated women’s rights and their education.
Swami Dayanand Saraswathi and the Arya Samaj:
- The Arya Samaj was founded by Swami Dayanand Saraswathi at Bombay in 1875.
- His motto was “Back to the Vedas” because he believed the Vedas were the source of true knowledge.
- He started the Suddhi movement to bring back those Hindus who had converted to other religions to its fold.
- He wrote the book Satyartha Prakash which contains his ideas.
- The first Dayanand Anglo-Vedic (DAV) School was founded in 1886 at Lahore.
- The Prarthana Samaj was founded in 1867 in Bombay by Dr. Atmaram Pandurang.
- It was a reform movement within Hinduism and concentrated on social reforms like inter-dining, inter-marriage, widow remarriage and uplift of women and depressed classes.
- Justice M.G. Ranade and R.G. Bhandarkar joined it in 1870 and infused new strength to it.
- Justice Ranade promoted the Deccan Education Society.
Swami Vivekananda and Ramakrishna Mission:
- The original name of Swami Vivekananda was Narendranath Dutta and he became the most famous disciple of Shri Ramkrishna Paramahamsa.
- He founded the Ramkrishna Mission at Belur in Howrah in 1897.
- He condemned the caste system and the current Hindu emphasis on rituals and ceremonies.
- Swami Vivekananda participated at the Parliament of Religions held in Chicago (USA) in September 1893 and raised the prestige of India and Hinduism very high.
- Vivekananda preached the message of strength and self reliance.
- The Theosophical Society was founded in New York (USA) in 1875 by Madam H.P. Blavatsky, a Russian lady, and Henry Steel Olcott, an American colonel.
- Their main objectives were to form a universal brotherhood of man without any distinction of race, colour or creed and to promote the study of ancient religions and philosophies.
- They established their headquarters at Adyar in Madras in 1882.
- Later in 1893, Mrs. Annie Besant arrived in India and took over the leadership of the Society after the death of Olcott.
- Mrs. Annie Besant founded the Central Hindu School along with Madan Mohan Malaviya at Benaras which later developed into the Banaras Hindu University.
Pandit Ishwar Chandra Vidyasagar:
- Pandit Ishwar Chandra was a great educator, humanist and social reformer.
- Vidyasagar founded many schools for girls.
- He helped J.D. Bethune to establish the Bethune School.
- He founded the Metropolitan Institution in Calcutta.
- He protested against child marriage and favoured widow remarriage which was legalised by the Widow Remarriage Act (1856).
Jyotiba Phule and Satyashodak Samaj:
- Jyotiba Phule belonged to a low caste family in Maharashtra.
- In 1873 he founded the Satyashodak Samaj to fight against the caste system.
- He pioneered the widow remarriage movement in Maharashtra and worked for the education for women.
- Jyotiba Phule and his wife established the first girls’ school at Poona in 1851.
You may also like to read:
- GA Notes:”CITIZENSHIP in Indian Constitution” For Railway & SSC Exams 2018
- GA Notes:”Different types of Economic goods” For Railway & SSC Exams 2018
- GA Notes:Provisions of important Acts in India During British Rule For Railway & SSC Exams 2018
- Check Railway Group-D Analysis
- Check Latest Updates About RRB Group D Exams