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Ramakrishna Paramahamsa

His Life
Sri Ramakrishna Paramahamsa (February 18, 1836 - August 16, 1886), born Gadadhar Chattopadhyaya, is a famous mystic of nineteenth century India. His religious school of thought led to the formation of the Ramakrishna Mission by his chief disciple Swami Vivekananda—both were influential figures in the Bengali Renaissance and the Hindu renaissance during 19th and 20th century. He was considered an avatar or incarnation of God by many of his disciples, and is considered as such by many of his devotees today.



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Ramakrishna was born into a poor Brahmin Vaishnava family in rural Bengal. He became the priest at the Dakshineswar Kali Temple, dedicated to Mother Kali, which had the influence of the main strands of Bengali and Indian bhakti. His first spiritual teacher was an ascetic woman skilled in Tantra and vaishnava bhakti. Later an Advaita Vedantin ascetic taught him non-dual meditation, under whom Ramakrishna experienced Nirvikalpa Samadhi. Ramakrishna also experimented with other religions, notably Islam and Christianity, and said that they all lead to the same God. He had wide popular appeal, speaking in rustic Bengali, making use of many stories and parables. Though conventionally uneducated, he attracted attention among the Bengali intelligentsia and middle classes. By the mid-1870s Ramakrishna had become the focal point of a resurgence of Hinduism, particularly among Westernized intellectuals. He eventually gathered and organized a group of followers, led by his chief disciple Swami Vivekananda, who continued his work as a monk following Ramakrishna's death in 1886. Ramakrishna's ideas were spread to the West by Swami Vivekananda, beginning in 1893 as the spokesman for Hinduism at the first Parliament of the World's Religions at Chicago. There Vivekananda's message of universalism was well received and he attracted widespread support. He eventually established the Vedanta Society to spread the universal truths of Hindu philosophy in America and in India he founded the Ramakrishna Mission—a monastic society that promotes Ramakrishna's ideas of religious pluralism and carries out social service. The Ramakrishna movement has been termed as one of the revitalization movements of India. As of 2008, Ramakrishna Mission has 166 branch centers all over India and in different parts of the world and the headquarters is located at the Belur Math.


His parents were Khudiram Chattopâdhyâya. birthplace temple on the rightRamakrishna was born in 1836. and Chandramani Devî. the Rāmāyaṇa. the form of Vishnu worshipped at Gaya. he showed great desire and ability to learn. Ramakrishna described an intense experience of spiritual ecstasy. was an extremely popular figure in his village. Chandramani Devi is said to have had a vision of light entering her womb before Ramakrishna was born. and Śrīmad Bhāgavatam. It is said that Ramakrishna was named Gadadhar in response to a dream Khudiram had in Gaya before Ramakrishna’s birth. At a very early age he was well versed in the Purāṇas. The family shrine is on the left. orthodox brahmin family. the Mahābhārata. tales and dramas which were based on the religious scriptures. He would serve wandering monks who stopped in Kamarpukur on their way to Puri and listen to their religious debates with rapt attention. and rejected his schooling saying that he was not interested in mere "bread winning education". It is reported that Ramakrishna's parents experienced various supernatural incidents. as Ramakrishna was known in his early days. He had a natural gift for the fine arts like drawing and clay modelling. However. hearing them from wandering monks and the Kathaks — a class of men in ancient India who preached and sang the Purāṇas for the uneducated masses. he disliked attending school. He easily mastered the songs. in which Lord Gadadhara.ramakrishna. Family house Gadadhar. visions before his birth. into a very poor but pious.html 14/06/2011 . appeared to him and told him he would be born as his son. He learned to read and write in Bengali and was able to follow Sanskrit even though he could not speak the language. in the village of Kamarpukur. He was walking along the paddy fields and suddenly looked up to find a flock of white cranes flying with dark thunder-clouds as http://www. Though Ramakrishna shunned the traditional school system. At the age of six or seven. in the Hooghly district of West Ramakrishna was born as the fourth and last child to his parents.Ramakrishna Page 3 of 20 Birth and childhood The small house at Kamarpukur where Ramakrishna lived (centre).

In 1855 Ramkumar was appointed as the priest of Dakshineswar Kali Temple. From his tenth or eleventh year on. Ramakrishna's father died in 1843. The Kali Temple of Dakshineswar Priest at Dakshineswar Kali Temple Dakshineswar Kāli 14/06/2011 . He also became more involved in contemplative activities such as reading the sacred epics. built by Rani Rashmoni—a rich woman of Calcutta who belonged to the untouchable kaivarta community. This event had a profound effect on the boy and is considered as one of the determinative points in Ramakrishna's religious life. after which the responsibilities of the family were handled by his elder brother Ramkumar. and portraying Shiva in a drama during Shivaratri festival. Ramakrishna had experiences of similar nature a few other times in his childhood—while worshipping the goddess Vishalakshi.ramakrishna. trances became common.Ramakrishna Page 4 of 20 a background. Ramakrishna moved to Calcutta in the year 1852 and started assisting his elder brother in the priestly work. He became so absorbed that he lost consciousness of everything outward. since the temple was http://www. the family's financial position worsened. Ramkumar started a Sanskrit school in Calcutta and also served as a purohit priest. where Ramakrishna spent a major portion of his adult life. This loss drew him closer to his mother. When Ramakrishna was into his teens. and he spent his time in household activities. He later said that in that state he had experienced an indescribable joy. including the daily worship of the household deities. Ramakrishna moved in with his brother only after some persuasion.

no matter how trivial or philosophical. Childlike. http://www. The name Ramakrishna is said to have been given him by Mathur Babu. and some took him to be a great lover of God. Ramakrishna describes his first vision of Kali as follows: I had a marvelous vision of the Mother. the deity that Ramakrishna worshipped. … What was happening in the outside world I did not know. he would go into a nearby jungle and spend the entire night meditating on God. but within me there was a steady flow of undiluted bliss. doors. a sea that was consciousness. However far and in whatever direction I looked. when he is reported to have seen light issuing from the deity in waves. He became seized by a desire to have a vision of Kali—a direct realization of her reality—and believed the stone image to be living and breathing and taking food out of his hand. where he spent the rest of his life. because he could not see his mother Kali as perfectly as he wished. but their attempts to seduce Ramakrishna only failed. without any consciousness of even his clothes falling off. and would not be comforted. He took the prostitutes to be forms of Divine Mother herself. coming towards me. After the vision.After Ramkumar's death Ramakrishna became more contemplative. When Ramkumar passed away in 1856. along with his nephew Hriday. So Mathur arranged for prostitutes to visit Ramakrishna. Bhavatārini Kali. temples and everything else vanished altogether. with Ramakrishna given the task of decorating the deity.Ramakrishna Page 5 of 20 constructed by a low caste woman. the son-in-law of Rani Rasmani.…It was as if houses. he was so impatient to see Mother Kali that he decided to end his life. I saw shining waves. as if there was nothing anywhere! And what I saw was an infinite shoreless sea of light. He was allotted a room in the northwestern corner of the temple courtyard.ramakrishna. One day. Ramakrishna. People became divided in their opinions—some held Ramakrishna to be mad. Seizing a sword hanging on the wall. he obeyed what he called the will of the Mother Kali in everything. one after another. Ramakrishna took his place as the priest of the Kali temple. At night. Ramakrishna surrendered himself to Kali.html 14/06/2011 . Although Rani Rasmani and her son-in-law Mathur Babu had faith in Ramakrishna and left him free do whatever he liked. and I felt the presence of the Divine Mother. At times he would weep bitterly and cry out loudly while worshiping. they thought that Ramakrishna was suffering from the effects of unduly prolonged continence. he was about to strike himself with became assistants to Ramkumar. He began to look upon the image of the goddess Kali as his mother and the mother of the universe. and fell down unconscious. altogether new.

but the age difference was typical for 19th century rural Bengal. He later said that "I lost all perception of difference between the two in my mind. he would take gold and silver coins. Physicians were consulted. No wonder people took me for mad. and threw them both into the Ganges.ramakrishna. but instead of toning down. Far from objecting to the marriage. "It seems to me that the patient's condition is due to some kind of spiritual excitement—medicine won't cure him. and one of them told. He was unable to attend to any external duties.Ramakrishna Page 6 of 20 Marriage Rumors spread to Kamarpukur that Ramakrishna had gone mad as a result of his over-taxing spiritual exercises at three miles to the north-west of Kamarpukur. Sarada was found and the marriage was duly solemnised in 1859. Similarly. he suffered from sleeplessness." http://www. Ramakrishna mentioned that they could find the bride at the house of Ramchandra Mukherjee in Jayrambati. repeat "money is rubbish.html 14/06/2011 . and mixing them with rubbish. Ramakrishna's mother and his elder brother Rameswar decided to get Ramakrishna married. his spiritual fervour and devotion only increased. he would eat food cooked by the lowest classes and serve the Pariahs—servants and cleaners who belonged to the lowest caste. The five-year-old bride. Religious Practices and Teachers After his marriage Ramakrishna returned to Calcutta and took upon himself the charges of the temple again. even when asleep. Ramakrishna left Sarada in December 1860 and did not return until May 1867. To get rid of the thought that he belonged to a higher brahmanical caste." It is said that he had become so instinctive that his body would shrink back convulsively if were touched with a coin. thinking that marriage would be a good steadying influence upon him—by forcing him to accept responsibility and to keep his attention on normal affairs rather than being obsessed with his spiritual practices and visions. and burning sensations throughout his body. money is rubbish". Ramakrishna was 23 at this point.

Bhairavi Her real name was Yogeshwari and she was in her late thirties. The Bhairavi assured him that he http://www. Ramakrishna described the Bhairavi about his spiritual experiences and his seemingly abnormal physical conditions.Ramakrishna Page 7 of 20 Bhairavi Brahmani and Tantra In 1861. Other details about her life before her arrival in Dakshineswar are unknown. an orange robed female ascetic appeared at Dakshineshwar.ramakrishna. She was well versed in scriptures and was adept in Tantric and Vaishnava methods of worship.html 14/06/2011 .

the attitude of a friend. and madhura. The Bhairavi also recommended the cure for Ramakrishna's physical ailments.ramakrishna. vātsalya. Vaishnava Bhakti The Vaishnava Bhakti traditions speak of five different bhāvas—different attitudes that a devotee can take up in order to express his love for the God. Ramakrishna also became an adept at Kundalini Yoga. the attitude of a servant.Ramakrishna Page 8 of 20 was not mad but was experiencing phenomena that accompany mahabhava—the supreme attitude of loving devotion towards the divine and quoting from the bhakti shastras.html 14/06/2011 . Ramakrishna completed his tantric sadhana in 1863. or incarnation of the divine. and was the first person to openly declare that Ramakrishna was an avatara. Though Ramakrishna acknowledged the left-hand tantric path as another means of spiritual enlightenment. Ramakrishna is known to have practised some of these bhavas http://www. he went through a full course of sixty four major tantric sadhanas. he did not recommend it to anybody. The Bhairavi on the other hand looked upon Ramakrishna as an avatara. a form of ritual in which the Virgin Goddess is worshiped symbolically in the form of a young girl. said that other religious figures like Radha and Chaitanya had similar experiences. It is very difficult and often brings about the downfall of the aspirant. sakhya. activities like eating of parched grain. the serene attitude. Ramakrishna took the attitude of a son towards the Bhairavi. Under the tutelage of the Bhairavi. "It is not a good path. when Ramakrishna's chief disciple Vivekananda asked him about the left-hand which utilize as a means of liberation. According Ramakrishna and his biographers. dāsya. They are: śānta . The tantric sadhanas generally include a set of heteredox practices called vamachara (left-hand path). Under her guidance. which expose the sense and spirit to all the disturbances of the flesh and imaginations. Later. The Bhairavi initiated Ramakrishna into the tantric practices. He began with mantra rituals such as japa and purascarana and many other rituals designed to purify the mind and establish self-control." The Bhairavi also taught Ramakrishna the kumari-puja. with the yogic techniques and the tantra played an important part in the initial spiritual development of Ramakrishna. the attitude of a woman towards her lover. But Ramakrishna was indifferent and unconcerned about people calling him an incarnation. Ramakrishna did not directly participate in the last two of those activities. the attitude of a mother toward her child. fish and meat along with drinking of wine and sexual intercourse. that all he needed was a suggestion of them to produce the desired result. so that these may be transcended. he would say. The Bhairavi.

In doing so. he is said to have cultivated the Santa bhava — the passive "peaceful" attitude — towards Kali. while he was observing this bhava. Krishna. his character became filled with motherly tenderness. and he began to regard himself as a woman and even his speech and gestures changed to that of a woman. the home of Chaitanya and Nityananda. Ramakrishna completely identified himself with Hanuman. the attitude of a mother towards God. there was even a small growth in the lower part of his spine resembling the tail of a monkey. after his vision of Kali. The Panchavati Totapuri and Vedanta http://www. In 1864. he ate and walked like a monkey.ramakrishna. At some point. the monkey-god. At the end of this sadhana.Ramakrishna Page 9 of 20 At some point in the period between his vision of Kali and his marriage. who is considered to be the ideal devotee and servant of Rama. Ramakrishna further narrates that. merging into his body. Ramakrishna visited Nadia. Earlier. he could actually feel the presence of child Rama as a living God in the metal image. He started worshiping Rama in the attitude of Hanuman. dressed himself in women's attire for several days and regarded himself as one of the Gopis of Vrindavan. As a climax to his dāsya experiment. Ramakrishna later engaged in the practice of madhura bhāva— the attitude of Gopis and Radha towards their lover. spent much of his time in trees and his eyes got a restless look like the eyes of a monkey. Accroding to Ramakrishna. He had an intense vision of two young boys merging into his Ramakrishna practiced dāsya bhāva—the attitude of a servant towards his master. in order to realise this love. the consort of Rama. the 15th-century founders of Bengali Gaudiya Vaishnava bhakti. he attained savikalpa samadhi—vision and union with Krishna.html 14/06/2011 . Ramakrishna practiced vātsalya bhāva. he worshipped a metal image of Ramlālā (Rama as a child) in the attitude of a mother. According to Ramakrishna and his biographers. Ramakrishna. Ramakrishna had a vision of Sita. During this period.

He addressed Totapuri as Nangta or Langta ("Naked One"). remain in Bhavamukha". and the world is illusory. Ramakrishna experienced Nirvikalpa Samadhi which is considered to be the highest state in spiritual realisation.Ramakrishna Page 10 of 20 The Panchavati and the hut where Ramakrishna performed his advaitic sadhana.ramakrishna. a wandering monk named Totapuri.html 14/06/2011 . a gnarled physique. After the departure of Totapuri. Ramakrishna said: I devoutly repeated the name of Allah. when his devotee Shambu Charan Mallik read the Bible to him. a sterner mien. much less worship them—for the Hindu way of thinking had disappeared altogether from my mind. for the enlightenment of the people. Totapuri stayed with Ramakrishna for nearly eleven months and instructed him further in the teachings of advaita. Instead. I have no separate existence.In 1864. initiated Ramakrishna into Islam. Govinda Roy. and a virile voice". and felt disinclined even to see images of the Hindu gods and goddesses. said their prayer five times daily. Ramakrishna reportedly remained for six months in a state of absolute contemplation. The mud hut has been replaced by a brick one. At the end of 1873 he started the practice of Christianity. wore a cloth like the Arab Moslems." Under the guidance of Totapuri. he believed in formless Brahman. I am that Brahman alone. One day when Ramakrishna saw the picture of http://www. Ramakrishna said that for several days he was filled with Christian thoughts and no longer thought of going to the Kali temple. Totapuri first guided Ramakrishna through the rites of sannyasa— renunciation of all ties to the world. Ramakrishna said that this period of nirvikalpa samadhi came to an end when he received a command from the Mother Kali. After three days of practice he had a vision of a "radiant personage with grave countenance and white beard resembling the Prophet and merging with his body". Totapuri looked at the world as illusory and the worship of Gods and Godesses as fantasies of the deluded mind. because it was considered unorthodox to address one's guru by name and also as a wandering monk of the Naga sect he did not wear any referring to a state of existence intermediate between samadhi and normal consciousness. Then he instructed him in the teaching of advaita—that "Brahman alone is real. Islam and Christianity In 1866. "Remain in Bhavamukha. Ramakrishna described Totapuri as "a teacher of masculine strength. Ramakrishna was initiated into sanyassa by a vedantic ascetic. a Hindu guru who practiced Sufism.

html 14/06/2011 . Sarada Devi said. Ramakrishna said that his view of woman as Mother was not limited to his companion Sarada Devi and he recognised the mother even in the most degraded prostitutes.Peter from drowning in the water. http://www. In his own room amongst other divine pictures was one of Christ. The marriage was never consummated because he regarded Sarada as the Divine Mother in person. Sarada Devi continued to play an important role in the nascent religious movement. when the child bride Sarada Devi attained the age of seventeen or eighteen. She also heard reports that he had become a great religious man.ramakrishna. he felt that the figures became alive and had a vision in which Jesus merged with his body. After Ramakrishna's death. As a priest Ramakrishna performed the ritual ceremonies—the Shodashi Puja (the adoration of womanhood)—and considered Sarada Devi as the Divine Mother. and he burnt incense before it morning and evening. and was in deep grief. Ramakrishna. Sarada Devi was made to sit in the seat of and worshiped with flowers and incense." Sarada Devi is considered as his first disciple. Sarada Devi Sarada Devi (1853 – 1920)According to the customs of that time. and it was by this name that she was known to his disciples. There was also a picture showing Jesus Christ saving St. "I was married to a husband who never addressed me as 'tui.'(you) Ah! How he treated me! Not even once did he tell me a harsh word or wound my feelings. it was her duty to join her husband.Ramakrishna Page 11 of 20 Madonna and Child Jesus. Regarding Ramakrishna's treatment of her. Ramakrishna referred to his wife as the Holy Mother. She had heard rumours that her husband had become mad.

which was instrumental in bringing Ramakrishna to the attention of a wider audience. propagate his ideals and reorient their socio-religious outlook. Following Keshab. Ramakrishna's influence was not confined only to the elite educated class of Calcutta. and beyond Bengal itself. the father of Rabindranath Tagore. Mozoomdar wrote the first English biography of Ramakrishna. Keshab also publicized Ramakrishna's teachings in the journals of New Dispensation over a period of several years. there was little of an active movement. "All religions as true" and "Assimilation of Hindu polytheism into Brahmoism". Not all Brahmos were uncritical admirers of Ramakrishna. He had also met Swami Dayananda. but under the influence of Ramakrishna he accepted Hindu polytheism and established the "New Dispensation" (Nava Vidhan) religious movement. a renowned social worker. Many prominent people of Calcutta—Pratap Chandra Mazumdar. entitled The Hindu Saint in the Theistic Quarterly Review (1879). They measured him according to their own deals of the householder's life. Some disapproved of his ascetic renunciation. Keshab had accepted Christianity. Some could not understand his Samadhi and considered it to be a nervous malady. Some former Brahmos proclaimed Ramakrishna's message to the educated public of Bengal through their speeches and writings. based on Ramakrishna's principles—"Worship of God as Mother". especially the Bhadralok (English-educated classes of Bengal) and the Europeans residing in India. Newspapers reported that Ramakrishna was spreading "Love" and "Devotion" among the educated classes of Calcutta and that he had succeeded in reforming the character of some youths whose morals had been corrupt. and Ishwar Chandra Vidyasagar. including the Bauls and the Kartabhajas. Ramakrishna played an important http://www. He is seen supported by his nephew Hriday and surrounded by brahmo devotees. published in several newspapers and journals. Keshab had rejected Idoltary. other Brahmos such as Vijaykrishna Goswami started to admire Ramakrishna. While he was alive. and had separated from the Adi Brahmo Samaj.ramakrishna. however. Ramakrishna also had interactions with Debendranath Tagore.html 14/06/2011 . Shivanath Shastri and Trailokyanath Sanyal—began visiting him during this time (1871-1885).In 1875. Ramakrishna met the influential Brahmo Samaj leader Keshab Chandra Sen.Ramakrishna Page 12 of 20 Influence on Keshab Chandra Sen Ramakrishna in samadhi at the house of Keshab Chandra Sen. Upadhyay Brahmabandhab was originally a critic of Ramakrishna and refused to recognize him as an avatara. During his lifetime his ideas and influence spread beyond the intelligentsia to other sections of Bengali society. which played a vital role in introducing Ramakrishna to Westerners like the German indologist Max Muller.

Hastie told his students that if they wanted to know the real meaning of it.Ramakrishna Page 13 of 20 role in the Bengali Renaissance as the link between the Brahmo Samaj and the emergence of the Hindu Revival Movement. Mahendranath Gupta.ramakrishna. only to end up as an inveterate follower. Below Saradananda. a confirmed libertine. Vivekananda. including Narendranath Dutta (later Swami Vivekananda). a householder devotee and the author of Sri-SriRamakrisna-kathamrta. they should go to Ramakrishna of Dakshineswar. Hastie of the Scottish Church College. to visit Ramakrishna. they were deeply influenced by Ramakrishna's teachings and a few became his ardent disciples. Devotees like Surendranath Mitra. Calcutta. first approached Ramakrishna with an intent to "twist his ears" (a gesture of insult). However. Turiyananda.Most of his prominent disciples came between Among the Europeans who were influenced by Ramakrishna was Principal Dr. Ramakrishna had an extraordinary style of preaching and instructing. The monastic disciples Devotees and Disciples Some Monastic Disciples: Trigunatitananda. W. Hriday. Many were highly educated. In the course of explaining the word trance in the poem The Excursion by William Wordsworth. This prompted some of his students. convincing even the most skeptical visitors. and included atheists and a few who came just out of curiosity. Shivananda. his nephew http://www.W.html 14/06/2011 . Brahmananda.

ramakrishna.html 14/06/2011 .eu/EnglishSaVie.Ramakrishna Page 14 of 20 Rani Rasmani Mathur Mohan Biswas Sambhu Chandra Mallick Balaram Basu Surendranath Mitra http://www.

eu/EnglishSaVie.ramakrishna.Ramakrishna Page 15 of 20 Aghoramani Devi.html 14/06/2011 . 'Gopala's Ma' Girish Chandra Ghosh Keshab Chandra Sen and his disciples of the Brahmo Samaj Purna Chandra Ghosh http://www.

html 14/06/2011 .eu/EnglishSaVie. 'M' Golap Ma http://www.ramakrishna.Ramakrishna Page 16 of 20 Vijay Krishna Goswami Ramchandra Datta Gauri Ma Mahendranath Goupta.

As his name spread. were engaged. old men. Sashibhushan Chakravarty (Swami Ramakrishnananda). and mimic the ways of all types of worldly people— visitors were kept enthralled. Rakhal Chandra Ghosh (Swami Brahmananda). the sign of the Sanyasin. He gave them the saffron robe. women and children". men of faith. When his condition aggravated he was relocated to a large garden house at Cossipore on December 11. According to his biographers. Ramakrishna was very talkative and would out-talk the bestknown orators of his time. an ever shifting crowd of all classes and castes visited Ramakrishna—"Maharajas and beggars. Mahendralal Sarkar. Girish Chandra Ghosh. crack jokes. he never asked householders to renounce their family life. http://www. explain abstruse Vedantic doctrines with extremely mundane illustrations. 1885. tell tales. Even though he had a band of dedicated renunciates. which gradually developed into throat cancer. Among the women. A few of them were initiated into sanyasa through mantra deeksha. Brahmos. Ramakrishna ordered his monastic disciples to beg their food from door to door without distinction of caste. The Last Days The Disciples and Devotees at Ramakrishna's funeralIn the beginning of 1885 Ramakrishna suffered from clergyman's throat. In preparation for monastic life. raise questions and answer them himself. and initiated them with Mantra Deeksha. Kaliprasad Chandra (Swami Abhedananda). Akshay Kumar Sen and others. men of action and business. Christians. Taraknath Ghoshal (Swami Shivananda). For hours he would reminisce about his own eventful spiritual life. Ramakrishna emphasized service to other women rather than tapasya. He was moved to Shyampukur near Calcutta. and sing songs. including Dr. artists and devotees. Saratchandra Chakravarty (Swami Saradananda) and others.ramakrishna. where some of the best physicians of the time. A small group of women disciples including Gauri Ma and Yogin Ma.html 14/06/2011 . Monastic disciples who renounced their family and became the earliest monks of the Ramakrishna order—Narendranath Dutta (Swami Vivekananda).Ramakrishna Page 17 of 20 Yogin Ma The householder devotees His chief disciples consisted of: Grihastas or The householders—Mahendranath Gupta. journalists and pandits.

Ramakrishna was advised by the doctors to keep the strictest silence. greed. 1886 at the Cossipore garden house. Ramakrishna said. evil passions. the idea of sex and the idea of money were the two main delusions that prevent people from realizing God. doubted Ramakrishna's claim of According to Ramakrishna. it is reported that Ramakrishna said to Vivekananda. Ramakrishna asked Vivekananda to take care of other monastic disciples and asked them to looked upon Vivekananda as their leader. speaking in rustic Bengali. freely using stories and parables.g. possessing nothing. Ramakrishna looked upon the world as Maya and he explained that avidya maya represents dark forces of creation (e. sensual desire. but ignoring the advise. lust and cruelty). By this power you will do immense good in the world and not until it is accomplished will you return to the absolute.Ramakrishna Page 18 of 20 Cossipore garden house During his last days. After the death of their master. He himself is now Ramakrishna in this body.ramakrishna. he incessantly conversed with visitors. His condition worsened gradually and he expired in the early morning hours of August 16. According to his disciples. which keep http://www. the monastic disciples lead by Vivekananda formed a fellowship at a half-ruined house at Baranagar near the river Ganga.html 14/06/2011 . this was Mahasamadhi." It is reported that when Vivekananda." During his final days. "Today I have given you my all and am now only a poor fakir. He emphasised God-realisation as the supreme goal of all living beings. "He who was Rama. Before his death. he was looked after by his disciples and Sarada Devi. Teachings Ramakrishna was a teacher of popular appeal. He who was Krishna. and that god-realization can be acheived by renouncing Kama-Kanchana (lust and gold). This became the first Math or monastery of the disciples who consistuted the first Ramakrishna Order. with the financial assistance of the householder disciples.

there is Shiva) which stemmed from his Advaitic perception of Reality. Many great thinkers including Max Muller. and recognized that in spite of the differences. spiritual virtues. Impact Ramakrishna was born during a period of social upheaval in Bengal in particular and India in general. love. The Hindu practice of Idol worship came under attack especially in Bengal. tribal welfare.Ramakrishna Page 19 of 20 people on lower planes of consciousness. enlightening qualities. but serving the living being as Shiva Himself) is considered as the inspiration for the philanthropic work carried out by his chief disciple Vivekananda. Leo Tolstoy have acknowledged Ramakrishna's contribution to humanity. purity. His teaching. His life and teachings were an important part of the renaissance that Bengal. and later India. These forces are responsible for human entrapment in the cycle of birth and death. which elevate human beings to the higher planes of consciousness. Mahatma Gandhi. The Mission conducts extensive work in health care. Jawaharlal Nehru. The Ramakrishna Mission was founded on his principles by Swami Vivekananda in 1897. and they must be fought and vanquished. represents higher forces of creation (e. "Jive daya noy. During Ramakrishna's time. Sri Aurobindo. and devotion). Vidya maya. the Ramakrishna Mission.ramakrishna. Hinduism faced a signficant intellectual challenge from Westerners and Indians alike. disaster relief. Ramakrishna and his movement.g.html 14/06/2011 . Shiv gyane jiv seba" (not kindness to living beings. elementary and higher education. Ramakrishna's influence is also seen in the works of the artists like Franz Dvorak and Philip Glass. played a leading role in the modern revival of Hinduism in India. experienced in the 19th century. An article of Wikipedia http://www. including Islam and Christianity. and many had denounced Hinduism and embraced Christianity or atheism. all religions are valid and true and they lead to the same ultimate goal—God. rural management. on the other hand. kindness. and on modern Indian Ramakrishna's proclaimed that jatra jiv tatra Shiv (wherever there is a living being. The movement is considered as one of the revitalization movements of India. Ramakrishna practised several religions.

ramakrishna.Ramakrishna Page 20 of 20 14/06/2011 .