‘Sree Narayana Guru’

  • Category
    History & Culture
  • Published
    7th Sep, 2020

164th birth anniversary of of the father of Kerala’s renaissance Sree Narayana Guru observed on 2nd September.

Context

164th birth anniversary of of the father of Kerala’s renaissance Sree Narayana Guru observed on 2nd September.

About

Who was Sree Narayana Guru?

  • Sree Narayana Guru was born in 1864 in Kerala’s Thiruvananthapuram.
  • Sree Narayana Guru was a social reformer from Kerala who led a reform movement against casteism and promoted new values of spiritual freedom and social equality.
  • He led a reform movement against the injustice in the caste-ridden society of Kerala in order to promote spiritual enlightenment and social equality.
  • He laid great emphasis on the idea of ‘one caste, one religion and one god.’

Key-contributions

  • Sree Narayana Guru learned Sanskrit and poetry, drama & literary criticism, and logical rhetoric. The knowledge gained earned him the respect of many and he was then known as “Nanu Asan”.
  • In 1904 the Guru gave up his life of a wanderer and decided to settle down in a place to continue his spiritual practices. He chose Sivagiri at Varkala, twenty miles north of Thiruvananthapuram.
  • He started a Sanskrit school in Varkala and poor boys and orphans were given free education regardless of their caste  Temples were built at different places – Thrissur, Kannur, Anchuthengu, Tellicherry, Calicut, and Mangalore.
  • It was in the year 1912 he built the Sharada Devi Temple at
  • In 1913, he founded the Advaita Ashram at Aluva. This was an important event in his spiritual quest.
    • This Ashram was dedicated to a great principle –  Om Sahodaryam Sarvatra (all men are equal in the eyes of God).
    • This became the motto of the new Ashram.
  • Between 1918 and 1923 he visited Sri Lanka many times.
  • In 1921, a Conference of Universal Brotherhood was held at Aluva.
  • Again in 1924, a conference of all religions was held there. The Guru stressed the need for a Brahma Vidyalaya for a comparative study of different religious faiths.

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