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PRACTICAL VEDANTA, THE REAL
MESSAGE OF SWAMI VIVEKANANDA
What was the
real message that Swami Vivekananda brought when he came to the West from India in 1893?
Some groups in the Western world have honored the centenary of Vivekananda's first visit
as a hundred years of Yoga. Those in India are inclined to see Vivekananda's centenary as
an anniversary of the revival of Hinduism in the modern world. Yet others view Vivekananda
as having started a universal religion synthesizing all the main religion of the world,
based on the teachings of his guru, Ramakrishna.
These groups have some validity to their points of view, but they do not
completely represent the Swami's great message. In addition, other groups in
India-including Communists and Christians who appear to have little in common with
Vivekananda and the real scope of his ideas-have tried to see in him some justification
for their points of view, portraying his as a social reformer, helper of the poor and
oppressed or even as anti-Hindu.