HISTORY NOTES: Important Socio-Religious Reform Movements(Parts II) for RRB NTPC and SSC CHSL EXAM

Prarthana samaj:- 1867 (Bombay)
1. Founder – Atmaram Pandurang
2. Member – M. G. Ranade, R. G. Bhandarkar
3. It was influenced by Brahma samaj in the west.

4. The aim of Prarthana samaj was reforming Hindu religious thought & practice in the light of modern knowledge.
5. It preached the worship of one god & tried to free religion of caste orthodoxy & Priestly domination.
6. Its activities also spread to south India as a result of the Telugu reformed, Veeresalingam Panthulu who also formed Rajmundhry social Reform Association & worked for the upliftment of women & widow remarriage in Andhra.
7. Ranade established “Deccan educational society” in Pune in 1884.
8. Ranade established “Widow remarriage association in Maharashtra in 1891.
9. D. K. Karve established a widow home in Poona in 1899 & established Indian women university in 1906 in Bombay.
Jyotiba Phule
1. Phule Satya Sodhak samaj movement can be called as the first lower caste movement
2. But Phule’s work in the field of women education is equally great.
3. He considered education as the most important weapon for the liberation of lower caste.
4. He was the first person in India to start school for lower caste girls in 1851 in Poona.
5. He started school for untouchables for which he had to face many hardships.
6. He was also the pioneer of widow remarriage in Maharashtra.
7. He founded Satya Sodhak samaj in 1873.
8. He criticised Brahmanical ideology through his books like Ghulamgiri.
9. He was given the title of ‘Mahatma’ by people of Pune.
Ramkrishna & Vivekananda
1. Ramkrishna Paramhans (Gadadhar Chattopadhyay) was the priest of Dakshineswar temple of Calcutta.
2. His great disciple ‘Narendra Dutta’ better known as ‘swami Vivekanand’ popularised his religious message.
3. He too, like his guru “proclaimed the essential oneness of all religion.”
4. He himself subscribed to Vedanta which he declared to be a fully rational system.
5. Vivekanand condemned the caste system & rituals & superstitions.
6. In 1893, He won over the audience at world parliament of religious at Chicago by addressing them as “Brother & Sisters”. He was the first Indian to proclaim the greatness of Hinduism to the west.
7. In 1896, Vivekananda founded the Ramakrishna mission to carry on humanitarian relief & social work. It laid emphasis not on Personel salvation but on social good or social service especially the poor.
8. He established two centres at Vellur & Mayawati (Almora).
9. His philosophy of action & national regeneration had great influence on the Indian nationalism, particularly on extremist.
His Irish disciple sister Nivedita (Margaret noble) actively helped the revolutionaries against British.
Subhash Chandra Bose called him “The spiritual father of modern national moment”.
Swami Dayanand Saraswati
1. Birth – Dist – Mauravi, GJ, 1824
2. Childhood name – Moolshankar
3. Swami Poornanand gave him name “Dayanand Saraswati” in 1848.
4. In 1861 – He met blind saint Birjanand (Spiritual teacher of him)
5. Arya Samaj founded in 1875 – (Later head quarter shifted to Lahore)
6. Swami Dayanand gave the mantra “go back to Vedas”
7. He wrote a book “Satyarth Prakash (1874)” which contains his philosophical & religious Ideas.
8. He regarded Vedas as infallible & as the fountain of all knowledge.
9. He was opposed to idolatry, rituals & priesthood, and particularly to the prevalent caste system preached by Brahmins.
10. He also favoured the study of western science & laid great emphasis on education.
11. He was the first person used word “swaraj”.
12. Accept Hindi as the national language.
13. He promoted “Suddhi Andolan”.
14. He died in 1883 in Ajmer.
15. After his death, Arya samaj split on the issue of type of education to be popularised whether western or Sanskrit based.
16. Lala Hansraj supporter of English education established “Dayanand Anglo-Vedic college” at Lahore. (1886)
17. Swami Shradhanand (Sanskrit Supporter) established “Gurukul Kangri” near Haridwar. (1902)
18. The Arya Samajist were vigorous advocates of social reform & worked actively to improve the condition of women & to spread education among them.
Theosophical society.
1. 1875, New York
2. Founder – Madam Blavatsky & Colonel Olcott
3. They came to India in 1879 & founded headquarter ‘Adyar’ (Near madras) in 1886.
4. The theosophist movement soon grew in India, As a result of the leadership given to it by Mrs Annie Besant who had come to India in 1893.
5. She was Irish & was a member of Fabian socialist club in England.
6. The theosophist advocated the revival & strengthening of the ancient, religions of Hinduism, Zoroastrianism & Buddhism.
7. They recognise the doctrine of transmigration of the soul & also emphasized on mysticism & even occultism.
8. Mrs Besant established the central Hindu school at Banaras Later developed by Madan Mohan Malviya into the Banaras Hindu university.
9. Also, work for “youth education”.


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